Artists making an effort to increase the sustainability of their brands is a growing trend in the event and entertainment industries; one example of this is Bostonian production duo Warung and their upcycled apparel.
The group’s upstart clothing line/record label, Beyond The Gates, cuts down on air and water pollution, landfill use, and even greenhouse gas emissions as well as on expenses and overhead by upcycling the apparel itself. Using thrifted clothes—or clothes sent in by fans for custom orders—Warung screen prints their logo by hand, breathing life into old apparel pieces, reducing the waste of discarded clothing, removing the need to produce new/raw materials,
Warung is also donating portions of the profit from Beyond The Gates merchandise to those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, with 10% going to Boston’s Artist Relief Fund (providing aid to local artists whose work and income have been impacted) and 5% going to the NPO Kiva (providing the financial overhead for those in developing countries to start their own businesses which will provide for their families and help their communities grow).
By raising donations through the sale of upcycled goods, Warung is fighting two crises at once: the environmental crisis, and the financial crisis brought on by COVID-19. Aaron Hopkins, one half of Warung, took the time to explain the inspiration behind Beyond The Gates’ upcycled apparel exclusively to Grit Daily, saying:
“We’ve all seen and been guilty of this whole concept of ‘throwaway culture,’ where once something isn’t so new and shiny any more we tend to toss and replace it. As fun as it is to always be getting new things, it’s not the best for the environment or anyone’s bank accounts. We thought the upcycling was a cool way to refresh something you already own or purchase an item that may be new to you but that doesn’t require the creation of a new item from scratch.”Aaron Hopkins
Warung have come together with fellow Bostonian Producer/DJ Devon James to release the two-track EP, Madness, on Friday, September 4th, via W&O Street Tracks. The hypnotic melodic house release is as good of a listen for a virtual dance party as it is for some introspective afternoon decompression.
“Madness” is a chic house track that is intricately layered and blissfully dark. The male vocal sample reverberates throughout the mix while the gentle synth melodies intertwine with each other, occupying the high end while a funky bassline and far out bass synths take up the low end.
“Lucidity” is a pumping tech-house track that could very well be the sonic representation of Miami. The rhythm does not let up, with the energetic percussion laid over an addicting bassline. This B-side from the first time collaborators would be many artists’ lead single, so we hope we hear more from the three Bostonians soon.