Music has always given birth to fashion and every new musical style necessitates a new visual style to package it. But in the shift from live performances to the more abstract music video, that visual style has become abstracted further and further away from literal fashion until we arrive at the internet age where the accompanying visual language of music can be anything and everything. Adding to that relationship is an increased fragmentation in musical styles, again generated by the speed of the internet, which means that what I called Witch House and accompanying fashion a year ago is now Web Goth or whatever term the artist wants to ascribe. There is no definitive name for the musical style that so clearly is the inspiration for the current output of brands like Givenchy, but it is quite clearly there and not given half the credit it deserves.
One of the key names to come out of this boom in dark music and dark fashion is BlackBlackGold (previously Gucci Goth) who is coming to Japan to play the hub of the Tokyo scene, Sodom Tokyo, amongst other dates across Japan. We caught up with man himself to talk music, fashion and Japan:
You made your name with your site “Gucci Goth”, what was the initial concept for that site and how did that transition into BlackBlackGold? Why the name change?
I read once that the band Christian Death was so-called as a play on Christian Dior. I thought Gucci Goth would be funnier, and cooler. I changed it when I remembered that I hated Christian Death.
From your perspective how did fashion become such a major part of the dark music scene?
People always feel the need to dress up to reflect the music they love. It makes the setting resonate more. Much of designer fashion tends to be outside the norm and/or tending toward dark-palettes. It’s a natural fit.
In turn, how do you think the fashion establishment has been influenced by the scene you helped create?
There’s certainly a lot more reflection toward the Internet. I’m not sure that’s necessarily a good thing.
Tell us about your personal taste in fashion.
Practically I generally dress in tight black jeans or trousers, Docs, loose black shirt; I’m a bit grungy and a lot busy, and I find this sort of punk simplicity the easiest. In terms of what I want to wear all the time regardless of practicality, I like simple, loose clothing in dark tones. I’m very into robes, especially as it gets colder. I rarely wear prints. Damir Doma and KTZ are essential. I have some really wonderful black Sruli Recht’s SS13 Circumsolar line is probably my favorite thing at the moment. Those monk hats are intense.
What are your plans for while you are in Tokyo?
I’m playing four shows: Radd Lounge on the 21st, SODOM on the 22nd, Fragile on the 27th and Chemical Monsters on the 28th.
What are you personally looking forward to doing while in the city?
I’d like to see some butoh performances and temples and eat lots of food. I’m very into food. I’m also down to see some really bizarre shit. You know the kind I mean. The real nitty gritty. I just think everyone should, once in their life.
Are there any Japanese fashion brands you are a fan of?
I’m not so much brand-aware as I am aesthetic-focused.
What are you going to take on next?
I’m at the beginning stages of writing a book of short fiction and prose. Next year I’d like to return to the US for a month or so of DJ touring, maybe with my brothers in UnReaL (Brandon Xorzyzt and Tom Ass), which is our new brand. You can find that stuff at unreal-life.com. I’ll continue to make parties with my friends. I will try to learn German properly. My band Pale Male will do more shows and release some proper music. Probably I will die.
As you can see the rest of the line-up is looking very strong at Sodom and if you are into the darker side of fashion it really should be on you radar.
To get you in the mood there is also a great mix produced for Sodom which you can listen to here.