There are four main categories of names for magazines, these include:
Acronym: This is an abbreviation formed by the initial letters of words and are
pronounced as one word. Music magazines names which include acronyms are:
Phrase: This is a sequence of words put together to add meaning. Music magazines
which involve phrases in their name involve the following:
Top of the pops
Drowned in Sound
Connotative: This is a word which suggests something further than what is already
being explained. For example, the following below are all connotative names:
Compound: This is a selection of words put together to form a complete word. Music
magazines which involve a compound in their name are:
The acronym ‘NME’ stands for New Musical Express. The short, simple and catchy
name has been shortened to make the magazine more memorable to the audience.
The acronym is also targeted at readers who may be un-familiar with the magazine as
the simplicity of the name leads them to easily guess the main genre of the magazine
– music. This is followed by the phrase ‘New Musical Express’ which is displayed under
The graphology of the masthead ‘NME’ is very bright and colourful portraying red to be
the main colour followed by a white outline and black background. The colour red is
signified to be a very powerful and dangerous colour emphasising the importance of
NME magazine. The use of the white border fixes the letters together and ensures
they're all equally the same height, this gives the magazine a professional feel and
explains to the reader that this magazine is very formal and well organised.
Furthermore, the border is used to catch the readers attention as the contrast in dark
and light colours makes the writing stand out. Readers would feel more obliged to buy
a brightly coloured and well designed magazine rather than a dull and monochrome
magazine if they were looking at a selection of music magazines.
Originally, the acronym ‘Q’ was going to be named ‘Cue’ followed by the phrase
‘cue the music’ to represent the idea of cueing a record . However, it was later
changed to Q due to the possible confusion with it being a snooker magazine. The
single letter title is effective as it would be prominent and identifiable to consumers
looking at a range of magazines on a newsstand. The fact that the magazine’s title is
revolved around a one letter word coveys simplicity and maturity suggesting an older
target audience of men in their late 30’s and 40’s.
The graphology of the masthead is very apparent and easily recognisable to
consumers through the permanent positioning of the logo in the top left hand corner of
the magazine. The colour scheme of the masthead is very bright and bold signifying
red to be the main dominant colour. The use of the colour red connotes feelings of
danger and purity suggesting the contents of the magazine to contain a variation of
genres and artists. The colours used are very important as they as are applied to every
edition created by Q. This adds to the professionalism and sophistication of the
magazine, separating it from other magazine competitors. Moreover, the flick of the Q
reinforces this illusion of professionalism as Q magazine is typically depicted by the
older target audience to be very formal, classy and elegant.
The phrase ‘RollingStone’ provides us with the feeling that this magazine has been
round for a very a long time conveying the magazine to be very successful. We gather
this indication through the use of the noun ‘stone’ presented at the end of
‘RollingStone’. The noun follows typical connotations of prehistoric times as well being
the hard solid non-metallic mineral which rock is made as a building material. This
foreshadows the content of the magazine and explains to the audience that they
magazine will involve modern as well as old artists. Furthermore, the title of the
magazine perhaps refers to the famous rock band ‘The Rolling Stones’ and encourages
fans of the rock band to buy their magazine.
Alike NME and Q magazine, RollingStone has included the colour red in the magazines
house style. The colour is significant as it directs the audience, red is stereotypically
portrayed to be a man and women’s colour indicating the audience to be mixed
gender. In addition, the colour red suits the theme of the magazine – rock. The use of
the black shadow behind makes the title of the magazine stand out amongst the front
page and denotes it’s importance as without this feature the red font would look bleak
and uninviting. The effect of the glint of shine over the letters implies the magazine to
be of ‘star quality’.
The phrase 'Top of the Pops’ has been purposely created to suit the genre of this
magazine – pop. This is useful for readers who are unfamiliar with this magazine as they
can easily identify the genre through the title itself. The title also involves the noun ‘top’
which symbolizes the magazines superior as it sits upon the platform of pop magazines.
The use of rhythm signifies the young target audience as young teenage girl would find
this more attractive and appealing to read.
The graphology of the title is presented in an extremely girly, and bubbly font to
reinforce the young teenage girl target audience. The white font against the vivid blue
background makes the title stand out and creates the effect that the white text has
almost be carved in to the blue background. This is not perceived to be the usual house
style of Top of the Pops magazine as in other editions they include the colour pink in
their masthead, this again contributes to the unprofessionalism of the magazine. The use
of swirls and stars reflect the audience of Tops of the Pops and makes the magazine
more interesting and exciting to read. This type of magazine would be unsuitable for
readers of NME and Q magazine as the masthead is portrayed to be unprofessional and
childish, however this style of layout is ideal for young teenage girls as this would grab
their attention and influence them to buy the magazine.
The connotative word ‘Kerrang!’ is an onomatopoeic sound which has been created for
effect. The phonology of the title projects feeling of a power chord on a distorted
electric guitar and the crashing sound of a symbol suggesting the magazine to be new
and individual. The use of this dramatic onomatopoeia demonstrates the genre of this
particular magazine which is rock. Furthermore, the fact the word ‘Kerrang!’ is non
existent makes the magazine more recognisable and labels the word to be from this
The graphology of the font has been specifically designed to give a ‘cracked’ effect
which links to the onomatopoeia sound of something crashing and being destroyed
created by the title ‘Kerrang!’. This also reinforces the genre of music the magazine
associates with which is rock. The two colours presented in the masthead black and
white contrast against each other as black has connotations of death, power and evil
while white signifies light, purity and peace. The contradiction in colours may imply that
the magazine involves dark, heavy metal rock as well as calm and perhaps older artists.
The exclamation at the end of the title promotes screaming and shouting reflecting
themes of violence as well as establishing the prime audience the magazine is targeted
at – heavy rock lovers.
The compound title ‘mixmag’ informs the reader that the magazine involves a
variation/selection of different artists and information to appeal to a wider target
audience. The alliteration of the letter ‘m’ makes the masthead more noticeable and
gives the effective that the magazine is related to music as the noun music also begins
with the same letter. The colloquial language of the phrase ‘mag’ suggests the target
audience to be teenagers as they are typically stereotyped to use forms of colloquial
language in their everyday dialect. Therefore, teenagers would understand the
meaning of the shortened phrase ‘mag’ unlike older people who would find this type
of language perhaps offensive and in-proper.
The graphology of the font is portrayed to be quite trendy and modern foreshadowing
the target audience of teenagers and young adults. The masthead is presented to be
quite bland and simple through the use of one colour – black suggesting the magazine
to be straight-forward and easy to read. This suits the target audience for ‘mixmag’ as
young people are often very active and would therefore not have the time or
patience to read through a complicated and heavy worded magazine. The detail of
the ‘I’ is different from the remaining of the text which adds diversity to the masthead.