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Happenings: The Impossible Tour


Impossible made a stop this week at Urban Outfitters Costa Mesa to set up their unbelievably cool portable pop-up shop in the form of a silver Airstream trailer. Impossible USA is traveling around the country until October 2014 to share the power of the Polaroid. I met up with two of the guys from Impossible, Kyle and Mitch, to learn a little bit more about what's going on inside the trailer, nicknamed "Silver Shade."

Inside Silver Shade you'll find tons of film, cameras, and an even cooler photo booth. Mitch and Kyle also lead workshops in the little nook on the left side of the trailer (which looks like it came straight out of the 1960s). Curious individuals can step inside and try out the various films and cameras as well as learn all about what Impossible is doing. While there, Mitch taught me how to use the brand's new iLab, which allows you to take a photo on your iPhone, attach it to a Polaroid camera and then print a true Polaroid. It's totally cool, so definitely give it a try if you find the tour stopping in your town.

Silver Shade just got back from Coachella and will be stopping at various UO locations throughout the year. Visit Silver Shade when it comes to your town and give analog film life again! Maddie




I'm With the Band: Drowners

Drowners are currently making their way around the West Coast in support of their debut self-titled record. In their downtime between Coachella weekends, they made a stop in Los Angeles to bring their melodic, jumpy jams to The Roxy. Drowners are made up of Matt Hitt, Jack Ridley, Erik Lee Snyder, and Joe Brodie. I had a chat with Matt and Jack to talk about where the band is at right now, their favorite songs to play while DJing, and more. Maddie

Since we last talked you had your debut record come out. How was the recording process and putting it out?
Matt: We finished it about nine months before we actually released it, like a human pregnancy, so when it came out, we were ready for it to come out. It was kinda sitting on the shelf a bit. We did it over three weeks last May in a basement under a bar and Gus Oberg and Johnny T produced it. My 25th birthday passed as we were recording it, and that’s pretty much all I remember about it.

Matt, you've been part of other projects in the past. What's different about Drowners as opposed to your previous projects?
Matt: Literally only that I sing in this one. I do Threats with Jack. I kinda stopped doing all the other shit before Drowners started, so it's really just Threats and Drowners. The only differences are that I sing in one and Jack sings in the other, and he writes all Threats and I write all Drowners. Basically the only thing that switches between the two is who stands in the middle of the stage.

Tell us a little bit about the influences that went into your self-titled.
Matt:
The things we were influenced by to record were like, The Vapors, Gun Club, and we were inspired vocally by like, when you listen to '50s and '60s shit, like when they scream and the mic blanks out. That was kind of a main point of it. Slickness of Vapors, energy of Buzzcocks, yeah.
Jack:
I would say for me, since he obviously wrote the thing in his bedroom, I think it was done with a lot of pain and fun and late nights and such. You play in a different way when all that is going on around. Depending on how you feel you play a bit different. I feel like a lot of long nights and mild suffering in different ways led itself to a nice product.
Matt:
There’s like twenty different versions of the same song, depending on how we feel. Particularly live, it completely changes. Like how hard you want to play or how much you want to scream or how much you want to move, that’s just night to night. When we were doing the record, it was like Jack said, fun and pain; basically two sides of the same coin, where you’re like one or the other.

How would you describe Drowners in three words to someone who has never heard you before?

Matt: “I’d hit it.”
Jack: “Totally fucking awesome.”
Matt: Yeah, do that one.

What is your dream venue or city to play in?
Matt:
I’m gonna sound biased in L.A., but this is only the second time in L.A. and I’ve fucking had a right laugh both times I’ve come here. There’s not like ideal size or whatever. I like playing in front of people who give a shit, because that’s not always the case. That’s my favorite thing. When people give a shit it makes us get hyped on it.



If you could have a tour with anyone, who would it be? Dead or alive.
Matt:
On the top of my head, we did four gigs with Cage the Elephant and I’d want to do another tour with them that was longer. I only had four days of ultimate bliss and I’d like to have like, a month with it.

When you're not playing music, what are you usually up to?
Matt: Sleeping.
Jack: Drawing or skating and walking around. Cuddling with puppies. Cuddling with puppies and watching Law and Order SVU.

What are your go-to tracks when DJing?
Matt: I want to preface this with like, we DJ a lot because we’re absolutely broke and we all need to make money. It’s a job and shit. I started DJing after I moved to New York because I'd sit and listen to Jack and some other people DJ. My favorite three to play I stole completely off Jack. Gun Club "Sex Beat," "Red Hot" by Billy Lee Riley, and "Train Kept A Rollin'" by the Johnny Burnette Trio.
Jack: I would agree with that as well.
Matt: ‘Cause I stole it off you!
Jack: “Love and Desperation" is creeping up on me. That’s a sexy song.
Matt: That is my new absolute favorite song! It’s the singer of Gun Club.
Jack: Jeffrey Lee Pierce.
Matt: It’s the best shit I’ve heard since “Stoned and Starving” by Parquet Courts.

First Look: Teenage


The new documentary Teenage, which opened this weekend in New York City, takes a look at how different youth subcultures scattered across the world and throughout centuries have helped define teenage culture today. Through beautiful, super-8 archive footage paired with the recreations and narrations of four different teens, Teenage creates a vibrant "living collage" of history in a way that no documentary film has done before. (Check out some of our exclusive .gifs from the movie, posted below.) We talked to Matt Wolf, the director of the film, Jon Savage, who wrote Teenage: The Creation of Youth Culture, the book that served as the basis of the film, and Executive Producer Jason Schwartzman, about the movie, what they were like as teens, and why adults forget what it feels like to be a rebellious youth. Hazel



How did you all connect to make this movie?

Matt: I read Jon's book and I thought it was very compelling and that it could be a great film. He had just finished the Joy Division film and I had just finished this movie called Wild Combination about Arthur Russell, so we swapped DVDs and started talking. We thought we could work together so we started a sort of Skype relationship. Eventually I went to Wales with a hard-drive of footage and we started the process of etching out what the film could be. 

Jason: I saw Matt's film Wild Combination and I loved it; I remembered watching it many times over the course of a week after it came out. One person I was eager to show it to was this friend of mine, Humberto Leon, who has the store Opening Ceremony. Humberto said that he was friends with Matt Wolf and later [Opening Ceremony] wanted short films for their store opening in Japan, so he hooked Matt and I up and we made one together. It was during the shoot for that that he told me about how he was going to make a movie based on this book by Jon Savage and I was excited about it. 

In terms of how you, Matt and Jon, envisioned the film, did you have a clear idea of what the film would look and feel like? Did you two know from the beginning that you would want to use archival footage and take this in a more artistic direction?

Matt: We could have done a multi-part television series with expert historians and talking heads, but early on we knew we didn't want to do that. I had accumulated about 70 or 80 hours of archival footage at some point while we were piecing together the film. I had a residency at an artists' colony, and everyday I edited a compilation mix of archival footage to contemporary music. That was a really important part of the process for me. It made this "living collage" style we were going for.

Jon: Matt and I discussed early on that we didn't want the film to be from the point of view of adults, we wanted young people's own words. So Matt and I developed a narration where we took quotes from the book or wrote quotes that gave the teenage point of view—how it actually feels to be young. In general, the film is pretty much how we wanted it to be from the start.

Who is the audience for Teenage?

Matt: Teenage, to me, is an art film in a sense. The film is also an incredible music experience. I see the film almost like a record, and the narrations are like the lyrics to the record. You can just sort of sit and experience it without looking at it. I hope fans of music are a fan. And the film isn't really about your typical teenager, it's about the exceptional young people, people who think against the grain. I wish I had seen this film when I was a teenager.

Jon: Me too. Because then you realize you're not alone. 

Jason: I almost wish they would show this in schools because I think it's exciting. Also, I remember Matt came to my house with a rough compilation and narrated it for me in person, and even when he wasn't talking it was beautiful to watch. 

When you were going through all the footage and even watching the film now, was there a certain quote or piece of footage that really stood out to you?

Matt: The thing that was a big break-through for me was the color footage of German swing kids. The story of the German swing kids is the most moving to me because it was the story of how pop culture and politics collide. These young people were smuggling American music and culture as a way of expressing themselves but also as a subversive tactic to resist the Nazi regime. It's so punk. There's also this quote towards the end of the film, from a letter to the editor for Seventeen Magazine, that says, "I love being seventeen. I wish I could stay this age for awhile. Seventeen is that perfect spot between adolescence, which means you're going somewhere, and adulthood which means you're on the downgrade."

Jon: [laughs] I'm totally downgraded! I love the quote, "My world is speedy and they're old." That's from a book called Middletown, which is about this couple who went to a town in the midwest for a year in the 1920s and reported what they found. But, my favorite bit, is the footage of the Chicago swing jamboree in 1938 with 200,000 kids going mental. And it was an integrated audience, which is amazing, because black American music was incredibly important.

Jason: You know what's wild, and it just occurred to me, is that it blows my mind that you [Jon] wrote this book without seeing a lot of this stuff. The book and the movie, they're companion pieces in a way. Jon wrote this book without having seen a lot of it and Matt made that possible. 

Matt: We were really rigorous in making sure that everything in the film is based on historical truths and uncovered history. We based the narration on primary source quotes and based our characters off of real people. That rigor is really important to us as filmmakers and historians. 

Jason: Another great thing about the film is that it doesn't get into all the stuff you already know. These are the people and the stories that seeped through everything.

There was a line in the press release I was really interested in about activism and rebelliousness, and how you point out that adults today sort of forget what it feels like to be a teen. In your opinion, why do you think there's that separation?

Matt: At the core, I think it's that teenagers represent the future because they're going to live in the next era, and that creates a lot of hope and anxiety for adults. They project their fears onto young people and it leads to a desire to control them. But why do adults forget this need for freedom and self-expression and revert to this need to control? I think it's out of fear.

Jon: And also people get beaten down by life, they really do. People get into habits and raising a family. It also depends on temperament. I've always been a guy who's interested in the present and the future. A lot of my work is in the past but when I was a kid I was into stuff that was really cutting edge, which is why I'm excited about the film. You have the everyman histories, the history of the normal people, but when I was a kid I hated the normal people. I never wanted to be normal EVER. With the book and the film I was interested in the exceptional people who make the change. Because, if there's no change there's just entropy and then everything turns to shit. 

Matt: When I was a teen I was a gay activist, and I remember publishing this underground newspaper and dumping it in the middle of my quad and then going to the bathroom and just barfing. I didn't even think about it as brave, it was just this immediate need to express myself. As I get older I think about what people will think of me and I try not to think that way, but with teenagers, they just purely express in a very visceral way.

Jason: I do remember being an adolescent and feeling angry and sad and not knowing why. As you get older, adults need to find a reason for why you feel all these things. I have a daughter now and whenever I meet a parent of an older kid they go, "Just wait 'til she's 13!" And it's like, why the "just wait"?

Jon: It's part of that experience of separating from your parents and joining the world of your peers. 

Matt: When you're young, a lot of the time you're oppressed. I think with this film, it's really about a formative period in history in which young people were facing an unprecedented amount of oppression from their parents and the government. They were really just struggling for basic forms of recognition and to endure these struggles and define yourself under judgmental and high-pressure critique from adult society leads towards revolution.

Our World: Urban Renewal at Space 15 Twenty


Last week, Urban Outfitters opened a permanent Urban Renewal shop inside of Space 15 Twenty in Los Angeles. Bringing to life the Urban Renewal concept (a line of one-of-a-kind pieces crafted from vintage, deadstock and surplus materials from around the world), here you'll find anything and everything vintage-lovers could possibly want. Unique pieces made from denim, leather, and beautiful printed fabrics mingle with antique treasures and the perfect selection of pre-worn denim. From the candles and crystals by Spellbound Sky to the succulents hanging from the ceiling, this is a shop you'll want to take a few hours to explore. Maddie














Happenings: Urban Outfitters Heads to DTLA


Once home to a booming theater district, Downtown Los Angeles is reemerging as a bright light in the big city. The iconic streetcar is being brought back to Broadway, where Urban Outfitters debuted a new location on December 18 inside one of L.A.'s architectural gems, the Rialto Theatre building, which originally opened its doors in 1917. 


Located between the famous blue Eastern Building and Chinatown, the Rialto had fallen into disrepair, closing in 1987, but through the Bringing Back Broadway initiative, the new UO location is a pioneer in breathing new life into Downtown, where you can now grab a slice at NYC pizza legends Two Boots next door and soon stay at the Ace Hotel, set to open in the former United Artists studio building down the street.




With the Rialto Theatre marquee shining bright outside (lovingly restored along with the theater's original doors), inside you'll find a colossal selection of alphabetized vinyl records and a specially curated crop of Urban Renewal's latest vintage and re-worked finds. Suede fringe jackets mix with neon New Balance sneakers and vintage Fender and Gibson guitars line the walls, reflecting the eclectic style of the neighborhood's young denizens. The huge projection screen at the the rear of the store is a nice nod to the building's history, and will host a rotating selection of visual stimuli for your viewing pleasure. —Maddie Sensible


Happenings: Miista Shoes Pop-Up Shop at Space 15 Twenty


Attention shoe lovers! For one night only, Friday December 13th, at Space 15 Twenty in Los Angeles (1520 N. Cahuenga Blvd), UK shoe brand Miista are hosting their very own pop-up shop. Recently, Miista has collaborated with Urban Outfitters on a few pairs of totally rad shoes, like the Miista x UO Metallic Lace Up Boot, and the Miista x UO Georgie Heeled Oxford. From 6PM - 9PM this Friday, you'll be able to meet the Miista crew, plus see all of their wonderful sartorial creations. Enjoy drinks by Tequila de la Riva, and tunes by DJ Amy Pham. Plus, there's an Instagram contest you should totally enter: just post a photo of your favorite pair of Miista shoes, using the hashtag #URBANLOVESMIISTA, and you might just win a new pair of kicks from them! Maddie






Happenings: 'The Punk Singer'


Over the weekend I spontaneously decided to see a documentary called The Punk Singer at Cinefamily in Los Angeles. Originally premiering earlier this year at SXSW, The Punk Singer is a documentary that chronicles the life thus far of singer and songwriter Kathleen Hanna, who came onto the scene with Bikini Kill in the early '90s. The film features the voices and opinions of many strong feminists, including Kathleen herself, Kim Gordon, Tavi Gevinson, Carrie Brownstein, Kathi Wilcox, and so many more.

The Punk Singer
is a total must see, and you'll have no choice but to feel inspired after watching it. In it, Kathleen Hanna talks about her career with Bikini Kill, Le Tigre, her new project The Julie Ruin, and essentially why she has ever done everything she has accomplished. It's an excellent glimpse inside where and how the Riot Grrrl movement originated, which is what I loved most. If you're not in Los Angeles this week and can't catch the week long run of the film at Cinefamily, you can also view it in various other theaters across the country up until February, and you can also rent it on iTunes. Go see it and let Kathleen inspire you to let your voice be heard! Maddie


Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! Hope everyone has lots of loved ones they want to snuggle up to today, and if not, we wish everyone luck on hiding in the spare room with a bottle of wine until the day is over. Either way, we love y'all.

And if anyone is braving the sales tomorrow, be careful! No flat screen T.V. is worth losing a limb over, yo.

I'm With The Band: Kate Nash

Ahead of the last gig on her recent tour of the United States, I caught up with singer-songwriter Kate Nash at The Fonda in Los Angeles to talk (amongst other things) about the release of her third record, Girl Talk, which came out earlier this year. Kate told me about her biggest role model, her experience at Reading Festival, and what she is most looking forward to about the holidays. Interview and photos by Maddie Sensibile

Maddie: You released your third record, Girl Talk, earlier this year. What was your mission when creating this album?
Kate:
When I was actually writing the record, I wasn't really thinking at all, because I was going through a lot of emotional crap. I didn't have any other way of being powerful, so I just wrote songs. I would go into my house and just explode how I was feeling. It was the only way I could be that honest when I was writing songs. 

I knew what the attitude of the record was going to be, but I didn't know how I was gonna make it until I started writing the songs. Playing bass made it sound really different. I wanted it to be an indie version of Destiny's Child's Survivor album, and bring together all the work I've been doing over the past couple of years… a really empowering album for young girls.

Maddie: Your opinions on feminism are definitely clear and very positive for young women. Growing up, did you have a role model, or is there one that is still important to you?
Kate:
Yeah, I would say my mum, really. I've got two sisters, they're both here [in L.A.] actually. My mum and dad were very open-minded. My mum was very much a debater, and taught us to argue and be challenged. She would always open debates and discussions growing up. That had a really massive effect on me. She's just a really strong woman. She's a nurse and she worked in a cancer unit when she had cancer [herself]. She's so strong, but really motherly and nurturing as well. She's my biggest role model.

Maddie: Speaking of being a role model, you're very close with your fans. Why do you think its so important to maintain this relationship?
Kate:
 Because you can. It's so easy now, it almost feels pretentious if you don't. There's a line where you should be able to switch off and have time to chill out and zone out or whatever, but there are so many opportunities now to connect with your fans, and it's a really nice thing. I have the sweetest fans as well. They're so nice, its ridiculous. They're just really nice to each other, and [have] become best friends across the globe.

It's also been really cool because I got dropped from my record label last year, and to see how supportive my fans are...it's great. As an artist nowadays, you don't have to rely on a record label or a radio hit. With things like Twitter and Instagram, and just meeting your fans, they'll always support you for that. I feel like I'm not just writing songs to be cool or to be a musician. I've always believed in revolution and change, and connection with an audience. 

Maddie: Your Girl Talk tour shows have gained some serious notoriety, stage raids included. What's the best gig you've had this year?
Kate:
I guess Reading [festival] was crazy. I was so nervous about it because I haven't played a UK festival for a few years. When I went to the tent, I was like, No one's going to be there! I'm really scared! And then the tent was packed. I could see people in the audience, either friends or fans that I've recognized from shows on the tours we've been to.

There's this band called The Tuts from the UK that have opened up for us a bunch. They're insane. Really, really fun. Nadia [Javed, vocals] will, like, crowd surf and get dropped. She doesn't care about looking stupid or anything. I've seen her slam down trying to crowd surf and failing, being stuck over the barrier. At festivals it's really hard to get over the barrier, there's like ten men lined up, and everyone was trying and getting carried off, but somehow Nadia managed to run on stage. We were all laughing so much while we were playing.


Me and Kate

Maddie: Who are your favorite artists or songs to dance to at parties?
Kate:
Mariah, first of all, is my queen. I love Mariah Carey so much. Beyonce, "Countdown," when I saw how many times I played that on my laptop, I was like, in shock. I have literally played that the most out of every song on my iTunes. Eminem, a bit of Slim Shady, you can't go wrong. Usher, R&B, Ashanti, maybe some N*SYNC, some Britney. P!NK. I love that Missundaztood album.

Maddie: You always wear the coolest outfits for every performance. What's the best thing you've worn on stage?
Kate:
Recently, I wore this costume by this designer called Bas Kosters, and it's literally made of, like, a thousand tutus. It's insane. You look at it and think, How could that be flattering? But somehow, it is. I went down on the floor after one of my songs, and one of my guitarists was just cracking up. It was just like tutus and a head. I want him to design something for me. He's from Amsterdam, he's always dressed up in crazy makeup and outfits.

Maddie: What's on your Holiday wishlist? 
Kate:
I'm obsessed with space at the moment. All I want are presents to do with space. It could be, like, pajamas that have planets on them, or one of those planet things that spins around, and a telescope. I'm so into Chris Hadfield. I've got his book and I'm going to his book signing in London.

Maddie: And the best gift you've ever received? 
Kate: It was the weirdest Christmas ever. I was 14. I had food poisoning, and I wanted these jeans from this store River Island. They were, like, bootcut jeans that were blue down the side and white down the middle, and covered in glitter. I was so excited for these jeans. We were opening presents and I was, like, puking in a bucket, and opening presents. My family was trying to still include me in the day, and I was just sitting there pretending to have a good time, even though I was destroying the atmosphere. Those bootcut jeans were like my favorite thing ever.

Maddie: Are there any family holiday traditions you're looking forward to?
Kate:
My mum makes the best Christmas dinner ever. My dad cooks the turkey on the barbecue outside. He wears a chef's hat in the garden. My mum is really obsessed with decorating the house as well--there are baskets of pine cones that have been spray-painted with silver and gold, and decorations everywhere. My dogs are like the kids now. We have Max and Molly, two Labradors, and Max, his face on Christmas! He smiles! He puked last year from excitement before anyone had opened presents. I just like going and eating and drinking during the day, and watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Since The Hobbit Two is out this year, I'm really excited.

Maddie: Tonight is the last gig of you tour. What do you have next on the books?
Kate:
I'm releasing a Christmas EP called Have Faith with Kate Nash this Christmas. I'm just going to go home [to the U.K.], and maybe do a Christmas show around that. I was in a movie last year, and that's coming out this week, so I'm going to go home for the premiere of that. As soon as I've done that stuff, I'm just gonna slob out, watch Lord of the Rings and get my mum to feed me.

Friday Download: November 8, 2013


It's Friday, so here are some end-of-the-week internet clippings for you! You know, to get you through that last hour of work. —Katie



Nathan Rabin: R.I.P. Blockbuster
Blockbuster is closing its doors tomorrow... forever. It's weirdly sad? Nathan Rabin also thought it was weirdly sad and wrote this great piece for The Dissolve about all his fond Blockbuster memories.



Cut Copy – Free Your Mind
Cut Copy released their new album this week and if this (GODFORSAKEN) time change is already starting to kill your spirit, then this upbeat album will perk you right back up. And Consequence of Sound wrote a great review about the album that tells you everything you need to know. (But if you're not into reading about music, the link above takes you to the album's Spotify page.)



Malls Across America by Steidl
This is a photography book about mall fashion in the '80s. Pretty delightful, right? The perfect coffee table book, TBH. Check out some of the preview shots in this post; I am obsessed with the Tape World store pictured above.



The National "Lean"
The National put out a new song for the Catching Fire soundtrack, and it's pretty National-y. If this wasn't already made for a movie, I wouldn't be surprised to see it turn up in several Zac Efron movie trailers. (And none of that is a bad thing. The National, and Zac Efron, rule.) This soundtrack is shaping up to be prett-taaay, prett-taaay good.



Arcade Fire "Afterlife" video (Live at the YouTube Music Awards)
I still have no idea what the YouTube Music Awards were. Does anyone? Like, where were they? Why were they? This Spike Jonze-directed Arcade Fire video from the event is pretty cute, though. Greta Gerwig is a national treasure.

Night Things "Sleeping Beauty"



Hey, if you feel like having your HEART RIPPED OUT AND STEPPED ON, then may I suggest watching this video? Our music director here at UO sent me this video to check out, so I did, and then I yelled at him through a waterfall of tears because OH MY GOD. FEELINGS. Had to pause this a minute in to silently weep. And then our other blog team member Ally also got about a minute in before she started weeping. So get your tissues, buddies, because you sure are gonna need them. —Katie

Model Moment: Stella Maxwell


We've been seeing super cool model Stella Maxwell around the office all week, so today we had a quick chat with her to find out where she's from, her secret talents, and her plans for Halloween.
Interview by Katie Gregory

Hey, Stella! Where are you from?
I'm from the U.K. originally. Both of my parents are from Belfast, but I ended up coming here [to the U.S.] to work.

And where do you live now?
I live in New York! I live in Chinatown. I just moved there last week, because before that I was staying near Union Square.

What are some of your favorite places to hang out in NYC?
I have some favorite spots to eat. It depends on what you're looking for. Like, for cafes, Cafe Select is a really cool place to go get a drink. I don't really go to clubs, unless I really want to dance.

Do you have any secret talents or weird hobbies you're into?
Secret talents? I don't know! I guess I'm pretty into fashion and pretty into dressing up and wigs and having fun with fashion. It's so easy to have fun with. I'm really looking forward to Halloween.

Do you know what you're going to be for Halloween yet?
It's a secret! It's gonna be awesome. Last year I was an Avatar. That was really good. Not sure where I'll end up, but I'm sure it will be somewhere cool.

Interview: Peace


Birmingham band Peace made a quick stop in Los Angeles this week, and I was able to have a quick phone chat with lead singer Harry Koisser while they were here. The band's had a whirlwind of a year: They've come out with their debut record, In Love, and have toured everywhere from their home country of England to Japan. Their music has an extremely unique sound that is somewhat psychedelic, but also sounds like something you've never heard before, which is unbelievably refreshing. As Harry says, the band was influenced by "everything you'd ever like." Harry told me about his favorite places, guitars, and the red velvet catsuit he just purchased. Don't fret, he's wearing it on Halloween.
Interview by Maddie Sensibile.

Maddie: Hey! How has your headline tour of the U.S. been treating you so far?
Harry: It's been fantastic, you know. I love going around the U.S.

Maddie: Your debut album, In Love, came out earlier this year, but just came out stateside. What were some of your main influences making the record, musically, or even non-musically?

Harry: Everything. I don't know really. Musically, just everything you'd ever like. We were just doing what we wanted to do, and we'd never made a record before. It was more about just doing it and making a record and writing songs. I guess we were influenced by the opportunity to do it.

Maddie: I know you've recently acquired a double necked Gibson SG, and I've read your tweets about looking for vintage guitar specialists. Is there one guitarist that really got you to become a guitar enthusiast, and eventually led you to playing music?

Harry: Guitarists... Jimmy Page was always my favorite. He's just, the one.

Maddie: Yes, he's everything.

Harry: Yeah, he's brilliant.

Maddie: Speaking of that, what was one of the first gigs you ever went to that you knew sealed the deal early on?
Harry: I don't know really! I went to my dad's band quite a lot. He was a drummer in a covers band, and he played like weddings and stuff. I used to go to those, and I guess that's kind of it, really. Seeing a band, when I was like two years old, was quite cool. It's what I wanted to do when I was really young.



Maddie: Aside from having incredible guitars, you're always dressed excellently on stage. What is the best piece of clothing you've ever worn on stage?
Harry:
I just bought a like, I don't know what you'd call it - it's almost like a catsuit. It's made of like, velour, and it's dark, dark red, almost black. It's kind of what Catwoman would wear, I guess. I've got that. I don't remember where I bought it actually. It's very good.

Maddie: You should wear it on Halloween.

Harry: Yes, I will. 

Maddie: Now, let's chat about tour. What do you guys put on your tour rider? Anything we wouldn't expect?
Harry: We don't actually put anything on it. We just say Whatever.

Maddie: You're very easy.
Harry: Yeah, we can't bother to write it, really. We used to have one, for Christmas, we used to ask for loads of stupid stuff, but now we just ask for whatever.

Maddie: What's the best city you've visited on this tour? Any place you'd really dig returning to?
Harry:
I always like going to Portland. We didn't actually play there, but we did stop there. I know it's not in the States, but Vancouver was really fun.

Maddie: What music have you been listening to lately that you just can't stop listening to?
Harry:
Queen, A Day At The Races. It's quite good. I've been writing new stuff, so I've been listening to myself, which is lame. Dom's [Peace's drummer] been listening to something awfully psychedelic. Dom's always got something terribly psychedelic from like, Budapest.

Maddie: Lastly, is there any song, new or old, that you wish you could've written the lyrics and music to?
Harry: I heard the demo of Lou Reed's "Walk On The Wild Side," and I was like, awesome. You know I've just been reminded of that 'cause he cocked it. I was thinking about that, when I heard [about his passing]. I was like, he wrote some songs that I really wish that I could've written.

Playlist: Remembering Lou Reed


Yesterday the world lost an extremely influential and groundbreaking musician, Lou Reed. Although he was a founding member of The Velvet Underground, he also had an extensive solo career, and was responsible for influencing the psychedelic and punk scenes. Beginning his career with the Underground, Reed later collaborated with other influential artists like Andy Warhol, and worked on his own solo career, even releasing the controversial album Metal Machine Music. Through it all, Reed made a gigantic impact on the world, for musicians and non-musicians alike. His work and attitude influenced and continue to influence nearly every band, old and new. Music surely would not be what it is today without his contributions. Here's a little playlist for your mind and ears to remember some of his best. We'll miss you, Lou. —Maddie





Interview: Palma Violets




Last Saturday, October 19, Palma Violets brought their extremely high-energy show to the El Rey Theater in Los Angeles, and just before the gig I had the chance to sit down with them (literally, on the red, carpeted floor of the venue) to chat. Vocalist and guitarist Sam Fryer, bassist Chilli Jesson, and resident Palma Violets prophet/merch boy/band's best friend Harry Violent joined me. Here's what they had to say.
Interview and live photos by Maddie Sensibile.

Maddie: How's the Rattlesnake Rodeo Tour been treating you so far?
Chilli: It's been great.
Sam: It's been up and down.

Maddie: How was Berkeley yesterday?
Sam:
It was one of the ups, definitely.

Maddie: How does it feel to have such a well-received debut record, and to be so young still? Do you feel happy about it?
Harry: I'm twenty-two...

Maddie: I'm about to turn twenty. I know, getting so old.
Harry: Oh, to be twenty again!

Maddie: Only two years ago!
Chilli: Absolutely, it's been really great. Good reaction.
Harry: Gotta bring it down from the inside, haven't ya?



You recently released the "Invasion of the Tribbles" single with a special etching on the back, the purple "Best of Friends" vinyl, and the white "We Found Love" single as well. Do you enjoy collecting vinyl?
Sam: I think it's fantastic. I wouldn't say we're vinyl collectors, but we all have vinyl collections. We're not fanatics, we don't study it.
Chilli: Our sound guy goes to every city and picks up a little. You also need to have quite a bit of money to get a vinyl collection going, you know what I mean? On tour we need to kind of save our cash to buy food.
Sam: We've got a good collection, though. A good stash in 180.
Chilli: Most of mine are from my parents. Some that I've bought. It's building up into a good stash.
Sam: It's the best way to listen to music, to the ears.

Maddie: Speaking of all things analog, you guys use social media, but not too much. Do you think it's crucial for a band to have a strong social media presence, or do you think it's okay to keep it minimal?
Sam: We keep on being told it's crucial.
Harry: We've been tweeting, though.
Sam: These guys are trying their best.

Maddie: How do you feel about Twitter?

Chilli: Oh. By the way, I deleted it...
Harry: You deleted it?
Chilli: So, we had a twitter account, but I woke up this morning and felt like, very anxious...
Harry: Didn't you tell me something about it this morning? You told me we gained thirty or something.
Chilli: And then I thought, well then we'll just pull out.
Harry: We did two tweets.

Maddie: It was too much for you?
Sam: We're definitely too sensitive for Twitter, I think.
Harry: I'm too long winded as well.

Maddie: You recorded 180 with Steve Mackey of Pulp. Do you want to work with him again?
Sam: We're big fans. We went to go see them in Sheffield, one of their last shows ever.
Chilli: Supposed final show, in England, in Britain.
Harry: Final homecoming show!
Sam: We're big fans of Pulp, yeah. The future is unwritten as well for album two.


Palma Violets' drummer, Will Doyle.

Maddie: Who do you listen to before shows? Any specific things you do?
Sam: We don't listen to music; we actually just watch interviews. Nick Cave does good interviews, and Jesus and Mary Chain do great interviews. They're actually quite entertaining. That gets us geared up.
Harry: Sometimes Shrek and Depeche Mode as well.
Chilli: Yeah, and Zoolander.
Sam: Sometimes other peoples' music can pollute the soul, so you want to feel your own energy as you head onto the stage, as opposed to somebody else's.

Maddie: Since you guys are here, what are your favorite things to do in L.A.?
Chilli: IN 'N OUT BURGER! We've just been.
Harry: I want to go lick the sand on Venice Beach again.
Sam: Last time we saw loads of porpoises.
Harry: Call them dolphins.
Sam: I was told, "They're not fucking dolphins! They're porpoises!"

Danielle Guizio Fall 2013 Look Book

The forever fab Danielle Guizio is back with her Fall 2013 line and the video for the look book has me all revved up for the weekend! The clothes, the girls, the cars... it sounds like something out of a teenage boys' daydream. 



For fall, she's turned her signature All Day I Dream About Burritos shirt into a sweater (seriously... fuck yes!), extended her collection to incorporate beanies, and brought out her inner New York side. I can't wait to get my grubby little hands on some more of Danielle's goodies and I call dibs on stalking her when she comes into town. 

Make sure to check out Danielle's website for some more styles, photos and inspiration from her blog.



Interview: Moffat Nyangau

19-years-old Moffat Nyangau is an illustration student at Rhode Island School of Design. Moffat moved to the US as a young boy and, inspired by American cartoons, he started to draw. Last year, Moffat visited our Urban Outfitters SoHo store and ended up submitting drawings for a sketch contest at UO's Night Outinspired by our Women's Silence + Noise design Fall 2013 concept

The sweater featured in these photos come from his winning design, which (along with a cash prize) was chosen by Dossier Journal’s Polina Aronova, stylist Doria Santlofer, designer Katie Gallagher and Urban Outfitters’ very own Marissa Maximo to be turned from rough draft into reality.


Hi Moffat! Give us a description of your background.
I moved from Kenya, Africa around the year 2001 and continued to grow with the American culture, which at an early age influenced my love for art—all these new things widen my vision of what could be. Now I attend Rhode Island School of Design.

How did you get involved with the competition?
My friends and I were at UO's Night Out to see Icona Pop. While they were setting up, we went upstairs and found the competition was still going on, so I entered.

Silence + Noise X Moffat Nyangau Intarsia Knit Pullover Sweater

Describe your winning design!
It's a combination of a cat, fish scales and water. The cat would be centered, and it was also my intention to give it huge Buddha beads and added gold to make it look very ancient and majestic.

What was your initial reaction when you heard you won?
It was a lot more than I could handle! It was just another regular day of me checking my mail. It took a couple of minutes to register that I had won, which isn’t something I thought would happen. I walked around the room cheering, but no actual words coming out, rolling my arm in the air.



What's your personal style like?
I’ve grown in style of what I’ve worn over the years after having seen what other is out there, from what was only limited to me. I'm an Urban dresser. I wear anything from my granddad's sweaters to Obey and Stussy. The kinds of shirts I like to wear are simple and less graphic. I’m still trying to find new styles that are better than the last, while still maturing with my age — I can’t dress the same way forever.

What's your dream label to design for?
Obey. I love the color choices, which influence me in a lot of ways as an artist.

What do you want to do in the future?
Illustration for a published comic book company, which is something I really want to accomplish—specifically drawing for a continuing Superman story and some of it's covers. I love to create from my mind and create stories. Animation would be next in line — being able to bring ideas to life. My goal is to spread the magic of art to another child, like it was to me. Thanks to constantly watching Dragonball Z, my love for art grew into every form. 

Be honest. Are you going to buy the sweater?
Without question. Seeing something I have made displayed in Urban Outfitters is an achievement worthy of doing so. 

Moffat's Original Design  
Why would you want to collaborate with Urban Outfitters?
"I would like to introduce people to my unique sense of style, so that I'm not the only one dressing like this."

Interview: SKATERS




I caught up with SKATERS frontman Michael Cummings while the band was in Los Angeles last weekend, opening for Palma Violets. Michael told me about how the band quickly got it together, and why New York is a constant source of inspiration for SKATERS, especially for their upcoming record, Manhattan. Also, did I mention how well-dressed they are when they perform? Take a note, boys.
Interview and live photos by Maddie Sensibile

Introduce yourself and what you do in the band!

I'm Michael and I sing in SKATERS.

So you guys have been around for a little over a year. How did you get started?
We formed kind of quickly. I met Josh here at a party in LA - both of our bands were winding down, and Noah and I were already in another band previously. We were moving to New York, and Josh was like, "Let's start a band!" We got really messed up at a party, and I didn't think much of it. He wrote me one email that was like, "Maybe I'll come to New York in November or something." I didn't hear from him until October 31st. He shows up, writes "I'll be there tomorrow at 4" on an email, and then that night we went out for drinks. It was Noah's birthday, and we started the band the next morning. Then we booked three shows!

How did you decide you wanted to be called SKATERS, and why the stylization?

The name was floating around before the band even really started. I just thought it was a good name for a band that was formed, because I wanted to do something more youthful than my previous band; play faster songs and stuff like that. The reason that it is in all caps is because of aesthetics.

SKATERS' music is definitely many genres mixed together. How would you describe your genre, and what influences have you had over the years?

I would describe it as fancy punk music. Someone said it was, "Pre-Giuliani Post-Punk" which I thought was pretty good, because that's where we draw a lot of our inspiration from, New York punk bands from the '70s. It's for other people to figure out what we sound like, and compare us to that, which they do.

Your debut album is called Manhattan, and right now the band is based in New York. What do you love about the city that you really feel you can't find anywhere else?
The energy. It's a very fast-paced way of living, and everything that's on this record has been inspired by things we've done or seen in New York in the first year of starting this band. And the songs' pacing and stuff like that, it all kind of feels like New York to us.

The lyric video for "Deadbolt" looks like an old karaoke video, and I've read that you're a fan of karaoke. What is your favorite song to karaoke?
Bruce Springsteen, "Born to Run." That's my favorite.

Lastly, can you tell us a little bit about what to expect from your debut?

We're totally excited for it. You can expect like thirty-three minutes of music, and no filler. We just tried to cut it down to songs you'd want to hear.

Arcade Fire: "Afterlife"

"Afterlife, oh my God, what an awful word," sings Win Butler on the new Arcade Fire tune, getting super deep and making us think as usual, and simultaneously making us dance at the same time. The video is comprised of the song's lyrics and footage from an old film called Black Orpheus, which manages to totally depict the song's story. Very impressive! Arcade Fire's new record Reflektor is out next week on October 29th. Maddie

UO Afterfest Presents Making Time: Austin

Saturday, November 9, we'll be hosting AFTERFEST at ACL Live in Austin (310 Willie Nelson Boulevard). Twin Shadow and Simian Mobile Disco will be the special guests for the night, and, as always, Dave P. and Sammy Slice will be DJing to keep everybody groovin'. Admission is free with a Fun Fun Fun Fest wristband, but make sure you RSVP here. Everything goes down at 10PM, but arrive early to guarantee admission! See you there!