1. Ayers Rock — Big Red Rock

2. Goanna — Spirit of Place

3. Yothu Yindi — Tribal Voice

4. Andrew Richardson — Expanse

5. Cold Chisel — Circus Animals

6. Midnight Oil — Diesel and Dust

7. Australian Crawl – The Boys Light Up

8. John Sangster — Lord of the Rings, Vol. 3

 Although most Australians live in urban areas—indeed, they cluster in the cities of the east and south-east coast—our sense of identity is inextricably linked to the vast interior of the country. It’s odd. Most Aussies have never been anywhere near the red heart of the continent. Yet its ancient deserts and salt-bed lakes offer iconic images that artists of all persuasions are drawn to. Perhaps it’s the light.

Hope you enjoy this set of covers. All the albums bar one come from the so-called ‘first vinyl era’.

The second part is called ‘Smoke and Mirrors‘.

[The feature image is the inner sleeve of Ayers Rock Big Red Rock. The cover has a die-cut hole the shape of Uluru (the First Nation name) with the inner sleeve image providing the colour and texture. I love die-cut covers.]

Big Red Rock — 1974

Spirit of Place — 1982

Tribal Voice — 1991

Expanse — 1984

Circus Animals — 1982

Diesel and Dust — 1987

The Boys Light Up — 1980

Lord of the Rings Volume 3 — 1977



  1. Lovely all!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Mike. Only one I had to venture into net-world to get!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ayer’s Rock is by far my favourite image. Never imagined it on an album cover like that before. Deep Purple used it, not nearly as effectively.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. “Deep Purple In (Ayers) Rock” presumably!

          (It’s indigenous name is Uluru, but I couldn’t resist a little purple joke)

          Liked by 1 person

          1. I knew that because I enjoy reading geology in my spare time!

            GREAT joke honestly 🙂

            But the album was just called Australia ’99. Wasted opportunity!

            Liked by 1 person

  2. Cold Chisel played here in Thunder Bay back in the summer of 81 opening for Ted Nugent…
    Nice selection of covers..cool idea

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Goodness me. Chisel got around, didn’t they? Were you there deKe?
      And while we’re asking questions, is Thunder Bay at the end of Thunder Road?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yup I was at that show…
        Not to sure if Thunder Bay is at the end of Thunder Road but it is kinda in the middle of no mans land in Canada …
        If that helps any…haha

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow, love ’em! That Oils album brings me right back.


    1. Great! That Oils album did best overseas, I think. And d’you know, Sarca, I bought the copy in the photo in a shop in Portland OR, in either ’93 or ’96!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. You’ve a beautiful, interesting country there, VC. Are nos. 7 & 8 pretty representative of what I would see and experience upon finally taking my first visit to your part of the globe?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yep, pretty much. There’s temperate rain forrest less than an hour from my house and stunning beaches pretty much everywhere around the edge. However honesty compels me to reveal you’d rarely see so few blokes perving at a beach beauty.


  5. Loved this, the Cold Chisel one in particular; that’s a great photo.

    I share your love of die cut sleeves too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 😊 If they weren’t so damnably difficult to photograph in a way that makes sense, I’d do a feature!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I hear your pain – personally I have a grudge against covers with silver foil on them.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yeah, I think I knew that!

          Liked by 1 person

  6. Love the reds in the covers. What’s the ‘first vinyl era’? (Dare I ask?)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. He he. Refers to the advent of the LP through to CDs taking over by the mid-to-late 80s.
      cf: ‘The vinyl revival’ that is currently in progress. Hope that helps, cos you really need to know these things for a full and satisfying life.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Nice idea. The color schemes are striking. Numbers 1 through 4 very heavy on the red/orange spectrum; numbers 6 and 7 a bit less, though still prominent; number 8 goes for orange lettering; only number 5 keeps us solidly on the cool blue side of things (despite contributions from the Cruel Animals title and the awning on the camper….)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for giving these hanging space on your retina, JDB. It is quite striking how often sun and its palette of reds and yellows features on music albums, especially from the 70s and 80s.

      Next spread features people.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I love these posts, Bruce… and you just know that I dig all of these – striking and scorched. Favourites are Goanna, Cold Chisel and Midnight Oil.

    I’m already looking forward to the second part.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s great J. I imagine those intense reds and burnt yellows strongly evoke the Scottish hills and dales.
      Next album cover post: people.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Haha… something like that.

        Though there’s not enough grey on any of these.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Awesome. I wonder which of those boys was first to be brave enough to come in out of the lake and admit the water was cold, is all…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Perhaps asking to borrow her towel…

      Liked by 1 person

  10. […] More Australian album covers from 1973—1984, this time focusing on people and contrast. (Part 1 is here) […]


  11. I want that trailer on the Cold Chisel cover. I usually don’t jump into the rating game but it’s #1 for me. (I guess I’m playing that game by myself)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Always welcome to play here, CB. The dried salt pan lake on the Cold Chisel cover is terrific, isn’t it?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m packing the towel, lotion and the beverages right now. You can bring the radio.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Ian Hudson · · Reply

    Oils Diesel and Dust is a ripper but in my opinion The Oils Red Sails in the Sunset is one of the best ever.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No argument, Ian. They are both outstanding album covers.


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