Tuesday, August 21, 2012

AVOW #24

Avow #24 $3 Microcosm 222 S. Rogers St. Bloomington, IN 47404
This issue of Avow is a bit of a time capsule for me. Keith writes about bands, people, zines, and topics that mostly happened when I was in my twenties. I’m 40 now. Reading about Karl Alvarez defending Brett Gurewitz in the pages of Tatterfrock zine is like breaking the shovel out and digging that time capsule up. I’m quite certain that there is not one other person in the greater Coeur d’Alene area that I associate with that knows who in the hell those people are or what in the hell a Tatterfrock is (well, maybe one). This is exactly what still draws me to zines today; the fact that not too many people know what they are, even fewer know much about their history, and even fewer still have read any, if at all. For people like me who are tapped into this underworld, and know some of its history, reading about old controversies in a new issue of a long running zine, along with debates about what is and is not punk and/or hardcore, well that just makes me happy. This issue is aesthetically beautiful to look at. Keith has a wonderful design style and is an incredible artist. Avow 24 is mostly record reviews done in a unique way; he reviews old records that meant a lot to him, sometimes for their politics, or the artwork, or the memories of loved ones that they conjured up, and sometimes simply for the sounds coming from the speakers. The writing is great. Also included are some comics about seeking meaningful employment, and an interview with Joe Lachut of ‘Seven Inches to Freedom’ zine that had me disagreeing loudly, to nobody. I love it when an interview does that.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Manifesto #1

Manifesto #1 $2ppd www.edtillman.net
Manifesto #1 is a collection of observations, philosophical swordplay, and stories centered on that most sacred subject of art. The stories are short, unconnected, and written by different authors, but for some reason they seem to flow seamlessly together to create a single entity. Often when I read a zine written by various contributors, each story starts and stops abruptly and without much notice. Sometimes this is fun, more often than not, however, it feels awkward. Not the case with Manifesto. I think that because the focus of each story is that of art, and not the authors, the overall tone of the zine remains the same. This is a nice effect, and this is an excellent first issue.

Somnambulist #19

Somnambulist #19 POB 14871 Portland, OR 97293 marthagrover@hotmail.com This issue of Somnambulist is composed mostly of a story about the author, Martha, going on what was supposed to be a relaxed walking trip with her boyfriend through Oregon wine country. The story is a lesson in making sure that you are properly prepared before venturing out into the unknown. There are also some poetry contributions in this issue. The poem ‘Burnt Sienna’ by A.M O’Malley is an excellent summary of one person’s youthful wanderlust that reminded me of the old zine Gogglebox. Somnambulist, is a perzine with a big personality, and Martha Grover is a prolific writer that doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon.