Shelf Life: Teenbeat Originals

Posted inDesign Criticism

The small but long-running indie-pop record label Teenbeat recently launched its Teenbeat Originals line, limited CD-R editions of rare archival material by affiliated artists such as Unrest and Scaley Andrew. Label head (and frequent band member) Mark Robinson has designed a modernist-inspired Digipak for the series: a six-panel foldout customized for each individual disc, with rubber stamps indicating catalog numbers, release dates, and edition numbers. The front cover aestheticizes the iconography of the computer that burns the discs. Another panel reproduces the label’s first ad, from 1985, alongside a series of seemingly random numbers that Robinson reveals are actually “a bit of label history”—Teenbeat’s various street addresses in Arlington, Virginia, and Cambridge, Massachusetts.