There’s a lot of pavement outside the gig bootleg style shirts doing the rounds right now, but I think it’s something that’s still effective in the hands of those who overstand the cultural touchstones they’re playing with Nervous Juvenile’s name indicates that they really like Morrissey (as a shirt last year attested to), but the quality of their gear is tremendous too — custom created and USA-made to make it more than just a novelty. Anyone who makes some basketball shirts based on a Discharge album artwork is doing things right. The latest one includes a tee themed on cult Japanese hardcore band MOBS’ Diabolism EP, ripstop track pants with plaid bum flaps (and the nerve juve label evokes another classic brand from the past) and a Kate Bush long-sleeve that strikes an appealing balance between earnest tribute and a busy 1998 lapse-in-taste. Those reference points keep coming correct.
In other Japanese-affiliated, tough to understand for a foreigner news, the latest issue of Popeye commemorates its 40th anniversary by coming with a replica of its first issue from summer 1976. There are alterations: just as I believe the original issue had all BEAMS ads (I could be wrong though), the replica has contemporary BEAMS ads in their place. There are some incredible skate, surf and sportswear related photo essays and it’s a solid accompaniment to W. David Marx’s Ametora. The Japanese love of collegiate tees and sweats seems to originate here, as do the swathes of monthly, (Popeye was spawned from 1975’s Made in U.S.A. Catalog) impeccably presented catalogue style publications that followed. The International Sneaker Catalog pages in this issue also act as a starting pistol of sorts for the most influential, discerning marketplace for athletic footwear on the planet.