Fifty years ago, Angry Young Men prowled London. Plus ça change. Anger is once again the driving force of today’s youth as Ennio Capasa sees it, and his mandate at Costume National is to channel a young man’s feelings. On his mood board backstage was Mick Jagger’s mugshot. The boys who took the catwalk today, to a thudding Clinic beat, could’ve been his latter-day inheritors, down to the shags. As it turns out, many of them were plucked from the London streets.
If Capasa once skewed more decorative, he’s long since burned off the fat. A scattering of lapin-felt fedoras inspired by David Bowie’s lent a glamorous touch, but on the whole the collection was tough, leathery, unembellished: skinny skin pants and zippy biker jackets, cropped tailoring and double-faced black and white coats.
It didn’t feel exactly revolutionary, but it won the guys’ endorsement, which just about closes the loop. The boys say, ‘Wow, I want that,'” Capasa said backstage. The last one of them was Capasa’s 19-year-old son, a psychology student in London. The pull of Britannia is strong, it seems, and probing the angry depths is shaping up to be a family affair.