Archive for April, 2008

Seven things I liked about Terry Kennedy’s Deathwish part

April 30, 2008

TK keeps progressing, sort of, though if I were him I’d stop hyping the fact that he only started skating in 2000 or whatever it was, because each part he puts out running basically the same tricks it gets less impressive and more obvious. But what am I saying here, a Terry Kennedy video part isn’t about tricks, or even skating really. It’s about being young and carefree and well-off and making rap songs in your living room and designing fashionable bulletproof vests. But I’m on TK’s side really. At this point he’s at least as cartoonish as your Jim Grecos and Chad Muskas, but the difference to me is that he seems to take himself a lot less serious. Uh, most of the time.

Anyway, the highlights of Terry Kennedy’s Deathwish part:

1. The wacky and possibly intoxicatory smile on his face when he comes out the door in his tank top and short shorts at the beginning there. Ha ha ha! What is he doing anyway. Crazy guy.

2. His little monologue in the basement with the ping-pong lady in the background. I’ve watched it at least a half-dozen times and I’m still not sure what it is he’s saying toward the end there. It sounds intense though. Is he talking about Lupe? If he was going for the Smack DVD angle he should’ve had Gorecki and the rest of the Ice Cream crew wearing bandannas over their faces and flashing guns. But keep the ping pong lady. It makes you look unpredictable and a little insane.

3. He lets Sammy Baca sit on his couch without even putting that plastic shit on it. I thought that was nice of him.

4. Fakie 5-0 down the white hubba. This was a good trick.

5. His rap song. TK’s producer, or homie, or cousin, or whatever website he downloaded the instrumental from seems to be improving at a marginal rate, much like TK himself on a skateboard. Some of this recent Fly Society material sounds like it could maybe stand on its own near the end of a 30-track Slick Pulla mixtape, which is saying something. TK’s lyrics are pretty standard fare as far as having fancy things and affirming his eternal hatred for snitches but he sounds pretty convincing to me.

6. That last bar he f/s railslides looked like something Rowley would have tackled before he got old and started skating ditches all the time. Tall and beastly.

7. Finally, the bro-down session after his last trick reminded me of “Fulfill the Dream”… in a good way.

P.S. what’s with all the unicycles in this video? Kind of amazing…

Gee thing

April 27, 2008

DC TV, despite DC’s typically overdesigned web interface, is actually turning out to be pretty quality. A little while back they put up this Ryan Gee photo gallery that has a few gems from the last few years. I haven’t seen much of Gee’s shit recently, which may just mean that I’m not paying close enough attention, but for quite a while he was holding down the East Coast like few others. It looks like his personal site is still going, though there isn’t much new on there… this Maldonado shot is gold however.

Last Axion Heroes

April 25, 2008

Kareem Campbell was many things–legendary skater, mid-90s cultural architect, Peralta-caliber talent scout, semi-convincing skit actor–but the title of successful businessman continues to elude him, even with all those Tony Hawk Pro Skater appearances. Plenty of dudes have abandoned the board for the darkman role with varying degrees of success, but what made Kareem’s gradual exit from mags and videos suck so bad wasn’t the steady decline of his companies but how raw of a skater he was, even up to the point where he disappeared.

Crailtap linked to a clip from the last Axion footwear tour the other day, and in between Javier Nunez generally being underrated and Devine Calloway ripping all over the place there’s more than a few tricks from Kareem and he still had it, even half-assing it at demos (or full-assing it in the case of the switch hardflip). It’s probably way past the point to hope for any kind of comeback, and his unfortunate link-up with ATM and the supposed Axion revival really do not count. I’m talking more the kickflips over oil drums and the manhandled rail tricks. Those were some good years though. There’s another Kareem-related post in the works, so expect more half-bitter nostalgia to come. But meanwhile check out Devine’s switch hurricane. Jesus christ…

Get it how you live

April 24, 2008

While MJ kind of pushed it to and past the outer limits last year, there’s something to be said for video parts that you can kind of get lost in, where by the time they’re over you’re remembering tricks here and lines there and for a while each re-watch is a process of discovery (or something). Mike Carroll has made a few of these parts, Lavar in Trilogy of course, and a lot of lesser skaters.

Time will judge this new part from freshly minted Sk8Mafia pro Kellen James, who pushes the six-minute mark and strings together enough crazy tricks that I’m not going to name them off. The mash-up music selection is kind of questionable but it’s a banger of a part for sure. Some may whine about paid dues and such, but this dude has been around longer than a while and if logging footage week in and week out on the TWS website doesn’t count as doing your time, I mean, jesus.

Personally I had no idea he was even half this good, and if I wanted to get bitter here I could harp on about any number of tricks that would make better TSM covers than a Sheckler air-ball kickflip, but let’s give Kellen James his moment in the sun here and hold up a toast to more video parts like this to freak out and rewind for a few months.

Flo Jo

April 20, 2008

Today’s dispatch from the holy shit department: Joey Pepper with hair

(via crailtap)

Jah love

April 20, 2008

Have you seen him? (on a skateboard in the last 24 months)

I’ve been sitting on the Rasa Libre promo for a couple weeks and it hit me that I should write a review of it for 4/20 because the pale-skinned patchouli purveyors would probably be stoked on it. Actually I’m kind of surprised this video even came out, because I was very much in the “believe it when I see it” camp re: their resurrection last year. Partly because of the fickle nature of skateboard trends, and even though Rasa was right on time when they originally came out (that magical summer where every Johnny Kickflip dreaded his hair and abstained from deodorant), at this point the whole vibe has kind of been co-opted by Element and summarily played out. Also because they’re a bunch of hazed out hippies.

Anyway, the video. First off I was shocked at how little reggae there was, especially after the last Rasa Libre video, also known as the Ipath promo.

Jon Newport: Fresh off the sunken Popwar ship and ready to roll the dice with the recently resurfaced Rasa boat, Newport’s definitely after the thrill-seeking lifestyle. I like Newport though, because I’m a fan of Florida skaters in general and I like how he hands his tricks really hard, kind of like Pete Eldridge does. Feather-footed dudes like Dylan Rieder are great but sometimes you want to see somebody bring his wheels down like a ton of bricks.

Ryan Lay: This kid strikes me as one who felt the Rasa groove pretty heavy when the company first came out and he rode with it… this has its ups (snappy nollies, loose style) and downs (pink scarf, uncomfortable-looking cutoff jean shorts)

Brian Botehlo: Let me get my hippie moment real quick: those clouds in his first line at 3rd & Army look so cool. Also, nice b/s nollie noseblunt. And switch b/s nosegrind.

Nate Jones: All I heard before I watched this was like “Nate Jones only has like three tricks” but really he’s got almost two minutes of footage here. And sure it’s all the usual, kickflip, b/s flip, 360 flip, b/s tail, but shit, most of it’s down crazy hills and how much more do we expect from Nate Jones at this point anyway? As far as I remember the last part where he was really trying was “Reel to Real,” a good seven or eight years ago at this point. And Matt Field is pretty much the best mentor you could have as far as getting years of mileage out of a handful of tricks, so this part is pretty satisfying. Anyway, word has it Nate Jones bounced from Rasa, so who knows if we’ll ever see anything more out of him. Maybe some kind of comeback attempt in another five years…

Family section we’ll pass over, except to note Mike Bowman’s pretty amazing nut-cruncher on the power line pole. Nice

Kenny Reed: Getting Kenny Reed was kind of a genius move for Rasa because unlike some other guys whose pro status is secure (Nate Jones) Kenny Reed seems happy to keep putting out video parts, in return for a steady supply of plane tickets to countries that end in -stan and begin with a handful of scrabble tiles. He’s good for long lines with random flatground tricks thrown in (switch f/s shove-it, b/s 360) and I think he’s even got a 540 flip in there. But whoever put this video together needs to understand that just because a trick makes a good photo doesn’t mean the footage automatically needs to be used. Specifically his two tricks on that white bank over the stairs, the 5-0 and the f/s boardslide. Thank god they’re followed by some Kenny Reed classics, the uber-long b/s 5-0 and a floaty 360 flip.

Mike Daher: It took some balls to put this footage in here, because it makes a lot of the other shit look pretty stupid. So good.

Ben Gore: Slippery b/s lipslides and cab flip bombs in lines. The floaty b/s 360s are good too. He rides a lot of the current trick trends I think, but he rips, and probably he’ll put out better stuff than this in the future. Good part though, for sure.

Matt Field: I was surprised how much effort he put into this, really, although that doesn’t explain why they included that impossible over the bar. Or that heelflip in the Japan line. More tricks than I thought he still knew how to do, but I’m not into the way he looks on a board, I can understand why some people are into him though. My question is, who decided to put him after Ben Gore?

4th and long

April 18, 2008


Could be awesome, could be something else entirely. Except that was pretty awesome too.

Knock you out your tax bracket

April 15, 2008

Somewhere I have this Josh Kalis megamix with a ton of footage from old 411’s and cameo appearances in other people’s part and whatnot, which I should upload at some point, but I ran across this stripped down edit of DC’s King of New York thing that came out a little while back and it reminded me about one of the best things about Kalis, how his skate ratness remains intact enough to keep learning new tricks and trying bizarre shit like that ollie over to b/s noseblunt… I don’t know if it works for me aesthetically or whatever but it’s a fairly nutty thing to even comprehend. Also witness the switch b/s bigspin, moving things forward in the living room. And of course the Alien video’s been pushed back til August…

Preaching about certain things

April 14, 2008

So I guess Fred Gall started a blog to promote Domestics and whatever weirdness he has going on in New Jersey. So far it’s mainly a load of photos and the odd video. That’s all well and good, but I was sort of hoping he’d include some of his amazing stories, a few of which were detailed in a pretty classic Strength magazine interview (I think it was Strength). To wit:

In San Francisco once, me and my friend Louis went down to the laundromat to do our laundry. We were staying with Mike Daher. And Lennie Kirk, he’s christian right. So we go to the laundromat and we’re skating out front and Lennie comes up on his bike and we were like “Hey what’s up, Lennie, how you doing?” And he started preaching to us about certain things. And a kid comes rolling up. And me and Lou are just chilling and Lennie just starts staring him down, like just looking at him all hard. And the kid goes “What the fuck you looking at whiteboy?” And he got in Lennie’s face and Lennie goes “Go home and get your gun” and started saying all this stupid shit to him for no reason. And the kid was like “I’ll be back”. And we were like “What? Why’d you do that? What’s wrong with you?” Thought he was supposed to be, all pleasant, or whatever. So the kid comes back a little while later, we’re up the street, he comes back with a pipe, a big ass pipe. Me and Louis are skating and Lennie is on the sidewalk, on his bike, and the kid comes charging up with his pipe and starts swinging. Hits Lennie in the arm one time real bad and he’s about to start kneeing him. Me and Lou ran over and started swinging our boards at him a bit. And then Lennie jetted and we were trying to fight the kid, but he had a big ass pipe and was quicker or whatever. So he swung at us, he caught Lou in the back. We were like “Fuck this, let’s just jet on him.” So we jetted on him and the kid, we couldn’t shake him for blocks. He kept following us and we thought it was cool and then he comes flying up on the bike and we lost him by bombing some crazy hill. He couldn’t catch us. We went back to Mike’s house and Lennie’s arm was like fractured and shit, pretty fucked up.

Is it too much to hope for a Lennie Kirk blog? The answer is probably yes, unfortunately…

Purple Haze

April 13, 2008

Somebody put together this edit of Nick Trapasso from some recent Toy Machine footage and it’s real good. Personally I never would have guessed that the little kid from the Bootleg video, flopping switch heelflips on a board half as tall as he was, would grow into one of the brighter hopes for skating’s future. Kareem Campbell probably would’ve known, if he wasn’t busy digging City Stars’ grave with an iced-out shovel. Either way Trapasso was laying low for a couple years there, cocooning or something before taking flight via switch b/s 360s and whatnot.