Both artists have chosen the same piece of flat grey seascape designed by Japanese artist Hiroshi Sugimoto. Chartier's and Deupree's is untouched, while a white equals symbol (=) on No Line On The Horizon marks the only difference.
"Ok, come on people (meaning, U2/et al.) do some research before you release an album cover," writes electronic artist Taylor Deupree on his 12k record label blog.
"For those who don't know what i'm ranting about, U2's forthcoming album No Line On The Horizon [artwork] is nearly an exact rip-off of mine and Richard Chartier's Specification.Fifteen which came out a couple of years ago."
"Specification.Fifteen was created directly in conjunction with Sugimoto and his retrospective at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington DC. So, before you let people run off about how 'cool' the new U2 cover is… show them ours first."
After garnering 'a lot' of interest, Deupree felt some sort of 'final thought' might be in order: "Let me just put it to rest by saying my initial surprise over this whole thing was from a graphic design point of view… I never suggested there was any LEGAL issue here (both parties had legal permission)."
Taylor Deupree is a graphic designer in his own right, so the contempt for U2's careless selection is understandable. Still, this sort of publicity for a relatively small label and artist can't be that bad, can it? Every cloud etc...