March 21, 2019 / 4:54 PM

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7 Album Cover Photos Without the Entire Band: Fleetwood Mac, R.E.M., and more



Album covers with a photo of the band is pretty much common practice, but some bands have put out albums that feature just one or two members of the band, for whatever reason. Here are seven album covers without the entire band.

 1. New Order - Low-Life (1985)

New Order's Low-Life is the rare album that actually allows you to select its cover. The CD version of the album includes four pictures, one of each member of the band, which can be swapped out as the cover. The album's default cover is the photograph of drummer Stephen Morris.

2. R.E.M. - Lifes Rich Pageant (1986)

Even though the members of R.E.M. have appeared on two album covers (Around the Sun and Collapse Into Now), their faces are obscured on both of them. The closest a member of R.E.M. got to revealing their face on the cover was on 1986's Lifes Rich Pageant, which features half of drummer Bill Berry's face.

 3. Cheap Trick - In Color/Heaven Tonight (1977/1978)

I have a theory about why Cheap Trick's second and third albums, In Color and Heaven Tonight, feature just Robin Zander and bassist Tom Petersson on the front. The band's eponymous debut features a photo of all four members, but when this album flopped, the label executives assumed that emphasizing the band's most attractive members would increase sales. Cheap Trick became huge in Japan with its next two albums, so this plan sort of worked.

4. The Stooges - Fun House (1970)

I could have included Raw Power on this list, but that album was technically released under the name "Iggy & the Stooges," so it's understandable that Iggy Pop is the only person on the cover. However, even though the band's second album Fun House was released as "The Stooges," Iggy is still the only person on the cover, shirtless (of course) and covered in flames.

 5. Public Image Ltd. - First Issue/Second Edition (1978/1980)

When the Sex Pistols imploded, singer Johnny Rotten (now going by John Lydon) started post-punk band Public Image Ltd in 1978. Due to the Sex Pistols' notoriety, putting Lydon's face on the cover of the band's first album was most definitely a marketing ploy, though guitarist Keith Levene would get his own cover for the 1980 reissue of the band's second album.

 6. Portishead - Dummy (1994)

Portishead's origins can be traced back to the short film To Kill a Dead Man, which the band wrote, starred in, and composed the music for. The cover of the band's debut album Dummy is a still from the film, featuring singer Beth Gibbons.

7. Fleetwood Mac - Multiple Albums

Through each of its incarnations, Fleetwood Mac has never appeared in its entirety on an album cover. Drummer Mick Fleetwood appeared by himself on two of the band's earliest albums, while he appeared with bassist John McVie on 1975's Fleetwood Mac, and with singer Stevie Nicks on 1977's Rumours. The closest Fleetwood Mac came to a full band cover was for 1982's Mirage, which featured the band's three songwriters: Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, and Christine McVie.

What other bands have done this with their album covers? Let us know in the comments section!

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