It’s sibling duo Wild Belle that have caught our ears’ attention this week. The Chicago pair, Natalie and Elliot Bergman, are a mysterious musical troop that are difficult to unravel; a blend of varied influences and smattering of genres. Reggae, soul, electro-pop and chill-wave all come through in their saxophone-heavy tunes and by some magic these two manage to pull off a new sound with nuanced gusto.
Tracks range from swooning and beautiful to dancehall classics. There’s a great clanging bass and electro keyboards while Natalie declares she “needs a man who treats her right” in It’s Too Late and a languid reggae vibe pulls you through for Keep You, the video of which features a dashing Natalie chasing around a cute seven year old and singing sweetly, “I’ve got a pretty face and a nice dress.”
Unsurprisingly the band have been well received through the coolest of publications and hottest of festivals. Fresh from Coachella they’re soon off to play Chicago’s cooler than cool Lollapalooza and recently played in a live session for Nylon magazine. They’ve also won press over, appearing in the cult Interview magazine and the little know fashion tome, Vogue. There might just be no stopping this hip and very hot duo. We spoke with the ravishing Natalie about Brazil and her favourite gig.
What inspires the music you make?
Love, travel, colors and patterns. We love Sun Ra and Doo Wop. We love Brazil and will get to visit Sáo Paulo in April! We are drawn to Artists like Malick Sidibé and his stunning photography. Etta James is another big inspiration to me. I could sing along to her music and voice forever.
When did you know that you wanted to go into music?
Music has always been a part of my life – and so I never really thought twice about it. I kind of figured that I had no other choice but to make music.
What’s the best gig you’ve ever played?
We had a wild show in El Paso a few months ago and TONS of kids came over from Juarez, Mexico to see us. It was one of the most fun nights of the tour. Lots of smiling lots of dancing.
What have you been listening to recently?
Lots of highlife music. Sam Cooke (Darling I Need You Now). Digable Planets made an appearance on the van speakers the other day while we were driving through Amsterdam.
What current music have you been listening to?
The new Tame Impala record is super dope.
What artist most excites you?
If you could collaborate with anyone who would it be?
I think it would be fun to work on a track with Pharrell. I love that Neptunes sound.
What are your touring must-haves?
Tape recorder, books, mascara, somebody back home to send love letters to.
Watch their latest music video, Keep You, below and snap up their latest album, Isles, right here.
Ok, so we guess you’ve heard? The V&A is currently showing their most popular and fastest selling show to date. Yes, of course you know. It’s dedicated to the enigmatic and visionary, David Bowie. Us Topshop girls love a good fashion and music exhibition and have been over the moon that more and more established galleries are getting in on the beauty and individuals behind so much amazing art that isn’t classically museum material (Margiela at Somerset House, Alexander McQueen at the MET, Chloe at Palais de Tokyo… need we say more?)
The V&A’s two star curators have sifted through Bowie’s personal archive of over 7,000 bits and pieces – okay, they’re much more important than that, rather signed records, lyrics and costumes – and have put together an extensive and comprehensive exhibition that overloads the senses.
Photography by Brian Duffy.
Whether you love him as the cabaret-performing suit wearing Thin White Duke or as the red-headed alien-like Ziggy Stardust, Bowie was undoubtedly a genius when it came to reinvention and the exhibition follows his many personas with real precision. Marvel at some of his craziest outfits (the red Kansai Yamamoto one above stars) or get a closer look at his creative mind. One of the pieces that tickled us particularly was a ’67 letter from his ex-manager stating, “I have now changed Davie’s name to David Bowie.” We can’t ever imagined the great Bowie known as Davie!
Still from The Man Who Fell to Earth.
Other highlights including an inspiration room that features the likes of Marlene Dietrich and Oscar Wilde as well as sketches he’s personally made for on stage outfits – our favourite is the surreal oversized tuxedo he wore to Saturday Night Live in ’79. There’s a nod to his absurd nature and his focus on pure performance with suggestions to the mime and kabuki he would do on stage as well as his acting career – Labyrinth, anyone?!
Whether Aladdin Sane is your dream Bowie or his starry turn in Sponge Bob Square Pants is your best version, this is an exhibition that’s worth fighting to get a ticket for.
Stevie Dance is one of those girls. Beautiful, stylish and endlessly talented, she’s got the world at her feet. So, who better than to kick start our TopshopAustralia Edited? The creative consultant and stylist, who calls New York home but was born and bred in Oz, will be taking over a section of our Gowings store in Sydney and Chapel Street in Melbourne with a guest edit of her favourite items. Dance currently has projects galore: Contributing Editor of Vogue Australia, Fashion Director of Pop and Creative Director of Shop Ghost and will this month be taking on yet another task. Dance is curating her most-loved pieces from the whole of Topshop and from 4th – 14th April, you’ll be able to find them in the stores above and snap them up yourselves!
We spoke with the multi-tasking creative and designer lover stylist here.
My earliest fashion memory is…
Insisting on wearing my long johns with leotards as my go to. I was heavily into Flash Dance.
Growing up I wanted to be…
A Dancer. A choreographer.
My all time favourite designers are…
Nicolas Ghesquière, Marques Almeida, and basics like James Perse, vintage Levi’s, & Acne.
The highlight of my career so far has to be…
Any time I am lucky enough to be on set in the middle of nowhere with the ones I love.
My fashion weakness is…
Dressing down. Vintage t-shirts.
If I could go back to any era, I’d love to live in…
We have a serious crush on Simone Rocha’s clothes! Ever since we first laid eyes on her laser cut skirts and see-through heeled brogues, we’ve been head over heels for her awkwardly girly aesthetic so when her perfectly cut Pepto-Bismol neoprene coat opened the show, it was love at first sight for AW13.
Walk This Way
Twin Magazine’s fashion editor – and Topshop style icon – Celestine Cooney was backstage to make sure the girls were preened and styled in Simone Rocha’s off-kilter way. Wearing a key-hole cut-out dress from Simone’s last collection and some rad Balenciaga boots, Celestine was was incredibly hands on talking through not just how the clothes should sit but how the models should be working them. “She’s not a lady! This girl is cool and confident,” said Celestine as she spoke to one of the models about their walk, “more angry!” It’s clear Celestine has a clear idea of the Simone-wearing-girl and she’s not a wallflower despite the bows she may wear in her hair.
Messy Hair Don’t Care
The hair look at Simone Rocha was a breath of fresh air. This season it’s been all about the slicked back, gel-heavy pony tails and we were happy to see something a little different in the form of a fizzy couldn’t-care-less bouffant. Stylist James Pecis backcombed the front of the hair into a scruffy quiff and folded the back locks into a bun-cum-ponytail that sprouted loose pieces of hair so it all looked like the remains of a “posh” salon hair-do the night before. It was in the same idea of hair that had already been partied in that the girls’ beauty was set: little face make-up, a dash of mascara and a touch of pinky balm on the lips.
On The Catwalk
Sat front row… It was a family affair with Simone’s very proud parents (her dad’s the designer John Rocha) sat front row with Louise Wilson who taught Simone on her Fashion MA at Central Saint Martins.
The collection in 5 words… Furry, shiny, granny, prim, pink!
Playlist… Girly vocals to upbeat tracks like ‘Walking Disaster’, all curated by her little bro Max Rocha. As you’ll see from her collection, the girls were anything but!
What we loved… The fabrications begged to be touched: the Pepto-Bismol pink dresses and co-ords at the start were made of neoprene and a cool wafer mesh, and there were sparkly tweeds, hand crochets and patent leather (the fabric of London Fashion Week for sure). There was a stiffness to the fabrics that was perfect for the ladylike silhouettes Simone sent down the cawtwalk.
Hero piece… A clear plastic tortoiseshell skirt in an A-line shape, giving a cheeky glimpse of legs underneath and her heeled velvet slippers!
Inspired by… Simone’s grannies. The collection was called ‘Respect Your Elders’ and the neat co-ordinated dresses and jackets, smart coats and granny bags paid tribute to the stylish ladies that influenced Simone growing up.
End notes… This was a collection that we were really looking forward to seeing. At a mere 26 years of age, Simone is a young talent that London can really be proud of. It may have been more ladylike than we’ve seen before but her crochet glasses, use of leopard faux fur and bowed veils were a reminder that Simone’s girl is still brimming with the off-kilter charm she’s making her own.
Re-watch the Simone Rocha AW13 show on Topshop.com, check out our live coverage of London Fashion Week over on our Twitter and keep coming back to Inside-Out for more news from Unique as well as all the NEWGEN talent showing at the Topshop Showspace!
J.W. Anderson is a man who does minimalism with a difference. He’s the hottest designer in London right now (if you haven’t already, make sure you check out his latest Topshop collaboration) and all the most important people from Carine Roitfeld to Cathy Horyn were sat front row with high expectations.
We hung out backstage to find the designer back to his old tricks once again, playing with his signature boy-meets-girl aesthetic that the fashion industry have come to praise him for.
Stylists, Models, Movers and Shakers
Stylist and Anderson’s right hand man, Benjamin Bruno, was very calm amongst the backstage madness exclaiming, “I’m just excited to see it all!” Us too, Bruno, us too!
No Make-up is Good Make-up
Legendary Val Garland from Streeters was behind the make-up for Jonathan’s show. Unlike Garland’s previous day’s work at the Vivienne Westwood show, that was all circus inspired and crazy shades of blue, she kept things to a complete minimal. Garland gave all the models a creamy dewy base, a strong boyish brow and simply left the rest looking natural.
Hair Stiff as a Board
Paul Hanlon had no qualms about transforming the models smooth locks into solid planks of hair that seemed to hover above the shoulders in straight lines. Our favourite moment was seeing the stylists holding the girls hair up in front of a piece of card and dousing it with endless cans of hair spray.
On the Catwalk
Front row… Alexa Chung rocking a JW x Topshop patent leather skirt, Tallulah Harlech in head-to-toe J.W.Anderson, Angela Scanlon, Daisy Lowe and the majority of the cool London massive!
The collection in 5 words… leather, slouch, boy, asymmetry, austere.
The girls on the catwalk… Topshop Unique girls Ashleigh and Julianna were back in the building!
Playlist… Bass heavy techno that wouldn’t have been a miss at a Berlin super club.
What we loved… Bold bands of bright colour strapped across white polo necks, the uptight, abstract shapes and the comic bright patterns.
Hero piece… The amazing slouchy leather tees with drawstring sleeves – too cool with a drainpipe jean!
Inspired by… “An examination of cacophonic chemistry.” Yeah, we didn’t know what that meant either but on explanation decided it was based around the idea of making dullness a little special by using shape and texture in an innovative way.
End notes… As we’ve come to expect from Jonathan, this was a conceptual collection, almost clinical in its approach to shape and cut (and the hospital gown dresses and nurse’s shoes emphasised the point!). When broken down it was chock full of amazing pieces we want to work into our own wardrobes.
Re-watch the J.W. Anderson AW13 show on Topshop.com, check out our live coverage of London Fashion Week over on our Twitter and keep coming back to Inside-Out for more news from Unique as well as all the NEWGEN talent showing at the Topshop Showspace!