The Genteel
April 23, 2019
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Anna Sui Spring Summer 2012 Collection (Source: fashiongonerogue.com).
(Source: style.com)

It's 1978 and my sister is squalling to life right before the dawn of a new decade. In a low-rise walk-up, Gina drops the needle onto the first record and puts on her outfit for the night. She's going dancing, baby, and there's nothing that can stop her. Thirty-some years later, Anna Sui will be inspired by an act of kismet to create a S/S 2012 collection that channels the beating disco heart of that era. But with a twist. The collection will be married to the cut and style of the 1940s. Pantsuits mingle with fishnet veils, platform heels sit below hourglass figures and the colours are vivid but not gaudy - the perfect match.  

As I flipped through the photographs of the Anna Sui collection, I started to concoct a playlist that got my heart beating as fast as the clothing on the runway. It distinctively has a disco beat to it.

  1. Bee Gees - Tragedy: You can't mention disco without thinking of the Bee Gees. However, that doesn't mean one goes directly for the obvious choice. Gina of 1978, puts on her black silk pantsuit, printed with delicate white flowers, to this rousing number that begins with the best dance intro - a synthesized harpsichord melody. And it just gets better from there. She ties her hair back with a delicate kerchief, a perfect capsule for her goldenrod curls to spill from. She tops it off with a red lipstick that matches her skin tone perfectly as she sings along.
  1. (Source: style.com)
  2. Scissor Sisters - Invisible Light: The Scissor Sisters, disco's modern day flag bearers, bring the joy of dance music into weird realms with Invisible Light. And the weirdness extends to the official video. Lady Gaga has nothing on them. Religious imagery, genuine nudity (no latex breasts missing nipples here), nubile men chopping wood, hypnotism, fish out of water … the musical equivalent to what Anna Sui's collection evokes. A hybrid of the old and new that creates something utterly brilliant.
  1. Boney M - Rasputin: Going back to the 1970s for a moment, we have Boney M's most well-known single, "Rasputin". My eastern European bias aside, this song is brilliant and it gets your ass moving. Gina, my one-dimensional creation, rocks out to this tune everywhere she hears it.  
  2. The Rapture - How Deep Is Your Love:
  3. Everything old is new. This is not your mama's Bee Gees tune (we already covered that in the first choice). This is gorgeously layered punk-electronica that would fit well in any 1970s mix (like this one!). Gina doesn't know what to do with herself when she hears this song. That dirty beat doesn't belong in that decade, but the percussion certainly does. 
  4. Miami Horror - I Look To You: On a more mellow note - mellow? In disco?! - comes Miami Horror, whose "I Look To You" could be found spinning in a club, a lounge or in my iPod. A chilled out disco-house groove throws this song into ambient territory, the perfect relaxing number for Gina after a night of long dancing on too-high platforms.
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