Limited pyramid-edition of the new Manes album: end-to-end delivery
Manes, one of the most renowned artists on the Norwegian alternative underground scene, have made quite a comeback with this year’s new album entitled “Be All End All”. Much like their countrymen, Ulver, their musical career started with uncompromising black metal and evolved into experimental hybrid of many genres.
To celebrate the release of the album, it was decided that beside the regular CD and LP version, there will be a special limited edition, for die-hard fans only. 8Merch was appointed as a supplier of this edition. But to say that we only manufactured it, would be a huge understatement. We were a creative team that “built” the product from concept to shipment. With artwork designed by Norwegian visual artist Ashkan Honarvar and released by French forward-thinking label Debemur Morti, this album is truly a work of Art from top to bottom.
The label along with the graphic designer approached us with an initial concept of a pyramid. We knew it must be printed from top to bottom and inside out, made out of heavy card stock and housing a CD and an insert. We then started brainstorming ideas about the technicalities and how it should be done. Apparently, it turned out to be quite a challenge, mainly becuase of the materials to be used, print method, glueing, opening, closing any many other things. Having spent several weeks drawing and designing the mockups, we reached a version that was pretty satisfactory. Up to this point, we had been operating on flat sheets of paper and a computer screen, using our hands, pens, rulers and applications for graphic designing. It finally was time to move to the fully tangible thing, so making physical prototypes of the pyramid-style box.
It took a decent amount of time to build mockups and make tests on how to glue, open & close the pyramid and how to place the CD inside. The type of paper to be used, its weight, thickness, surface – everything had an impact on the final result. The material must have been glossy enough to look good on the external part of the pyramid, but on the other side it must have been easy to glue to the cardboard and strong enough to withstand skin touching it while opening and closing the pyramid. We had had a lot of versions tested throughout before we came up with the winner. Then our DTP team designed the exact templates and formulated guidelines, so the artwork creator could prepare files for both inside and outside of the pyramid.
Having all stages and elements figured out, we commenced with the physical manufacturing of this behemoth. It involved die cutting of the core cardboard, laminating printed sheets and glueing everything together. It was a very meticulous process, which required a lot of care and attention as well as skill and professionalism of our team. Taking into consideration the fact that it was a very limited print-run and very custom design, much of the work of putting all parts together were take care by our people, with machines left aside. It ensured very dedicated approach, carefully crafted process and added this “indie” touch to the whole project. When the pyramid was done, we stuffed it with the CD and the insert. We added three foam footers at the bottom and the release was ready!
An edition as special as this one, required also a special treatment when it comes to packing and shipping. 8Merch was also a fulfillment partner for the end customers, so we shipped ready boxes directly to the fans who purchased this pyramid edition on the label’s website. We packed the release in a bubble wrap (double layer on the corners) and then fit it into a custom made shipping box made out of thick cardboard. Everything was made to ensure the safest trip possible.
Pioneering in design and meticulous in execution, the limited edition of “Be All End All” is a perfect example of how creative team and fulfillment department work at 8Merch. All processes are being performed in-house: from brainstorming to prototyping to actual production to logistics of finished products. Cost-effective approach and outstanding result are only a few characteristics of our services for the independent music industry.
Thanks to collaborative attitude of Ashkan Honarvar, Manes and Debemur Morti, we were able to deliver this ground-breaking project to all die-hard music fans that were waiting for the new album.
Here is a gallery of the final product. Enjoy!