Dazzling, kaleidoscopic, luscious, colorful—visual descriptors for Shabazz Palaces’ music come naturally, and the band has always put thought and intention behind its album art as well. Yet even with those visual cues, the music remains inscrutable. Such is the joy of Shabazz’s homemade universe, which last month expanded to include a 32-page graphic novel published by Fantagraphics. Quazarz vs the Jealous Machines comes in an enormous 11” x 18” format, with full-color illustrations by Atlanta-based artist Joshua Ray Stephens. The story follows the band’s 2017 album of the same name, each page corresponding to a song. Like Shabazz’s music, it presents fresh, evocative imagery—in this case suggesting intergalactic travel, intrigue, assassination and celebration—without easily relinquishing its meaning.
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