It's the end of the line for the historic music weekly...

The print edition of the NME is to cease, it has been announced.

The historic music weekly launched in 1952 as the New Music Express, and carried the first official music chart.

Later to become a hallowed punk weekly, it's gonzo journalistic stylings turned music writing on its head and made stars out of voices such as Charles Shaar Murry, Iain MacDonald, and Nick Kent.

Turning into a free paper last year, the move doesn't seem to have worked in a commercial sense with publisher Time Inc. confirming that the print edition of the title would cease.

Music Week reports Paul Cheal, Time Inc. UK group managing director, as saying:

“NME is one of the most iconic brands in British media and our move to free print has helped to propel the brand to its biggest ever audience on NME.COM. The print re-invention has helped us to attract a range of cover stars that the previous paid-for magazine could only have dreamed of.”

“At the same time, we have also faced increasing production costs and a very tough print advertising market. Unfortunately we have now reached a point where the free weekly magazine is no longer financially viable. It is in the digital space where effort and investment will focus to secure a strong future for this famous brand.”

Part of NME's digital expansion will include a move into broadcasting, with NME Audio set to offer two music channels - NME 1 and NME 2 – through Regional DAB, the TuneIn App and on NME.COM.

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