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Maximum Rocknroll #380 • Jan 2015

ATTENTION! This Friday only, get a super deal on a 12-month subscription to Maximum Rocknroll ...

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Create to Destroy! KnitPUNX

I found Breeann Schauffler of Kansas City, MO, on Instagram. She caught my eye similar ...

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Record of the Week: NO FAITH Dead Weight EP

More complete life annihilation from Western Mass, NO FAITH deal in harsh, sludged-out powerviolence, bookended ...

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Christ On Parade!

MRR Radio #1428 • 11/23/14

This week's radio show brings you Rob and an old MRR shitworker Paul revisiting the ...

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MRR Presents: Friday Fuckin' Funnies! #62

NOWHERE CITY by Vickie Smalls! More great comix by Vic at nowherecitycomix.tumblr.com LIFE IS POSERS! Loads more at lifeisposers.com Every Friday ...

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Zine of the Week: No Exit Vol. 5


August 10th, 2012 by

This is a hard hitter. Cool Greek zine featuring interviews with D-takt and Rapunk Records, Amebix, Pyroklast, Deathhammer, Stripmines, a tribute to Void, movie reviews of my second favorite genre: action, featuring one of my favorite action movies, John Woo’s Hardboiled, a photo spread, very well done reviews and a small section of ads in the back. There is also a guest column by our very own newbie coordinator and, no, that is not the (only) reason this is a good zine… No Exit is being created among crumbling antiquated and fatally flawed infrastructure; in a dangerous climate of power grabbing which has created turmoil and dangerous situations with real human consequences. One could argue that strife creates fertile ground for creativity, but that’s easy to say when you are sitting in an easy chair watching “strife” on the news. What I will say is that there is no level of desperation or overwhelming level of nihilism that a weaker set (norms) might succumb to in a similar situation that would snuff out the creativity or love of punk here. The level of crazy shit going on in Greece is real, but rather than an overt expression, this zine is infused by and informed by it, in the interview style to the humor to the reviews. Great zine, good read and a reminder that nothing can keep the punks down.

To get your own copy, go to noexitzine.blogspot.com or write to nofuturezine {at} gmail(.)com



Zine of the Week: Excitement Level Zero


July 12th, 2012 by

We’ll take a short break from all of the MRR history and dive into some cool shit happening in the here-and-now. This review of issue #3 of Richmond, VA, fanzine Excitement Level Zero written by Bob Goldie appears in Maximum Rocknroll #351. You can order Excitement Level Zero #3 from Grave Mistake Records — and you can also check out ELZ #2 on the Sorry State site…

After getting really cynical about the dejected state of affairs in the current punk scene, I was mercifully relieved to come across this boss issue of Excitement Level Zero. In the spirit of the old days, before Hot Topic-style, computer generated, self congratulatory punk magazines done in the name of obtaining free records (or fucking CDs), this Virginia-based hardcore rag comes across as a work of authentic conviction done in true DIY cut-and-paste style and genuine fuck-you attitude. So what’s inside? After a classic full-page photo of CRIPPLED YOUTH there is an interview with a Canadian hardcore band called WORD ON THE STREET, whom I had never heard of, but totally want to check out now. Another feature that I totally appreciated was an attempt to list and assess all of the INFEST bootlegs that have ever appeared. And these bootleg reviews, like the other record reviews found throughout, are honest and to the point. Next is an interview with the awesome band MAD WORLD, followed by a road trip journal about heading up to New York to check out BOSTON STRANGLER and some other bands. The whole issue is pretty basic and can be read in ten minutes, but it’s got the spirit and is one of the best things I’ve come across in a few months.

Write to Excitement Level Zero c/o Pat Madden / 243 South Laurel St. / Richmond, VA 23220

— Bob Goldie



Zine of the Month: Rad Party #42


June 9th, 2012 by

In commemoration of our newest MRR Photo Issue, our Zine of the Month is a photo zine from noted zinester/illustrator/photographer Stéphane Delevacque. This review, by Julia Booze, appears in the latest issue as well — buy it now!

The package I opened came with three thick photo zines and a one-page foldout! Not sure if that is what you get for the listed price — maybe that cover price is just for the main anniversary issue, celebrating 20 years of Rad Party… holy shit! So amazing to me that anything can last that long. All of these zines are very professional feeling, maybe because they are printed and the paper quality is above average, either way they have absolutely beautiful photos. There is a hefty catalogue breaking down of all past issues, showing the cover and telling what each issue was about. It came out as part of a zine exhibit highlighting noteworthy long-running zines. Since I can only sort of glean a little meaning here and there, I am guessing about what it all says. I don’t think you need to read French to enjoy Rad Party #42, which contains a lot of nice band portraits, some familiar faces and a show review to accompany each photo. I bet this zine is considered a national treasure. If you are curious but afraid to spend the money, there is a blog that shows some of the awesome photos. I tooled around on it for a while enjoying my feeble attempts to read it all.

Rad Party Photo Blog

 



Read a Book! The Encyclopedia of Doris


December 2nd, 2011 by

The Encyclopedia of Doris
Cindy Crabb
Doris Press

The long awaited Encyclopedia of Doris is here, and it is the so-very-special collection of all of Cindy Crabb’s zines that have come out since the Doris Anthology. If you somehow missed the past decade of Doris, Cindy has been organizing her writing within the framework of letters of the alphabet.  She started doing this with the intention of making it all into one big book in nine years. Each issue covered three letters, and the multiple subjects she assigned to each letter were sometimes the first names of revolutionaries, or of friends of hers that are badass and inspirational; some of the letters go with recipes or herbal treatments, some with times in history or ideas. Sometimes she interprets the letter to fit whatever she wants to talk about, and it always ties in neatly. She conducts interviews, profiles radical discourse, draws cute comic versions of what she is talking about, and shares her take on making a life worth living. Included also are new writings interspersed with interviews other people did with Cindy about playing music, being an anarchist, being a feminist, being a punk over thirty, and more.

The fact that quite a few zine writers are turning into book writers these days presents us with a powerful sense of history. It isn’t just that the audience becomes too big to continue a photocopied print run, though surely once your publication numbers shift from two digit numbers to three, even to four, that means the work is important and affecting. This is history. This is a history book. Sure, it’s the history of one person’s perspective, but it covers such a vast spectrum of the worst things that have ever happened and also the best things, that everyone has something to learn or the chance to identify with the subjects herein. Blogs are all right, but it is important to have this writing all in one tangible place. Having an anthology provides a bigger context than a single issue — also some people never had access to the original zines. It will become a cultural artifact for the future punks or feminist scholars to puzzle over and study, while those who had exposure to the zine from the beginning can reflect on the magnitude of a whole decade going by.

To give you an idea of the incredible breadth of Cindy’s writing, if you indexed Doris you would come up with such a huge interdisciplinary range it would be like trying to throw a net over radical history, survivor support, secrets, health care, feminism, privilege, anarchism, resources, networks, critical thinking about unlearning shitty social conditioning, being in jail, gender, self-help, how-tos, community projects, girl gangs, reaching sobriety, listening…and on and on. Probably my favorite letter in the Encyclopedia is “P.” It covers Prison Abolition, ♥ Punk ♥, the Pitchfork political strategy (five prongs), Power, Primitivism (a conversation with Chris Somerville), and Protection. Under “G,” Cindy covers the immense difficulty of grief, of the loss of a parent, of how hard it is to grieve when everyone is afraid to talk to you about it.

Sometimes I feel Cindy points out the obvious, and it serves as a reminder of how easy it is to lose track of what actually matters. Then I find out she didn’t know what “LOL” means until recently and I want to cry with joy on how refreshing her worldview is. In “Q is for Questions” she had other people ask her questions such as, “How do you discipline yourself to filter out the unimportant stuff and focus on the important?,” which discusses making a five-year plan in order to have goals to reach for that you can be okay with working on slowly. When you are trapped in the mire of day-to-day survival, the sudden revelation that some things just take a long time puts it all into perspective: “So even when I have no motivation and no hope, I just look at my five year plan and try to figure out what the fuck to do next.”

You can’t talk about Doris without acknowledging how significant it is in the world of sexual assault survivor resources. I am certainly not an expert on how much is out there on the subject, but that’s my point. Access! When I was a stumbling teen, confused and damaged and totally alone in my suffering of sexual assault, recovering (or trying to) from an incredibly emotionally abusive relationship, Doris saved my life. I felt isolated and trapped, I didn’t realize I should have been seeking support, and I happened to read about how Cindy was feeling the same thing I was and I realized it wasn’t my fault, I didn’t cause it, and I wasn’t alone. I can’t impart to you how important this writing has been to me, simply talking about the unspeakable, normalizing the experience, and removing the shame associated with having this shit happen to me. For the letter “H” she writes about “Hell.” Not the Hell that is the imaginary fiery place downstairs, but the concept of the worst possible circumstances to be faced with. Discussing sexual abuse and assault is the most difficult part to read, and the most personal. Legions of people have been affected by Cindy’s unique ability to confront the symptoms of abuse in such an inclusive manner, so honest, and unashamed, so as to reveal how awful even the simplest (and sadly, utterly commonplace) manipulation can be, how much it can fuck our lives up. I am just one of how many hundreds or thousands of people who have found strength in her testimony, and hope in her courageous pursuit of the truth.

I feel proud that this anthology exists, that somehow the incredibly healing necessity of writing one’s story can ultimately become a radical resource for so many others, while remaining entirely DIY (that is, self-published and therefore impossible to co-opt or commodify.) While doing a little research for this review I found out that Cindy’s diaries and papers are housed at the Schlesinger Library of the History of Women in America at Radcliffe, Harvard. Doesn’t that mean we are winning?

—Julia Booz Ullrey



Zine/Comp Review: Lost Tapes from the Federal Sessions


March 17th, 2011 by

Lost Tapes from the Federal Sessions

Lost Tapes from the Federal Sessions, a new zine-slash-cassette-comp out of London, UK, has been put together as a tribute to the more organic and personalised ways of finding out about new music. Firstly, forget about whether the zine comes with a tape, or the tape comes with a zine, because that may well send you into a frenzy of confusion, and enjoy 21 tracks of exciting current bands that sonically cover pretty much the entire spectrum of DIY punk rock and hardcore.

Each band gets a comprehensive interview that covers their formation, band achievements, related projects of members and personal/political standpoints (with questions written especially for them, not some kind of standard questionnaire, which is cool) as well as a piece of artwork, seemingly inspired by their name. While James has concentrated on his home scene of the UK, there are some North American bands included (notably the excellent Street Eaters, who I hadn’t heard before opening up this lovely punk parcel).

Art by Ellie May Roberts

This beautifully-packaged, large size, 54-page zine (sealed in a hand-stamped, stencilled envelope with a waxy kiss) is an awesome reminder of why, parallel to the endless treasure hunt for rare gems from days gone by, it’s as important as ever to document what’s happening in your back yard/basement — especially when what’s happening sounds this good!

Bands include: Saturday’s Kids, Woolf, Jesus of Spazzareth, Damages, Bird Calls, The Sceptres, Small Bones, Battle of Wolf 359, Human Hands, Guilty Parents, Dead in the Woods, Facel Vega.

£5 ppd in the UK . Email cyslabe {at} gmail(.)com for US/distro.

losttapesfromthefederalsessions.blogspot.com