IRON GIANT, Creator of Scars (2008, Diminished Fifth)
Looking like something from the discount wall at the local tattoo parlor, this low-detail skull is wreathed in some kind of smoke. Some specific kind of smoke, I’m thinking. Since the album is called Creator of Scars, I guess we can assume that it’s some sort of chemical weapon or otherwise militarized vapor. Yeah, that’s probably it. The oddest detail of this skull is the lack of shading in the eyesockets. I guess under high light (heh heh, I said “high”) there wouldn’t be a great contrast, but dark sockets are such a deep-rooted convention that its flouting really throws me off here. From the looks of it, though, that decision might have been practical, because as it is, this cover can be printed with only three spot colors. Frugal.
Iron Giant are the sort of band to affect calling themselves “rock and roll” when they’re pretty obviously a metal band, specifically a stoner metal band. Offering exactly the same mix of Sabbath riffs and super sounds of the seventies that literally 100% of all other stoner metal bands offer, Iron Giant are clearly not out to change the world. I guess they do the style well enough, though, and singer Chris Lewis is better than a lot of his peers, but so what? This is by definition low-ambition music, and unless you already own dozens (or more) albums exactly like this, you probably don’t own a single one, and never will.
— Friar Johnsen