The April newsletter in May...just! It might not interest you, dear reader, but it does me. (And I thought I was losing it, not a welcome feeling I can tell you. But onto something more serious...)
The 'perilous' state of our economy is great business for some, especially TV pundits and dubious hedge fund managers, but perhaps not so great for the majority of us.  Either we poor bastards at StormStudios have become severely unfashionable and therefore our work strongly disliked by some labels or the dwindling economy dissuades them from caring and/or investing too much dough in covers. I don't blame them particularly 'cos I guess we are a luxury at the bottom. But nor am I grousing - I criticise labels freely and regularly, but not for this...

A more interesting aspect is to be found courtesy of the internet; where communication / the passing of information is rife and access easier.
This means that we are currently approached directly and, quite often, by bands via email, which is all very nice, and sometimes humourous, but says a lot, I think, about money and the parlous state of affairs in some quarters. For example, musicians trying to make their way and finding labels uncooperative or disinterested. But at least they persevere in getting their music out into the world and for this I admire them hugely.

Yet such emails of enquiry begin similarly: "Storm, you are a maestro (blush blush) and we'd love it if you would consider doing a cover for us, but we have little money..."
I'm flattered, then dismayed. How can I answer without appearing mean spirited if not actually mean? We are, after all, working chaps, mouths to feed, families to care for like everybody else.
But I'm flattered and like designing, so can you help dear reader..?
Herewith (above and besides) are two roughs we submitted to an Italian band from Milan called Voodoo Highway, following a charming email from Fillipo, their spokesman.
Which would you choose? And what should I say to him?

Hard rock music and a preoccupation with the turning point - leaving home in the country at 18 to face adulthood in the city, stepping into the unknown, led on by a woman, but about whom he doesn't feel badly.

(On re-reading, the above sounds like a moan, but it's more a lament - if only we'd discovered an economic method of working, not indulging in real things like large sculptures, pyrotechnics, numerous models, distant locations etc.  But the tide is not turning just yet).
The Raging Storm - Softback Edition out today!
StormStudios and de Milo are delighted to announce that The Raging Storm is now available in paperback.
And to celebrate the release we have exclusive offer for subscribers to this newsletter. In addition we're running a competition to win a signed copy...

Exclusive offer
Enter the code: 
STORM FORCE 5 and receive a £5 discount off the retail price of £25.

Answer the following question to win a signed copy of the paperback:

What connects the album cover images for Wish You Were Here and Presence?

Feel free to elaborate.  Answers, as ever, to:

Closing date is Friday June 15 and we'll contact the winner shortly thereafter. And as an extra bonus all correct entrants will have their name published in our next newsletter!

And finally we have a two exhibitions in the pipeline. Details as follows:
- Ostend: In a Napolenic fortress by the sea, no less! Opens 21 June and runs until early September
- The Oxo Tower: on London's South Bank. To accompany, naturally, some athletics meet down the river. Opens July 12 - 29
Storm, May 31st