For every best list that has come out this year-end there is a worst list and our friends at Idolator have pulled out all the stops for this one. While their special skill is reviewing music to it’s fullest, they admit that sometimes they are distracted by the artists’ awful choice of artwork for their album or mix tape.
This year, the crew have assembled the 10 Worst Album Covers of 2011, an honor that MGMT received last year for their album, Congratulations. This year, there are a few albums I absolutely agree with on the list and a few that have me scratching my head. So, I’ll present Idolator’s list below with my own thoughts on each album cover. Let’s begin.
10. Chris Brown, “F.A.M.E.”
My Thoughts: I actually like this album cover a lot. While I think that the rainbow use is a little bubble gum for Chris Brown, the concept and idea was great in my opinion. This is also one of my favorite albums from 2011. “Beautiful People” is still on repeat for me.
Their Reason: Between Chris Brown’s dour expression and the cartoon rainbow drippings, are we sure this isn’t the cover for Chris Brown’s unreleased Fame comic book? This is about on their level of artistic achievement.
9. Lady Gaga, “Born This Way”
My Thoughts: I agree, I thought this album cover was a bit atrocious. There had been a few other covers that had leaked online that I thought were 110% better than this one. I know that Gaga is channeling her inner 80’s child hardcore lately but this was a little extreme.
Their Reason: Although Gaga’s cover art is knowingly campy, we still get the creeps everytime we look at Mother Monster as a motorcycle. This is like the movie poster for some sci-fi B-movie from the ’80s.
8. Leona Lewis, “Glassheart”
My Thoughts: I agree with Idolator once again. I thought this photo seemed a little out-of-focus and the stars seemed a little clown-like for me, (unless that is what she was going for). There are a few other photos that Leona has from this same photo set that are WAY better. Let’s hope when the album gets it’s full release in 2012, they pick a new one.
Their Reason: Leona’s album was pushed back to 2012 after her cover art was already revealed, but we refuse to leave this cover art off our Worst list. If she’s smart, she’ll swap out this unfortunate shot for a more flattering (and color corrected) photo. And get rid of those two stars, too.
7. Daughtry, “Break The Spell”
My Thoughts: With an album title like “Break The Spell”, you’d think the band would have opted for a darker image with light breaking through or something like that. This photo looks like a lost “LOST” promo shot. Also, that band member on the left needs to see a chiropractor, stat.
Their Reason: What are Daughtry and Co. doing here? Where they are? What’s that thing? Why are they all leaning like that? Whose 10-year-old neice photoshopped this together? So many questions.
6. Robin Thicke, “Love After War”
My Thoughts: I TOTALLY disagree on this one. I love this album cover and think that it is so unique from a lot of covers that are out there. Even though it looks like someone’s white board scribbles turned album cover, I think the addition of the blue eyes is a nice touch and not creepy at all.
Their Reason: We love Robin and his smooth love tunes, but this half-assed drawing is doing him no favors. (And how dare they make Robin’s precious baby blues totally creepy!)
5. Blink 182, “Neighborhoods”
My Thoughts: In Grade 7 art class, we did a project on perspectives and had to draw a city street using this technique. This album cover reminds me of that and makes me wonder if a Grade 7 art student got an A+ on this little art piece. I do agree that the shout out to DJ AM is nice.
Their Reason: Would it have killed Blink-182 to add some color to the cover of their first LP in eight years? This looks incomplete at best, and at worst, is a total yawn. (We appreciate the shout-out to the late DJ AM, though.)
4. T-Pain, “RevolveR”
My Thoughts: Idolator hit the nail on the head a little bit with this cover. I feel like this portrays the image of extreme vanity. Because 1 T-Pain wasn’t annoying enough, now we have multiple T-Pain’s. Do they ALL speak in auto-tuned harmony?
Their Reason: “We’d like to begin the meeting of the Comic Book Villains And Movie Serial Killers Book Club! Did everyone read chapters three through seven of Eat Pray Love?”
3. Limp Bizkit, “Gold Cobra”
My Thoughts: LOL! Right on. Also, was anyone else thinking the same thing I was? “Limp Bizkit is still making music?” It doesn’t help that one of the songs on this album also hit EW’s Worst Songs of 2011. I think it’s time to start over.
Their Reason: The Kardashian sisters have never looked better.
2. Lil Kim, “Black Friday”
My Thoughts: Whoa. This is the biggest diss of the year if I ever saw one. Slicing Nicki’s “Pink Friday” head off with a samurai sword is a bit harsh. However, I think that it was nothing but a swing-and-a-miss. I agree, they both need to get over this feud because let’s be honest, no one cares.
Their Reason: This may be only the runner-up for the year’s worst cover art, but it’s definitely the most desperate. Kim couldn’t keep away from Nicki Minaj pot shots in her songs, and even her mixtape album cover attempted to slay Nicki’s iconic Pink Friday imagery. Try again, Kim. (Actually, please stop this pointless beef once and for all — the both of you!)
1. Chris Brown, “Boy In Detention”
My Thoughts: I didn’t even know this mix tape existed. While it could be categorized under the same art capability as Robin Thicke’s, it doesn’t come close to measuring up. As Idolator put it, it seems like doodles found between the binder pages of a Grade 11’s homework. Better luck next year Breezy.
Their Reason: We began with Chris Brown’s F.A.M.E., and we end with the cover of his mixtape, which looks like it was literally drawn while bored in detention. We’re assuming this cover art gives us some insight into what Brown holds near and dear to his heart: sneakers, women with big booties, and skulls smoking doobies. We can’t believe we’re saying this, but Breezy should stick to the graffiti motif.