Though Colorado-based Ska Brewing started in 1995, the brewery’s name echoes the late 1950s, when the music genre of ska first started in Jamaica, an intoxicating mix of Caribbean mento and calypso with layers of jazz and R&B. Ska Brewing’s graphics, however, also reach back to the time when ska the music genre broke in the United Kingdom, especially the Two Tone-era pioneered by The Specials.
Think lots of black and white plaid.
Only Ska Brewing took that aesthetic and infused it with 1950s pulp vibe—as if Dick Tracy flirted with R. Crumb. Then the brewery wrote out the whole thing into a noir-style comic book—The Legion of Ska—that tells the story of indie brewers fighting against the big, bad corporations, complete with heroes (the brewers and staff) and a cast of villains like Pinstripe, a skeleton who operates as the President and Chief of Conglomeration. This mythology—and art—naturally carries over into the art that graces Ska Brewing’s bottles and cans. Here’s a handful of some of the best.