“ Magazine Type: Music - Urban / Published: Monthly „
RWD (Rewind) Magazine is a UK-based urban music magazine. Starting-up in mid-2003, it immerged at a significant time for this music scene as it was at this point when Grime began bubbling-under and taking with it all the fans of the 2-Step Garage and Rap prior to it. This magazine was seen to stand alongside Channel U (before being called 'AKA') as the platform for young, aspiring artists in this field and has grown with these acts to the point where many of the pioneers have became Pop chart regulars and even a commercial offshoot to Grime has come about. Since its days of first being all about the London-born underground, it has since re-designed itself to become much more of a general music-orientated lifestyle mag.
Physically, RWD stands apart in that its only pocket-size and so quite clearly doesn't want to be seen as any sort of a competitor with other similar entertainment monthlys. This also reflects the fact that it which to remain to be a platform to styles which are only really seeing localised exposure and wants to broaden this out. Although this may be the case, they also have to ensure that they highlight any big things relating to acts which are bound to be well-known to their audience and so often have features with US stars too.
Fans of the American music scenes tend to know when artists in genres that are close to them are in the UK. As an R&B and Hip Hop fan, you don't really need to be doing any research on which acts are promoting a project on our shores as they tend to be everywhere for around a week in all media you may follow. As this is the case, you'd expect interviews with all the big names in this magazine and that's exactly what you get. Speaking in regards to the July 2010 edition, Big Boi, Ciara and Drake are in there as they should and it reflects the fact that RWD Magazine always seems to stay up with who people are looking to find or should be highlighted as an album or tour may be upcoming. If you're aware of someone who perhaps you'd expect to be in there but isn't, then you're almost guaranteed that it's saved for the following edition in the month to come and so shows that they're always up-to-date in this respect. Obviously, as a UK-based magazine, they regularly run around the local scene and pick out key names for short interviews just to remind us of their presence. The Grime, UK Hip Hop, Dubstep, Drum & Bass and R&B scene are what are primarily covered here, but they're sure to broaden things out to closely-associated urban styles if they fit in.
On the whole, the magazine does extremely well in regards to the music side of things. They cover all the top names in addition to those who you may have heard of, but won't yet have had any real label backing and so are yet to create any sort of significant buzz for themselves. They highlight any new music videos and song leaks as well as a decent review section in which a dozen or so new albums get rated out of five with a brief analysis of each. This, the primary side to the monthly, is handled well as they seem to go over things thoroughly to ensure that people won't be left feeling as though something key was missing in a certain issue.
Aside from the music, the magazine also picks up on typical things such as latest platform games, gadgets and films, but I thought that one of the best non-music sections to it was the 'Style Guide'. There, each month they pick up on a specific fashion look and give both a male and female breakdown of what to shop for and where exactly you'll be able to find it. Although the 'Yellow Mellow' of the most recent one didn't appeal to me, they off a number of websites to clothing websites which you'll probably not have heard of before and so will broaden knowledge on that to a similar degree as how they cover all the other things which don't directly relate to the music. It isn't comprehensive, but it is a great starting point.
It's often the case the adverts throughout magazines are rather annoying and do nothing but fill it out and give it added length. I'd say that this isn't the case here and that it's actually really useful. Here the advertisements scattered throughout are quite refreshing in that all of them seem to be extremely relevant and are bound to be desirable to anyone picking this up. Most of these are for album releases or clothes, but I found that the extensive listings of upcoming, local music events to be very valuable and so they give readers more of a reason to want to pick it up. You won't be bombarded with lots of things which have little to do with the overall theme of the magazine, which is often the case, as they nearly all seem to be things that you'd want to be aware of.
Speaking generally on the magazine, it's glossy, top-quality and overall aesthetically-pleasing. I found it to be inviting and once you're in you'll be bound not to want the hundred-page issue to finish. I look forward to each one as I feel that although I may collect other magazines; this one seems to be the most relevant to me in terms of lifestyle and what exactly it presents monthly. I feel as though this is the case with many others and when you consider the cost of getting one (which I'll mention later) you wouldn't want to be without it.
All should be pleased to find out that the magazine is actually free. If you're unable to get your hands on it (I re-discovered it after a Yukka order came with a free edition), then they actually allow you to read it online on their website or will send it direct to your email inbox if you add yourself on to the mailing list. I feel that it's silly not to be kept up-to-date with this magazine as it really does offer a lot for something free and pocket-size. It doesn't quite cover anything and so clearly for actual news you'll have to be a lot more in-the-know and on the internet searching it out (perhaps on their website), however this does a good job as foundations to this.