Behind The Artworks: TANAGRA - Meridiem (2019)


We once again had the pleasure of working with the incredible Gary Tonge, who did the panoramic cover art for our first album, None of This is Real. The process of creating the Meridiem cover was a collaborative one, with Tom and Gary extensively discussing different ideas about the composition and underlying symbolism of the image. The scenery and cold color palette are meant to capture the “stoic, yet epic and grand” undertones that permeate the songs. Our first album cover is dominated by energetic movement and action, whereas the cover of Meridiem has a profound sense of stillness and mystery. Stone, mist, and evergreen forests all evoke the emotional weight of the music. 

The album’s overarching theme is “transition”; it speaks to changes in the course of life and the choices one makes along the way. The artwork depicts a grand temple, far in the distance-- a long journey has been made, but there's still a long way to go. The temple represents dreams yet unrealized, with many different paths leading there. The valley feels isolated, nestled between impenetrable forests and mountains: ultimately, everyone’s journey is their own and choices must be made alone. 

Meridiem means "midday" in Latin; it’s the ‘M’ in AM and PM. Conceptually, this represents a crucial turning point in the band's journey, which we feel this album is. Our first album's art depicted a sunrise; this time the sun is high in the sky. Besides the more general themes of transition and change, this imagery and the concepts it represents are very meta-- it all ties into the intimate story of the band itself. 

There are several significant numbers present in the artwork as well: The two colossal stone columns (this is our second album), the five spires of the temple (five members in the band), the seven monuments in the sky (seven songs on the album), and nine paths through the valley (this one is a bit of a musical joke-- part of what gives this album its overall “sound” is the recurring use of ninth chords). Each of these numbers has other significance for the band members as well. 

All in all, we are very pleased with the way the art turned out, and feel that there couldn’t be a more perfect cover for this album!

Listen the album here: https://tanagraband.bandcamp.com/album/meridiem

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