Fanzines are a common ground amidst the lot who deals with extreme metal music and have devoted themselves to the underground. Besides, especially when access to information was limited and when the ‘magazines’ circulating were busy with strategically selected bands to promote, fanzines were (for the romantic as still are) an inexhaustible well of knowledge. They will bring you in touch with bands and people you do not know, give you a deeper look at bands and situations that you already knew, you will learn some obscure information that has been kept from you this far, but whatever the case is, fanzines are the best companions for those who have given themselves to extreme music. Such a release is “Cult Never Dies – The Mega – Zine”.
In the end of 2016, with a 268-page extend and regular book format, Mega-Zine hosts 14 cordially exclusive interviews, including Reverend Bizarre, Ancient, Bal Sagoth and In The Woods, among others. It is the fourth release of Cult Never Dies and obviously the main concern was the modern rendition of interviews with the old school fanzine style of the past.
With a simple browse, you will understand that this is a very passionate release that came out with a lot of effort and a lot of emotion simultaneously. Judging just from the multitude of questions that each interviewer answers, one understands that this fanzine is not only the result of concentrated and passionate work, but there is an apparently widespread need, as we might say, of passing stories and information to the general public that had never seen the sunlight before.
I found the preludes before each interview o f significant importance. In most of the fanzines I have either in my collection or have fallen every now and then in my hands, before each critique / presentation / interview there was little information given by each author. Many times it didn’t even exist. In this case, Dayal Patterson has added several paragraphs before going to the main dish. Beyond the fact that each prologue tells you what it is to follow, with the personal stories Dayal shares with you (how he first came into contact with the band, how learned about them, what it felt like when listening to ‘that’ record) transforms your reading into a more direct and intimate one and makes you feel one with what you’re reading.
Besides, if you really sit down and break off every interview you will find diamonds. Not because each interviewee had nothing else to do to keep the interest high, but because all the questions that are being asked betray a particular pre-existing friction and affection towards the bands, so the questions are extremely crucial and promise a juicy answer that. Many times I felt like becoming one with the interview, as at several times i imagined the next question before I actually read it. There’s nothing better than the mental and sense sequence when it comes to presenting the band being examined each time from a different point of perspective.
In the practical issues of the release, the cover and the back cover are a creation of Dayal Patterson, who did the interviews and wrote the intermediate chapters. Most interviews took place in 2015 and 2016, except for those of Indesinence and Lychgate, made by Frank Allain in 2016.
Though dense and monotonous – meaning that no reviews or articles intervened in the main body of the book – Megazine offered me a very enjoyable experience and was my companion even on trips. It goes without saying that it will surely be appreciated by the devotees of the dark music that breathe in order to indulge in these musical alleys. A great addition to each collector’s library, a project to stay in time and to be thumbed through by the next generation of music lovers as it is full of credibility and written with true passion and true love for the music itself and its countless extreme metal adherents from all over the world.