‘American Idol’ star James Durbin rocks in new album cover

Here’s the cover.

It’s almost a time-honored tradition when it comes to “American Idol” contestants over the years — you first album cover is going to be boring. Year after year, we see covers that are really nothing more than smiling faces of the singers we saw on TV — with very little in terms of artistic rendering making it into the picture.

Thankfully, James Durbin has managed to pull a complete 180 on this when it comes to his cover for his Wind-Up Records debut “Memories of a Beautiful Disaster.” The cover does a great job letting you know artistically what sort of album this will be, and the rendering of the photo (in particular the hair) makes Durbin look like a scorned (but still epic) “Final Fantasy” character ready to come out and steal your soul.

Overall, this is the best cover from an artistic standpoint since Adam Lambert’s “For Your Entertainment” back in 2009 — while that drew mixed reactions even from his fans, it was a much-appreciated risk in a time where playing safe is the norm. Going back before that, the last great debut cover we can really think of is Carrie Underwood’s “Some Hearts” following season 4. (There are also a few covers we would like to completely forget about in there — including those of Jordin Sparks, Kris Allen, and most recently Lauren Alaina.)

“Memories” officially hits stores on November 21. Does this cover make you want to buy the album?

Love TV? Be sure to like Matt & Jess on Facebook for more updates!