Rock Posters – a Perfect Storm of Succinct Band Brand Messaging

Of Music, Art and Brands
Rock paper show has just lunched a new book to celebrate the history and diversity of the rock poster. The rock poster has really come it to its own in the last couple of years where some seriously talented artists are looking to the screen printer to create art for rock and roll gigs. It makes an interesting collaboration between music, art and brand. Bands are usually defined by their genre as much as they are defined by there sound. Needless to say that the same thing is true for their poster art. It takes a true artist to interpret the bleeping, yelling and banging noise of a band and turn it into a beautiful work of visual art.

The humble poster is a designer’s pleasure, it has been around since the birth of graphic design. And even as technology advances and new media platforms develop, it retains its evocative role of communicator to the masses. The street poster can connect a city to its culture and the city’s culture to the people. Whether political, social, or musical, the vast array of posters that textualise the walls and underpasses the world over demonstrates the rich diversity of the city’s happenings.

The role of the poster as authentic channel for band brand communication is still just as relevant today as ever. Its power comes from the succinctness of a singular message. A poster has to be immediate, memorable and direct. These qualities are what makes the poster a perfect vehicle for delivering a brand message. Marketers and internal brand administrators will often want to put as many messages in each communication channel as they can, but this is not always the best way to deliver a clear message. We can learn from the poster artists – a single, strong message is way better than several competing ones. The modern masters of the poster have found happy homes in the marriage between art/posters and music. It is a perfect mix, 1 poster per show, date, time and venue. The rest of the space is for band brand personality. As with brand design, it’s through personality that we begin to see the subtleties of styles and genre. The poster artist’s personality begins to show through in not only the medium of image making techniques but also in the bands and musical styles he chooses. There is alot of real estate left over for personality, and the posters that tickle me most of all are the one that built a story by combining text and image in the one frame.

There is also an interesting observation that I have made from the perspective of a designer of brands; even when several different artists design posters for the one band, consistency seems to rise to the top. I wonder if the style of music influences the style of the poster in its content and message. Here at Truly Deeply we engage in a deep de-code before we design brands, looking, investigating similar markets and design trends, turning things on their head and getting under the skin of each brand. The universal quality of music is a great source of inspiration and wonder, the same can be said about creating brands that truly connect. I have put together a little collection of posters of the awesome band Monotonix, done by different artist. We can begin to see a code emerge, a rockin’ awesome live show code. Have a look and see if you think if the poster artists got the vibe right.

I have put together a little gallery of my favorites, please enjoy.

If you would like to discuss how to focus in on your key brand message, why not get in succinct touch.

Lachlan McDougall
Design Creative


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