The Show Goes On: Seeing Local Natives in Pittsburgh

All smiles for Local Natives — and enjoying a neat area of Pittsburgh! Trucker Jacket and 505C Denim by Levi’s. Jack in Indigo Star Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Henley by Pistol Lake. Roma Messenger by Brothers Leather Supply. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Explorer’s Cap by Huckberry. Glasses by Frameri

There are certain items that pop up in your news feed and make you stop and take notice. Late this past year, a simple Tweet caught my eye and eventually spurred my latest Style Guide road trip. Yes, the announcement that one of my favorite bands, California indie rockers Local Natives, had extended their Sunlit Youth tour into 2017 was enough to shake up my day — and make me pull out my calendar. If you recall, I hit the road to Providence last fall to see them — it was such a stirring show, I knew I had to catch ’em again. So, that’s how I ended up on a Pittsburgh-bound Greyhound bus this past weekend with my favorite #menswear in tow and another excellent live show on my mind. From a December trek to Baltimore to this past weekend’s adventure — to name but a couple — I’m truly lucky to be able to take in great music and great cities in style. Now, my packing list was quite different than my recent spring break trip to Florida, but I had my winter packing routine down pat — and luckily, I hauled plenty of late winter travel essentials for a crisp weekend. That all of this gear fit nicely into my Owen and Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender and my Brothers Leather Supply Roma Messenger was just an added bonus (Pro tip: Here’s another stylish weekender bag for your travels).

Beckett Simonon

Rock-inspired gear with cold weather in mind. Trucker Jacket by Levi’s. Jack in Indigo Star Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Lawrence Boots by Sutro Footwear. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Gloves by Grifter Company.

It was with Local Natives’ excellent third album, “Sunlit Youth,” spinning in my headphones that I hit the road — my last Style Guide trip took me to New Haven to see Young the Giant, and I knew I’d need similar cold-weather gear this time around. For a very early Saturday bus trip down to Pennsylvania, I layered up accordingly, starting with a classic Pistol Lake henley in a unique shade of Antique White. I topped it off with my reliable-as-ever Taylor Stitch Jack in Indigo Star Shirt and a seasonally appropriate Levi’s Trucker Jacket in a spring-friendly light wash. Because temperatures dipped into the high 30s in parts of the day, I still needed my  Johnston & Murphy Faux Shearling Aviator (last seen on this blog in a weekend trip to upstate New York).

Greats

On the footwear front, my pick for stomping around Pittsburgh and checking out Stage AE on Saturday night just had to be the cool and crisp Lawrence Boot from Sutro Footwear. The jodhpur style looked sleek beneath my Levi’s 505C denim and proved comfortable for a full day of wear. If you want to dress in rock-inspired style for your next concert, I’d recommend you look into Sutro Footwear men’s boots and other similarly edgy menswear moves. Oh, and if you want more travel style tips for men, peruse this site when you get the chance.

Sharp style essentials for a Pittsburgh Saturday. Trucker Jacket and 505C Denim by Levi’s. Jack in Indigo Star Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Henley by Pistol Lake. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Roma Messenger by Brothers Leather Supply.

Of course, staying on time is critical for any road trip — particularly when it came to hitting up Nicholas Coffee & Tea and trekking through downtown Pittsburgh. In this instance, that meant I drafted my vintage-inspired Timex + Todd Snyder Military Watch into duty once again. It’s versatile, it’s subtly stylish and it’s tough enough to stand up to a rock show — perfect for this trip. Fully caffeinated, the real exploration of Pittsburgh rolled on, from trekking across the iconic Roberto Clemente Bridge to checking out the incredibly well-designed, unique Mattress Factory Museum and making a pit stop for excellent craft brews at the rustic, home-y Allegheny City Brewing — it’s a bit of a hole-in-the-wall location with a food truck out front and delicious brews (like the Deutchstown Brown) being poured inside. The early evening also took me to renowned Pittsburgh craft beer bar Beerhead — all the while rocking my comfortable, durable Lawrence Boots from Sutro Footwear and prepping for a stellar show, of course.

Now, to be fair … I’d seen Local Natives three times on this tour previously, but to say that lowered my expectations at all … is quite far from the truth. In fact, it made me look forward to this show even more! When a band brings as much energy and passion to the stage as Local Natives does — from blissful opener “Past Lives” through to classic closing track “Who Knows Who Cares” —  it’s a treat the entire time. Seriously, I can’t recommend this band enough. There’s nothing like their show — from start to finish, majestic lights, great sound and a heck of a set list, The show included deep cut “Mt. Washington” (off of their excellent 2013 album “Hummingbird”) and another crowd-pleaser, “Ceilings” — that one’s a personal favorite. . They harkened back to their first Pittsburgh show with fan favorite “Airplanes,” and broke out a show-stopping rendition of “Breakers” to go along with a rousing version of “Fountain of Youth” — what a band!

They also wove in a soul-stirring version of “You and I” — not to mention a beautiful performance of “Colombia,” honoring vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Kelcey Ayer’s mother. Of course, “Who Knows Who Cares” brought the house down, too — this is a band that really can do no wrong! There’s nothing quite like the feeling of knowing your favorite songs are coming … and being blown away by them all the same.

Taking on a chilly day on the Pittsburgh waterfront. Anorak by Fisher + Baker. Cable-knit sweater and garment-dyed chinos by Dockers. Flannel shirt by Frank and Oak. Pahoa Chukkas by OluKai. Red Wing Leather Chronograph by Timex x Todd Snyder. Explorer’s Cap by Huckberry. Glasses by Frameri.

As seems to be the case after a great live show, I was plenty tired — but there was no time to waste in terms of getting around Pittsburgh in style. To combat weather that was both chilly and  a bit rainy, my functional, well-made and supremely durable Fisher + Baker Anorak proved exceptionally tough. The simple black colorway was sleek and city-ready and the Ventile cotton waterproof shell more than stood up to the elements — the hood was a nice touch on a blustery day, too. It layered easily over both a nautical-inspired Dockers cable-knit sweater. I paired the combo with  classic-yet-slim Dockers garment-dyed chinos and a cozy red-and-blue plaid flannel shirt from the master menswear purveyors at Frank and Oak. The next time you need style that can take you from brunch to the park — as I did when checking out Point State Park — I’d recommend you team versatile staples with sturdy footwear. On this particular Sunday, my OluKai Pahoa Chukkas filled that part of the equation quite nicely, blending a bit of Hawaii cool with a sturdy chukka silhouette and burnished black leather. For rugged style that also fit the bill, I had to break out my Timex + Todd Snyder Red Wing Leather Chronograph,With a busy day on tap in Pittsburgh, my menswear picks proved crucial.

It was time to head back to NYC too soon, though  — I did so with plenty of amazing memories from a brief-yet-incredible Pittsburgh trip spinning in my head. The chance to see one of my favorite bands really is something I can never pass up — even if it means hopping on a bus to get there. And the opportunity to explore a neat city with a burgeoning arts scene is always welcomed — as is the chance to try out a few local brews and check out a new music venue! But to reiterate — if you want to listen to music that makes you think, try out Local Natives. Oh, and see them live as soon as you can — just be sure to pack your favorite travel essentials for the journey. Join us tomorrow for a new #OOTD series entry, and in the meantime — stay stylish!

-Beau

Frank & Oak

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Style Pick of the Week: JackThreads Munro Leather Biker Jacket

Editor’s note: Expect these posts weekly detailing one standout item coveted by yours truly. Sometimes, these fit within budgetary restrictions and other times, they’re expensive splurges worth saving for. For more Wish List items from Beau, head here, and to see other Style Picks, head here.

Possibly your new favorite leather jacket? Munro Leather Biker Jacket by JackThreads. Scarf by S.N.S. Herning. 505C Denim by Levi's. Kimbo Chelsea Boots also by JackThreads. Red Wing Leather Watch by Timex x Todd Snyder. Glasses by Frameri.

Possibly your new favorite leather jacket? Munro Leather Biker Jacket by JackThreads. Scarf by S.N.S. Herning. 505C Denim by Levi’s. Kimbo Chelsea Boots also by JackThreads. Red Wing Leather Watch by Timex x Todd Snyder. Glasses by Frameri.

If you’ve ticked through your list of classic men’s style essentials as of late — from tough winter gloves to a classic Oxford, dark denim and stylish leather boots — maybe, you’ve found your wardrobe is missing just a bit of … edge. Coming from a writer who loves his outerwear, that’s what I found as of late. And while there’s something to be said for classic pieces like an authentic U.S. Navy peacoat and even a maritime-inspired wool jacket,  adding that edge can be a neat way to switch things up no matter the season. Folks, that’s where the JackThreads Munro Leather Biker enters the picture this week on The Style Guide.  It’s another stellar addition to an ever-expanding menswear line that should be on your radar ASAP. A leather biker jacket is an edgy-yet-classic piece, worn by the likes of Marlon Brando decades ago, popularized by legendary rockers The Ramones and found through the present day on the likes of The Killers’ Brandon Flowers. It really is among just a few menswear pieces that have true staying power. And lucky for all of us, JackThreads has taken that classic approach and put its own affordable and still-stylish spin on it. I’ve had the chance to rock the Munro Leather Biker around Brooklyn these past few weeks, with pleasing results. Although I love my rugged denim jacket and my slim topcoat as much as the next guy, it just might be my new favorite piece of outerwear — not least because of the slightly edge vibe and excellent fit.

Just one way to wear this jacket. Classic Henley by Todd Snyder. 505C Denim by Levi's. Kimbo Chelsea Boots also by JackThreads. Ranger Gloves by Grifter Company.

Just one way to wear this jacket. Classic Henley by Todd Snyder. 505C Denim by Levi’s. Kimbo Chelsea Boots also by JackThreads. Ranger Gloves by Grifter Company.

JackThreads, as is the brand’s custom, keeps things simple and straightforward with a bit of characteristic flair in the form of a slanted chest pocket. It looks and wears slightly thinner than the beefy leather jackets of years past, but that’s not a bad thing. In fact, it makes it perfect for layering over other casual weekend pieces (my reliable-as-ever Todd Snyder x Champion Pocket Sweatshirt among them). It also adds a bit of flair when worn more simply — say, with a striped henley and the concert-ready Levi’s 505C denim.  Of course, there might not be a more rock-and-roll combo than Chelsea boots and a biker jacket, so it’s also worth trying that move when styled up for Saturday night — or when dressing for your next concert in general. Now, a leather biker jacket is certainly a bold move — it’s one thing to wear this jacket out to your favorite local pub, and it’s another to show up to your next meeting wearing it. So, I’d say tread carefully — agreed? Rest assured though, it can work as a blazer substitute in the right setting — worn with slim navy trousers and a blue Oxford, for example. And for under $250, you’re at least saving some coin compared to buying a more expensive jacket from a legacy brand. So, that’s also a plus. With those style tips in mind, I’d say you should pick up the Munro Leather Biker and get ready to rock. (Cue fist bump, air guitar).

Cheers!

-Beau

Beckett Simonon

Standout style: Rocking out at Panorama 2016

Editor’s note: Start here for personal style #menswear coverage.

The heat didn't stop me from rocking out in style. Linen-blend shirt by Old Navy. Silm Light Mercer Denim by Mott & Bow. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Millbrook Sunglasses by Steven Alan Optical. Mod Watch from the Timex x Todd Snyder collab.

The heat didn’t stop me from rocking out in style. Linen-blend shirt by Old Navy. Silm Light Mercer Denim by Mott & Bow. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Millbrook Sunglasses by Steven Alan Optical. Mod Watch from the Timex x Todd Snyder collab.

Here at The Style Guide, I’m pretty thankful to get to write about what I love every week. But it’s even better when I get to combine my passions into one post, as I did this weekend when I headed to the first-ever Panorama festival in NYC rocking some great men’s style gear and rocking out to excellent tunes along the way. Panorama was a unique merger of music, art and technology, curated by the same team behind Coachella – and Saturday’s lineup, featuring luminaries like Kendrick Lamar, Sufjan Stevens and The National, was stellar. The festival blended the buzzing atmosphere with some premium food and beverage curated in part by the great folks at Eater.com, too.And of course, the day presented the perfect opportunity for me to combine those aforementioned passions into one heck of an afternoon (although if you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you’re aware of that!). Now, attending an outdoor festival in the heat of summer might seem like the opportune time to ditch decorum and dress to stay cool, but yours truly thinks just the opposite — bear with me.

Of note, stepping out on Saturday put me right smack-dab in the middle of some very hot weather — it was sunny, beautiful and in the 90s here in the Big Apple.  Even still, I was glad to be there as Panorama took over Randall’s Island, the site of this summer’s Governors Ball festival, (a similarly spectacular weekend). It was exciting to know that a quick subway trip brought me mere feet from (among others), The National, supremely talented purveyors of emotionally substantive music … but more on that in a second. Just know that for now, if you get the chance to see them, it’s a must. And if you manage to get as close as I somehow did, it’ll be even more astounding (just check out this video here, for one!).

Join Frank & Oak Elevate - Enjoy FREE Shipping, Cashback + more at Frank + Oak! Try it now for 90 days, risk free!To tackle the festival in style, I reached for a new pair of Thursday Boots — they’re a big Style Guide favorite for the way they blend price, quality and styling potential, and I tested out the rugged-refined Natural Diplomat Boot this weekend. It’s made from durable Horween leather that provided just the right amount of toughness, edge and style, plus excellent grip and plenty of durability for playing a little air guitar during a high-voltage afternoon set from British rockers Foals. Of course, they had to be able to fight for a spot in the crowd during a visually stunning show by Sufjan Stevens — and before that, I did plenty of rocking out to The National, one of my all-time favorite bands and the group behind one of my all-time favorite albums (that would be Boxer …. or perhaps it’s Trouble Will Find Me …. or maybe Alligator…). The band’s incredible, emotional show came after a blisteringly hot day out and about, and it’s a good thing I had apparel that stood up to the test. Challenges with the heat started early, even during a high-energy, engaging set from British duo Oh Wonder to kick off the day (note that if you dig what you hear from them, they’re working on a new album!).

Ready for a full day of rocking out. Linen-Blend Shirt by Old Navy. Slim Light Mercer Denim by Mott & Bow. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Troubadour Socks by Richer Poorer. Hudson Belt by Arcade Belts. Adventure Log by Word Notebooks. Wristband by Panorama NYC.

Ready for a full day of rocking out. Linen-Blend Shirt by Old Navy. Slim Light Mercer Denim by Mott & Bow. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Troubadour Socks by Richer Poorer. Hudson Belt by Arcade Belts. Adventure Log by Word Notebooks. Wristband by Panorama NYC.

Attending a great music festival often feels like multiple shows within one large, high-energy show — it’s fitting then, that my style blended multiple elements. To fight the heat (and yes, I’m aware I chose boots and denim), a linen-blend short-sleeve shirt courtesy of Old Navy worked quite well. Although the Navy color is now sold out, the white Flax Linen option on the site would be a reliable stand-in at your next music festival, with a much-needed linen blend and utilitarian chest pockets. It really was crucial to have versatile style, as the day shifted from a eclectic, mellow vibes of Oh Wonder  to a high-energy set put on Daughter. The quickly changing scenery called for durable accessories, too — no busted watches or sunglasses left behind here. Plus, my Tread for Men Traveler Sunscreen was a big help in protecting me from the sun.
Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

Chief among the rest of those accessories was a new personal favorite, the outstanding Timex x Todd Snyder Mod Watch. It reliably updates a vintage style for the modern man. I accentuated that crisp watch with a fun-to-wear pair of Millbrook sunglasses via Steven Alan Optical, which clock in at an agreeable price on top of great looks ($165). Certainly, every cent helps when cooling down with some nice refreshments and powering through a day of great shows.

Keeping track of time during the day with the Mod Watch from the Timex x Todd Snyder collab. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Slim Light Mercer Denim by Mott & Bow.

Keeping track of time during the day with the Mod Watch from the Timex x Todd Snyder collab. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Slim Light Mercer Denim by Mott & Bow.

Lest we think the day was all about the big-ticket items (and bands), small touches really do go a long way in completing an outfit, such as the Hudson Belt from Arcade Belt Co. It’s made with stretchy, comfortable and durable navy smartweave fabric, and the color worked well alongside my socks, the lightweight, breathable, teal-and-grey color-blocked Troubadour from the team at Richer Poorer. Those socks paired with my boots for an added touch of comfort, and that was crucial — it felt like a long run-up into the evening, but it really was worth it.

That brings us back, once again, to The National. While I certainly looked forward to dressing for the day in style and checking out other great acts, I’d been looking forward even more to seeing the hallowed indie rockers return (relatively close) to their home turf. Seeing them two years ago at Calvin College back in my home state of Michigan was, to be quite honest, a lifechanging show (right up there with seeing Lucius at Daryl’s House Club in upstate New York earlier this year). And this time around, The National absolutely didn’t disappoint. Although the entire set was stellar, early renditions of “Don’t Swallow the Cap” and “Afraid of Everyone” were huge crowd-pleasers, as was an uptempo take on “Sea of Love” off of the acclaimed Trouble Will Find Me. Being that close to the stage for those songs was epic, seriously. The Dessner brothers are one of the tightest guitar duos around, and the Devendorf brothers reliably carry the rhythm section, too. What more can you ask for?

They’ve got a discography that’s so deep and versatile, an hour isn’t nearly enough — even at a festival.  A soul-stirring rendition of “Bloodbuzz Ohio” played well off of two new songs, “The Day I Die” and “Find A Way” fit right in with the rest of the band’s live set, which also managed to work in “England” off of High Violet. The variety in their setlist means you might hear your favorite track at an unexpected time, and it means you might have to wait a bit longer, too. “Fake Empire” was distinctive and well-done, cueing up the crowd for an intense, loud version of the classic “Mr. November” (just ask the folks next to me how much I enjoyed that one). Although Mr. Berninger stayed on stage for that song, he made his way into the crowd for “Terrible Love” — I’m surprised the fans let him go! It was nothing short of emotionally stirring and incredible, probably worthy of a full blog post in its own right. It was a two-year wait to see them, but I can only hope less time goes by before I see them again.

If you get the chance to check them out at one of the many festivals they tend to play during the summer, please do. The same goes for their friend and a top-billed act in his own right, Sufjan Stevens. It was time to put away those sunglasses (and grab another round), as he powered through a visually stunning set — both The National & Sufjan could definitely play for twice as long, what with their deep discographies and high-energy stage shows. Of course, an act like Kendrick Lamar is a huge crowd-pleaser and puts on a high-energy stage show of his own, which drew by far the largest crowds of the day.

It was a heck of a day that really was packed top-to-bottom — bands like Oh Wonder and Foals also rounded out the day nicely with afternoon sets that fit with the festival’s more eclectic vibe. Attendance felt a bit light at times, but it provided the chance to grab some prime real estate during killer sets by some of my favorite acts (particularly, as we all know…. The National). And gear like my durable Thursday Boots Natural Diplomat Boot and the Timex x Todd Snyder Mod Watch was really crucial to taking on such a hot and busy day in style. It was such an honor and privilege to be able to see a renowned act like The National, and the rest of the lineup definitely didn’t disappoint. We’ll see if Panorama sticks around next year, but if they continue to curate an eclectic lineup packed with big names and solid variety, there’s a great chance it will be — and I’ll be there with my best menswear to rock out!

‘Til the next show,

-Beau

Huckberry

The Friday Read: Panorama 2016, The Levi’s 505C and Radio Kangol

Editor’s note: Expect these posts once a week on Fridays — consider this a jumpstart on reading for your weekend downtime. Expect a mix of style and non-style content. For more entries, click here.  

It’s quite tough to believe it’s already Friday around these parts — it genuinely seems like New York Fashion Week: Men’s just wrapped, and it also feels as if I was just in Michigan to attend my good friend Matt’s wedding (in style, of course). However, quick weekend trips tend to call for a quick turnaround time, and a busy week thereafter. Did you get the chance to catch all the content we pumped out this week at The Style Guide?  To recap — that includes a new suggestion for styling twill pants, brought to you by Savane. Here’s a hint: Take the brand’s Premium Flex Twill Pant and match them up with other dependable style staples; seriously, it’s all there. Or perhaps you’re in the mood to do some shopping? We’ve got you covered there, too — grab one of the best men’s dive watches via this site’s latest Online Shopping Picks post.  And lastly, let’s look ahead to the weekend — I’m quite excited to check out the first-ever Panorama festival this Saturday in NYC. It’s a cultural mash-up of art, technology and music, and that means some interesting exhibits, delicious food and drink and a bevy of great tunes from stellar artists — namely, personal favorites like The National, Sufjan Stevens and Oh Wonder, capped off by a heck of a headliner in Kendrick Lamar. Of course, I’m very much looking forward to getting back to Randall’s Island, site of this year’s Governors Ball music festival, and bringing along some great #menswear for the ride. You can check out my Instagram for a full rundown of the day’s festivities in real time, and you can also follow along on Twitter. In the meantime, let’s plug in and look back on the week in #menswear.

Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

  • Speaking of that lauded hashtag, Fashion Beans covers eight men’s street style legends to know — like, right now. It’s a great list, packed with plenty of style inspiration for anyone interested in men’s style.
  • If you’ve got a couple grand to drop, take a look at the newest watch from Piaget, the super-sharp and crisp Piaget Polo S watch — it’s the pricier answer to the best men’s dive watches covered here.
  • If you need a new pair of jeans (and who doesn’t?), take a look at the very cool, very retro and yet very of-the-moment denim just launched by Levi’s — the Levi’s 505C is an update on an iconic, yet under-the-radar, style worn by rock stars and pop culture icons alike for decades. The good news for you is that the style comes in both a fresh light wash and a classic dark wash, among other options. And if I didn’t know any better, I’d tell you to keep your eyes peeled on Instagram this weekend for some music festival content surrounding these jeans (wink, wink).
  • And speaking of brands that sit at the unique intersection of music and heritage — lovers of viral tunes are now set with a plethora of constantly updated global indie music, new from Radio Kangol. It’s an effort launched this week by the global headwear & lifestyle brand Kangol, and it uses a well-curated, deep series of intelligent-minded music labels to stream tracks that run the gamut from hip-hop to reggae to dance. It’s all in line with the brand’s connections to the music industry and its place on the heads of style and hip-hop icons alike — give it a listen here.

Last but not least….

  • Herschel Supply is teaming up with creative platform BHW to launch a series of ApexKnit backpacks that make use of a densely woven, high-tensile yarn to provide a hint of stretch and performance in the brand’s classic backpack silhouette; these backpacks are sleek, city-ready and commuter-friendly.
  • Speaking of great backpacks — grab one (or five) stylish backpacks for summer travel via my latest post on The Manual — it won’t let you down, promise!

That’s all for now — stay tuned for more style content from Panorama over on Instagram, and have a (very) stylish weekend in the meantime,

-Beau