British fashion magazines have been talking about “new rave” (or nu-rave) since early last year in outlandish glossies like Super Super and Pop. The genre’s name is a little misleading, however, as it shares only small parts of the “old rave” aesthetic and none of the beats, which is why the movement has been generally confined to magazines about clothes, not about music. Related to dance-punk and no wave, new rave scenesters don day-glo, glitter paint, glowsticks and visors, among other de rigeur old rave accessories, but are noticeably lacking in the trouser width department.
This Sunday, Klaxons will hit Lee’s Palace (9 p.m. / 19+) for what is largely a “testing of the waters” in Canada for new rave, which has gotten little attention outside of the UK. While the British scene draws many of its devotees from former members of London’s old rave community, New Rave UK Interscope may find this feat challenging in Toronto, as “old rave” never really went away in our city like it has in London. In the capital, they have “rave clubs” like Fabric that are really nothing like raves at all, kind of like new rave is nothing like old rave except the blacklights. The question is not whether the show will do well, nay, it is
likely to sell out sold out. The question is whether “new rave” fashion will ever blossom here.
If you want to check out some real “old rave” raves this weekend, don’t miss It Goes On and On (Thursday), Up In Yer Grill (Friday) or Abstract007 + John B (Saturday).
There is some feeling that Klaxons actually despise the term nu-rave, and that they hate it when people think “glowsticks” and “drugs” at their shows. Take note of the letter on his hand in this video, though: it seems to be the drug of choice for the scene whose genesis is attributed to a band whose name begins with the same letter. Enjoy!
Questionable photo of Klaxons and some bloke by Daniel Heaf on Flickr.