Punk Rock Purity

In one issue, Yohannan criticized Bikini Kill for agreeing to play a concert with the Go-Go’s, because the concert was sponsored by Budweiser. Others wondered about musical boundaries: if MRR was a punk zine, did that mean it only covered bands that sounded, more or less, like the Ramones? In October 1992, Yohannan announced that the zine would no longer review records that were “more on the metal side of life, or the hard rock side of life, or the folk side of life,” even if they came from established independent labels. One of the columnists, Kent McClard, objected to the magazine’s eagerness to draw boundaries, suggesting that “politics and honesty” should be more important than musical categorization. McClard left soon after to found a new zine, HeartattaCk, which was devoted to the proposition that “hardcore is a state of mind, not a musical style,” and which therefore promised to write about “all records and CDs that are sent in for review regardless of musical style,” as long as they did not have universal product codes. (“The U.P.C. code is big business,” McClard explained.)

Major Labels: A History of Popular Music in Seven Genres
Kelefa Sanneh