L.A. Weekly's Detour Festival was held in the streets around City Hall last Saturday and bands were warming up on stages dubbed "The Hall of Justice Stage", "The Triforium Stage", and "The City Hall Stage." At the base of City Hall, DJs known as Paparazzi and Kid Lightning greeted early arrivals in the City Hall courtyard under grey skies and some mist.
That small marbled walled arena gives a royal setting to the sampling DJ culture, allowing it to hold court over the gloomy masses in motion. It had me wonder if taking pieces of what was so last century defines today's look and sound. I saw in and around the grounds concert wear that was a mix-and-match of accessories from previous decades: Green hippies with long hair and cell phones; Designer jeans that screamed the 70s; Blonds with 80s neon framed sunglasses; Post Punks wearing shirts with strategic tatters and rips.
It then made sense as I heard the opening bars of Micheal Jackson's "Thiller" move dancers from one industrial Gothic rave hit to another. Fashion from different decades are not being high-jacked, they are being sampled. Pop culture fashion buffet takes items to be worn as if everyone has been partying since 1999.
There were some original looks for a generation raised on text messaging, where sounds don't have to be heard live to be real. Electronic beats are the tribal calling of the Post-Daft-Punk-Pre-Gothic wearing black, fishnets, slightly ghostly, mixing with Victorian wear that finds romance in tragedy. They didn't rave until later, because after all, vampires only come out at night.