BlackBook Premiere: Journey Across NYC With Golden Suits’ New ‘Swimming In ‘99’ Video

When a person endures in one year a rat infestation, a break-up, and a barren bank account, you’re tempted to say, “yeah, yeah, so what?” But when it happens to a musician? Well, the whole tumultuous 365 days are rolled into a 10-song solo album featuring a new, surprisingly sunny tune you play on repeat, whose video resembles a watch commercial. Such is the case with BlackBook‘s exclusive lyric video premiere of the song “Swimming In ‘99” from next month’s release of Fred Nicolaus’s new, namesake album.

As a 13-year member of the folk-electronic duo Department Of Eagles, Nicolaus sets out on his own under the band name Golden Suits, and, in the new video from the eponymous album, brings us along on his journey across New York, from the corner bodega to a fortune teller, with each spot chronicled in Google Maps.

Why the two watches? Each is a bookend of the year that inspired the album, with one bought at its beginning, and the other at its end.

World, say hello to “Swimming In ’99.”

Golden Suits official site; Follow Bonnie on Twitter here.

This Year in Aspirational, Iced-Out Time Pieces

This week marked the 20th anniversary of the Salon International de Haute Horlogerie in Geneva, an annual powwow of luxury watch-makers from across the world. Even though most people haven’t been willing to spend $10,000 on a watch for over a year now, the crowd in Geneva was in high spirits after a surprisingly strong holiday season, according to the New York Times. And, man, do they have some nutty ideas about what a four to five-figure watch should look like. Here, some photos of the best aspirational watches from this year’s Salon, or four ridiculous time pieces that cost as much as your car.

(‘DiggThis’) But before we get to the watches, just another reminder that the Salon was in Switzerland, so of course traditional garb, complete with betasseled epaulets and lots of leather, was part of the equation.

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There’s more to the Montblanc Metamorphosis (“Two watches, one face”) than meets the eye. It looks just like a classically elegant hours-and-minutes setup, but then the top indicators splits in half and disappear under the dial revealing a whole new face with a chronograph. Party trick!

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Thin was really in this year at the Salon, and Piaget’s Altiplano was the thinnest self-winding watch in the show, sitting 2.55 mm above your wrist.

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It seems like the only good reason not to have an ultra-thin watch would be if you wanted to get a fat one full of diamonds, right? You might even be able to tell the time once your eyes adjust to all the shimmering. Richard Mille brought his award-winning RM19 tourbillon “Celtic Knot” watch back to the Salon, but with more diamonds this year than before!

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Trippiest idea of the Salon goes to Van Cleef & Arpels for the “Pont des Amoureux” watch; we call it the PDA time piece. There are no hands, just a little minute man and hour woman that meet in the middle of a diamond-encrusted bridge on your wrist every hour, make out for a minute and then walk back to their sides and start over. Literally no idea what time it is.

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Neighborhood Watch

This month, Diesel released a collection of timepieces inspired by a Back to the Future-style amalgam of past, present, and future. There’s one with a yellow crystal face and gunmetal case, another with a silver leather cuff. Our personal favorite, pictured left, boasts an LED display, which, of course, tells time but also flashes “DIESEL.” It’s futuristic-retro, to be sure. And in the words of one Dr. Emmett Brown, “Don’t worry. As long as you hit that wire with the connecting hook at precisely 88mph the instant the lightning strikes the tower… ”

Neighborhood Watch

This month, Diesel released a collection of timepieces inspired by a Back to the Future-style amalgam of past, present, and future. There’s one with a yellow crystal face and gunmetal case, another with a silver leather cuff. Our personal favorite, pictured left, boasts an LED display, which, of course, tells time but also flashes “DIESEL.” It’s futuristic-retro, to be sure. And in the words of one Dr. Emmett Brown, “Don’t worry. As long as you hit that wire with the connecting hook at precisely 88mph the instant the lightning strikes the tower… ”

Anti Bellum?

imageRyan Bonilla and Philip Feng, founders of Bellum Classics, are fighting a war. Say the timepiece techies, “This war we battle is the war for creative freedom.” Call to arms aside, they’ve come up with their own spin on bling, creating made-to-order watches by pairing vintage timepieces—from the ’40s through the ’80s—with redesigned bands and various add-ons. Interesting, maybe. Tacky, probably. Judge for yourself here.