If there’s a song this week that opens with as powerful a line as CHVRCHES’ new single “Good Girls,” I have yet to hear it — it stopped me in my tracks and made want to listen again. It also gave me a crucial jolt of Monday energy, as all great CHVRCHES songs (as sung by the powerful Lauren Mayberry up top!) do. This, as it turns out, was critical as I made the (surprisingly long), multi-flight trek back from a weekend in Michigan. So, I’m resetting, unpacking and then repacking my bag — for an upstate media trip with Laphroaig this week! — as I work on the latest edition of The Style Guide In Brief, your music-menswear-craft beer guide to the latest and greatest of my three passions. My daily style blog, The Style Guide, churns forward as well, and if you want something else to read while listening to CHVRCHES, you can check out this recent newsletter entry on my favorite Scottish synth pop trio, or, of course, my work at Maxim and plenty of other places. Let’s get into it with renewed energy and spirit in mind, shall we??
What To Listen To This Week: “Good Girls” By CHVRCHES
As I said above, this song hit me with a jolt and lifted me up off the ground, in a way (as tends to happen at outstanding live shows by CHVRCHES, for instance — I wrote about one here). It’s a feeling that manages to translate through your headphones or Bluetooth speaker, incredibly enough, which is something I also appreciate. And most importantly of all, the latest from the Scottish synth pop group is a strong and decisive message, a takedown of misogynistic artists and the misogynistic music industry by lead singer Lauren Mayberry. The video is also, to put it mildly, futuristic and visually striking. To say it’s a powerful track is certainly an understatement. That it comes off an album titled “Screen Violence” is certainly fitting, too — look for that album to drop August 27th, then get ready to pack up and hit the road to see the band on tour this fall. Speaking of packing up…
What To Shop This Week: Filson Duffle Pack
Whenever I pack up to hit the road and see a favorite group like CHVRCHES in concert, I try to keep things as versatile and easy to pack (and wear) as possible. That generally means hard-wearing boots, comfortable stretch denim, a breathable T-shirt and buttondown shirts … all of which can be mixed and matched. But getting from point A to point B is another matter, especially when hopping on long-haul flights. To make it easy on myself, I look for a durable, rugged and compact bag, like the Filson Duffle Pack. As you look to get back out there and on the road yourself, an everyday carry essential like this one (available at Amazon Fashion’s East Dane) is the only way to go. Still with me? Let’s keep it rolling. And who’s thirsty?
What To Sip This Week: Widmer Brothers Hefeweizen
Happy hour is but a ways down the line today, but I already know what sort of beer you should be reaching for, so stock your fridge accordingly. One of the keys to summer imbibing is to ensure you’re sipping on one of the best light beers for the season, and if you want something that packs a flavorful punch, drinks easily and can be easily purchased for delivery via Drizly, it’s the Widmer Brothers Hefeweizen (out of Oregon) that you want (it’s a wheat ale with floral and citrus notes). There’s no telling if it’s available at your favorite concert venue or music festival, but as we plot a return to seeing live shows again, it’s a darn fine beer to have handy as you listen from the comfort of home. I'll drink to that, no questions asked.
The Final Pick: Blundstone 1911 Chelsea Boots
With your new favorite beer by your side and a new song to kick off happy hour later, how about we plan more for the open road? Before you can pack up your Filson Duffle Pack, you need the right pair of footwear to get you around with style and plenty of comfort in mind. If you’re looking to pack light (my blog has plenty of tips on how to dress for a road trip), then minimizing the footwear you bring can help lighten the load considerably. That’s where the remarkable, tough and yet lightweight, comfortable Blundstone 1911 Chelsea Boots come into play. They’re practically the perfect pair of travel boots, made to slip on and off going through security. They’re also some of the best men’s boots to wear to a festival or a concert, with a durable exterior (especially leather Blundstone boots) and a springy rubber sole.
If listening to the new CHVRCHES song or reading about, say, the best men’s boots to wear to a festival isn’t enough to encourage you to hit the road again, then I don’t know what to tell you. That being said, it’s all about the process, and if you start small (say, by buying the Filson Duffle Pack and planning your road trip packing list), you’ll get back to basics in no time. Follow these tips, read my style blog and you might even get ahead of the curve. Alright, then. I’ve got a new track from CHVRCHES to go play. Enjoy the day and let’s get to work!