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Psychic Violence: Issue #1

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Three pages into the debut issue of Psychic Violence, the main thought -- especially after reading the "Reasons to Kill Yourself" spread -- is this: "Whoa. This person sure is emo."

But like the late Sun Ra once said, "You can't have a white house without a black house," and zine creator Keegan Crawford provides the light to his previously stated dark with a "Reasons Not to Kill Yourself" list. (According to Crawford, you should because of friends, love, music, et cetera, and you shouldn't because of friends, love, music, et cetera.)

This unexpected turn ultimately defines this inaugural publication that includes written and drawn contributions by seven folks, including Sam Mauric, Lauren McKay, and Myriah Castillo.

Short poems and concise essays are printed over images of stencils and ads for mainstream grocery store products. The most creative example of this is "Untitled" by Rachel Schermann, who chronicles the process of crossing over to the afterlife on a facsimiled copy of a Georgia death certificate. Schermann's placement of text in the choice fields is reminiscent of a mad lib, sans the parts of speech necessities.

Other highlights of the publication include a hand-scrawled grocery list that's deciphered from gobblygook and the "Wonder No-Man" pen drawing. Overall, the zine is clean, well written, and readable, even though it tends to lean towards the extreme melodrama in each direction.

For a first issue, Psychic Violence kills while living large.

Number of Pages, Including Front and Back Covers: 30

Cost: Free

Spots to Pick Up: The zine was snatched from Tempe's Eastside Records before it closed at year's end. For information on where to score a copy, e-mail Crawford at keeganc136@yahoo.com.

Representative Sentence: "We are all the same."

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