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BlkMgkNitez
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sat Apr 19, 2008 9:35 pm
Posts: 14
PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 2:26 pm 
 

Recently I drew a logo for my death metal new band. As I'm very "swedish death metal" influenced I began putting together a collage of all my favorite bands to gain inspiration from. I'm not an avid "drawer" but I do like to do it when I have spare time or listening to new CDs. Anyways, after many poor attempts at a logo I decided to go a different route. Cheating maybe but I had what seemed to be a brilliant idea. I started to search for fonts of texts that were already made. I found one that I had liked, downloaded it, and typed out my band name in GIMP using said font. I then printed out the logo and traced it onto paper and added my own elements and ideas to it:

[Logo in GIMP]
http://i.imgur.com/ssfHO.jpg

[My logo]
http://i.imgur.com/o4xTm.jpg

Virtually the same, but with maybe some "Nicke" effects. Feeling very proud of my awesome tracing skills I decided that this was going to be the logo for my first demo. This was maybe a couple of days ago. After I had my completed logo I went to the next step of finding someone with actual talent and skills to draw a cover for me. Riddick, Seagrave, Szpajdel, Danielsson, Necrolord, etc. you name it; I tracked down [Many thanks to MA for helping me with that as well.] Along my quest, I took particular notice of the many band covers I came across. Suffice to say, I noticed many glaring similarities particularly in the logo-area. I'm going to use Marduk, Hour of Thirteen, and Tormented in my example:

Here's the Marduk album "Serpent Sermon:"
http://tinyurl.com/bagxrn6

Hour of 13's self-titled debut:
http://tinyurl.com/alc9oyg

Tormented's full-length "Rotten Death:"
http://tinyurl.com/azy7yh7

I was very surprised that all the logos on these albums were the similar. Closer inspection and a look back at all the logos I had downloaded as possibilities for my own revealed that they are all the same logos.

All three together:
http://i.imgur.com/goXdz.png

Interesting or not, this raises many questions for me. I took the process of making my logo very seriously. Why? Because I felt it was important to have a logo that was my own. I did trace someones work at first but I added my own elements to make it original. That is arguable. What's more though are the bigger questions. Is the so called Metal-world in a new age of computerized generated logo/artwork? How does a bands' decision play into the creation of artwork for an album and how has it changed in the last 15 years? Does it all even matter anymore?

I hope to read some great responses from people who actually draw or create logos/artwork/concepts for bands. Also anyone who thinks of music in this way. Thanks for reading guys.

[Also, I'm not hating on any of these bands. They do what they want with their albums. They are all excellent musicians.]

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Subrick
Metal freak

Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:27 pm
Posts: 5831
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:04 pm 
 

Well my former band's logos were made digitally, all three of them. As for me, I don't really pay too much attention to if a logo is computerized as much as if a cover art is computerized. I personally prefer hand made arts over computerized, but computerized arts that can replicate the look of a hand drawn art I've no real qualm with.
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xThe__Wizard
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:59 pm
Posts: 845
PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:51 pm 
 

It's 2012, people are going to have similar (or the same) kind of logos. It's inevitable. It matters to some yes, but to others its just a logo. I'm one of those people that don't really care. If a band has a sick logo then awesome. If they just have something bland then it's completely whatever to me.
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dalecooper
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2006 9:19 am
Posts: 702
PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 6:41 pm 
 

The word "computerized" is misleading here. These are logos from a shared typeface; that's been a thing as long as there have been both band logos and typefaces (the latter precedes the former, and both of them precede the existence of computers). Burzum's logo (which Varg claims is not really a logo, but whatever) was famously made from a stock typeface called Gothic. Computers make this easier, and it's kind of odd and startling to see multiple band logos made from one highly distinctive and recognizable typeface, but it's not really unusual that people use these stock fonts instead of drawing up their own, or having an artist do it. A lot of them just think of the logo as the band name written in a slightly interesting-looking or evocative style, not exactly a personal statement. And given that many other "original" logos are completely interchangeable, like 98% of brutal death metal logos, I don't think it matters a whole lot.

Cool, unique logos are great and add a small something to the overall presentation, but they're not necessary components of good metal.

By the way, I can't help but notice that in your side-by-side example, only the Hour of 13 logo is actually written in that exact typeface. The other two are close-but-no-cigar; they could even potentially be hand-drawn (though I doubt it). There are plenty of Ye Olde Englishe typefaces floating around with similar (but not exactly the same) character design.
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693
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2009 3:55 am
Posts: 626
PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 7:08 pm 
 

All the Gothic Calligraphy has been done to death in metal. So I can't really see how this surprises you in anyway. If you want a original logo, never ever use any of the Gothic Calligraphy Typefaces, as they have all been used in metal, even prior to "computerized"-art.

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MARSDUDE
Metalhead

Joined: Fri Apr 29, 2005 8:17 pm
Posts: 1706
Location: Canardia
PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 7:30 pm 
 

I love the old-school thrash logos the most. The colours were always awesome, and the shapes were very cool.

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jerk
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2012 6:43 am
Posts: 149
Location: Malaysia
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 1:19 am 
 

MARSDUDE wrote:
I love the old-school thrash logos the most. The colours were always awesome, and the shapes were very cool.


True dat. I just kind of think the computer-generated logos look kind of dull and sterilized, but hey, not so bad. I'd rather have one than a trademark Unreadable Deathcore Logo™, for instance.

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Zodijackyl
Lazy Wizard

Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 5:39 pm
Posts: 4977
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:09 am 
 

Countless bands had logos that simply used Gothic or Old English fonts with little or no modification, and it's not uncommon to see bands opting for something that's a bit more modernized like that "gnarly gothic" font that you mentioned. A lot of older logos were also very similar, based off of some sort of bold/blocky font with a bit of addition/shaping on the ends, or a letter or two or three extended to connect it. Design mediums have changed, so rather than drawing something based off of another band's cool-looking logo (which is hugely popular, always has and always will be), the tools are more like stencils these days.

Perhaps less emphasis is put on the logo these days - I'm sure most of us remember thinking how cool a band must be if their logo was badass, but much more information is available these days. Logos are a great indicator of a band's style - more often than not you can identify heavy/thrash/black/grind bands based on their logos - complex, illegible scribbling passed off as a logo is still an identifier of brutal gurglegrind bands in this age.

Album artwork can be argued either way. Crappy, uninspired digital artwork is really easy to acquire but it has a certain modern aesthetic that a lot of people seem to favor recently. In the 80s, a lot of artwork would be a band photo, a logo or name, or often something stock - many of our favorites have iconic artwork, but a lot of bands couldn't afford anything special or didn't have tons of say with their labels. It's rare to see a band on an album cover in recent years, I suppose it's somewhat of an identifier of the era. You can trace the tendencies of effortless artwork 20 years back simply by looking at Fear Factory album covers. Some bands don't like to focus on it, they want to make their statement with the music and prefer to not do so with someone else's art, or they simply want to brand their logo onto it in a slightly different form like establishing a brand name.

On the other side of things, some bands present an outstanding aesthetic with artwork - Baroness come to mind, and I think it has helped them to gain attention by having the signature style of artwork as well as having their frontman doing similarly-styled artwork for some other prominent bands. Association with an artist/style was also notably prominent with Niklas Sundin's artwork, where it looked cool and it was sort of a status symbol of being a melodic metal band that shared an appeal with the Swedish scene that was hugely popular for a while.

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Turner
Metalhead

Joined: Fri Aug 23, 2002 2:04 am
Posts: 1244
Location: Germany
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 5:15 am 
 

I dunno, seems to me bad artwork in some way has been the rule rather than the exception for most of metal's existence.

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IanThrash
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Dec 26, 2011 10:56 pm
Posts: 915
Location: Argentina
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:20 am 
 

I like to draw and, althought im not great, i can do interesting stuff. My band´s logo (Non Serviam its the name) its not ready but we are going after something original and different, not just a font. Its a personal choice i guess.
Indeed...many bands are using digitally-made artworks and logos but there are a couple of awesome motherfucker out there...Have you seen Cormorant-Metazoa´s artwork? or John Baizley´s works?
I love refined logos like old At The Gates or the awesome Opeth but hey! Entombed also used a similar font and it looked badass xD.
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BlkMgkNitez
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sat Apr 19, 2008 9:35 pm
Posts: 14
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:06 pm 
 

Zodijackyl wrote:
Countless bands had logos that simply used Gothic or Old English fonts with little or no modification, and it's not uncommon to see bands opting for something that's a bit more modernized like that "gnarly gothic" font that you mentioned. A lot of older logos were also very similar, based off of some sort of bold/blocky font with a bit of addition/shaping on the ends, or a letter or two or three extended to connect it. Design mediums have changed, so rather than drawing something based off of another band's cool-looking logo (which is hugely popular, always has and always will be), the tools are more like stencils these days.


I would love to see some examples of these "block/bold" fonts you are talking about because I have never taken notice to that. When I think of 80s-[early]90s era of Metal music [Death or Thrash] I see original drawn out logos over digital/computer generated work. Most work could've been imported to a program and from there went to the real editing but most works to me look free-hand with some minor edits.

Zodijackyl wrote:
Perhaps less emphasis is put on the logo these days - I'm sure most of us remember thinking how cool a band must be if their logo was badass, but much more information is available these days. Logos are a great indicator of a band's style - more often than not you can identify heavy/thrash/black/grind bands based on their logos - complex, illegible scribbling passed off as a logo is still an identifier of brutal gurglegrind bands in this age.


This just makes me think what am I paying for when I pick up an album or before that decision? I don't know how much Hour of 13's album was when it came out but I guarantee I could recreate that same cover/layout given the right sources for the images and filters. Why should I pay $10-$15 for a package [not the music] that I could easily recreate? Most of the time if a band goes unheard in a record store or online it's the cover or name that sells the CD when no music is present. I don't want to get into royalties, "music should be free", etc. kind of thing but it's interesting to me either way. I think understanding how the process of albums are made is important because it helps you decide where your money should go. A band like Bastard Priest for example, creates everything from the music to the physical CD/artwork. When a band like that puts out an album I know I'm getting my money's worth regardless because of the effort that went into the entire process. If I could actually draw though I'm sure this would be a much different conversation.

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xThe__Wizard
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:59 pm
Posts: 845
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:51 pm 
 

BlkMgkNitez wrote:
Zodijackyl wrote:
Perhaps less emphasis is put on the logo these days - I'm sure most of us remember thinking how cool a band must be if their logo was badass, but much more information is available these days. Logos are a great indicator of a band's style - more often than not you can identify heavy/thrash/black/grind bands based on their logos - complex, illegible scribbling passed off as a logo is still an identifier of brutal gurglegrind bands in this age.


This just makes me think what am I paying for when I pick up an album or before that decision? I don't know how much Hour of 13's album was when it came out but I guarantee I could recreate that same cover/layout given the right sources for the images and filters. Why should I pay $10-$15 for a package [not the music] that I could easily recreate? Most of the time if a band goes unheard in a record store or online it's the cover or name that sells the CD when no music is present. I don't want to get into royalties, "music should be free", etc. kind of thing but it's interesting to me either way. I think understanding how the process of albums are made is important because it helps you decide where your money should go. A band like Bastard Priest for example, creates everything from the music to the physical CD/artwork. When a band like that puts out an album I know I'm getting my money's worth regardless because of the effort that went into the entire process. If I could actually draw though I'm sure this would be a much different conversation.


Maybe because when you buy an album you are also buying the music and paying for the medium its coming on. Maybe Hour of 13 really like that album cover and font. You also forget that bands don't really make things so their customers will be happy. I can recreate tons of songs on guitar yet you don't see me saying I shouldn't pay for it cause I can play it. Your argument is invalid.
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BlkMgkNitez
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sat Apr 19, 2008 9:35 pm
Posts: 14
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 3:22 am 
 

xThe__Wizard wrote:
Maybe because when you buy an album you are also buying the music and paying for the medium its coming on. Maybe Hour of 13 really like that album cover and font. You also forget that bands don't really make things so their customers will be happy. I can recreate tons of songs on guitar yet you don't see me saying I shouldn't pay for it cause I can play it. Your argument is invalid.


Drawing and playing music are two different things. Very different things. If you're saying music has the same value as artwork then we are on two different levels. Spend sometime to read what I wrote before you decide to pass judgement so quickly. Nit-picking is a habit you should definitely drop. As I said before I'm not hating on these bands. If the package looks bad that doesn't always deter me from buying it. Take Swedish Death Metal for example. I love the music no matter what and if the album I decide to buy doesn't have artwork that is up to my expectations then it doesn't matter to me because I love the music.

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jtgilmore13
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2009 3:39 am
Posts: 116
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 5:17 pm 
 

I'm almost certain that those bands are using the Barlos Random font, not hand drawn logos.

http://www.dafont.com/barlos-random.font

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Zodijackyl
Lazy Wizard

Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 5:39 pm
Posts: 4977
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 5:31 pm 
 

BlkMgkNitez wrote:
I would love to see some examples of these "block/bold" fonts you are talking about because I have never taken notice to that. When I think of 80s-[early]90s era of Metal music [Death or Thrash] I see original drawn out logos over digital/computer generated work. Most work could've been imported to a program and from there went to the real editing but most works to me look free-hand with some minor edits.


Metallica's logo and those based on it - it's basically a basic blocky/bold font with the letters on the end shaped a certain way. Testament's logo is similar, with the Ts connecting and some edges pointed inward, or any one of the logos where the top of a T is extended along the whole length of the top and connected to the letters at the end, but the letters are mostly basic and certain things like this give it the feel of a logo.

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Unded Infidel
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Sep 18, 2012 11:17 am
Posts: 62
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 6:49 pm 
 

similarities are inevitable. With all the bands that exist its kinda hard to be original. Personally i dont care to much for logos, if it catches my eye it'll stick out more but i won't base the music off the logo (which is retarded cuz i dont think anyone does that anyway). I like your hand drawn version of your logo though.

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