RRP: £25

Our Price: £15

The City Is Ablaze! reads like a musical history of the late eighties and early nineties, a history that could only be obtained by surfing the sliproads, sneaking backstage at a thousand shows, sleeping on strangers’ floors and living to type up the tales of the sounds that defined an era.

“It’s a cacophony of voices. It’s the most moving music-related thing I’ve read since Kristin Hersh’s memoir…” Scott Creney, Collapse Board

Ablaze! fanzine was published in Manchester and Leeds in the late eighties and early nineties, and the best bits of this notorious and outspokenly passionate zine are now available in book format.

You’ll be able to read original interviews with the following bands:

Sonic Youth • Dinosaur Jr • The Pixies • Throwing Muses • Babes in Toyland • American Music Club • Hole • Pavement • My Bloody Valentine • Shudder To Think • The Wedding Present • fIREHOSE • Band of Susans • Henry Rollins • Live Skull • The Sundays • Thrilled Skinny • Rapeman • UT •The Sun and The Moon • The Breeders • Happy Flowers • Eyeless In Gaza • The Membranes • The Stone Roses • The Inca Babies • Tools You Can Trust • The Bodines • Inspiral Carpets • The Pastels • The Janitors • Happy Mondays • King of the Slums • Dustdevils • The Shamen • Cud • Dog Faced Hermans • Edsel Auctioneer • Mudhoney • AC Temple • Kilgore Trout • Silverfish • The Keatons • The Stretchheads • Pregnant Neck • Mayomberos Alive • Fluff • Archbishop Kebab • Nirvana • Pale Saints • Mercury Rev • The Heart Throbs • Leatherface • Nation of Ulysses • Tsunami • Poster Children • Huggy Bear • Sugar • Moonshake • Hood • Polvo

I forgive and hope for Karren A

Thurston Moore

There are other people to condemn, Karren – aren’t there?


Fuck off!

Ian Brown

“It’s a cacophony of voices. It’s the most moving music-related thing I’ve read since Kristin Hersh’s memoir a couple of years ago. In its dreaming, its manifestos, its desire to change the world, it reminds me of those old Situationist journals more than anything else. You can even argue that Riot Grrrl was their May ’68, a brief fleeting moment when the revolution they’d hoped for seemed inevitable.” – Scott Creney, Collapse Board

“Karren Ablaze! was a publishing renegade: in an era when music mags are slaves to the record labels’ latest folly, it’s easy to see Ablaze! as something of a thoughtleader… [The book is] more than just a good read or a smirk-invoking trip down memory lane… it also makes us proud, excited and hopeful again about the future for girls in music and the music business.” – Ngaire Ruth, The Girls Are

“Not only a valuable document of the underground media of its period, but a sharp reminder of the ideology of the underground.” – John Robb, Louder Than War

Alongside hundreds of zine pages, The City Is Ablaze! features new writings by Karren and other members of the Ablaze! team, as well as interviews with fanzine writers John Robb (Rox), Dave Haslam (Debris) and Richard Johnson (Grim Humour), essays by DIY cultural commentators Lucy Cage and Deborah Withers, a re-examination of the Riot Grrrl movement by those who were part of it, and an epilogue by Gary Jarman.

This 320-page A4 book also covers other zines that Karren produced in Manchester and Leeds between 1984 and 1994, capturing an era where DIY was de rigueur and indie actually meant something.

The book also includes irate letters from Morrissey and Thurston Moore.