Monday, March 28, 2016

SINGING PRIESTS, MISUNDERSTOOD PRINCES AND BALLSY HOMOS: THE PITCHFORK REVIEW #8


The Pitchfork Review has long been a force to be reckoned with online – ever since 1996 to be exact - but ever since they first published their quarterly paper magazine in 2014 they’ve been almost unstoppable. Refreshing in a semi-tired genre that’s awaiting some serious make-overs, The Pitchfork Review fills a void with their years of expertise, a fantastic design reminiscent of independents and a lot of TLC.


Their eighth issue features 128 pages of musical talent of all genres. Nothing superficial, mind you, but hard-knock essays, political pieces and reviews. Featuring Prince’s journey into his Dirty Mind, the UK club scene of 1986-1990 and queer representation in the music industry of the eighties. “For gay men in England, the dawn of the eighties was a time to fuck and get fucked – by each other, by AIDS, and by Margaret Thatcher’s government”, “It’s not entirely your fault if you don’t quite understand why Prince was such a big deal in the eighties” and “If there’s one thing you know about Catholicism, it’s probably that Catholicism involves priests […] these priests were primarily singers,” are intro’s that make us want to read on, and are the epitome example of the diversity of the all-encompassing Pitchfork.


In content as well as design Pitchfork is refreshing. Where it’s obvious its editors have taken care to dot their I’s and made their layout as eye-catching as possible, they’ve managed to not overdo it. They haven’t strayed into the trendy ‘white spaces’, but have created a straightforward – rudimentary in its jolliest form – and beautifully illustrated magazine. Every issue of the Pitchfork is a document of musical history: “We consider both foreverness and the never was”, which with Pitchfork is less a cliché than it is simply an accurate statement applied to a very cool magazine.


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