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When The Clash Smashed Elvis's Guitar

I wanted to share this image because it always surprises me how many people don't know that London Calling was a spoof on Elvis's first album.

Side by side comparison of Elvis's debut album cover with the cover for The Clash's London Calling

Both of these covers, and bands, have held up over time. Like his music, the Elvis cover built a solid foundation with great typography, an iconic photo, and a strong layout. The Clash came along and subverted it by smashing the guitar. Two sides of the same rock and roll coin.

I'll take either one, depending on my mood.

The photo for Elvis Presley's self-titled debut album cover was taken by William V. "Red" Robertson. London Calling was designed by Ray Lowry. It used a photo of Paul Simonon by Pennie Smith.


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