C.J. Bolland - The 4th Sign

R&S designers too had their dichromat period! This album from Christian Jay Bolland was a landmark in the techno sound, the perfect transition between the joyfull rave sound of 89-92 and the uptempo Techno and Trance sound that was to reign in the first half of the nineties. But beyond this, the cover was also a turning point by itself.
The design of the House and Techno generation was deeply influenced by the idea that the music had no face. Especially in Europe, the idea was that it was to be represented by digital and abstract images, perhaps by machines, but not by the artist himself. It was a period of "Rock N' Roll is dead" and with it, all the usual imagery of rock bands, with its over-used star-system was considered extinct. It was all about the sound, the machines, the pure joy of the music and the beats. 
But with this cover, R&S was going back to the star system, showing CeeJay full frontal. And even if this portrait was treated in a very bizarre way, it was indeed a portrait : it was saying "Hey, there is someone behind the decks!"
Renaat Vandepapeliere, the label's boss was taking a big step with this release, that was one of the first full-length LP for a rave artist, and this bold move was a way to say that the electronic artists were now grown-up enough to claim for a star status, that people from the dance scene were no longer just deejays having fun, but claimed to be composers and to produce releases that were not just meant to rotate in the clubs.
This cover was clearly reflecting all this, in a very striking way, plus a tribal tone that was a high contrast with the usual techno feel, with all its digital types and fractal imageries!
Booklet (inside)

CD (Back)
In my humble opinion, the back cover was even better with this very serene picture, with a punchy cropping, and the music infos emanating from the mind of Ceejay. This was even more original and striking than the front cover, and built a real aura around the artist, as a spiritual force producing mind-altering music.

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