The Spleen - Kerrang!

I feel I should include this bit. You may have noticed a few times over the course of the last few issues, little digs at Kerrang! Well, if you didn't, I did as I was writing them, and they must've gone way over the top of your head!

But anyway, I want to try and clear up a little why the digs are there. I think that the quality there has gone. Sometimes, they feature the same bands too much. I know I do, but that's partly because, as inexplicable as it seems to me, they still need support. They're not big stars yet. But anyway, Kerrang! concentrates on those bands it seems to me, at the expense of finding, informing and promoting young up and coming bands. Which is part of what it should be doing. And the thing is, they know people will still buy it, as it's the only weekly source of information on 'rock' music (whatever that is) in the UK.

It's all very well having the occasional Kerrang! approved tour, but the whole attitude strikes of the magazine getting behind bands already with label deals, and whose record company supplies them with everything. And besides, when they claim the credit for one of the tours, when the reality is that it's more to do with others is more than a bit rich. To me it should be about them telling us more. Going out and finding, and then informing us. As a national weekly publication, it's almost their duty. Instead it seems they just wait in their offices until the NEXT BIG THING turns up. Such as Cold. Maybe that's not the case, but it's how it comes across. Of course it goes both ways, I don't like Cold so I complain, I love Human Waste Project, so I'm pleased with the support they get, though acknowledging there's actually 4 people in the band would be nice. But I'm producing this zine, so I have a right to whinge. Besides, it's rule 4 in the contract.

I mean, in recent months, we've had reprints of BIG NAME INERVIEWS. 100 biggest nutters. 100 sexiest, scariest stars. 100 top albums. 100 guitarists that ROCK. What next, 100 adults that fuck. That just smacks of filling space. Talk about appealing to the lowest common denominator. And in all that time, they've not done major features on many of the up and coming UK bands that have deals. You know the ones I go on about. And they don't fill the space either saying, “wow, we got a really cool demo, they're called X and you should go and listen”. What are they actually doing. Nothing. Sit on laurels and just shove trend based tabloid style guff at us. Does it take a trip to New York and an 8 page feature to tell us a band smokes a lot of dope. I don't think so, but, well, I MAYBE wrong!

So basically, while Kerrang! continues to ignore the real roots of music in this country (and abroad), and instead pads itself out with utter shite and nonsense, then digs will appear in here. They have the capacity to help bands, to reach sheer numbers of people that I, and pretty much any zine can't do. That to some may be a part of the reason for the existence of zines, it certainly was a major motivation for me starting this one. But it's also them failing in what they should be doing. Kerrang! and all the major press should help the scenes, don't just be another cog in the machine which spoon feeds what the labels want us to hear. The last few weeks has seen them start to do something, but at the moment, it's the too little too late syndrome. All I ask is that they support and report in the way that they like to think they do.

Anyway, it's my justification for the digs.