Posts Tagged ‘Keelan Dadd’

Kids

December 17, 2012

knox

Billions of burgers flipped by McDonald’s Corp., five decades’ worth of James Bond movies and the estimated $100 million net worth of Wayne “Mr. Entertainment” Newton bear witness to how consistency and a reliable product can command a loyal clientele and lucrative following, if not adoring devotion and the occasional soiled thong hurled upon a pockmarked Las Vegas stage. Jeron Wilson, Chico Brenes and Mike Carroll seem to understand that there is and likely always will be an audience for specialized heelflips, nollie heelflips and backside smith grinds, even while those such as Gino Iannucci and Anthony Pappalardo can’t seem to bring themselves to keep playing the hits year in and out.

Whereas technology setpieces of “Pretty Sweet” invested heavily in the wow factor, DGK’s full-length debut, arriving after a series of mixtape-like one-offs and features like Kayo’s “It’s Official,” offers few surprises. A DGK customer knows what he’s paying for — although the “Chocolate Tour” as reimagined by Harmony Korine storyline here heaps disdain upon paying for what otherwise can be racked or heisted — and Stevie Williams & co seem to have put years of work into delivering this, an overlong, guest-heavy, ready-made blockbuster willing to elbow aside wimpier videos for a spot as the successor to, if not the culmination of, vids such as “20-Shot Sequence,” “Tantrum,” “2nd To None,” “Ryde or Die Vol. 1” and “Street Cinema.” When 2 Chainz comes on here it is more earnest than when used by dudes hopping bars in Queens wearing twill trousers.

For an hour, DGK’s “Parental Advisory” glories in loudmouth rap music, camouflage pants*, gunfire, cameos from skate-rap touchstones such as Kareem Campbell, Fabian Alomar, Steven Cales, DMX and Beanie Siegel, shoplifting, loose-fit denim, shiny chains and hat-tags fluttering in the breeze, wife beaters, small wheels, graffiti, and some jack moves. For those paying attention there are references to the Menace intro in “Trilogy,” the Bones Brigade in “Police Academy” and even a much-beloved pre-Slap message board pro-skater-dies meme.

No one will look to this video to register on the ATV meter but in the trick department DGK too delivers as promised: Josh Kalis and Stevie Williams skate Love Park; Josh Kalis unloads his monster 360 flip and Stevie Williams cracks some switch heelflips. Wade Desarmo, one of those Canadians who maybe fell a little too far in love with tall tees over the past decade, stacks heavy-lidded picnic-table tech including a hazed-out hardflip backside 5-0 and an alley-oop frontside flip that ranks among the best in a year when Andrew Reynolds put out a video. Marcus McBride turns in a full section that ought to make any pro with a board out for longer than 10 years sit up and prepare an excuse and Rodrigo TX, who has quietly been on a non-stop hustle these past five years, loudly reps the defunct Es shoes company and snaps a terrific looking switch kickflip over a rail. Some of these newer kids with all the “D” names blurred for me, but Keelan Dadd has poise and good runs like the one with the switch kickflip frontside boardslide. Lenny Rivas, who made a serious run at Knox Godoy status himself, has gone grown man and turns a couple new helicopters onto the handrails. My vote for best-dressed dude in the skate game Jack Curtin comes through late in the vid and wrecks shop with some incomprehensible tricks like a switch shove-it 5-0 on a rail up against a wall and his hairball switch backside lipslide down the Clipper ledge.

Probably there always will be like-minded dudes out there doing it like Brandon Biebel but the clarity of purpose Stevie Williams puts to “Parental Advisory” sometimes makes it seem like he’s carrying a whole subset of the 1990s on his back here — nods given to all these little-seen skaters and rappers, a lengthy skater-on-skater-crime narrative that picks up where the Menace video that would never come left off in “Trilogy,” even going so far earlier this year as to deliver a Fabian Alomar part time-capsuled in from 1996, and then achieving the seemingly impossible by getting Kareem Campbell to commit to a skate project**. Coming out a month after “Pretty Sweet” secured DGK an underdog status they probably relish, and the fact that every dude on the team managed to turn in more or less a full section can be read as an endorsement of any number of those motivational platitudes embroidered onto DGK baseball hats, but it’s probably too much to ask this company to cop to now-certified overachiever status.

*of several persuasions
**no knock on the work that went into that song but the Crailtap dudes might’ve just happened to catch him at the store

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.