Have you ever bought an album just for the cover? How did it turn out?

Everyone knows not to judge an album by its cover. But sometimes we can't resist the visual allure created to tempt the unwary shopper. Have you ever bought an album just for the cover? How did it turn out?

Have you ever bought an album just for the cover? How did it turn out?
Yes and it turned out great
69% (138 votes)
Yes, but it was a disaster
17% (34 votes)
Never tempted!
14% (29 votes)
Total votes: 201

Jar's picture

Commercial Suicide by Alpha Safari sounded even better than it looked.

Harry Lavo's picture

A Julie London album, back when I was in college. It was the sex appeal. Mediocre singing.

Steve in NM's picture

Ah. those damn enticing covers! For the most part they turned out to be duds. But I've also found a couple of tasty treats that I probably wouldn't have heard if I hadn't taken a chance on 'em.

James's picture

Whipped Cream and Other Delights great album. Puts most Stereophile staff in short pants or dream stage.

Gary's picture

Oh God, yes. Also, when I worked in college radio, we got way too many in the mail each day to listen to, so I'd only pick the ones that had the best artwork to audition.

rj's picture

Throbbing Gristle's 20 Jazz Funk Greats—bought in spite of the title.

xanthia01@gmail.com's picture

A few times. Some have been good, some have not, but they all have one thing in common: The artist is always exceedingly attractive.

Rich, Chicago's picture

Lovedrive from the Scorpions. There is a European cover and the prudish US cover—guess which is better? It's a great album regardless!

Craig in NJ's picture

It was easy to do years ago when vinyl was cheap. Some old vinyl goodies: Blodwyn Pig (1st), Savoy Brown (A Step Further),Mott The Hoople (1st). Used CDs: Brad (1st) & Jade Ell (Promises and Prayer).

Alex Gibbs's picture

The Psychedelic Furs debut. Never heard of them but bought for pink dayglo cover. Still love it!

Chris's picture

Oh, that Blink 182 nurse.

Douglas Bowker's picture

Often and 80% of the time, it's a good bet.

Mark W's picture

Brain Salad Surgery by Emerson Lake and Palmer was a big hit with me. Awesome cover. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brain_Salad_Surgery

Al Earz's picture

I was a great cover and no one can see the bullet hole in the wall now!

dan coffee's picture

Many, many, times. That is how I pick out trance music CDs.

JimBob's picture

Peter Brown had an album back in the 1980s with a song "Do You Want to Get Funky with Me" that had an interesting silhouette. Only two great songs on the album—the rest were average.

Dismord's picture

Living With Lesbians featuring The Lesbian Power Authority on Woman's Wax Works LP A002. How did it turn out? More horrible than the cover, which would have to be the scariest LP cover ever.

Cihangir Güzey's picture

Jethro Tull's Thick as a Brick 25th Anniversary CD. It has the same newspaper that the original LP edition had (plus some bonus tracks). Album and newspaper are great.

Michael's picture

It was the Joy Division album Closer. If you haven't seen it, check it out.

Lars Ravn's picture

When I was 13 I bought Electric Ladyland because there were naked women on the cover. It made me a lifelong Jimi Hendrix fan

G Anderson's picture

Back in the '70s in college, we used to go to the record shop and buy based on the cover—90% were pretty good. MeatLoaf; Bat out of Hell; Nectar: Remember the Future, etc.

Michael Lankton's picture

This is also how they used to sucker you into renting really bad horror and sci-fi movies. The VHS boxes would have some really great art that probably represented most of that movie's budget, and you went home with an unwatchable stinker. The '70s were full of great album art with bland music in the sleeve. Formerly great artists feeding their coke habit off good cover art and their previous reputation.

sdecker's picture

As an avid motorcyclist, I ran across Prefab Sprout's Two Wheels Good LP in 1985 as a new release at a record store. Never even heard of the band, but liked the title and cover. To this day it remains one of the best-crafted collection of pop songs in my record library. And its sonics are as good as the best releases of today. There are probably other examples too, but this was a win-win all around from an impulse buy based on the cover photo and suggestive title.

Andrew Chester's picture

Hugh Masekela: Home Is Where The Music Is. When I saw the cover, I thought it was dreadful which in a perverse way was what attracted me. I'm still not keen on it, but the music is superb township jazz. Recently released on CD, so close your eyes and enjoy.

Francisco's picture

Patricia Barber's Nightclub on SACD. Both the cover and the title caught my attention. I then went on to buy Modern Cool, this time for the music.

kiah_V's picture


Daren Williams's picture

About 60/40 great/terrible really! More great than terrible.

David Potts's picture

I am a digital music lover but miss the artwork of the LP albums that I bought as a teenager.

Pradeep's picture

I have bought a lot of albums for the cover. Here are a few which immediately come to my mind. Even though some of the albums are very famous, I had never heard about these artists/albums at that time as I was very young and in India: Pink Floyd: The Wall, I was visiting a record store when I was in my ninth grade and saw this album on the rack and I had to buy it immediately. To this day I am a great PF fan. I dont think there is/will be a better rock artist. Chris Rea: Auberge, I was captivated by the painting of a Caterham super seven on a country road. To me this is one of the best album covers. Again Chris Rea is an all time favouite artist for me. Recently I bought two used LPs: Mason Williams: Sharepickers and Harvey Mason: Funk in a Mason Jar, just because both the albums had a Mason jar in the cover. Mason Williams was awsome, I did not like Harvey Mason.

audio-sleuth@comcast.net's picture

Any of the cover art done by Jim Flora. Mambo Cats is a work of art on the cover; the music is lame. I have it framed and never play it.