I’ve been a fan of Cibo Matto since probably around the time they released “Stereotype A” in 1999, medical when I was 11. They were exactly the kind of role-models a young whippersnapper like me was looking for: two women who were complete bosses, stuff making their own beats, buy viagra rapping, using weird samples, hooking up with John Lennon’s kid, remixing for Yoko Ono, and jamming with the Beastie Boys.
Unfortunately, as they were attractive Japanese women in New York, they were put in the box of quirky novelty band. Oh, look, it’s cute girls talking about chickens! By the time “Stereotype A” came around, an album that used a full band and explored bossa nova, funk, and hip-hop, the nails on the novelty box had been hammered in and no one thought about the message they were trying to create to combat that, about how the media here stereotypes Asian women.
They broke up at the turn of the century, but I was able to see Miho with her bossa nova outfit Smokey & Miho and also solo at the Philadelphia Museum of Art with her New Optimism experimental outfit.
They’ve gotten back together for a new tour, which I was amazingly lucky to be able to see. Sean Lennon even made an experience. They played at the Brooklyn Bowl, probably the most successful manifestation of the combination of music, bowling, and drinking.
I had a hard time deciding what to wear. I have a really ridiculous instinct that makes me not want to wear vintage or anything approaching a Williamsburg aesthetic when I go to Brooklyn or the Northern Liberties or– ok, you can obviously see what word I am trying to avoid using. I have a fear of being judged on a level playing field amongst aficionados of putting-a-bird-on-it. I don’t know if this was a valid fear considering the audience was mainly gross old white dudes with much younger Asian girlfriends.
I wanted to embody the spirit of eclecticism inherent in a night of Cibo Matto music, without looking exactly like all the other people there. This is also a bad habit of mine, the gross individualism.
The fabulous dress, matching gold skirt, and bow are by Corazon Caramela. It is like in Harry Potter where the wand chooses the wizard. THIS DRESS CHOSE ME. It reveals my inner workings better than a dress with an x-ray would. The dress fits me perfectly because it has a shirred panel in the back. It’s lined with white leopard print fabric and has an asymmetrical ruffled hem, which looks good with leggings or a skirt under it. The skirt that came with it is this amazing gold lame three-tiered ruffled piece of business, with an elastic waist that allows me ROOM FOR EATIN’. It is one of my favorite pieces of clothing, ever. The two pieces work really well as separates, too, to make any outfit completely outlandish!
The shoes are knockoff Converse from Burlington Coat Factory, because I don’t even know if Converse makes metallic goodness. The top under the dress is Forever21+. The belt is my prized lion belt that I bought at the Punk Rock Flea Market.
The ladies of Cibo Matto looked FRESH2DEATH. Bright jumpsuits and geometric earrings, big neon belts. Killin’ me!
Cibo Matto were always a huge inspiration to me and it was amazing to see them together again! They’re bringing back passionate, sometimes confrontational, and always unique music while it seems everyone around them is stagnating. Based on what I heard at the show, I’m really excited for their new album!