Posts Tagged ‘Canada’

Summertime Mixtape Vol. 3 – Jon West ‘Come Together’

July 6, 2015

As 1990s Gonz detritus goes ATM Click didn’t come away with a high-mileage logo like Blind or buried-treasure video footage like 60/40 but it may have had the most vibrant second creative wind under the joint vision of Mike Manzoori and Jon Miner, those later constructors of Emerica’s emerald-tinted movies. ATM Click’s hazily cluttered full-length ‘Come Together,’ later xexored by Andrew Reynolds for Baker’s kitchen-sink approach to videomaking once the baton passed from J Strickland, starts with Jon West scrawling tracers by night across some prominent West Coast spots, getting pitched hard and dealing out some lesser-seen tricks for the time (smith grind 180, frontside salad) years before Foundation, the frontside hurricane grinds and horror movies.

Lucas Puig Ledge Sequence Raises Concerns That The Ghost Of Chris Lambert’s Career May Be Trying To Possess His Soul Dudes

February 10, 2012

Several people noticed a change when Lucas Puig left Lakai Footwear Ltd. to go work for Adidas, fulfilling a longtime dream of endorsing certain of the same sportswear products as his French heroes of years past. For most people, the difference centered on his feet and the shoes he was wearing. But behind the scenes at industry functions some began to whisper that a stranger and potentially more troubling metamorphosis could be at work, namely that during this time of upheaval in Lucas Puig’s sponsorship situation that the specter of a defunct pro career, years in the grave, may be seeking to supplant the “Fully Flared” skater’s grasp on his own affairs and remake his career in the poltergeist’s own graven image.

This month’s Adidas ad spotlights what we must interpret as a silent battle for nothing less than Lucas Puig’s soul. Here we find him maxing out his “special” bar with a switch hardflip backside tailslide, back to switch even, a maneuver that requires intense concentration to successfully land for maximum bonus points. Deep in thought and staring down the ledge similar to the way a hungry wolf in the French hillsides might stare down a wayward baguette, Lucas Puig does not notice his hands beginning to move on their own, seeking some extra token to take the photo to some other, unspeakable level. Over one shoulder hovers the translucent shade of Chris Lambert, gleefully urging Lucas Puig’s hand toward a clear plastic water bottle, long since damned for cluttering European cities and being overpriced to begin with. Over the other shoulder floats SAD, fingertips at his temples and eyes closed, exerting all of his internal forces in order to sway Lucas Puig’s hand instead toward a white handtowel that represents purity of soul and also the Ramada Inn.

Luckily for Lucas Puig’s future prospects we can see that the white towelette was the victor. But this episode raises a more deeply troubling threat, that the skateboard industry in this time of harsh recession could be primed for haunting. Ghosts regularly preyed on pros in at the tail end of the 1980s and early 1990s when the industry lolled over and exposed its weak underbelly during the administration of George Bush Sr., and many privately fear that a worse haunting could be at hand soon. Besides the usual property damage and costs related to expungement, an abrupt rise in hauntings poses longer-term threats because it can be scary and equity investors find it difficult to secure insurance against ghosts. This weekend Boil the ocean urges all friends and defenders of the industry to attend church and not answer the door if it seems like a ghost is ringing the bell. Thank you

Good Grief

June 18, 2011

Around the time Mark Appleyard was making his Courtney Love-powered run at SOTY status, a sequence emerged of the kickflip backside tailslide bigspin on that rail, which inspired onetime “Concrete Powder” impresario Jef Choy to remark “skateboarding is a game of inches, and he just took it up a foot.” Apply as appropriate to newly anointed pro Anthony Schultz’s ender-ender. Other highlights are the bump kickflip over the big barrier and the pan-out from the grill.

Does Liking The Plan B Am Clip More Because Of The Music Make This Blog Even More Shallow Than It Already Is?

July 20, 2010

If Boil the ocean had its druthers, which would probably be unwise for any number of reasons, companies that fail the Darwinian test would be relegated forevermore to the land of copers, Rip Grip and Vision berets. I may not have been as big a Menace fan as the Police Informer or as into 101 as was Bobshirt, but those companies and others* hold a dear place in my heart that trembles now and then when somebody floats the idea of a resurrection. Touring the old material via a DVD box set or run of graphics is one thing, sullying the legacy by repurposing something pivotal to a specific era for a new time/place/branding opp is another altogether dudes.

You could make some interesting arguments as to why Plan B might constitute an exception, like how it was kinda mercenary in the first place when it came to the team-building, the squad maybe not as tight-knit or the graphics being hit or miss over the years. At this point though the second generation has been around nearly as long as the first, and kinda like the Simpsons, the golden years are so far removed as to make it sort of pointless to complain anymore. Mixed feelings aside though, credit ought to be handed over to any company that can make a legitimate claim to fielding its generation’s uber-team, as squishy a concept as that may be, and more for managing to hang onto most of them for longer than a couple years. The aftermath can be harsh, see also Es shoes, Powell Peralta, and, ah, the first Plan B.

All this being an especially longwinded and meandering run-up to a brief discourse on the new lil amateur-focused clip Plan B put out last week, highlighting the considerable talents of Scott Decenzo and Felipe Gustavo, neither of whom were born when Plan B started coming together, I bet. But upon a couple semi-distracted watches I’m prepared to deem this thing the most Plan B-est video that D&C have turned out in the post-Y2K. The Bad Religion and Del have something (a lot) to do with this, and I think I’m ok with that, if you are.

There’s other stuff, like the random movie sample and some nicely indignant kick-out footage, but the Plan B hallmark also is there in the appropriately ridiculous level of skating. Scott Decenzo, one half of the Canadien flying Decenzo brothers, has been tagged with the “good but boring” brush and some of these clips (like the frontside noseslide pinwheels) suggest he’s reading his press with a curled lip and furrowed brow. There’s pretty serious and/or wacked out stuff in here like the elusive switch frontside hurricane and the frontside boardslide to hurricane grind, which seems like a super risky trick and turned out way better on video than I thought it would.

Felipe Gustavo, who gains additional 1990s points for pushing nice flatground frontside flips and keeping alive the cocked-hat style**, shifts the intensity to the wax-laden ledges and confirms that nollie frontside noseslide 270 shove-its are among the prerequisites for getting paid by Danny Way these days. This section I think is a good argument for why the current approach to videos, like taking three years to film a five/six-minute section, can be the wrong one–five minutes of this little dude’s ledge magicks would’ve been pretty numbing, but the two and a half minutes allotted here is just right and judiciously saves up the truly zany stuff for a grand slam breakfast of a finish that may or may not include a hardflip backside noseblunt in a line. That nollie flip backside noseblunt was another one that worked out a lot better on film than I would’ve thought.

*Not so much Seek, though
**Also DJ Drama

The Only Olympics We Need Is the Bong Olympics Brah

February 18, 2010


Rings n’ things

There’s a famous saying in skateboarding that goes, “the only Olympics we need is the Bong Olympics, brah.” I believe the phrase was first coined by Tony Alva on the set of a “Police Academy” prequel and the “brah” might have really been a “bro.” Yet the point still stands. As these words are fumblingly typed out, world records are being broken, dreams realized and untold riches crammed into the overflowing piggybanks of the International Olympic Committee in Whistler, Canada, in part thanks to skateboarding’s redheaded stepchild, snowboarding. They also say that the road to Olympic gold is paved in gold, but as illustrated by the pixels above, it’s clear that reaching for those rings is perilous too.

There’s an interesting poll going right now over at Skatedaily.net that currently indicates about 60% of the literate skateboard website reading populace knows what skater Tonya Harding, skier Bode Miller and Polish pole vault jumper Władysław Kozakiewicz learned the hard way, which is to say that for free-thinking maverick types, it’s better to avoid the Olympic juggernaut altogether. Yet there remain those in the pro-skateboard realm as well as the business side (mostly the business side) for whom the allure of Olympic glory is only too seductive. It is they who look upon an event schedule already crowded up with badminton, archery and fast running and say “me too” in service of country and that catch-all greater good, “bringing skateboarding to more kids.” CCS check-out page meet Visa card, etc.

As entertaining as it is to dream up potential uniforms for the West Coast-weighted U.S. Skate Team*, and imagine the inner battles raging between inner demons and the certainty of across-the-board urinalysis, it would seem folly to pound this particular square peg into the Olympics’ gold-plated hole, if for no other reason than it would probably require the shaving-off of whatever edges remain. The yellow precious metal lured Captain Blackbeard to a watery grave, and even Curly proved that you can’t take it with you.

And beyond plunder, what would the big O bring to skateboarding beyond a healthy dose of good-natured jingoism and hours of painful narration? Remember the “harnie”? It is for this reason we can and should applaud every Mike V hockey stands brawl, every Antwuan Dixon face tattoo, every Lizard King Satan quotation and web-archived Ybor City drug arrest; they may ultimately be all that stands between us and the doom that lies in the comedown after all gold rushes, brahs.

*with all due respect to the halfcab/brown cord/white tee ensemble and the DC Euro Supertours

Last of the Fucked Up Blind Kids

June 15, 2009


A post in which we reference the Venga Boys and anuses but the overall tone is pretty positive

The summer video season is upon us, with what seems like two videos dropping every week and as if to prove the point, I just saw this preview for the new Black Label video that apparently is coming out next month and most definitely features a bunch of kids I’m not familiar with. All of which means that A. I’m over the hill, again, and B. well behind on the commentating, such as it is. I’ll expound elsewhere about the Blind video, known to some as “The Blind Video,” based on the true story about filming a Blind video. If you have not seen it I’ll touch on some of the critical plot points: Jake Duncombe likes to party and as such will one day skate to a Venga Boys song. Jake Brown manufactures t-shirts with the F-word on them and does one of the zanier manuals in a while, Grant Patterson prefers big gaps, tall tees, and music by/for/about the ghetto. Morgan Smith is painfully Canadian, Jani Latiala catches some of his flip tricks really weird, Ronnie Creager glides.

But a few more words and possibly a couple mixed metaphors are due James Craig, however, who to my mind turned in the best section of this video and possibly the best of his career — which if you graphed it would look like two big boobs spanning the last decade, or maybe also a buttcrack with Craig’s heinous knee injury marking the tragic anus. You could probably make a sort-of convincing case for how James Craig represented the rear guard of 1990s World riders, and elsewhere Carbonite submitted “The Blind Video” as the most “Trilogy”-like World production since “Trilogy” which I can sort of see, and sort of not see. For sure a lot of these lines could have been performed in a schoolyard or UC campus of your choosing, but it’s more how this James Craig section fulfills the promise of his Blind amateur footage like this when he was something of a pre-PJ Ladd PJ Ladd (also noting the last trick symmetry with Craig’s first line in this year’s production, yes).

James Craig has also engineered a sort of double comeback with this part… in the unfortunately titled “What If” video it was clear he had pretty much all his tricks back, and then some, but his arms were all over the place to such a degree you wonder if Torey Pudwill used to watch it and take down shaky, jagged notes. He made it partway back with the surprise section in “Get Familiar” (that bigspin flip) but I gotta say I wasn’t expecting him in 2009 to be running around doing high-speed switch heelflip smith grinds, noseblunts to switch backside tailslides, and that rocket launcher kickflip that maybe exorcised some of the triple-set demons of days past. The dude could be a candidate for the short list of people who can pass off varial kickflips and it’s likely the frontside heelflip on flat will rank among the season’s very best. We here at BTO try not to read into pro skaters’ motivations and/or feelings that much but this section has the serious “fun” vibe for me; I’m a sucker for happy endings and glad James Craig handed us this one*, though I heard a second attempt at the ender trick may have taken him out again. If so, get well soon, and we’ll all try to bear in mind the thrice-endowed tart of “Total Recall.”

Bonus: James Craig’s part from the Razor Sharp vid, which I think I watched whilst drinking one time.

*pause

Hope Springs Eternal

April 29, 2009


Flower power

Following on fellow team rider Jereme Rogers’ late-nite i-phone philosophizing, here we find his comparatively soft-spoken countryman and teammate Ryan Gallant in a season-specific ad that’s refreshing in more ways than one. The trick itself isn’t super hot, not “Put ‘Em In the Lac” hot anyway, but it’s nice enough, the angle is different, and personally I’m okay not being beaten over the head with ender-enders on each and every page. You know? Plan B as a company carries a lot of baggage* (though Massachusetts as the new Canada is an intriguing concept) but there are small things they get right now and then that make it a little harder to write them off entirely, abysmal graphics and reality TV car-wrecks aside. This ad, and the fact that they seem to have ditched the campaign idea in favor of generally running with whatever they’re feeling that month, transports me back to a time when the only skateboarder putting out rap albums held it down on Nickelodeon. The Scott Decenzo full-bleed switch backside tailslide last month was cool also.

*Insert Jereme Rogers Louis Vuitton-related rap lyric here

Miles away from ordinary

May 29, 2008


The happiest place on earth!

I can’t recall exactly how I ran across Terry Worona’s site–I’m assuming I found it in a dream and bookmarked it in another dream, or possibly something even more mystic. Anyway he’s a Ottawanian (?) photog with some pretty badass stuff up there; hopefully he doesn’t get bummed out about me cropping and reposting the Dave Nolan ollie up above, but the OG version was super wide and it’s one of the more unique photos I’ve seen in a long time.

So check the site–lots of good stuff in the “tearsheets” section. Here’s another one of my favorites. Big fan of tail fins right here. And Bible churches.