Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Chronicles Zine Issue 1 (2015)

Zines are out there and alive in the underground. It's interesting the quality differences between them not in terms of layout but in terms of actual quality of content. Chronicles, out of Norway, for me, really just destroys the whole idea that "everything can be found on the internet." The content available in this zine is huge in a small, quick to read issue. I applaud Steinar on his efforts here. This first issue is a must have for those looking to delve deep into the histories of the bands present: Ares Kingdom, Pentagram (Chile), Patrons of the Rotting Gate, Blood Mortized, Sol Negro, and Audiopain. There's a lot of other neat things in here though which round out the issue in a way only a fanzine would allow.

The interviews elicit responses from the artists through usage of defined and specific questions that indicate a high level of familiarity on the part of Steinar. For example, asking Chuck Keller specific questions on his relationship with Quorthorn or in depth questions on the themes and imagery of Pentagram's newest release. It all creates an aura of reading something set aside for those that are seeking out more than what you will find in press releases, interviews in mainstream zines, or online in forums.

Also scattered through the zines are quotations about random subjects from older zines. Steinar is clearly an aficionado of the fanzine world. These appear under the title "Truth Be Told." There are a lot of good quotes some that stand out to me: "Black Metal is not really supposed to be a very deep and intellectual form of music..." or "Poland is not too big of a country so too many churches couldn't be burnt." There are also scans of older advertisements and classified ads such as Celtic Frost looking for a drummer, the hilarious Moon Rites interview from a 1997 Norwegian zine, and also some interesting excerpts from a Metallica interview circa 1984-ish.

This is a fanzine fan's zine mostly and for fans of the bands present... it's a must-own. It delivers in the interviews and in the additional filler content. I sincerely hope that Steinar is on his way to finishing up a second issue because this first issue of Chronicles is gold.

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