A lot of this started because of growing irritation at the way alternative cultures were were being appropriated by and into the mainstream. Erstwhile un-mainstream movements such as skate, punk, rock, hip hop and more general ‘street’ culture (among so many others) were taken as mere looks and gimmicks rather than the embodiments of forms of thought that they were.
At this point and for the sake of clear understanding and future reference, it would be useful to explain what is mean by “mainstream” vs “alternative” here. By “mainstream” one should understand any movement or style that doesn’t fall into the “alternative” or “counter” category. Mainstream styles and movements are accepted without drawing much attention. They carry no obvious visible social drawbacks and in opposition to so-called “alternative” and “counter” counterparts do not expose concerned parties to any kind of social disadvantage, prejudice and stereotyping and in extreme cases, violence – whether they are expressed or not.
In short, “mainstream” movements and styles demand no personal engagement from those who choose to adopt them. It isn’t a criticism but it must be noted that there is nothing at stake with mainstream movements since they require virtually no social, moral or ethical engagement from those who adopt them. And to a certain extent we all do.
TAC’s point of view is that the above appropriation is the symptom of a much wider problem. We are living in an age of much fakeness, falsehood and mediocrity (to put it bluntly) and though it might be amusing for all of two seconds, it gets extremely boring and it often feels like we’re regressing instead of progressing.
The current climate has given rise to a new kind of alternative culture that TAC refers to and wants to champion – one of ‘realness’. Being what you are. Having your own tastes and preferences rather than just jumping on the latest bandwagon because everyone else is. Engaging with people and things on a tangible level rather than because you think it’ll look good on social media. In short, trying to get to and live in some kind of truth.
Simply put, TAC doesn’t think it’s enough to be stylish on the outside, we also want to have stylish minds and ways of thinking.
Because there comes a point where we have to take a hard cold look at things and put them out there without any sugarcoating. If not to redress the balance, at least for the sake of self-respect and sanity.