BBR Directory review of Cyber-Psychos AOD #6

(From The BBR Directory, review by Jim Steel)

This particular issue is subtitled the "Schizophrenia/Alternative Realities Issue", and, having not seen any other issues, I have no idea if #6 is typical or not. All I can say is that I hope so, for this is an impressive magazine. Sailing's choice of contents is pretty eclectic, but she has a genuine enthusiasm for all the subjects tackled.

There is a lot of music coverage. Most of the reviews are of independent releases and demos of industrial, punk, thrash and goth music (few were actually familiar to me, but those that were I heartily approve of), and the interviews with musicians from Sleep Chamber and Severed Heads succeed despite a minimal previous knowledge of their existence. Other interviews are with Hakim Bey (which instantly makes you realize that you've never seen another interview with him), Uncle River, Mark Amerika, Brian Hodge, and Adam Parfrey. Parfrey is a publisher who, amongst other things, has published an Ed Wood biography and Joseph Goebbel's novel. He claims only to publish work that he'd want to read, and has proved that this is a perfectly sound way to run a business.

There's plenty of fiction on top of this. Gary Lynn Morton has an "if this goes on" tale that's been spiced up with a dash of sex, and Brian Hodge contributes a story of an industrial band that compliments his interview nicely. David Kramer's "Lonesome Soul" is a remarkable serial killer story (and there are damned few of them around), while "Saddle Blues" concerns itself with a set of killer prosthetic arms, which is certainly unusual although Lorin Emery does stretch the reader's credulity too far. Edward J. McFadden's "Focal Point of Disaster" has disasters occurring on the same date through history but is, shall we say, unfocused. However, 2 of the most powerful stories of the year, both dealing with rape, smash into the reader, with one immediately following the other. They are not cozy revenge tales, nor are they camoflagued porn. What they are is brutal, believable horror. Michael Hemmingson's "Cyber Stalker" has a student being harrassed and stalked through electronic mail, and twists horribly at the end -- this story could very easily happen today. KK Ormond's "Sex, Lies, and Derelict Dicks" is more primitive, though equally plausible in its depiction of the destruction of a victim's personality.

Some magazine. And I haven't even mentioned the columns, comic strips, or articles.

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