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Posts tagged “John Lockett

Enter Spring

GQ Spring Trend
GQ’s 2011 Spring Trend Report via GQ

by John Lockett

Most of sunny Florida experienced its first major spring rain today, which means it’s time for Vautour to start reporting on the season’s hottest fashion trends that go beyond rain boots and floral prints. From chinos to cardigans, and from shorts to dress shirts, our fashion team will analyze trends and help you pick out your perfect spring wardrobe.

GQ’s Jim Moore released his 2011 Spring Trend Report that featured some burgeoning looks along with well-established styles that have been slightly tweaked. Some highlights (pictured above) include dressier sports coats, tennis shorts, colored chinos, cardigans and just about anything red. There are, of course, classics that can never go wrong, like knit ties, short-sleeve oxfords, polos and loafers. And with fresh new styles comes the need to toss out some of the more dated, overdone looks: flip-flops, plaid shorts, pastels. You get the picture.

Each day this week, we’ll discuss some of these looks and fill you in on how you can best achieve them. In the meantime, try some stuff out on your own. Maybe you’ll be the next spring trendsetter.

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Ray-Ban Redux: Reworking the Wayfarer

Matte black Ray-Ban Wayfarers
Photo by John Lockett

by John Lockett

If you want to make a statement on a sunny day, nothing beats the timeless Wayfarer. Ray-Ban introduced this alternative to metal frame sunglasses in the early 1950s, and they have only occasionally waned in popularity. Despite briefly falling out of vogue in the 70s and 90s, these thick-rimmed glasses managed to define era after era since its inception.

Such mainstream style raises the question: Are Wayfarers overdone? Trite? Unoriginal? In some ways, yes. Hoards of poor replicas and knockoffs have cheapened the look, not to mention the bad rap Wayfarers have received at the hands of hipsters and fratty folk alike.

While Wayfarers are timeless, they have a tendency to get stale. I hate to say it, but there’s nothing more tired than glossy Black wayfarers, whether they’re the real deal or ripoffs from Chinatown.  Ridiculous colors like turquoise and hot pink aren’t helping either.

But there is hope.Black, blue and green wayfarers

Ray-Ban recently released a new, slightly slimmer Wayfarer aptly called the “New Wayfarer.” It gets better. You can get rubber crystal versions of the New Wayfarer in black, blue and green. They’re essentially matte finished frames in muted colors. The difference may be subtle, but the results are astounding.

In my opinion, the main objective of personal style is to stand out while feeling confident at the same time.  These Ray-Bans do just that. Not to mention they fit perfectly, snug around the ears and light on the nose. (Note: My head/face is average size. I think.)  The price is even better, only $120.

Matte black Wayfarers can be hard to come by. I made three trips to Sunglass Hut with no luck. The salesman said they typically only have one in stock, and it flies off the shelf. So they finally shipped me a pair, which only took a day before these spectacular shades made it onto my face. I haven’t taken them off since.

Not of fan of the matte colors? Go with tortoise shell. There’s nothing classier.

Wayfarer front view
Photo by John Lockett

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Give me Justice!

by John Lockett

Justice exploded onto the scene in 2003 with their Simian remix “We are Your Friends,” solidified themselves as electro-rock gods comparable to Daft Punk after their debut album “†” was released in 2007, then vanished from the radar, a flash of brilliance with the staying power of a spark.

Xavier de Rosnay and Gaspard Augé, the French duo behind the band, rode the success of their first album for nearly two years. They released a live album and documentary dubbed “A Cross the Universe,” at the end of 2008 that captured the raw, unbridled energy of their sets and their rock-n-roll lifestyle.

Their songs, which rattled the foundations of nightclubs around the world, were catchy while being difficult to listen to.The purely electronic tracks possessed a certain finesse while being somewhat unrefined. They were obviously inspired by the forefathers of the genre, Daft Punk, but the tunes turned out by Justice were fueled by energy that could hardly be contained by any speaker system.

Then there was nothing.

After touring for a few years and releasing a couple remixes, the highly anticipated follow up album never surfaced. There was speculation that Justice was going to produce a Red Hot Chili Peppers record, but that rumor never came to life. As the ongoing tides of music continued its brutal cycle, Justice seemed to fade away.Justice's New Single Photo Announcement

Then there was light.

It may have only been a flicker of light, but something was happening. On March 11, Justice posted a cryptic picture on their Facebook page, the only web presence they have. The spark set off so many years ago burst into a wildfire of excitement and anticipation. Fans echoed the enthusiasm of Antoine Clips who commented “OH MY F—– GOD.”

Following the epic post of a toppled-over stone cross glowing in a desert, Justice made an announcement:

THE BEATING OF A MILLION DRUMS
THE FIRE OF A MILLION GUNS
THE MOTHER OF A MILLION SONS

“CIVILIZATION”
…First single of Justice’s upcoming album
04-04-11

They were back.

Soon after, Adidas released a commercial featuring the new single. The advert was directed by their old cohort Romain Gavras who directed  “A Cross the Universe” and the music videos for “Stress” and M.I.A.’s “Born Free.” Katy Perry and B.O.B make appearances as the track beats onward through Gavras’ trademark grittiness.

“Civilization” is everything you’d want from Justice. It ‘s guttural. Heavy. A song you can definitely bang your head to. But it’s nothing really different. Their signature overdrive and disco influences are still there with a few flashes of new sounds. Still, it’s what we want to hear. It’s what we’ve been waiting for.

For now, their new album remains a mystery. “Civilization” will be released April 4 and is available on Youtube . Until then, brace yourself. Once Justice unleashes the floodgates, get ready to D.A.N.C.E.

 

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Fear and Loafing

Suede loafers from Aldo. Photo by John Lockett

by John Lockett

I was somewhere around Barstow on the edge of the desert when my love of loafers began to take hold.

By Ralph Steadman

It was a long journey from loathing to loving these stylish slip-ons. I always thought they looked hideous, mainly because seeing a pair would conjure up images of the ratty black penny loafers my dad wore to church when I was a kid. It doesn’t help that my exposure to shoes while going to high school in Niceville consisted of Rainbow flip-flops and nothing else.

Needless to say, my taste in footwear was limited from an early start. But after interning at the Mecca of fashion last summer, I finally realized how genius, practical, and stylish loafers really are. And they’re not only for the sartorially inclined.

Loafers will probably be the easiest pair of shoes you’ve ever owned. They’re perfect for slipping on when you’re in a hurry, but you still want to look good. You can wear them with virtually anything, from shorts and a t-shirt when you’re on your way out to enjoy all that spring has to offer, to a formal suit when you’re going in for an interview or going out with your girl. Socks are never required. And above all, they stay in prime condition with little care. Unless you’re in the middle of a savage journey to the heart of the American Dream.

They come in all sorts of colors, textures and designs, so it may be daunting picking your first pair. Take my advice: start simple –dark brown suede or leather, no frills—get used to them, then move on up to something a little more bold and daring. Like these Tom Ford loafers below. Aldo offers a wide variety at affordable prices. My first pair cost  only $45 on sale. It’s well worth it considering all the compliments you’ll receive.

In case you were wondering, all these “Fear and Loathing” references are a tribute to Hunter S. Thompson, who set out on his infamous Las Vegas adventure 40 years ago today.

“Some may live, but the crazy never die.” -HST

Tom Ford Shoes
From Tom Ford’s “Made to Measure” collection.

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Review: Last Night on Earth by Noah and the Whale

by John Lockett

It happens all the time.

Last Night on Earth released March 7. Check out the awesome
album art. Courtesy Mercury Records.

Musicians come out with a new album that is completely different from what fans expect, and all hell breaks loose. The musicians explain that it is simply their way of growing as artists. Finding new sounds, new ways of expression. All the while, fans are not afraid to unleash battle cries of betrayal.

This goes back to when Bob Dylan went electric, and more recently, when Iron & Wine traded in banjos and slide guitar for electric noise and horns.

Now it’s Noah and the Whale’s turn. NATW released their latest album, Last Night on Earth, on March 15, three years after their last, The First Days of Spring (2009). From the very beginning, it appears to be a vast departure from their earlier work. Gone are the violin-driven, acoustic indie-folk ballads they were known for. Instead, we’re given layers upon layers of synth, drum machines and…a gospel choir. Sounds like a bad 80s album.

But trust me, it’s good.

The record clocks in at just over 33 minutes, but it’s half an hour of pure bliss packed with eclectic beats, melodies and beautiful music. It’s teeming with poetic references to Bukowski, while paying homage to the godfather of punk, Lou Reed. There are also undertones of Leonard Cohen thrown in the mix as well.

All in all, Last Night on Earth is the perfect next step in the evolution of NATW. While it outwardly seems like everything has changed, a lot stays the same. It retains elements NATW fans love. There are a couple songs featuring violin and those catchy guitar riffs. In fact, most of the songs are quite similar to their predecessors and could have easily appeared on their other albums.

The first single, “L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N.,” has energy unlike anything else they’ve done. The next single, “Wild Thing,” feels like classic NATW with a hint of electricity.

Get a copy today! It’s only $7.99 in the iTunes Store. In the meantime, enjoy this video.

http://vimeo.com/20328782