In 1938, Alex Steinweiss, an art director for Columbia Records invented the concept of album cover art, making way for epic images that continuously influence pop culture. It’s different now that most listeners stream and download music, which has ignited a market for unique album artwork to differentiate one project from the next. Also, design software is much more accessible and apps like instagram are extremely popular. That accessibility has given artists a bevy of new media to expand greatly the idea of album covers. Artists can create several album covers with a mouse click, and with a simple QR code make them interactive, or create a vine video that gives the viewer a short film in lieu of a traditional static album cover.

So it’s no shock that this year is has delivered dope album covers.

Here is my list of 2013’s Five Best Hip Hop Album Covers, based on: visual aesthetic, concept in relation to album name and theme, and creative execution.

it’s that time of year. when the rap world comes to a screeching halt so that 34 people can freestyle during an awards show that doesn’t give out awards.
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The year’s not even over and Drake is at #11 on this list, with $10.5M banked already. King Kendrick ain’t far off his heels with $9M in total. 50 Cent has also tumbled way down this list as compared to a few years ago. It looks like the young guns are taking their official place and not just some “Saved-By-The-Bell-The-New-Class” knockoffs either. Read the full list after the jump. Hat tip to TSS.
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2013 Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG

 |  April 25, 2012
11,783,079
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The newly redesigned twin-turbocharged V-8 Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG is mean. It features 544 horsepower and 560 pound-feet of torque, the power is sent through the AMG Speedshift Plus 7G Tronic automatic transmission and a permanent all-wheel drive system with front, center and rear locking differentials. Aesthetic changes come in the form of a newly designed grill with chrome accents over black mesh that helps cool the inner workings of the V-8. Expect the G63 AMG to cost upwards of $125,000 USD.