Zine Reviews!!!

A new wave of publications clutter the Long Haul shelf. These fresh faces makes it easier to not rely on feeding at the trough of the corporate agenda (im looking at you NY TIMES). Hey also we got new issues from Node Pajomo, Muchacha, Dreams Of Donuts, Asswipe, Shards of Glass in Your Eye, The Stowaways and No Gods No Matresses — all of which we reviewed recently. Their contact is the same, and guess what, their zines are improving. So look those ones up as well. (eggplant)

That’s Not Okay-Boundaries for the Conflict Avoidant

A mostly light-hearted zine about how to prctically and gently apply boundaries to our every day lives without being grumpy assholes. Well-written and ridden with cute drawings. (enola d!)

New World Rising summer 2013
PO box 97
Hudson, NY 12534

A publication with the rough edges showing. The writing is proudly anarchist and…. freshman. The topics are presented as if reciting the A-B-C’s of black bloc activism: genetically modified foods, bee colony collapse, rebellion to authority and consensus decision making are raised and dispensed with generic abandon. The lack of depth or nuance will probably service Jr. High students wishing to survey an alternative scene as they raise a bold voice to mainstream culture. The unfocused prose and politics has as much funk and honesty as an open mic nite at a sketchy café. Maybe future issues will kick ass — already there’s potential because some gems of personality emerge from it. The pages crowded with words and art show real care in the production. The evidence of actual hands engaging in any open space make it distinct from the “Wordshop” variety of literature. It’s creative whole resembles a publication not seen much since shit made in the 1980’s. Another plus is the off set printing, this makes some pages have smears of ink that give off an intoxicating smell. (eggplant)

Meditation Is Easy/Tyler Twombly’s Guide to Meditation, Hypnosis and Cults tylertwombly@gmail.com davidgodzilla@gmail.com

One side of this zine is clean and straight-forward how-to, the other handwritten history and debunking of the transcendental meditation cult and resources to learn TM techniques without paying for it. Smart split, Complimentary and informative. (enola d!)

Something For Nothing #66 & #67
516 Third St NE
Massillon OH 44646
Free (a couple of stamps)

Let me warn the most radical out there that this work is made from an avowed Christian. Thankfully he doesn’t use the space to convert readers. But that doesn’t diminish the subtle creep factor. Christians have a tendency to insinuate an agenda into places (like punk rock) that is seemingly harmless. And yet so much harm is created by psychopaths using Christianity as a refuge. This zine is now 25 years old and having to read “Thanks to God” over the years instantly activates my dyslexia. It is a competently made production that is attractive to look at even if the words are slow food. The MR&R reviewer really didn’t like the 15 pages in #67 devoted to chronicling the gas station the editor worked throughout the 1990’s. I was about to agree when I found myself with a job and reading with increasing interest during my breaks. It is a flaw of American culture to give primacy to “exciting” things–over our real life experiences. Also the existence of Something for Nothing marks the in between era of the 1980’s when zines were focused on music and politics, and the 90’s zines — which were mostly personal musings. The combination as seen here goes to providing a rare outlook of the world. Both 66 & 67 have numerous pages dedicated to slice of life entries as well as pieces on music. Roots reggae (like Strictly Roots etc) and the Hard Core band 7 Seconds are given ample space of contemplation by someone who cares. At worst sometimes relating irrelevant information. But his shear love of the music genuinely sparks my interest and gets me to visit those sounds. (eggplant)

Stoner Doom #1

A kinda sci-fi graphic novel zine that involves stoners and doom but exceeds the expectations given by those descriptors. This is hot off the press and the first in what will be a series. Intricate artwork that shows a lot of time, thought and maybe caffeine inspired creation. (enola d!)

Baitline!!! #46
74A Coleridge St.
San Francisco, CA 94110

Baitline!!! is back with another freaky issue! Look inside and you instantly feel like you’re in another world. This FREE classified includes prisoner letters, show fliers, penpal requests, people looking to hook up, and public service announcements – all adorned with some pretty scandalous drawings. Send Baitline!!! your ads, fliers, and wildest desires! (V)

Bookish Beasts #1 Spring 2013

An organ of the center of sex and culture…um pun intended. My first view of it was that it exemplified everything that is a bummer of present day San Francisco (where it originates). That is its made by head smart experienced people but presented in a sleek nothingness filtered through a computer. The whole “Everything must be clean,” hegemony. I mean there’s plenty of art but flipping through it the shitty resolution that was used makes it all look forgettable. I truly miss the grisly hand made underground papers. Alas once I really sat down with it did it start to warm my center. I liked the opening piece explaining the Center’s reasoning for collecting sex related materials. And later I learned that at campus libraries the bathrooms with double doors are best to look for when cruising for a hookup — that made me stop to think. And admittedly some of the pictures are pretty cool. I think the future issues they will fine-tune the art of getting your eyes to stick to the pages. Sex is communication. Zines is communication. Perfect match eh? (eggplant)

Maximum Rock N Roll #365
PO Box 460760
San Francisco, CA 94146

The October issue of this long-running punk zine brings us a Czech Scene Report, interviews with the bands Kontrasekt, Big Black Cloud, Violent Party, and more. What sets Maximum apart from the rest is it’s opinionated columns and review sections, spotlight on punk bands and DIY projects from all over the world, and it’s brought to us each and every month on gritty, black and white newsprint. I love that anyone can submit an interview or a guest column, and if you live in the bay area and want to help out, they are always looking for shitworkers. Keep your eyes peeled for the Queer issue in January. (Van)

Specious Species #6
www.speciousspecies.net, lbelly.donohoe@gmail.com

In this issue of Specious Species, Joe explores the topics sex and death. This zine is packed with information and filled with some of the best interviews I have ever read. There is an interesting interview with Wendy O. Matik about her views on polyamory, a spotlight on Cathee Shultz and her Museum of Death, poetry, short stories, a brief history on Grigori Rasputin, and much, much more! I’m still combing through this zine (all 142 pages) and learning interesting facts about each subject. Specious Species is always a pleasure to read and is HIGHLY recommended for those interested in underground culture. (Vanessa)

1636 Fairview St Berkeley, Ca 94703

I started writing the author of this zine, Tomas Muniz (of Rad Dad), a postcard about how brilliant, beautiful and emotionally stirring Dirty is before I had even finished reading it. Short prose and poetry about the body, touch, intimacy, love, insecurity. Those secret kinda of things we’re not supposed to talk about. (enola d!)

Cometbus #55, #55.5- ‘Pen Pals’ and ‘Love you Like Suicide’
PO Box 4726 Berkeley, CA 94704

In ‘Pen Pals,’ Aaron writes about his complicated and platonic friendship with Yula, a feisty, stubborn Ukranian girl who also acts as his sidekick as they roam the streets of Berkeley. On these same streets resides ‘Iskra,’ a leftist paper that Aaron describes as ‘no frills and no fun,’ which he finds refreshing and inspiring. As ‘Iskra’ is taken off the streets, so is Yula, as she moves away and keeps in touch with Aaron anonymously through postcards. In ‘Love You Like Suicide,’ Aaron hands the pen over to Jo Treggiari. Jo’s story is much darker and takes place in Oakland, more specifically, Ghost Town, an area where people walk around like the living dead. This is a story about heavy drug use and addiction. It is also about Jo’s friend, Holly, who she loves so much that it hurts. The ending is tragic, but the writing is beautiful and compelling. Although these stories are extremely different, they both share a common theme. They are both about complicated (and important) friendships, letting go of the past, and moving on the best you can. I’m glad Cometbus is still kicking and bringing us poignant and thought-provoking stories about growing up and staying punk. Here’s hoping for 55 more issues! (Van)

Storming Heaven #1 June 2013

Anarchism from Seattle. Made by people who would seem to spend a lot of time on the internet finding insurrectionist related news then venting on the streets afterwards. No tolerance for liberalism here though not quite ready to advocate we all pick up guns or leave bombs in banks. I can see that on the night each new issue is printed minor property damage will probably visit the corporate business part of town. If this review were a scratch and sniff your nose would be greeted by the fresh smells of rain and spray paint.(eggplant)