Issue One – Birth

Dirty Bristow Issue One.
Is packed with essays, stories, opinion pieces and artwork on the theme of ‘Birth’.

Get a copy now (Special Offer prices include p+p):

  • For those of you within the UK  £2.50
  • Europe £4.50
  • Worldwide £5.50

Or available from selected outlets including Nostalgia and Comics, We Are Birmingham, & Urban Coffee Company.

Cover by Pete Ashton

‘Little’ Chris Downing of Brumcast has produced a mixtape reacting to the contents. Go Listen.

Mr Underwood illustrated Phil Barber’s article by way of an exclusive track. Go Listen.

Mark Streadman re-designed the website in response to the issue and designed the headline generator.

Mat Atkins and Julia Gilbert edited copy and proofed the hell out of it.

Pete Ashton did the cover, and is selling prints.


Alex Hughes

is a freelance cartoonist, caricaturist and illustrator who says he lives in Birmingham, even though he actually lives in Bearwood. He’s been published in a whole bunch of places, so if you want to see more, have a look at:

Antonio Roberts

is a digital artist based in Birmingham. His work explores experimental ways of working with technology. His focus is in compression artifacts, circuit bending and glitch art. In January 2009 he formed the hackerspace, fizzPOP, which aims to explore technology and its creative uses. More can be read on his blog. He is currently helping to plan a zine festival in Birmingham to be held this Autumn.

Ben Neal

“Tongues like a brace of straws. Hands like claws, teeth like eggboxes. A soft mushroom textured grey skin. White-fat globules around mouths”

My BlogTwitter -

 My experimental metal band Meatfeast

Ben Waddington

is a Birmingham based Historian, with an interest in C18th typography, C19th industry, C20th architecture and C21st cycling.

Chris Downing

is the creator and curator of Brumcast, an internet based radio show and podcast featuring only DIY and independent music from Birmingham and the Midlands. Since early 2006 he has been subjected to some incredible sounds (and some terrible dross) in his mission to show the world what Birmingham and the Midlands has got in the way of fresh new music. He broadcasts live on Monday evenings 8-9pm on but you can find his regular rants about the 50 bus on Twitter @Brumcast and his podcast archive at:

Chris Hathaway

Web Weaver and Meister of the urban dark, sleazy motel, garage-band groove and general downtown detritus Chris Hathway received a BA in illustration in July of 1997. Since then he’s been making his living as a painter, illustrator and also a website designer.

When he’s not working Chris enjoys many kinds of noisy music and doesn’t normally talk in the third person.

Dan Davies

is former editor and director of Blowback Magazine and Arts Editor of Metro East Midlands. Most recently he’s been studying for an MA in Online Journalism at BCU. His online escapades can be tracked here, cycle related peddlings can be found at, other collected writing is here and if you want more crap take a peep at:

Danny Smith

is an aspiring decadent and drinker with a writing problem. All my friends have babies, jobs and mortgages, but I have lots of books and a skeleton marionette called Señor Carpenter, in your face happy successful people. I will write for pennies, I write on my own blog, occasionally, various other things, and am known on twitter as @probablydrunk. I currently live in your cupboard, watching, always watching…

David Waldock

is a software development manager for a national environmental consultancy. In his spare time, he recently graduated with an honours degree in life and health sciences, and is now studying for a masters in science and society with the Open University. He is qualified ambulance crew with St John Ambulance, for whom he also writes a blog and teaches safeguarding, mental health and health sciences. He lives at home with his partner and cat. He has what can only be described as an inordinate fondness for chocolate, and can be contacted on

Dirk Collins

was one of the most respected music writers of the late 20th century and sadly died earlier this year. He was well known as one of the first to identify the resurgence in British popular music in the early to mid nineties and was credited by some with coining the term ‘britpop’.

A soon to be released anthology of his work is entitled ‘Fucking Shed Seven Again’.

Gordon Eightball

Born in 1965 – a fanatical music fan since a very young age, occasionally the quiet one in various obscure bands throughout the Scottish indie scene in the 80’s, now happily dividing his time working on photography books and writing about obscure indie bands.

Harry Vale

didn’t do an awful lot with his life for the first 18 years of it, until he decided to join the ground-breaking ‘digipunk’ band, Miniluv. 6 years, one gig, & zero albums later, he decided it was probably time to move onto other things. Since then he has written and directed an award-winning short film, gone on an award-winning stand up comedy tour (okay, so it was self-awarded, and the tour was one gig in a pub in Cradley Heath, but it was ace) and is now writing columns for the critically acclaimed Dirty Bristow magazine and anyone else who asks. He enjoys tea. He doesn’t enjoying writing bios.

Jeff Stuka

38% Wasp, 94% Disco, 22% Pringles.
This man is not to be trusted. He may say things that appeal to you.  Ignore them. He’s a product of the 80’s and riddled with latent Tory intentions.  The right wing will come sneaking out of him when you least expect it. Like Gary Barlow.  Ooh that Gary Barlow’s lovely.  Such a nice boy.  I’ll vote for Mr Cameron now. Thank you Gary for making my mind up.  Or something. The mouthpiece of President Jeff Luthor.

Where recovered records are revived.

Jon Bounds

is a meme artist, flâneur, Marxist and hypocrite. He wrote his piece for the magazine some months ago and is no longer sure he means it. Want to find him online? is the best place to start.

Leonardo Morgado

I’m a man who would love to spend all his time writing,
but is hindered by the fact that it requires commitment & discipline.
Qualities that went missing from my body at the age of eight months, never to return. You can read my words on

Luke Brown

is from Fleetwood, Lancashire, and Balsall Heath, Birmingham. He works in publishing and lives the life of an eligible bachelor.

Mark Parfitt

year old scouser who`s main problem is that he daydreams too much, this makes it almost impossible for him to hit any deadline or finish any kind of….

Mark Murphy

Mark Murph or ‘Moif’ in some circles is a creative designer and musician who works under the moniker Surely? and plays in the six piece band Health & Efficiency. Other than a 3 year sojourn to lovely Bristol in the early 90’s he’s Birmingdon born and based to this day – he resides in the south west of the city and works from his home studio overlooking the parklands of Côte du Rhidge. &

Mark Steadman

aka Moxy is a developer, podcaster and writer of sorts. If he could, he would have a screen permanently fixed to his head, so he could consume things from the Interwebs at all times. He occasionally organises events to bring developers and ideas-people together, and he’s big in Japan. Moxy can be found blogging and podcasting at, or tweeting at

Mat Atkins

is Birmingham’s own Jesus. He lives and works in Manchester, suffering all the scorn of the North. He does this for you. It is his divine calling. A Magazine Editor byprofession, Matt is available for freelance writing and proofing. Would you deny Jesus a job?

Michael Grimes

does web stuff for a london-based charity, mainly from home in Birmingham. He has one cat, one nephew, two nieces and too many slugs. He hates slugs. He knows how to string a sentence together and occasionally does so at

Mike Cummins

Mike has been playing with computers since 1982. He even managed to get paid to do so. He can be contacted at

Pete Ashton

in this context, is a photographer who makes lenses out of vintage cameras and takes photos through them. In other contexts he is other things. Go visit for more of his work.

Phil Barber

is from Birmingham and is a twenty-something artist, director, writer, whatever. He has a masters degree in fine art that he feels he is owed something for and spends his time directing music videos, writing, making art and moaning on radio (Proportion of text taken up by work description is not proportionally representational of time spent in real life). He has a huge chip on his shoulder and directs much of his hate to TV couples on housing shows, smirking from the 1990s, convinced that they ‘deserve’ the 5 bed house they are about to move in to because they are from a decade where depressing mediocrity in all walks of your gray life made you comfortably rich. In his spare time Phil enjoys complaining and football.

Phil Davies

I grab a biro and my sketchbook and march into battle like a Zulu warrior. My podcast can be found at

Sam Underwood

Mr.Underwood is a musician, sound artist and instrument designer whose creative endeavours are split between his studio, his shed and live music venues across the country. As Glatze he has taken many a stage by storm, including a set at Supersonic 2009. As Mr.Underwood he has run events such as Theremin Day and has built instruments such as his midi-octopus, which will debut at the British Science Festival in September.

Shona McQuillan

is a self taught artist living in Birmingham. Born in Worcester some time between the Neolithic Period and the Falklands War, she spent her early years covered in crayon and paint. After school and college stripped from her the joy of creating artwork, she spent several years holed up on the South Coast doing nothing at all related to pencils, crayons or brushes. She returned to the Midlands in 1997 and it wasn’t until a self-initiated slap round the lughole in 2008 that she rediscovered drawing. Predominantly working in pencil, she focuses mainly on nature and the female form and she’s not done learning yet.

Si Smith

Leeds-based but Leicester-born, Si is a freelance illustrator and do-er of generally artistic stuff. He’s currently illustrating some things and documenting every bus trip he takes in 2010 with a lino print.
Si is married with two kids and a secret drawer-ful of 2B pencils.

Stuart Parker

The usual speil, creative out of need, process over result, no matter the medium. I revisited photography back in 2006 and joined Flickr. Serendipitously found the Way of Photoshop Kungfu, a mutated take on photoshop tennis where contestants hack and dismember digital images for the pleasure of a goading audience. Over a brutal twelve months, much chaos, love and paranoia ensued but out of this came some gob-smacking creativity. Why only one year? It was as much as most of us could take. Intense with a high burnout ratio. A few of us veterans are pondering a worldwide live version, but is the world ready?

Tom Lennon

is a writer, blogger and a stand-up comedy start-up who lives in Kings Norton with his partner Clare and their two children, Lily and Edie.  He regularly upchucks bite-sized chunks of brain-wrong on Twitter (@tomlennon1) and his blog can be found at  He hopes to represent Birmingham’s Irish community at the 2012 Olympic Games (albeit in a non-participatory capacity).