The first issue, released in July of 1990, had interviews with Jawbreaker, Samiam, and Mr. T. Experience, and was very well received nationally, as well as in the local Syracuse hardcore scene where the bands and music featured in the first issue originated from. Although it had a limited run of 300 copies, it got decent reviews in both Factsheet Five and Maximum Rock N Roll, gathering the kind of attention the local scene had very little exposure to.
In later years the zine branched out into a record label (UPstate Records) and released the compilation tape Beware of the Sign and a 4-song compilation 7" record entitled No Exit, No Return. The zine became more involved in the local hardcore and straight edge scene and soon became one of the defacto local zines of the growing Syracuse scene.
In 1997, with the death of the editor's mother, and college wrapping up, the zine fell to more pressing matters and the last issue, Upstate #7 was published in the spring of 1997. The largest issue both in physical page size and content, the zine sold very few copies and had a very limited distribution of 1200 copies. The last issue was laced with esoteric prose, over-the-top design ("this looks like Raygun" being the typical comment) and packed with record and zine reviews.
Upstate Zine was published by David Palmer.