ELO were not cool in 1977 when Out Of The Blue was released. Punk was cool, what ELO was HOT. Even though this was a double LP with an 18 minute prog opus, it was one of the biggest hits Jeff Lynne and company ever had.
The wikpedia entry on this LP has a swell discussion of the album art so I’ll just quote it and be done with it:
The large spaceship on the album’s cover (by now symbolic of the group) was designed by Kosh with art by Shusei Nagaoka. It was based on the logo Kosh designed for ELO’s previous album, A New World Record, which connected with Star Wars and Close Encounters of the Third Kind fever. It also looks like a space station with a docking shuttle from 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). The number JTLA 823 L2 which is featured on the shuttle arriving at the space station is the original catalogue number for the album. The album also included an insert of a cardboard cutout of the space station as well as a fold-out poster of the band members. The space theme was carried onto the live stage in the form of a huge glowing flying saucer stage set, inside which the band performed.
Okey dokey, here’s the cover:
Here’s the back cover:
What would a 1970’s art-prog-pop double LP be without trippy interior gatefold art?
Finally, here’s the whole LP in playlist format. Beware of commercials: