The Indie Magazines Worthy Of Your Coffee Table
There’s an independent magazine boom going on. As traditional and web-based media platforms chase your clicks, a host of fresh and fascinating publications are taking a slower and more measured approach – offering compelling long-form storytelling, out-of-the-box design and niche content topics.
Whether you’re perusing the shelves of your local independent newsagent or subscribing via an online service like Stack, here’s a few recommendations to keep an eye out for. Find a chair, unplug for a few hours and lap up those glossy pages.
Whilst many traditional business titles still don’t understand (or speak to) the young whippersnappers next door working in the open-plan office drinking flat whites and coding themselves into six figures, Courier gets it. Originally set up as a magazine looking at startup culture in London, Courier has proceeded to cement itself as a must-read title for any modern professional. Aimed primarily at a generation of people who are interested in business but aren’t acquainted with the Financial Times, this is a magazine that gets to the root of contemporary working culture.
There’s so many great ideas and concepts within the indie mag sphere that most traditional titles wouldn’t even dare to try out. Fare is one of the best. With each bi-annual issue concentrating on a particular city, even if you have no interest or intention of visiting said town, Fare’s emphasis on local knowledge, experience and way of viewing a city through the intersection of food, history and community is fascinating.
Previous issues have covered Glasgow, Seoul and, surprisingly, Charleston. If you happen to be visiting a Fare spotlighted location, you should absolutely invest in a copy.
Sidetracked is one of those magazines that really ignites your imagination thanks to its immersive reading experience. Devoted to adventure, expedition and exploration, it’s the sort of glossy that’ll have you opening tabs for Skyscanner and Millets within seconds of the final few pages. Every stunning piece of photography makes you yearn for a taste of the great outdoors, whether it’s an alpine river or the side of a train set against infinite desert.
A truly enveloping magazine experience that’ll have you clad in Patagonia and North Face in no time.
Weapons of Reason
Another flex of the indie magazine sphere, allowing for truly fascinating but often dense topics to be explored in one place . The aim of Weapons of Reason is to explain complex world issues but in a simple, engaging and sincere way – minus an agenda. It’s hoped the issues will ultimately inspire action, even if that just means people being slightly more informed than they were previously. Our pick of recent issues is their sixth on AI, which in parts was nothing less than profound.
The California Sunday Magazine
The California Sunday Magazine offers high-quality, in-depth long-form storytelling on seemingly overlooked topics and subjects around the world. Some of our favourite-ever stories have been published in this mag, notably ones on Australian outback big tent boxing shows and arguably the best profile ever written on Thrasher icon Jake Thelps. It’s hard to get hold of in the UK, which makes securing a paper copy even sweeter.
There’s a bit of chicken and egg situation with Mundial – did Mundial have a hand in inspiring a new football culture or did a new football culture inspire Mundial? Whichever is true, the widely acclaimed quarterly has capitalised on everyone’s love of the beautiful game by capturing exactly what people love about it. Whilst the old-guard still insist on eight-page cover interviews with Ballon D’or nominees from a decade ago, Mundial mixes stories from all tiers of international football with a pinch of humour, fashion and intrigue.
At a time of increasing mental health awareness, Anxy is a welcome exploration of the issues we still seem to keep bottled up. Based upon a central theme such as anger or “workaholism”, each issue explores the topic through personal essays, interviews, visual stories and recommendations, offering an interesting exploration of emotions and mental health rather than a mere “fix” or science-heavy explanation. Issues sell out fast so if you see one about, cop it.
How well do you really know your favourite companies? Are you aware of their origins or the place they were formed? What about the people that work there or the stories that helped catapult the brand to where it is now? Each issue of Magazine B is dedicated to one iconic brand, providing an unprecedented deep dive into household names like Netflix, Google, Chanel, Porsche and Lego. One for the marketing and business heads, but even the slightly curious will find each issue highly informative.