Posts Tagged ‘rare’

John Shanahan, Chopped and Sewed on the Final Frontier

May 28, 2017

Some weeks back a video Youtube link circulated advertising an attempted backside 360 down the famed El Toro stair set, the sort of heart-testing maneuver around which you’d either anticipate a fire-legged professional like Chris Joslin’s name attached, or else some risk-friendly unknown ready to offer up his effort to the world as some type of return on a foolhardy willingness to get uniquely pitched and presumably walk away. It was surprisingly convincing try — they say the last quarter spin is the moneymaker when hurling one’s self down twenty steps or more — and it rolls above a disclaimer revealing that the bros involved “might not go back for this” and various other pink-panted jumps and things.

But is it so easy? Many of skating’s seemingly most harebrained ideas have proven shockingly hard to let go. Duane Peters’ tangles with the fibreglass loop captivated a world-conquering Tony Hawk in his video game-designing prime, and assorted others after its bullring subduing. Jamie Thomas’ “leap of faith” drew Richard King to test his luck before the Point Loma school board took matters into their own hands and constructed a solid platinum elevator in one of this young century’s most stunning acts of baller-blockingism. In test fittings for the MegaRampTM crown, Bob Burnquist discovered that he, like propellerheaded originator Danny Way, could no longer resist the uniquely arousing allure of skating helicopters. Aaron Homoki’s taming of Lyon’s most notorious 25 stairs, 13 years after Ali Boulala charted its glide path en route to part-ending slams, became fodder for a Thrasher mini-doc.

Steeped in early ‘ESTs’, Flexfitted hats and the colour yellow, John Shanahan seems more concerned with resuscitating a specific vibe and era than etching his multisyllabic rhyming surname into history’s annals via big-spot trophy hunting. Bubbling under the DGK umbrella for a minute, John Shanahan this week officially arrives on the DC Shoes payroll via a cracking intro clip that pointedly trots out the bold/less bold/standard font DCSHOECOUSA logo of old along with eastern seaboard spots rinsed and fresh. Between the DC one and a separate LurkNYC VX footage dump, John Shanahan flexes backside nosegrind pop-outs, a slicing 360 flip out of the Kalis school, some tricks outta the modern school’s playbook (driveway wallride, ride-on tailslide kickflip), some flamboyantly retro Droors gear and hubba noseslides. Toeing some blurry line between ‘Photosynthesis’ and ‘The Storm,’ he wields a serious switch k-grind and a judicious use of camouflage, which is rare to see these days.

Like Philly neighbors Kevin Bilyeu and Brian Panebianco, it’s easy and erroneous to pigeonhole John Shanahan’s shared enthusiasm for the numbers 07 and 43 and all their sportsweary accoutrements as retroactivism rooted in personal branding. Just as the Sabotage dudes unearthed, resurfaced and restored an entire scene that had been municipally buried and professionally abandoned, John Shanahan seems to harbour deeper ambitions. Sharpening cut and sew skills, where else, on Instagram, John Shanahan demonstrates enough technical proficiency and stylistic nerve to construct cargo and swishy pants that command triple-digit price tags and earn “levels” hash tags when positioned alongside skaters’ current affection for graphical sweatpants and other sub-waistline achievements. But as he tests his growing powers, is John Shanahan consciously or not flying too close to that blazing sun of skate pants fashiondom, the two-toned pant?

It is a stylistic Leap of Faith that has shadowed previous practitioner Garrett Hill throughout his sponsored career, and one not lightly rolled up to. A year after Garrett Hill’s pants debuted in video footage, Tim O’Connor gleefully went in. Eight years on, the pants’ impression lingered enough that former teammates would bring them up as a cautionary tale of judgment, hubris and star-crossed romance:

Tom Karangelov: But when there’s someone that’s so original and out there, he gets so much shit. It’s crazy. Like with Garrett [Hill], half red half black pants. People are still talking to him about that. But dude, was it really that big of a deal? They are just fucking pants. Aren’t you encouraged to be creative when you skateboard? The dude who tries to go out of the box gets like, so much shit for it.

Jenkem: Have you ever considered wearing “crazy pants” like that?
Ah, no.

Has an Adidas-supported revolution in swishy pants and increasingly garish sweats provided enough air cover for John Shanahan to push pants envelope in ever-more colourful envelopes? Which trick ranks higher in terms of ’90s/east-coastness, the backside 5-0 backside 180 out or the fakie backside nosegrind shove-it? Yall caught that one switch backside heelflip over and down the blocks right? How is the resurrected Alien Workshop not sponsoring at least one of these ‘Photosynthesis’ acolytes? You been keeping an eye on Brian Wenning’s Instagram right?

Rogue States And Freelance Despots Retain Consultant To Evaluate Lasting Effects Of Jesse Erickson’s Part In The “Man Down” Video

May 30, 2013

To me the pantheon of great tall-guy skaters like BA, Kenny Hughes and Andrew Reynolds reserves a spot for Tilt Moder Jesse Erickson, especially when it comes to tech merchants such as Rob Welsh. Before beard farming, Santa Cruz talent-wrangling and giant iron-wrought pentagrams came into vogue, Jesse Erickson was surfing out of ledge tricks at speed, with the occasional lewd conduct happening in the background or even more occasionally in the foreground. His section in “Black Cat” seems to have vanished into the great internet vaporizer but the above part from “Man Down” is just as good, offering a rarely seen varial flip out of a backside tailslide, a backside noseblunt transfer to regular and a yeoman’s switch wallie. Always thought the passionate hurling of the garbage can during one of his lines here ranked as some kind of ‘defining moment’ for the TMA.

*and, he’s got one out of a frontside blunt in the OG Tilt Mode.

Ohhhhhhhhhh, Ohhhhhhhhhh, Ohhhhhhhhhhhh, Ohhhhhhhhhh

May 5, 2009


“Radio killa”

In the above video for “My Love,” the main single from The-Dream’s critically valued 2009 CD “Love vs. Money” The-Dream attempts to press home the point to a befuddled Mariah Carey that “it takes time to get money,” likely a thankless and futile task given the widely rumored fact that Mariah lost her damn mind back in the Glitter era and could well continue to wander in her own mental wilderness, and you know what else, who fries sausages and eggs in the same pan. Yet you have to admire The-Dream’s determination, if not the impression that he is on the verge of taking that frying pan upside Mariah’s head, to make her understand that it takes time to get money.

This is one of many themes of control that The-Dream, who seems overweight and may own several houses, explores in “Love vs. Money,” a powerful work that insists upon a man’s place and how he is utlimately powerlessness before the persistence of time when there is money needing to be gotten. Hinting at the two great American eventualities, the fact that The-Dream is willing to lie, cheat, steal and beguile in his pursuit of money probably is beside the point. More critical is the constraints of a mortal life and the limits this inevitably places on money getting and several other activities, including but not limited to Mariah Carey features and R&B beefs with man-about-award-shows Chris Brown, who has vowed to destroy The-Dream’s career at all costs.

Back to the video though, is Mariah Carey’s confusion or refusal to accept The-Dream’s argument intentional? Who can tell — she has suffered from “exhaustion” in the past after all — but it sure doesn’t make his job any easier. He is a tortured man who is racing against the clock always as he tries to get money and keep Mariah under his thumb. (For the record we all know he is just playing a character, okay)

Nike’s skateboarding division touched similar touchy touchstones in “Nothing But the Truth” a couple years back, in a series of nigh-unwatchable skit segments that rapidly ascended to the top of skateboarding’s most-skipped sections just behind Jordan Richter’s contribution to the Blind video. And rightly so, but I’m not sure Nike got as much credit as they were due for the sheer weirdness (hubris?) involved in that whole effort. Though I have no particular effort to try and wrap my brain around some of those skits ever again when there’s that Landscape video to watch, I do sometimes think about what they were trying to do with that skit where Reese Forbes runs into the fog and returns a different yet still flannelled man entirely.

But as they keep pumping out the internet videos I gotta say I kind of like the way Nike moves, as much as it vaguely saddens me to shuffle into the park and see the swoosh adorning every other kid’s feet. Ten years ago people were coming up to Tony Hawk after the premiere of “The End” and saying they hadn’t seen a video like that since the Bones Brigade era, and I think Nike has the potential to do some similar sort of high-concept thing, provided they rein in whatever ad agency cooks up the theme for their next full-length production.

In the meantime there’s been a slew of sweet clips on their site recently like this “120 minutes”-esque clip with Matt Beach, Al Partenen, Daniel Shimizu and Chet Childress tilting at sketchy warehouse rigs; last week they had this Dan Magee-directed clip from Italy featuring a heap of Euros like the man Luy Pa-Sin, lots of backside flips and interesting angles. The usual complaints about slow-mo HD footage aside, these are alright, but I’ve got higher hopes for their Debacle amateur video, which may or may not be a no-bullshit endeavor with ripping Grant Taylor footage etc. but will be Nike’s first big attempt to redirect their creative ocean-liner after encountering the “NBTT” iceberg. Forecast clear to partly cloudy…