Believe it or not this DIY comic appeared on the market back in 1987 and stuck it out for a short run of only four issues before folding in 1990 (hardly prolific I hear you say). Since then we have had a pregnant pause and after over a quarter of a century we have finally been blessed (or cursed) with Issue Number 5. By fuckin' heck, has the wait been worth it or are things too far removed from our new reality to make any sense?

We get here three tales, namely 'The Trashaholics', 'Rhys Radcap and his Time Travelling Skateboard' and 'Bev T', all characters who have been included in previous issues. The artwork goes from amateurish, to better to best with a distinct untrained talent on show that keeps things under-processed and rough and ready. The first tale regarding The Trashaholics is a day to day affair that many of us can relate to - you know the one, 100% punk band has a member who sells out and then years later hops back on the spiky wagon and finds that the punters are only interested in big names and nostalgia. It hits a nail and makes a point and flows well however I would like some added humour thrown in of the most idiotic order. The second tale concerning Rhys Radcap sees a 'dude' travel back in time to complete his daughter’s homework assignment and also to see a 1982 gig in Stockport. One thing this one does is get you thinking about which gigs you would like to visit and just see how they would hold up without nostalgia soaked glasses on and wayward memories - I reckon I know the answer only too well. We close the pages with the yarn of a lass going to her first gig with a tongue-in-cheek poke at stereotypes and an overview of the warped and weird situations that get us involved in certain punk shenanigans. Ok but a tame tale and a bit of surreal idiocy wouldn't go amiss.

Plenty of foundations to work on here and some good ground to build a fuckin' good read upon. I feel we are still in the embryonic stages as yet and it will be interesting to see where things end up. One thing for sure, more content is needed other than 3 stories - challenge set.

Content - 5

Presentation - 7

Value For Money - 8

Comparative Rating - 7

Issues Best Bits - The Trashaholics



A zine done with utter professionalism and done with a downright acceptance that making a profit is not an option. Having communicated with the creator and constructor of this healthy product it seems that even for £2 people take some persuading to make a purchase - sounds about right. So, after much trying the dude plods on and produces quality issue after quality issue in a complete DIY fashion - and why not?

Immediately striking is the feel and look of the zine, good quality paper, solid semi-glossed cover and a quite pleasing layout. In fact, put this on a shelf in your local store and it certainly wouldn't be out of place. The content is thorough with several interviews taking up the bulk of the pages with a few left at the back kept for gig reviews and CD assessments. The gig reviews are terse and to the point with the main disappointment coming from the fact that they are swayed to the more named outfits out there and very little press is given to the underdogs. The same can be said of the CD reviews with only one or two lower names getting a peep in - quite a shame really but obviously the underdog is not the target audience. Once more the CD lowdowns are brief and without much appetite whetting suggestion but I suspect my longing for something more hulking is a personal nuance that places me in an overly keen minority. The photographs are all clear throughout and the use of monochrome not only adds character but, of course, keeps the cost down.

Overall this offering is a treat and will give great insight into those you are familiar with and those that you are not. I'd like to see a little variation in content with some corned additions such as song of the month, personal top tens, current playlist, ones to watch etc. etc. and definitely more focus on the overlooked but hey, again I may be one of the few - what's new.

Content - 8

Presentation - 10

Value For Money - 9

Comparative Rating - 8

Issues Best Bits - Interviews, photographic quality



Mr Mark Sesin is at the helm of this new script on the block and, as is Mr Sesin's desire, it pushes and peddles the many female fronted and constructed bands out there who, for me anyway, do as good as the bloke bands, if not a little better (it's a bigoted eye-candy thing ya know and one that I don't necessarily agree with but see on numerous occasions). Nonetheless the market is there for this type of promotion and someone has to do it for the more underground scene.   My hands are raised in salute!

Having looked at Mr Sesin's previous productions it is immediately apparent that this is the best and most professional offering to date and so loses a little of the cut, copy and paste DIY recklessness that so many grew up on. In A4 size with a full colour cover the impression made is instant and as one ploughs through the quality pages one can almost taste the effort poured in. Interviews and reviews are staple for a release of this kind but what else do you get - well, in brutal truth little else. Good photographs, a few scribblings about what's out there, a couple of ‘live’ assessments and that's about it but hey...this is the first issue and I am far from disappointed.

The text is well written and besides the odd typo (which I'd struggle to find again) there are no real gripes although I would prefer the interviews to be a little more in depth. The free CD that you get with the mag confirms the value for money and will be reviewed elsewhere on this site, but I can already reveal that most readers will not be disappointed.

This could be the start of a classic series that will tune in a few more to the lasses creating a racket - if so then how can one complain?

Content - 7.5

Presentation - 9.5

Value For Money - 9.5

Comparative Rating - 9

Issues Best Bits - Interviews, photographic quality



Just because it is a punk rock publication doesn't mean a fanzine has to be a roughshod gathering of various snippets and pictures from here, there and everywhere with a distinct emphasis laid on the copy, cut and paste methodology.  There is nothing wrong with this approach but I still welcome a professionally delivered, easy to read compilation of textual matter and quality snaps that reflects a little forethought and attention to detail.  The debut copy of Still Dying is just that and is a tidy little collection of reviews, news and interviews to put many lesser efforts to shame. 
The layout is clear and to the point and printed on more than bog paper which gives the whole thing a feel of subtle professionalism.  Loads of news snippets (as one would expect), a couple of comprehensive interviews (one with Pinch of the Damned should generate interest), several decent CD reviews, a few live reviews, and a nostalgia section that looks back and 'remembers' a band from years gone by - this issue Anti Pasti - will they be headlining Rebellion this year - could be?
The best bit for me is the X-Posed section that reveals the Name, Line-up, Influences, History, Description and Website of various underdog bands that I am sure will all be worth checking out.  I know quite a few of these as this is where my punky heart lies but one or two were new to my nosey nature so a Fungal thumbs up for definite.
I'd better get my order in for Issue 2 and beyond because something tells me this will be a popular little title.
Content - 8

Presentation - 9

Value For Money - 9.5

Comparative Rating - 9.5

Issues Best Bits - CD Reviews, X-Posed feature, Remembers feature



My first impressions of this fanzine were of a value for money publication ideal for curious punkers like myself who are always on the look-out for new bands to check out. How right I was!

At 42 pages long and printed on fair quality paper this A5 offering has a lot to offer. The anecdotal introduction is well put together and gives it a personal edge rather than the cold stated factual option that is too easily found in more advanced textual matter. The reviews are to the point and get the job done adequately and deal with a variety of bands at different stages in their careers.

The comic strip centre pages are really well drawn and break up the punk onslaught well.

A veggie recipe, gig reviews and terse CD reviews of less obvious bands give this offering a unique identity and for the price of 1 nugget is a real bargain. Despite there being a lot of obvious 'local stuff' this is worth a peek by anyone in the scene and the list of recommended websites satisfies my predatory punk instincts.

Content - 8

Presentation - 8.5

Value For Money - 9

Comparative Rating - 8

Issues Best Bits - Toilet Facts, Griswalds Interview, CD Reviews




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