Responses by Wonderland.
Background: Together with the team at Wax Poetics, we built a brand new platform to read, listen, watch and discover real music journalism. With more than 250 pages of content, the site offers visitors an interactive experience to dig through old records, listen to mixes, personalize memberships, access digital magazines and print shipping.
Born in Brooklyn, New York, in 2001, Wax Poetics was created by a group of writers and record diggers to tell the stories behind beat-digging culture. Fast forward to 2021 with a revitalized identity, Wax Poetics is entering Volume 2 with a toolkit to rerelease its print runs and new, unique digital experiences. This website helps take a previously print-only magazine online to reach a new audience worldwide.
Design core: With most articles being more than 1,000 words, we needed a really tight type hierarchy and varied components to make each read seamless. By creating a chaptering system and analog page turn, users can navigate long-form articles smoothly. One unique piece of content, Re:Discovery, curates reviews of old, unknown and rare albums. We created a unique experience to “dig” through these reviews, re-creating the feeling of being in a record store.
Favorite details: We’re especially proud of the branding. Wax Poetics’s previous identity centered around a confident and timeless wordmark but lacked a recognizable system and the attitude found in its writing. We wanted to pay homage to the details that music fans would recognize. We assembled a neutral palette inspired by the colors of worn records and twinned them with an extensive vintage secondary suite that was inspired by a wide breadth of record genres.
To get that analog feel, we harnessed real grit and paper textures by scanning old records and sleeves. Accompanied by some hand-drawn notations, we referenced those infamous editor’s markups and record scratches.
The type system is built around Bureau Grot, a superpunchy grotesque headline font that strikes the balance between bold character and timelessness.