The Tubes: A Look at Their Vibrant and Provocative Album Covers
The Tubes, a San Francisco-based rock band, lit up the music scene during the late 1970s and early 1980s with their unique sound and daring stage performances. However, it wasn’t just their music that caught people’s attention; The Tubes’ album covers were just as captivating and provocative. In this article, we take a closer look at the band’s album covers and why they were so memorable in the history of music.
Firstly, let’s talk about the album cover that started it all – The Tubes’ eponymous debut album in 1975. The cover looks like a movie poster, with the band members dressed up in over-the-top costumes and posing against a cityscape. What makes this cover stand out is the vivid and bold colors, which were a trademark of The Tubes’ album art. This cover perfectly encapsulates the band’s quirky and theatrical style, setting the tone for their future releases.
Moving on to their second album, “Young and Rich” (1976), we see The Tubes becoming even more daring with their cover art. The cover shows a blonde woman with a tight-fitting dress and long legs, lying down seductively with a man’s hand reaching out to grab her. This cover was deemed controversial at the time and not suitable for display at certain record stores. However, it perfectly captured the implications of the band’s name and their risqué approach to rock music.
The Tubes continued to push boundaries with their next album, “Now” (1977). The cover features a motorbike crashing through a television screen, which was a nod to the band’s commentary on society’s obsession with mass media. The cover art was a collaboration between The Tubes and legendary artist John Van Hamersveld, who is most famous for designing the cover of The Beatles’ “Magical Mystery Tour” album. The result was a visually stunning and thought-provoking image.
Moving further down the line, we come to “The Completion Backward Principle” (1981). The cover features a striking image of a humanoid figure with a TV for a head, sitting on top of a pile of smashed televisions. The cover art was created by Prairie Prince, the band’s drummer, who is also a celebrated artist. The imagery perfectly encapsulates the album’s themes of the power of mass media and its influence on society.
Finally, we come to “Love Bomb” (1985), the last album The Tubes released for quite some time. The cover art once again features a woman in a suggestive pose, wearing a red dress and sitting on a bed of pink feathers. What makes this cover stand out is the use of montage, with different images overlaying each other to create a complex and visually intriguing composition. The cover was designed by celebrated artist H.R. Giger, who is most famous for designing the alien in the “Alien” movie franchise.
In conclusion, The Tubes’ album covers were more than just promotional materials for their music. They were striking visual statements that perfectly encapsulated the band’s theatrical and provocative approach to rock. The band’s use of vivid colors, bold imagery, and risqué themes set them apart from their contemporaries and still stand out as some of the most memorable album covers in the history of music. With their unique style and cutting-edge creativity, The Tubes left an indelible mark on the music scene and continue to inspire artists to this day.
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