These sheets are different from the four standard sheets available with The Information CD release.
CD with four songs (Cellphones Dead: Edit, Nausea, Think Im In Love, We Dance Alone).
Note: 10 February 2009. I must update this site! I have iron-ons 2-4 to add; also info on the Canadian Information CD version; the “Nausea” advance CD single; a newly discovered alternative version of the Japanese Information CD; the French acetate promo CD sampler; the Information deluxe CD edition; the limited edition sticker poster from www.productofgod.net (I have number 24; Beck has signed the poster in pencil; and the poster is now sold out). Available from January 2009 is a limited edition deluxe vinyl Information package complete with a whopping TEN sticker sheets. See here for more details: http://www.ainr.com/artists.html (I have number 44). For keeping me up to date, I thank Rod Rueger at http://www.anotherpigeonhole.com/beck/tothefuture.htm
In the two-sided sheet (8 1/4'' by 5 3/4''), all of the stickers come from the first standard CD sheet (and the lips are included on Becks websites advance sheet as well). However, all but one of the stickers on this sheet are larger in size than their counterparts on the standard CD sheet, Becks name especially. The only sticker which is smaller than its counterpart on the standard CD sheet is the striped block in the lower left-hand corner. (While the lips are a bit larger than the lips on the first standard CD sheet, they are a bit smaller than the lips on the Becks websites advance sheet.)
In the smaller sheet (4 3/4'' by 4 3/4''), all of the stickers come from the first standard CD sheet, except for the Beck teardrop shape, which comes from the second standard CD sheet. All of the shapes are the exact same size as those found on the standard sheet, except for the Beck teardrop, which, here, is larger.
Unlike all of the other sheets (except for advance sheet 2), the images on this sheet (4'' by 4'') are not separated from one another; this is one single sticker with five different designs on it. The image of the hands making the shadowgraph derives from the first standard CD sheet (and is included on the Becks websites advance sheet as well), but here it is not only smaller but reversed in direction, a mirror image. The cloud also comes from the first CD sheet, but here is larger in size. The Q-Bert-type blocks come from the third standard CD sheet and here are a little bit smaller. The weird humanoid figure comes from the fourth CD sheet and is not only larger in size but also flipped on its vertical axis, another mirror image. Becks colorful name is larger in size than those on the four standard CD sheets and yet still smaller than the one on the four track CD sheet. The backing is stiff paper, not another sticker.
Four track CD -- variation.
The four track CD variation comes with the same small sticker sheet (4 3/4'' by 4 3/4'') as the four track CD described above. This sticker sheet includes the description “INFO1” in the lower left-hand corner. But I haven’t yet seen any sticker sheet identified as “INFO2” or “INFO3”. . .
These two variations on the music download cover art are on display at www.bigactive.com, the website of the design firm that oversaw the art direction of the sticker art for The Information. What makes these two covers different from the ones above is the inclusion of the song title in each montage. The “Nausea” melting letter title is not a sticker that I have seen, but perhaps it exists. The black and white circle in the center of Beck’s head in the second cover is also a sticker that I have never seen, but it may exist as it makes an appearance in a Beck cover artwork display at the Big Active site. Big Active relates that the sticker set for Beck’s The Information comprises 250 stickers in total.
According to my hasty calculations, the four standard CD sheets (UK version) consist of 261 stickers. Add five from the Beck website advance sheet, and the nine completely new stickers on the 7" vinyl, and that equals 275 stickers. But since standard CD sheets 1, 2, and 4 have four instances of the same silver orb sticker, and sheet 3 has two instances of the same, we can subtract 13 from that original total, which gives us a total of 262 stickers. But wait, we can subtract two more, as the human eye sticker featured in sheet 2 returns twice more in sheet 4: 260 stickers. Subtract three more for the Beck lego name which is featured on all four standard sheets: 257 stickers. Subtract a further three more because the same reddish-purplish orb is included on all four standard sheets and we’re down to 254 stickers. The teardrop sky is featured twice on sheet 1 (in different sizes) and once on sheet 4, so we can subtract two more, and we arrive at 252 stickers. The same cloud is seen three times on sheet 1: a blue version, a compressed blue version, and a pink version. 250 stickers. A teardrop shape including a view of a belt and a doorway is featured on both sheet 2 and sheet 3. 249 stickers. The same tree is featured on sheet 1 in two different sizes. 248 stickers. So perhaps I have covered it all now, and the two extra stickers that I haven’t seen on any sheet are the two that were mentioned at the beginning of this section (the “Nausea” song title and the black and white “shimmering” circle).
But what about the maze-like pattern in the “Think I’m in Love” cover, for example? And there are a series of others stickers on the four standard sheets which have the same shape but are colored differently. A multi-pronged ink blot (sheet 2 and sheet 3); a long stripe (1 and 3); a fragment of that long stripe (3); a solid colored circle (two on sheet 1, three on sheet 2, and one on sheet 3); an orb with a specular highlight (green on sheet 4, pinkish-purplish on all of the other sheets). (And then there is the outline of the blue, yellow, and orange blocks on sheet 3 that is filled in with blue and green stripes and reduced in size to make another sticker on the same sheet.) At the moment I have no idea how many more stickers are out there that I haven’t seen yet. The amount could be as high as eleven, or as low as two.
This “poster stickers” sheet is 27 1/4 inches by 19 1/4 inches. It was designed as a promotional item to create displays in record stores. The poster stickers sheet came with a second sheet of the same dimensions which featured the grid motif, the Beck name lego logo, and a wide blank space where the stickers could be affixed. (Alas, I do not have this second sheet in my possession, so I do not have a proper picture of it.) What is especially noteworthy about the poster stickers sheet is the size of the stickers themselves; I have never seen such large stickers before. Evidently this promo item was designed for the United Kingdom, for the name of the album printed at the bottom of the poster is put inside single quotes rather than double quotes; moreover, the text at the bottom of the second sheet includes the phrase “17 new songs”, which can only mean the U.K. version of The Information. The blue smear with the red dots, the curious biped, and the fragment of whimsical landscape come from standard CD sheet 1; the wartime vignette and the “Information” pencil come from sheet 2; and the alien/native figure and the tiger/owl/human hybrid come from sheet 4. The wondrous size of these stickers makes it easy to study their marvellous detail which is somewhat hard to see in their reduced form on the standard CD sheets.
The U.K. release includes two extra songs, so the four standard CD sheets contain eight extra stickers in all. Except for these additions, the stickers on the U.K. sheets are the same as the ones on the U.S. sheets. However, most of the song title stickers are a bit smaller on the U.K. sheets, due to the fact that room had to be made for the extra stickers. There is also a difference in the weight of the sticker paper backing between the U.S. and U.K. versions (see here for more information).
This large sheet (6 3/4" by 6 3/4") is particularly significant for collectors because twenty of the twenty-one stickers are special to this sheet only. Nine of the stickers are entirely new in design, while others are either larger or smaller than their counterparts on other sheets, or colored or illustrated in different ways. The only sticker which is available on the four standard sticker sheets in the exact state that it is found here is the silver orb (which is, in fact, included on all four standard CD sheets). The purple orb is smaller here and paler in color than the similar reddish-purplish orbs included on all four standard sheets; and as for the orange colored orb, there is no orb of that precise color on any other sticker sheet. The “Cell Phone’s Dead” sticker is of the same exact design as its counterpart on the second standard sheet except that it is much larger here. Although the two “Beck” name stickers look similar to those found on other sheets, they are not only much smaller here, but their coloring is different as well: the “K” is black rather than green. Designs which are equivalent in shape but different in color to those found on other sheets are: (1) the teardrop, which is orange and yellow on the third standard sheet; (2) the Q-Bert-type blocks, which are multicolored on the third standard sheet (and the four track CD sheet as well); (3) the long stripy sticker, which is similar to certain stickers on all four standard CD sheets (and also the four track CD sheet); and (4) the two cassette tapes, which recall two other cassette tapes on the fourth standard CD sheet. This leaves nine new stickers (which, however, still recall stylistic techniques of other stickers). The large Beck figure is similar in spirit to the black-clad, guitar-wielding Beck figures from the first and third standard sheets. The skyscraper recalls the two buildings on the first standard sheet as well as the cityscape on the third standard sheet. The curious headpiece and the “SOS” drum are companion pieces to musical instruments included on the third and fourth standard sheets. The automobile with the melting tires might find a parking space beside the red car from the third standard sheet. The two stones are one-of-a-kind designs here, as is the skull. The song title “O Menina” is not included on the American or European sheets because the song is not included on the CDs; nor is it included with the Japanese CD, which does have the song. (As for the slipcase, this is the only version in the series of Information releases which has Beck’s name positioned on the right-hand side of the front cover. In all other versions the lego logo is placed on the left.)