FREE STATE #2: $?, 8½” x 11”, photocopied, 66 pgs.

Free State is one of the best zines documenting a local music scene I’ve had the pleasure of coming across. Focusing on the Maryland hardcore scene, this issue features an extended scene report of the Gaithersburg Punx. The report includes a bit-overlong roll call of individuals and their contributions, and a list of the most important bands and releases, written by one of their own. The zine also featured a number of interviews with bands and individuals from Maryland, including Pianos Become The Teeth, Praise, and Tony Pence of Celebrated Summer Records and the band Deep Sleep. Pence had a number of interesting things to say about his experiences of owning and working at an independent record store and about his experiences in the scene over the years, including behind the mic of a number of great bands. The quality of the interviews was very high, a credit to the writers who contributed. The layout had both a cut and paste feel and a more professional design look. I appreciated the mix. –Paul J. Comeau (Free State HQ, 837 W. 35th St., Baltimore, MD 21211)