David Kilgour & The Heavy 8’s, Christopher Columbus
The design of an album is founded on an enormous amount of trust between the artist and designer. The album cover will become the visual manifestation of a body of songs that are often years in the making and deeply personal. The package and cover image serve as the messenger by which the album is presented to the world and neither artist nor designer takes that significance lightly. The process is often fun and lively, but there is a certain weight in proportion to the amount of care and work that goes into making an album.
If an album is an impeccably-crafted, carefully-paced, no-detail-left-unconsidered dinner, a 7-inch is a Jolly Rancher winged out to the crowd along the parade route. With this diminished investment, there is a lightness to the design conversation that affords more risk-taking, humor, and specificity (after all, it is representing just two songs that may not even be connected to one another thematically.)
About the A-side for this 7-inch, David Kilgour wrote,
I started writing this in my head after being stuck in Barcelona a couple of years back at the end of a Clean tour of Europe (we had just played Primavera). My flight out was delayed by a day so I spent most of the day hanging around the Rambla de Santa Monica, where a statue of Christopher Columbus stands. It got me thinking about how his discovery of America led the world to where we are now. Where are we now? I like to think we are now looking at the beginning of the end of the corporate way of capitalist life …
That is Chris himself on the cover, adapted from an old lithograph that DK sent as a starting point. The result is a psychedelic confection (the B-side is a song originally recorded by The West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band in 1967) and a bit of an homage to one of my favorite childhood books.