'Head Full of Snakes' issue #2

· Thursday January 24, 2013

It's hard to tell what Head Full of Snakes is more obsessive about: motorcycles or printed matter. Editors Luke Wood and Stuart Geddes complain/consort about their temperamental Nortons (motors blowing smoke, problems with carbs and/or electrics) and the hard yards running their Risograph (four 16-hour days of printing, operational back pains, a statewide shortage on black ink) but their love of each comes through on every page.

We told you about issue #1 about a year ago and, since all 500 issues of that sold out lightning quick, we're giving you the heads up on issue #2. Plus the grease monkeys behind it are friends of ours (I even have an article herein on the late, great motorcycle artist Dave Bell).

Issue #2 swerves from personal recollections about road trips to profiles on rebuilds and interesting people (like artist Nicolai Sclater, who makes amazing customised jackets, helmets and more) and places (post-earthquake bike-friendly Christchurch bar Smash Palace), and the writing shifts gears from conversational - even crass - to reverent, or borderline academic. It also comes with a pull-out dartboard and sew-on patch (what else could you need?).

HFoS is definitely part of a burgeoning movement towards old-school bikes and motorcycle culture, alongside grown-up skaters like Max Schaaf and Erik Brunetti and other zines such as Show Class. Despite its clear interest in aestheticising / fetishising motorcycles, HFoS never gets too precious, and isn't afraid of getting its hands dirty. It's a fanzine that would look equally at home on the workbench of a grimy garage or the top tier of a beautiful bookshelf, and - like any great piece of machinery - it's meant to be enjoyed 'til it's well dogeared and pockmarked.