Posts Tagged ‘Steve Durante’

Are You People Paying Attention To The Things Jackson Curtin Is Doing Right Now?

November 2, 2019

This photo should be enough. Great skater, super hard trick, exactly the right angle, tweaked to the maximum, pants right. Time was, you’d painstakingly tear out a page like this one in the Milton Martinez Thrasher and tape it onto the wall. That still happens, but the time for wall-staring slowly is passing into shadow. Soon enough, our walls will stare at themselves.

The photo’s primal waves lead to another, more fundamental question, which is whether the swipe-happy, dead-eyed and flesh-consuming populace is giving Jack Curtin his proper due. In a world that criminally overlooked Ryan Gallant’s late-period surge, only now seems to be appreciating the treasure that is Javier Sarmiento, and failed to elevate Steve Durante to household name status, it is not an idle question.

A seminal technician with international flair and an allergy to basic-ass T-shirts, Jackson Curtin approaches the 2020s a seasoned veteran, but from ‘Pack a Lunch’ onward he seems never to have blown up relative to the skill and stylistic levels implied. Last year, he switch kickflip wallrode and switch backside noseblunted a chunky hubba for the ever-inscrutable Skate Mental label. This year he slid through New York for the Gridlock series, ripped Pier 7 and the SF Library amid the broader SF reinvigoration GX1000 set off in the hills and Supreme carried to EMB, and last week he slapped up trickblockers and put a noseblunt onto the Carroll/Chico block-to-block list for his most recent New Balance shoe design, centered on the increasingly on-burn black and clear colour scheme.

Is everybody properly savouring the current Jackson Curtin moment? Can the collective powers of Jack Curtin, Tyler Surrey, Tom Knox and recent DC Shoe Co USA defector Tiago Lemos unite to somehow make it cool to wear grandpa shoes with with a big letter N on the side? What are the odds Jack Curtin could get back to Pulaski for a joint part with Bobby Worrest? Should Paul Rodriguez, dealing with Primitive’s steadily expanding roster, spend some of his Naruto duckets on the apparently still existing Deca and put on Jack Curtain, JB Gillet, Daewon Song and fuck it, Carlos Iqui?

Head Cleaner

October 7, 2012

Probably it’s a good thing that after a half-decade’s worth of footwear purveyours collectively issuing the same half-dozen models adorned with various logos, and the seven-ply hot dog holding sway for at least three times that long, it is a plus that a subculture stretched thin by recession and embracing a certain amount of commoditization retains enough crankiness and spark to gnash message-board teeth over perceived biting. And so it is that we take heart in the internet tizzy fermented by the debut of Politic, which devotees of the “Static II” aesthetic immediately scrutinized over similarities to UK phenom Palace, what with their comparable names, repurposing of analog video machines, and triangular logos that come on t-shirts with a little version over the left breast zone and a big version on the back.

Some may call it ironic that for a subset whose pride in cellar doors, wallies, natural and/or abrupt transition and certain other unconventional landforms got it pasted as “creative” here and there now seems clearly to be eating its own tail, but there’s potentially a murkier kind of food chain being linked together here.* Palace came in for accolades from this and other quarters when it emerged as a synthesis of Silverstar, Illuminati and “Time Code” era AWS, transplanted to overcast U.K. backwaters and dubbed over on VHS tape. Politic’s initial look cribs from the same playbook and you could read in some nods to Blueprint circa “Lost & Found.” But whereas Palace a year or two into its run dialed the nostalgia-meter back to 1995 with a big, sloppy kiss to the Menace segment in “20-Shot Sequence,” Politic may be trying not to join Palace but to beat them in their golden-age tribute-payments, its supposed take-off on Palace itself a take-off on the World-led wave of logo swipes that pervaded the early 90s?

The invisible hand of the free market will determine whether domestic and international consumers will catch feelings over this episode, embiggen their hearts to allow room for competition in the subgroup or ultimately cast both into the vast sale pile that sits below the deck wall in the skate shop of the great beyond. What is not up for debate is that Steve Durante seemingly has a long-overdue professional model and the lure of new footage, in these longer and colder autumn days, that right there is enough to warm the cockles of even the most cold-hearted capitalist.

*Others would challenge this statement and say that the staters don’t have a good grasp on the actual definition of ironic, driving additional unique visitors to Dictionary.com.

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

Brick Squad

August 21, 2009

The power of Steve Durante’s switch frontside heelflip compels you to go skating this weekend. Via this Slap “Foto” feature

It’s Partly the Pants, I Think

April 1, 2009

Now this is pretty old in internet time, but I feel it’s worth posting as A. I was kind of lazy about putting it up when it was current and B. a whole 45 days or so later the tricks are still all pretty much nutty. I haven’t decided yet for sure, but I was thinking about saddling up and riding for this kid all year long similar to how I fawned over Jake Johnson last year and Steve Durante the year before that (I was pulling for Justin Schulte a while back, but the JR Blastoff Neighborhood part was less than I had hoped for).

Now Habitat may or may not be a more interesting company if they had put Nicholson on ahead of, say, Marius Syvanen, but I’m confident things will work out one way or the other for the young Pennsylvanian. And if they don’t, well, then he’ll live on in YouTube glory, having spared himself a career fraught with the temptation to don energy drink New Eras, swim the fickle waters of footwear sponsorship and shore up ailing street cred via facial tattoos*. While there are grimmer fates than working a straight job, Nicholson is talented enough and a reasonable time has passed since somebody came up with a good Tom Penny resurrection, so he should be good.

  • which are permanent

5. Steve Durante, “Last of the Mohicans”

December 26, 2008

Even though they don’t really make money anymore the blockbuster skate video model continues to hold, at least until somebody thinks up a better idea, and with every major pro skateboarder (or at least the 100 or so with signature model shoes) stockpiling footage for a coming-soon-in-2010 release you don’t often see the quick little parts that were popular in the 1990s, which was due to weed smoking, the shitty slow-mo available at the time, general laziness, Barcelona having yet to be discovered, and the quick-cut lifestyle shot still a few TWS videos away. So you got stuff like Jason Dill’s “Trilogy” section, Sheffey’s part in “Mouse,” or RB Umali’s “Peep This” which you could say was a whole video based on this idea.

Steve Durante, who made probably my favorite video part last year between the Habitat video and Static 3, kept the ball rolling this year with a brief entry in Joe Perrin’s “Last of the Mohicans”… I don’t know if this is throwaway stuff from some upcoming Adidas production or just his daily grind but it’s as good as any of the other shit he’s done in the last couple of years: all the sick two-hitter lines, the flat-ground kickflip at 1:19, and even though he milks it in every part, the switch backside tailslide heelflip out, except this time on a thigh-high ledge. On a semi-related note, Kyle Nicholson needs to come up in 2009.

Metal Militia

October 12, 2008

Steve Durante’s new Habitat ad is even more impressive when you consider the fact that he took time off from recording “Death Magnetic” to land the trick.

Killa season

May 10, 2008

Joe Perrin’s Killa Tapes put up a new trailer for his new video “Last of the Mohicans” about a week ago and I’ve been meaning to post about it. From what I can tell the lineup’s really expanded since I first heard about it, which is to say, it’s gotten much more awesomer. Who knows how many tricks the big names will actually put into this, but either way, Perrin always gets the best Florida dudes and he has a way of putting videos together where there’s enough bullshit to keep things entertaining, but (usually) the pace of the thing doesn’t get all bogged down.

Sober or not, Fred Gall is on some kind of mission these last couple years, and footage from Jimmy Lannon/Al Butters/Dave Caddo/Steve Durante will kick off the summer pretty good, provided this production actually comes out in June. In the parlance of skate videos we can probably interpret that to mean August, and since we know how they do down in Florida, maybe back it up to November. At that point why not just wait for Xmas? Also Perrin seems to be sitting on some Danny Renaud footage, which tends to age like fine wine. Maybe he should just sit on it for another 40 years and put it all out when he feels like retiring. If people are paying thousands for old 80s decks on Ebay right now, who knows how much fresh Renaud footage could fetch in 2050. Don’t forget to factor in inflation and $125/barrel oil.