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When most people think of a classic ‘80s punk and post punk scene, they generally think of New York, London, or maybe D.C. Rarely does Louisville get thrown into the mix. And yet, Kentucky’s largest city actually boasted one of the most influential music scenes of that era—a true underground revolution. Louisville’s original punk band No Fun led the charge followed by Squirrel Bait and Slint. And sure, that name might fly under the radar today, but their unique look and sound helped pave the way for the grunge explosion of the early 1990s. To celebrate these underground heroes, and anyone who creates music purely for the love of it, Levi’s® Vintage Clothing has tapped the mid-80s Louisville music scene as inspiration for its Fall/Winter 2020 collection.



“Louisville had such an interesting music scene in the 1980s and was very influential, but few people in the mainstream knew about it. The bands had a classic look incorporating Levi’s® truckers and 501®s and the music often had gothic elements which all influenced how I approached the collection. The scene at the time was very uncompromising in as far as they were making music that interested them and had no great desire for commercial success or fame. It was this authenticity that appealed to me.” – Paul O’Neill, Head Designer for Levi’s® Vintage Clothing at Levi’s Strauss & Co.

The collection serves as an ode to all things underground, featuring looks inspired by the style of the sub-genres of the Louisville punk scene—from hardcore, goth, post punk and noise bands—with a color range of yellow to purple, with oranges, golds, burgundies, and blacks mixed in. Key pieces include ‘80s inspired Graphic Tees that feature prints of insects and eyeballs, a 1980s Sweatshirt with a large spider web on the front, and the super oversized Loose Crew featuring black and red tears. Then there’s the limited-edition 1961 557 Type III Trucker Jacket with felt applique bats and moon on the back. And like all great music scenes, there’s the mix of ‘70s and ‘80s-style Levi’s® jeans, 519 colored cords, flannel shirts, striped tees, checkered sweaters, and Trucker Jackets.

Replicas from archives include the Cord Sherpa Trucker Jacket, a purple jacket from 1970s featuring a center zipper, snap front pockets, and a small “e” Levi’s White Tab, the 1960s Spike Pant, a tapered twill jean in golden yellow with a zip fly and copper shank, and pair of 1984 501® jeans with printed spider web under the front pocket.

All in all, it’s a collection of Levi’s® Vintage Clothing styles that stays true to the look of mid-‘80s Louisville musicians and fans, while keeping it fresh and contemporary for today.