Decoding 4 of 2018’s most talked about album covers

Piano & a Microphone 1983
We’re celebrating more than 40 years of Prince Rogers Nelson (b. June 7, 2958), who released his first album For You on April 7, 1978. Prince’s next album cover was unveiled on his 60th birthday, June 7, 2018. The photo used is one that was taken by photographer Allen Beaulieu during his “1999 Tour.” It’s a personal favorite of this writer, as well as a heartwarming reminder of another late icon: Michael Jackson (“Man in the Mirror”). Prince’s posthumous project, Piano & a Microphone 1983, will reportedly be a nine-track album and will contain previously unreleased recordings, including early versions of his hit “Purple Rain.” It’s due out Sept. 21, 2018.

Kids See Ghosts

Kids See Ghosts is a collaboration between Kanye West and Kid Cudi, and is the name of their new group. The artwork, designed by Japanese contemporary artist Takashi Murakami is odd, creepy and dope at the same time. It reminiscent of tye-dye and contains shades of orange and pink that mix with blues and purples. The bright white-fanged creature is transporting an equally zany figure.

“Ye” (Image Source: Def Jam Recordings)

Ye

Kanye West’s album Ye released on June 1, 2018, and has seven tracks – “I Thought About Killing You,” “Yikes,” “All Mine,” “Wouldn’t Leave,” “No Mistakes,” “Ghost Town,” and “Violent Crimes.” West announced he suffers from bipolar disorder, which according to psychcentral.com is also known in some parts of the world by its older name, “manic depression,” is a mental disorder that is characterized by serious and significant mood swings. This writer is here for West embracing and not taking his depression battle lightly. His eighth studio album tells the story of his recent controversial experiences, his new normal and suicidal and homicidal thoughts. By June 4, it had over 100M streams worldwide; reached No. 1 iTunes albums in 63 countries worldwide; reached No. 1 on Spotify, global peak position; had five tracks in top 10 on Spotify’s global top 50; in the U.S., held the peak position, top 7 songs on Spotify; reached No. 1 on Apple music album in 83 countries; and wore the crown for being one of top 7 songs on Apple Music.

Pusha T “Daytona” (Image Source: Def Jam Recordings)

Pusha T’s Daytona album released on May 25, 2018, featured late singer Whitney Houston’s drug-covered bathroom counter. Disturbing. Dark. Hateful. As a result, this writer refuses to even listen to the music. Kanye West executive produced the album and reportedly paid $85,000 to license the photo to use as the cover art. Pusha T shifts blame for use of the photo to West. In an interview with Angie Martinez, he says, West called him a “1 a.m., my phone rings, no caller ID.[West says,] ‘Hey, I think we should change the artwork, and I like this other artwork.’ I said, ‘hey, I don’t want to pay for that, and I wasn’t even gonna ask you to pay for that … this is what people need to see to go along with that music.”

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