I have a box full of old fanzines from the 1980s that somehow didn’t get thrown away over the years. I’m not sure why I kept these in particular out of several hundred more that passed through my hands, but I’m having fun looking through them again after leaving them to gather dust for such a long time. In some cases I found a note or letter from the person who produced the fanzine, plus I’ve got quite a few flexi discs that were given away free with various issues.

In the aftermath of the punk rock explosion and long before desktop publishing, the internet, filesharing or blogging existed, a new wave of fanzines emerged that soon became as important as John Peel and the NME for finding out about new music and what other people thought of it.

Initially most of these fanzines concentrated on articles about bands, interviews (often done by mailing the artist a list of questions), reviews of records and gigs, gig photos, coverage of local music scenes and so on. But they also increasingly became vehicles for non-musical content - personal and anti-establishment rants, collages of appropriated images, cartoons, art, poetry and “ranting verse”, short stories, social, political and historical issues, the promotion of causes (like vegetarianism, anarchism, anti-war, anti-racism and anti-sexism) or specific organisations (like Traidcraft, Greenpeace, Mencap, Hunt Saboteurs, Animal Liberation Front and Amnesty International) and so on. Spelling mistakes, bad grammar and egomania were commonplace but nobody really cared.

In the beginning individual pages were written either by hand or on a typewriter (or a combination of both) and often illustrated with original drawings and artwork, as well as images and text cut out of newspapers or magazines, which were often used with a sense of irony and literally stuck on to the rest of the content. The pages were photocopied and stapled together by the fanzine’s creator or (if he or she had the money to pay for it) printed by companies like Better Badges. By the end of the decade, more sophisticated alternatives had become available with the onset of personal computing and printing, but these were still very primitive by today’s standards.

A few fanzines ended up selling thousands of copies but the vast majority had much smaller print-runs and many were entirely self-produced and distributed (at gigs and local record shops), with maybe as few as 50 copies in total.

I decided to start scanning and posting the covers of the fanzines I’ve got and also to scan some of the most interesting articles, interviews, photos, reviews, artwork and cartoons that they contain. Although music-based fanzines were my primary interest, I also regularly bought comic-zines, football fanzines and whatever else was out there….

All the scans will be collected HERE

The story so far….

0533 (issue #5 - 1980)

A New Body (issue #1 - 1980)

Alphabet Soup (issue D - 1985)

Anal Violence (issue #1 - 1987)

Baby Bites Back (issue #1 - 1985)

Back Issue (issue #3 - 1980)

Barbed Wire (issue #5 - 1980)

Beaten To The Punch (May 1981)

Beyond The Gutter (issue #1 - 1988)

Black & White (issue #2 - 1980)

Blind Faith (issue #1 - 1982)

Bop Eye (issue #2 - 1981)

Catch 22 (issue #3 - 1981)

Certain Gestures (issue #5 - 1984)

Chainsaw (issue #12 - 1981)

Class War (the “another fucking royal parasite” issue - 1984)

Cobalt Hate (issue #3 - 1980)

Cold Sweat (issue #1 - 1987)

Collusion (issue #4 - 1983)

Concrete Beaches (issue #11 - 1984)

Cool (issue #2 - 1980)

Cool Notes (issue #7 - 1983)

Cross Now (issue #2 - 1980)

Damn Latin (issue #8 - 1981)

Death Or Glory (issue #1 - 1980)

Eccentric Sleeve Notes (issue #4 - 1983)

The Eklektik (issue #2 - 1982)

The End (issue #5 - 1982)

Especially Yellow (issue #4 - 1984)

F@ck (issue #3 - 1980)

Family Favourites (issue #1 - 1983)

Gakbag (issue #1 - 1985)

Gen (issue #2 - 1982)

Grey Matter (issue #1 - 1981)

Grinding Halt (issue #10 - 1981)

How To Make A Record (1980)

Human Soup (issue #1 - 1981)

i-D (issue #3 - 1981)

The Impossible Dream (issue #2 - 1980)

In The City (issue #16 - 1981)

Indoctrination For The Ignorant Children (issue #1 - 1985)

IQ32 (issue #1 - 1982)

It’s Different For Grils (issue #1 - 1980)

Ivor The Anarchist (issue #1 - 1984)

The Joy Of Propaganda (issue #2 - 1982)

Kick (issue #3 - 1980)

Kill Your Pet Puppy (issue #3 - 1980)

Kvatch (issue #5 - 1986)

Last Hints (issue #1 - 1982)

Liberty (issue #1 - 1984)

LPG (issue #1 - 1980)

Made Of Paper (issue #1 - 1989)

Masterbag (issue #15 - 1982)

Mental Children (issue #2 - 1980)

NMX (issue #22 - 1981)

No Easy Answers (issue #1 - 1980)

No Frills Funnies (issue #1 - 1983)

Out On The Floor (issue #3 - 1985)

Panache (issue #13 - 1980)

Peroxide (issue #2 - 1980)

Pink Flag (issue #6 - 1980)

The Poser (issue #5 - 1980)

Pretty Is Not Enough (issue #3 - 1984)

Proper Gander (issue #1 - 1981)

Rising Free (issue #2 - 1980)

Rorschach Testing (issue #1 - 1984)

Rough Justice (issue #4 - 1983)

Safety In Numbers (issue #8 - 1980)

Seditionary (issue #5 - 1981)

Shake (issue #10 - 1980)

Shine (issue #2 - 1989)

Small Axe (issue #11 - 1982)

Smart Verbal (issue #3 - 1980)

Snap (issue #2 - 1980)

So What! (issue #4 - 1984)

Stabmental (issue #3 - 1980)

Step By Step (issue #1 - 1980)

The Story So Far (issue #3 - 1980)

Subvert (issue #5 - 1983)

Sunset Gun (issue #? - 1981)

Texas Hotel Burning (issue #3 - 1985)

Tidal Wave (issue #1 - 1980)

Toxic Grafity (issue #5 - 1980)

Trends (issue #11 - 1980)

Viz (monster sex remix edition - 1985)

Voice Of Buddha (issue #2 - 1980)

Wool City Rocker (issue #6 - 1980)


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