Friday, November 08, 2002

Fashion (turn to the left)

Last year I was on the train into London. Sitting in the near empty carriage I was aware of a gang of teenagers talking behind me. I knew they were teenagers because they started each sentence with 'Yeah, it's like, y'know...' I couldn't see all of them from where I was sitting, so it wasn't until I got off at Marylebone that I saw the girl with pink dreadlocks, piercings and unfathomably big trousers. My first reaction was to think 'does your mother let you out like that.' My second was 'Wow doesn't she look amazing', in a 'as long as she doesn't move in next door to me' kind of way.

My destination that night was a hot London underground club, Chewing The Fat; the nation's tastemakers have decreed it to be one of the coolest clubs in the country. Whilst I am as influenced by the media as much as anyone I wasn't simply following fashion, this was my kind of club, groovy breaks music, and I was, through happenstance, being cool. The Kids, however, were going somewhere else; presumably they were going to where the revolution is happening.

You see the clubs I enjoy are emptying; The Punters are going elsewhere for their kicks. The solution, apparently, is to get back to the Acid House ideals of 1989. But, much as I like the principle, I know the revolution will not be based on 13 year old ideals, The Kids think clubbing is old fashioned and they are planning something people like me will simply not understand. And that's the way it should be.

Last night we went to Bedrock, which is a tried and tested good night out. It didn't quite take off as we hoped but as I simply like being in clubs with big sound systems, I had fun. However, whilst this is what I enjoy, I know the revolution involving teenagers in pink dreadlocks and unfeasibly big trousers is happening elsewhere.

Simon wanted to take the opportunity to check out the latest club land fashion in an attempt to inspire him out of his trainers, combat trousers and t-shirts. What we observed was that whilst men’s club fashions have stagnated, women’s fashions have gone into a shocking nosedive. The pixie boot was much in evidence, and those floaty tops which only look good on supermodels where floating along to the booming bass lines. Those pushing the envelope even went as far as donning the Ironic Mullet - a look like you've had your haircut by Stevie Wonder. All terrible 80's throw back horrors, yet perhaps, there are boys looking at these girls and saying PWHOAR, or whatever it is young people say these days. Y'see I just don't understand club fashion's.

It's important to enjoy what you enjoy, and I enjoy going to clubs and listening to dance music but, as 60's, 70's and 80's nostalgia tours thrive in the face of clubland's collapse, I know that those I consider underground artists will soon be producing albums for Shania Twain and that I'm a short trip from embarrassing my kids at Acid House Tribute Tours featuring The Austrian Chemical Brothers.


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