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’Sup magazine #23
Back issue

’Sup magazine #23

Episode 23 of the magCulture Podcast features indie music mag ’Sup, which lasted 25 issues from 1998—2013, as its featured Back Issue. Here, we share some images of issue 23 of the magazine, from 2010.

Launched in 1998 as a newsprint publication, ’Sup reflected founder Marissa Brickman’s broad taste for music. Unlike other magazines it didn’t specialise in one genre or another, but was instead a platform for its contributors – initially writers but later on photographers too – to share the music they enjoyed.

The cover and contents page (above) were the ideal introduction not just to this issue but to latter issues as a whole. Featured artists range from cover stars Blondes to Oneohtrix Point Never via Mystery Jets and DJ Nate; and the simple design aesthetic is immediately evident from the plain cover to the catalogue-style contents listing.

’Sup was straightforward in content and design; most features were in lengthy Q&A format, and the opening spread of shorts (above) introduces the underlying design scheme, where all text – headlines, body copy and page furniture – changes typeface according to whether it sits on the left or right hand of a spread. Left page = Univers, right = Times (below).

From its early start in newsprint, the magazine added colour and then shifted to a lovely matt paper stock that was a signature feature. Art director Brendan Duggan and designer Eric Wrenn took advantage of the space they had – this issue ran to 170 pages – to develop a very calm but effectively paced publication.

As is already evident from the images above, block colour played a major part in the designs, adding contrast to the otherwise monochrome pages.

Elsewhere, photography provided colour and drama, always full-page and sometimes full-spread (above).

For a special retrospective section on the band Neu, the design template remains the same but the pages turn high-gloss and text becomes multicoloured to match the accompanying images (above).

Marissa remains proud of the magazine she developed; she recently told me she wish more people had been able to see it while it existed. Apart from one final paid issue, ’Sup was always distributed free which meant it was readily available but perhaps not always as appreciated as it should have been.

It still looks very fresh to me, and its openness to different genres – Marissa refers to it as a collage of music from across the world — is completely contemporary.


Editor-in-chief: Marissa Brickman
Creative director: Brendan Duggan
Designer: Eric Wrenn

Listen to episode 23 of the magCulture Podcast here.



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