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March 2016

March 2016

Our monthly look at magazines we couldn’t squeeze into the daily Journal schedule includes titles about mental illness, football, alcohol and Asian queer culture.

Cereal #11
Beautiful, brand-new Cereal features chapters on Tokyo (Japan), Seattle (USA) and Vienna (Austria). Mood and tone is the same as ever – it’s ethereal, minimal and soothing like a day spent wandering through Muji. A new formatting style means that the magazine also includes a chapter on Donald Judd’s New York studio and residence, and there’s also an in-depth, stunningly shot chapter on Fogo Island and the now regular literary supplement Weekend.


Kennedy #4
Apartamento-meets-Port-meets-Dapper Dan when it comes to Greek independent magazine Kennedy. The new issue features interviews with Shakespeare & Co’s Sylvia Beach Whitman, DNA’s Arto Lindsay and documentary filmmaker Cheryl Dunn. Issue to issue, the interviewees are consistently well-curated, and I enjoy the way that from the get-go Kennedy has known exactly what it is and how it wants to look. There have been little changes to style and substance since issue one.


1843 #1
This new lifestyle/ culture quarterly from The Economist promises much; a great provenence, a clever title (the year The Economist launched) and even better tag line (‘The Economist Unwinds’). But what could have been a great, creative foil to the weekly news magazine misses the mark and come across as a rather flat inflight magazine. A missed opportunity.


Too Much #5
The magazine of ‘romantic geography’ from Japan never fails to please. Just look at that new cover – you can’t help but pick it up to have a look. For me, Too Much is an underappreciated title – it’s up there with other magazines that are interested in psycho-geography and architecture, titles like Lost and Pin Up. Issue five looks at the body in space, and it comes with issue three of the TOO MUCH Magazine supplement, an A5 mini-mag art book by Japanese artist Himaa.


Musotrees #2
Published from Malaysia, Musotrees is essentially editor/publisher Kerol Izwan’s personal travel log, with a spectacular breadth of travel being carried out by him and his team of contributors for each issue – this time including Jaipur, Yemen, Kamichocki, New York State and Chester. The highlight is the story of a group of Norwegian kids who race homemade woden cars (‘Olabil’) in an Oslo suburb. It’s great to see increasing numbers of mags from this part of the world.


Picnic #14
Every issue of Picnic features the work of a single artist, making it a little hit and miss. This latest issue features a unique project by photographer Hideo Anze: a series of shots taken on various cameras with his finger over the lens. The result is series of oblongs of patchy red light. Highly repetitive and conceptual but remarkably engaging for its obsessiveness.


Linefeed –All the Things 2015
An occasional print-on-demand project by designer/writer Michael Bojkowski, Linefeed returns to sum up his magazine year, with a strong overview of news and trends. The visual highlight is a series of clever 3-D mock-ups of magazines as consumer items: MacGuffin becomes a can of drink, The Happy Reader a ziplock bag etc.


Glory #1
This new football magazine promises a mix of Cereal and Rabona, and pretty much delivers that. It’s less of an oddity than this might sound; the issue is all about the game in the Faroe Islands, and digs up more visuals and stories than you might expect. Some great photography amid the clean white pages means if you like football you’ll enjoy the mag; but I’m not convinced the two aesthetics quite match.


The Lifted Brow #29
The Lifted Brow has such a prolific output – every time I look in a magazine store there seems to be a new issue out. Graphic short stories by Lyra Hill and Anna Haifisch are particular standouts for me, as is the cover artwork by Ruth O’Leary.


Gaysi Zine #1
The latest queer journal to hit magazine stores is India-based Gaysi Zine, and it’s specifically dedicated to providing a safe space for desis (people from the South Asian Subcontinent) who identify as LGBTQ. It started as a blog, connecting gay and desi (therefore gaysi) people around the world. The zine aims to spread the message to those living in smaller cities or towns who feel isolated from the queer movement.


Nous #6
This petit risograph-printed zine from Manchester gives an empathetic view of mental illness, arguing against prejudice. It’s an experiential publication, with fiction, essays and poems collected through an open call mixing with images bearing the moody blur of the risograph.


Far Ride #4
Korea’s Far Ride is Cereal-meets-Ride Journal. It’s a magazine dedicated to looking at different places around the world through the lens of cycling and it’s filled with minimal, crisp photography and type. This newest volume includes bike journeys through Chiang Mai in Thailand, Cuba and New Zealand.


Pallet #2
This US magazine is well put together and designed, with strong typography and photography. It’s mainly about beer and alcohol, but seems to be slightly unsure whether to sell itself on that subject, which is a shame as it’s got some of the best drink stories: prison beer, a great series of stories from barmen and a well-illustrated piece about obscure plants you can use to distil alcohol.


Hop & Barley #6
Beer-brewing mag Hop & Barley is onto its sixth issue, proving that it’s growing strong and has an attentive audience. Like coffee mag Drift, the layout and photography is decidedly clear, minimal and soothing. Issue six takes a close look at the magazine’s hometown of Bristol, investigating the brewing scene through interviews, photo-stories and features.

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