AlbumArtExchange Blog: Déjà Vu Archives

Déjà Vu Category

Déjà Vu: Usher vs. Tank

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One of my favorite album covers of 2010 is Now or Never by R&B singer and songwriter Tank. The tightly cropped photographic portrait of the shirtless artist sporting a scruffy beard is unusually sensual for a male artist. It appears that fellow R&B singer Usher is attempting something similar with the cover of his forthcoming album, Looking 4 Myself.

While the two covers share a similar concept, they clearly demonstrate what causes one to have a great deal more impact. The first flaw in the Usher cover is the tank top that can be seen in his portrait. It would have much better if the photographer had simply had him take it off. It really interferes with the composition. The second problem is the flat contrast. The third and most important issue is the lack of expression on Usher's face. In this case, there is absolutely no question about which one did it best.

Usher - Looking 4 Myself Deluxe Edition (2012)

Posted by: Joseebus
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Tank - Now or Never (2010)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Marilyn Manson vs. Tiny Tim

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With apologies to Marilyn Manson fans, the first thing that I thought of when I saw the cover of Manson's forthcoming album, Born Villain, was the cover of Tiny Tim's 1980 album Chameleon. Born Villain is scheduled to be released on May 1, 2012.

"On tiptoe, through the tulips, with a machine gun. Won't you murder me?"

Marilyn Manson - Born Villain (2012)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Tiny Tim - Chameleon (1980)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Neon Trees vs. Glasvegas

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The cover for the forthcoming album Picture Show by Neon Trees is almost identical to the one used for the oddly named 2011 release EUPHORIC /// HEARTBREAK \\\ by Glasvegas. Picture Show is scheduled to be released on April 17, 2012.

Neon Trees - Picture Show (2012)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Glasvegas - EUPHORIC /// HEARTBREAK \\\ (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Morning Parade vs. Maroon 5

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Last year, I had a déjà vu moment with Lupe Fiasco's album Lasers (right). At the time, I pointed out that using a neon light sculpture for an album cover is not an original concept and that there are dozens of recent examples.

I compared the Lupe Fiasco album to Disco Four, the 2007 remix compilation by Pet Shop Boys. Like the cover for Lasers, Disco Four features a sculpture that illustrates the title of the album. Lasers has a sculpture of the word "LOSERS" with an anarchy symbol painted over the "O" and Disco Four has the number four in a similar color scheme.

The latest Déjà Vu pair includes a neon sculpture and a back-lit wall that both prominently feature the letter "M" as a representation of the band's name. The more recent of the two is the self-titled album by British band Morning Parade. It features a neon sculpture of the initials of the band's name. It is very similar to the Lupe Fiasco and Pet Shop Boys covers. The second cover in the pair is for Maroon 5's 2007 album It Won't Be Soon Before Long. The back-lit "M" was also used for the covers of the Makes Me Wonder singles and a b-sides collection.

Morning Parade - Morning Parade (2012)

Posted by: Aequi
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Maroon 5 - It Won't Be Soon Before Long (2007)

Posted by: Foundation
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Déjà Vu: Monica vs. Cassie

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The cover for the forthcoming album New Life by Monica is very similar to the cover for the 2006 single Me & U by pop/R&B singer Cassie Ventura. There have been countless album covers  that feature a female artist with hair covering one eye. However, this particular Déjà Vu set also includes similar facial expressions and lighting. New Life is scheduled to be released on April 10, 2012.

Monica - New Life (2012)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Cassie - Me & U (2006)

Posted by: badduck
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Déjà Vu: Narrows vs. Les Baxter

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AAX contributor Vocephus had a déjà vu moment with the album cover for Painted by Seattle mathcore band Narrows. The photograph of a woman with a painted face and flowers in her hair is reminiscent of the one used for Les Baxter's 1959 album African Jazz.  

Narrows - Painted (2012)

Posted by: shady_08
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Les Baxter - African Jazz (1959)

Posted by: zbop
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Déjà Vu: The Used vs. U2

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This déjà vu moment was brought to us by American rock band The Used. The cover for their forthcoming album, Vulnerable, is very similar to the cover for U2's 1980 debut album. I think the U2 cover is vastly superior. The smears of blood in the face of the boy on the cover of from The Used is a bit too much. The boy on the U2 cover could not look more vulnerable and innocent.

Vulnerable is scheduled to be released on March 27, 2012 by Hopeless Records.

The Used - Vulnerable (2012)

Posted by: zeefritz
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U2 - Boy (1980)

Posted by: Music Hog
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This déjà vu moment is more of a warning to art directors who think that putting an aging pop star in a short dress and using three poses on an album cover is original. Mariah Carey did it. Whitney Houston did it. And now Madonna is the latest to appear on a cover in triplicate.

Madonna's single Give Me All Your Luvin' featuring Nicki Minaj & M.I.A. is scheduled to be released on February 3, 2012, three days before her Super Bowl halftime performance.

Madonna - Give Me All Your Luvin' (2012)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Whitney Houston - Million Dollar Bill (2009)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Mariah Carey - Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel (2009)

Posted by: Music Hog
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Déjà Vu: The Ames Brothers vs. Esquivel

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AAX gallery contributor Vocephus wrote about two album covers from 1958 that gave him a déjà vu moment.

I ran across The Ames Brothers "Destination Moon" record (for 20 whole cents) yesterday and it certainly reminded me of Esquivel's "Other Worlds, Other Sounds" in it's theme, but it wasn't until I got it home and compared them that I realized it's the exact same moon painting. The Ames Bros. record adds the rocketship, the Earth (I presume) floating in the background, and has the brothers sorting through "moon rocks" which look suspiciously more like pieces of broken concrete.

They both hit the stands in 1958 and though the Ames' have the earlier catalog number, who knows who was really "first" with the idea. In any case, they were both just two of dozens of space-themed records churned out in the late '50s and early '60s.

With GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich talking about going to the moon and invading Cuba, it certainly seems like a little bit of that earlier era is returning. Thanks to Vocephus, the album covers look as fresh as ever.

The Ames Brothers - Destination Moon (1958)

Posted by: Vocephus
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Esquivel - Other Worlds Other Sounds (1958)

Posted by: Vocephus
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Déjà Vu: Van Halen vs. Commodores

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I have received several email messages from readers about using the following album covers for a Déjà Vu article. Since I do not have a "Blatant Rip Off" category to place the cover for the forthcoming Van Halen album, Déjà Vu will have to suffice. Van Halen's A Different Kind of Truth is scheduled to be released on February 7, 2012.

Commodores - Movin' On (1975)
 
Posted by: ciernett
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Van Halen - A Different Kind of Truth (2012)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Scorpions vs. 8Ball

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The cover for the forthcoming Scorpions album Comeblack has an uncanny resemblance to that of the 2009 album by rapper 8Ball. Both feature illustrations of chrome automobile emblems on a black background.

Scorpions - Comeblack (2012)

Posted by: zeefritz
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8Ball - Memphis All-Stars: Cars, Clubs & Strip Clubs (2009)

Posted by: sampa1
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Déjà Vu: Neon Trees vs. Goldfrapp and Cut Copy

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Here is a triple déjà vu moment delivered by the forthcoming single Everybody Talks by Neon Trees. The artwork has striking similarities to both Goldfrapp's Ride a White Horse and Cut Copy's 2004 album, Bright Like Neon Love. 

The heart-shaped sunglasses are unusual enough to spark a comparison between the singles. The red lips and the text on the glasses is more like the Cut Copy album. It is also interesting that the word "neon" is associated with two of the featured works.

Neon Trees - Everybody Talks (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Goldfrapp - Ride a White Horse (2007)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Cut Copy - Bright Like Neon Love (2004)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Gloria Estefan vs. Josie Cotton

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There's no question that Josie Cotton did a much better job with the "girl in a convertible" concept than Gloria Estefan's recent attempt. What, Gloria? No fishnet stockings? Even without the appropriate leggings, this was still a déjà vu moment. (And I think Santana's mom would definitely wear fishnets.)

Josie Cotton - Convertible Music (1982)
 
Posted by: Vocephus
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Glora Estefan - Hotel Nacional Remixes (2011)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: The Hellacopters vs. Black Sabbath

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This Déjà Vu pairing was suggested by AAX contributor Vocephus. The first cover is for Heads Off, the seventh and last album released by the Swedish rock band The Hellacopters. The second is Never Say Die!, the eighth studio album by British heavy metal band Black Sabbath. It was released in 1978.

The Hellacopters - Heads Off (2008)

Posted by: all4rock
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Black Sabbath - Never Say Die! (1978)

Posted by: andovian
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Déjà Vu: Thalia vs. Cut Copy

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When I created the Déjà Vu category for the blog several years ago, my inspiration was the two album covers featured below. Unfortunately, there were not good examples of them in the AAX gallery at the time and I simply forgot about them.

When Lunada, the tenth studio album by Mexican recording artist Thalia, was released in 2008, it created a controversy regarding the cover art. The cover created by art director and graphic designer Lisette Lorenzo is almost identical to that of Australian electronic band Cut Copy's 2004 album Bright Like Neon Love.

This is probably the most jaw-dropping example of an album cover that is either a blatant rip off or an amazing coincidence. So many elements are the same in both covers that it is difficult to believe that the earlier cover did not serve as the inspiration for the other. However, when similar elements are also common (such as a scene being reflected in sunglasses and bright red lips) it is more likely that very similar designs were created independently. You be the judge.

Cut Copy - Bright Like Neon Love (2004)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Thalia - Lunada (2008)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Robin Thicke vs. Frank Sinatra

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When I saw the cover for Robin Thicke's forthcoming album Love After War earlier this week, I had a déjà vu moment involving Frank Sinatra. Perhaps it is the style of the painting of Thicke with deep blue eyes that did it. Love After War is scheduled for release on December 27, 2011.

Robin Thicke - Love After War (2011)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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Frank Sinatra - Moonlight Sinatra (1965)
 
Posted by: Grem1in
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Déjà Vu: The Saturdays vs. Orleans

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Here is a Déjà Vu set that is really more like a storyboard for a 1970s porno flick. I imagine the guys on the cover of Orlean's 1976 album Waking and Dreaming staring across the rec room of a hippie nudist camp and seeing the women on the cover of the forthcoming The Saturdays album On Your Radar. "Hey, ladies! How you doin'?" The ladies are NOT impressed.

Orleans - Waking and Dreaming (1976)

Posted by: Tim Barron
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The Saturdays - On Your Radar (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Grouplove vs. Manic Street Preachers

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Here is a déjà vu moment that may be a bit of a stretch. However, the cover for Never Trust a Happy Song by Grouplove immediately reminded me of Journal for Plague Lovers by Manic Street Preachers. Both feature paintings of children with creepy blank  facial expressions and what appear to be bloody injuries. The child on the Grouplove album only has a bloody eye, but it is almost as disturbing as the earlier cover.

Grouplove - Never Trust a Happy Song (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Manic Street Preachers - Journal for Plague Lovers (2009)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Paramore vs. No Doubt

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This is a déjà vu moment that I had quite a few years ago and forgot about until I read that Greyson Chance was inspired by the cover of Paramore's 2007 debut album Riot! for the design of the piano on his recent album cover. Of course, Paramore was probably inspired by the design of the 2001 No Doubt album Rock Steady.

No Doubt - Rock Steady (2001)

Posted by: anetode
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Paramore - Riot! (2007)

Posted by: Foundation
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Déjà Vu: The Treatment vs. Blink 182

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Blink 182 set the bar very high for the "naughty nurse" theme with their 1999 album, Enema of the State. This Might Hurt, the debut album from U.K. rock band The Treatment, comes close and adds a new twist with a chainsaw. However, it does fall short to the features porn star Janine Lindemulder in a nurses uniform and that scary rubber glove.

The Treatment - This Might Hurt (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Blink 182 - Enema of the State (1999)

Posted by: Foundation
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Déjà Vu: Wyatt Cenac vs. Steve Martin

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On the cover of his 1977 album Let's Get Small, comedian Steve Martin appeared wearing a Groucho nose, a balloon hat, and a arrow through the head gag prop. For his forthcoming album Comedy Person, Wyatt Cenac can be seen wearing the arrow through the head prop. Cenac's album is scheduled to be released on August 23, 2011.

Steve Martin - Let's Get Small (1977)

Posted by: sonicjihad
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Wyatt Cenac - Comedy Person (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Totimoshi vs. ABC

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This Déjà Vu installment is really more of a storyboard for what I would like to see happen to all of the "brave" men who torture bulls to death for an audience. The cover for Avenger, the forthcoming album by American alternative rock band Totimoshi, is a perfect companion to that of ABC's 1983 album Beauty Stab.

ABC - Beauty Stab (1983)
 
Posted by: Scott
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Totimoshi - Avenger (2011)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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This is our first quadruple Déjà Vu! A few months ago, I wrote about three albums that feature a gold-color spine that resembles those of the popular Little Golden Book children's books. Now, there is a fourth, Lil' Golden Book by New Zealand recording artist Princess Chelsea. The CD includes a 15-page Little Golden Booklet designed by Brad Fafejta.

The album is preceded by Social Distortion's Hard Times and Nursery Rhymes, The Pauses' debut album A Cautionary Tale, and Fishin' for Woos by Bowling for Soup.

It would be interesting to know if these four designs are the result of imitation or simply a coincidence (which seems unlikely to me). The next art director who uses the Little Golden Book concept should be forced read at a local preschool for several hours. It is a cute concept, but one that should probably be avoided for at least a decade.

Princess Chelsea - Lil' Golden Book (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Social Distortion - Hard Times and Nursery Rhymes (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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The Pauses - A Cautionary Tale (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz

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Bowling for Soup - Fishin' for Woos (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Apathy vs. Basement Jaxx

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Here are two album covers featuring an albino gorilla. Snowflake was the only albino gorilla known to science. He lived at the Barcelona Zoo in Catalonia, Spain from 1966 until his death in 2003. He was thought to have been between 38 and 40 years old when he was euthanized after being diagnosed with skin cancer.

Snowflake was discovered clinging to the back of his mother after she was slaughtered by hunters. He was then purchased by a representative of the Barcelona Zoo, where he soon became one of the most popular exhibits.

I prefer the gentle-looking portrait of Snowflake that appears on the cover of Rooty by the Basement Jaxx to the ferocious gorilla who is being called a "honkey" on the cover of the forthcoming album by rapper Apathy. While Snowflake's skin was white, I think he had a lot in common with other captives who were stolen from Africa and forced to live in captivity.

Apathy - Honkey Kong (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Basement Jaxx - Rooty (2001)

Posted by: Music Hog
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Déjà Vu: Ace Hood vs. DMX

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The cover for rapper Ace Hood's forthcoming album Blood, Sweat & Tears is certain to spark a feeling of déjà vu for anyone familiar with the 1998 album Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood by DMX. The only question is "Who did it better?" Blood, Sweat & Tears is scheduled to be released on August 9, 2011.

Ace Hood - Blood, Sweat & Tears (2011)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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DMX - Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood (1998)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Example vs. Peter Murphy

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I have to admit that seeing people with one side of their faces in black reminds me of a certain original Star Trek episode starring Frank Gorshin (right). When I saw the cover for Peter Murphy's album Ninth, I came close to writing about the similarity between Murphy's makeup and that of Gorshin.

Now, the cover for the forthcoming album by English singer and rapper Example (Elliot Gleave) has also made me have a Star Trek flashback. While his face is not actually painted black on one side and white on the other, Example's does look quite a bit like both Murphy and Gorshin on the cover of Playing in the Shadows. The album is scheduled to be released on September 4, 2011.

Example - Playing in the Shadows (2011)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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Peter Murphy - Ninth (2011)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Neuropa vs. Yazoo

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This déjà vu moment features mannequins in a warehouse on album covers created 28 years apart. I do not know whether or not the cover for Plastique People by Australian synthpop band Neuropa was Yazoo's (Yaz in the U.S.) 1982 album Upstairs at Eric's. However, the similarities are striking.

Neuropa - Plastique People (2010)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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Yazoo - Upstairs at Erics (1982)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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As I have written before, these déjà vu moments always seem to occur in groups of three. The third for this week is the cover for Maroon 5's latest single, Move Like Jagger, and the new compilation of music by Joy Division and New Order.

Maroon 5 featuring Chistina Aquilera - Move Like Jagger (2011)

Posted by: silver
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Joy Division / New Order - Total (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Golden Glow vs. Pearl Jam

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The cover for Golden Glow's album Tender Is the Night is virtually identical to that of Pearl Jam's 1996 album No Code. Tender Is the Night was released yesterday.

Golden Glow - Tender Is the Night (2011)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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Pearl Jam - No Code (1996)
 
Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Eleanor McEvoy vs. Neil Young

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This déjà vu moment was suggested by AAX gallery moderator gege. These album covers were created 36 years apart. We could probably do an article on album covers that feature beach umbrellas. I can think of at least one more, Tweekend by The Crystal Method.

Eleanor McEvoy - I'd Rather Go Blonde (2011)

Posted by: Aequi
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Neil Young - On the Beach (1974)

Posted by: gege
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Déjà Vu: Stuyvesant vs. Weezer

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Here is one of those déjà vu moments that crosses over into "blatant ripoff" territory. Perhaps the cover for New Jersey rock band Stuyvesant's forthcoming album is meant to be a tribute to Weezer's 2009 album Raditude. Fret Sounds is scheduled to be released on June 21, 2011.

Stuyvesant - Fret Sounds (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Weezer - Raditude (2009)

Posted by: Foundation
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Déjà Vu: Brother vs. Paul McCartney

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Album covers featuring a photograph of a storefront are not uncommon. There are many notable examples such as the Beastie Boys' 1989 album Paul's Boutique and Paul McCartney's 11th studio album Run Devil Run.

The latest example is the cover for Famous First Words, the debut album by British indie band Brother. The cover is similar to that of the McCartney album in that the album title appears as the sign above the door of the business.

Run Devil Run is scheduled to be re-issued on June 28, 2011. It will be available on CD and as a digital download. Famous First Words will be available as an import on August 9 and was produced by Stephen Street.

Paul McCartney - Run Devil Run (1999)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Brother - Famous First Words (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Déjà Vu: Sebastian vs. Suede

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There are dozens of noteworthy album covers that feature a couple kissing. This déjà vu moment involves two album covers that were listed as new releases at the same time, Total by Sebastian and the reissue of the 1993 self-titled album by Suede.

Sebastian - Total (2011)

Posted by: zeefritz
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Suede - Suede (1993)

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Here's a colorful and interesting déjà vu set. Whilst there are differences between all three, the similarities are striking. Besides the obviously nude women, the covers for both Afghan Whigs' and Bullets and Octane's albums feature a mother and baby, while both In the Mouth of the Young and Tigermilk feature suckling youngsters, even if Belle and Sebastian used a stuffed Sumatran Tiger by the name of Tigger (by the looks of it). Or maybe it's a young Charlie Sheen. I also have to wonder if the baby used by Bullets and Octane doesn't grow up to be a "Fast & Furious" Vin Diesel wannabe.

I like the contrast of colors and music. Red for the alternative rock and soul, yellow for the punk hard rock, and blue for the indie folk pop. I could almost have added Red Hot Chili Peppers' Mother's Milk (1989) to the mix (the model used is the gorgeous Alaine Dawn), but perhaps that's stretching it a little too far. And in Fijación Oral Vol. 1, Shakira is clothed (*sigh*) and the baby isn't having a feed.

Afghan Whigs - Congregation (1992)

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Bullets and Octane - In the Mouth of the Young (2006)

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Belle and Sebastian - Tigermilk (1996)

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Déjà Vu: Akon vs. Spyro Gyra

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AAX user Gulickson recently had a déjà vu moment that involves an unlikely pair, R&B artist Akon and jazz fusion band Spyro Gyra. The cover for Spyro Gyra's 2007 album Good to Go-Go uses the same image used for the cover of Akon's 2005 single Belly Dancer (Bananza).

Akon - Belly Dancer (Bananza) (2005)

Posted by: revghost
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Spyro Gyra - Good to Go-Go (2007)

Posted by: Gulickson
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The album covers for albums by The Beatles are perhaps the most parodied of all time. The 1991 self-titled debut album by the American rap group Young Black Teenagers is one of several made to look like With The Beatles over the last 48 years.

Young Black Teenagers - Young Black Teenagers (1991)

Posted by: zeefritz
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The Beatles - With The Beatles (1963)

Posted by: FunBrownSugar
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Déjà Vu: Aerosmith vs. Autograph

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2001's Just Push Play is the 13th studio album by rock band Aerosmith. It is also the title of the third single from that album. The cover features a gynoid in a recreation of the classic shot of Marilyn Monroe's dress blowing up around her legs from the film The Seven Year Itch (1955).

The cover was designed by Hajime Sorayama (Official Site containing adult artistic/explicit nudity, or Current Site for those under age). His work, Sexy Robot, was published in 1983, and made his organic robotic forms famous.

Aerosmith - Just Push Play (2001)

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"inner gatefold" posted by: Mediocrates image

Buy Now Autograph was an American glam metal band from the mid 1980s. Back in 1985, their second album That's The Stuff, was released under the RCA label. A different version of the album surfaced later in 1986, featuring a blue cover with slightly different artwork. In 2002, a remastered version of the original red cover album was released by Spitfire Records. This was a clear continuation of the artwork for their first studio album Sign in Please.

Autograph - That's the Stuff (1985) thumb Buy Now   Autograph - That's the Stuff (1986) thumb Buy Now

Autograph - Sign in Please (1984)

Posted by: zeefritz image

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Margo Nahas is credited for the artwork or "cover illustration" for Sign In Please and the original red That's the Stuff, while Hajime Sorayama, who has clearly influenced the lot, gets the credit for the 1986 blue version. Jay Vigon and Richard Seireeni (of Vigon & Seireeni) get mentions on all three for either Art Design, Art Direction or Cover Design.

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Déjà Vu: Girls Aloud vs. X-Ray Spex

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X-Ray Spex were an English punk band from London. During their 1976-79 active years (they reformed three more times in 1991, 1995-96 and 2008), they were "deliberate underachievers" and only squeezed out five singles and a solitary album! However, their first single Oh Bondage, Up Yours! is now acknowledged as a punk rock classic, and the album Germ Free Adolescents is widely acclaimed as one of the greatest albums of all time.

Members of X-Ray Spex included Poly Styrene (vocals) and Lora Logic (saxophone), both of whom left the music industry for a spell in the '80s to run away and join the Hare Krishna movement. Those were the days... *sigh*.

X-Ray Spex - Germ Free Adolescents (1978)

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Regular AAX gallery contributor extraordinaire Vocephus, who did the scans, tells me that he thinks it goes (from left to right) BP Hurding (drums), Rudi Thompson (sax), Poly Stryene (vox), Jak Airport (guitar), and Paul Deen (bass) although "that could be completely wrong"! And he told me that Lora Logic left the band after Live at the Roxy to go to school, so she's not on the cover. The back cover is exactly how you would expect to see the front cover if you walked around and looked at it from behind. I like that! And the rebellious mismatched socks.

Germ Free Adolescents (back cover)

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Buy Now Girls Aloud released the single Biology in 2005 from their third studio album Chemistry. The girls in the test tubes (from left to right based on my powers of observation) are Nadine Coyle, Nicola Roberts, Kimberley Walsh, Cheryl Cole and Sarah Harding. Why oh why couldn't they have all been wet and under water like X-Ray Spex? Just joking. Their poses remind me of the cover for The Beatles' album Help!

Considered one of Girls Aloud's signature songs, The Guardian referred to Biology as "the best pop single of the last decade." Ahem .. sorry... just clearing my throat. Honest! Biology was Girls Aloud's tenth top ten UK hit. Now can someone please let out the girl in test tube number two.

Girls Aloud - Biology (2005)

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Déjà Vu: Lady Gaga vs. Depeche Mode

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Here's a déjà vu with a strange twist that is appropriate for Easter. The cover art for Lady Gaga's new single, Judas, and Depeche Mode's Personal Jesus 2011 both feature photographs of images on a computer monitor. Perhaps the songs would make an interesting mash up.

Lady Gaga - Judas (2011)

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Depeche Mode - Personal Jesus 2011 (2011)

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Déjà Vu: Daedelus vs. Johnnie Taylor

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I do not believe that there has been too many album covers designed to look like the inside of a suit jacket. Here are two that employ the concept and were created almost 40 years apart. That is one of the longest time difference in the history of the Déjà Vu category.

Daedelus - Bespoke (2011)

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Johnnie Taylor - Taylored in Silk (1973)

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Déjà Vu: Ledisi vs. The Shadows

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Over the years, there have been dozens of album covers with a jigsaw puzzle motif. So, this déjà vu moment is probably a bit of a stretch. I've actually just paired the cover for the new single by R&B singer Ledisi with one of the earliest examples of jigsaw puzzle pieces on an album cover that I could find.

Ledisi - Pieces of Me (2011)

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The Shadows - Jigsaw (1967)

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In January, Social Distortion released Hard Times and Nursery Rhymes with a unique album cover design concept. The cover was made to look like a Little Golden Book. It features a gold-color spine that resembles those of the popular children's books that many of us grew up reading.

Last week, Orlando band The Pauses released their debut album, A Cautionary Tale. The album cover also featured the gold binding of the Little Golden Book. The packaging for the album includes a little storybook and recreates the look of the books.

Now, we have a third album with a Little Golden Book theme. The forthcoming album Fishin' for Woos by Bowling for Soup is scheduled for release on April 26, 2011.

I think this concept is pretty much played out for 2011. Otherwise, I may be experiencing a quadruple déjà vu moment.

Social Distortion - Hard Times and Nursery Rhymes (2011)

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The Pauses - A Cautionary Tale (2011)

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Bowling for Soup - Fishin' for Woos (2011)

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Teenage Bottlerocket is an American punk rock band formed by twin brothers Ray and Brandon Carlisle. (What is it with twins? I've covered so many of them lately.) Together with The Ergs! the band split a two track tribute album under the Suburban Home Records label entitled Under the Influence Vol 4.

Each band did a cover of a song by a band that influenced them a lot. Teenage Bottlerocket did Having a Blast from Green Day's 1994 album Dookie. My last Déjà Vu post covered The Ergs! tribute and cover art, inspired by Devo.

Teenage Bottlerocket - Having a Blast (2009)

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The cover art for Dookie, Green Day's third studio album, is an illustration by Richie Bucher (Sweet Baby, Jüke, Wynona Ryders). In 1989 due to Sweet Baby, Green Day changed their name from Sweet Children to Green Day so there would be no confusion before releasing their first EP 1,000 Hours. The artwork depicts bombs being dropped on people and buildings. In the center, there is an explosion, with the band's name at the top. Lead vocalist and guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong has since explained the meaning of the artwork:

I wanted the art work to look really different. I wanted it to represent the East Bay and where we come from, because there's a lot of artists in the East Bay scene that are just as important as the music. So we talked to Richie Bucher. He did a 7-inch cover for this band called Raooul that I really liked. He's also been playing in bands in the East Bay for years. There's pieces of us buried on the album cover. There's one guy with his camera up in the air taking a picture with a beard. He took pictures of bands every weekend at Gilman's. The robed character that looks like the Mona Lisa is the woman on the cover of the first Black Sabbath album. Angus Young is in there somewhere too. The graffiti reading "Twisted Dog Sisters" refers to these two girls from Berkeley. I think the guy saying "The fritter, fat boy" was a reference to a local cop. Source

Green Day - Dookie (1994)

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Dookie produced five hit singles for Green Day, became a worldwide commercial success (it is the band's best-selling album with over 16 million copies sold), and reached number two on the U.S Billboard Charts. Rolling Stone ranked Dookie at #193 on the list of The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. It also won the Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album in 1995 and helped propel Green Day and punk music into the mainstream.

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Déjà Vu: The Ergs! vs. Devo

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The Ergs!, an American punk rock band, together with Teenage Bottlerocket, split a two track tribute album under the Suburban Home Records label entitled Under the Influence Vol 4. Each band did a cover of a song by a band that influenced them a lot. The Ergs! did Blockhead by Devo, off the 1979 album Duty Now for the Future. I will be covering Teenage Bottlerocket's tribute in my next Déjà Vu post.

The Ergs! - Blockhead (2009)

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Duty Now for the Future was Devo's second studio album and peaked at #73 on the Billboard Charts. The colorful artwork was designed by Janet Perr. Besides winning a Grammy Award for the art direction and design of Cyndi Lauper's debut album She's So Unusual, she has also worked with The Rolling Stones, among others.

The American 12" album cover was jokingly dominated by the album's Uniform Product Code (UPC), or bar code. The colorful artwork satirized the new requirements for these bar codes. Until that time, album covers were seen as an entire art form unto themselves. Consequently, the new mandates for UPC codes splashed across every work of album art were a subject of much protest as an infringement upon artistic integrity and an Orwellian symbol of the impersonal modern age. The rectangular image of the band originally came perforated and could therefore be removed from the "offending" bar codes surrounding it. Keep watching for my upcoming Variations on a Theme: Bar Codes article. It's almost ready!

Devo - Duty Now for the Future (1979)

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moon.jpgImages of scantily-clad women sitting on a cresent moon have been around almost as long as photography. So, it should not be surprising that the concept has been used for several album covers throughout the years.

Singers have been lowered on swings shaped like a cresent moon in burlesque shows and cabarets since the mid-19th century. Countless pin-up calendars have used the concept. The most notable album cover to feature the recording artist on a cresent moon is Donna Summer's fourth studio album, Four Seasons of Love. Released in October 1976, the LP came with a pull-out calendar for 1977 that featured four photographs of Summer. The summer season photo featured Summer in a bathing suit and reclining on the moon. 

Two recent examples of album covers featuring the cresent moon are Sarah McLachlan's Laws of Illusion, which was released last year, and Lungs: The B-Sides by Florence + The Machine. Both are different takes on the classic burlesque performance.

Which one is better? I think the Sarah McLachlan cover looks more like the classic Victorian photographs. The Florence + The Machine cover seems to be inspired by the 1950s stripper acts.

Sarah McLachlan - Laws of Illusion (2010)

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Florence + The Machine - Lungs: The B-Sides (2011)
 
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r3474172681.jpgThis is our first triple déjà vu moment! It involves a photograph of two skeletons (right) that were unearthed in 2007 by archeologists working near Mantova, Italy, The skeletons are unique and created a media sensation because they appear to have been buried in a lover's embrace.

In a December 2009 Déjà Vu article, I wrote that the image had been used for two album covers. American hard rock band Tesla used it for the cover of their album Forever More. It was also used as the basis for the illustration used for the cover of Fall Out Boy's Greatest Hits: Believers Never Die.

Now, the photograph is being used yet again for the forthcoming album by American heavy metal band Darkest Hour. Titled The Human Romance, the album is scheduled to be released on February 22, 2011.

At this point, I think this particular image has been used enough as album art. In spite of the visual impact of the photograph, it is time to find another image that depicts eternal love.

Darkest Hour - The Human Romance (2011)

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Fall Out Boy - Greatest Hits: Believers Never Die (2009)

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Tesla - Forever More (2008)

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Déjà Vu: One for All vs. Franz Ferdinand

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rodchenko.jpgHere's an interesting déjà vu moment for you. The cover for Franz Ferdinand's 2005 album You Could Have It So Much Better was inspired by Russian artist Alexander Rodchenko's 1924 portrait of Lilya Brik (right).

However, the cover for New York Jazz band One for All's forthcoming album Invades Vancouver! seems to have been inspired by the Franz Ferdinand album. Of course, neither really comes close to the original. The poster is considered to be Rodchenko's most iconic work. It is often used as an example of mixing photography and typography in graphic design classes.

Invades Vancouver! is scheduled to be released on March 8, 2011.

One for All - Invades Vancouver! (2011)

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Franz Ferdinand - You Could Have It So Much Better (2005)

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Déjà Vu: Rolf Julius vs. U2

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The cover for Music for a Distance, the forthcoming album by the late German sound and visual artist Rolf Julius, is very similar to that of U2's 2009 release, No Line on the Horizon. Music for a Distance is scheduled to be reelased on March 8, 2011.

Rolf Julius - Music for a Distance (2011)

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U2 - No Line on the Horizon (2009)

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Déjà Vu: Lupe Fiasco vs. Pet Shop Boys

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Using a neon light sculpture for an album cover is not an original concept. There are literally dozens of recent examples. However, the cover for Lupe Fiasco's forthcoming album has a look that gave me an immediate déjà vu moment.

The cover for Lasers features colors that are very similar to Disco Four, the 2007 remix compilation by Pet Shop Boys. The cover for the Pet Shop Boys album was designed and art directed by the Farrow agency. The photograph is by John Ross, who is known for working with colored lights and neon.

I was not able to find credits for the Lupe Fiasco album cover. It features a neon sculpture of the word "loser" with an anarchy symbol painted over the "O". It looks very much like the earlier work by Ross.

Lupe Fiasco - Lasers (2011)

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Pet Shop Boys - Disco Four (2007)

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Déjà Vu: Bloodhound Gang vs. Ween

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Here is a déjà vu moment that requires very little explanation. Show Us Your Hits is a forthcoming greatest hits compilation by Bloodhound Gang. It is scheduled to be released on February 1, 2011.

 Bloodhound Gang - Show Us Your Hits (2011)

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 Ween - Chocolate and Cheese (1994)

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Déjà Vu: Elephant Man vs. Major Lazer

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Our first déjà vu moment of 2011 involves two albums featuring comic book characters. Guns Don't Kill People Lazers Do! by Major Lazer was released in 2009. Dance & Sweep! Adventures of the Energy God by Elephant Man is scheduled to be released on February 15, 2011.

I don't think a broom is much of a match for a badass laser gun. However, it would be fun to do a mash up of these cartoon characters just to see The Energy God and Major Lazer square off.

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Déjà Vu: Sofia Talvik vs. Beyoncé

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Here's an unusual déjà vu moment. It isn't every day that you see someone walking an alligator on a leash. In 2006, Beyoncé appeared on the cover for her single Ring the Alarm holding two alligators on leashes. At the time, I thought it was one of the more bizarre covers I've seen.

This year, Swedish singer-songwriter Sofia Talvik used a similar image for the cover of her album Florida. Talvik's cover features what appears to be an albino alligator. An unleashed gator can be seen popping out of the water.

Beyoncé - Ring the Alarm (2006)

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Sofia Talvik - Florida (2010)

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Déjà Vu: The Memorials vs. OneRepublic

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This déjà vu moment is brought to you by spattered paint. The self-titled album by The Memorials is scheduled to be released on January 18, 2011.

The Memorials - S/T (2011)

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OneRepublic - Waking Up Deluxe Edition (2009)

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Déjà Vu: Sheek Louch vs. Franco "El Gorila"

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My friend and regular AlbumArtExchange contributor Lindy read my recent article about the cover of the forthcoming album by rapper Sheek Louch and had a major déjà vu moment. In fact, I think this crosses over from déjà vu and into blatant ripoff territory.

The cover for Sheek Louch's Donnie G: Don Gorilla is identical to the cover for the 2009 release Welcome to the Jungle by reggaeton artist Franco "El Gorila". Welcome to the Jungle debuted at #17 on the U.S. Billboard Top Latin Albums and peaked at the #5 position. So, while it may be unfamiliar to those who do not listen to Spanish language albums, it was a major hit.

I won't get into the controversial subject matter related to these album covers. However, I find it amazing that one artist would choose to ape another in such a blatant manner (sorry I couldn't resist the bad pun).

Sheek Louch - Donnie G: Don Gorilla (2010)

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Franco "El Gorila" - Welcome to the Jungle (2009)
 
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Déjà Vu: The Ex vs. Trentemøller

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This déjà vu moment is brought to you by a volcanic eruption. I am not sure if the covers use the same photo, but they certainly are similar.

The Ex - Catch My Shoe (2011)

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Trentemøller - Into the Great Wide Yonder (2010)

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Déjà Vu: Operator Please vs. Jimmy Eat World

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This is perhaps one of the most obvious déjà vu moments ever. The cover for the single Like Magic by Operator Please is almost identical to the cover for the album Bleed American by Jimmy Eats World.

Operator Please - Like Magic (2010)
 
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Jimmy Eat World - Bleed American (2001)
 
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Déjà Vu: Cut Copy vs. Climax Blues Band

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Yesterday, I posted the cover art for the forthcoming album Zonoscope by synthpop group Cut Copy. The cover was a déjà vu moment for AAX user Gregg Alley. He recognized it as being nearly identical to the cover of the 1980 album Flying the Flag by Climax Blues Band.

I did some research and discovered that the earlier album cover was created by the same artist. The late Tsunehisa Kimura is credited as the illustrator for the Climax Blues Band album. I prefer the earlier cover. The sailboat and the rainbow add a certain degree of irony that is missing from the Cut Copy version.

Cut Copy - Zonoscope (2011)

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Climax Blue Band - Flying the Flag (1980)

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Déjà Vu: Naomi Campbell vs. Millie Jackson

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I did not know that supermodel Naomi Campbell had recorded an album until my most recent déjà vu moment. The cover for Campbell's 1995 debut album Baby Woman features her sitting on a toilet and shaving her legs.

The cover is very similar to that of Millie Jackson's Back to the Shit, which was released six years earlier. Until I saw the Naomi Campbell cover, I did not imagine that there could be two album covers featuring a woman sitting on the can.

Naomi Campbell - Baby Woman (1995)

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Millie Jackson - Back to the Shit! (1989)

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Déjà Vu: Jefre Cantu-Ledesma vs. New Order

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Here are a couple of covers that caused an instant déjà vu moment. They were released 24 years apart and I hope that the similarity is as obvious to others as it is to me.

There are actually three similar covers for the New Order single. I had difficulty selecting the one that bears the closest resemblance to the Cantu-Ledesma album.

Jefre Cantu-Ledesma - Love is a Stream (2010)

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New Order - Bizarre Love Triangle (1986)

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Déjà Vu: GLC vs. John Legend & The Roots

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These déjà vu moments are beginning to come in groups of three. This one is one of those times when it seems a little bit more like a deliberate copy than a coincidence. The cover of Wake Up! by John Legend and The Roots and the cover of GLC's Love, Life & Loyalty are virtually identical.

John Legend/The Roots - Wake Up! (2010)

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GLC - Love, Life & Loyalty (2010)

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Déjà Vu: Sing It Loud vs. Kings of Leon

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Undercover News had a déjà vu moment that involves the covers of the forthcoming Kings of Leon album Come Around Sundown and Sing It Loud's Everything Collide, which was released this May.

The album covers both feature palm trees at sunset. However, I think the Sing It Loud cover is a bit more interesting.

Sing It Loud - Everything Collide (2010)

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Kings of Leon - Come Around Sundown (2010)

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Déjà Vu: Sebastian Mullaert vs. Casiokids

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kwest-colleg_03.jpgI have seen quite a few album covers that feature a person dressed up in an animal costume. The College Dropout by Kanye West is probably the most notable.

Today's déjà vu moment involves two album covers that both feature photographs of people in animal costumes without masks. The most recent is for Wawuwe, a forthcoming album by Swedish techno musician Sebastian Mullaert. It is very similar to the series of album covers created for Topp Stemning På Lokal Bar by Norwegian electro-pop group Casiokids.

Both the Mullaert cover and the several created for the Casiokids album (there are at least three) use a series of poses that display different emotions of a person wearing a bunny suit. It is easy to imagine an art director visiting a costume studio for inspiration and deciding to use a bunny costume in a photoshoot. The resulting cover may be interesting, but not as unigue as he or she may believe.

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Déjà Vu: Sarah McLachlan vs. Donna Summer

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Released in October 1976, Donna Summer's fourth studio album Four Seasons of Love used an interesting concept. The LP came with a pull-out calendar for 1977 that featured four photographs of Summer, one for each season of the year. The photos that appeared on the cover was the one that represented the Summer season.

The cover art for Laws of Illusion, the recent release by Sarah McLachlan, features a photograph that is very similar to the one used for Summer's album. It is certainly a classic case of album cover déjà vu.

Donna Summer - Four Seasons of Love (1976)

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Sarah McLachlan - Laws of Illusion (2010)

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This déjà vu moment doesn't require much of an explanation. I just hope that I don't have to look at another skinny, shirtless, white torso without a head for at least a year or two. Otherwise, the AAX gallery will have more sunken chests than a pirate movie.

Antony and The Johnsons - Thank You for Your Love EP (2010)

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Atlas Sound - Logos (2009)

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663px-Titian_Bacchus_and_Ariadne.jpgI have to admit that this déjà vu moment is really just an excuse for me to write about the cover of the 1993 album by Crash Test Dummies, God Shuffled his feet. That cover featured a parody of Bacchus and Ariadne, a 16th century oil painting by the great Italian master Titian (right).

The painting, considered one of Titian's greatest masterpieces. Anyone who has taken an Art History class will be familiar with it. It is part of a series of paintings featuring mythological subjects done by the artist for the Duke of Ferrara for the Camerino d'Alabastro - a private room in his palazzo. The painting now part of the collection of the National Gallery in London.

The album cover for God Shuffled His Feet features a recreation of the painting, with the faces of the band members added to the mytholgical characters.

Classic art has been  used for the covers of classical music albums for quite a long time. So, it is not really surprising to see a detail of Bacchus and Ariadne used for the cover of an album of concerto composed by 18th century German Baroque composer Georg Philipp Telemann.

Georg Philipp Telemann - Spirituola Concerto Melante (2010)

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Crash Test Dummies - God Shuffled His Feet (1993)

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Déjà Vu: Shontelle vs. Miley Cyrus

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I doubt that Shontelle was trying to imitate Miley Cyrus with the cover of her forthcoming album No Gravity. However, I would just like to know what being in a giant bird cage has to do with zero Gs. I get the concept of Miley's cover. The title of the single in Can't Be Tamed. She's in a cage. Shontelle has some explaining to do.

Shontelle - No Gravity (2010)

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Miley Cyrus - Can't Be Tamed Single (2010)

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Déjà Vu: Con Gusto vs. The Waitresses

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This déjà vu moment is brought to you by the old-fashioned red and white checkered tablecloth. Now, I'm hungry for Italian food!

Con Gusto - Con Gusto (2010)

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The Waitresses - Wasn't Tomorrow Wonderful (1982)

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The cover of Bloodsport's forthcoming single About My Dough features the North Philly rapper sitting on a golden throne. When I saw it, I was immediately reminded of the photograph of Michael Jackson that appears on The Remix Suite album that was released last year.

Not only are the thrones very similar, the lighting and the poses are almost identical. It is difficult to believe that the art director was not inspired by the Jackson photograph. All Bloodsport needs is some groovy two-tone bell bottoms and it would be a perfect recreation. All My Dough is scheduled for release on July 13, 2010.

Michael Jackson - The Remix Suite (2009)

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Bloodsport featuring Yak Digger, Jazz, & G-Mann - All My Dough (2010)

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Déjà Vu: Selena Gomez vs. Robyn

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The déjà vu moments have been piling up here at the AlbumArtExchange blog. I've got several waiting in the wings. This one involves two recent singles, Naturally by Selena Gomez & The Scene and Dancing on My Own by Robyn.

Both covers feature what can best be described as awkward dnace poses and jagged graphics. Combine those with the black backgrounds and white glow from behind and we've got a major feeling of déjà vu.

Selena Gomez & The Scene - Naturally (2009)

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Robyn - Dancing on My Own (2010)

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Virgin Snatch is a Polish metal band with a forthcoming album called Art of Lying. It is scheduled to be released in the U.S. on August 10, 2010. When I saw the cover art for the album, I was immediately reminded of a Marilyn Manson remix single from a few years ago. Putting Holes in Happiness was the second single from Manson's 2007 album Eat Me, Drink Me.

Virgin Snatch - Art of Lying (2010)

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Marilyn Manson - Putting Holes in Happiness (2007)

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Déjà Vu: Eminem vs. Five for Fighting

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This déjà vu moment should be subtitled Coming and Going. The "walking down a lonely road" concept has been used countless times for album covers. The fact that these two albums are being released within a couple of weeks of each other makes them worthy of comparison.

Eminem - Recovery (2010)

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Five for Fighting - Slice (2010)

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Déjà Vu: Gossip vs. Guns N' Roses

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This déjà vu moment was caused by the cover art for the single Pop Goes the World by Gossip. It is very similar to the cover for the album Lies by Guns N' Roses. Both are parodies of tabloid newspapers.

Gossip - Pop Goes the World (2010)

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Guns N' Roses - Lies (1990)

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Déjà Vu: The Octagon vs. a-ha

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Here is an interesting déjà vu moment. I don't know anything about The Octagon. The minute I saw the cover for their album Warm Love and Cool Dreams Forever, I thought of a-ha's

The Octagon - Warm Love and Cool Dreams Forever  (2010)

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a-ha - How Can I Sleep with Your Voice in My Head (2003)

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Mondrian.jpgThe cover for Sting's forthcoming album Symphonicities has been revealed and it has given me one of the strangest déjà vu in recent memory. The album is scheduled to be released on July 13, 2010.

I am not sure what inspired the cover, but many will either be reminded of the work of Dutch painter Piet Mondrian (right) or the tour bus on The Partridge Family TV show.

I doubt that Sting really had The Partridge Family in mind, but I like the idea of David Cassidy and Danny Bonaduce accompanying him on tour.

Sting - Symphonicities (2010)

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The Partridge Family - Come On Get Happy (2005)

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Déjà Vu: Juvenile vs. Drake

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Many of the music blogs are posting articles about the striking similarity between the covers for forthcoming albums by artists Drake and Juvenile. The cover for Drake's Thank Me Later was revealed a month ago. The cover for Juvenile's Beast Mode was just posted on the artist's Twitter page. It definitely is a déjà vu moment.

Juvenile - Beast Mode (July 2010)

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Drake - Thank Me Later (June 2010)

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Déjà Vu: Flash vs. Music Go Music

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Here is a déjà vu moment that I had last year and forgot about until today. These two album covers are 37 years apart. Yet, they have a striking similarity. One uses knuckles. The other knees.

Flash - Out of Our Hands (1973)

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Music Go Music - Expressions (2009)
 
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Déjà Vu: Mary Gauthier vs. Moby

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I don't know whehter or not this déjà vu moment is too much of a stretch. However, the first thing I thought of when I saw the cover The Foundling, for the forthcoming album by American folk singer and songwriter Mary Gauthier, was Moby's Wait for Me.

Wait for Me features Moby's "Little Idiot" cartoon character and a crescent moon. The cover of Gauthier's album is very similar. The Foundling is scheduled for release on May 18, 2010.

Moby - Wait for Me Deluxe Edition (2009)

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Mary Gauthier - The Foundling (2010)

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Déjà Vu: Sweet Apple vs. Roxy Music

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This déjà vu moment is the result of an album cover that is an obvious tribute. The interesting thing about this is that the Roxy Music album cover was scandalous when it was released 36 years ago. This new version probably won't raise more than a few eyebrows.

Sweet Apple - Love & Desperation (2010)
 

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Roxy Music - Country Life (1974)
 
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Déjà Vu: The Last Song vs. The Notebook

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I haven't had a déjà vu moment involving a soundtrack album for a long time. I don't think I have ever had one with two soundtracks. These two album covers look as if they were created using the same template.

Various Artists - The Last Song Original Soundtrack (2010)

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Aaron Zigman - The Notebook Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (2009)

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Attention graphic designers! Please stop searching through old photo albums for snapshots of sisters, cousins, and college girlfriends to use as album covers for indie bands. It has been done. All you can hope for is giving people a déjà vu experience and you'll force female relatives to snag all of those embarrassing Polaroids out of the family album.

Dum Dum Girls - I Will Be (2010)

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Vampire Weekend - Contra (2010)

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Déjà Vu: Zombieland vs. Judas Priest

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I had this déjà vu moment last year when I saw the poster for the movie Zombieland and the cover for Judas Priest's live album A Touch of Evil Live. I was waiting to see if the cover of the Zombieland soundtrack would have the apparent typo corrected (they left the "d" out "soundtrack"), but it looks like that's not going to happen.

Judas Priest - A Touch of Evil Live (2009)

Posted by: Scottjudas-priest-touch-of-evil-cover.jpg buy_now_400.gif David Sardy - Zombieland: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (2009)

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Dinosaurs are uncommon enough on album covers to cause a déjà vu moment, especially when the compositon is as similar as Post Historic Monsters by Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine and Chomp by Pylon. I wonder if they had the same T-rex pose for the cover.

Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine - Post Historic Monsters (1993)

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Pylon - Chomp (1983)

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Okay, I readily admit that this déjà vu moment is a stretch. However, the first thing I thought of when I saw the cover for The Disco Biscuits' On Time EP was a weird album cover by an artist called Danielson that I uploaded last year.

The Disco Biscuits - On Time EP

Posted by: zeefritz discob-ontime_02.jpg buy_now_400.gif Danielson - Alive!

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RollingStonesTongueLogo.jpgDatabass Records is a Detroit record label that produces DJ mixes. Afew of their EPs and singles have charted on iTunes. The generic sleeve that they often use for their products has a logo that gave me an instant déjà vu moment. It is a pair of lips on a black background that look very much like the lips from The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

The mouth on the Databass Records sleeve has a "grill" that spells the label's name. Some may point out the similarity to the Rolling Stones' tongue logo (right) that was created by graphic designer John Pasche for the inner sleeve of their 1971 album Sticky Fingers. That has often been the case with the Rocky Horror mouth as well. However, the main element of the Rolling Stones' logo is that tongue.

The Databass Records sleeve is similar to the Rocky Horror artwork in many ways, including color. However, the sleeve has been distributed in several colors other than red.

DJ X-Change - The X-Files 5.0

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The Rocky Horror Picture Show Audience Par-tic-i-pation Album

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Sometimes, déjà vu moments are the result of album covers that are similar through coincidence. Sometimes, they are the result of out-and-out theft. On rare occassions, they are the result of one artist paying tribute to another by imitating an album cover design.

The cover of the EP G-Stoned by trip-hop production duo Kruder & Dorfmeister is an obvious tribute to that of Simon & Garfunkel's 1968 classic Bookends. It is a very good imitation of the original. Thanks to AlbumArtExchange admin Music Hog for suggesting this déjà vu moment.

Simon & Garfunkel - Bookends (1968)

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Kruder & Dorfmeister - G-Stoned (1995)

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Déjà Vu: A vs. Robin Thicke

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I'm not sayin' that singer and songwriter Robin Thicke looks like a monkey. However, I did have a monkey-related déjà vu moment when I saw the cover for his album Sex Therapy. The cover has an unfortunate similarity to that of 'A' vs Monkey Kong by British alernative band A.

A - 'A' vs. Monkey Kong (1999)

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Robin Thick - Sex Therapy (2009)

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rotsnake.gifLast year, Animal Collective released Merriweather Post Pavilion with an album cover featuring an amazing image was created by Akiyoshi Kitaoka, a professor at the Department of Psychology of Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, Japan. Kitaoka is known for creating visual illusions that appear to move. When staring at the cover for Merriweather Post Pavilion, the images appears to move in waves.

Until the release of the Animal Collective album, the most notable image created by Kitaoka was Rotating Snakes (right). It features a series of circular designs that appear to rotate.

Last month, a band called Driver Side Impact used Kitaoka's Rotating Snakes on the cover of their Double Vision EP. While the image certainly doesn't resemble the one on the Animal Collective cover in style, it was a déjà vu moment to see another Kitaoka image used as album art.

Driver Side Impact - Double Vision EP (2010)

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Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion (2009)

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Déjà Vu: Jay Brannan vs. Joss Stone

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The cover for Joss Stone's album Colour Me Free! caused a bit of controversy last year when her record label refused to use the artwork that Stone wanted. I had assumed that the label simply didn't want to use the cover because it is somewhat bizarre.

However, I recently stumbled upon a similar album cover that may be the real reason why Stone's was rejected by her label. The cover for Jay Brannan's album In Living Cover has the same "paint by numbers" themes. Like the Joss Stone cover, it features a line drawing and a partially colored image with numbers indicating what colors should be applied. This is definitely a classic déjà vu moment.

Jay Brannan - In Living Cover (2009)

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Joss Stone - Colour Me Free! (2009)

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It is wonderful that so many recording artists have donated their time and talents to benefit the earthquake victims in Haiti. Two charity albums have recently been released and I was surprised to see that the album art for both is very similar. (Okay, I’m not really surprised. I just want an excuse to provide links that people can use to get the albums and donate to a very worthy cause.)

Various Artists - Download to Donate
 
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Various Artists - Hope for Haiti Now

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There aren’t very many album covers that feature a woman sitting on the toilet. So, seeing the cover for Old No. 2 by Eddie Spaghetti resulted in an instant déjà vu moment. I don’t know whether or not it was inspired by the cover for Millie Jackson’s Back to the S**t!, but there are obvious (and disgusting) similarities.

Eddie Spaghetti - Old No. 2 (2005)

Posted by: zeefritzespagh-old2.jpg Thumbnail image for buy_now_400.gif Millie Jackson - Back to the S**t! (1989)

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Déjà vu: Fall Out Boy vs. Tesla

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r3474172681.jpgIn 2007, archeologists working at a site near Mantova, Italy unearthed a unique pair of skeletons (right). The skeletons appear to have been buried in a lover’s embrace. A photo of the skeleton’s was sent out on newswires, creating somewhat of a sensation.

The archaeologist who led the dig was quoted by the AP as saying, “”As far as we know, it’s unique. Double burials from the Neolithic are unheard of, and these are even hugging.”

Last year, American hard rock band Tesla released an album called Forever More. The cover features an illustration of the famous skeletons. I was unaware of this particular album cover until an AAX blog reader pointed it out a couple of days ago.

Before learning about the Tesla album cover, I thought that the recent greatest hits compilation from Fall Out Boy had been the first to use the skeleton lovers. The Fall Out Boy cover has a different twist. It features the skeletons on the floor of what looks like a young person’s bedroom. However, I am sure that those who were familiar with the Tesla cover got that déjà vu feeling when they saw Fall Out Boy’s Greatest Hits.

Tesla - Forever More (2008)

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Fall Out Boy - Greatest Hits (2009)

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Déjà vu: Grace Jones vs. Cristina

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In 1984, French graphic designer John-Paul Gothe designed a cover for pop singer Cristina’s Sleep It Off. The album was produced by Don Was and was not a commercial success.

The cover for Sleep It Off features a photo collage that elongate’s the singer’s neck. It is done in a very unique style, using horizontal strips of the photograph that appear to have been haphazzardly taped together. The result is an image that would be unique had Gothe not recycled the concept for a much more successful album a year later.

Undoubtedly, many who are familar with Grace Jones’ Slave to the Rhythm have a déjà vu moment when they see the cover art for Sleep It Off. It is common for people to assume that it is a copy of the Grace Jones album.

Cristina - Sleep It Off (1984)
 
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Grace Jones - Slave to the Rhythm (1985)

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Déjà vu: Puddle of Mudd vs. A Skylit Drive

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Close ups of the human eye are a common theme used on album covers. However, when I saw the cover of Adelphia by A Skylit Drive in the AlbumArtExchange gallery a few days ago, the similarity to another recent cover gave me that déjà vu feeling.

The cover art for Puddle of Mudd’s Volume 4: Songs in the Key of Love and Hate has more in common with the A Skylit Drive cover than just the eye. The way the eye is rendered, with black smudged makeup and an eerie reflection in the iris is also similar.

It is always interesting to see two albums that came out at about the same time with covers that look so much alike. I think I prefer the Puddle of Mudd cover. It is a bit more interesting because you really can’t make out what is being reflected in the eye. 

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Déjà vu: Janet Jackson vs. Candy Lounge

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Check out the latest addition to the AlbumArtExchange blog’s déjà vu category. It is very unlikely that the cover for the new x-rated Janet Jackson single Lesbian 2009 was not inspired by the 2006 compilation album Candy Lounge: The Bedroom Tapes.

Both covers feature the lips of women with a pink candy coating. The colors used for the typography are also very similar.

Janet Jackson - Lesbian 2009 (2009)

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Various Artists - Candy Lounge: The Bedroom Tapes (2006)

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Déjà vu: MSTRKRFT vs. Har Mar Superstar

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What are the odds of two artists putting out recordings with almost identical album covers at roughly the same time? In this particular instance, we have MSTRKRFT’s Bounce single and Har Mar Superstar’s album Dark Touches. These covers appeared a little over a month apart. I guess the only question that needs to be asked is, “Who did it better?”

MSTRKRFT - Bounce (2009)

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Har Mar Superstar - Dark Touches (2009)

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Déjà vu: Disco Mafia vs. Kraftwerk

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I am not sure if the cover for Disco Mafia’s Stop Vol. 2 E.P. is a tribute or a blatant rip off of the cover for Kraftwerk’s Autobahn. The cover of the Kraftwerk album is so well known that I have to imagine it is a tribute. Seeing it was certainly a déjà vu moment.

Disco Mafia - Stop Vol. 2 (2005)

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Kraftwerk - Autobahn (1974)

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Déjà vu: Skillet vs. Nip/Tuck

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Ever see a new album cover and think, “Hum, where have I seen that before?” That is the idea behind the Déjà vu category here on the AlbumArtExchange blog. A few months ago, I saw the cover for Awake by Christian rock band Skillet. I didn’t think too much about it until I saw the cover for the Nip/Tuck TV series soundtrack today.

Skillet - Awake (2009)

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Nip/Tuck Original TV Soundtrack - Gabriel & Dresden (2004)

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Déjà vu: Now On vs. Robert Palmer

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In 1975, the cover of Robert Palmer’s second solo album Pressure Drop caused a bit of controversy. It featured the late singer standing in a bedroom while in the background a nude woman in high heels observed the view from an open door. It is often included in lists of best album covers

Last year, hip hop trio Now On paid tribute to Palmer’s noteworthy album cover by creating three variations of it for their album Tomorrow Already. Looking at them was certainly a déjà vu moment.

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Déjà vu: Breaking Benjamin vs. Rollins Band

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This edition of Déjà vu features two album covers with medical images of a human skull. Both images have been manipulated to show obects in the brain. Come In And Burn Sessions by Rollins Band has a razor blade causing the person being x-rayed quite a headache.

The cover of Dear Agony by Breaking Benjamin is an MRI of Benjamin Burnley’s skull that has been doctored to include some kind of Gordian knot design.

Rollins Band - Come In And Burn Sessions (2005)

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Breaking Benjamin - Dear Agony (2009)

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Déjà vu: Throwdown vs. Widespread Panic

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For those of you who are new to the AlbumArtExchange blog, our Déjà vu category is for album covers that seem eerily familiar — as if you’ve seen in somewhere before. Today, I ran across an album by Athens, Georgia rock band Widespread Panic that reminded me of the cover for a forthcoming album from Orange County, California metal band Throwdown.

Throwdown - Deathless (November 2009)

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Widespread Panic - Don’t Tell The Band (2001)

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Déjà vu: George Lopez vs. Neko Case

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I just saw the cover for the forthcoming George Lopez comedy album and it is yet another déjà vu candidate. The cover features the stand up comic and actor crouching on the hood of a red hot rod. Hum, where have I seen that recently?

It is almost exactly like the cover of new Neko Case album, Middle Cyclone. In fact, I’m willing to bet that this is no coincidence. Middle Cyclone was released in March and it is far from being an obscure album.

Neko Case - Middle Cyclone (2009)

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George Lopez - Tall, Dark & Chicano (December 2009)

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Can you imagine heading to the beach with a camera crew and posing in the surf for hours to create what you imagine will be a unique photograph for the cover of your new album? Then, imagine that after your album cover is a done deal that another artist uses the same concept — except that they do it much better.

That’s what I assume happened when two album covers featuring the artists sitting in chairs during a rising tide were both scheduled for release at around the same time. The cover of Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson’s Summer of Fear shows the American singer-songwriter sitting in a chair at the beach as the tide rises. It is a very serene image and not really one that conveys a feeling of fear.

The same cannot be said of the album cover for Keep Calm and Carry On by Welsh rock band Stereophonics (the irony of the two titles does not escape me). This cover shows the band sitting at a kitchen table while a raging tide rises around them. Perhaps this installment of Déjà vu should be called “Who done it better?”

Summer Of Fear - Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson (2009)

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Stereophonics - Keep Calm And Carry On (2009)

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Déjà vu: Jay Reatard vs. DMX

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039_39789~Carrie-Sissy-Spacek-Posters.jpgWith Halloween just around the corner, I think this déjà vu moment is appropriate. It involves two albums that seem to have both been inspired by the Stephen King horror movie Carrie.

Who can forget the scene in which Sissy Spacek has a bucket of blood poured over her during her senior prom — sending her into a telekinetic killing frenzy (right). It is a horror movie classic.

Garage punk musician Jay Reatard appeared on the cover of his 2006 album Blood Visions in what looks like a shot right from Carrie. Wearing nothing but a pair of bikini briefs, Reatard is soaked from head to toe in blood.

When I first saw the album cover for Blood Visions, I immediately thought of Carrie and another album cover that I first saw in 1998. On the cover of Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood, rapper DMX appeared shirtless and also covered in blood. The cover was considered to be quite shocking at the time and many retailers refused to display it on their shelves. 

Jay Reatard - Blood Visions (2006)

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DMX - Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood (1998)

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Déjà vu: The Strawbs vs. Squeeze

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People have probably been taking cute photos of animals with a wide angle lens since the lens was invented and someone tested one out by taking a photo of the family pet. So, it shouldn’t be surprising that a few of these of photos have become album covers. One recent example is Dancing to the Devil’s Beat by The Strawbs. It reminded me of Domino by Squeeze, which was recently uploaded to the AAX gallery.

The Strawbs - Dancing to the Devil’s Beat (2009)

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Squeeze - Domino (1999)

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Déjà vu: Pissed Jeans vs. Spiritualized

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When I saw the cover for Amazing Grace by Spiritualized that was posted by AAX user Schwarzenegger today, I had another one of my album art déjà vu moments. The cover simply features a photograph of an arm. I knew that I had seen something very similar in recent weeks among the new releases. After searching for a few minutes, I found it — King Of Jeans by Pissed Jeans. In fact, the album was the subject of one of my WTF articles.

Pissed Jeans - King Of Jeans (2009)

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Spiritualized - Amazing Grace (2003)

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Déjà vu: Big Boss Man vs. Nick Heyward

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I have one of those freakish memories that allows me to remember things I’ve seen years after the fact. This is especially true with graphic images. So, I have quite a few déjà vu moments when reviewing new album covers. Many ideas are often repeated by designers. Skulls, hearts, butterflies and similar elements are frequently used on album covers.

Today, I came across an album cover that features a photograph of an English breakfast. This is something I saw on another cover 16 years ago. What do you think the odds are of something like this being a coincidence?

Full English Beat Breakfast - Big Boss Man (2009)

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From Monday To Sunday - Nick Heyward (1993)

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This déjà vu moment is somewhat disgusting. Two bands recently produced covers that feature women with tattoos on the inside of their mouths. I certainly hope this isn’t the start of a trend. I believe that the images on both covers are faked. But, I can just imagine some stupid kids actually getting wasted and doing this to themselves.

Cobra Starship - Hot Mess

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Make the Girl Dance - Baby Baby Baby

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Déjà vu: "Weird Al" vs. Tegan & Sara

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This déjà vu moment may be a little bit more of a stretch than most. These two albums are both scheduled to be released on October 27 and it looks to me like they could have used the same wardrobe consultant. Actually, I know that the photo of Weird Al is not recent. The cover for Tegan & Sara’s album is brand new. It is funny to see both covers together, with all of those black and white stripes.

The Essential “Weird Al” Yankovic

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Tegan & Sara - Sainthood

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Déjà vu: Joshua James vs. Annie Lennox

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For those of you who are new readers, the AAX blog’s Déjà Vu category is for those album covers that make you ask, “Hum. Where have I seen that before?” Today, I saw the cover for the new album by folk singer Joshua James on iTunes and it took me a few minutes to recall a similar cover by Annie Lennox.

Joshua James - Build Me This

Posted by: zeefritz
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Annie Lennox - Bare

Posted by: Foundation
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hr_giger_biomechanoid_II.jpgWhat is reported to be the cover for the forthcoming album by German rock band Tokio Hotel was revealed this week. When I saw it, I was instantly reminded of the fantastic artwork of H.R. Giger. Giger is known for his creation of the scary alien frim the movie Alien and the Emerson, Lake & Palmer album cover Brain Salad Surgery.

The cover for Tokio Hotel’s Humanoid actually looks more like the work in Giger’s book Biomechanoid. There can be no doubt that it served as the inspriration for the album cover shown below.

The tricky thing about doing an album cover that is obviously inspired by the work of a talented genius like H.R. Giger is rising to the level of the original. Unfortunately, this cover of Humanoid does not. It is a nice illustration, but it doesn’t come close to capturing the frightening aspects of blending flesh and machine shown in the illustration at right.

Many will also see similarities to the Star Trek character Seven of Nine. Giger’s work was also the inspiration for the Borg characters on Star Trek TNG. I do not believe this album cover even compares to that. Humanoid is scheduled for release on October 13.

Posted by: zeefritz
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Posted by: zeefritz
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The cover for Whitney Houston’s new single Million Dollar Bill is the latest to give me that feeling of déjà vu. The cover features not one, not two, but three images of Whitney. That’s pretty much the same as the cover for Mariah Carey’s upcoming album Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel. I really don’t get the concept. I guess they figure that if one photo of the star is good, three is thrice as nice.

Both Mariah and Whitney look pretty loony in their poses on these covers. It looks as if they’re both having a lot of fun with their Photoshop clones. At least Whitney is wearing a nice dress rather than a stretched out man’s wife beater undershirt.

Posted by: zeefritz
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Posted by: Music Hog
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Déjà vu: Waines vs. Wilco

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How many times have you seen a camel featured on an album cover? During the span of just a few weeks, I have seen two albums that have camels. First, there was the new album by Wilco that has a camel wearing a birthday hat. Then, I had a definite déjà vu moment a couple of days ago when I saw the cover of Stu by an artist called Waines.

I imagine there will be a lot of teenagers who will say, “It is the album with the camel on it” when describing what they want for Christmas this year. Boy, will they be disappointed.

Posted by: Cap’n Knuckle
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Posted by: zeefritz
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While I normally don’t feature mixtape covers on the AAX blog, I recently ran across one that is a cut above the rest. It is also a good subject for my new Déjà Vu category.

Many of the fans of Brooklyn MC Theophilus London weren’t even born when Elvis Costello released his 1978 album This Year’s Model. Costello’s second album, it featured the hit Pump It Up and was produced by Nick Lowe. The album cover was designed by the late graphic designer Barney Bubbles (aka Colin Fulcher).

The cover for London’s This Charming Mixtape was designed by London’s label The Lovers and Knox Robinson as a wonderful homage to either Elvis Costello or Barney Bubbles — perhaps both.

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When I stumbled across London’s cover, I didn’t really have a déjà vu moment. But, I assume that others will — even though This Year’s Model is over 30 years old.

What many people don’t know about the cover for This Year’s Model is that it was originally designed with the “E” in Elvis and the “T” in This cropped off and included a multi-color band on the opposite side (similar to many Peter Saville designs).

Posted by: zeefritz
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For those of you who are too young to remember Elvis Costello’s This Year’s Model, here is the music video for Pump It Up.


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AAX user gege had a déjà vu moment when he saw the cover for the Blue Note classic Somethin’ Else. After a little searching to refresh his memory, he discovered a remarkable similarity to Try! by the John Mayer Trio.

Posted by: zeefritz
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Posted by: Gulickson
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Ever have a feeling of déjà vu when looking at an album cover? If so, let me know and I may feature the album covers on the AAX blog. Just send an e-mail with links to the covers in the AAX gallery to blog@albumartexchange.com.

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Have you ever looked at an album cover and thought, “Hum, I think I’ve seen that before?” Well, so have I. That’s why I’ve created a new category for the AAX blog called Déjà Vu.

Posted by: Music Hog
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Posted by: Scott
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About this Archive

This page is an archive of recent entries in the Déjà Vu category.

Best of Lists is the previous category.

Designer Spotlight is the next category.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.