A great album has to have the whole package: stellar performances by the artist, poetic lyrics and songs you don't want to get out of your head. But beyond the music, a masterpiece also needs to look like one.

That's right. An iconic album has to have an equally iconic cover. Think about it. Name one of the best albums in music history, and the album's cover will immediately pop into your mind. Even today with digital listening, you still see the little thumbnail of the album every time you click play. You can probably recognize the covers of some of the most famous albums of all time better than you can recognize former classmates.

But to quote MTV's Diary series, "You think you know, but you have no idea." What if there was a lot more to your favorite album covers than we originally thought? That's what U.K.-based agency Aptitude imagines with its new series "Album Covers - The Bigger Picture."

Aptitude expanded upon some of our favorite album covers to show us what could have been going on outside the edges of the images we thought we knew so well. The agency imagines The Beatles' Abbey Road photograph not taken while the Fab Four crossed that famous London street but actually walking along the classic American highway Route 66. That baby chasing a dollar bill on the cover of Nirvana's Nevermind album was actually being chased by a shark and dolphin. Bruce Springsteen's patriotic backside on the cover of Born in the U.S.A. was actually just a guy catching some grub at a food truck. But what's more American than that anyway?

Other albums given this expansive treatment include Adele's 21, Justin Bieber's My World and Michael Jackson's Off the Wall, which includes a very sad and scruffy-looking Macaulay Culkin. Head over to Aptitude's blog to see all of the reimagined album covers, and try your best not to get too creeped out.

[H/T Co.Create]

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Tags: Music Albums