Being familiar with Wrekk’s other publications, as well as being a big fan of Stolen Sharpie Revolution, I was excited to see that Brainscan had made its way into my review pile. This issue is all about what went on during July 2002. Wrekk wanted to write about July, August, and September of that year, but as she explains in her introduction “I wouldn’t be able to get that done to my satisfaction in time for the Urban Hermitt book tour that I am tagging along on in January.” This girl is busy and seems to just be bursting with creative energy. Not only is she an active organizing member of the Portland Zine Symposium, Wrekk also finds the time to teach kids about zines, write zines, put on shows, attend shows, play host to all sorts of zine types that stagger into Portland, and, she even has the time to fall in love and get married. I’m exhausted just reading about it– imagines how she feels! What I like most about Brainscan is its easygoing conversational tone. This is fitting since much of the zine revolves around the importance of conversation within the zine community. “Zine kids are so funny.” writes Wrekk, “We can be content to photocopy our souls and send them out to strangers– but when we are faced with actual face to face conversation we can become quiet and shy.” I’m sure a lot of you zinesters out there can see some truth in that. I know I can. Wrekk lets us in on some of the conversations she’s had with members of the seemingly endless stream of zinesters that crash in her living room, staying up at all hours of the night drinking beer and talking about what it means to be part of the zine community. Wrekk brings up some interesting points about the way in which zinesters present themselves in their zines and how they are in real life. This is a complex and fascinating topic and Wrekk deals with it beautifully when she writes: “I’m not afraid of anyone reading stuff I have written. I am more afraid of them taking me too seriously. I am more than the sum of my zines.” This is a great issue. Keep an eye out for more, I’m sure this girl is not about ready to stop anytime soon. (Audrey Gagnon)

perzine, #19, 63 pages, Alex Wrekk, PO BOX 14332, Portland OR, USA 97293

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