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Somewhere you should go… Dean Chalkley’s The New Faces screening and party, The Book Club

thenewfaces

March 8th sees The Book Club pay tribute to Mod culture, with a night of vintage tunes and a screening of Dean Chalkley’s The New Faces.

The late 1950s and early 60s Mod movement saw a wave of British youngsters embrace African-American soul and blues music, and styling themselves in sharp suits and angular shift dresses. But the subjects of photographer Chalkley’s short film are a gang of youthful 20-somethings who have bought Mod culture into the 21st century with a studied authenticity and photogenic panache. Chalkley first noticed the groovy crew swinging away at his DJ night Shake!, and was intrigued by their dapper style and slick dance moves. United by their love of the music and style of Mod culture, the gang were first shot by Chalkley back in 2010 and became the focus of his photographic exhibition at The Book Club. Chalkley was unsure what to call the show but it was the Modfather himself Paul Weller, who suggested the name The New Faces.

Now Chalkley returns to TBC to screen a 20-minute film all about his favourite new Mods. The screening promises to be an “hypnotic visual experience”, as well as a cultural document of the enduring Mod movement. But the celebrations don’t end there, as Chalkley and members of the The New Faces collective will be around to spin a selection of rare soul, rhythm & blues, ska, Latin and boogaloo. And you can be sure to look forward to some nifty dance moves: “You should see them dance,” Chalkley has said of the modern day Mods, “they look good and they’ve got the moves!” No doubt then that The New Faces will have you boogie-ing on down till the early hours of the morning. (Words: Stephanie Soh) 

 

Entry: Free, 6pm-2am (7:30pm screening). Visit www.wearetbc.com for more info.

2 comments

  • There is something inherently wrong when a scene with its roots, ideals & dictionary definition as ‘working class’ flaunts a it’s pompous middle class poster boys as indicative of its ‘Faces’. These charlatans live in homes bought by their Daddy, have double barrel surnames and grew up with nannies and public school privileges; hardly authentic. Some of their naive comments make a girl wince! When I have the luxury of working part time in retail or flogging tat online in between photo shoots and spunking my trust fund on overpriced rare 45’s please pinch me! Hardly “clean living under difficult circumstances”. Welcome to post-modern irony!

    “That’s what being in the working class is all about — how to get out of it.” – Neville Kenneth Wran

  • Not sure how qualified with the purists I am to comment. I wouldn’t refer to myself as a Mod(ernist) these days purely out of respect to the original genesis of the 60’s movement but more as an individual who appreciates the aesthetics and attitude of the movement sartorially, its ideals and roots and caught the last wave of it still in ‘motion’.

    The last time Mod had a definitive postmodern resurgence was in my teens through Brit Pop and an era I began to express that appreciation in its evolved casual form with the introduction of Adidas and anoraks to my wardrobe alongside the renewed popularity for Harringtons and Wallabees on the indie scene by bands such as The Verve and Blur. I later progressed to the more period look; possibly as its more timeless and perhaps even out of boredom through the last ten yrs of sub cultural offerings, or total lack of. Mod stopped moving forward as we knew it and that is surely integral to modernism by definition.

    I would not label those that do not play original vinyl or use laptops today as “tw*ts” or call myself “elitist”, “snobbish” or “special” as these fellows do in Dean’s film, especially if they are privileged: that would clearly be throwing stones in glass houses! Mod was working class as one even points out himself ironically!

    I found it counter intuitive that a rather opinionated character in the film bangs on about “fakes” on the scene. On what merit? Anyone doing Modernism strictly to a 60’s code without a generous pinch of salt is surely deluded and what’s good for the goose should be fair game for the gander right? Leave em’ be boys! Vanity can blind a man of all his senses if you shun the realities of the 21st century in a self satisfied little group. If only what came out of their mouths was as charming as the content of their record box/wardrobe.

    In summery a bit more humility would of shed them in a much better light. Crying shame really. No wonder so many find the scene so odious and stagnant these days. The film’s protagonists undercurrent of pride is totally unearned here, not that pride is ever attractive regardless. Lets hope these not so New Faces grow up & snap out of it

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