Posts Tagged ‘hardflips’

Protection Money

March 7, 2015

wade

Somehow, as global intelligence and stylistic nets began tightening around the turn of the century, the 5-0 achieved a Keyser Söze-esque exit that eluded other tricks. Kickflips? Jim Greco was on the case in ‘Feedback,’ laying down a red line between ‘flick’ and ‘mob’ that left room for the Gonz but few others as Tom Penny’s shredded Accel toe caps ascended to deity status. Snowplow nosegrinds were sidelined after Anthony Pappalardo and Brian Wenning came through in ‘Photosynthesis,’ reserving any deck contact for an early pop out. Even a freshly celebrified Chad Muska couldn’t preserve the ‘illusion’ frontside flip from the Andrew Reynolds movement, and Bryan Herman did likewise for hardflips a few years later.

The 5-0 kept on skidding its tail into a fresh millennium though. “Mileage,” a naysayer may neigh. “How much better is a truck-balanced 5-0 going to look, anyway.” Well, how much ‘worse’ did a classically vertical hardflip in the Kareem Campbell mode look than the commoditized version available today in most city-sanctioned street plazas? The answer may confuse and arouse, but rarely satisfy.

Erstwhile French Canadian Wade Desarmo these days often occupies what could be construed as the ‘style’ wing of the DGK/Gold Wheels spectrum versus the increasingly convoluted flip-in and/or -out combinations forged in the J-Kwon smithy on recent weekends. It was sort of hard to tell through the compressed vision of the ‘Parental Advisory’ VX footage, but time seems to have worn away the past decade’s profuse denim and freely flapping basketball jerseys, leaving in place a journeyman hardflipper who nowadays mines a sensibly pantsed seam somewhere in that rational no-man’s land between stylistic spectrum endpoint-holders Dane Vaughn and Dustin Montie, with tricks increasingly resemblant of Mark Appleyard in his oversleeping SOTY heyday.

Is Wade Desarmo, whose appearances in last month’s ‘Gold Goons’ and last year’s ‘Blood Money’ quickly become highlights on repeated viewings, the case-maker for a balanced 5-0 grind? He hardflipped beautifully into one in ‘Parental Advisory,’ script-flipping of a sort versus a similarly balanced 5-0 that Marc Johnson varial heelflipped out of in ‘Modus Operandi.’ ‘Gold Goons’ is a worthy successor to ‘Got Gold’ in all of the necessary ways and the eponymous goons produce obvious highlights such as Rodrigo TX’s tailslide kickflip with the Keenan Milton mail in the back pocket, Tiagos Lemos’ massive switch backside tailslide on the stage and run through Carroll’s loading dock, Carlos Iqui’s hardflip b/s nosegrind revert and switch frontside 360.

Many of these tricks nevertheless would leave the 5-0 grind feeling safely skidding its tail through another decade, aside from a hardflip or varial heelflip between friends now and then — if it were not for again, Wade Desarmo, fresh off a switchstance Pupecki grind back to switch, still facing the ledge with one of the more ominous look-backs since Birdhouse flew Rick McCrank to a nighttime jam session at the San Dieguito handrail, perhaps signaling that the 5-0 grind may yet be revisited before completion of the looming presidential campaign.

10. Luan Oliveira – ‘Strike and Destroy’

December 22, 2014


Around, good lord, thirteen years ago some magazine succinctly summed up the primal appeal of PJ Ladd’s genre-shifting ‘Wonderful, Horrible Life’ video part as “a kid skating down the street, flipping his board;” that is basically what occurs in Luan Oliveira’s Thrasher section out earlier this year, except down some crumbly Brazilian hills and in between the odd pedestrian. After getting a good deal of spazzy tech out of his system in Flip’s claymation movie ‘Xtremely Sorry’ Luan Oliveira has migrated into a Brandon Westgate mode in recent years, and with not a lot to most of the spots in this part the focus winds up being heavily on the tricks, which are fast and textbook-sharp without being lifeless — there is a mean switch frontside heelflip here, which Luan Oliveira has had around for a while, a monstrous hardflip, et cetera. For whatever reason the soundtrack to this one doesn’t grate as much as it probably should.

The Year Of The Lion

January 3, 2011

Looking back on that “top ten” list I’m seeing now a lot of rap songs, not a lot of transition and almost everybody did some kind of crooked grind pop-over. So be it…

Some other really good ones:
Matt Bennett – “Brainwash”
-I’ve been a fan of his pretty well-established range of tricks so it was nice to see him stretch for this (switch f/s hurricane for instance)

Bryan Herman – “Stay Gold”
-predictable, but would’ve won this site’s heart if his part stopped after the schoolyard

Tyler Bledsoe – “Hallelujiah”
-eight, nine months on and the backside tail flip-out clip still isn’t old

Rory Milanes – “This Time Tomorrow”
-partly for the song

Chewy Cannon – “Make Friends With The Colour Blue”
-felt almost like it would be unfair to stick him toward the top half of this year’s list after last year and the Adidas part, but this dude is a machine. The switch backside smith grind

Greg Myers – “Skateboarding Is Forever”
-I see some of the critiques of this dude’s style but he’s got a lot of super hard tricks and I think is probably overlooked for how vicious some of his flip tricks are

Chad Timtim – “Trio”
-The most aggressive sidewalk-cruising part of this year with a guest appearance by one of the most urban tricks, the switch pop-shove it nosegrind revert. Honorable mention to Levi Brown’s very major b/s 180 over the two poles in this same vid.

Steve Durante/Fred Gall – Seasons/Orchard web clip
-NJ’s bash brothers in what would be my vote for the best shared part

Wes Kremer – “Skateboarding Is Forever”
-As mind-melting as the Torey Pudwill part, but with more wall-rides

Brandon Westgate – “Stay Gold”
-I still have difficulty getting into his styles* but it’s hard to deny all the San Francisco hill-blazing

Feel like Leo Romero returned the SOTY race to where it ought to be, that is, a genuinely hardworking dude that most folks can get behind as elevating the trick and/or gnarliness bar while being fairly representative of skating current and/or enduring themes — in Leo’s case you get a sometimes subtlely dazzling angle on handrail skating, a satisfactory anti-social demeanor and often a cowboy hat or a moustache, which you know, Chris Cole won it twice these past few years, and I don’t remember him getting behind cowboy hats like that. These are the weighty issues I feel are at stake when Thrasher/Phelps appear to be edging dangerously toward giving the one award that matters to some pampered television personality, and in the process totally fucking up my fragile worldview.

Wouldn’t even pretend that I’ve seen enough photos to pick out a “best of the year” or anything, but this Yaje Popson SSBSTS had all the elements.

Special mention to all rocket scientist video surgeons at Krooked who managed to not only make the first 3D skate dvd, but to execute it with a minimum of heavy-handed editing and sanctimoniousness that probably would’ve sapped the silly fun out of such a project with a lot of slow-mo if it had fallen to somebody like Ty Evans. On a related note, this blog (also predictably) fell into the camp viewing the annual TWS video project contest as a terrific hose-job for the Etnies effort, so here’s a link to that if you missed it.

*it’s a personal problem, I realize

4. Eli Reed – “Zoo York State of Mind”

December 27, 2009

Eli Reed switch kickflipped into New York’s courthouse bank in a display of sexual prowess that earned him his choice of mates and long-delayed professional status from the Zoo board of directors late this year. Fate sometimes seems to align against this dude, what with whoever was in charge over there sandbagging his part with BTO’s ode to the union movement, and the faintly snarky way people keep bringing up that amazing Celtics outfit he used to rock. Not to be that guy, but the ollie up the curb at the beginning of the part is sort of beautiful, and you can’t hold down someone who’s intent on nollie nosemanualing into a crazy bank and then switch ollieing into a second bank that also is crazy. One of the great things about this part and Eli Reed in general is that he’s all over the place in more ways than one (switch bigspin flip nose manual, hardflip manual on that banked ledge), and here’s hoping he has some shit in that new Converse/Thrasher vid which I have not yet seen so we’re counting it for next year’s tiresome list-making, FYI.

Burden of Proof

May 23, 2009


You know, they could’ve called this video “The Storm II”

I have this one theory that little kids who come out of nowhere with legitimately amazing skateboard skills are more prone to suffer haterism because, to some observers, they cheapen what it is to have that level of control and power over their board — I’m thinking here of Danny Way, Willy Santos, Bastien Salabanzi, Paul Rodriguez, there’s probably lots of examples. There’s something about seeing a veteran like Eric Koston or Heath Kirchart backside noseblunt a handrail when nobody’s ever done it before, but when four months later some shortcakes am from a flyovoer state comes along and does it, some of the gravitas is sapped from the situation, for better or worse.

That’s not so much the issue with “Proof,” the heir apparent to the Paul Rodriguez-helmed “Forecast” video from a few years back that introduced the world to Ronson Lambert, Nick McLouth and Mike “Boss Stooge” Capaldi. Mostly it’s just kinda boring. Half-there editing concepts and some pretty abysmal music that continues the Ty Evans tradition of lifting from whatever was on Pitchfork’s BNM a year ago don’t help, but mostly it’s the skating, where a lot super-hard tricks come off all bland and forgettable, at least for me. I’m sure agent-to-the-energy drink stars, ex-snowboard pro and “Proof” executive producer Circe Wallace disagrees, but then again, I’m a windbag blogger with numerous brain problems.

Nate Principato gets set up for the Mike Mo spot and fittingly does a lot of the same sort of tricks, i.e. hardflips, switch heelflips, et cetera, sometimes looking like somebody stuck Chris Cole’s head on a Sk8Mafia body. He gives the new edition of the Med Choice gap a workout and has some good tricks, like a different-looking ‘forward flip’ and a switch frontside 360, but it was tough to get into this part. Same with the little kid one-two punch of Stevie Perez and Gatorade phenom Chaz Ortiz, taking his Dew Tour skills to the streets with predictable results, and a last trick that may have Gailea Momolu contemplating a summer contest circuit comeback.

Pivot-happy German S.K.A.T.E. threat Alex Mizurov pops up in the montage, perpetuating the European white-hat stereotype, alongside Theotis Beasely, Moose and the amazing Marquis Preston who I really wish would’ve had a part in this. Also magic-footed half-pint Mark Sucio, bizarrely tech and one of the few little kids I’d actually like to see more of in this or any video.

“Proof” picks up with Josh Grossguth, who loves manuals, sags his pants and has a kind of an unshowered weed-dealer style; this part made me want to do crooked grinds, which is something, and it leads into Keelan Dadd, who does great DGK tricks like frontside flip nosegrind reverts and great non-DGK tricks like 50-50in’ this rail to a big drop. Awesome parts also from Sammy Baptista and Darrell Stanton as well, which depressed me for reasons entirely separate from the skating–Baptisa rips with a Venture “Awake” shirt on and continues to make the case for his ultimate goofy-ness whereas Stanton rifles through nolle frontside noseslides and backside noseblunts that could’ve come out of “Free Your Mind.” No, mostly I got bummed thinking of how these dudes are the ‘old dudes’ in this video.

My own fast-approaching senility aside, right after Terell Robinson kickflip lipslides a big rail to an amazingly wimpy song that Jamie Thomas never would’ve approved, Torey Pudwill shares another MGMT-powered part with Justin Schulte and another dude. With all the techery and poofy haircuts it’s kind of hard to tell who’s who at certain times, but aside from a backside tailslide bigspin across that long kinked ledge, Pudwill brings most of the highlights: tall b/s tail on the winder ledge, high jump to backside smith grind, feeble kickflip out, then looking to knock MJ out the box with a closer trick that rivals some of Joey Brezinski’s longest-named moves. That ledge has to be caked with at least an inch of wax and urethane at this point.