Primo Die-Cut Effort: 36 Album Covers in One

July 18, 2007

Led Zeppelin Physical Graffiti

Bill (his extensive blog is Rock-of-Ages) encouraged me to haul out more elaborate Zep efforts. So…


What’s the name of the infamous 1975 Led Zeppelin double album, with all the little windows on both sides of the cover? It’s actually 36 different album covers for the price of one…that’s the number of front and back cover combinations you can make by inserting the two inner sleeves and a light cardboard insert (each with people in the windows, printed on both sides). Lots of famous folks, and the Zeppelin boys…profiles, in drag, etc.

Kind of like an interactive Sgt. Peppers cover. Those were the days when they spared no expense for a top-selling rock act.

The buildings pictured are located at 96 and 98 St. Mark’s Place in New York City.

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9 Responses to “Primo Die-Cut Effort: 36 Album Covers in One”

  1. Chips Whiskey said

    Are amazing album covers like this the effect of the LP being a physically larger medium than the CD (i.e. more cover space to play with)? Or a result of greater limitations? For instance, artists didn’t have the option of tacking on a DVD with the album, so they had to find creative ways to give the consumer more.

  2. Dave said

    It’s the larger medium, in most cases. But my son has a few CDs with die cut inserts and second layers. It’s a cost issue now, I think, Chipsster.


  3. bob_vinyl said

    It’s a shame that CDs are so skimpy these days. They’ll never be as cool as LPs just because of size, but you see so few packages in mainstream rock as cool as this.

  4. Liz said

    This album by Led Zeppelin is called “Physical Graffiti,” and I bought it way back when for precisely the reason why it’s displayed here. Very cool concept with the die-cuts and interchangeable sleeves. Ironically, the music contained within is only so-so – there are some good rockers, but overall, it’s not as good as other Led Zep recordings.

    CD sleeves have none of the character or design sense that the LPs did; maybe some few might take a chance, but by and large the majority are deadly dull.

  5. Maximus said

    I would like to see a continuation of the topic

  6. Ramic said

    The main reason for the disappearance of the die-cut LP cover was the massive increase in production costs that occured in the early 1980’s. Prior to that many bands could (and did) demand them from their record companies. However despite extensive searching, I have never been able to find a comprehensive list of such covers on the web.

  7. Alexwebmaster said

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  8. ramic said

    At last – this is a list of so-called “gimmick” LP covers – which includes a great number of the classic die-cut covers.
    So, enjoy an art form never to be seen again…..

  9. Great to get a connection from you and your collection of covers – some good ones. I’ll enjoy going through them.

    Wow, this is my dormant little blog. It’s alive!!
    Also see my audioblog: – on innovations in the recording studios in the 60s.

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