Top 10 Upcoming Music Acts in 2014

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Music and style are two topics closely related and often fashion is influenced by music and vice versa. To stay with our favourite topic of suits, think of the Rat Pack, Frank Sinatra, Charlie Watts from the Rolling Stones (probably the world's most stylish drummer) or to use a more contemporary example, Justin Timberlake.

2013 was a fruitful year, music-wise: AFI, Alter Bridge, Clutch, Arctic Monkeys…These and many other artists showed us why we love music through their originality and creativity. No matter which genre you belong to, if any - there was something for everyone. Keeping this in mind, we wanted to share with you what we feel are some of the best upcoming music acts in the year 2014.

1. Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings

For those of you already familiar with the work of the great Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, no introduction is necessary. After successfully beating cancer, Sharon is back and better than ever. Their new single Stranger to my Happiness is a perfect representation of their new album Give the People What They Want, which was released on January 14th, 2014. The tracks included in the album encompass everything this band is known for: unrestrained soul, funk, ballads and Jones’ strong vocals.

Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga

Whether or not you like what Lady Gaga's got going on, her vocal range is unquestionable. So is Tony Bennett's. These two artists may not seem like an obvious match, but what they’ve created together is brave, new and vintage at the same time. It's a classical jazz album, but a refreshing one, too. Don't miss out on a whole lot of fun with Lady Gaga, Mr. Bennett and their Cheek to Cheek album set to release in late 2014.

Jeremy Messersmith

Jeremy Messersmith is not new to the music business, but he has yet to achieve the recognition he deserves. Heart Murmurs is his fifth album, and the one that will most likely launch his career to the stars. It deals with the very familiar topics of loving and losing, but in a completely different and original way. Its release date is set for February 4th, 2014 when we will all be able to enjoy the work of this young and talented artist.

Broken Bells

This band is a product of collaboration between two artists who have hoped to reenact the old disco ages. Well, that’s exactly what they did – in a modern, almost futuristic fashion. After the Disco will be released on February 4th, 2014, following the release of their single Holding on for Life.

Dengue Fever

Founded in 2001, this rock band is inspired by the Cambodian culture and has released full eight studio albums to this day. One of their top motivations are their fans, which is why they started their own label company (Tuk Tuk) in order to continue making the music everybody loves. On the Pledge Music website you can be a part of the crowd funding and support the release of their new album. By doing so, you will gain access to a lot more than their album so we suggest you check it out. I've seen them live here in HCMC/Vietnam and they are a great live band too, so check them out if you can (they tour the US quite frequently).

Pledge Music:

These Wild Plains

If you’re on the search for a new rock band in the year 2014, These Wild Plains are the definite right choice. The focus is set to the guitar solos and strong vocals, which combined remind us of the 70’s rock scene. If you want to hear what they sound like, check out their Waves single released in August 2013. We really hope the album will be announced shortly, as nothing has yet been confirmed (nor denied!).

Johnny Cash

Now here’s a name everyone’s heard of. You must be wondering why we would include Mr. Cash in a 2014 album list, right? As it turns out, Out Among the Stars is his lost album from the 80’s sessions with producer Billy Sherrill. Even though he’s no longer with us, he still managed to surprise us. We are looking forward to the never before heard material by the legend that is Johnny Cash.

Neneh Cherry

If you’re a hard-core hip hop scene fan then you will most likely love Neneh Cherry, a Swedish singer-songwriter, rapper and DJ. Her style is versatile and refreshing yet simple, with a dark but inspiring beat. After almost 16 years of retirement, she is back with the new album Blank Project, set to release on February 14th. We can hardly wait to see what she came up with this time, after such a long absence from the music industry. Welcome back!

Cloud Nothings

This indie-rock band from Cleveland has been active since 2009, but it wasn’t until their Cloud Nothings album was released that they enjoyed critical acclaim. Their fresh, upbeat, friendly and fun musical style made them stand out from the other rock bands, which is always welcome in the music industry. Their latest album will be released sometime in 2014 and we can’t wait to hear it.


Elbow is an alternative rock band from England that has been active since 1997. Since then, they’ve released 5 albums with a sixth on the way. The title of the latest album will be All At Once, with the exact release date still unknown. Guy Garvey, the lead singer of the band, described the upcoming album as “old-school with celebratory parts”. He also explained there will be less tempo changes midway through the songs, as they are going for a slightly different sound this time. Considering how successful they’ve been in the past, we have no doubt they will amaze us once again.

So there you have it – our (expected) top 10 music acts of 2014! All of these artists have something that distinguishes them from the rest, which is why we felt everyone should keep a close eye on them. Don’t be surprised when some of them (hopefully all) achieve international success sometime this following year.

What are you guys listening to? Anything we should watch out for? Feel free to share in the comments.

Indochino Spring Collection 2014

Sunday, February 23, 2014

In good time for spring 2014, Indochino just released a number of new suits and shirts. We got 10 new suits, all available from $529 as two-piece suits and $619 as three-piece suits incl. vest. There are also a number of new chambray shirts in all possible colours, including green, purple and orange. and a couple of very nice micro stripes and micro check shirts available from $99. The Indochino Traveling Tailor is also on the road again and currently in Los Angeles, so stop by for a chance to see the new products in person (and get a free shirt if you buy a suit). 

Check them here:
New Suits & New Shirts

The fabrics used for the suits are no specifically spring fabrics like last year (we got linen and cotton blends), but mostly 100% wool fabrics (120s) suitable for all season. You'll be disappointed if you have waited for cotton and linen suits, I assume we will get them for the summer collection in a few months.

Indochino Spring 2014 - A Selection

The Steel Blue Micro Pattern suit is one of the pieces that stands out for me. A nice and subtle color with a nice texture, very versatile and just different enough from the usual navy blue and grey suits. Will definitely look great on a nice spring day. 

The Olive Sharkskin Suit pictured further below is very nice as well. I really like how it looks in the lookbook shot I used as a first image on this article - the patterns used for the product shot below look completely random to me, to be honest.

Steel Blue Micro Pattern - $529
Too many patterns here, but cool suit - $529
Gray Sky Chambray Shirt - $99
I actually think what we got now is just the beginning of the Spring Collection, with a couple of now missing items to be introduced soon. I'm hoping for some nice blazers, maybe some new light trench coats and perhaps a couple of cool accessories such as linen ties. Not sure if co-founder and Indochino design mastermind Heikal Gani was still involved in this collection, but from what I hear he has now left the company is pursuing his own business ideas (check out his furniture store if you make it to Shanghai). It will be interesting to see what design focus will be from now on, Heikal Gani was certainly a vital aspect for Indochino's great collections in the past and had a lot of fresh ideas.

The campaign photography is interesting again, they used a grainy effect on the photos (too make them look more organic & analogue, I assume) and Indochino has started to use a different way of choosing their models. We used to get mostly very slim, clean shaven young guys and there is a clear tendency to choose more mature men with facial hair now.

Models used in 2013

And the models 2014

Ask a Lady: A modern woman's perspective on male body hair

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Ask a Lady is a new monthly column on Indochino Review

A bit of background

Women love men with great haircuts. See how crazy we all are for Leonardo Dicaprio as The Great Gatsby? This is why most men think that when they figure out the perfect hairdo, they have nothing to worry about. And for the average male out there, this seems to be true. The majority of women do not expect men to be particularly bothered with body hair grooming. A few years ago, as long as a man has had a shower and wore clean clothes, his appearance would be considered decent. But then, a shift happened. 

It must have been 1994, around the time that Mark Simpson used the term “Metrosexual” for the first time, in one of his articles for The Independent. Simpson had identified a category of men who were single, interested in fashion and with a high income that they were willing to invest on their appearance. Naturally, the fashion industry has spotted this target group even earlier on. And the crazy marketing started, to convince men that they need -no, that they have the right to use!- all the beauty products that the ladies used. And since men are not immune to marketing, many of them started using specialized body products to improve their appearance and increase their sex appeal. Many started experimenting with their body hair, trying out a bit of trimming and some of them taking the leap to complete waxing. But how do women feel about it all?

Women's perspective

The face
We do hate it when our man takes more time to get ready than we do. This is a fact. But even the most laid-back ladies out there do appreciate a well-groomed lad. No matter how much your girlfriend insists that she likes your natural approach to hair -aka tangled locks and hairy back- there is something irresistible about a man in a well-fitted suit with a neat haircut and a well-shaped beard. Women do acknowledge and appreciate the effort, when they see it. After all, we have been expected to pluck our eyebrows for ages! So, if you feel the urge to let your beard grow, be warned that you should tame it occasionally. And if it is a mustache you crave, then do yourself a favor and get a comb, a good moisturizer and some wax. 

The neck
Let's move downwards, to the neck. If you are so hairy, that the back of your neck is covered with hair and you cannot tell where your facial hair stops and chest hair begins, you do need an intervention. Waxing is the best solution. It does hurt -as thousands of women can assure you- but it does not itch when your hair grows back. Of course, you can always choose to stay natural, but keep in mind this wonderful silk shirt that you just bought can end up looking cheap, rather than classy, if there is a bunch of hair coming out of the collar. 

Chest and Back
When it comes to the back area, most women feel the same way: not desirable. Of course, a stray hair here and there is much different than a duvet-like layer. If you look like a wet bear when getting out of the shower, you might want to consider waxing. As for the chest area, women are much more forgiving. So,chest hair is ok, back hair is a no-no. It does not make sense and it is not natural, but it is a matter of aesthetics. Period.

Limbs and in-betweens
As for legs and arms, the vast majority of women have no issues with hair that grows there. So you can leave your poor limbs alone and be confident that it won't cost you a date. When it comes to armpits, most women find that if they are completely shaved, they look a bit too feminine and prefer a trimmed look for their man. Keep in mind though, that there are women who love men that are shaved all-over, like male models or athletes. If your date or partner belongs to this category, she will probably let you know with a hint or two. And since we talk about legs, let's talk about what hangs in-between them as well. One word: trimming. It keeps sweating under control but it does not give you that porn star look, that might be a bit overwhelming. 

In short, both men and women are being pressured by the fashion industry to follow specific trends and this includes body hair grooming. If you decide to play this game, do what you would do with clothes trends: do not try and adopt a style that you cannot pull of, because you will feel ridiculous instead of gorgeous and that is definitely not attractive. 

Indochino Deal Alert: Chinese New Year Promo - Suits from $399

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Get up to $100 off with Indochino's New Year Sale 2014

Chinese New Year is a huge celebration in SE Asia, here in Vietnam life comes to a standstill for 2 weeks and most shops are closed - I am sure the situation is very similar in China itself. Those who can afford it return to their home cities and villages and spend a few days catching up with their relatives (and eating and drinking as much as they can). Many retailers use the event to announce a sale and luckily for us, Indochino is no different.

Indochino Navy Premium - now $499 instead of $649

Essential Suits are not very often on sale, so the $50 discount is certainly welcome and eases the pain of the recent price increases and taxes a little bit. You can save even more ($150) on Indochino's premium suits which are now on sale for just $499 - and that's actually a very tempting price, I have to say. 

Here are the coupon codes. Use ESSENTIAL for the Essential Suits and PREMIUM for the Premium Suits at checkout. The offer expires on February 10th, 2014. 

5 Simple Ways to Cure a Hangover

Monday, February 3, 2014

Don't we all know it - a few glasses to much, maybe an unlucky mix of wine, beer and the last shots you barely remember and should have never had. It happens to everyone of us every once in a while, no matter how much we promise not to drink too much on the day after. Here is what you can do to fix yourself.