Top positive review
20 people found this helpful
on 20 May 2003
This book is a must for anyone interested in the casual culture from its inception in the late 70's to the modern day. It predominantly centres on the clothes and music of the periods concerned, and describes how the style has evolved, putting it into context with the skinhead, two-tone movement and mod revival which coincided with its early beginnings.
Facsimile reproductions of the original Face article from 1983 by Kevin Sampson and copies of influential fanzine "The End" are teamed with stories of sourcing, appropriating and wearing casual clothing in the early days. Illustrated throughout, with 16 pages of colour photographs, I found it compulsive reading, and was particularly pleased to see mention of Patrick cagoules and Benetton rugby shirts (although I recall them being labelled as "tennis shirts"). As a man who spent his first giro on a pair of Diadora Pat Cash's and his first YTS money on a Pringle, the book certainly struck a chord.
The one observation I would make is that it centres in the main on the formation and early days of the casual movement, and whilst acknowledging that there has been a resurgence of casuals in recent times, the dismissive phrase of one contributor of "have Hackett, will throw plastic chairs anywhere in Europe" and the chapter "Close Island" may suggest some of the sympathies of the author.
In short, it is an A - Z of the casual era from Slazenger to Stone Island, and I would recommend this to anyone interested in the fashions and music of the last 25 years.