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Spinemagazine

Spinemagazine was the first project I co-founded whilst working at U-DOX (formerly Unorthodox Styles: a London-based creative agency that I set up with Russ Williamson and Chris Law in 1999).

I began writing music reviews and conducting interviews many years ago for a number of print publications, and when I started using the Internet, it was an easy decision to make the transition from print to web. From very humble beginnings in 1999, Spinemagazine.com grew into a huge database of reviews and features and went from 10,000 monthly visits to several hundred-thousand weekly views in under four years. The original plan was for Spinemagazine to act as a portfolio piece for us while we set up Unorthodox Styles as a full-discipline creative agency, but it quickly developed into a fully-fledged project in its own right.

During the time that the website was live, I wrote over 500 articles and reviews – and designed over a hundred editorial pieces. Spinemagazine gave birth to Crooked Tongues and brought in clients such as MTV and Nickelodeon to the creative agency. I personally met and interviewed many influential people and artists, such as Futura 2000, Kaws, DJ Shadow, Lord Finesse, Alife, Michael Lau, Barry McGee, Reas, Espo, Cap, DJ Format, DJ Q-Bert, Edan, Stash, Invisible Man, DJ Yoda, and many others.

As well as acting editor on the site, I designed the original brand identity and style guides for both print and HTML. Chris Law took these elements and redesigned the website template in 2004, putting Spinemagazine at the forefront of web design. As our video content increased, that too spawned into a separate site: SpineTV.

Today, the site no longer exists (some of the content style has been absorbed into the U-DOX agency blog), but it remains as one of my favourite parts of my portfolio. A book project of all the content has been discussed for many years – perhaps it will actually happen one day!

Notable people who made the site as successful as it was are Russ Williamson, Kev Freel, Chris Law, Chris Heathcote, Gideon Cresswell, Toby Fletcher, Mike Olaye, A-Cyde, Zaid Mudhaffer and Gary Warnett.

Website: www.spinemagazine.com (1999-2010)

Spinemagazine: website
Spinemagazine: website (2004)

Spinemagazine: identity, paraphernalia and early promotional items
Spinemagazine: identity, paraphernalia and early promotional items

Spinemagazine: 'Visual' features
Spinemagazine: ‘Visual’ features

Spinemagazine: 'Music' features
Spinemagazine: ‘Music’ features

Spinemagazine: 'Music' features
Spinemagazine: ‘Music’ features

Spinemagazine: 'Cavemilk' tour video
Spinemagazine: ‘Cavemilk’ tour video