So I finally got my hands on a copy of State. The garage across the road from work didn’t have it (they haven’t even got around to stocking 3 phone credit yet, so it’s no surprise) and Fresh, our local supermarche, was also out, although they’ve only just started selling The Dubliner.
I really like the design – it reminds me a lot of Northern Ireland’s very fine music mag Alternative Ulster.
I really like the way the articles in its opening ‘Incoming’ section set the musical scene (“…Punk has blown itself out, new wave was waving goodbye and new tribes were n the move…”); not, like so many other music mags, snobbishly assuming that the reader has an encyclopedic knowledge of music history.
I really like that it’s an Irish music mag that’s about music.
I really, really like the photography.
I like the bite-size pieces – the ’50 words on…’, the ‘insane in the membrane’
I like that they give their main interview a hearty amount of space. Too many mags try to condense it all down to a watery 800 words.
Like Una, however, I did think it might have a small case of “old f**kers on the cover” syndrome, but completely recognise that to survive it will need to appeal to a lot of people (AU can get away with putting the likes of Bright Eyes, LCD Soundsystem and Hot Chip on covers because they receive lottery funding from the arts council). I also agree that the rating system on the reviews could be clearer, and that, over all, it could do with an injection of humour.
Saying all that though, I really enjoyed it and really hope it sticks around. Fair play to everyone involved; putting out any sort of publication can feel a bit like giving birth to a baby. And a baby that needs to be fed, watered and sub-edited at that. I hope the proud parents are in some dark, quiet corner have a big ol’ drink.
Looking forward to the next issue already.