It is not unusual in the world of punk rock for musicians to be equally creative in other mediums, particularly when it comes to graphic design and illustration. Jamie Morrison is probably most known for playing bass in The Arteries and Pale Angels, but he is also an excellent designer and illustrator. He’s produced record sleeves, gig posters and t-shirts for loads of great bands including; Above Them, Bangers, Bear Trade, Dead to Me, Lemuria, Sam Russo and, of course, his own bands too.
As it states on Jamie’s website: ‘Growing up playing in a punk band in constant need of poster and t-shirt designs, his ideas were put into action to save waiting for someone else to do the work.’ And why not do the work yourself when you can produce such awesome designs?
One of my favourite albums of the year so far in terms of its cover design is Water Lane by Above Them. Obviously I’m a fan of its musical content too but there’s something that really strikes me about the record sleeve design as well. Water Lane is a road in Pontefract, Yorkshire, where the band are from and the image on the front of the album is of the railway bridge on said road. I’m a big fan of designs that use a simple colour palette and flat, bold blocks of colour – in this case, three varying shades of teal-green. I definitely get the impression that Jamie has a certain slightly muted set of colours that he tends to stick with – see the images above – and I like it. A lot of Jamie’s designs are screen printed which is the perfect method for blocks of colour.
I bought the album on vinyl recently and it’s lovely. Matte record sleeves are so much better than shiny ones! You can buy it too from the wonderful Specialist Subject.
Also make sure you check out Jamie’s print shop where you can buy some lovely posters, including this London Calling beauty. (Pretty relevant as my first ‘Art of Punk’ blog post featured the original London Calling album cover!)