As we open our digital archives for a limited time only, read some of the best stories from the past 25 years – featuring Björk, Marilyn Manson, Iggy Pop and more
To mark our 25th anniversary, over the next two weeks we're opening up the pages of Dazed to bring you a curated edit of the best of our archive, from 1991 to 2016.
The last two-and-a-half decades of Dazed history doesn’t just exist in the stacks of magazines filling shelves in our office basement – it’s also online, accessible to subscribers across the globe. Well, not just subscribers – for the next two weeks, we’re teaming up with ExactEditions to give you a peek inside the pages of the past, making some of our favourite features available to read for everyone. From Jefferson Hack’s first ever interview with long-term collaborator Björk in 1994, to 2000’s interview with Eminem that saw him hitting a bong on the cover – here are ten recommended reads that celebrate the cover stars, creative talents and individuals who have made Dazed what it is.
1994’s “No Turning Back” issue introduced long-term collaborator Björk to Dazed's readership for the first time, but as the feature’s title stated, she needed no introduction. Interviewed by co-founder Jefferson Hack, he paid tribute to the Icelandic musician in his editor‘s letter, writing that “Björk epitomises (the issue’s) attitude of self-conviction and as a star who remains unaffected by the pressures associated with her celebrity status... she is unique”. Having just released Debut at the time, the head-to-head between the two discusses the importance of making music for yourself, the dangers of being overexposed, and Björk’s own visual style. Click here to read.
Dazed & Confused’s 1994 “Special Future” issue included an A-Z guide to where humanity might be headed, featuring 25 predictions for an unspecified year ahead. Not quite a full alphabet – for some reason the letter ‘E’ is replaced with an additional ‘G’, the letter ‘K’ with an additional ‘H’, and the letter ‘O’ is absent completely – future predictions include cryogenics as “the ultimate life insurance policy”, and phone bills that would allow anyone “who has already started surfing the net” to pay a one-off fee of £500 to download things like films and TV shows to their computer. Meanwhile, Xmas was predicted to remain a fixture on the cultural calendar and movies were forecast to be available “on demand”, while email mailboxes were predicted to introduce a junk folder feature. Click here to read.
“Trainspotting will be a classic cult film the day it’s released: a visual and cultural reference point for anyone wishing to investigate the true nature of Britain from the 1980s through to the mid-90s.” So read the opening line of Issue 17’s Trainspotting feature written by British journalist and former ABC band member Fiona Russell Powell, who admits to being in her first month off heroin in the first sentence. The nine-page portfolio on Trainspotting saw Russell Powell speak to author Irvine Welsh about writing the book and his personal drug use, the film’s director Danny Boyle about reaching cult status, and Ewan Bremner about his experience playing Spud. Click here to read.
This head-to-head feature sees Irvine Welsh return to interview his childhood idol Iggy Pop, starting the conversation with “Whoa, Iggy ya cunt, how’s it gaun?!”. Naturally, they hit it off – so much so that their conversation in a Mexican restaurant on 14th Street in New York accumulated to hours of tape. In Welsh’s highly edited conversation, the pair discuss everything from the commercial rock‘n’roll played in Las Vegas casinos and the gruelling process of touring and spending life on the road, to Pop’s fear of Aids and his previous drug use. This dialogue was a key experiment in bringing strong personalities together for unexpected two-way conversations. Click here to read.
November 1997’s issue of Dazed & Confused featured a head to head between young writer and filmmaker Harmony Korine and German director and author Werner Herzog, in which the pair discuss Korine’s debut film Gummo that had been released that month. Having created the film at the age of just 23, acclaimed directors Lars Von Trier, Gus Van Sant, Larry Clark and Herzog himself were all surprised by the quality of Korine’s work, with the director himself calling his tender portrayal of teenage surrealism in a mid-American town a total “genrefuck”. Meanwhile, Herzog told Korine that he liked the “basic, physical curiosity” of his camera and his ability to follow his vision at such a young age. Click here to read.
August 1998’s issue saw PJ Harvey feature on a cover shot by co-founder Rankin ahead of the release of her then-new album Is This Desire? which the interviewer Bidisha wrote would be “a classic of the next 10 if not 20 years”. The feature discusses Harvey’s early beginnings as an actress, her creative process, and finding happiness with her appearance – after tortured teen years where, as she told us, “I always felt ugly. I spent a lot of the time feeling like the back of a bus.” Click here to read.
“Nobody does teen sensations better than US MTV culture. And nobody does sweet-assed junior R&B better than Destiny’s Child,” reads the introduction to July 1999’s feature on the then-rising girl band. In the interview that discusses how the Texan quartet were named after a phrase that slipped from a book in Beyoncé’s mother’s Bible, the writer Rachel Newson (who states that Béyonce “rhymes with fiancé”), also writes that the singer in question is “exercising the voice that one day not very far off is destined to become unforgettable.” Click here to read.
Dazed’s debut cover feature on the enigma that is Marilyn Manson was a ten-page world exclusive that cast a lens on his musical career, following the release of his third album that coincided with the US elections. Questioning what’s more terrifying – Manson, or the establishment he’s set himself up against – the interview covers everything from his supernatural reputation in a puritan country, the Columbine scapegoating and America’s potential to be a breeding ground for mass murderers and serial killers, to his use of mind-altering substances, his alientation from the world and his affection for prosthetic limbs. Click here to read.
Photographed smoking a bong on the cover, Eminem, aka Marshall Mathers, speaks of his devil-sympathising, misanthropic alter-ego Slim Shady in his June 2000 feature. “I was taking a lot of pills, you know, trying to keep myself up. I was just depressed. If anything, I think it was a cry for attention or some shit,” says Mathers in the interview that goes on to discuss a cross-examination of his appearance in a gay publication, his true-to-life lyrics that see him spit words about his mother – that later caused Debbie Mathers Briggs to open a lawsuit against her son for alleged character defamation – and the girlfriend-killing fantasies that feature on his 2013 album The Marshall Mathers LP. Click here to read.
The cover story of the November 2008 issue of Dazed & Confused is a 12-page feature entitled “The Devil In Miss Jones”. Shot by Chris Cunningham, the images see Grace Jones naked entangled in metal wire, crouched in a foetal position, and with her bare body pressed up against a glass surface – a stark contrast to the epic production seen in her work with Jean Paul Goude, Keith Haring and Andy Warhol. Renowned for her career spent tearing up the rulebook, the feature – that saw former Dazed editor-in-chief Tim Noakes dissect Jones’ famed musical career and her wild public persona – followed the release of her first album release in nearly two decades, Hurricane. Click here to read.