Local Seattle music label Sub Pop may have been half-joking when they pronounced their goal of “world domination,” but thirty years later it looks like they might have achieved it.
In 1988, Sub Pop decided to release Sub Pop 200, a triple LP box set complete with a 16-page booklet featuring Charles Peterson’s photography and cover art by Charles Burns. The compilation featured bands that would define the grunge sound—TAD, Nirvana, Mudhoney, Soundgarden, Green River, Blood Circus, Cat Butt, and Screaming Trees to name a few.
An alum of Olympia’s Evergreen State College, Burns was first commissioned by Pavitt to illustrate cassette covers for the Sub Pop fanzine before designing the compilation’s evocative cover.
The original artwork is part of our collection in Nirvana: Taking Punk to the Masses at MoPOP.