|NME Front Cover Analysis
I've chosen to use an NME cover to analyse as from my questionnaire I saw that it was the magazine which was most popular with my target audience. By analysing this magazine I will be able to spot the forms and conventions used and then incorporate them in to my own magazine design. It appears that this magazine targets readers who are interested in finding out about new and up-coming artists hitting the music scene.
From the front cover the reader can clearly see that the main article will be about a new band 'Paramore' as they have taken up the entire front cover with the image of the band and with the extremely large, bold font used for the main cover line which takes up the entire bottom half of the magazine. All the cover lines used on the magazine correspond to new or up and coming artists and how they are possibly the next best thing with the potential to over take already established and chart topping artists, "Mumford & Son's Bigger than Muse!" By listing a number of the bands which have features on the inside of the magazine the reader can clearly see the vast amount of articles on different artists this magazine has to offer.
This magazine is aimed at people aged between 16-21 year olds as the cover has quite a new and fresh feel about it being covered in splashes about new artists. The pink coloured text used for the band name "Paramore" reflects the fact that the bands lead singer is female which breaks the general trend that indie bands are generally all male; the use of pink font emphasises this break in the trend as it is a colour which not only relates to femininity but also completely clashes with the red in the general house style of the magazine. The language used on the cover is quite simple, with short snappy statements which give the reader the relevant information quickly which is the type of language we would expect to help engage the young teenage market. Also, by adding a question in the main cover line this directly engages the audience which is a convention we expect to be followed by magazines with target readership being the younger generation. From my initial impression of this magazine we expect the reader to have a keen interest in music not only because this is a music magazine but there are a number of different bands mentioned and also the statement, “Mumford & sons bigger than Muse!” for the audience to understand this statement they need to know who these bands are in the first place and therefore the reader would need an interest in music!
The band ‘Paramore’ are the featured artist on this magazine cover which is a young and attractive new band from America attempting to now break in to the UK as suggested by the cover line promoting its success in America, “4 million albums sold.” This is all written in block capitals so it stands out and grabs the readers’ attention and also the white colouring of the text helps it stand out against the dark clothing of the band in the main image creating a sense of urgency and excitement in the cover line. The Band are all dressed in black and have pale skin creating the illusion of a black and white image, however the lead singer is made stand out from the image by the colour of her hair and shade of her lipstick. I feel that the rest of the image has kept this black and white illusion so that the red hair and pink lipstick stick out dramatically and also draws further attention to the fact the front person of this band is in fact female. Hayley Williams, the lead vocalist of Paramore, is placed in front of the rest of her band members and in front of the NME logo where as her band members are behind the NME logo. NME is a well established music magazine so it doesn’t really matter that part of the mast head is covered as the reader will still be able to recognise the magazine from its house style. By Hayley Williams being placed in front of the mast head shows that Paramore are not yet a well established act and it therefore helps them jump out at the reader. Also, by emphasising the image of the lead vocalist suggests that this issue is trying to draw in a male audience based on the attractiveness of Hayley Williams’ image.
Along the left hand side of the cover are lures in a much smaller font to the main cover line. However the audience is still drawn to these by the buzz words introducing the rest of the cover line being written in a different style of font to the rest of the magazine text which helps draws the readers’ eye to these snappy statements and words, “Plus” and “America loves us!” The lure on the left, “The Manics finally conquer America” toes in with the main cover line as Paramore, an American act, are attempting to break in to the UK The Manics, a British act, have broken in to America. This emphasises that this magazine is all about new acts and this magazine helps promote them to their audience as well as having features on already established artists.
The title of this magazine NME stands for “New Music Express” which implies the target reader is a young person who wants information quickly delivered by an “express.” “New Music” again shows us that this magazine is focused on promoting new acts and helping them break in to the UK by featuring them in this magazine. By the image of Paramore’s lead vocalist being placed in front of the mast head again shows this is an established magazine and that the reader can recognise it by other house features and not only its title and that instead of promoting the NME brand on their cover they are promoting the new act which is what the editors are hoping will attract the readers’ interests to this issue. The mast head is very simple and takes up very little room on the actual cover giving it less emphasis than the main cover line and image which is what is attracting the reader to this magazine rather than the actual NME brand.