Reel big fish

The first music I ever owned was a C90 tape with Ray Parker Jnr’s Ghostbusters and Thriller by Micheal Jackson on—I was a little obsessed with ghosts and monsters at the time. My mom picked up an old Walkman from a jumble sale and I listened to them over and over, each time listening to the whole tape just in case there was something else on there. There never was.

Bristow is many things and exists for reasons other than the vanity of its editors. One of them is exploring a format that while will still survive but has probably seen its seen its glory days as important cultural artifact. One of the funny side effects that the internet has is that it brings together creative types who pick up the old tech that its replaces and allows them to look at it afresh wander ‘what can we use this for?’. Hopefully somebody will do this for the cassette tape: we’re having a bash.

The durable tape was a small robust object that played everywhere, as opposed to the flat delicate record. Where every record was valued, dusted and its notes poured over, a cassette was almost disposable function and ubiquitous but by being so endlessly customisable. If you really tired even of a pre-recorded tape you could always fill up the holes on top and press Play and Record.

The cassette tape took some of the power back from the record companies. It was the first pirate tech where you could share your favourite songs, make mix tapes and not only own the music but take ownership of it. The quality tended to be a bit hit and miss but, hey, it was coming out of two tiny speakers encased in bright orange cushions while you walked down a busy high street. Of course after this came the the compact disc, a once again delicate, flat, unlock-able platform – unless of course you transferred it to tape.

Now the humble tape we’ve attached to the front of our magazine isn’t exactly re-inventing the wheel. It’s more of a homage to the magazines we bought as a kid. But we hope by making some take out their old Walkmans, car stereos or the old clock radio we will spark someone to look again at a the humble tape, a format that shaped our musical tastes, got us through long car journeys with our siblings and sound-tracked our teenage lives.

There are 250 copies thats come with this plastic piece of ultra-short term nostalgia, which features four new and exclusive cover versions on the theme of Beast by Birmingham’s most willing musical acts.

You can go and buy Dirty Bristow Issue Two — Beast here.

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Dirty Bristow Issue Two Launch *Note Date Change*

The Bristow-lympics Opening Ceremony

It’s been a time coming, but Dirty Bristow Issue Two is ready for your prying eyes and the best and first way to get one is to wave your nation’s flag at the Bristow-lympics Opening Ceremony. And getting a ticket isn’t a lottery.

At The Edge, Cheapside, DigbethSat 13th August.

Tickets Only £6

Which Includes A Copy Of Dirty Bristow Magazine Issue Two (go find out all about it, including free stuff).

Every penny raised goes towards printing and other costs of this most individual, independent and inspiring of magazines—it’s the only way we can keep it up.

Buy a ticket (and pick up a mag on the day)


*Tickets appear in the shopping cart in the sidebar. You’ll get a PayPal receipt email, please bring that on the night as your ticket.

If you can’t make it, you can buy a copy to be despatched for launch day here.

Music From:

The High Commissioners

Thee Moths

Caroline Beavon (Kerrang! / Q Radio) * 8-Bit Pete

An Inspiring Olympic Anthem from MoxyPark

Comedy From:
Tom Lennon, Harry Vale and Matt Ritchie

Sports: Rhythmic Gymnastics *Football * Dressage * Raffle * Welly Wanging


Healthy Eating at:


Sponsored Concession stands

Here’s a PDF of the poster to download, print out on your work’s time and stick up somewhere: that there PDF.



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Issue Two — Beast

Dirty Bristow Summer Fete -42

beast (noun)

/biːst/ n [C]

formal an animal, especially a large or wild one

a wild beast

The room wasn’t fit for man or beast.

old-fashioned an unpleasant, annoying or cruel person

He was a beast to her throughout their marriage.

“He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man.”

* Samuel Johnson Quoted in “Anecdotes of the Revd. Percival Stockdale” (1809)

With the first issue successfully launched and issues flying off our metaphorical shelves here at the fictional Bristow Compound, rumours are already brewing about the other events we have planned for the next few of months to supplement issue one.

But what of Issue two? At our summer fête we revealed the theme of the next issue to be ‘Beast’ and are now looking contributions.

Go see more details or get in touch

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