When our annual Spring Style spectacular rolls around, we are pumped to indulge our fashion obsession in a more focused way than just intra-office debates about whose idea it was to rock desert boots first (mine!). The FADER is blessed with an amazing style team—Chioma Nnadi, Mobolaji Dawodu and Erin Hansen—whose tireless creative hustle and general pervasive awesomeness drove this issue’s meticulous selection of leathered man-bags and the binoculars style blowout shot in Santo Dominigo, Dominican Republic. Dawodu and frequent FADER contributor/award-collecting photojournalist Peter van Agtmael flew to the DR to kick it with some people they just, like, found on the street there, and though they neglected my eleventh-hour request for a bottle of mama juana (Dominican tree bark booze! Do not sleep!), they did return with a bangingly prescient look-see of the shorts, skirts and vests we’re fiending for as the sun finally shows its lovely mug.
FADER style comes from the same beehive as our music coverage: we are down for new-new, brain-busting fashions the world over, whether via designers—like the erudite downtowner Patrik Ervell, who creates classic menswear in super-unique fabrics—or folks far off the style mainline, like the Banda Jimenez, whose traditional crisp ensembles and handmade textiles pervade John Francis Peters’ photo essay shot in Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca, Mexico. The group came to us via wanderlusty back cover star Zach Condon, aka revered, clear-voiced songwriter Beirut, who collaborated with the ensemble for his bombastic and brass-laden new EP, March of the Zapotec. Matthew Schnipper delved into Condon’s back catalog and brain, uncovering an inquisitive dude whose endless interest in traditional folk-collaboration has previously taken him to the sounds of France and Eastern Europe, but has never immersed him into a culture as much as with this recording.
Meanwhile our front cover star, the mystic British-Pakistani chanteuse Natasha Khan, bka Bat for Lashes, is known for her personal style—can I just point out she is wearing a WOLF MASK as a beret? AMAZING—but we love her most for the voluminous songs she dredges from the deepest caverns of her heart. Writer Kim Taylor Bennett hung out with Khan in Brighton and London, where they discussed her gorgeous second album, but technically she also went on some sort of super intense spirit journey into Khan’s fantastical mindzone. In the piece, Khan is likened to “an unbridled unicorn,” an idea that has become our mid-year resolution because, let’s face it, who doesn’t aspire to be an unbridled unicorn? That or someone who can shoot lightning bolts from their hands. Either way, we are working hard and stealthily, as ever, to bring you the MAGIC.
JULIANNE ESCOBEDO SHEPHERD