US rock band chooses ‘awesome artwork’ by Maltese designer for new album

Counting Crows choose artwork by Ivan Sciberras for their next album cover.

Local designer Ivan Sciberras beat 1,400 international competitors for the opportunity to design the Counting Crows's new album cover.
Local designer Ivan Sciberras beat 1,400 international competitors for the opportunity to design the Counting Crows's new album cover.

The multi-platinum American rock band Counting Crows has chosen the work of Maltese designer Ivan Sciberras for the cover of their new album Underwater Sunshine (or What We Did On Our Summer Vacation) scheduled for release on 10 April.

The band commissioned fans to create the album artwork through the website Creative Allies, which hosts similar competitions throughout the year. Sciberras beat stiff competition with 1,400 submissions made by designers from all over the world.

Counting Crows praised Sciberras's "great work" and "awesome artwork", compliments that were backed by the band's fans on Facebook. Adam Duritz, the lead vocalist, wrote to Sciberras congratulating him for his work and saying he "loved the cover".

Sciberras, 39, said he was proud of this achievement: "I really wanted to create something different and unconventional for this album cover. I am, of course, very pleased that my design was selected. It is incredibly satisfying to see my work travel the world and be associated with such a prestigious name".

Sciberras explained that it was a challenge to come up with a design that did justice to the album's title.

"It's a bit of an awkward title for a designer to work from, to be honest! So rather than going on the idea of 'underwater sunshine' per se, I thought of depicting someone who takes sunshine with them wherever he goes," Sciberras said, mentioning The Smashing Pumpkins album covers as an influence on his winning design.

The album cover he designed for Counting Crows already features prominently on the band's web site announcing the dates for the tour starting in April.

Formed in 1991, Counting Crows gained popularity following the release of its debut album in 1993, August and Everything After, which featured the hit single Mr Jones. They have sold more than 20 million albums worldwide and received a 2004 Academy Award nomination for their song Accidentally in Love, which was included in the film Shrek 2.

 

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