Zine Reviews

zine reviews

Zines are a powerful tool in today's world, especially for the people who make them. Within these pages you can be as creative, political, and personal as you want to be without being edited or silenced. As the NSA begins to spy on our every move, there's more reason to make and read zines to keep our lives offline. These tiny, stapled manifestos aren't just a source of information, but a means of communication. Any zinester will tell you that they've found a few penpals, band mates, or close friends thanks to the zines that they've created. As if that's not a reason to get involved, we're also helping to fight capitalism. Our self-copied and printed mags hold more value than money within the underground world and often times, can be traded not just for other zines, but for tapes at a punk show or free coffee and food at your favorite collective bakery. Every year we see handfuls of new zine fests popping-up, along with hundreds of new titles made by those who are inspired. This is proof that zines are very much alive. Some of the zines reviewed on this page are brand new, while others have been around before most of us even knew what a zine was. We hope you find a new favorite zine to read or maybe even a new penpal and friend to write to. (Vanessa)

Asswipe #5

asswipemagazine@gmail.com

$2/Trade

This is an "interview and other stuff" issue conducted with the likes of Bay Area local musicians/other crafty people. To me it reflects accurately on the spontaneous nodes of a complex web of creative energy that brings many of us to crowded and low-lit spaces to witness its outlet. This ish of AW, I think, is a great starting point for people wanting to plug into the local scene in its wondrous expansiveness and potential. (torn)

Dayglo Ay Hole

c/o Ben Passmore 335 Jane Pl.

New Orleans, LA 70119

When this comic came in for Slingshot! to review I was a bit skeptical of it thinking it was gonna be a total brofest upon first glance (there is a character that looks eerily like many XVX hardcore kids I know!--not that they're all bros or anything…). I decided to give it a chance mainly because I appreciate the effort it takes to produce a (color!) comic of this quality. It turns out that the protagonist is undergoing a crisis in terms of masculinity in a post-apocalyptic world (which the author at some point recognizes is a cliché comic/fiction setting). The comic is worth checking out and it seems from the looks of Ben's tumblr that there is progress on a second issue [?]. (torn)

MalintZINE #1

malintzine.com

A zine by radical women involved with the struggle for Mexican American Studies (MAS) in Tucson, Arizona. Mostly prose, there's a lyrical sense in most of the writing that gives the whole zine flow along with the poetry, and creative formatting from page to page similarly interacts with the art. Sexual assault, a gay bashing, and fat phobia are confronted within communities of color and the struggles against racism and for MAS. Suggested listening through a mix tape page and suggested reading are also included. (Alex Iwasa)

Kids of the Black Hole: Perspectives On The North American Punk House

edited by Bryan May

brybry at riseup dot

Mostly dealing with Punk Houses in Portland, Oregon and Santa Cruz, California where the editor has lived, there's also one article about an old Punk House in Portland, Maine, the Coyle St. House. This is a long overdue contribution to the body of literature dealing with different forms of collective living. Articles, artwork and photography are mixed well, though the tone is largely negative. Far better than the fluff pieces that usually circulate that make out collective living to be the be all and end all with little or no imperfections, it's largely a synopsis of everything that can go wrong with living in a Punk House, with little of what makes it one of my favorite forms of collective living. (Alex Iwasa)

The Hen Fall Fuckery 2013

theboulderhen@gmail.com

710 31st St. Boulder ,CO 80303

A new publication that captures some of the stray voices that pass through a local info shop. There is some variety in subject and tone. Intelligent article on gender is noteworthy yet probably wouldn't make sense to most people outside the radical community with its language and topic. Other articles can tip more into the rant category. Lots of anger on some pages while others have an ultra-sensitive critique of their own messages. At best the anger is cut with a raw humor (multiple titles proclaiming FUCK). The zine so far represents a lively underground burning next to a college in a mountain city – a document that whole continents are being formed in tiny liberated spaces. (eggplant)

Wiseblood

c/o Fishspit 1304 175th pl. N.E.

Bellevue, WA 98008

Have a beer with this zine. Like all nights drinking the stories might start to spin into big tales of comic proportions. The ones here seem preoccupied in telegraphing outrage and anarchy (as it is practiced after 30 years of punk). With over 50 issues out there "Fishspit" looks to have his fingers warm typing -- trying to get some laughs going on this cold planet. (eggplant)

The Match - #112

PO Box 3012 Tucson, AZ 85702

$3 or donation

Living up to its name, The Match is a great anarchist rag that will spark thoughts and ideas inside your head. Its tone is intelligent and clear, a little long-winded at times, but not too preachy, which I enjoyed. My favorite essays were about the evils of alternative newspapers, namely the weeklies that you can find in every major city, and the debate regarding the SF Anarchist Book Fair and sex workers' rights. The letter and review sections are highly entertaining and I appreciate the time and thought that Fred, the editor, puts into creating this paper. (Vanessa)

Heavy Lidded: Scenes From the Bummer Punk Epoch

yacobdafisk@gmail.com

$2 or trade

The bummer punk scene in Oakland is explained by Yacob, an experimental, noise-punk musician. Printed are his lyrics from various bands that he's been in. The lyrics are relatable, poetic, and bleak. The frantic layouts match the words inside and at the end, there's a short children's story about a "happy rino" that made this reviewer laugh out loud. I recommend this to anyone who is music-obsessed and wants a peek inside the bummer punk movement before it's gone. (Vanessa)

Winterview #0, Summer 2013

winterviewpunk@gmail.com, winterviewpunk.wordpress.com

Premier issue of Winterview, a music fanzine covering a good chunk of the punk/hardcore/DIY music scene in Greece. This issue is filled with thoughtful and sincere interviews that capture the current state of the Greek punk and hardcore scenes. Highlights include an interview with Mike from 'Up the Brushes,' a flier-obsessed punk who posts and collects fliers on his website. There's also a scene report on Patras City that gives a brief history of the various squats and collectives that host punk shows in this area. The content in this zine makes up for the sparse layouts and I can't wait to read future issues and keep up with the Greek music scene. (Vanessa)

Trash Heap #1,2,3

23 S. Owyhee St.

Boise ID 83705

A lot of heart can be found in this chronicle of North Western counter-culture. And not the usual degeneracy is on display. The writer is a recent escapee from a Christian upbringing and an even more recent retiree from being a dirty traveling kid. Shameless references to both experiences are tied into the bigger questions of punk, friendship and having some excitement for life still as America works to deaden everyone's senses. (egg)

Dwelling Portably December 2013

Po Box 181

Alsea, OR 97324

Tips on how to keep food cool, bike riding for beginners, assembling rigs to carry on back packs and other things you should have been taught in school. If you're looking to live on the cheap, efficiently and close to the patterns of nature this will feed you on the long run. Descriptions of removing a tick using a thorn burned my inner eye. It's like an austere Farmer's Almanac or Whole Earth Catalog with almost no graphics or layouts separating the flashes of wisdom. As with those established resources there is a real sense of a conversation going on in these pages. Personally not all this technical info can make my eyes wet, but you might be into nautical tips when the lights go out and the water rises. (egg)

Something For Nothing #68

516 third st NE

Massillon OH 44646

The introduction admits that fatigue has slowed down production on this issue but it would be hard to tell if he didn't say so. The reviews of soda, zines, books, and music continue SFN's work documenting overlooked gems in our environment. Also enclosed is a deeper look at an obscure band written using a mix of styles including discography, review and autobiography. Appreciating teenagers who play music such as Hogan's Heroes proves to be unusual -- as well as the kind of journalism that is often exclusive to zines. The layout has more care than most people do in maintaining their car. This ride has been rolling for quite sometime and its free seat makes it inviting to get into it. ( egg )

New Hearts New Bones #11 December 2013

cheeringandwaving.tumblr

It's been awhile since I've seen a zine of just collages and I miss the format. The medium can transform mundane images and open up new worlds on a page. The experience in this zine can be like observing multiple conversations at a party. While some of the content here does this and does it well, other pages are cluttered and mysterious. Checking this out is a good way to break out of constrictive reality. (egg)