P.O.D.’s Latest Album Refused By Most Christian Bookstores

Religious retailers object to Payable on Death's cover art.

Since day one, P.O.D. have loudly proclaimed their faith in God, but lately it looks like merchants of religious wares don’t have much faith in P.O.D.

Around 85 percent of Christian bookstores across the country have refused to carry the band’s latest record, Payable on Death, because of its artwork, which depicts a naked woman with butterfly wings, her arms crossed over her breasts and a banner with the word “Sanctus” (a Latin word for the sung part of the preface in Mass) across her nether region.

The bookstores’ main complaint is that you can see the woman’s pubic bone, a spokesperson for the band said, but they’re also unhappy that the artwork uses a sacred word in a sexual manner. “This is sad, not because P.O.D. need to be carried in those stores, but because for thousands of years the church led the world in great art and music,” the band said in a statement on its Web site.

In 1999 many Christian bookstores refused to carry the band’s major-label debut, The Fundamental Elements of Southtown, unless the artwork was changed, so a version with a completely black cover was printed for those outlets. Before rejecting Payable on Death, bookstores asked P.O.D. to create new cover art, but the band refused, P.O.D.’s spokesperson said.

Meanwhile, the band has shot a video for its next single, “Change the World,” with director Marc Webb, who handled P.O.D.’s “Sleeping Awake” and “Will You.” The clip features live footage of the band intercut with shots of fans singing along in Sydney, Australia; Beijing (at the Great Wall); New York (in Times Square); and Agra, India (at the Taj Mahal).

For more on P.O.D., check out the feature “There’s No Crying In Rock.”