Welcome back, my friends…

To quote Vivian Stanshall’s prelude to “The Intro and the Outro,” “Hi there, nice to be with you, happy you could stick around.”

It’s been a minute, as the kids say, since the wheels came off the old TrouserPress.com site. The message board was the first to go. That might not seem like a dealbreaker for a website, but in truth, it was the only piece still active. A combination of factors had left the site largely untended, more a museum of a quickly receding past than a useful 21st century destination. Fixing the forum proved to be a dead end; with some time on my hands, I decided it was time for the complete revamp I’d long been toying with.

The original impetus for creating trouserpress.com was the publication of The Trouser Press Guide to ’90s Rock in 1997. The previous four editions were out of print, and the new book, which would be the final print version, began where they left off, so making those thousands of reviews available online for free seemed important.

A second version of the site, launched in 2002, incorporated the contents of that book. We began updating entries and adding new ones. (We also incorporated, with permission, some of the reviews from BadaBoom Gramophone #3: The Bands Not in the Trouser Press Guide Guide.) That went on for a good while, then it fizzled out, bereft of both editorial and technical support. That left the site to a hardy group of commentators who made the message board a delightful cracker barrel of discerning musical intelligence.

A couple of years ago, I began a project to scan one complete issue of Trouser Press magazine each week and post it to a Facebook page. I was glad to finally bring all that great old journalism back into circulation, but the presentation left a lot to be desired.

So that was one thing I wanted a redeveloped TP site for. I also had a hankering to make it an online music magazine. Then my wish list added photo and video galleries. I wanted the reviews to be easier to read, update and search. And, circling back to the beginning here, a forum that didn’t crap out, wouldn’t be sandbagged by spambots (who repeatedly crashed the site by exceeding its managed bandwidth) and retained all of the lively debates that had taken place on the old one. Fortunately, I found a super-talented and keen developer, Jon Uleis, who could do all of those things.

And so here we are. Glad you could stick around.

The new TrouserPress.com is viewable on all sorts of devices, with useful discography links to Discogs.com. The complete set of issue scans is indexed and fully searchable; it will soon be augmented by articles from four years of Trouser Press Collectors’ Magazine.

Now my work really begins. The articles posted here are just random selections; new stuff will be on its way soon. I have no expectations of being able to seriously bring the reviews section into the 2020s, but I am looking forward to adding what I can. Any past contributor who wants to update entries, by all means send me your copy. I am open to article pitches, photo submissions (only by photographers; creative rights must be respected) and suggestions of all types. And, hosanna, the message board is open to one and all (no spam, please), so have at it!

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