Archive for March, 2010

What Does This New Mystery Clip Tell Us About The State Of The Galaxy?

March 31, 2010

Surely we live in tumultuous times. Prospectors drill for crude oil on the high seas, Conan O’Brien is unemployed and bearded, cats and dogs living together, and now this, color in the new Mystery Tom Asta clip. The Detroit Rock City-themed company was maybe due for some type of reboot after the high-profile departures of Crockett and Murphy, both saying that for them personally the bloom had gone off the monotone dipped decks. But color? Perhaps the face-ripping aliens from V already have infiltrated the Blackbox headquarters and peacefully convened an emergency brand management meeting, so jarring is the shift.

But was it inevitable. I’ve actually been sort of kind of anticipating this step since the early months of the Zero sister co, when it became apparent that black and white would be the way forward ad/graphic/video-wise for the time being, mostly because the whole thing recalled how inevitable it seemed when DC’s famed B&W ad campaign in the late 1990s eventually shifted into the rainbow realm. (DC of course now pursuing again a retrofied black/white/red scheme in their newer magazine ads.) On a similar note the recent wander through Emerica’s advertising archive revealed that they’ve been running the green theme for 13 years now, give or take, so maybe they pull a U-turn and do red for the, er, “Stay Gold” video. Disorganized ramblings aside Mystery’s hot crayola injection is pulled off well via the space-age technology that lets them color that one flatbar Andy Mac helmet yellow, for instance, and Asta’s actual tricks are not shabby either – the bigspin backside tailslide flip-out works way better on video than in internet text form and for my money that bench/two-stair spot has enormous potential for cool tricks until somebody inevitably gets the idea to do something up it (which may already have happened…)

Rhapsody In White

March 28, 2010

I’m a fairly strong supporter of Keegan Sauder’s second coming these past few years – there’s something about his low-key dirtballness that’s more genuine than a lot of dudes that seem determined to take it to the nth degree, and I relished the classically Zero-y nature of his “Strange World” section (big backside 180, tall hubba 50-50, ride-up curvy 50-50 shove-it, the ender). And so I’m well inclined to cheer his podium placement in the Tampa contest a couple weeks ago, alongside Chris Nieratko, who gives over a good portion of this recent interview to the experience. But unfortunately the accompanying photo of Keegan Sauder’s frontside rock-n-roll was totally obliterated by the monster truck rally that is this snowmobile X-games ad next door, which is on such a whole different level of amazingness that I spent a good while brewing up key words for Youtube searches to turn up somebody doing this physics-defying and awesome-looking stunt. But no dice. If anyone can help out with the name of this maneuver or better yet a clip, this Sunday afternoon would get that much better, but in the meantime here’s my favorite of the many videos I’ve now viewed, in which one enterprising bro manages a snowmobile wallride.

Ante Up, Human

March 21, 2010

A few go-rounds on crutches and going under the knife will suck some of the fun out of slam sections, versus the days when you might watch “Welcome To Hell” through the end of Jamie Thomas’ part and then return at the end of the night to press play again and revel in the bone crushing. There’s exceptions though and Mark Gonzales’ hunger for physical punishment in this Dan Wolfe-filmed Adidas clip is for sure one of them, just because it’s grimly inspiring to see a 41`-year-old man willing to repeatedly throw himself onto a curb without the roar of an X-game crowd egging him on. Maybe he’s into it too — a fast and fairly painless trip to the asphalt on a warm and sunny day sometimes can do more to clear the head than the prescribed number of warm-up kickflips. Dirt all over his shirt, he comes off hungry in this clip and it’s pretty awesome.

Has The “Listen To” Shirt Finally Arrived Via Lil Wayne’s New Limp Bizkit Video?

March 21, 2010

Alongside the Muska pants-bunch, shoelace belts and Limpies, one of skateboarding’s most enduring and important contributions to fashion surely must be the “Listen To __” t-shirt, kind of an everydude’s version of the power tie. As in, I know what you should do and I/my pre-shrunk cotton shirt will tell you to do it. There have been many versions of the shirt. My first recollection is a Big Brother-backed “Listen To Black Sabbath” that was on the racks around the time Tim O’Connor became a pro. Element’s follow-up “Listen To Bob Marley” was a little too on-the-nose for a company that was rapidly climbing the corporate rungs but DNA’s “Listen To Alien Workshop,” made famous in blue by Ryan Gee’s Love Park fountain jump in “Chomp,” put an entertaining meta twist on the increasingly tired idea. I believe Deluxe did “Listen to Skateboarding” and Baker (I think) made one not so long ago along the lines of “Listen To Those Shirts That Tell You What To Listen To.”

A previous Larry Perkins entry overlooked the fact that the SPOT overlords have bestowed upon him his own version of the shirt that you can actually buy here, which is kind of a milestone all by itself. But then the other day, I was watching the MTV Jams channel, and Lil Wayne has this new video full of poorly lit bros ollieing trash cans and in the middle of everything else he’s wearing around a “Listen To Lil Wayne” shirt, not properly formatted as far as the font and everything, but still. With Lil Wayne being the most important and expensive artist of our time, has the “Listen To” shirt broken into the mainstream? I submit to you that it has, and unless Heath Kirchart pops up in the Emerica video wearing a shirt that says only “Listen To”, companies should maybe think long and hard before reviving the concept again.

1990s Antique Roadshow (sort of): Emerica “Klink” Ad

March 19, 2010

It would be mighty nice if more companies did ad archives – it saves valuable Tampa vert video clip-watching time sifting through boxes of old magazines and helps the chronologically challenged, such as myself. A good deal of skateboard culture, such as it is, can be wrung from the yellowing pages of TWS and Thrashers, as internet websites more capable than this one point out on a daily basis. And in these times of harsh economy, if you’re one of these vaguely remitted “brand managers” wouldn’t you be jumping at the chance to circulate already paid-for advertising among untold billions of glazed-over internet eyeballs?

Anyhow as an addendum to this recent series of memory lane barrel-scraping entries, I found myself clicking through Emerica’s pretty extensive ad archive the other day and eventually went on a hunt for what must’ve been my first pair of their shoes, the Klink, pictured above. Except in dark blue. I gravitated toward them in large part cuz of the strap on the back, a feature that was key to myself and others in the days that jeans were worn loose and long. It’s funny, I recall these shoes as pretty by-the-numbers basic mid-90s fare but revisiting the ad, the wavy stitching patterns kinda threw me for a loop. I suppose though this was around the time when DC was affecting a shift towards the “sportier” designs that would later lure Emerica’s thruster-air busting Kenny Hughes with the allure of Euro Supertours yet to come.

And if I had to guess, at the time I probably would’ve put some long odds on Chris Senn hanging on longest out of the team bros listed off in the lower left.

1990s Antique Roadshow: Piece of an Actual Real-Life Menace T-Shirt

March 15, 2010

This is on some “design on a dime” shit where I had the bright idea of framing some skate T-shirts of yesteryear, or more likely remembered hearing about somebody else trying it. To those still holding out hope for an Eric Pupecki comeback, fear not, as the shirt wasn’t otherwise wearable in its pre-chopped condition and definitely wasn’t seeing much action at the bottom of a box in the garage anyway. This was among three Menace shirts owned. There also was the traditional MNC star, a heather-gray number that remained in good-if-90s-sized condition until it vaporized while moving house sometime in the early 00’s. Then there was a more nontraditional navy one that had the MNC block-type logo printed on both sides, vertically under the sleeves… if that makes sense. Now that one never fit right and I tried in vain one time to trade it to a woman at a sweaty nightclub for an MNC star logo shirt she was wearing, the one with the plaid-patterned star, but no dice.

1990s Antique Roadshow: Two Alien Workshop Stickers

March 14, 2010

Like many aging skateboarders I got a sticker “collection,” which is to say a ziplock stuffed with dozens of stickers mostly obtained as part of other purchases, and all but a handful of course are from brands that you wouldn’t mention in reputable company. The minority of actual good stickers present a problem, because they’re cool enough that you hesitate to plop them onto this month’s board, and eventually you get to a certain point where it’s tough to make the effort to put stickers on anything anyhow. So in the ziplock they sit. These Neil Blender-drawn stickers form the “TimeCode” era are probably the crown jewel of said baggie, alongside some Savier and Seek logo stickers that are certain to haul in thousands on Ebay in a couple decades. I got these second or third-hand from someone who used to work at DNA, and thought I had the Bo Turner one too, but it was either lost to the ages or stuck to something in a fit of pique. Here’s the full set

1990s Antique Roadshow: CCS Catalogue From Spring 1998

March 13, 2010

Eric Koston is featured on the cover here in some original Es Koston’s and the same Four-Star wind pants that he wears to help him do that humongous backside flip in “The Chocolate Tour.” This appeared during a reboxing of some old magazines and briefly I toyed with the idea of doing a some type of Police Informer spoof with old CCS and Cali4niaSk8express catalogs, but later saw that somebody else already did it. Most interesting are the board graphics and the shoes. Slick bottoms were gasping their last breaths, there’s a nice Andy Roy Anti-Hero, and there are boards from 23, Invisible, Acme, Scarecrow and Wu-Tang. This was around the time when Birdhouse was beginning to bank off Tony Hawk’s X-game reign, and Flameboy and Wet Willy rode high in the saddle. The Kris Markovich circle-K Duffs shoes are in here, along with two pages of Axions and the beloved DC Boxers. There are only two pairs of Vans and “loose fit” is the watchword for the pants section.

By the way, what’s become of Police Informer lately?

1990s Antique Roadshow: Alphanumeric Mix Tape That’s Really A CD

March 9, 2010

Another promo item, yet for promotional use only. This surfaced in the process of boxing up all physical music laying about the place, except for novelty items like a Krokus 12″ for instance. The back of the jewel case advises the reader to “mind ya neck.” We poke fun at naming a CD “The Mix Tape” (turning a blind eye toward Canal St.) but the tracklisting suggests this came out on cassette also, since there’s two sets of 15 songs, two intros and so on. Appearances from Raekwon, MOP, Shyne and Cuban Link, with the occasional shoutout to snowboards from DJs Green Lantern and Camilo.

1990s Antique Roadshow: Sony Boombox With World Stickers

March 8, 2010

Conceived one morning while pondering the 15-year-old sticker on an electric shaver, here we have the first in what surely may become a gripping and emotional saga of valuable items from the internet’s favorite decade that have managed not to get thrown out in the last 10-20 years.

It is either a miracle or sad state of affairs that this thing has lasted from around the release of “Love Child” to the present, especially with its wonky (and loud) 6-CD loader mechanism. But it’s still going and continues to pull double-duty advertising one defunct skateboard company and another that may as well have been for a period of time, Creager and Craig’s dedication notwithstanding. Time and listless brand management have tarnished the Gonz’s baby but I can still occasionally look at the OG Blind logo and get all wistful for the Trilogy period, and few companies have ever matched the aesthetics of the MNC star.