Talking Heads were one of the most influential and innovative bands of the post-punk era, blending art-pop, funk, world music, and avant-garde sensibilities. Their music was matched by their distinctive and creative album covers, which often featured collaborations with renowned artists and designers. Here are some of the stories behind their iconic album covers.
Talking Heads: 77 (1977): The debut album of the band featured a simple but striking cover designed by Tony Wright, who also worked with Elvis Costello and The Jam. The cover showed a close-up of lead singer David Byrne's face, with his eyes looking in opposite directions. The effect was achieved by using two photographs taken by Mick Rock and superimposing them on each other. The cover conveyed Byrne's quirky and eccentric persona, as well as the band's angular and nervous sound.
More Songs About Buildings and Food (1978): The second album of the band marked their first collaboration with producer Brian Eno, who helped them expand their musical horizons. The cover was designed by Byrne himself, who used a Polaroid SX-70 camera to take 529 photographs of the band members in various poses and locations. He then arranged them into a grid-like mosaic that formed a larger image of the band. The cover was a homage to the pop art style of Andy Warhol, who was an inspiration for Byrne.
Remain in Light (1980): The fourth album of the band was their most ambitious and experimental work, incorporating influences from African music, polyrhythms, and electronic sounds. The cover was designed by Tibor Kalman, a Hungarian-born graphic designer who founded the influential design firm M&Co. Kalman used a technique called \"red eye reduction\" to create a distorted and colorful image of the band members' faces, which resembled tribal masks. The cover reflected the band's exploration of identity and culture in their music.
Speaking in Tongues (1983): The fifth album of the band was their most commercially successful work, featuring their biggest hit single \"Burning Down the House\". The cover was designed by Robert Rauschenberg, a legendary American artist who pioneered the use of collage, assemblage, and found objects in his art. Rauschenberg created a three-dimensional transparent vinyl sleeve that contained colored liquids that moved around when the record was played. He also used photographs of objects and landscapes that he took during his travels around the world. The cover was a stunning example of Rauschenberg's playful and inventive approach to art.[^3^]
Little Creatures (1985): The sixth album of the band was their most accessible and pop-oriented work, featuring songs like \"And She Was\" and \"Road to Nowhere\". The cover was designed by Howard Finster, an American folk artist who was known for his visionary and religious paintings. Finster depicted the band members as angelic figures surrounded by various animals and symbols. He also included a message that read: \"To David Byrne: This is Howard Finster from Georgia. I think you are one of God's little creatures.\" The cover was a tribute to Finster's naive and whimsical style.
Talking Heads' album covers were not only visually appealing, but also reflected their musical evolution and artistic vision. They were an integral part of their legacy as one of the most original and influential bands of all time. ec8f644aee