Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Caroliner (in this case Caroliner Rainbow Scrambled Egg Taken for a Wife) – Banknotes, Dreams, & Signatures (1994)

Another band that I thought of immediately when beginning to consider my contributions to this blog. Longtime Bay Area mystery group Caroliner has released a bunch of records since the early-mid-‘80s, every single individual one of them hand-assembled and -decorated, making each copy truly unique.

So actually, although their center labels are interesting and worthy, the outer artwork is really where it’s at. There’s usually some basic underlying printed motifs or artwork, or object inclusion, but each copy always has its own additional modification. Their live shows are intensely and inimitably visual too.

Out of the records I have of theirs (which are also difficult to store due to their unconventional shapes, sizes, and the frequent fragility of their packaging), Banknotes, Dreams, & Signatures had a particularly nice set of center labels. I had one other possibility, for which the center label had been slathered with paint during the decoration of the cover artwork, but didn’t like the design as much (even though it probably illustrates the band’s design sense better). Plus I thought the B-side here complemented the Ten Foot Faces A-side from yesterday.

By the way, the band is generally known as Caroliner, but each release also boasts a renewed take on their name, usually in the form of a long, automatic writing-esque sentence fragment (hence Caroliner Rainbow Scrambled Egg Taken for a Wife, in this example).

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