Fashion doesn’t just exist in a vacuum, especially not for a brand like Balenciaga. From out-of-the-box collaborations to ventures into the Metaverse to, now, made-for-Balenciaga playlists with music collectives like Acid Arab, the brand continues to prove to be a powerhouse in dictating what’s cool and what’s next in culture at large.
It’s never just about fashion for Balenciaga. With music comes merch, and none is doing it quite as on-the-pulse as Balenciaga’s roving curation of Apple Music playlists (Balenciaga is an official curator on Apple Music, because, of course). From Gvasalia’s own personal playlist to picks by German industrial band Rammstein, French pop singer Aya Nakamura, RuPaul — no introduction needed — and Acid Arab, Balenciaga’s connection with artists regardless of genre has only increased in breadth with every collection; every errant collaboration.
Straight off of the pulsating dance floors of Paris’ infamous Chez Moune nightclub, Acid Arab is a duo collective made up of DJs Guido Minisky and Hervé Carvalho, whose mission is to hold space for Arab culture — through sounds and snippets from North Africa, Lebanon, Egypt, Turkey and more — in the world of electronic music. Acid Arab’s playlist for Balenciaga certainly holds up to the collective’s working philosophy, with hand-picked tunes by the likes of Moroccan hairdresser-organ player Abdou El Omari and Azu Tiwaline, with roots from the Sahara and El Djerid region in the south of Tunisia, featured. If it’s an education you’re after, Acid Arab’s curated mix certainly delivers.
Acid Arab Merch by Balenciaga:
Acid Arab’s four-piece unisex Balenciaga merch collection, priced from HK$6,300, consists of a sweatshirt, sweatpants, a long-sleeved T-shirt and a zippered hoodie with the music collective’s branding seemingly spray-painted on the chest, plus Arabic script along the sleeves and legs. Cast in a doldrum-shattering shade of highlighter yellow, this is a literal you-can’t-miss-it capsule. So bright it might glow in the dark.