Books about music are my jam.
I know. That pun was terrible but it is honestly the truth. I love music as much as I love comics so when people blend them I almost always try it out. Half the time the book isn’t very good but I at least appreciate the attempt and the love of music. Luckily first time comic writer Jeff Rougvie knocks it out of the park.
Martin Mills is an A&R man for a major record label. His job is to sign new bands that he thinks have a sound that can be marketable. The first issue is all about a back room conversation that takes place after a show in a nearly empty club. The band manager (and girlfriend of the lead singer/song writer) is demanding but oddly good at being a manager. In the middle of negotiation we get a few pages of backstory on Martin and that’s where the story really shines in this issue.
I’ve been a fan of Moritat since I discovered Elephantmen about a decade ago. He can change up his style to fit about any kind of story and does a weirdly effective chibi style for the flashbacks. The main book is dark and kind of gritty. A perfect style for a book about seedy backroom deals in the 80’s even if it does get a little overly cartoony at times.
Rougvie gives us his personal history with music and comics in a backup feature. It is almost as good as the comic itself. In addition to the book their website has a ton of great features including a spotify playlist of music that inspired the book. Check it out at https://www.gunningforhits.com/.