Sleeves: London’s O. Share Their Favourite Record Sleeves

London’s O. Share Their Favourite Record Sleeves.

It was back in Issue Forty-Two, February 2023, that we started getting excited by London duo, O. and discussed their brand of experimental music inspired by sound system culture, heavy rock and electronic music. The quickest route to the O. flavour of experimental was recognising that one half of O., Joe Henwood, had an 18 pedal set up for the baritone saxophone.

On June 21st, O. released their debut album ‘WeirdOs’ via London label Speedy Wunderground. The release of this album prepared the perfect opportunity to speak with Joe and Tash about the artwork and dig into some of their favourite ever album covers. This is Sleeves with London’s O.

Hello O., Thanks for getting involved in our Sleeves feature. Could you tell us about the artwork for your new album ‘WeirdOs’?

Back when the band started in 2021, we came up with the idea of contrasting our dark heavy sound with bright and playful designs. Tash hand drew our original OGO and O. designs which we felt looked like our own cool brand of Haribo or cereal. When we finished recording the album, we came up with the name WeirdOs – a bit of a play on Cheerios, but also a word that describes the collection of tunes, us as people, and the people who enjoy our music. 

For the front cover, Tash made the original design concept inspired by old school cereal brands but with a trippy freaky twist. We then enlisted an awesome crew of photographers/designers from Blackstar Agency to make the finished design. Big shout out to Dan Yates the designer who made the whole thing look amazing. We made the back cover by mixing milk, paint, and PVA with cereal letters for the tracklist. It looks photoshopped, but we promise it’s real!

Thank you for sharing. Now could you tell us about five record sleeves that have influenced O. in life, emotionally, or in creative direction?

Hotline TNT – Cartwheel

Tash: I caught a glimpse of this sleeve when we played our EP launch party at Third Man Records and it really intrigued me. It’s super minimal, but somehow also ties the album title and the grungy, spiky sound of the record together in one abstract graphic. It definitely got me thinking about how we could incorporate our album text into an image, and frame it with blank space.

Radiohead – Amnesiac

Tash: Absolutely just one of the best. It’s nostalgic for that time when everyone would doodle on their school books as a kid, but it also has this overwhelming harrowing feel to it. ‘Packt Like Sardines in a Crushd Tin Box’ from this album is one of my favourite Radiohead tunes, and there’s something particularly soul crushing about the sound of this whole record that I’ve always loved.

JD Beck & DOMi – Not Tight

We’ve both been inspired by these two as individual musicians and together as a duo. Their music is obviously a big lesson in technique and outrageously skilled playing, but we both also love how they don’t take themselves too seriously and make room for humour in the music and surrounding imagery. The cover is a pretty trippy fantasy landscape with them both looking quite nonchalant about the whole thing. We love that.

De La Soul – 3 Feet High and Rising

Joe: This cover had a huge influence on our album artwork with the combination of bright colours, playful design, and shots of the group looking deadpan to contrast. This album’s artwork jumped out and grabbed my attention as a teenager and the music is as fresh and exciting today as it was when I first heard it!

Deftones – Diamond Eyes

Joe: This cover is one of the simplest and coolest I have ever seen. Owls are just amazing and this is an incredible picture of one. Coupled with the classic Deftones font it’s super simple and striking. The album is heavy as fuck too so go listen if you havent already.

Thanks for sharing these album covers with us, O. Speak soon!

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