The aesthetic pleasure of beautiful album covers is one of the great attractions in record buying. Those old LP covers could be eye-stoppers; painted, illustrated, and designed by great artists and photographers, they swept you off your feet and demanded that you buy the album. Slightly over a foot (31cm) square an LP album took on the importance of a coffee table picture book. Often reproducing famous paintings or great photographs some were worthy of being framed and hung on the wall. With the coming of CDs and their much-reduced size this quality has been lost.
Pictures were on the front and back covers of the record jacket and sometimes on the record sleeve inside the cover. The record formats range from 78rpm boxed sets to 33rpm LP albums to 45rpm EPs (extended play) and on to CDs. A gatefold LP can have a booklet stapled inside and most CDs have a booklet inside the cover of the jewel case. A vinyl record or a CD can have a picture embossed or printed right on the disc itself.
There are several known picture discs: one Australian LP vinyl and an Italian LP vinyl plus at least nine CD picture discs. (Anon 2014) A separate section was created for all those cover illustrations and photos of caves that could not be identified or located. And finally, picture covers showing artificial caves or mine passages intended as caves were grouped apart. Artificial caves are defined here as man-made structures built to resemble a real cave.
An exception was made here regarding the exclusion of all religious music in this discography. Record covers showing the caves at Lourdes and Covadonga were included and albums of gospel music with cover photos taken in caves in the United States were also shown.
Only original pressings will be listed here. All reissues and foreign releases of a given disc will be omited. However, whenever possible, a link to the Discogs site will provide the information on these other releases.
Many of the records, LPs, 45s, or CDs, listed here do not contain any cave or bat-inspired music. This is a purely visual section pour le plaisir des yeux [to grace the eyes].
Each country has been listed alphabetically. And each entry for that country was given a code number – starting with "PC-RE" meaning picture covers - real caves followed by the country code established by the ISO (International Organization for Standardization), based on lists published by the United Nations.
The list of abbreviations used for each entry will be found in the “Abbreviations” tab on the bottom left.