This body of work portrays a group of young post Internet ‘Modernists’, or Mods as they are commonly known. Initially Tomas McGrath was the first of the group that came to my attention whilst I was DJing in a club. I immediately realized that he and latterly his friends represented something very special, it was an explosive and an evolution of a culture. They were (and still are) extremely passionate about their chosen route through life. Not activists in the conventional sense (no placards or sit-ins) but they are activists in style and firmly grasp the heritage of the past whilst actually presenting themselves in a totally contemporary way swimming against the tide of mediocrity. At times they tread a solitary path but collectively they revel a movement that’s full of life and does not show any sign of abating.
2012, BW, 22mins
The New Faces steps inside the minds of three young men captured in the enthrallment of a culture that they have fondly devoted themselves to. We are privy to their refreshingly honest, personal and polarised views, rooted in the ideology of a Modernist culture.
DIRECTOR AND PRODUCER Dean Chalkley
EDITOR Natalie Strachan
CAST Tomas McGrath, Jamie Parr & Scott Simpson
“I thought the Lads did good, I thought that they put it over in a nutshell… …I found it very refreshing to see New Faces coming up through the ranks”–Jo Wallace, DJ
In basement clubs they gather, immaculately dressed, checking out the detail of each other’s clothing, carrying a box of sought-after seven-inch singles, ready to move their feet. They are not ‘modernists’ in the literal sense, certainly, but neither are they purely nostalgic for times past. They do not abhor technology or just sit around wishing they could go and see The Small Faces. They love the internet, as it makes getting the things they want so much easier: the late 50’s/early-’60s sounds they spin, that speak to them in a way that no other music does, about their feelings, about being young in 2010. And the clothes that make them sharper than anyone else, and help express who they really are.
There are no strict rules as to what they should or shouldn’t like, can or cannot do Some of them prefer brogues, some of them loafers. Some of their number love scooters, some of them hate scooters. Some dress the way they do, proudly, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, while others tone it down for the jobs they have to do. Some of them are working class, some middle class, some upper class. The true common ground is that all of them are dissatisfied with the frivolous nature of so much modern youth culture – with people who dip into many different things, but never truly obsess, never believe in anything.
Because these are people who do believe. They love dancing all night because it puts them in their own little world. And they spend every last penny they make on music and clothes, obsessing over every last detail of their jackets, hunting down forgotten singles whatever the cost. It is all about the effort, all about commitment to a way of life. Meet The New Faces… - Hamish MacBain
04 March 2010 – 29 April 2010
The Book Club, London, UK
29 July 2010 – 02 August 2010