Punk 45. The Singles Cover Art of Punk 1976-80

The best punk singles record covers – in pictures
Punk 45: The Singles Cover Art of Punk 1976-80 is a collection of punk's seven-inch sleeves, whose distinctively DIY designs encapsulated the attitude at the heart of the musical genre. Co-edited by Jon Savage and Stuart Baker, the book includes interviews with some of the designers whose use of montage, Day-Glo colours and hand lettering created the punk aesthetic. For Savage, it was the single, not the album, that was the perfect format for the succinct speediness of the music ("A lot of punk songs were two minutes or under," he says), and here he describes some of his favourite covers of the era

This book is a revelatory guide to hundreds and hundreds of original 7” record cover sleeve designs – visual artefacts found at the heart of the most radical and anarchistic musical movement of the 20th century. Punk Rock 45 Soundsystem! is introduced (and co-compiled) by Jon Savage, author of the acclaimed definitive history of punk, England’s Dreaming. As well as the encyclopaedic visual imagery featured inside, the book also includes a number of interviews with celebrated designers involved in creating punk’s original iconic imagery. The revolutionary do-it-yourself ethic of punk was applied to the aesthetic of design as much as it was to music, and record sleeves acted as lo-fi signifiers of anarchy, style, fashion, politics and more with an urban and suburban invective courtesy of the 1000s of new bands - punk, post-punk, pre-punk, nearly-punk and more - that emerged at the end of the 1970s. This book is an exhaustive, thorough and exciting celebration of the stunning artwork of punk music – everything from the most celebrated and iconic designs through to the stark beauty of the cheapest do-it-yourself lo-fi obscurities.
Xray Spex , The World turned Dayglo
Punk record covers: Punk Record covers x ray spex
X-Ray Spex: The Day the World Turned Day-Glo
Jon Savage: “A perfect fusion of music and image.”

Blitzkrieg bop , The Ramones
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Ramones: Blitzkreig Bop
Design by John Holmstrom of Punk magazine. “A very good example of their cartoon format.”
Photograph: Soul Jazz Books

Sex Pistols, God Save The Queen, Picture sleeve
Sex Pistols: God Save the Queen
Design by Jamie Reid. “An archetypal image for an archetypal single.”
Photograph: Soul Jazz Books

Crass, Nagasaki Nightmare
Punk record covers: Punk record covers crass
Crass: Nagasaki Nightmare
Art and design by Crass. “Crass record sleeves were a mine of information, illustration and agit-prop design”
Photograph: Soul Jazz Books

Punk record covers scritti politti

Punk record covers: Punk record covers scritti politti
Scritti Politti: Work in Progress 2nd Peel Session
“A fantastically influential sleeve, which includes a detailed breakdown of the cost of production.”
Photograph: Soul Jazz Books

The Panik, It Won't Sell
Punk record covers: Punk record covers the panik
The Panik: It Won't Sell
Design by Steve McGarry. “The image of hustlers is from a 1964 Time magazine. The Panik were the first group to be managed by future Joy Division and New Order manager Rob Gretton.”
Photograph: Soul Jazz Books

The Middle Class, Out of Vogue
Punk record covers: Punk record covers the middle class
The Middle Class, Out of Vogue
“A great illustration of the suburban nightmare.”
Photograph: Soul Jazz Books

Orgasm_Addict_Live Buzzcocks
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Buzzcocks, Orgasm Addict
Montage by Linder Sterling, design by Malcolm Garrett. “I worked with Linder Sterling when we produced a magazine called The Secret Public. From the first moment I saw her work, I was a huge fan, and very pleased to work with her. I also love the colour that Malcolm Garrett put behind the central image, which is so striking. It's a feminist image on a pop record sleeve for a song about sexual excess, which manages to be at once extremely true and also very funny.”
Photograph: Soul Jazz Books

Subway Sect, Nobodys Scared Picture cover

Punk record covers: punk record covers subway sect
Subway Sect: Nobody's Scared
“Their first single, a good example of the underground imagery prevalent in punk.”
Photograph: Soul Jazz Books

Punk record covers: Punk record covers punk 45 book cover Available on Amazon and other outlets