Live Concert Photography: CZARINA with Bunny X and Turbo Goth at The Knitting Factory 11/7/18
Perhaps best known as a designer and creative director of footwear and accessory company Ivy Kirzhener New York, Vero Faye’s footwear line can claim a long list of celebrity clientele including Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez, Shakira, Kesha, Lily Collins, Cassie, Jamie Chung and Tori Kelly. Interestingly, Kaye has long been passionate about music and design, frequently feeling creatively torn between the two. While studying at the Fashion Institute of Technology, Faye founded and fronted the progressive metal band AIKOSTAR, which played at a number of renowned venues across town, including CBGB’s, The Continental, Don Hill’s, The Knitting Factory, Galapagos Art Space, North 6 and others. The band released their full-length debut in 2006, and shorty after Kaye took a break from music to focus on a burgeoning career as a footwear designer.
Despite achieving quite a bit of success in fashion, Kaye decided to take a break from design to focus on music yet again with her solo recording project CZARINA. CZARINA finds Kaye musically reinventing herself as the project’s sound is centered around a subtly modern take on 80s synth-based goth, synth pop and ambient electronica paired with heartfelt melodies and soaring vocal hooks.
Kaye along with a backing band headlined a night of synth pop and goth at The Knitting Factory that featured local acts Bunny X and Turbo Goth (who played at this year’s MONDO.NYC Festival earlier this year). Interestingly, CZARINA’s set focused on the project’s full-length debut Painted Holograms, which was also released last month. Much like album single from “Blaze,” the material is frequently brooding yet swooning pop featuring arpeggiated synths, thumping beats, scorching guitar solos — and while nodding at John Carpenter soundtracks, the live material possessed rousingly anthemic hooks. Check out photos from the show below.
Bunny X is a New York-based synth pop duo comprised of Abigail Gordon and Mary Hanley. Collaborating with songwriters and producers Disco Success‘ Conrad Kaneshiro and GGGAMESSS‘ Miles Maxwell, the duo is largely inspired by Italo Disco — although live I heard elements of Pet Shop Boys and early Madonna in their sound.
Turbo Goth, comprised of Manila, Philippines-born, New York-based duo Sarah Gaugler (vocals) and Paolo Peralta (guitar, sampler, electronics) formed back in 2008 and at the time, they were only the only electronic rock act in their homeland at the time. Sonically speaking their sound features distorted bass synths, thumping beats and scorching guitars paired with ethereal vocals — and in some way, their live sound reminded me of VOWWS and Nine Inch Nails. After playing across their homeland and a number of festivals across Asia, the duo made an attention-grabbing SXSW appearance in 2014 that inspired them to relocate to gain a broader audiences, eventually landing in New York. Since then Turbo Goth has been a regular presence in local clubs — while working on their sophomore album.