Posts Tagged ‘polo shirts’

The Kickflipping, Hovering, Masher-Upper Jit Of The Month

June 3, 2023

In the mid-00s, a period in which boot-cut denims briefly passed into fashion and the powers of Gulf Wax were being pushed and rubbed further than ever before, a new cadre of musical pirates took the charts by storm using little more than their laptops and a nose for the aural peanut butter-n-chocolate combos to be plucked from other artists’ hit singles and sleeper jams. These mash-up specialists dug deeply into backcatalogues for head-bobbing and amusing juxtapositions like Nirvana, Young Jeezy, Sinead O’Connor and Webbie, until running aground after the vaguely nautical sounding ‘plunderphonics’ genre drained its aquifer of sample material.

In the skateboarding sphere in the year of 2023, one has to try mightily hard to deliver a musical-supervision curveball, when you have folks freely skating to ska bands and Blink 182, and the more varied and adventurous the clothing, the better. Tricks though are a different story, where even several generations into the ‘everybody can do every trick’ era, the most straightforward path remains playing to genre. To catch people off guard means digging deep in the archives, thinking flexibly, lacing the ball with multiple layers of Spider tac snd saliva.

Now comes Florida’s Nikolai Piombo, of the swishy pant and lower case polo getup, lately of amateur status on WKND Boards Co. In last month’s pleasing ‘Jit’ video, Nikolai Piombo applies heavily the curved-ledge filter to the squad’s vaunted pin reservoir, most impressively on a crispy caught and locked fakie flip switch crooked grind, but also most impressively on a backside tailslide hop over to backside smith grind. There are some crushing manuals, pre-art collector Jay-Z music and an appearance by the Suski grind, but while passing through Barcelona’s Sants, Nikolai Piombo casts back to a couple different eras to formulate a truly rare bird that would seem to be termed a ‘kickflip hover slide.’

All the way back in 1994, the precursor to the Quartersnacks Top 10 arrived every two months via 411 Video Magazine’s opener section, mainly in slow mo and soundtracked to the jaunty ‘Boxcar’ tune. In one of the more confounding entries of that year, Mad Circle comer-upper Scott Johnston ollied up for what initially appeared a backside tailslide at SF’s Brown Marble, except his wheels scooted along on top of the ledge, before popping off in the traditional fashion. Its like would not be seen again for nearly a decade, until Stefan Janoski slid not one but two versions of the trick in his seminal ‘Moasic’ section, one across the top of a bench and another on a ledge in a line. Since then it has remained a rarity, though of course the Sour dudes broke one out at one point, also at Sants.

Asked about it a few years back on the Bunt, Stefan Janoski termed it a ‘hover slide’: ”I started trying to do them and Biebel was like what ‘what fuck is that shit?’ I was like ‘no, I got it from Scott Johnston.’”

Nikolai Piombo’s take on the trick, kickflipping into it, also echoes the early 2000s handrail era. As pants slimmed, rawk was cranked and ever-larger targets were hunted, an efficient if risky way to raise the bar was to tack on a kickflip to a boardslide, 50-50, or other trick, as memorably captured in Jon Allie’s ‘Dying to Live’ barrage.

Is the frontside blunt/backside tail version of the Johnston/Janoski hover-slide the only real acceptable one, with others veering into booger-slide territory? What about a backside noseblunt/frontside noseslide version? The ollie over to frontside bluntslide, as done by Gideon Choi, Darrell Stanton and Mark Suciu in the midst of his Skater O The Year run, should be considered a different trick right? What about a shove-it in, or out?

Summertime Mixtape Vol. 7 — Aquil Brathwaite, ‘Vicious Cycle’

July 6, 2019

Ignore for a minute the incongruity that goes with soundtracking an East Coast kid in an East Coast vid to ‘California Soul’ — in its way it functions as a leading indicator of Zoo’s geographical and mercantile wanderings under the ‘00s Ecko regime. Like all things summertime it’s really about the vibe. Aquil Brathwaite stepped out as a young charger with bottomless energy for snapping trick after trick across pretty much all the media-friendly New York spots going at the time and then some, pushing and pushing and popping something new with the same cocktail of freewheeling ability and youthful exhuberance brought by ‘WHL’-era PJ Ladd and ‘Trilogy’-era Lavar McBride. Maybe fitting for a dude whose most memorable footage came on his arrival, Aquil Brathwaite’s powers at the time were such that he avoided little-kid style even on certified little-kid tricks like the varial flip, and this section remains a document for all seeking truth in switch ollies, kickflip backside 5-0s and hardflip backside 180s.