Posts Tagged ‘Creature’

In an Age of Plenty, the Challenge of Getting Past Lavar McBride’s Arms When He Nollie Backside Flips the Hubba Hideout Stairs

May 21, 2017

The larcenous subtlety of the X-Games, now legal to drink at 22 years old, lies in its unassailable hamhandedness. From its early, lingering and loving embrace of the “extreme” label even through the market segment’s maturation into ‘action sports,’ to its endorsement of the MegaRampTM and multiyear employment of frequent seagull target Sal Masakela; even as contest-course stewards seek to more tightly bottle and present street skating’s outlaw allure, there could only be one competitive franchise when duty requires blurting onto the interwebs ten minutes of fresh video part footage from the likes of Ishod Wair, Tiago Lemos, Cole Wilson and Na-Kel Smith. If it isn’t the best contest, strictly speaking, it’s probably the easiest spoonful of corporate-sponsored tournamentation to be gulped amongst a medicine chest otherwise proffering antiseptic runs formulated with rocks to fakie, and board-in-hand youngsters hustling up embankments and across quarterpipe decks.

Between sequences extolling the powers of Home Depot’s flooring products, Tiago Lemos’ fakie 360 flip switch backside tailslide pop out and Ishod Wair’s nighttime run through Muni are ladled liberally onto a La La Palooza of skating scooped up over the past week or so. Consider: May 12, Adidas releases a ringing video from a London trip, loaded with Rodrigo TX’s impeccably swished-out technicalities*, the magic-footed Gustav Tonnesen and freshly resurfaced matriculant Mark Suciu; it is this type of clip Adidas’ Juice crew does best and crafts better than nearly anybody. A day later, quasi-Texan Keegan McCutcheon delivers a fulsome spread of shove-its and various relatables over bars, including the hallowed wallride shove. In there somewheres was Mark Del Negro’s ambidextrous arrival via Philly on Hopps, Mark Humienik’s Sable section boasting a blistering noseblunt shove-it, and a Niels Bennett footage dump from Venture, in which a wallie 50-50 on a rail and a humongous switch wallride draws another mop-topped gangler ever closer to the still-glowing OG bathroom sign. On May 17 yung Polar wonder-bowlrider Oskar Rozenberg put out a street-heavy part for Nike, going GX in the SF hills and helping shake the Brooklyn Banks from a seven-year hibernation. And then Thrasher began dropping the Creature video, with full-throated David Gravette and Milton Martinez entries.

A daunting and woundrous time it is for footage consumers, who entertain the challenge of processing and absorbing valuable experience points from video parts with nearly each meal of the day, to say nothing of posting and or in-person pontificating on each amongst one’s chosen bros. For those with the skill, mental gonads and ill judgement to angle for their own slice of the day’s skate video watching capacity, with all of its punishing fickleness and readily rendered harshitudes, it’s gotta be awful tough.

And yet there lurks another threat to these freshly scrubbed video parts, nervously approaching their public debuts with each pixel the upload progress bar adds. Like an icey iceberg sailing deeper into frigid arctic waters, this danger is largely hidden and only grows, sometimes with only small and pointy bits visible to the non-radar enhanced eye. It appears to you in the form of Lavar McBride’s arms, downward cast after flicking one of mankind’s greatest nollie backside kickflips down the Hubba Hideout steps in ‘Trilogy,’ twenty-one years in the past. Maybe it appears as Tom Penny blurrily pushing through the parking ramp in TSA’s ‘Life in the Fast Lane,’ or maybe Steve Durante switch heelflipping into a switch frontside bluntslide, or Diego Najera’s still-incomprehensible switch varial heelflip. Those lionhearted bros offering up new video parts to the internet’s altar not only compete day-to-day with their contemporaries for its fleeting and capricious favour, but now with the entire history of what has come before.

Of the nollie backside flip’s many historical high points, are Jim Greco’s Baker2G edition or Jake Johnson’s in Mind Field able to command as many repeat rewinds as Lavar McBride’s one with the arms? Where were yall when Lavar McBride was trying to teach you to nollie flip at the DMV? How many minutes in a typical day need be devoted to consuming new footage so as to convincingly hold one’s own on the Slap boards? Where will you be for the X-Games’ dirty thirty?

*just for the record

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Insight On Current Priorities In Pro-Model Promotion From A Dude With Multiple Face Tattoos

April 7, 2013

gravette

Under the eyebrows, but:
“…[T]he amount of innocent things that are translated wrong through Instagram or Facebook… It’s annoying. There are people who know where you are when you don’t want them to know where you are. Add to that the fact that I’m being told by people that I’m blowing it and losing out on board royalties and shoe royalties because of not being on the stuff? That makes me sick. That, in skateboarding, you’re hurting yourself by choosing not to spend more time stuck behind a computer. That just doesn’t make sense. Just talk to a kid when you’re out skating, and they buy your board, you know? I’ll talk to anyone who comes up to me at a park, but I don’t want to get sucked into Facebook.”

-Technophobiac David Gravette, the May/Creature issue of Thrasher

Pyrex Wrist Vol. 2

April 3, 2013

Birdman_02

It is either fate or some higher-level commentary on the state of the culture that a supernatural-themed company that was itself brought back from the dead has been going around re-animating tricks and concepts forgotten to the annals of time, but here we are. Creature rider and reputed EDM aficionado Ryan Reyes gained gnar levels last year for innovating what is now known as a “railie,” including tickling the muse of Guy Mariano, whose career enjoyed its own second coming. Elsewhere Creature breathed blasphemous new life into that “Storm” era Smolik accessory, the Osiris G-Bag, reimagined as a giant beer koozie.

Now, after rumors of so-called “coping dancing” have percolated among musty corners of the internet for several years, Creature’s re-animator in chief Darren Navarrette in this month’s new “CSFU” project whips the white sheet off a potentially new creation, a combo handplant. As a strict adherent to the straight-and-narrow, meaning generally sidewalks and schoolyards, I’m hard-pressed to brandish the NBD acronym in the transition neighborhood, but the last vert wristwork I recall on this level was perhaps Tony Hawk’s double board spin in “The End.” Does anybody know what Navarrette’s trick is called, and if it already existed before this?

Has Ryan Reyes Found A New Place To Hide Cheese On A Pizza?

May 16, 2012

Straight out the dungeons of skate/lifestyle photography curated over at the Thrasher blogs comes this curiosity offered by Ryan Reyes, which looks like some kind of boardslide-bonk of the transfer persuasion. They call it a “railie.” Continuing this week’s celebration of Creature’s many mutations, have yall ever seen this move before, or know what it’s supposed to be otherwise called? Carving out new trick territory five decades puts dudes on HM Stanley/Dr Livingstone levels, but maybe I missed this one the first time around. Here’s a second take, to fakie. Sweet

And With Creature’s Sort-Of Update Of The Osiris G-Bag, Things Have Finally Come Full Circle

May 15, 2012

In the years before 2pac died, Norcal soothsayer E-40 occasionally spoke on the importance of timing, while rapping on open mics about industry hype. Fifteen years later everything and nothing has changed as we regard a landscape strewn about with the corpses of hard- and soft-goods brands loved and not, as well as passing specters that sometimes resemble our self-respect, long ago put in shallow graves by the energy drink dollar. The refugees of this once-noble subculture have naturally sought to subsist by eating our own collective tail, giving rise to a new/old breed of 80s ramp revivalists who represent a more innocent time via tattoos, stripey socks and macrobrew-scented breath.

When Creature rose from the dead a few years ago it had all the trappings of classic period Romero zombieism, an organic and fairly gnarly reflection of the times versus some cheesy wink-and-nudge job like that rewrite of “Pride and Prejudice” or the relaunch of Vision Street Wear*. Here you had some guys with a legit claim to the ramp dog way of life, driving around in a hearse, throwing vert jams, putting out graphics with a lot of monsters and urinating in public** versus some of the later, more hamfisted attempts to capture the Anti-Hero wave, like shoehorning bowl kids onto your picnic table/handrail squad.

Recent developments however suggest that longtime Creature mastermind Darren Navarette may have cooked too long in the sun of San Diego, a region of Southern California sometimes blamed for poisoning the autumn years of the 1990s with bulky rave footwear and tasteless technical tricks. Among the glowing product reviews posted at Skatedaily.net is a recent item highlighting Creature’s “Black Box cooler”, a toteable refrigeration unit the size of a sixpack that also offers speakers and a hookup for an Ipod or other digital music device. Fans of “the Storm” will immediately be transposed backward in time toward an era when the Federalz enlivened several sessions via the notorious Osiris G-Bag, which you may or may not know has evolved through the years recently into a unit known as the “Megatron” that earned its own review, and from a Canadian.

The pic on the Skatedaily review features a Van Halen album presumably blasting, but the use of an Ipod gives the came away. Can one credibly cool a sub-$5 sixer within this product? Will Peter Smolik, flush with Blitz cash flow and emboldened by Rob Dyrdek’s recent dealmaking, attempt to merge Sk8Mafia with Creature? Will the Federalz speak on the controversy on an upcoming mixtape? Would Hell Rell endorse this thing? Does this speaker-cooler-box represent a risk of serious eye injury because beers or soda could be shaken up to dangerous levels by heavy bass vibrations from the tunes?

*BTW, when is somebody going to float the idea of bringing back Prime?
**I’m assuming

Blast Em

August 17, 2009

saints-sinners0002

Some great street skating photos from the Brockman issue of Thrasher, chronicling the Santa Cruz/Creature “Saints & Sinners” tour, great to the point I had a hard time choosing which one to poorly scan and post up. I’ve been a Sid Melvin fan, but docked him some points when he started wearing fedoras and went all-in on the urban creative movement. However he’s soldiered through a knee injury and this multi-material wallride is too lifted to ignore. Meanwhile the below Mikey Curtis ollie evoked a serious “holy shit” upon turning the page. Some Indianapolis local may well bring it to our attention that this bar is only three feet high or something (in turn revealing Mikey Curtis as a next-gen Pancho Moler) but whatever the case, it’s a pretty big boost. This issue of Thrasher has a lot of other great pics actually – a massive switch b/s tail from Flipper Rodrigo Teixeira, a really awesome Spitfire ad that features a powerful Peter Hewitt gap to backside lipslide, and even a shot of Mike McGill in what appear to be, yes, brown cords.

Oh and in the text department, Windsor James offers some pause-worthy advice for travel comfort:
Man Lean
That’s the buds. Tave, Reyes, or Sierra usually. It’s only on planes or on a long van ride. We steal a pillow from the hotel and get the fucking snugs going. You fold the pillow in half and put it in the middle of the seats on the plane. The pillow expands into a little triangle, and then we’re all fitted up and can go to sleep. Then you do the man lean. It’s like if we were at war or something and you had to stand up and sleep at the same time, that’s how you’d be sleeping. Fucking get the fader lean on. If you had a pillow at the bar, you’d do the same thing. If your homie was fucked up too, you’d be like “just chill–lean real quick with this pillow.”

Anyway, yeah, the Curtis photo:

saints-sinners0001

Turf Talk

July 8, 2009

hitz_turf

You know how when you look at old photos from the 70s, they’ve got that weird look about them – not just the colors and clothes and so on but the people too, like everybody just woke up in a disco or some such. I feel kinda the same way about older skate pics – if it’s the way they’re composed, the outfits, tricks, spots, whatever, I don’t know. This shot of Sam Hitz backside hitzin’ the coping at Milwaukee’s storied Turf skatepark is a nice example, though theoretically this same photo could be snapped today. From Thrasher’s always-good photo annual, aka the Antwuan Dixon magazine, which has a few other photos from the glory days of the Turf along with this kid Tom Remillard doing a zany f/s rock-n-roll.

Flame On

January 23, 2009


Slob on my cat

This Darren Navarette photo is all kinds of awesome for all kinds of awesome reasons, but I sort of realized today that if you pulled it out of a big pile of pictures, it could theoretically be from 1999, 1989, or (maybe) 1979… you get the idea, right? Yeah, timeless. (Brendan Klein photo from the Trapasso issue of TSM.)

“These guys are idiots so I was just running with it”

May 16, 2008

When I was little I used to read skate magazines and bug out at the crazy stories spun by pros in their interviews because they seemed to live such wild, reckless lives. Case in point: the Andy Roy interview in BB, which I could scan if somebody hasn’t already done it, Shiloh, etc. Jim Gagne of all people had a really entertaining interview in a mid-90s Thrasher I have somewhere. And Ryan Kenreich, I think, had a pretty hilarious interview in the waning years of BB where he broke down his lengthy arrest record.

Nowadays of course most interviews are bland as plain yogurt–name, sponsors, hometown, how’d you get into skating, blah blah–and the stories about getting fucked up and whatnot have become pretty passe, if not quaint. But now and then I read something that, while it doesn’t bug me out like it would in the past, produces a laugh or something for the same reasons.*

Anyway, in the May issue of Slap there’s a tag team interview with David Gravette and Devin Appelo that was pretty funny. I have to marvel at the logic at work in this story, really.

David Gravette: It started out as five of us walking through the streets with ski masks. One of us was carrying a crow bar, the other one had a thing of rope, and the other dude had a flashlight.

Devin Appelo: Didn’t we have a saw?

DG: No. Anyone who saw us out the window was gonna call the cops, but these guys are idiots so I was just running with it. So we walked to the house–it’s this big Indian museum with a bunch of Indian artifacts. Taylor’s plan was to jump on the roof and take a smoke ventilation piece out and rappel in. We found out when we got there that the shingles were too icy to climb up, but Devin used his crow bar to pop the door open. We walked in and hung out for a bit. I had to convince Taylor not to take a bear pelt. He was running around with the bear pelt over him pretending to be a bear and ran into a pole. Then Taylor and Devin wanted to light a fire in there.

DA: Dude, how cool would it be to light a fire in there?

DG: I was like, no, we gotta go.” So we left and Devin was like, “Let’s get on this train, it’ll take us back to where we wanna go.” So we get on this train in the middle of winter in Portland and it’s so cold. We’re holding on and it started picking up speed for a second and I was like, “Dude, we’re not gonna be able to jump off if it keeps going!” It kept going for a bit and it got pretty scary, but then it slowed down and we hopped off. We weren’t really close to anywhere near where we wanted to be, but it was alright.

Slap: Spell “alligator.”

DG: Fuck you. What if I get it wrong? I can’t even try right now; it’s too dangerous.

DA: Dude, I could never spell that word.

DG: I can write it. A-L-I… Does it got two L’s?

DA: No, I don’t think so.

DG: It’s just A-L-I-G-A-T-O-R, right?

Slap:There’s two L’s, but I’ll give you an “A” for effort, idiot.

DG: Dude, this is gonna make me look like a dumb ass.

Despite (because of?) his general idiocy Gravette has been skating like a man possessed this last year. He landed the new TWS cover with one of his kinker rail attacks and the photo above from the Slap interview is pretty bananas. I half-expected Reynolds to tap him for the Deathwish lineup, because shitty as it is, third-tier companies like Creature tend to have a hard time hanging on to their young guns. Plus he has the TWS video part coming up. Get your money up Navarette.

*Like many skateboard bloggers I am over the hill and nurse serious nostalgia for the 1990s. Don’t get mad, I’m only being real.