SURF SKATE SNOW TRAVEL MUSIC FILM ART FASHION
MORE THAN JUST THE RIDE
TONY HAWK “I’M JUST ONE SKATER” GENERATION NOW: JAMIE ANDERSON PLUS: SHAUN WHITE
BIG WAVES 23
TREVOR ANDREW MIKKEL BANG KEIR DILLON ROMAIN DE MARCHI JP SOLBERG HEIKKI SORSA HANNAH TETER
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the big stories contents. huck #004 ▼
40 TONY HAWK pro skateboarder. full stop. 50 ALPINE LIFE the workaday world of snowboarding. by jorn tomter. 58 THE NOISETTES sit up, take note: they rock. 64 MOUNTAIN MAN they don’t make ‘em like they used to. 68 JAMAICAN SURF melody in the water. 70 JEREMY REEVES former chef, skating pro. 74 BIG-WAVE OREGON the world’s loneliest surf contest.
78 SNOWBOARD ART the talent behind the decks. 84 STUFF shiny, pretty things. 86 REGGAE MUSIC it’s a love-hate thing. 92 DANNY BOYLE on his new sci-fi flick, sunshine. 96 PARADOX SURFING the hierarchy of riding waves. 100 CASTING TIME polaroid fashion. 106 AFTER THE HURRICANE dystopian adventures in day-glo.
©ASP / COVEREDIMAGES
the front 18 north shore 20 danny davis 22 jamie anderson 24 farryl purkiss 26 anthony claravall 28 shark spotters 30 surfrider hawaii 32 malloys on bikes 34 henning marthinsen 36 verte 38 jordy smith
contents. huck #004
Eric Lars Bakke/Shazamm/ESPN
116 winter x games 118 downhill skating 120 albums 122 films 124 dvds 126 games 128 books 130 twilight tide
Terje Haakonsen Geraldine Fasnacht Thomas Diet
MAT REBEAUD David Benedek Jeremy Jones Frederik Kalbermatten Christian „Hitsch“ Haller Phil Meier Xavier De le rue Jan Scherrer Cody Townsend Kaj Zackrisson Sverre Lillequist Sam Lamiroy
vol. 01 issue 004 HUCK MAGAZINE
March/April 2007 www.huckmagazine.com
Vince Medeiros Global Editor
Art Direction and Design
www.thechurchoflondon.com Snow Editor
Phil Hebblethwaite Translations Editor
Danny Miller Text
Tracey Armstrong, Sandow Birk, Catherine Bray, Jesse Faen, Will Henry, Miles Masterson, Jay Riggio, Cyrus Shahrad, Alex Wade Images
Sandow Birk, Damea Dorsey, Phillip Grisewood, Will Henry, Lee Hooper, Josh Kimball, Emmanuel Krebs, Miles Masterson, Annabel Mehran, Adam Moran, Jorn Tomter, Pat Vermeulen, Tadashi Yandoda, Kevin Zacher
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Photos © Alex Franklin
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ever text and photography Jamie Brisick
The North Shore of Hawaii: even Bono was there this year. Things
different from last year: The scale of it all. The fact that surfing’s cross-pollinating with the big time. Eddie Vedder playing Waimea Falls. Bono walking the beach at Off The Wall. Daryl Hannah dining at Lei Lei’s. The demise of Kammies Market, a North Shore icon since the seventies. Four fins at Sunset. A kind of right sandbar at Pipeline. Some things never change: eighty-something-year-old Waikiki beach boy Rabbit Kekai as Triple Crown beach marshal. Shaun Tomson’s dramatic Off The Wall barrels. The addictive ahi poke at Kahuku Superette. Break-ins involving cars and houses along Ke Nui Road. Owl Chapman in his Toyota mini-wagon with Dick Brewer, single fin strapped to the roof. Breakfast in a Barrel at Café Haleiwa. Big, jacked-up local boy trucks. And then a few snapshots. Joel Tudor walks down the beach at Pipe with the grace of Gerry Lopez, airbrushed fish under arm. His transition from land to water is seamless. He immediately catches a hulking set wave. He gets barreled, comes out. His lines are all economy of movement. He wears no leash. He never loses his board. Minutes after sundown he peddles along the bike path, again with board under arm, same languid grace — no motors, no legropes, a holistic, accessoryless life. Once upon a time the North Shore was about fifteen men to every woman. You had to be careful about who you chatted up. Either that or carry a very large boulder in your backpack. Today they arrive in droves all perfumed and Roxy’d out, hoping to catch a few waves and meet some fine dudes. Word gets out and the whole thing snowballs, getting more diverse and interesting with every twirl. Today the North Shore is a thriving social scene with shit to do seven nights a week. In fact, the parties and dinners and barstool banter can easily upstage the surf, which is ironic considering its Quonset hut, ‘Church of the Open Sky’ beginnings, when tide and swell ruled the roost rather than Red Bull and vodka. We’re drunk, they’re drunk, everybody’s drunk drunk. A reggae band plays in the corner of this North Shore sports bar turned sloshfest, the room is chockablock and hot as fuck. And much the same way Bed-Stuy erupts on the hottest day of the summer in Do The Right The Thing, the mugginess only heightens tensions. Look not into the eyes of the 250-pound dude. Stares held for more than two seconds are the equivalent of saying, “I’ll kick yo ass right here right now” in Hawaii. And as the night rolls on, it becomes more like just the slightest glance. Which may explain the ambulance, police car, gloating overfed local cracking his knuckles, and three haole military guys laid out on the ground when I leave the joint. Fists speak a thousand words on the island the mainland raped, especially when alcohol’s involved. Lee Anne Curren floats across a Gums lip, Ford Archbold smacks a Pupukea lip, Kolohe Andino ducks behind a Backdoor curtain, Mason Ho buries serious rail at Sunset. Salt water seeps into the skin, enters the bloodstream and drips down the generations. The North Shore’s future will be marked by names we’ve all heard before.
ra dar 1: dannY davis text Zoe oksanen photography adam moran
heaDS aRe TuRNINg, eyeS aRe opeNINg up wIDe. If I had written this a year
ago, you might be asking me who Danny Davis actually is. Not now though, as Danny – leader in a new generation of snowboarders – is blasting through the elite pack of pros all the way to the top, or at least near enough to make heads do some serious turning. It’s like he had come out of nowhere. All of a sudden Danny morphed from virtual unknown to the rider chasing Shaun White’s heels at the 2006 US Open Half Pipe contest, coming in at second place. He got his taste of gold at the Nippon Open Half Pipe contest last year, won the first Grand Prix event of the season and then showed us he had no intention of slowing down in 2007, going for frontside 1260s at the Honda Sessions in Vail. Danny has style, talent and everything it takes to be number one. But what I like most about Danny is Danny. When he walks into the room, it comes alive. He is always bursting with enthusiasm for life, whether it be for the peanut butter and jelly sandwich he is constantly making or the run he just put down in the half pipe. Another thing I like about Danny is how he got to where he is today. Unlike so many US pros, Danny didn’t come from a rich family. “My first pro
event was in Breckenridge,” he recalls. “I didn’t know anyone and went there with my mum. Since the hotel room was expensive, we bought two loaves of bread for the week and ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. After I won $800, we went out for a steak dinner!” At the 2007 Winter X Games all eyes were on Danny. Did he feel the heat? “I don’t normally feel too much pressure in contests, but in the X Games I did,” he admits. “With the Olympic qualifiers I didn’t feel it until they thought I was in. That’s when it hit me – and that’s when I blew it. This time round, the slopestyle finals were pretty nerve wracking.“ The nerves didn’t hold Danny back, though. He still managed to pull off a sick cab 900, backside 700, frontside 900 and front 1080. If he hadn’t dragged his hand on one of his tricks, chances are he would have made the podium instead of finishing sixth. But it doesn’t matter. In the end, we all know it‘s just a matter of time until we see the double D brandishing his gold medal on the X Games stage. And when he does, you can bet the peanut butter will be flowing. www.expn.com
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“SKULL OF FAME“ Hoody, “FACE“ Pipe Gloves, “HIGHFLYER“ 2 Star Jacket, “DIMITRI“ 2 Star Pants
PRO: Lisa Beck, Lukas Blaser, Rolf Feldmann, Lukas Goller, Björn Hartweger, Reto Kestenholz, Christoph Weber ROOKIE: Julian Fürsinger, Maurice Gilliand, Simon Gruber, Nico Kurz, Cedric Schumacher
ra d ar 2 : am e an erson J
text Zoe oksanen photography emanUel kreBs
goINg BIg. aND She’S oNly SIxTeeN.
Skipping school sometimes has its reasons. Winning the X Games Slopestyle counts as one of them. But only Jamie Anderson has rights over that excuse. Aged sixteen, Jamie made history this past January by being the youngest X Games competitor to ever take gold in the event. “I was a bit nervous because I really wanted to win, but at the same time I just told myself to have fun and enjoy it,” says Jamie. “When I was coming first after my first run I was so surprised considering I took my ‘safety run’... but everything was so rad and I’m so happy!” Jamie wasn’t the only one to feel the joy. The Andersons like to keep it in the family, and her sister, Joanie, also claimed her spot on top of the podium with a gold in the Snowboarder X. “It was crazy!“ Jamie says. “I got to watch her run right from the bottom of the slopestyle so it was cool – I saw everything. And my parents were running back and forth to watch both of us. It was such a cool experience to win
alone, but the fact that we both won was even cooler.” Jamie is taking her career seriously, but there is the small issue of school getting in the way. So are her teachers hot on her tail for homework or is she being given the space to fulfill her potential as female snowboard prodigy? “When I was at the X Games I had to mail all my schoolwork home ‘cuz I missed too much,” she says. “But my teacher is really cool and she helps me work around my crazy schedule. I am doing a few more pretty big contests and I’m going to try and film anytime in between, then I’m going home to graduate high school.” That’s a lot of planning for a sixteen-year-old. With so much under her belt already, where to now Miss Anderson? “I have no idea. I’ll just go with the flow.” She’s just ‘cruising’, then, all the way to the top. And no amount of homework is about to stand in her way. www.salomonsnowboard.com www.billabonggirls.com
farrYl purkiss text and photography miles masTerson
The maN kNowS JaCk.
Farryl Purkiss hates Jack Johnson. Okay, no, he doesn’t. In fact, the Hawaiian minstrel has influenced Farryl in more ways than one. What actually grates this otherwise amiable South African is being compared to Jack, something he has had to endure through his recent ascent to fame in his home country. “It is fucking irritating,” he gripes, “I won’t lie to you hey.” As he draws out the last word, Farryl’s smile is wry: “Now, unless they ask me, I’m not going to bring it up. I’m a surfer and I play guitar, but the media immediately stick this label on me.” Farryl reluctantly defines his music as ‘acoustic’, but his own musical taste includes obscure crossover synth, indie bands such as Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, and of course singer/songwriters such as José González and yes, Jack Johnson. Although Farryl says he hasn’t listened to the latter for a while, he recalls how he tapped into it early. “In 1998/’99, the Malloy brothers used to come to Durban and stay with my friend Bob Cherry. They spent time at Jack’s place in Hawaii and had mini discs of them jamming. We never knew who he was, it was just really cool music.” Farryl’s self-titled debut album is a collection of fourteen acoustic tracks, and whilst occasionally reminding one of Jack, they remain uniquely Farryl Purkiss. He has already been nominated for awards in his homeland, and in 2007 he is set to tour Canada, the US, Australia and the UK. But making a living from rock music is difficult in Africa. Before he got his break, Farryl had to supplement his income by modelling, which he loathed. Then in 2003 – around the time Farryl was pondering deeply whether to pack it in – his mobile rang. Farryl’s mate was on the line, urging him to get down to Durban’s Wave House pronto. “I arrived to find no one there but Peter, pointing at the DRex,” recalls Farryl. “On the right was Kelly Slater and on the left Jack Johnson.” Jack eventually saw a gobsmacked Farryl standing in the rain and introduced himself. One thing led to another and they all ended up back at Farryl’s pad, jamming. That’s when he and Jack began the rudiments of what is now one of the strongest songs on Farryl’s album, ‘Déjà Vu’. “When he left I said to myself, ‘If that is not a sign, I don’t know what is’. It was a big moment and I decided to go for it,” remembers Farryl. So, if mellow, acoustic surfer-guitar rock is your flavour, then do yourself a service, get to a Farryl Purkiss gig or check out his CD. And if you see Farryl, say what’s up bru. Just don’t call him Jack.
For a review of Farryl Purkiss’ debut album, check out page 120. Go to www.2feetmusic.com to find out more about Farryl and his confirmed European tour dates.
Photos © Alex Franklin
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The Nowhere Man text Jay Riggio
Anthony Claravall: skate filmer, rambling hitman.
My roommate lives like an assassin. No pictures on his walls, no cabinets or dressers to speak of, and barely any clothes or personal belongings to his name. To a visitor, it might appear as if he’s ready to get up and go at the abrupt drop of a six-figure murder contract. Where would he go? Anyplace his murdering little heart desires. But this hired-killer motif is nothing but a façade. Comprising a wornas-fuck passport, a digital video camera, a bundle of fresh digi tapes and a mindset as open as a cattle-grazing field, my buddy’s arsenal of weaponry is far from lethal. Thirty-four-year-old Anthony Claravall has spent the past thirteen years travelling the world and documenting that which is fully imbedded in his heart: skateboarding. What began as a contributing filmer position at the original skate video magazine 411, in time became his full-time job. Or, in Anthony’s case, his life. Claravall was born in NYC but grew up in London, Mexico City, Connecticut, Malaysia, as well as New York. In college, he and a friend put out a hardcore/skateboarding ’zine called Action Figure. But instead of shooting photos to run alongside the stories, he’d film a trick and make video-grab stills. This indirect introduction to video led to Anthony’s filming of a long list of up-and-coming locals in and around New York and New Jersey.
In ’94, Anthony became an official contributor to 411 and has remained with the company as a full-time filmer since ’99. Anthony has since become one of the industry’s best and most recognisable names in skate videography, having captured tricks and video parts for practically every major skate video in recent years. In addition to filming skateboarding for a living, Anthony’s job means he can endlessly travel around the world while skating alongside the industry’s most notable names. For the past ten years, he’s spent about eighty per cent of his time on the road, with the last three years qualifying more as a permanent vacation, as 365 days of his year are now spent on the road. “I’ve only got one page left in a forty-eight-page double passport that I only got in 2002,” laughs Anthony. He’s been all over the world, including Europe, Asia, South America, Australia and New Zealand. And since his schedule is so reliant on the need to perpetually travel, he has resigned himself to a wholehearted nomadic lifestyle – leaving all of his possessions in a San Francisco storage space and keeping no home or permanent residence. “I don’t know if I’ll ever be tired of travelling,” says Ant. “The world is just too small to be in one place for too long.” If you happen to see Claravall in your area, be sure to say what’s up. Chances are, you won’t be seeing him again for a while. To check out Anthony’s filming, go to www.411vm.com.
f or sharks
text miles masTerson
SouTh afRICa pIoNeeRS ShaRkSpoTTINg pRogRamme.
Following a series of attacks by Great White Sharks in recent years, surfing at certain beaches in Cape Town has become increasingly risky. These incidents, a few fatal, have spurred reactions from the South African public. Some are calling for the culling of the Great White (a protected species). Others want to prohibit nearby shark cage-diving tour operators, who bait the sharks (and, some believe, cause the sharks to associate man with food). Whilst neither of these actions have been proven nor implemented, the debate rages on. These views are tempered only by the overriding belief that most attacks are still a case of mistaken identity and are merely due to increased activity of humans in the ocean.
Fortunately the attacks have also produced a unique solution to the problem. ‘Shark Spotters’ began informally in 2004, when local surfers at Muizenberg (a beginner’s break near a Great White breeding ground), began asking car guard Patrick ‘Rasta’ Davids to keep an eye out for lurkers in the water, too. Through the subsequent efforts of Davids, a recovering drug addict who saw a chance to make a difference, and surf tour operator Greg Bertish, the project grew quickly. It now has the support of various sponsors, such as Reef and Puma, local government and other institutions (including the World Wildlife Fund), as well as Cape Town’s surfers. Now teams of previously unemployed, disadvantaged citizens watch over some of the city’s busiest and sharkiest beaches during peak times. Using a system of sirens and flags, the spotters – usually one on the hill and one on the beach – raise the alarm when suspect shadows appear, clearing the water instantly. Although the project’s long-term effectiveness is still unproven, the system has been lauded as a viable alternative to shark nets, which destroy many forms of sea life. Most importantly though, there have been no attacks at any of these beaches since the programme’s inception. A comforting fact when you paddle out and look back up at the hill to see the shark spotters watching over you. www.sharkspotters.org.za
Big wave text Tracey armsTrong
SuRfRIDeR fouNDaTIoN hITS hawaII.
Like a big wave or two? Might as well try and protect them, then. And that’s exactly what the Surfrider Foundation did during this year’s big-wave season in Hawaii. Visitors from around the world stopped by Surfrider’s booth at the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, and many signed the petition to preserve beach access on the South Shore of Oahu. But there’s more. Film producers Taylor Steele and Dustin Humphrey invited Surfrider’s Oahu Chapter to be a beneficiary of their Hawaii premiere of the film Sipping Jetstreams. Over $8,000 were raised, and the Oahu Chapter donated their portion to the Defend Oahu Coalition, who are fighting to preserve the North Shore’s Kawela Bay from being turned into 3,500 hotel rooms.
Then there were the John Kelly Awards. This year, Pancho Sullivan won the Professional Surfer prize for his efforts to stop overdevelopment of the North Shore; Schnitzer Steel Hawaii Corp was honoured as the Most Environmentally Friendly Oahu-based Company for their recycling campaign; and big-wave pioneer Peter Cole received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his work as an environmental activist for over forty years. John Kelly, after whom the Awards are named, was the original recipient of the Lifetime Achievement category. For decades Kelly led many environmental crusades on Oahu. The John Kelly Perpetual Trophy is a small koa surfboard, beautifully shaped as a board from the early days of Waikiki, when there were no groins or jetties, plenty of beach access and clean water and sand. Finally, half of the ASP World Championship Tour surfers signed up to receive environmental alert emails from Surfrider discussing the state of the coastal environment at each stop on the World Tour during 2007. Another season of big waves has ended. The work to save them goes on. www.surfrider.org www.triplecrownofsurfing.com
riding bikes down the california coast text Jesse Faen photography Josh Kimball
Surf trip on bicycles!
The concept was simple: cruise down the Californian coastline from Santa Barbara to San Diego checking out the best surf spots along the way. No big deal, right? Wrong. This was a surf trip with a twist: bikes instead of cars, peddle power instead of fossil fuels. A great way to slash both waves and carbon emissions in one fell swoop. The brainchild of Chris Del Moro, a talented waterman with flair on both long and shortboard, the journey brought together a small posse of like-minded surfers up for the challenge. The Malloy brothers, Dan and Keith, were first onboard. Their environmental views and creative choice of surf craft were a perfect match for the unusual road trip. Photoman Josh Kimball was called upon to document the slow journey. Then, a few weeks before launch, Chris offered an invitation my way.
The chance to escape office duties for a week, while gaining intimate knowledge of the waves and characters at each stop, prompted the purchase of some bike gear quick smart. I’d travelled the coastline via highways in the past, most recently while living in LA to set up Australian brand Insight Stateside. And while I’ve stumbled upon some great surf over the years, time and again crowds and traffic have proven to be major spoilers. Besides the obvious benefits of using a bicycle for transport, like the freedom it gives you to check out each sandbar instead of just the parking lot, we also found ourselves in tune with tides and best waves each day. There was no rush, for a welcomed change. Local shredders appeared everywhere. Alex Gray and Holly Beck in LA’s South Bay, Alex Knost and his gang of longboard stylists including Jared Mell and
C.J. Nelson in Newport, then Warren Smith and his skimboard buddies in Laguna Beach. Entertainment came in every form, but the coolest thing was when people recognised us from peddling past them on a previous day, and shouted encouragement as they drove past again the next morning. The trip took a total of nine days. We ended up covering about 300 miles, but generally at a steady pace. The most challenging bit? That came at the end, when the final stretch took us through military land that called for special clearance through Camp Pendleton. Five hours on a bike, towing a trailer with surfboards and all your gear during the midday sun proved brutal... but standup tubes near San Diego the next morning soon washed away the sweat. www.insight51.com
norge text Vince Medeiros illustration Phillip Grisewood
Norway’s Henning Marthinsen has wings.
Archaeological findings suggest that there were hunter-gatherers in Norway as early as 12,000 years ago. Henning Marthinsen wasn’t one of them, though. He’s around today, you see, and he’s actually twenty-three. Originally from Varingskollen (pop. unknown), this Norwegian quarterpipe demon can soar atop a snowboard like a winged creature straight out of Homer. You look at him and the man just launches, twists, turns, spins, strikes a pose, spins even further – arms parallel to board, eyes locked on landing spot – spins again, twists some more, then bam, down, unwinds and rides away like the wind. While you might say that’s just hyperbolic codswallop, there’s actually plenty of evidence out there. Henning recently finished fourth place at the O’Neill Evolution Quarterpipe event in Davos, where he had the crowd going wild with a barrage of backside 720s and 900s. Not only that, but he is also the most recent winner of the mega prestigious Arctic Challenge, which takes place in Norway and is organised by fellow countryman Terje Haakonsen. In last year’s quarterpipe final, Haakon was the man to beat. But Henning, unfazed, rose to the challenge, launching a series of perfect airs as well as his signature 900 to win the event. Not bad, right? So here are a few more questions to further acquaint us with our subject. Best thing about Norway? “The girls.” Music? “Hiphop. It gives me a good feeling.” The media: good or bad? “Good. That’s how I get paid. No media, no publicity. No publicity, no sponsors. No sponsors, no cash.” A man in synch with the times, Henning. But what if time travel were all of a sudden possible – would he go back, trace his roots, maybe do a little hunter-gathering around the fjords? Not really. “I’d go straight back to 1990 in the United States with my gear from 2006,” he says. “I’d show them all the new tricks and become rich.” Stupid question, great plan.
Going Ver te text Jay Riggio photography Annabel Mehran
They’re bringing sexy back.
New York City’s many seasons, colours and individual styles suggest that conformity is a forbidden word in this town. But the fat fearsome truth is: unoriginality plagues every inch of every borough like a hefty strain of e-coli on an unrefrigerated chicken breast. It’s enough to make any self-respecting purveyor of individuality want to punch themselves in the nuts and jump off a bridge. But when cynical types like myself begin to bet their life savings on the Big Apple’s outward originality nearing extinction, they can take a healthy hit of New York sewer-cap steam and gaze upon the freshly inspired designs of Verte. Verte was born and bred straight from t he central innards of Lower Manhattan. Since 2002, the brand has slowly but solidly been making an impact on the ever-growing world of boutique-style T-shirts, sweatshirts and multi-genre collaborations. Run by Razo brothers Andre, Marc, Tino and Andre’s wife, Athena, the owners take pride in infusing themselves into their brand’s designs and overall image. The company name derives from the siblings’ skate-influenced Vermont upbringing. “The word Vermont comes from two French words, verte (green) and montagne (mountain),” explains Andre. “It’s perfect because it’s where we came from and it’s a slight skate reference, like a vert ramp.” The company’s ethos remains as pure as the day Verte began. “We never really set out to make a clothing company. It has always been more about being able to work together as a family,” says Andre. “It’s more of a creative hub where we can express ourselves and provide a platform for people we believe in.” In the future, Verte hopes to do a little bit of everything, including books, movies, art shows, skateboards and more collaborations. As long as the Razos are still having fun doing what they do, NYC might just have another go at that lost notion of original style.
Super freak! text MILES MASTERSON photography DAMEA DORSEY
Jordy Smith has his sights set on the world.
In early 2006 an eighteenyear-old South African by the name of Jordan Michael Smith appeared in Surfer magazine’s ‘Hot 100’ special edition. The editors of the famous surfing pamphlet ranked Jordy a respectable eighth. Jordy’s position could have seemed a tad high to the casual observer, especially considering his lack of experience and unknown status outside of his home country. But if you were lucky enough to catch him freesurfing around that time, you too would have realised the kid’s potential. When someone who is still too young to drink in a pub can alternate air reverses, tube rides and lip-thwacking, spray-flinging hacks down the line with a mature style beyond his years, he’s surely destined for greatness. It is no coincidence his nickname is Superfreak. Surf hacks first began paying attention following a third-place finish at the hyper-competitive Billabong World Championship Tour (WCT) event at Jeffrey’s Bay. His performance, which included multiple airs and massive carves, also elevated him to the status of the next potential prodigal son – and promoted him to realm of comparisons with King Kelly himself. Not bad for a teenager who cites reading Harry Potter books and making amateur movies as his downtime hobbies. Through the remainder of the year Jordy beat more WCT surfers to take the ISA World Title in Huntington Beach, California, and then ended fifth at the Haleiwa Op Pro in Hawaii. He then got another fifth at Sunset in the Xcel Pro and held the runner-up trophy at the O’Neill World Cup, also at Sunset. The sequence of results got him the Vans Triple Crown ‘Rookie of the Year’ accolade. But Jordy wanted more. And he went on to win the Billabong ASP World Pro Junior Title at Narrabeen, Australia, this past January. Victory in
that contest, often regarded as the soothsayer of events when it comes to determining future world titles, was one of the sweetest for Jordy, who admits to not having achieved a good result in Australia for some time. Jordy, who says he listens to The Beatles to relax before heats, will be doing the World Qualifying Series (WQS) full time in 2007 and should easily qualify for the WCT in 2008, where he will get the chance to fulfil his ambition to be world champion. The young South African has the steady support of his surfboard-shaper dad, Graham, and manager mum, Luellen. “My dad always tells me: don’t get a big head and stay humble and you’ll be all right,” says Jordy. “And so I just stick to that and hope it all turns out good in the end.” This kind of attitude is but one of the parallels that can be drawn between Kelly Slater and he who will (probably) be King. Both are natural footed and combine power, functional technical progression and smooth, aesthetic flow. Both come from humble backgrounds. Both are competitive machines and want to win everything. And, freakish as it sounds, both also share the same birth date, albeit sixteen years apart. “I guess it’s just a coincidence, one of those things,” says Jordy. No doubt pesky media types will dwell on the astral coincidence from now on. But his response reveals a pragmatic approach that seems focused on only one thing: winning contests with the highest levels of surfing performance he can muster: “I’m just there for a reason and that is to do my job, which is to try and beat everybody. I don’t really care who they are.” Whatever the future holds, Jordy Smith will weave his particular brand of surfing magic on the world for many years to come.
Des PoP pite ular text Jay Riggio
photography Kevin Zacher
With a bestselling videogame to his name and a series of mainstream brand endorsements, Tony Hawk is easily the most famous skateboarder of all time. But as many continue to criticise his public portrayal of skating, Tony reminds us that, fame and fortune aside, his number one priority is still skateboarding.
Interviewing Tony Hawk is a task much too important for a lowly, late-
sleeping writer like myself. I mean, this is Tony Hawk we’re talking about, the guy that as a kid I wholeheartedly believed to be the second coming of the good lord himself, the man who singlehandedly changed skateboarding by breaking down any and every existing boundary practically every time he’s stepped on a board.
Don’t believe me? Just take a glance at Tony’s list of invented tricks. His glossary of vert staples includes the Madonna, the rodeo flip, the airwalk, the kickflip mctwist, the 720 and, of course, the door-opening, internationally televised 900, amongst others. Tony has gone above and beyond what you’d expect from an average pro. With a revolutionary videogame to his name, a slew of TV and movie appearances on his resume, immeasurable products named in his likeness, two full hands worth of companies under his ownership, a wife and three kids, and even his own weekly radio show, thirty-eight-year-old Hawk still manages to find time to do what he loves most of all: ride a skateboard. ▼
But my doubts about my being a worthy scribe for this story have little time to manifest. Before I know what the hell is taking place, I find myself deep in conversation with Hawk as he traverses the streets of Carlsbad, California, en route to pick up his kids from school.
Despite having been
a prominent figure in skateboarding since the early eighties, it wasn’t until almost twenty years later that Tony’s life took a strange and virtually unexpected turn one regular summer’s day in San Francisco. It was the 1999 X Games and skateboarding was in a steady balanced lull. It wasn’t quite dead, as it had been in years gone by, but it sure as hell wasn’t big either. During the ‘best trick’ contest, Tony Hawk began attempting the previously uncompleted 900 in front of 268,390 attending fans, not including the thousands upon thousands of vegetables watching each attempt from their living-room sofas. On his eleventh attempt, Tony rode back down the transition, having just landed the first ever 900. Skateboarders were psyched and tearfully proud, but America, oh America, was beside itself with a newfound giddiness for its favourite ‘sport’, skateboarding. And in one exploding instant, Tony Hawk was thrust into mainstream stardom as the quintessential living, breathing skateboarder – and, in the limited view of the public, the only skater that mattered. Some even believed Tony to be the first skateboarder ever. Huh? “It was a strange event,” says Tony about that evening in ‘99. “It was weird because there wasn’t some big [televised] celebration when I landed a 720 on this remote ramp in Sweden. All of a sudden there was this public forum [for skateboarding].” Suddenly, Tony was mysteriously given the unofficial, but indisputable, title of lone spokesperson for skateboarders around the globe – the sole figure who was to represent skateboarding in all its entirety. But despite Tony’s outstanding accomplishments in skating and his long road to worldwide recognition, he quickly became the subject of criticism from skateboarders everywhere who unsympathetically believed that he had, in fact, ‘sold the fuck out’. Skater disapproval for Tony’s public ventures transformed into downright condemnation as Mr. Hawk continued to make more than one mainstream media appearance with skateboard in hand. ▼
Aside from the god-like bout of fame and mainstream recognition that surrounded him, Tony understandably was far from comfortable with the public’s newfound vision of him as the quintessential skateboarder: “I never put a title upon myself or decided that that’s what I wanted to do with my life. It sort of fell on me and to be fair, I [still] try to explain to people, ‘Look, I’m just one skater, I’m mostly a vert skater’. Skateboarding is too diverse to say that one person is the icon for it.”
The TV spot features a couple of amateurs from Tony’s skate company, Birdhouse, skating a giant rail. After they land their tricks, Tony boardslides the rail with the Jeep Wrangler he’s driving. The vehicle dismounts the rail and bounces awkwardly with its landing, before Tony playfully shouts, “This thing’s got pop!” As one of the harshest critics of all things skateboarding related and someone who has, admittedly, questioned Tony’s public portrayal of skating, I personally loved the commercial. Hell, I even laughed out loud at the damn thing.
There’s no doubt that he has been handed an enormous amount of responsibility. But rather than succumb to the pressure, criticism, false impressions, silly media inquiries and dick-swinging paparazzi, Tony has accepted his fate with a great sense of duty and pride. “I’m happy to speak on behalf of the positive benefits of skateboarding,” he says.
On the flipside of rational criticism, Tony has also received an unbelievable amount of shit from the truly misinformed. “When the videogame became successful, kids that just started skating were like, ‘Who is this guy? He does the 900 and all of a sudden he’s got a video game.’ It’s hard to explain I’ve been around twenty years prior to this. That’s my whole deal, I got lucky, I was the first one to do a 900 and that was it,” he explains. Even more bizarre is the popular belief that Tony only exists as a videogame character. Tony laughs off the ridiculous notion: “I don’t mind, because I’m proud of the videogame and how I’m represented in it. If you want to research who I am, feel free because I’ve been here for a while.”
Though many skaters
may feel detached from the Tony Hawk portrayed between after-school cartoons, or the pixilated version that performs tricks with the click of a wireless controller, Tony knows he will forever be tied to the heart of skating – mainly because that’s just what he does. The truth is: Tony just might skate more than all the naysayers who have criticised his career choices over the years. He rides vert at least three times a week and rides his backyard park every other day, most of the time with his son, Riley. “I feel like I’m always tied to the core of skating because I’m out there every day. I never feel like I left the reason why I started skating in the first place and, to be honest, if I’m involved in some kind of mainstream aspect – whether it’s a sponsorship or a commercial on national TV – I make sure that I have final approval over what goes on and that I represent skateboarding well,” says Tony before admitting that in the past his inability to have ‘final say’ in a project may have compromised his ultimate vision. With Tony’s rising popularity in the mainstream, he’s gained the power to ensure that his televised skating is done right, much in the manner that top Hollywood directors have the final cut of their film. “If nothing else, I’m using their marketing dollars to promote skateboarding in general, you know what I mean? It’s not about necessarily selling their product as much as it is about promoting skating and showing it to an audience that has maybe never seen it before,” says Hawk, adding that these days he only takes on a project if it will be “fun and represent skating well”. Tony mentions a recent commercial he did for Jeep as a perfect example of a nationally broadcast skate commercial done well: “From the idea, to the production and basically through to the final version, me and a couple of guys made the thing as legit as possible. And it seems to me that it’s probably the best skating in a commercial that anyone’s ever done.”
With skateboarding being so prominent in the mainstream, longtime skaters, including myself, often wish for the spotlight to quickly dim and leave skating where it once was: underground and seemingly more special to the ones who practiced it. But many are quick to forget that skating’s popularity has a positive fallout. For one, skateparks around the globe have popped up like hopping bunnies, giving skaters everywhere a hassle-free alternative from street skating. And as I write these words sipping fine wine and aged cheeses, I am reminded that this rise in skate culture recognition is also paying my bills. It’s given people like myself the chance to make a living working in the industry. “The public opinion of skateboarding helps people who have devoted their lives to it, who would have nothing to show for it otherwise,” says Tony. “The people that have wanted to compete in skating or be in the industry or skate for a living, suddenly they’re able to do that because there is more interest and appreciation for it.” ▼
As far as the televised version of skateboarding goes, it has undoubtedly gotten kids skating who would have never stepped on a board otherwise. “A lot of kids tell me they started skating because they started playing the videogame or they saw the 900 on ESPN. That’s a huge honour for me, to inspire kids to get out there and learn to skate,” says Tony.
Critics who accuse Tony of selling out on account of his crispy-clean image forget that he has lived through skating’s grimiest, punkest years. “I grew up with skate culture and punk rock and people looking different and I’ve always embraced that because I felt it was a matter of being yourself and being an individual,” says Hawk. “I remember when I was a kid in school trying to explain the Dead Kennedys and nobody got it. It was too different and scary for people. And then I found this culture that identified with it. They appreciated diversity and we all came together because we liked skating.” But what about skating’s original DIY, punk and anti-social ethos? “There’s still so many kids that sneak into schoolyards and skate public handrails just to claim that photo or that trick. That’s still very much part of our culture. It’s not like everyone is skating skateparks and confined in suits. There’s definitely a side [of skating] that might be diluted, but there’s still a faction that do it because it sets them apart, because it’s different.” For a moment Tony excuses himself. I can hear the voice of a child. It’s Tony’s son, Riley. Tony apologises and returns to tell me about some future projects, including his multi-genre Boom Boom Huckjam tour, his weekly radio show on SIRIUS with Jason Ellis and Jesse Fritch, the many goals of the Tony Hawk Foundation, which help build skateparks in cities across the US, his insanely popular videogame, the upcoming Birdhouse video that’s reaching for a 2007 release, his Hawk clothing brand and what it’s like watching his son skate better than he does. For a moment I ponder the piled-high plate that is Tony’s life and before I let him go, I have to ask him how on earth he finds time to do so much all at once. Tony pauses for what seems like forever, then says: “It’s hard to have already been there and all of a sudden it’s this much bigger and there’s this many more opportunities. I’m trying to raise a family and trying to prioritise time. It’s tough. But I can’t complain because I’m here.” He pauses once again before finishing his thought: “My job description above everything else still reads, ‘Pro Skater’. That is what I do for a living and that’s what I’m most proud of.”
And with that, we say our good-byes and he’s off. I sit still for a moment and try to pinpoint a flaw in something Tony had just said. But I can’t. Despite all of the fame, money, accomplishment and vast criticism, Tony still is and always will be just like us: a skateboarder For exclusive Tony Hawk photos, check out www.huckmagazine.com.
A professional snowboarders. they’re the rock stars of our world, waltzing from mountain to mountain across the planet in search of the perfect jump, carve and turn. but look beneath the lustre of competition floodlights and gloss of magazine spreads and a whole new reality emerges. you see, when they’re not challenging the laws of physics, these demigods of snow live what amounts to relatively normal lives. jorn tomter travels to the o’neill evolution in davos to capture the gloriously mundane routine of an alpine life.
photography Jorn Tomter
Iouri nationality age sponsors
Podladtchikov russian 18 santa cruz spy volcom nixon red bull
kjersti nationality age sponsors
buaas norwegian 25 oakley roxy rossignol dc shoes
nationality age sponsors
norwegian 26 oâ€™neill elan spy 32 etnies level
Terje nationality age sponsors
Haakonsen norwegian 32 burton oakley volcom swatch
nationality age sponsors
swiss 30 oâ€™neill santa cruz smith drake northwave
Caroline nationality age sponsors
Beliard french 23 oâ€™neill dc shoes smith
London’s Noisettes are scratching their name into the fabric of this world.
Text Phil Hebblethwaite Photography Lee Hooper
ew bands are chucking as many flavours into their musical stew as London-based three-piece Noisettes. Somewhere in there you can hear West Coast psych rock, eighties U.S. punk, crackling jazz, classic English guitar pop, and driving old-school R&B. Fewer bands still are managing to take such a wide range of influences and transform them into something so individual, ferocious and brilliant. Yet on the eve of the release of their debut album, What’s The Time Mr Wolf?, the band revealed not only a few last-minute jitters about the record, but also how hard they’re finding it to win a reliable audience, despite being one of the most explosive live bands in the UK with a bona fide star of a frontlady, Shingai Shoniwa. The Noisettes – Shingai, Dan (guitar) and Jamie (drums) – are refreshingly honest people. Their toil to be heard mirrors that of scores of bands who make music as it should be made yet, somehow, remain slighted by radio and the mainstream. For the moment, at least. This band have got 100 per cent belief in themselves and they’re prepared to do whatever it takes to get their music out there. The punters will just have to catch up. HUCK: Your debut album is not yet out but you’re already recording new material. Is that right? Jamie: We are – just demos. Six songs are roughly ready. We really wanted to get onto the new stuff because the way we recorded the album was good but, in the end, it wasn’t the best way. We did it in different places and only when we could find time and, for that reason, it wasn’t necessarily the best we could do. If all goes to plan, we’ll record the second album in May. So you’re not happy with the debut album? Dan: I’m happy with it. Jamie: It’s alright, but I’m not sure I would call it a classic album – it’s more a collection of songs. Shingai: That’s just your opinion. Jamie: Sonically, it changes too often and we seem to be coming from different places the whole time. I’d say a classic album is a moment in time.
Do you think people who buy the album will notice that it wasn’t recorded in one place at one time? Jamie: I can tell, but I’m not sure if anyone else will be able to. Dan: A lot of the songs we recorded in California we ended up scrapping because they didn’t really reflect what we wanted to do as a debut album. They were a bit dark. So we recorded more stuff here in Croydon [in England] and those songs worked better. I think the album’s cohesive, even if we
know ourselves it was pieced together a bit. The Noisettes sound is really varied and distinct. Is it taking people time to latch onto it? Jamie: No one wanted to touch us when we started out because we didn’t sound like The Libertines or Bloc Party – everything about us was completely different. Labels thought it would require kids to use too much brain power to understand us, and that just wasn’t fair on us or them, although they had a point:
I’m constantly shocked by how much people who are supposedly into music just follow the pack and like what NME tells them to like. It’s easier to do that but it’s bullshit. Eventually we saw things happening, though – you see people come again. We’re just about to go on tour and it will be a good test, because the last time we toured England it wasn’t a huge success. You’ve just been on a massive stadium tour supporting Muse. How did you get on
with their fans? Jamie: Really well, even though we took a bit of grief on our MySpace page. Some people said some pretty hardcore things. Some even didn’t like that we don’t have a guy singer. I couldn’t understand it. But that’s the only time we’ve been given a hard time. Do people think of you as an eccentric band? Jamie: Probably because we’re not like Babyshambles. But we’re not because there are bands like Lightning Bolt and Acoustic
Ladyland out there too, and we don’t think of them as being eccentric. Shingai: A lot of people just haven’t heard a band that seems to embrace a lot of styles of music. We don’t ever try and force what we’re writing through a hole and try and make it sound generic. We encourage the fact that we all bring different things to the songs and we think that now is a good time to do that. Other bands are all beginning to sound the same. It’s about time they started bringing in different elements and trying new ideas. Plenty of ▼
bands doing the angular, post punk thing don’t seem to realise that they’ve become ordinary; that they’re the bland pop music that gets played to death on the radio and people end up hating. So do you think of Bloc Party or Franz Ferdinand fans as your potential audience? Shingai: It’s not like that. No one’s fighting for the same people. Jamie: I don’t care who they are as long as they come to the fucking gigs, and if they like it, bring two mates along next time. It’s funny, because so many bands are looking backwards but few are doing what great bands of the past did and that was bring lots of styles to their music. Think of The Clash: they started rock’n’roll and punk, but then brought in ska and all sorts of other things. I just don’t understand how it’s got to this point where a band like us are considered outsiders when all we’re doing is just making music like the good groups in the past always have. Everyone complains about this, but getting radio play
and all that really ought to be about what’s good and nothing else. Shingai: It seems like so many bands do what they’re expected to do. Someone says, ‘I want a Saturday night record’, or ‘I want a Sunday night record’, and they do it. It’s not surprising that underground radio stations like Resonance keep going because they maintain that sacred place that musicians and artists always had. Now it’s like we’re being prescribed records by doctors and that’s not right. Jamie: But so many people don’t seem to know that there’s an option and something like Resonance FM is providing it, and every year it gets worse. There are kids now who think that 50 Cent created hip hop. In America, things are a bit better. The most requested radio song is a Led Zeppelin song – ‘Stairway To Heaven’. Here it’s probably fucking James Blunt. Americans have always been good to the Noisettes, haven’t they? Shingai: It’s so much better over there than it is here.
Jamie: They’ve really embraced us. When we’ve played in America, or Europe, or just about anywhere that isn’t the UK, it’s been really incredible. Americans are better at giving something a chance if they don’t get it at first. They won’t just close their ears and go away. That may not be true but it seems like that. In what ways can having this new record deal help you? Jamie: It certainly helps to pay for the recordings and tours. Shingai: But it still feels like we’re a circus or performing troupe traipsing around trying to make a living. The truth is that we’re never going to get much radio play and we’re going to have to fight for privileges that other bands are handed. We don’t expect to turn up in Liverpool or somewhere and have a readymade audience. But we will go there and put on a show
The Noisettes’ debut album, What’s The Time Mr Wolf?, is out now on Vertigo.
man text Cyrus Sharad photography Spencer Murphy
There are those who argue that snowboarding simply isn’t a sport. I agree with them. Snowboarding isn’t a sport, it’s an art form. Not only that, it’s the purest, most important art form on earth; no pretentious dealers, no pokey galleries, no awkward private shows packed with unbearable trendies sculling free wine and miniature bruschetta.
my mind had trouble remembering that little dance with death, but the mountain was determined not to forget.
There’s only one canvas in snowboarding, and it isn’t for sale. The first time I became aware of it is when I started a small avalanche off piste in Livigno and found myself buried up to my neck. An Australian skier found me maybe twenty minutes later – by which point I’d managed to free one arm and was halfway through smoking what I assumed would be my last ever cigarette. He asked what had happened, but I couldn’t remember much. A sudden flash of light, a sound like muffled thunder, a not unpleasant sensation of being carried along in the current of a soft white river. It was like a surreal dream, and by the time I got back to the chalet I was sure I’d imagined the whole thing – until I looked up the hill and saw a patch of bare rock in the far distance and my slide below it turning pink in the setting sun. My mind may have had trouble remembering the details of that little dance with death, but the mountain, it seemed, was determined not to forget. I guess that’s when I started thinking about the legends we leave behind in snowboarding. From rickety chairlifts I began spending more and more time studying the ghost trails left
behind by riders long gone, trying to piece together their lines like some snow-bound forensic investigator; a windlip slashed here, a cornice dropped there. I still spent double maths lessons with an issue of Transworld tucked inside my textbook, but where once I was gawping at the tricks themselves, now I was scanning tracks in the background, weighing up the success of previous landings, wondering who and when and what had been going through their minds. It was like looking at the light of long dead stars. One issue even featured a trip to Livigno with Mike and Tina Basich taken the same winter as my avalanche; I recognised the Carosello dam drops immediately from the pictures, and began wondering if any of the lines in the background were mine. I’ve since been lucky enough to know a few of snowboarding’s true artists firsthand; wild men and women of the mountain who set their alarms for 6am every morning, just in case; who save precious seconds by making sandwiches the night before, sleeping in their thermals and eating their breakfast on the first lift. It’s riders like these that truly understand
the mountain; that live for it, learn from it and come to see it as an extension of themselves. It’s in their duct-taped trousers and four-yearold reversible jackets; the way their eyes are constantly scanning the hill for new lines. In a scene populated by kids who can 270 onto and off of rails without ever having cut a powder turn – in a world where intelligent people spend their hard-earned cash on all-in-one day-glo bodysuits plastered with corporate logos – it’s riders like these that remind us why we’re here in the first place. We’re all linked on this great white canvas. Our lines have crossed a thousand times – yours and mine with Terje’s, Tom Sims’, Travis Rice’s. Some of them you can even see from the valley floor. They all look the same from the outset, but every one tells a different story, and some of them are more valuable than others. And while the snow may come and cover them up, the mountain never forgets. So next season, assuming it snows at all, model yourself on the wild men and women of the mountain, and try to make your lines count. You’re an artist, after all
The music that is surfing in Jamaica text and photography Jamie Brisick
The surprising thing is that they didn’t find each other sooner. “Surfing in Jamaica started in the early sixties,” says Billy Mystic, coach and president of the National Team. “They used to manufacture boards from old refrigerator foam, and it’s been going from strength to strength ever since.” First came the Jamaican Surfing Association (JSA) in 1999, then Jamnesia Surf Camp, then A Broke Down Melody in 2004, which successfully broadcast the magic of dreadlocks and spiraling blue barrels to the world. Most recently it’s the Jamaican Team’s unforgettable antics during the opening ceremonies of the ISA World Games, when the guys you see in the picture plucked the microphone from the MC and got the entire Huntington Beach crowd chanting JA-MAI-CA! in a kind of ode to the global love of reggae.
A few interesting facts: “Sand so hot you can cook
an egg on it.” At Lighthouse, a staple reef break with a bowly right and winding left, Billy Mystic made this comment, and when I got out of the water at noon and tried to walk up the beach I realised he wasn’t kidding. Sandals are left at water’s edge in Jamaica, which is to say it’s hot as fuck and you won’t be needing wetsuits. The poverty’s intense and the crime rate’s high and by no means do you want to be rolling around Trench Town late at night just because you love the song. But at the same time, there are moments of divine elation. In the words of a Rasta sage, “Where there is strife and duress there is also spirit and imagination.” Take, for example, this snapshot from the final day of my weeklong visit: It’s blindingly bright and robustly hot, the ocean taking on a kind of hyper-real luster. At the shoreline a group of dreadlocked cherubs do backflips off a big chunk of driftwood. In the shorebreak a couple of young bucks trade ankle slappers on withered, yellowed thrusters. A few yards out a proud-looking Rasta with natty dreads and a lion-like torso wades through waist-deep water. He raises his arms above his head and sways his hips. And then, in a way that seems not only natural but completely apropos to the moment, he breaks into song. His voice is beautiful, glorious, gospel-like, the whooshing and swooshing of the water providing the perfect backbeat. Music is everywhere in Jamaica, and when you hear it dance with the waves you can’t help but connect it to surfing
fakie flip dublin, california
text Jay Riggio photography Tadashi Yamaoda
Jeremy Reeves: former chef, skateboarding pro. 71
Life is all about choices. Twentyfour-year-old Jeremy Reeves was faced with one of its many tough choices two and a half years ago when he decided to move to San Francisco and pursue a career in skateboarding.
heelflip san francisco, california
After graduating from culinary school in his hometown of St. Paul, Minnesota, Jeremy secured a gig as a gourmet cook at an expensive college in the same area. “I worked the pasta bar, a pizza station and pretty much did it all,” he explains. While still skating every day, he quickly grew tired of living in St. Paul. With some industry friends urging him to move to San Francisco to give skateboarding a solid shot, Jeremy decided to take a break from his day job duties and fled to the Bay Area. Upon arrival in SF, Jeremy was instantly thrust into a lifestyle devoid of any sort of
kickflip san francisco, california
comfort. Bouncing from couch to couch while skating his hardest every single day, it wasn’t until a year later that Jeremy secured himself his own apartment. Soon thereafter, his venturesome actions began to pay off in full. Just recently he was turned pro by his board sponsor, City Skateboards, and also received the honour of having the last part in the long-awaited video, Crime In The City. “It hasn’t really sunk in yet,” says Jeremy about his pro debut. “I still do the same things I normally do. I just skate every day.” Making the strange transition from full-time
cook to pro skateboarder, Jeremy is more than appreciative of the rare job description he’s been granted. “It’s pretty amazing. Sometimes it feels like I’m getting free money, but I work for it and try as hard as I can. As long as my photos keep coming, I guess I’m doing my job,” he says. Whether he’s flavouring up a gourmet dish or putting a hurtin’ on a ledge, Jeremy’s psyched to just skate and live the dream. “I know I could be making more money doing what I did before,” he says, “but I wanted to have a vacation… a very long vacation.”
peter mel shows he can go both ways, dropping in on a sizeable left wall.
Surf Contest text and photography Will Henry
The dawn reveals a faint glimmer of blue in the eastern Oregon sky as the riders prepare their gear. On any other morning this lonely, cold beach would sit empty on a desolate coastline. But not today. Today it’s littered with talent.
The waves thunder just beside us, and even in the dark we can sense their overwhelming size. A light offshore breeze carries a biting chill, pausing our breath mid-air. The dawn begins to illuminate our surroundings, filtered light beneath an overcast sky. The outer reef is barely visible, but we can tell by the size of the beach break that Nelscott Reef will produce exactly what we came here for – big, perfect surf – and some of the world’s top talent to ride it. ▼
Nelscott Reef sits about a half-mile from shore, and is guarded by a vicious shorepound that makes paddling out nearly impossible. Local John Forse, founder and organiser of the competition, knows the wave better than most. He watched the reef break on many big swells over the years, taunting him until he could stand it no longer. Finally, one day in the mid-1990s, he made the decision to take on the challenge – alone. With an underpowered zodiac he launched from a nearby river mouth, carefully timed the sets, and made it to the safety of deep water where he anchored off the break. John rode a few waves that day, but the shifting peaks were difficult to catch. The experience led him to an epiphany: Nelscott was perfect for the sport of tow-in surfing. Today, as the heats progress and the day grows brighter, many of the world’s most legendary surfers weave across the big, open-faced waves. Older salts such as Richard
brad gerlach displays his many years of experience by getting as close to the barrel as possible.
Schmidt, Jeff Clark and Vince Collier compete alongside a younger generation, such as 2006 Mavericks winner Grant Baker, the Long brothers, Gerlach and Parsons, and many others who have earned their reputations for that special combination of grace and bravado, qualities essential for riding these massive walls of water. The swell holds strong throughout the day and the final heat runs as the setting sun casts orange hues behind distant clouds. In the end a pair of Hawaiians, Garrett McNamara and Kealii Mamala, walk off with the first-place trophy. And the next day the beach is empty once again
Final Results: 1. Garrett McNamara / Kealii Mamala 2. Brad Gerlach / Mike Parsons 3. Adam Repogle / Alistair Craft 4. Raph Bruhwiler / Keith Malloy 5. Greg Long / Rusty Long
LOOK GREAT SMELL GREAT
Pro- snowboarders Jenny Jones & Lisa Filzmoser
LES ETTES PERFUMES Non-Alcoholic. Light, fresh and gentle on the skin. The bottles are lightweight, shatter resistant and re-usable. Sold at your closest boardshop, or directly online at www.lesettes.com
photography PAT VERMEULEN
101 text ZOE OKSANEN
Snowboard art was born of the same womb as the snowboard itself. The two have gone hand in hand from the outset, and the progression of the art form has kept up with the technical advances of the boards themselves. Unlike surfboards, snowboards depend on eye-catching top and base graphics in order to sell well. Today companies employ entire departments to work solely on the aesthetics of their products. Pro-model boards are the product of rigorous creative teamwork, with rider and designer working side by side on the project. For many pro snowboarders, their signature board is far more than just a tool for mad trickery and fun – it is an expression of their personal character, beliefs and life as a whole. The process can begin anything up to
eighteen months before the board hits the stores and is often more time-consuming and complex than you would imagine, with countless hours put in by graphic designers – the silent heroes behind our favourite boards. Here we look at the creative process behind the work of two of the best: Jari Salo and Antti Rastivo. Jari is a veteran of the design trade and makes boards for the likes of Joni Makinen and Jussi Oksanen. Antti, who works with Wille Yli Luoma and Travis Parker, is responsible for some of the most innovative designs to ever hit a snowboard deck. ▼
ANTTI For Antti Rastivo, rewarding as it is to see a finalised graphic, it is the creative process that is “absolutely the best part”. His inspiration? “Everyday life, hands down. The world around me, travelling, meeting new people, magazines, music videos, movies, friends, websites...” It is this very quotidian world that led Antti to produce his award-winning ‘1979’ graphic created for pro-rider Wille Yli Luoma [pictured here]. With Wille being such a talented photographer, and both rider and designer having a similar artistic vision, the concept came together with relative ease. The process is not always an easy one though, and with ‘clients’ Wille and Travis Parker always being on the road, design discussions often take place via email and Ichat. But in the end, his work is his passion – and something he is truly grateful for. “I have met so many nice people, seen new places and ridden with some of the best snowboarders all around the world,” he says. “I’m just really lucky to be involved in all this.” www.anttirastivo.com
photography XXXX XXXXXXXXXX
wille and his daughter lilou take a spin on his 1979.
photography PAT VERMEULEN 82 www.HUCKmagazine.com
Joni shows us how to tweak a method as only the ‘Mak’ knows how.
JARI Jari Salo is an old hand when it comes to design. He’s the man that worldclass snowboarders such as Jussi Oksanen and Joni Makinen turn to year after year to create the crazy artwork gracing their signature boards. For Jari, the challenge of churning out fresh artwork time and again is one he’s always ready to face. “I love to create new things,” he says. “Finding the right idea is sometimes really hard, but when you start to get the pieces together and see that it works, that makes me happy.” The creation of the Joni Makinen pro model you see here offers a glimpse into Jari’s intriguing and incredibly original process of snowboard design. www.jarisalo.com
Bob Marley is the “plague of globalisation”, says artist, surfer and reggae-wary world traveller Sandow Birk.
text and illustration SANDOW BIRK
It took five airports and forty-eight hours of travelling – including a night spent trying to sleep on a wooden bench in Calcutta and a bumpy ride in a rusty, three-wheeled Vespa – to get from Los Angeles to the sweltering wharf of Port Blair, Andaman Islands, with a throbbing hangover and three surfboards. Ten hours later I was clinging seasick to the railing of a 65-foot ketch in high seas, on my way to surf some of the most remote reefs in the world. My ten shipmates and I wouldn’t step ashore again for nearly two weeks. In all that time there was not a plane in the sky, not a light at night, not another sail or puff of smoke visible as far as the vast horizon. It was the proverbial end of the earth.
When our ice ran out before our liquor did it was time to put in for provisions. The pier at Hut Bay is not much more than some tree stumps lashed to a chunk of cement, and the town itself is one short, dirt street with cows standing in the middle of it swishing their tails and dropping green piles with heavy plops. Small white leeches crawled slowly between my toes as women in purple and gold saris loaded up our ice chests. Before we headed back out to sea, a handful of us wanted to grab a cold drink at the only bar in town. Following a smiling kid on a bicycle, we came to a three-sided shack with a lumpy pool table and familiar music drumming out from scratchy speakers. Jamaican flags draped from the ceiling, faded Bob Marley posters hung askew on the plank walls, and a red-eyed and dreadlocked teenager smiled as we straggled up. Standing there sweating in a far corner of the earth, on an island which is likely to be the most isolated outpost of the world’s most Hindu nation, I was suddenly surrounded by it once again – reggae music, the curse of the world. One of the main premises of the argument against globalisation is that, as the vast and varied globe becomes interconnected through increased travel and trade and technological advances, the myriad of differences in the world will gradually disappear. Much of this feared intermingling has already come to pass, erasing the romantic vision of our world as vast and exotic and full of surprises. Ever since the Second World War and the rise of America, the United States has been blamed for most of the homogenisation of the planet. Hollywood movies, rock ‘n’roll, Levi’s and television have been denounced as destroyers of cultures, high and low. But nothing has symbolised America
and the dreadful effects of globalisation more than a silly guy with a ridiculous hairdo, dressed in baggy clothes of primary colours spouting inane messages of eternal happiness, ignorant and oblivious of world events around him. His name: Ronald McDonald. The general line goes like this: Ronald McDonald is the Devil to millions of conscientious citizens around the globe and his empire is ruining the world. McDonald’s Corporation currently has an everexpanding amount of restaurants in ninety-nine countries, sucking children towards its red-andyellow playgrounds and drawing them like moths to the horrible blandness of mediocrity. Its growth has oozed across the face of the earth from the first franchise in 1955 into a globespanning, culture-crushing plague. The Golden Arches rise ominously over every continent, casting claw-like shadows and making a mockery of the unique complexities of local cultures, of regional history, and of nutrition as a life-giving necessity. But Ronald McDonald is hardly the king of our global village. The true master of globalisation, the real soul sucker and seller of insipid banality is twice as powerful as Ronald McDonald. His name, ladies and gents, is Bob Marley. Bob Marley and reggae music rule the world. Like most, sociologist and musical historian Hermano Vianna finds the spread of McDonald’s somewhat depressing, but oddly finds the omnipresence of reggae music fascinating: “Reggae is the most popular music in the world,” he says from his office in Rio de Janeiro. “I’ve heard it in Africa, across Asia, here in Brazil – I know that many Polynesian islands have reggae. And to think that it all comes from one of the world’s smallest countries! It’s amazing!” Like the Big Mac’s humble beginnings in suburban Chicago, ▼
of the thousands of bars on manhattan youâ€™d be hard pressed to find a single one that doesnâ€™t have a bob marley cd in the jukebox.
reggae is rolling over the vast diversity of world cultures and smothering them with a soft pillow of simplified, feel-good political messages.
reggae’s birth in Jamaica hid its true nature. Its simple offbeat rhythms, its mellow, feel-good lyrics, its slow-motion, un-danceability made it perfect for goofy white kids to embrace over bong hits. It has a way of making them feel exotic while never actually doing anything or going anywhere. From its place of birth, reggae has spread its foggy shadow across the globe, reaching every country on earth in less time than McDonald’s has reached only half of them. Reggae bars are found in every city and town and pueblo from Manila to Mundaka, from Cabo to Cape Town, from Sydney to Swansea and all of the millions of places in between. Now, I’ve drunk happily in reggae bars on the Caribbean coast, and been glad of it. But when I boarded a train to the Andean town of Cuzco, in Peru, it was more in the hope of hearing the ancient language of Quechua than the offbeat thuds of the Wailers. And I’ve been a lot of places in the world that don’t have a McDonald’s, but I’ll tell you, I’ve never, ever escaped the curse of reggae music. So while most people see globalism’s nemesis as the Golden Arches, I am telling you that the real destroyer of the world is reggae. In Super Size Me, documentary maker Morgan Spurlock illustrates the metastasizing spread of McDonald’s by mapping out their forty-four franchise locations on his island alone. What he doesn’t point out is that of the thousands of bars on Manhattan you’d be hard pressed to find a single one that doesn’t have a Bob Marley CD in the jukebox. Not to mention record stores, university dorm rooms, pool halls and clothes stores, all encouraging – insisting – that you get up and stand up for your rights. And whose or what those rights actually are is never explained – they’re just some
sort of foggy notion of dogoodery and political activism that is apparently undertaken by smoking a bowl and bopping in a fog to the rhythms that make reggae music so boring and so monotonous. As we bemoan the spread of McDonald’s, reggae is rolling over the vast diversity of world cultures and smothering them with a soft pillow of simplified, feel-good political messages. Reggae has been dropping a huge ball of mellow onto the world’s youth for decades, and by the time they’re old enough to grow out of it, the world will be changed without their involvement. Here’s another thing about reggae: Bob Marley is dead. Dead. That means that there are a finite number of Bob Marley songs. There are all the ones he wrote when he was alive… and that’s it. A limited number. And if you’re under fifty years old in the world today – anywhere in the world today, apparently – you’ve probably heard every single one of them, many times over. And if you’re under twenty, Jah help you, because you’re going to hear Get Up, Stand Up possibly a thousand times over for however many decades you live – and that’s a conservative estimate. So if you cherish the differences of peoples, of cultures, of life – beware. If you dream of travelling to some distant locale to see and eat and hear something new – beware. Beware the numbing thud of music danceable while staggering. Beware the globalisation of youth. Beware the disappointment of the familiar. Beware the yawn of the expected. But most of all, beware of a silly guy with a ridiculous hairdo, dressed in baggy clothes in primary colors, spouting inane messages of eternal happiness. He is destroying cultures and crushing diversity. His name is Homogeny. His name is Boredom. His name is… Bob Marley
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W IN T E R X DOWNHILL SKATINGGAMES
THE NOISETTES THIS IS ENGLAND
Music Movies Games Books...
AMAZING SCENES WITHIN...
R E T N WI S E M A XG 1 1 0 . L VO THE CHANGING FACE OF SNOWBOARDING CONTESTS Aspen: home to billionaires and private jets, posh women and poodles and, of course, the Winter X Games. The X Games are more than a mere contest. They are an institution in the world of action sports. From their early years in the mid-nineties, when they showcased sports as random as bungee jumping and in-line skating, to the mega event we know today, the X Games are where athletes go to make their name. We’re talking names that are now as familiar as Tony Hawk, Shaun White and Travis Pastrana. As far as snowboarding is concerned, the Winter X Games has long been the most prestigious arena in which to compete. Only the very top pros in the world are invited while the rest of us sit back and watch the show. And what a show it is. The 2006 X Games were viewed by a whopping 38.6 million viewers. Broadcast live on ABC Sports and ESPN, the contest and its players enter the homes of fans the world over. And with on-site spectator numbers at around 70,000 in 2006, Aspen is the place to be come January. As the eleventh Winter X Games approached, a change was in the air. Since its roots, snowboarding has been devoid of the usual accoutrements of a professional sport. The majority of riders who compete in slopestyle
would turn up fresh from a couple of months of filming in the back country, without much thought of actually practising for the contest. They would pull off the best tricks they knew they could safely land and leave for another few months of filming. It’s not that training wasn’t cool; it simply wasn’t necessary in an industry where your video part primarily defined who you were as a rider. But in 2007 the tide turned. As early as two months before, top filming riders were seen hitting the parks hard, trying brand-new tricks and honing their winning runs for the X Games finals. Andreas Wiig was dialing 1260s, and Jussi Oksanen admitted to training for the contest for the first time ever. Newcomers such as Danny Davis were practising every trick in the book, and just a few weeks before at the Honda Vail Sessions, the podium was dominated by riders such as David Benedek, who laid down out-of-control tricks such as frontside double corked 1260s. All of a sudden, riders decided they wanted a piece of the Shaun White pie and upped the ante to the point of pushing him right off the podium for the first time in years. Do this at the X Games and you are suddenly playing your game at an entirely different level. And that is exactly what happened this year. Andreas Wiig stormed the slopestyle gold with a pair of cab 900s, mute grab 7, backside rodeo 9 and a frontside 1080 indy, while Jussi Oksanen laid down a run full of nines bursting with technical perfection for silver, edging Shaun White into third place. The half pipe was a similar story, with Steve Fischer taking gold busting airs off the richter, while Shaun followed closely behind in second place. The X Games don’t offer the best prize money – far from it. But they do offer a portal into the world of mass media and recognition and, for many, it seems that survival in the world of professional snowboarding is becoming increasingly dependent on just that. Good for the sport? Bad for the sport? Who knows for sure, but for us mere mortals, it does mean an insane level of snowboarding that is increasing at a rate we never thought possible, even a year ago. I, for one, am enjoying the show. Zoe Oksanen
DOWNHILL SKATEBOAR D IN SOUTH AFRICA THEY MIGHT AS WELL BE ON THE MOON “I’m loving Cape Town, it’s got so many beautiful mountains to ride,” grins Baltic Chayjanja, a twenty-three-year-old skater from Bangkok, Thailand. He sweeps his arm over the vista below, before running off to ride down the road. Along with a small, dedicated local posse, Baltic is one of a dozen or so internationals attending a skateboarding race somewhere so unlikely it might as well be in another galaxy. The venue is the lunar landscape of Kogelberg Biosphere, an isolated nature reserve in the ragged fold mountains overlooking the ocean in the Western Cape, South Africa. The gathering is Hot Heels, the final IGSA downhill skateboard race of the year, made possible by SAGRA (South African Gravity Racing Association). Near the starting line, dreadlocked racers sit in the sun and pass around a few spliffs as they wait their turn during the time trials. Others − those with more conventional hairstyles − suck on cigarettes and fiddle with their boards and alien racing helmets. Apart from some of the top sponsored guys, most are clad in leathers that have seen better days, and some are just in jeans and clutch motorbike helmets. The visitors (all European, plus one Brazilian and Baltic the Thai) seem
more edgy about the perceived danger of the baboons and poisonous snakes than they do about slamming, and crack jokes about it as they loiter at the start. Because they have attended all the overseas events (which most of the South Africans cannot afford to get to), the main contenders for the world titles hail from European nations. Those locals with a mathematical chance crunch the numbers to the end, but most are just excited about the privilege of bombing this pristine hill. Fortunately, despite a few ugly slams on the same corner where a young South African skater died a few years ago, everyone survives the weekend. For the record, Swede Fredrik Lindstrom wins the final race, and with it the world title. South Africans Mike Zietsman and Decio Lourenço fill second and third, with Swede Erik Lundberg fourth. Capetonian Leander Lacey takes the luge. Yet, for those who pursue the act of downhill skateboarding, especially in places as surreal as this, they are all winners. And, as they are ferried back up the hill for one more run, the beaming smiles on their faces are testament to that. Miles Masterson
S M U B AL AWESOME COLOR
Awesome Color/Ecstatic Peace!
When early copies of this album were let loose in the States late last year, much was made of frontman Derek Stanton’s friendship with The Stooges’ drummer Scott Asheton and the fact that they’re signed to Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth’s label. You can imagine why – at the root of these blistering songs is a love of both the strain of hard psychedelia that The Stooges and MC5 became known for, and some of the strident experimentation that Sonic Youth did best in the early part of their career. But Awesome Color are their own group, and a superb one at that. Now Brooklyn based, their debut is rock’n’roll done with grit, muscle and a total lack of pretension. You pray when you hear it that it’s the beginning of a new flood. For too long bands have been preoccupied with angular post-punk riffs, tight trousers and tossing their fringes about. This record marks a return to soul. PHIL HEBBLETHWAITE
AU REVOIR SIMONE
The Bird Of Music/Moshi Moshi The debut mini album from this all-girl, all-keyboard pop trio walked a fine line between being twee and charming, and got away with it. On their first full-length, however, cracks begin to show. You think for a moment that it’s seriously beautiful music, then you suddenly remember the record’s title. Whoops. PH
A Weekend In The City/Wichita Always room for this kind of bleeding-heart indie, but it’s only interesting when done better than London’s Bloc Party manage. They’ve massively upped the musical ambition with their second album – it’s sonically impressive - but they’re badly let down by Kele’s ‘boo, boo, no one understands me’ lyrics. You cringe, and often. PH
Me, Myself and I/Virgin On track eight of the LP, Fat Joe raps: “I walk the middle of the streets with no bodyguard.” The implication is that he’s a hard-ass. He can do that, in fact, because no one gives a shit about him anymore, and especially not after this predictable and boring new record. Good in the past, but poor now. PH
Skeleton/Strange Feeling Denmark hardly ever produces good bands but, stone the crows, here’s a great one. They lift much from the UK and US, but deliver their indie pop songs beautifully – with real taughtness and imagination. A genuinely uplifting and joyful album worthy of Ben Watt creating a label just to give it a proper release. PH
HERMAN DÜNE Giant/Virgin
Not as gorgeous as their last album, but the Paris and Berlin-based Swedish brothers have done a solid job for their major label debut. Songs are presented in a ‘one of his, one of mine’ order, but the stark, folky sound is all Herman Düne. And they’ve brought in a larger band for this LP too. PH
“What gave you the right to call me a sinner / What gave you the right to call me at all.” Class line from class debut. Loads of bands in London doing countryfried pop, but few have the charisma and songwriting skills of Indigo Moss. The sound may be American, but the wit could only come from Britain. PH
Public Warning/Def Jam It’s not hard to work out why wee Lady Sov is the one who broke out from London’s pirate radio scene and ended up blinging it with Jay-Z: she’s got both rhyming skills and real personality. Perhaps it was hard to imagine she could kill it over a full album, but she has. An unlikely but certain star. PH
The Return To Form Black Magick Party/Counter Levi re-arranges everything from classic R&B, Spector-like sixties pop, Mersey Beat, psychedelic folk, and glam rock into a sparkling and mutant form of modern soul. He’s a real talent – a musical technician who builds songs with samples and loops but never loses sight of the glory of huge melodies and glorious hooks. PH
Farryl Purkiss/Sheer/2Feet Talented singer/songwriters are popping up all over the shop. Some may crack it big; others might not survive beyond their first album. But South African Farryl Purkiss is likely to stick around for a while. The highly personal lyrics complement a distinctively mellow acoustic sound. The up-tempo ‘Ducking and Diving’ is a highlight, but the other thirteen are all booming as well. Farryl Purkiss: remember this name. MILES MASTERSON
MOVIES THIS IS ENGLAND
Director: Shane Meadows
Set in mad Maggie’s free market eighties, This Is England follows twelve-year-old Shaun Field, a ballsy kid plagued by schoolyard bullies and memories of a father killed in the Falklands War. Shaun drifts through a lonely urban landscape littered with abandoned houses and belching factories – the tangible fallout of England’s Great Leap Forward. Craving escape, he falls in with a gang of skins led by Woody, an affable father figure in a film fixated on family and neglect. In Woody, Shaun finds an ally against his depressing surroundings. This is gang culture as social therapy, where getting trashed and trashing stuff is an act of brotherhood. And to tell that tale, Meadows captures a blistering cool in every scene, painted with an emotive mixture of sadness, nostalgia and humour. But this lighter tone soon turns heavy, when Combo, an old friend of Woody’s recently released from prison, sends the gang spinning into the world of racism, violence and toxic politics. This is skinhead culture as we think we know it. But even in these darker moments a sense of vulnerability pervades – a transformative ethic that plays out in intense and intimate bursts of handheld action. MATT BOCHENSKI
CURSE OF THE GOLDEN FLOWER Director: Zhang Yimou
Empress Phoenix is the matriarch of the Tang dynasty, and a feuding imperial family bound for soap-opera drama. Top dog Emperor Ping has enlisted a doctor to poison his wife, who is having an affair with her stepson, the Crown Prince, who, in turn, dreams of relinquishing his inheritance to get inside the kimono of a local peasant. A former cinematographer, Zhang Yimou has gone all out to make Curse a lavish showstopper. Whether it’s the rainbow hues of the royal apartments, or the golden armour of 10,000 troops, the film’s sheer opulence is staggering. But sometimes less is more. As the film leaps from intimate family drama to epic Shakespearian tragedy, overblown visuals leave you feeling like you’ve been staring too long at the sun. Curse has that compulsive, mythical quality, but it will leave you with scorched retinas. MB
DAYS OF GLORY
Director: Rachid Bouchareb
When Days of Glory premiered at Cannes to ecstatic ‘Bravos’, it was a case of right film, right time. A story of Algerian soldiers fighting both the German army and prejudice of their French paymasters in the Second World War, it arrived as resentment still smouldered in the wake of Paris’ race riots. Though Bouchareb remains frank in his treatment of racial tension and colonial cynicism, aspirations to a worthy message are sabotaged by technical bravado. Rather than develop a style reminiscent of his North African roots, Bouchareb has gone for a Hollywood war movie through and through. And while the misery is as powerful as ever, this was an opportunity to say something new about the Muslim memory of a western war – and it’s an opportunity missed. MB
THE LIVES OF OTHERS
Director: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
The Lives of Others is set in communist East Germany, where the state’s spies, the Stasi, police the lives of their socialist comrades. Sebastian Koch is playwright and would-be dissident Georg Dreyman, whose attractive girlfriend catches the eye of a government official. This minister, deciding that his best chance to get the girl is to have Dreyman arrested, appoints Stasi big boy Ulrich Muhe to dish some dirt. What follows is a brilliant meditation on the suspicion and anti-humanist hypocrisy that is the socialist state. But this isn’t an angry film; it has a simple sincerity that’s marvellously at odds with the mistrust seeping from the screen. MB
THIS FILM IS NOT YET RATED Director: Kirby Dick
Kirby Dick’s brilliant documentary about the MPAA – America’s ratings board – should be packaged with a pitchfork and flaming torch. You’re going to need them for the lynching. Dick’s thesis is that the members of the MPAA, shrouded in secrecy and answerable to virtually no one, are more or less in cahoots with the major studios, applying double standards based on ultra-conservative Christian values to punish independent cinema or anything they see as challenging ‘normal’ American values. Dick goes about his task like a private eye, and presents the evidence with judicial clarity. This is incendiary stuff. MATT BOCHENSKI
Director: Hans-Christian Schmid
This wildly brilliant German shocker deserves to gain a new lease of life on DVD. Based on the true story of a young girl in seventies Germany who was thought to have been possessed by demons, it’s less a formulaic Exorcist rip-off than a penetrating psychological study of a family on the brink of total breakdown. It’s a combustible mix of religion and politics, rationality and irrationality, in the midst of which is an innocent, apparently normal girl pulled apart by the corrupting power of her own psyche. MB
STRANGER THAN FICTION Director: Marc Forster
This story of a tax man embroiled in the meta-narrative of novellist Kay Eiffel’s (Emma Thompson) story doesn’t quite have the odd-balls to go all the way into the kind of outré universe that writer Charlie Kaufman explored with such success in Adaptation. Instead, it prefers to play it safe as an ultimately disappointing and illogical romance between Will Ferrel and Maggie Gyllenhaal’s cake maker. Nice try – but it doesn’t work. MB
TENACIOUS D: THE PICK OF DESTINY Director: Liam Lynch
After conquering big-budget Hollywood with King Kong, Jack Black is back doing what he does best – worshipping at the altar of rock. Released to public apathy in cinemas, DVD might be the more natural format for The Pick of Destiny Destiny,, a fun trip for fans of Jack Black and Kyle Gass’ tongue-in-cheek band. MB
THE U.S. vs. JOHN LENNON
Directors: David Leaf and John Scheinfeld
John Lennon – he’s that musician who couldn’t be arsed to get out of bed and called it a revolution, right? Yeah, nice one, John, you really changed the world there. Only he did, sort of. As this penetrating, if onesided, documentary shows, he came so close to doing it that he scared the shit out of the American authorities. The problem with The U.S. vs. John Lennon is that it relies heavily on the input of Yoko Ono, and as such avoids some of the more questionable areas of their relationship, and the way it shaped John’s political beliefs. That said, it adds a new perspective to a much-debated figure. MB
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RESISTANCE: FALL OF MAN PS3
So, the PS3 is finally here. Did you notice? There was the odd spot on the news, a couple of queues, the usual manufactured excitement. But really, it’s the deafening silence from the hardcore community that kind of gives the game away. Or maybe not the silence – maybe the ominous rumbling of complaints: price, looks, price, games, price. But it’s a brave new world whether you like it or not, and to celebrate, a shoot ’em up set in Grimsby. That’s right, and Manchester too. Oh boy. You see, alien scum have blah, blah, and now man’s last hope is etc., etc. So strap on a gun and get shooting. It’s real pretty and it’s made by the Ratchet and Clank dudes so it has a nice bit of humour. But… Grimsby! Grimsby, for chrissakes! MATT BOCHENSKI
TOM CLANCY’S RAINBOW SIX VEGAS PS3
Las Vegas – now that’s the kind of place to set a videogame: somewhere so stuffed with mindless drones that the only intelligence you’re likely to stumble across is as artificial as that Eiffel Tower. But Vegas is in trouble, baby! A bloody siege is threatening to take global terrorism to ‘uncontrollable heights’ (not like that cake walk in Iraq), so it’s up to Tom Clancy’s book-born hit squad to kick some ass. This is an above-average team-based shooter that’s stuffed with online options. On the downside, you might have to make friends to get the most out of it. MB
SSX BLUR Wii
Public health warning: the following review may contain the words ‘rad’ and ‘gnarly’, while bandying about such phrases as ‘off the richter, dude’. You see, SSX is the raddest, gnarliest and most ‘off the richter’ sports franchise around (despite sounding kinda like a Nazi porn film), and SSX Blur is a Nintendo Wii exclusive. Truly, we are dealing with some next-level shit here. Pick a rider, get your wardrobe sorted, hit the slopes and wave the Wii-mote around like a loon while trying to pull off all manner of life-impairing tricks. It’s not big, it’s not clever, but it’s a big, fat fun-stamp with your forehead written all over it. MB
GUILTY GEAR JUDGMENT PSP
Two? For the price of one? There could be some mileage in that idea. Guilty Gear is a beat ’em up that’s, like, so seriously old school it actually box.. Amazing. As smells of sweat-streaked joysticks right out of the box exemplified by this pack’s Guilty Gear X2 Reload,, it combines classic oneon-one action with chunky cartoon graphics, insane specials and intricate Judgment, combos. But the ketchup on this gaming hot-dog is Guilty Gear Judgment a side-scrolling 2-D fighter lovingly reminiscent of SEGA’s brilliant Streets of Rage.. Excitement? People have been sedated for less. MB
CHAMPIONSHIP MANAGER 2007 PS2
Stretching the definition of ‘game’ to its fullest limit, Championship Manager returns for a new iteration. We know! It took us completely by surprise. By now, you really should know what this means – it’s maths homework with pictures, autism disguised as sport. But still, people seem to dig it. The usual tweaks and upgrades apply – a better back end (snigger), slimmer transfer model (chortle) and a generally more accessible tone (erm, guffaw). It’s still not really something to ‘play’, but if you liked the last one, you’ll get on with this like a pig in… a sty. Or something. MB
OUT NOW THE No.1 GAME ON PSP 39
KILLING YOURSELF TO LIVE: 85% OF A TRUE STORY Chuck Klosterman, Faber.
Chuck Klosterman is my new best friend. Road-trip across the States in his passenger seat and you’ll understand why. In Killing Yourself to Live Chuck drives to America’s most famous rock ‘n’ roll death spots. The idea is to understand why a musician’s credibility soars when they hit the grave – and listen to 600 CDs along the way. The result is a wad of hilarious digressions on the seductions of life: falling in love, taking drugs, being a rock journalist, reliving your youth, becoming a legend after you die – and the unglamorous reality of it all. It’s that compulsory conversation with a kooky stranger at 3am in your university dorm. A stream-of-consciousness masterpiece (without the dodgy grammar). ANDREA KURLAND
CBGB: DECADES OF GRAFFITI
Introduction by Richard Hell, Mark Batty Publisher.
Late last year New York’s punk elite gathered on the Lower East Side to mourn a cultural great. CBGB, the music club that spawned punk rock and provided the Ramones with a squalid stage, kicked out its last thrift-store junkie and closed its doors. This flick-through photo-book captures the club’s graffitied space in all its rancid glory. Preserving three decades of angst and anarchist sentiment, it’s a monument to ‘time spent wasted’. Beautiful filth. AK
BABYLON’S BURNING: FROM PUNK TO GRUNGE Clinton Heylin, Viking.
We all know the Sex Pistols liked to tell old guys to fuck off on national TV. We know Kurt Cobain wasn’t too keen on life. But we don’t all know where punk began, why it lived and died in a decade and a half, and how unknown bands like Dr Feelgood had rock critics hailing the dawn of a new musical epoch. But Clinton Heylin does. And along with insights from people who rocked out before punk was named, he’s here to enlighten you. Hardcore music buffs beware: your dinner party spiel is about to reach new heights. Friends of hardcore music buffs: prepare to be educated. This is Punk History 101, and then some. AK
SPANK THE MONKEY
BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Die Gestalten Verlag.
Bridging the gap between high art and the ‘looser world of youth culture’ is no mean feat. BALTIC’s Spank the Monkey showcases artists with enough balls for the job. A crisp layout does justice to work from a spectrum of talent: Ed Templeton, Faile, Barry McGee and human enigma Banksy are all in the mix. But the sweet spot lies in a sturdy preface exploring the guerrilla tactics used to reclaim public space as an art canvas. The kids are alright. AK
KRAMERS ERGOT 6
Edited by Sammy Markham, Gingko Press firstname.lastname@example.org.
Comics are cool. But if you subscribe to the myth of acne-ridden geekdom, prepare to suck it up: Kramers Ergot 6 has enough kaleidoscopic talent to convert the visually impaired. Dark, funny, scribbled, painted – this pick ‘n’ mix of graphic narratives has more variety than a family bucket of KFC. So forget Beano: tell Archie where to go. Avant-garde comics are where it’s at. AK
T H G I L I TW TIDE It’s the noise that wakes me – a sound like strips being torn off the sky and the echo of slow-motion explosions. I roll out of my sleeping bag and unzip the tent, only to find Bijan already half into his wetsuit. By his feet are the blackened remains of last night’s barbecue, the dog ends of a dead baguette and a plastic bag filled with salad leaves and rainwater. He looks confused. “I thought I saw Mrs Hendry,” he says. “What?” “Our old school-dinner lady. She just walked by with a dog and smiled like she recognised me, but she didn’t say anything.” By now I’m pulling on my own wetsuit, a welcome buffer against the wind off the Welsh hills. I look up at a colourless sky and a pale disc that could be the sun or the moon, or neither. “Well, there’s no one here now,” I say, passing Bijan his board and watching as rainwater beads and rolls on the greying wax. We begin walking towards the dunes that shield the ocean from view, that thunderous roll beyond more terrifying with every step.
“Remember when she caught me flicking ink on Douglas Rayner’s shirt in the lunch queue?” I hear panic rising in Bijan’s voice as our bare feet meet sand and we begin hiking up the dunes. “She said she’d be keeping an eye on me from that day forwards. I never thought she meant it.” “That was twenty-five years ago,” I say. Another boom, this one so brutal that I have to close my eyes against the reverb. “Even if she’s still alive, do you honestly think she’d recognise you?” He doesn’t answer. Or maybe he does and I just don’t hear him. Either way, all that matters now is the sight that meets us at the top of those dunes. The ocean is closer than I’ve ever seen it, a supernatural twilight tide that engulfs the entire beach. The waves are rolling in from almost a mile out to sea in uninterrupted walls of water maybe thirty-feet high, breaking with such colossal force that I find myself shouting to be heard above the roar. “What do you think?” Bijan is slowly shaking his head. “I think we’re going to die out there.” “Maybe. Maybe not. Do you remember what we did last night?” He looks up, the spitting image of our old man in this strange half dawn. “No.” “Me neither. All the signs point to a barbecue in that field back there, but I’m sure I spent last night with friends at a Moroccan restaurant in South London. One of them got so drunk that he ended up taking a piss on a Lamborghini parked on Clapham High Street. I certainly don’t remember driving to the Gower.” He takes in our desolate surroundings with a wide sweep of his arm. “So you think none of this is really happening?” “I’ve got a sneaking suspicion that I have maybe ten minutes left before my alarm goes off. After that I’ll have to roll out of bed still stinking of booze and cycle into the office. Assuming I remembered to set my alarm.” The wind picks up and I find myself struggling to hold onto my board. “It would certainly explain your dinner lady.” “It would,” says Bijan. “But who’s to say this is your dream and not mine? What if you’re already on your bike and I’m the one oversleeping? I’m supposed to be on ward rounds at 7am this morning.” “Does it matter? We’re both here now.” I look out onto that crashing landscape of towering glass mountains and imagine the weight of all that water shifting beneath me. “So, what do you say to catching a few big waves before one or both of us wakes up?” Bijan smiles and hitches his board up under his arm, and the next thing I know we’re sprinting down the dunes towards the white skirt of the sea, enormous black birds wheeling backwards overhead. Cyrus Shahrad
Published on Mar 1, 2007
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