Best Record Label Packaging

Pegasus Farms Records

The advent of the CD killed album art — and yet nobody bothered to tell the mysterious life force behind Pegasus Farms Records. In the true spirit of the avant-garde, these CD-Rs are limited-run, handmade objects that are beautiful simply because — well, simply because they can be beautiful. Blood Piece 2/For A.O., an album of lucid dreams mined from the depths of night by Raglani, comes in a thin-line, transparent plastic DVD case, an elegant tiger picked out in black on the front. Another tiger on the CD-R itself peers out from behind its mate, the plastic clouding its visage. Is it cheating to work in a larger-than-standard CD-size package? Maybe — but maybe the major labels should consider aesthetics as part of the package. Even when PFR "plays by the rules," the label does a better job implying the beauty that's contained in its artists' music by creating an appealing, unique format to package it in. Heavy card-stock covers, hand-screened lettering, a clean sense of design — all of it works together to tell you that this music matters, that it's worth caring about. The fact that the music lives up to the imagery isn't a surprise; PFR seduces your eyes before the recording artist makes love to your ears.

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