Now as I said in My Bliss Picks post, I probably am not playing in Tribe next year…but alas, I do have eyes…and an opinion. And like any opinionated woman, I feel the need to share those opinions with anyone who cares to listen. Since you’re here reading these words, I’m going to assume you are, thankfully, interested in what I have to say.
When I realised Tribe was doing an entire band filled with Fancy Indian costumes a few months ago I became irrationally excited. I love Fancy Indian as a traditional mas character (blame the Taino in me) and the image I conjured in my mind of a sea of floor length war bonnets and breastplates was too much for me, cyah deal.
At the actual presentation though, I was happy to see such a variation in Fancy Indian interpretations. Here are my top picks IF I were playing in Tribe 2014.
Hawkeye by Solange Shaw Gopaul
Solange strikes again. This time with a super sexy offering sporting the recently popular ‘spider’ style bikini bottom. Granted it’s an unforgiving style, but Solange’s section in Tribe is usually private (probably for that exact reason) and will probably attract the bessest of the bessest things. I also love the colour combination of green, white and beige, since it’s a bit different from the usual vibrant colour combinations. It all works really well together. If I were playing with Tribe this would be my first option, though I’m curious as to how this colour combination would work with my complexion. Nevertheless, looking forward to seeing this on the road.
Edit: Only now seeing the bottom piece on the backline. Uhhm…LOVE. I love a print so it’s really great to see it integrated on what is normally just a plain spandex panty. This is a great alternative as well to the spider style bottom piece I originally thought was for BL as well. Sigh, Solange, you never cease to wow me with the subtlest of design choices.
Tribal Warrior by Monique Nobrega
Oh yes. For anyone who has paid attention to mas since 2004 (which was literally the first year I really started paying attention to adult mas) you would get the reference here to Tribe’s section in Poison 2004. In a way, maybe this should have been in Bliss’s presentation since it is a literal nod to the costume that started it all. The orange & yellow colour combo is vibrant and beautiful, I love the bodywear and the cut on the frontline bra. I do love the backline as well though. All in all it is the perfect section and I think every masquerader will be happy with the options afforded them in Tribal Warrior. Close second for me in terms of favourite.
Rain Dancer by Monique Nobrega
Rain Dancer is a beautiful, different costume. I love the drama of the excessive fringe juxtaposed with the simplicity of the bronze bikini below. Also…LOVE a mohawk headpiece. LOVE. I saw some comments that fringe often poses a problem on the road (for wining purposes nah) so that may be the only downside.
Mohican by Valmiki Maharaj
Had to give a shout out to Valmiki for this Mohican offering. ‘Dripping in gold’ is all I kept thinking during the presentation while Greer pranced her butt off in this amazing frontline costume. I love the fact that Val incorporated the ethnic print feather cutouts throughout the backpack – it’s subtle detail that I think really adds to the overall effect. I personally wouldn’t play in a yellow costume because of my complexion, but lucky be the ones who can sport this sexy costume on the road next year.
I have a few overall comments on Tribe that I think apply to the band’s progression over the last few years. One of my friends/co-workers just called me to talk about costumes and she made a comment along the lines of ‘The waistbands though Ceola!’ to which I promptly replied ‘Waistbands? What waistbands?’. Hardy har har. No but really…while I personally don’t mind a decorated panty…there are sooooooo many people who want/need one to maintain a sense of modesty and decorum. Not everyone is Sian ‘The Body’ Macintosh.
I really appreciate the build your costume style that Tribe adopted a few years now…where you can make your costume as simple or as elaborate as you care to. On the downside of this…I’ve found that more and more sections basically have the same foundation costume for backline and frontline, while the only real differentiation between the two comes when you start adding backpacks and huge headpieces. I prefer a totally different costume all together for frontline, personally.
All in all I’m happy with Tribe’s 2014 presentation. I know some people are harping on and on about it being disappointing but I honestly think it’s because Tribe has reached a point where expectations of them are usually super high. Let’s be real, there’s only so much you can do with BBF mas. If you want something truly out of the box then there is K2K (another band I haven’t heard much about and am looking forward to seeing for 2014).
Looking forward to next year Carnival.