Magazine comparison research


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Magazine comparison research

  1. 1. Example Covers
  2. 2. Cover Analysis Dark and gritty war-themed background gives off a big dark/evil feel to the whole page, as well as the skeleton figures of Iron Maiden. The tank is the main centerpiece here and draws most of the attention. Males are usually associated with being fans of the military and warfare. The nature of the image is quite gritty, masculine and absurd, which appeals to teenagers and young adult males. This is not a typical publication you would see in a woman’s or elderly themed literature section due to the dark nature of it. Large, red and dominating title adds to the overall doom factor of the cover, making it easily recognizable to fans and enticing others who may like the style. This issue is also a little older than other issues, and the bordered grey on the text gives it a stenciled military-esque appearance. Usage of military motifs that could be considered ‘cool’ or ‘badass’ entices young males. Most metal fans are going to know who Iron Maiden is, so by putting their name this big on the cover they will entice a lot of fans. The tagline above is also designed to draw more readers in by using big exaggerating words to describe their new album.
  3. 3. Comparing Covers Terrorizer & Metal Hammer Both magazines here follow a dark and drab colour palette as well as close-up photographs of the featured bands that dominate the cover. The colours used here represent this particular style of music which is known for being dark and aggressive compared to other genres. Both magazines feature a lineup of featured bands at the bottom of the page which are presented as sans serif and serif, reflecting each style of the feature band (Paradise Lost & Lacuna Coil both feature a more classy approach, yet Aura Noir is more extreme and distressed. Terrorizer opts for bright white and yellow sans serif text, that in a way can resemble a warning sign’s style-further attributing to metal fan’s aggressive characteristics.) As well as this, more bands are featured at the top that give a brief summary of the content to the passing eye on the magazine rack. Both magazines have a dark style reflected in the feature bands that is quite prominent in the appearance of the typical metal fan black t-shirts with logos, heavy chains, hoods, sunglasses, long, unkempt hair and facial hair. This could make potential buyers and members of the target audience feel connected with the magazine as it puts across styles and motifs that they can associate with. As well as this, both of them have small logos that note what the mag includes – a free CD or a 17 page long special – this can entice more buyers thanks to the freebies offered. CDs are particularly valued with music fans as they allow them to sample new music and find new bands to enjoy. Overall, both of these covers give off a gloomy, menacing vibe that fits in well with what most metal is defined by, and this is specifically tailored to draw in fans of metal, who are typically associated with such motifs.
  4. 4. Comparing Logos Terrorizer features a rougher, grittier logo that represents the more extreme music it covers as opposed to Metal Hammer’s general focus. Fans of the more extreme metal subgenres tend to be more into the crazier aspects of metal, such as dark, terrifying or horrifying themes, absurd styling and general themes that are mostly frowned upon in society. In contrast, Metal Hammer’s logo is more stylized and refined, appearing modern but at the same time influenced by what it covers, like the distressing used in the word ‘metal’ and the spikes and flicks at the bottom of the letters. This is quite reminiscent of Metallica’s logo, who are one of the most famous metal bands and as such, the more general fans who have heard of them will likely make this connection. Metal Hammer’s logo generally appears larger on the cover than Terrorizer because it covers much more, including many general areas of metal as opposed to the underground scene.
  5. 5. Gender & Age Simply by glancing at many of the metal magazine covers it is clear the males are the dominant genre due to metal’s largely male fan base and devotion. Although there a few females in bands, most bands are made up of only men so it is important the magazines such as Metal Hammer have appealed to them as the core demographic. Certain elements of this could be the gritty, ‘badass’ styling that fit well with the masculine nature of metal and its listeners. Males tend to be the gender that is more interested in darker elements of life, like weapons, warfare, doom and death aspects. As such, both magazines here have monotone colour palettes and lots of grim photography that paints the featured musicians as grim and haunting. Males shown in the magazine tend to have very dominating poses and photography that bring out masculine features such as muscles and tattoos. Females, while rarely shown in both of these magazines, are shown as more classy, lacking the unkempt hair and heavily tattooed bodies of the opposite sex. This shows that both genders are on equal footing in metal, just that female musicians are heavily outnumbered. As for age, both magazines are trying to appeal to a range that is in the late teens to late thirties, which is the prime audience for this style of music. To promote this, they both use large, stylized fonts with almost no sense of layout, giving it quite a wild feel that represents the generation it aims for. The main age, 20s-30s is shown as the most dominating age with lots of the bands and musicians looking moderately young and masculine while retaining their characteristics. Children and the elderly are rarely shown in both magazines, but elderly musicians are treated with a lot of respect and honor, such as members of older, legendary bands.
  6. 6. Page Spread Analysis The usage of the word ‘shredding’ to describe fast guitar playing is an example of the audience culture, as people who are not as into music will not recognize this term. An example of prior knowledge is the fact that this article does not mention why Herman Li was chosen. This is because his band, DragonForce is infamous for its crazy guitar solos, meaning most fans will understand why instantly. The layout here is formal yet at the same time informal with the usage of the logo on the first page, the columns and the highlighted red text. This reflects on the audience who are in the transition of informal (teens) and formal (adults) The words in red are used to highlight and break up parts of the text, making it easy to follow. The usage of cable jack and plectrum graphics gives this whole spread a scrapbook-esque appearance which ties in nicely with the gritty style of music the magazine covers. It also allows it to tie in with the article subject.