Marni shapes I love. Marni layers I love. But I struggle with the colors and patterns, chaos constructed. This spring season's appearance of cocktail-induced sporting activity ensembles is a puzzle I care not to assemble, but the shoes—goodness gracious, the shoes. These I love.
He greeted the naked star with a bow of the head, his heart surging as the car leaped. "It seems to be greeting me across the sky—the star," he said, amused by his own vanity. Above the coloring of the afterglow the blade of the moon hung sharp and keen. Something recoiled in him. "It is like a knife to be used at a sacrifice," he said to himself. Then, secretly: "I wonder for whom?"
(From his short story "The Witch a la Mode")
Post-punk saved my mind. After a gruesome afternoon, a few ruckus, cumbersome songs can fix frayed wires. Tonight's installment of Twee As Punk is called "There's...Grapevine." That's that:
1. "There's Only One Thing Left to Say" by Velocity Girl
2. "Savoir Faire" by Family Fodder
3. "Love Song" by Au Pairs
4. "Oblivious" by Aztec Camera
5. "Beyond the Sea" by Glo-Worm
6. "Love at First Sight" by Half Japanese
7. "Searching for Mr. Right" by Young Marble Giants
8. "Winter '94" by Henry's Dress
9. "Just Too Bloody Stupid" by Close Lobsters
10. "Lovecraft" by The Vaselines
11. "Salvador Dali's Garden Party" by Television Personalities
12. "We Are All Bourgeois Now" by McCarthy
13. "Gut of the Quantifier" by The Fall
14. "Ain't You" by Liliput
15. "I Heard It through the Grapevine" by The Slits
Twee As Punk is for Fridays, and tomorrow is Friday. Hence, at 8pm tomorrow on ACRN.com, I will start this week's playlist of twee and post-punk. Young Marble Giants, Henry's Dress, and Television Personalities, seen above, are on the bill. Give twee a chance.
I am a ridiculous man. Now they call me a madman. That would be a promotion if it were not that I remain as ridiculous in their eyes as before. But now I do not resent it, they are all dear to me now, even when they laugh at me—and, indeed, it is just then that they are particularly dear to me. I could join in their laughter—not exactly at myself, but through affection for them, if I did not feel so sad as I look at them. Sad because they do not know the truth and I do know it. Oh, how hard it is to be the only one who knows the truth! But they won't understand that. No, they won't understand it.
(From his short story "The Dream of a Ridiculous Man")
I do love this Swedish brand and designer Jonny Johansson's informal, blank, modern separates, although these clothes do not make for striking runway shows. I am more eager to see them in online boutiques when Spring 2011 arrives.
And the playlisting begins, as the first installment of my new specialty show is completed. Here is what I played, the inaugural Twee As Punk playlist, "Indian...Ether," which started with Beat Happening (seen above):
1. "Indian Summer" by Beat Happening
2. "Words & Smiles" by Tiger Trap
3. "If You Need Someone" by The Field Mice
4. "I'm Alright with You" by The Pastels
5. "Big Pink Cake" by Razorcuts
6. "On My Mind" by The Flatmates
7. "Throw Aggi Off the Bridge" by Black Tambourine
8. "I Don't Want to Be Friends with You" by Shop Assistants
9. "Disneyland" by The June Brides
10. "Falling and Laughing" by Orange Juice
11. "Lola" by The Raincoats
12. "Too Many Creeps" by Bush Tetras
13. "Now That You've Gone" by Delta 5
14. "Ether" by Gang of Four
So starts my new radio show, Twee As Punk, tomorrow (Friday) night at 8pm, Eastern Standard Time. Remember the poster? You can listen in at ACRN.com, as I will be playing a nice batch of post-punk and twee pop should-be hits to start the evening off right. Expect The Flatmates, The June Brides, and Delta 5, all seen above, among others. I promise good sounds, as if these pictures do not already ensure them.
Fashion Week had barely begun when I resigned to familiar disappointment in the Spring collections. But it has only taken three fine, compelling exhibitions for me to change my mind and embrace the new season, these collections being those shown at Rodarte, 3.1 Phillip Lim, and, now, Proenza Schouler.
Since the nascent stages of their brand, Lazaro and Jack's collections have consistently increased in saturation and fervor, most recently to a fault. Maturity had previously been bypassed for dynamic imagery—neon tie-dye, radical platforms, and spray paint, stovepipe trousers. But here, in Spring 2011, their art girl favors splendid dresses, slackened skirts, and refined pumps, and my heart is again won by Proenza Schouler, after seasons of flailing allegiance.
I am far too aware that I already gushed fashion love this evening. But when I saw Phillip's collection, even in tiny thumbnail photos, a gasp escaped me. The styling was so balletically spare, each model wearing the separates I want to wear, the hairstyle I should have. Where Phillip has occasionally forced too much, he let the looks happen, the spring season working in his favor. Fashion with intelligence, without folly is what he actualized, and all I want to be is a 3.1 girl.
Laura and Kate did more than I dared desire from a Rodarte collection: they pared their heavy-handed embellishments and came down to earth. And coming down to earth need not mean that the Mulleavy sisters settled for realism or common wearability. Instead, they brought high fashion possibility to suburbia, where a range of burnt sienna wood paneling, arts and crafts shop upholstery, and English china was confected into clothes with punkish energy and lissome fabrication. At once, Laura and Kate have refreshed New York with what I think is their most stellar and, thrillingly, their most wearable collection.
Clearly glamour is not my forte and neither is color, so Marc Jacobs' show did not thrill me. Far too many poofy cummerbund-nipped waists and voluminous disco-era shoulder attachments. Too much iridescence and eye makeup. And I must admit how fatigued I am by the sight of standard one-shoulder silhouettes this season—and those past. His eponymous line featured the glamour and plain chicness I expect from his Louis Vuitton womenswear, instead of the oversized, overworn awkwardness that I loved about Marc's Fall 2010 collection.
Fashion Week in New York has thus far not been full of good surprises. To my dismay designers I rely on for wearable, structured clothes have leaned toward hanging, nearly indistinguishable silhouettes—here's looking at you, Rag & Bone.
But Scott Sternberg's Band of Outsiders brand maintained his appealing play school charm. As the name of Sternberg's brand suggests, if Godard's Band of Outsiders had been part of an American New Wave of cinema, these are the clothes the beautiful young people would have worn as they ran through museums and danced the Madison.
In Internet radio land I am DJ Finn Finn. Last year, I hosted and curated a show called Indie ABCs, but that now has been gracefully replaced with my new specialty show, Twee As Punk, during which I will revel in driven post-punk and jangly twee on Friday evenings. I have even borrowed art from my favorite such band, Black Tambourine, in celebration of the new occasion. So be sure to tune in, starting Friday, September 17, at 8pm, on ACRN.com.
Here I lie in a new room yet a familiar situation. I have returned to dormitory living and will commence a school schedule tomorrow. The room is a new one for me yet so much like the ones I have had before. But this time I have improved my walls with a selection of posters I gained from my summer experience and a few other objects I enjoy. This school year is already promising to be my busiest year yet, but for a few more hours I have nothing to do but watch tennis.