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Posts from December, 2009


Alexander Wang – Sidney Backpack

By Roni Brunn | December 29, 2009 | News

This bag fuses a couple of emerging trends, and it does so in an unexpected material.  We have the letter A in a varsity font for the varsity trend, a trend that hinges on a high end take on preppiness as well as varsity jackets (and esp my favorite, the Balenciaga FW 09 men’s varsity jacket).  Also, backpacks are coming back.  Since it’s an Alexander Wang piece, we’re seeing a tougher take in black leather with perforated details.  This bag will stay current for at least four seasons.  It will then look fine, but anyone who buys it now will be sick of varsity/high end prep in a couple of years.

If you like the varsity trend but think this bag isn’t literal enough, check out this Alexander Wang clutch shaped like a floppy football.

Get it at LUISAVIAROMA

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House of Holland x Linda Farrow Plexiglas Sunglasses

By Roni Brunn | December 28, 2009 | News

Eyewear firm Linda Farrow has had a bunch of amazing collaborations – examples include Veronique Branquino, Dries van Noten, and Rodarte. Its previous turn with London-based House of Holland resulted in Boy London-looking, round-lensed glasses, kind of like the ones Lady Gaga wears in the Paparazzi video. This season, the collaboration resulted in Plexiglas sunglasses that combine lens and frame into one body. I love the idea, and the execution looks like a flattened, cartoon version of 80s glasses. I love the colors, but black would be much better for me.  Yeah, I realize black isn’t the point here.
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Avner – “Besatt”

By Roni Brunn | December 26, 2009 | Music downloads, News


A cinematic, mostly black and white video just came out for Avner’s “Besatt” (possessed in Swedish).  “Besatt” comes from the album Lyssna, released by Sincerely Yours.  The label is also home to the Tough Alliance and JJ.  Avner talk-sings over an orchestrated instrumental, all with a rich reverb and clever arrangements.  I like the lush simplicity.  Then there are a couple of points that I don’t get.  He paints yellow stripes on his cheeks, and we’re past the MGMT tribal heyday.  And I’m a little weirded out by Swedish artists taking on Jewish names (wtf Sally Shapiro?), but maybe Avner means something else to him besides King Samuel’s commander-in-chief and a common first name in Israel.

Avner – “Besatt”

Avner Lyssna

Get Lyssna on iTunes or Clicktrack

Visit Avner at MySpace or get more info at his label’s site, Sincerely Yours

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Empty LA

By Roni Brunn | December 23, 2009 | News

empty la 30Photographer Matt Logue‘s book Empty LA features images of a desolate LA that are especially poignant this time of year.  It seems that everyone leaves town to go home, since this movie set of a city isn’t really home to that many people.  The photos are haunting and striking even without this context, and the highway shots remind me of a Gucci campaign from the 90s which was shot with the winding concrete of LA freeway overpasses as background.

Get Empty LA as a 13″ x 11″ book or a 10″ x 8″ book

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Drugstore Publicis Open Late Ads

By Roni Brunn | December 21, 2009 | News

Publicis Drugstore accessories

This aspirational campaign for Paris’s Drugstore Publicis seems to be selling a fantasy of a refined European lifestyle/consumption combined with the fast-paced conveniences more typical in the States.

It’s really tough for me to stand back and just analyze these posters because I’m totally buying into them.  The visuals have gorgeous typography and clean illustrations, and the situations kind of speak to me.  They do.  I, too, have a luxury handbag for a brain, just like the woman above.

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The Guitar Hanger

By Roni Brunn | December 18, 2009 | News

guitar-hangerThe Guitar Hanger functions exactly as its name indicates.  It’s like a clothes hanger fitted for a guitar’s neck instead of an article of clothing.  Seems like a good thing to have if there’s a lot going on where you live and putting the guitar down on a floor stand is risky.  It’s also good for people who don’t hang up a lot of clothes and have lots of rack space.

It looks like a well made, sensible gadget.  However, I’ll stick with storing my guitars in cases in a closet, so nobody’s in danger of hearing me play.

Get the Guitar Hanger for $25 here

Via I New Idea

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Ithaa Undersea Restaurant

By Roni Brunn | December 16, 2009 | News

ithaa1The world’s first all-window, undersea restaurant, Ithaa lies 16 feet below sea level at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island hotel.  The restaurant has a 14 guest capacity, and its menu features Maldivina-Western fusion food (can’t get too exotic with the dishes when the location is so specific).

The restaurant is built in a T-shaped floor plan, and its tunnel roof structure was originally designed for the Kuala Lumpur National Science Center.  It was actually built in Singapore, transported to the Maldives, lowered by steel piles, and secured to them with concrete.  The entrance is through a spiral staircase at the end of a jetty.  Let’s hope that’s the only exit people have to use.  The structure is expected to last about 20 years, so you’ve got another 15 or so to try a meal there.

I’m freaked out by these photos, even though this is probably the only way I’d experience an undersea expedition.  I bet it feels safe once you’re there.  I’m not kidding; this place looks really scary to me.  Plus it’s weird to eat in front of animals, and weirder to drink water when you’re submerged.

This guy looks like he’s having a good time, though:

The hotel recommends booking two weeks in advance.

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Psychedelic Apples of Death Umbrella

By Roni Brunn | December 15, 2009 | News

jared nickerson umbrella 1New French firm Dandy Frog goes for fun, colorful umbrellas customized by artists.  Its first edition umbrella sold out within three days of launch.  This piece by Jared Nickerson of J3Concepts features the designer’s Psychedelic Apples of Death illustrations, which include cartoonish milk cartons, hot dogs, rainbows, diamonds, popsicles, and apples.  Yes, this umbrella draws from childhood iconography, but its quality and attention to execution makes it legit.  The screen printing looks super precise, and at 90cm, the umbrella is not a toy.  It’s been raining in LA, and my Marimekko umbrella is looking a bit dated and complacent.  These umbrellas cost about 30€, and even their product shots are gorgeous.  I want one for home and one for the car.

jared nickerson umbrella 2jared nickerson umbrella 3jared nickerson umbrella 4

Get it at Dandy Frog

Via Fubiz

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Dag för Dag – “Hands and Knees”

By Roni Brunn | December 14, 2009 | Music downloads, News

dagfordag-hawaiiBrother and sister Sarah Parthemore Snavely and Jacob Donald Snavely are Dag för Dag, a duo that’s Swedish and American with a history spanning Greece, Spain, Wisconsin, Honolulu, and Stockholm.  They remind me of Throwing Muses.  Is there gonna be a grunge retro moment, or can we leave it at this nice song?

Dag för Dag – “Hands and Knees”

Visit Dag för Dag on their site, iTunes, MySpace, or Facebook

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From in V&V Magazine

By Roni Brunn | December 10, 2009 | From, News

V&V mag nr 1 coverFrom got a great feature in a cool new magazine called V&V.  V&V is from Willis, the guy behind the Vinyl & Vodka blog.  He’s got amazing taste, and I love the whole magazine.  It’s something like V x Vogue x Nylon, though it’s informed by Willis’ eye.  We’ve had fashion magazines cover music, but it’s really great to have a music blogger take on fashion.

Lots to read, so take your time to get to our piece on page 27.  You’ll read about how we’ve grown and get some details on upcoming releases.  I loved reading that we look more dressed up/classy than other bands out there.  Also check out what I wrote about Alexander McQueen’s spring 2010 collection on page 25.  It was really fun for me to write that bit, and I’m so grateful to Willis for having me on board.

Looking forward to more issues!

Links: V&V, Vinyl and Vodka

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