“It was about smashing down walls”: How Adidas invaded nu-metal

Baggy-ass JNCO jeans. Fishnet shirts. New Era snapbacks. Three-foot wallet chains. Looking back, nu-metal fashion was fucking wild. Veering from the skate-obsessed frat couture of Fred Durst to the steroidal goth glam of Coal Chamber-era Dez Fafara, it was a wide church, too, full of artists out to forge an identity that was brighter, fresher and louder than anything that’d come before. While it’s easy to see the alt. credibility in the outlandish hairstyles (Frosted spikes! Droopy dreadlocks! Animal print!), PVC bodysuits and frankly impractical facial piercings, there was something more subtly subversive about the proliferation of sportswear – Adidas-branded apparel, in particular – across an outsider scene that’d for so long positioned itself as the alternative. “It was a...

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