Skinnie Magazine Issue 113

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CONFESSIONS OF AN ECO-TERROIST Director Peter Brown’s Latest Film Reveals Some Interesting Truths


UGH, LAWYERS TNT’s New Series Franklin & Bash Borders on Dramedy.


SOUNDS OF SERENITY Explosions In The Sky Make Magic


PUNK AS FUCK Cerebral Ballzy is Just That


DISASTER ON THE DANCEFLOOR Holy Ghost! Does It For The Hipsters




A GIANT AMONG GIANTS Kelly Slater - Nuff Said.


WHEELZ OF STEEL Aaron Fotheringham of Nitro Circus is FUCKING Amazing!


BALLING OUT OF CONTROL Reno 911’s Tom Lennon and Ben Garant Show You How To Make Flicks for Cash


PUNK ROCK BOWLING 13 Whew, My Liver Still Hurts






EDITOR’S LETTER| July 2011 J ISSUE #113 10184 Sixth St. Suite A Rancho Cucamonga, Ca. 91730 Ph. 909-476-0270 Fax 909-476-5931

The “poppa wasn’t

Rolling” edition


PUBLISHERS Jimmy Clinton and George Giordano ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

EDITORIAL Editor-In-Chief Ramon Gonzales Jasen T. Davis, Alex Mendoza, Eric Bonholtzer, Katie Evans, Kristie Bertucci, Patrick Douglas, Lacy Ottenson, Elysia McMahan, Ben Marazzi, MM Zonoozy, Katie Evans, James Gobee, Contributing Writers

For editorial submissions, email ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ART & DESIGN Art department

Morgan Desmond, Meloki Morgan Carrol

Client Service Representative


PHOTOGRAPHY Michael Vincent, Alan Rivera, Sean Myers, Joanna Miriam, Dave Gatson, Karen Curley, Harmony Gerber, Edison Graff, Amanda Davies, Angela Jugon, Timothy Sheppard, Erik Faiivae, Christian Sosa, Tammy Rapp, Todd Scheuerell Contributing Photographers


Sales & Marketing Marketing Director

Jason Zahler David Pham Christopher Pena, Kevin Whetstine, Ashley Biering Denise Moraga, Stephanie Tula and Julius Lopez


Business Development

For all sales inquiries email ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Administrative Kevin Whetstine House Of Designs Morgan Desmond Contributing Staff Angela Jugon Raquel Lopez, Cynthia De Los Santos and Ryan Mercer Promotion Director Webmaster

online editor

Apparently, he threw a refrigerator once. No joke. Not too sure of the specifics, but what I can tell you, is even at 28, my dad still scares the shit out of me. Don’t get me wrong, he wasn’t the guy who put hands on us as kids ever, but even as an impressionable youth, one of the few certainties I had in my back pocket was my dad was NOT to be fucked with. In fact, his stories of neighborhood battles and adolescent machismo kind of disguised my sissiness. I rode the coattails of being the son of one of the neighborhood’s toughest, despite being a complete pussy myself. My pop moved here from Mexico when he was just 8 years old. The first Mexican family in an all black neighborhood equated to he and his brothers getting the shit beat out of them on a daily. School was a battleground. By junior high school, my dad had won the respect of the neighborhood by way of his own two fists. In complete contrast, by the time I was in sixth grade I was writing poems and spending all my lawnmowing money on jewelry from JCPenny for scumbag girls. (Well, they eventually became scumbags) For the longest time I would always wonder how the hell my Dad didn’t snap for having such a pantywaist kid. I walked taller knowing that if ever anyone messed with me, I would have the best kind of backup, but I also secretly felt embarrassed that I was just riding the coattails of my dad’s toughness. As an adult, my respect for my Dad has only grown. He wasn’t the guy who would hug you and give you long talks about your feelings, but he was the guy who would spend a whole week’s pay on a pair of Nike’s for you, despite how ugly they were. His affection for his kids was manifested in the drastic changes he made to always make us his priority. My dad will tell you himself, trouble was never far away, but his ability to keep it at arm’s length was the best example of just how much he cared for his boys.


FASHION Michelle Ngo Heather Choi and Christina Pham

Fashion Director Fashion Coordinators

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------SUBSCRIBERS If the post office alerts us that your magazine is undeliverable, we have no further obligation unless we receive a corrected address within two years. LEGAL DISCLAIMER The content in this magazine is for entertainment and intended for mature audiences only. Advertisers are responsible for their ads placed in the magazine. Skinnie Magazine is not responsible for any actions taken by their readers. We may occasionally use images placed in public domain. Sometimes, it is not possible to identify and/or contact the copyright holder, if you claim ownership of something we’ve published, we will gladly make a proper acknowledgement. Skinnie Magazine does not share opinions and/ or views stated by the writers and or photographers. Some of the content published may be of a mature nature; we do not, in any way, condone underage drinking or any other illegal activity. All submissions become property of Skinnie Magazine, be it text, photos, art, etc. Skinnie Entertainment Magazine All Rights Reserved. 2011

My dad is better than your dad. It’s not an insult, it’s just how every son should feel. Thanks Pop -

Ramon Gonzales


Cover Photo by Jeff Hornbaker







Nerd Alert

Why Buy The Same Old Boring Shit Soda Stream “Pure”

Disney’s Pixie Dust

Samsung Galaxy Tab

MacBeth Footwear X Devo

A coffeemaker just seems so boring now. The U.S. based company Soda Stream has created an in home soda making appliance that allows you to turn whatever flavors you dig into fizzy refreshment. It takes all of 30-seconds to turn plain water into carbonated goodness and with the convenient flavor additions, the combinations are seriously endless.

Disney is really the only company that can reach otherwise rooted adults with crafty, cutesy marketing gimmicks. Part of the new Disney line of fragrances for both home and person, this Tinkerbell inspired scent bottles “citrus sorbet, candied fruits, and summer rain” for the adult woman. Hey, if Paris Hilton can get her scent bottled, I can’t wait to see what Disney cranks out.

What the fuck is an iPad? Lighter and thinner, The Galaxy Tab comes equipped with all the basics you need in a tablet (Honeycomb, Android, etc.) but also features a 8-megapixel back camera and a 2-megapixel front camera, this means sexting with insanely clarity. Not to mention that the connectivity speeds are on par with anything with an Apple on it. The drawback, the USB or HDMI ports – bummer.

Establishing a reputation for being one of music history’s most innovative creators, DEVO has teamed up with MacBeth Footwear to launch their exclusive Studio Project Shoe. In true DEVO form, the design is nothing less than fashion forward crafted from 3M reflective textiles and 100 percent vegan products. These are the kicks DEVO actually wears onstage.





Danny Elfman & Tim Burton 25th Anniversary Music Box

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Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure (1985), to Edward Scissorhands (1990), from The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), to the remake of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005), the list of cinematic genius both Elfman and Burton have teamed to create is all in one place. Along with demo tapes, foreign language songs, exclusive footage and Dense Macabre, a 260+ book that chronicles the life and work of this unparalleled duo. $499.99

Actress Manlin Akerman







a Whale

of a Tale The Confessions of Peter Brown and His Crew of Media Pirates


Before we get into this let me first mention that I don’t hate the environment. I like the environment. I have no problem with baby seals, I think shooting spears at whales like a 2011 version of Captain Ahab is uncool, and even though I often find my roommates recycling system flawed and unnecessarily confusing I do my best to make sure my Mountain Dew cans end up in the right receptacle. With that in mind I’d like to state that I am highly conflicted over the footage presented in the film Confessions of An Eco-Terrorist. In one of the film’s early

Words By Ben Nine-K

scenes a group of environmentalists known as The Sea Shepherd Society find themselves in an altercation with a group of seal hunters and it is very clear a few minutes into the segment that the hunters’ dialogue has been added in post. This brings up a moral dilemma. Yes the killing of seals is wrong, however is it ok to bluff a little so long as you’re one of the good guys? Furthermore, at what point does journalistic integrity become second to the messagewe hope to convey?



If you aren’t familiar with the Sea Shepherd Society, and its larger than life leader Paul Watson, you should be. Watson parted ways with Greenpeace in the late 70’s and since then has traveled around the world heading a group of highly passionate environmentalists who seek justice for marine life no matter what the cost. The Sea Shepherd Society is not a protest group restricted to signs and clever chants but instead an overt force that uses whatever means necessary (including smoke bombs, the throwing of rotten eggs, and the ever popular ramming of another ship) to uphold environmental law. According to the U.N. Charter for Nature, the governments of the world do not protect the oceans or enforce international regulations in the high seas and therefore it is technically legal for non-governmental organizations (like Sea Shepherd) to enforce such laws. Many became familiar with Watson and his group of environmental pirates through the hit TV show Whale Wars as well as the hours and hours worth of footage that has surfaced over the years of the Sea Shepherd Society literally smashing into enemy ships, fighting with poachers, and being pelted with rocks. Although many have seen the footage of Watson and his team, few are aware that a man named Peter Brown is responsible for these often times jaw-dropping images. Peter Brown has traveled alongside Watson and his crew for the past 30 years collecting video of the group’s amazing adventures. As a former NBC employee, Brown’s background is mainly in entertainment, but after profiling Watson for a television piece he became highly interested in the green movement and began traveling along with them shooting footage of their campaigns. As his contribution



to the environmental cause he decided to take the film he shot while with Watson and distribute it to various news outlets so that journalists could tell Paul’s story and generate awareness for environmental causes. After many years of work, Brown suffered an injury and was forced to take an 8-month break from life on the high seas. In an attempt to further his cause he decided that he would spend his involuntary shore leave compiling all of his tapes into a documentary about his travels. For the first time Brown would tell his own version of the Sea Shepherd Society’s story. I spoke with Peter Brown before I was able to view the documentary. He explained the Society’s purpose in clearer detail, “Sea Shepherd over the years was a very small group. Like an acupuncture needle, we would find an issue that we thought we could make a difference in and we would go in there and jab it and make sure everyone was aware that it was happening”. Brown leaves no gray area when it comes to his title, he doesn’t consider himself a “news man”, his background, first and foremost, is in entertainment. He’s not a journalist per say, but he has a keen eye for what it is that will get journalists talking. What first strikes me is that although most of the press surrounding the film identifies it as an environmental piece, meant to alert people to the plight of many endangered species, when I finally view the documentary I find it has very little to do with the causes presented on the one-sheet. Confessions is not a film about the environment, but instead is an overview of what it apparently takes to make people

care about the environment. Paul Brown can discuss his ecological causes in depth during interviews about his movie (which he does), but when you really sit down and dissect his documentary, even though in the interview Brown asserts that his film is first and foremost about the cause, Confessions is really an expose of a goal that frequently sacrifices reality in pursuit of the perfect story. The thesis of the film comes into play about a half hour into the documentary. As I watched the footage of yet another Sea Shepherd mission, the narrator, Brown, asserts that, “perception in our world outranks reality” and that “much like poker, a little bluff goes a long-way”. I suddenly realized that Paul was right and even I had bought into the hype of the Eco-Terrorist with little more than a one-minute trailer and a few press clippings. Before sitting down to watch the DVD, my pro-recycling roommates and I had made sure dinner was finished, as the buzz surrounding the movie had warned of grueling gruesome footage involving seal skinners, whale harpooners, and all around mean people inflicting unnecessary harm on wildlife in bays full of blood. What’s interesting is that this portion of the film takes up very little screen time. It would seem Brown, the ultimate environmental media-puppet master had made a trailer that merely hinted that his film was shocking and gory, and the residents of my apartment had fell for it hook line and sinker. This little example is what Confessions is really about. What we’re watching is not environmental data, but instead a behind the scenes description of what it takes to make people pay attention to environmental data. Making people interested in the ocean is no easy task. Brown knows that what people like is drama and entertainment so Watson and his gang spend most of their time looking for trouble (and in some cases manufacturing it). On one such occasion after waiting days for some sort of something to happen involving an Indian tribe’s traditional whale hunt, one of the crew members gets in a small boat and proceeds to buzz the tribesman on the shore until the onlookers decide to pelt the boat with rocks. Later, one of The Shepherd’s crewmembers is ordered to get in a boat and purposely trespass on the beach so that she gets arrested. At one point Watson speaks to the woman over the radio, “you gotta get on that dock. Just jump on that goddamn dock.You got all the TV cameras”. At first, the footage is confusing, because logic tells us that getting hit with rocks will in no way save whales, but what we forget is that Brown’s use of the media often times borders on brilliant. If the entire purpose of The Sea Shepherd Society is to draw attention to important causes, it’s Brown’s stranglehold of the “entertainment as journalism” concept that makes it possible. As he mentions earlier, “perception” outranks reality. If getting pelted with rocks is what it takes to get the attention of TV cameras, the Sea Shepherd Society will proceed to speed through as many harbors as it takes to get that air time. As long as the cameras are rolling they will do anything. The whole theory is validated in the last few moments of the film’s final story arc. The Sea Shepherd group loads their ship with journalists (including a purposely placed Dutch movie star) and heads to the Faeroe Islands where Pilot Whales are being slaughtered. After posing in front of film cameras and shooting tape after tape of B-roll for the journalists on board, customs officials as well as police officers attempt to board the ship and are denied. The commotion is enough to attract a boat full of media journalists and Brown is able to sum up the entire point of his film, as well as The Sea Shepherd Society’s mission, in one shot. As the cameras roll,Watson stands proudly on the deck of his ship and lectures the tiny boat of journalists on the importance of conservation and ecology. One man’s action is only as important as those who see it, and today the Sea Shepherd crew has received a boat full of proof that their plan is working. It doesn’t matter that we didn’t get to see Watson hugging a Pilot Whale, or that the ship didn’t get pelted with rocks, or that the under water speaker system they were using to impress the onboard reporters was clearly a fake. Brown’s message is that all of these elements are forgivable so long as at the end of the day there’s someone holding a camera, with access to an audience bigger than your own. It doesn’t matter if the footage presented in Confessions of an Eco-Terrorist is real or fake, what matters is that you just read over 1,500 words about the slaughtering of baby seals, and that’s all Peter Brown really wanted in the first place.








Breckin Meyer and Mark-Paul Gosselaar Walk The Line Between Drama and Comedy By Patrick Douglas


If you’re looking for a legal team who will put a nicely shaped woman on the stand and have her remove her top in an effort to distract the jury, look no further than Jared Franklin and Peter Bash. They’re not your average defense team, more resembling a couple of college dropouts on spring break. They’re the type of lawyers you’d want to hire if you wanted to go out for drinks after a day in court. TNT is bringing the duo out as part of their summer programming and while there have been other shows with lackadaisical lawyers in the past, there hasn’t been a team like this before. “I don’t watch a ton of procedurals, but when I read this script, what I liked is

that we went home with the characters,” said Breckin Meyer, who plays Jared Franklin. “They live together and we really get to know them. I like that we follow two single street lawyers who have lives outside of the courtroom.” “There are some clever one-liners (too). We have some great writers,” added co-star Mark-Paul Gosselaar. “And a lot of those one-liners come from Breckin and myself bantering and just having a good time with the material. (What) stood out immediately in reading this (was) the comedy, the bromance, if you will, of the two main characters.” The two actors offer up roles where we don’t see the typical straight man thrown in with the goofball. They’re both a little immature and each one has a



way of bringing a winning attitude to the courtroom when it matters most.While the show is certainly a comedy, there’s still a fine line that has to be walked in order to prevent it from being disrespectful to the legal system. According to Meyer, that’s a factor that is taken seriously by the writers. “It has to dance the line,” he said. “Bill Chais, one of our co-creators of the show, was a public defender for many years, and we lean to Bill often. I say, ‘Look, I understand that this is fun and this is good for the show and it moves the story along, but can it happen?’ There’s a lot of ‘Can this happen?’ So long as there are consequences, repercussions to our actions, I’m happy to have us take the unorthodox approach to the legal system.” Jared and Peter share a home with two other members of their legal team and it more often resembles a frat house than a respectable lawyer’s pad. Peter is the ladies’ man while Bash is more of the sarcastic jokester of the two. They’re leveled out by their boss, Stanton Infeld (Malcolm McDowell) who always seems to trust them with high profile cases that come with impossible odds. Adding the stoic McDowell to the cast helped give the show an added element of superior acting, says Meyer. “He is absolutely a living legend and if anyone has earned the right to be a diva, it’s Malcolm,” he said. “Not knowing what to expect and he came on the set and he was just unbelievable. He was just awesome. He would fuck with me during takes … just to keep it exciting. He’s been in this business so long and he’s seen every jackass thing you can see.” While Jared and Peter are both goofy in their own way, there has to be somewhat of a separation of personalities to make the chemistry work, according to Meyer. “Mark-Paul’s character, Peter Bash, is fantastic with a jury. They love to swim in his baby blues and he’ll take them down whatever path he wants them to. Jared’s more like a dog going after a tennis ball in a bush. He’ll go head first and deal with the thorns later. Jared’s definitely got more moxy than I do. (He’s also) really kind of almost off the chart remarkably good looking,” Meyer said jokingly about his character. “For me, the challenge is to keep Jared fresh and keep him real so it’s



not just uber whacky.” “Peter enjoys the process. He doesn’t see that the tables are uneven. He feels that because he’s a defense attorney that he can find those loopholes and kind of stick it to the man,” said Gosselaar of his role. “He’s an assassin in the courtroom. He knows how to be a surgeon with the jury.” On the pilot, Peter shows his bare ass while getting out of a hot tub and plays guitar in his office. Both things won’t be recurring images for viewers, explained Gosselaar. “I do carry the guitar with me throughout the whole season. I do carry my ass with me the whole season as well, except I don’t expose either after the pilot episode,” he said. “Thankfully they have not forced me to drop my pants more than once throughout the season. That was actually a very uncomfortable scene for me to shoot.To be standing on a set in front of 100 extras in a hot tub, naked, is not something I look forward to going to work to do.” Gosselaar is widely known for playing a young Zack Morris in the early ‘90s show, “Saved By The Bell,” while Meyer has become known for his big screen roles in flicks like “Garfield,” “Road Trip,” and “Clueless.” The two men, who had briefly met at an airport years ago, weren’t all that familiar with each other prior to filming the pilot.They got to know each other quite quickly once the show kicked off, according to Meyer. “We were shooting the pilot in Atlanta and we were kind of locked in confinement and we would basically go to work, come home, eat dinner in one of our rooms, and work. We got to know each other real well and we felt really good when we finished the pilot,” said Meyer of his friendship with Gosselaar (whom he jokingly referred to as “the guy from that show with the bell.”) “We ended up taking a trip to Hawaii together, solidifying more of the romantic getaway there.” “We tried dating and that was a bit awkward,” added Gosselaar with a laugh. “We take the work seriously, but not each other,” Meyer explained. “As he can tell you from the numerous ‘Saved By The Bell,’ references I made on set.”



bass & treble



Texas born

40 deep Explosions In The Sky Take Care of Their Fans


The wind picked up on a crisp evening at the end of April as the guitars swirled to a climax, only to eerily slow again once the melodies softened. The majority of the crowd sat upon blankets while a small number huddled around the stage. Everyone remained silent, in awe. The spooky atmosphere added to an overall bittersweet and comforting evening. Explosions in the Sky glided from one song to another on stage in a corner of the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, leaving some audience members trembling in their stockings, tears flowing freely, and others stomping in their boots, overpowered by the sounds. “Our fans are quite spectacular in their loyalties and their devotion to the sound,” said Munaf Rayani, one of the three Texan guitarists in the band, of the meaning fans place unto the music. “We’ve heard some really heavy things, like ‘You helped me stay alive. I was ready to kill myself, and then listening to your album helped me stay around,’ I mean, that’s heavy to hear from somebody. Or, that a couple walked down the aisle to one of our songs, that’s beautiful. Another was saying how it bonded them and their grandparents over some songs, something that they related to in showing them their catalog of music.” Formed in 1999, the Texas-based post-rock (as much as they may wish to deny the genre) quartet has released six studio albums, the latest of which – titled “Take Care, Take Care, Take Care” – dropped this year. Six songs long, the collection remains under the umbrella of their former sound while featuring

By Katie Evans

different melodies and beats than before and even vocal loops, something entirely new for the band. “The way we’re kind of instructing melodies is a bit unusual in comparison to the rest of our catalog,” Rayani said. “There’s a handful of people that might say that it’s the same old thing, but then I don’t really think they’re listening, because an evolution definitely felt like it was in play here. I think that putting years into this thing and as you become older and as your thinking changes and your perspectives are altered, I think all of this influences the way the music sounds now, which has to be different than what we’ve done before, because we are a little bit different than we were before.” Over the years, Explosions in the Sky members (in addition to Rayani – Mark Smith, guitar; Michael James – guitar, bass; Chris Hrasky, drums) have undergone many changing events. In 2000, the band The American Analog Set submitted Explosion’s demo to their label with a note saying,“This totally fucking destroys.” Now, the band plays sold out shows across the country, and internationally. “I’m going to quote Jay-Z on this one and say, I don’t know if we chose music, or if the music chose us,” Rayani said. “Sometimes, you just end up doing things without really knowing how you’re doing it. I was into music at a young age, I was just around it, but even befriending the fellows in the band – I was young,



I was 14 years old when I met all of them, and they further took what I already liked about music and helped me love it even more. We did it on the side, we did it as a solace, as an escape to whatever it is that we had going on in our lives, be it counter jobs or whatever we were doing to pass the days.Then at night, we would play music and kind of lose ourselves in it and then soon, music started to eclipse everything. It started to take care of us, meaning, it allowed us to eat and keep the electricity on and then it was allowing us to see the world.” During the transition from side project to full-time job, the band has been through plenty, ranging from media chaos about a possible connection with the 9/11 attacks, writing an entire album in eight days and scoring the television series Friday Night Lights. More recently, Explosions played Radio City Music Hall before having a visual interpretation art show at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery where six different artists each took a song to interpret in a visual manner.Yet still, the band remains humble, accrediting much of their success to their crew and friends, “We are a village.You think that there’s only four of us, no, there are 40 of us. They’re all putting their hands up and pushing us along and I think that all of our friends who aren’t on stage with us also feel like it’s their band. That will be my greatest and fondest memory, who we surrounded ourselves with.” “It’s all just daydreaming,” Rayani said with a laugh. “How can this sound, how can this music that we’re playing without saying a single word, be attracting this many people? We’re trying, very hard, to not just make a good sound, to make a great sound, but to make a beautiful sound, and if that can sustain, if that can outlive us, then boy, I’ll feel as though we really did our part. It’s just that ­– leave a good sound behind and for anybody who hears it to say, ‘Yeah, man, they did something good. They did something right.’” Many fans and critics have said just that about their latest album, “Take Care, Take Care, Take Care.” The record itself came from a long work process, starting four years ago, slowly. After half that time, the steam began to pick up and it became “a process like all processes in which we show each other melodies, play them, like



them, don’t like them, talk about them, think about them, sit quietly, play them again, and then the album is done.” From the entire album, Munaf Rayani’s favorites are “Let Me Back In” because of the “real smooth, and slow and almost seductive beat to it, that in some ways is reminiscent of some hip hop,” as well as the opener track “Last Known Surroundings.” As a whole, however, Explosions in the Sky’s music has always been, to the fans, more about the feeling received than anything. “Like a lot of our albums, where we try to focus in on a hopeful sound, even though many parts of or music have a decent hint of sadness or longing, we try to be aware of excitement and positive feelings throughout this record,” Rayani said. “Even the sentiment of ‘Take Care, Take Care, Take Care,’ in our eyes, is a bit of a sweet one. Offering that sweetness, that kindness, excitement, these are the things we were after on our new album.” “I don’t know if you ever get sad or worried about things, but we do too, and I think all humans do,” Rayani said of the emotional qualities presented in their songs. “Those things, I feel, will always find their way into our music. The darkness, the true darkness of our music is not anything on the surface for any of us. For the most part, we’re a bunch of comedians.We tell jokes a lot to each other, we laugh a lot, we try to enjoy the sun and the clear skies. But, I think inside, all of those things, all those emotions that you feel from joy to sadness, they’re all there, and we try and do our best to interpret that into a sound and into a melody. By no means are we dressed in all black, walking with our heads down or anything to that degree.” Despite the lack of gothic gear and brooding personas, the foursome played a sold out show at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, where many attendees commented on how suitable their music was for such a venue. After hours of striking wonder into the audience, Munaf Rayani only exited the stage before exclaiming across the crowds, “Thank you for spending the evening with us and the dead, so let’s keep living!”



bass & treble



A fresh take

on the familiar Cerebral Ballzy Doesn’t Over Think It


Punk’s origins were no accident. In the mid ‘70s what was classified as “Rock ‘n Roll” music was stamped on tame, mainstream-friendly acts such as Billy Joel and Simon & Garfunkel – the entire definition of a once loud and rebellious form of music eschewed by the softer musings of musically competent groups that severely lacked the edge that once represented the genre of Rock ‘n Roll. A particular sub-culture of listeners was alienated as a result, as there were no desires for a fine-tempered product amongst a particular set of younger, estranged crowd; just the desire for something unapologetic, brash, raw, powerful and above all else: honest. Such music had yet to manifest – the charts dominated by the likes of Disco and hippies promoting their anti-establishment, free peace values. The balance was shifting to say the least, until groups such as The Stooges and The Kinks were experimenting with the sound that would eventually become what is known as Punk. But whereas the issues in the ‘70s dealt with the lack of something that catered to a musically exiled audience, what was once deemed as pure and honest has undergone a series of dramatic shifts; most of which have been wholly rejected at large by Punk purists. The Pop punk antics of the industry have become commonplace, relegating those bands who are still loyal the traditions of the

By Alex Mendoza

genre as the underground sub sect far beneath the radar. Blink-182 and Sum 41 are the supposed messengers of the genre, which once belonged to musical ambassadors such as The Clash, The Ramones and The Sex Pistols; the iconic legends that delivered the pyrokinetic velocity of Punk to a wider audience. Its power could not be refuted, even by those who were still attuned to the likes of ABBA, The Bee Gees or whatever other artist/ group came to mind. The completely gritty, unpolished nature of Punk was its primary allure; the idea of dabbling with something completely volatile and destructive was invigorating. Thankfully, history has a way of repeating itself. This time it arrives in the form of the New York City Punk band, Cerebral Ballzy. Now we’re all fully aware that New York is infamous for housing a plethora of “new” bands looking to break through the saturation of acts hoping to reinvent the wheel. But opposed to acts such as The Strokes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs , Interpol and Vampire Weekend – fans of which tend to be a haughtier, uppity social circle, Cerebral Ballzy’s musical exploits are a return to Punk form; the bombastic fusion of ear-piercing volumes, propulsive drum set rhythms and furious guitar riffs utilized to full effect. Untamed and unpredictable – the perfect bedfellows of the genre.



“We’re not looking to do something new,” lead singer Honor Mason explains. “We’re just trying to do something cool. We all have our particular interests. We all have the bands we’ve grown up listening to. The ones we like. All of those experiences make up who we are. But at the same time we’re just trying to make music we can all enjoy. That’s what it’s about.” Cerebral Ballzy’s music is wonderfully nostalgic of the turbo-charged Punk sound of the ‘80s – transfixed on a rush of adrenaline and mercilessly assaulting the listener’s senses. The title of their songs border on a slightly immature kitsch, but such is the spirit is about adhering to whatever comes to mind. Not a single inhibition – regardless of how “silly”, and with song titles like “Skate All Day” and “Underage Drink Forever”, you’ll immediately identify that these guys have fun with the music they create. The creative process is far from a chore and this unrestrained sense of energy is resonating with an ever-growing audience of fans emerging from the woodwork – along with a few big names. Among them – Rick Rubin – who has been spotted at a few shows from time to time checking out the group and their enjoyable live shows. Picture the cramped rooms of small bars, or the musty basements filled to the brim with people eager to experience something wholly genuine. Nothing is judged on the merit of showmanship, or musical proficiency, but rather a form of self-expression. “Punk is about doing what you want. You look at our name and there’s meaning behind it. There are a lot of inner thoughts in all of us and our music about acknowledging that part of ourselves. We’re trying to relate to the inner-city kids, and of course it’s also a play on words. We’re trying to relate to what they’re thinking, because all of our music is charged by personal experience.“ The shows are comparable to a bomb exploding in the midst of a crowd, unleashing a frenzy that threatens to shake the very foundations of any facility brave enough to house the Punk brigade. Each of them absorbed in the moment



and the crowd reacts with the unabashed energy and response that heralds the arrival of something of sound importance. To the fans this is just more than just music. It’s an escape – one that Cerebral Ballzy is all too willing to provide. “America doesn’t get it, you know?” Honor reflects upon the state of music in America, as well as in the Punk industry. “There’s so much boring, monotonous shit out there. Whatever happened to something being different? That’s what I’m wondering. People don’t seem to be concerned with that, and it’s not the main thing we focus on. “But that’s definitely why we strive to be different. And going on tour in the UK and seeing a lot of new people – not just the same age groups – but old people and young people is nice. It shows us that this music is an art form. It’s a big part of who we are, and growing up in New York helped shape our sound and what we’ve come to like and dislike. But touring has been a great tool in showing all types of people what this genre is capable of. It’s more than just noise.” Even with the manner upon which they conduct themselves, or playfully respond with some senseless banter tossed in between to lighten the mood, the group is attuned to the idea of constantly having fun with whatever comes their way. This spirit clearly runs through the music – a misleading collection of riffs and vocals that sound as if the band were on their improvisational “A” game, hit record and simply went to town in the booth. So even amidst the cacophony of sound, there is rarely a sense of disconnection. The group manages to maintain the listener’s position in the eye of the storm. In most instances one would be more than eager to depart. Yet therein lays the group’s primary strength: the twisted charm that comes into the play the moment discomfort rears its head – an ever-expanding musical miasma that will envelop anyone that stands in its captivating, destructive path.

So rest easy. Punk is safe after all.



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Holy Ghost! It’s All About the Ooooooooh Factor

By Kristie Bertucci Photos by Ruvan Wijesooriva


Holy Ghost!’s music is so rad that the band placed an exclamation mark on the end of their moniker to better emphasize the quality of tunes they create. Well, maybe. Nonetheless it’s well deserved, as exemplified through such songs like “Hold On,” “Static on the Wire,” and “Say My Name,” all off their self-titled release that dropped this Spring. In layman terms, it’s an album you’ll dig from start to finish, which is quite rare these days given all the musical bullshit that keeps spewing out from the depths of the music industry. While this isn’t an album review, knowing the effect Holy Ghost!’s first LP will have on you really helps paint the picture of the type of band they are. Comprised of childhood friends Alex Frankel and Nick Millhiser, Holy Ghost!’s music will cause a stir on any dance floor, turning any soirée into a party rocking session thanks to their disco-laced, too-cool-for-school pop-ish vibes that once make their way into your blood stream immediately force you to move. Confessing that a lot of “blood, sweat and tears,” went into making the album, Frankel also adds that he and Millhiser didn’t want to just limit themselves to an album that would only be played in clubs, but something fans could listen to anywhere or time. “We’re more than happy with the record,” he gushes. “It’s just exciting that we’re able to make music and play it for a living.” Grateful to live life doing what they love, the duo’s musical roots go all the way back to when the guys were 7 years old in elementary school in the Big Apple. “Both Nick and I were fortunate enough to not only grow up in musical households, but we also went to a really progressive school where everyone had a band by, like, age 9…or 11, if you were a late bloomer,” Frankel describes.



Obviously, both musically inclined, Millhiser started out with the saxophone in first grade but later switched to drums after admitting to his mother how much he hated the instrument, while Frankel took up piano. By second grade, they were making sweet sounds together, but really solidified their musical passions their sophomore year in high school after forming Automato, a hip-hop group with live instrumentation and groove-based niche, with four other friends. They eventually landed a deal with Capitol Records in 2000 when they were seniors, but the group was a bit ahead of their time because hip-hop producers didn’t know what to do with their live instrumentation and things were in limbo. Automato didn’t release an actual album until 2004, thanks to some production help from DFA, who they met back in 2001. After a year, the group broke up, but Millhiser and Frankel remained friends and stayed on at DFA as studio musicians, where they worked on stuff for N.E.R.D. and UNKLE—which is really where Holy Ghost!’s story begins. Having evolved to become known more as DJ/remixes, the childhood friends started making music together again, which led to the creation of an early version of “Hold On,” and their new moniker (inspired by a song from the Bar-Kays’ with the same name). Once LCD frontman James Murphy produced and remixed the song, the guys blew up and became in-demand DJs and remixers, with requests by Moby, Phoenix, MGMT, Cut Copy and more. Fast forward to 2010 when they released their four-song EP, Static on the Wire, on DFA and Holy Ghost! solidified themselves as a legitimate and original musical entity, being asked by longtime friend James Murphy to open for LCD Soundsystem’s

2010 Summer Tour. As the well-rounded instrumentalists they are, both Millhiser and Frankel did everything for their recordings, but knew they needed some more help for live shows. They then enlisted keyboardist Eric Tonnensen, and guitarist Chris Maher to help out on their live performances (with both still part of their live show). Even before having an official album, the guys were the asked to go on tour by P-Thugg and Dave 1 of Chromeo, which Frankel describes as “an awesome then fantastic” experience. With an EP under their belt, the next major move was to drop an LP, which brings us back to the present day, with an album that includes some cool guest appearances from the likes of Luke Jenner from the Rapture, Chris Glover from Penguin Prison, and Michael McDonald. When asked to name a fave collabo, Frankel pleaded the fifth. “I don’t have a favorite. They’re all great people and serious players!” Naming influences like David Byrne, David Bowie, Gino Soccio, New Order, Tom Moulton, Larry Levan, Jay-Z, and Stevie Nicks, one can immediately tell the guys are eccentric in their own creations—whether it’s creating a remix of someone else’s work or coming up with their own. “I don’t prefer one over the other in terms of

creating stuff for ourselves or other. They’re very different things; although I guess it’s all the same to some degree,” he admits. “I don’t know—we just get together at Nick’s house and smoke a lot of cigarettes and play instruments and try to make something that makes us go ooooooooooh.” Taking that “ooooooooooh” factor, the guys have created an album filled with sensational synths, electro-fun melodies and infectious chords, which can obviously categorize Holy Ghost! as being “indie electro.” But like most bands, they’re not too fond of having labels on their music. “I can’t classify our music,” he explains. “We’ll just let the people decide.” Currently, Millhiser and Frankel are on tour with Cut Copy and are ready to show the rest of the world why that exclamation is at the end of their name. “They’re good buddies, so it should be a similar vibe as the time we toured with LCD and Chromeo,” he mentions. “A bunch of dudes taking America.” Despite being fresh off of their debut release, Holy Ghost! is already thinking ahead. “Of course, we’re thinking about our next album. There’s a lot of time in the van!”



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welcome to ‘the


Orange County’s Kottonmouth Kings write about timeless concepts…like weed

By Ben Nine-K


The first thing you notice about the KottonMouth Kings is that they’re incredibly comfortable just being the KottonMouth Kings. As Suburban Noize head-honcho and leader of the Kings himself Brad X reclines back in his chair it’s very obvious that things are going well around the office. For the past 15 years, the Kings have sold over 2 million records and toured worldwide. They’ve launched a label, released solo records, and aided in the production and release of numerous critically acclaimed albums (most recently rapper Saigon’s debut and legendary pop-punk band Unwritten Law’s return). Through all its success however the Kings have yet to enjoy any sort of mainstream acclaim.With no MTV and no major radio support the predominant amount of the band’s success has been directly tied to the groups grass roots approach to music and marketing. Recently the band parted ways with its long time member Pakelika and brought on its newest MC, Dirtball, an Oregon native who was unable to attend the interview. I sat down with Kings’ members Brad X, D-Loc, and Johnny Richter. On July 19th the band will release its 18th studio album, Sunrise Sessions. Originally planned as an entirely acoustic album, once in the studio the creativity began to flow and the group turned the idea of an acoustic EP into a full-length roots record that centered around re-cut reggae themes and melodic song structure. As Brad X explains it, “we had fun reinventing it (the band) and making it fun again. To me, that’s why this still interests me. There’s no rules.” Many bands would shy away from such musical explorations (especially after literally having 2 million shipped units to testify sticking to the formula), but the band members have no fear that their core demographic will abandon them, “our fan base allows us to do whatever the fuck we want.You can’t really categorize us as anything. KottonMouth Kings is just the KottonMouth Kings… our crowd is the most diverse and bizarre cross culture of people.” Sharing his band mates enthusiasm rapper D-Loc speaks up, “(our crowd is) mostly stoners, skaters, extreme athletes, but then we get, like, librarian looking chicks with glasses at the show or grandparents and older stoner hippies. We’re not a one dimensional band.” In regards to the band’s and dynamic the Kings are also using the Sunrise Sessions as a chance to break away from being labeled as simply a “weed band”. Traditionally associated strictly with the stoner subculture, Brad X is proud to explain that a lot of the Kings new material feels “timeless”. After a 15-year career, simple math proves that the 15-year-old kid who first picked up a Kings’ album at the beginning of their career is now quickly approaching 30. The band themselves now consists of husbands and fathers and because of their current “elder statesman” role a push toward making “songs” rather than simply weed party anthems seems necessary.“You gotta make music that connects with people, or it doesn’t matter”, Brad X explains, “We make records. We make good music. We put on good concerts. I think the music still resonates with people.” Again D-Loc speaks up, “last San Diego show a mom, a daughter, and a daughter’s daughter were there.Three generations at a show. I was like WOW how old am I again? (laughs) It was cool though. It brings a smile to my face when I see a 13 year old kid at the show.” “At the end of the day ultimately it’s the music that connects with people”, Brad X calmly explains. One of the Kings’ newest songs “In My Garden” (video released on April 20th of this year) illustrates the concept that Brad is getting at. “The song ‘In My Garden’? That could be your work, or your actions. It’s not limited just to marijuana. Our message is that if you act out of love with your words and actions. That will come back to you.” D-Loc explains, “Your garden; it could be your music, (or) your family. It could be anything.” After a brief pause Kottonmouth King’s member, Richter, stirs from his seat in the corner of the room and shrugs his shoulders, “...I wrote about weed.” The Kottonmouth Kings’ new record, Sunrise Sessions, will be available July 19th on Suburban Noize Records. The album will be followed by a summer US tour featuring all of the Kings’ members performing Kottonmouth Kings’ songs as well as solo material from their respective side project ventures.





4Devil in a

skinnie girl

Black Dress Meet Sullen Angel Jessica Harbour

So how the hell did you get into standing in front of a camera for a living? Ever since I got my braces off in high school, friends, family, even strangers have suggested I get into modeling. I’m still fresh into this industry, but I’ve been getting awesome feedback, so I can’t wait to see what’s in store for me. Big muscles, big wallets, big brains, or big ... Yeah. What’s more your style? A big... Heart obviously! I’m not superficial, a gold digger, or into supernerds. What’s most important is somebody who I can have a good time with because the money and looks get old after a while, but I’ll never want to stop having a good time. Aside from giving photographers a reason to keep living, what are your professional plans. What does the rest of 2011 hold for you? That is what I hate about this industry. Everything is so last minute, I barely know what I’ll be doing next week. Hopefully I’ll be gracing the covers of Maxim or be the next Victoria’s Secret angel, but we’ll just have to see what’s in store for me this year. How did you get involved with Sullen and what has the experience been like? They actually found me on facebook. I was pretty excited because although I got the least amount of facebook votes, I unanimously won their modeling search out of sixty ladies, with 7 out of 7 votes from the judges. When you are in front of that camera, what makes you feel sexy? What turns it on for you? What’s most important is that I feel comfortable, I just want to let loose in front of the camera. Nothing makes a more awkward photoshoot than an uptight photographer who doesn’t have a good flow when shooting. Photography is an art just like modeling is an art, not everybody has that gift. What is something most people would never guess about you? I graduated high school with a 4.5 gpa, and I’m working towards my PhD. In other words I’m not the stereotypical ditzy model, I actually have a lot of tricks up my sleeve.

Photography Michael Vincent Location MV Studios - Hollywood, CA. Wardrobe Sullen Clothing Hair/MUA Danielle Hall







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a giant among

giants 21 Years Deep, Kelly Slater, Stands Alone


Amongst the myriad of triumphs Kelly Slater possesses under his formidable competitive belt, there is one particular event that stands out. For any surfing aficionado familiar with Kelly’s extensive list of accomplishments in the surfing realm, they would claim Kelly’s two perfect scores of 20 out of 20 points in the Billabong Tahiti Pro in May 2005 as the be all, end all of all his incredible feats.; especially since the last person to achieve this was Shane Beschen in 1996, and that was utilizing an old scoring system based on threewaves opposed to the current two-wave criteria. Granted Kelly was the first person to ever manage to earn two perfect scores under the Association of Surfing Professionals two-wave system, it slightly pales in comparison to Kelly acquiring the title of World Champion in 2008 and 2010 – bringing his collection of World Championships to an astonishing ten titles since first acquiring the title in 1992. Now before the purists enter an uproar, if at this juncture they have not managed to enter to some berserk frenzy at this point (and if so, deepest apologies), the reason it is crucial to observe the 2008 and 2010 wins is because of Slater’s age. We tend to hear the age-old adage that “Age is nothing but a number”, but in Slater’s case there is a stalwart resonance with the cliché without resorting to some type of saccharine string of words that dampen the



By Alex Mendoza

effect of Slater’s influence in the sport. Scan the pages of sports history and there are the definitive icons of each sport, who in some way, shape or form managed to defy the notion of what a person is capable of executing in their respective fields. Kelly Slater is such an individual, displaying a true mastery of his craft by scaling Mother Nature’s towering monoliths of liquid fury, and the methods upon which Slater adopts during each run teeter on the edge of poetic. Picture the endless horizon of the ocean blue before his eyes. The sun comfortably rests at the highest point in the crystal-blue sky. Thousands of fans, journalists and casual onlookers line the perimeter of the scorching beach sands. The entire legacy that has trailed his career places an irrefutable amount of pressure on his shoulders, but his eyes remained transfixed on the ocean. The intense focus implies there is no concentration on what mighat be said, or what has been said – say for this exact sliver in time where he is out there paddling in the water towards the obstacle that has become the primary object to conquer in his life. These monstrous waves have come and gone before, posing as nothing more



than lifeless sporting casualties that have been ousted by his impressive skill, and in some instances he has felt that same sting of defeat. But there’s never been an adherence to focusing on the few instances of failure. Those unrelenting waves only strengthen his resolve, so in this frame of time there is the epiphany of why he competes, as well to thousands of people who observe his path and accomplishments as inspiring.

making their own name in the surfing world. There’s lot of young talent out there and in the next few years these guys are going to make their mark. The learning rate these guys have at their disposal is impressive, so it’s definitely going to add another exciting dynamic to the sport. There’s much to look forward to in the future – both personally and professionally, because you get to stand back and watch it all unfold.”

“I can’t express how grateful I am that whatever I’ve done up until this point has impacted the sport. I know when people hear the whole spiel about people not knowing about their influence seems to come off as slightly arrogant, but I never entered this sport with the idea that it was going to be this revolution of sorts. Anyone we tend to admire, or call the ‘best’, merely starts out doing their thing for the same reason – the love of the sport,” Kelly reflects. “That’s how it’s been for me from Day One, and I think the most important thing for me now – regardless of position – is to keep that mentality.”

The white foam caresses the shore line as the waves begin to pick up speed, one formless body of water lapping on top of another, creating a massive swell that rises from the horizon and jettisons towards Slater, propping himself on the board with the kind of finesse that immediately makes one think, “Hey, I can do that!”

The assortment of voices in the crowd proceed to escalate as the cameras digitally capture each snapshot of history; fragments of time dispersed amidst the onlookers, the journalists and anyone fortunate enough to witness history in the making. Besides, at 39 years old, few people should even contemplate casually surfing, let alone indulging upon the desire to surf the world’s most demanding bodies of water. But the rich history is entirely too much to forsake, and there is evidence in the smile and the form and the skill that for Slater surfing is far more than a sport. It is his life. “A lot has changed in the 21 years I’ve been involved. Back then in the earliest days of surfing, people couldn’t tweak or modify their boards the way they can now,” Kelly notes. “Now we have the technology to give us the edge we need to create the ‘perfect’ board so to speak. But on top of that because of social networking, the evolution of the Internet, You Tube, etc. – it’s aided in the expansion of the sport. Of course word of mouth is still a great commodity, but I think it’s awesome that I can watch my friends do their thing.” “And on top of that it’s been even more rewarding to see newcomers who are



And therein lies the true display of a master – demonstrating such effortlessness in the actions required that the people witnessing the events unfold feel that they, too, can jump on a board and contend against the ocean blue. In the moment we witness Slater at work, however, there is no choice but to stop, admire and be in sheer awe of the sight. The massive wave picks up Slater’s board and he swiftly navigates the wave’s interior, the water threatening to collapse on him at any given moment. He remains focused, though, kneeling downward, impossibly still in a fashion that would make most sculptor’s green with envy. The form – perfect. The movement – seamless and fluid as the colossal wave that Slater slashes through with his board, which serves more as an extension as himself as opposed to a separate inanimate object. And realize the span of time any surfer has to ride these waves are brief, but in those moments captured on celluloid – when time is brought to a lento-esque tempo of motion – it is in these technologically modified moments the skill and prowess becomes apparent. Seconds on the line, but in that frame of time one man can enter the pantheon of legends, and for Slater it is a constant return to form. With fifty-five career victories under his belt, 10 ASP World Championship titles, sponsorships, a video game and a slew of other perks, Slater exhibits absolutely no sign of slowing down. In his wake countless others have followed, but like the Jordan’s and Ruth’s of our time, or those before us, or those who will come long

after us, there are few – if any – equals to rival Slater. Even from his earliest days involved, Slater’s competitive edge illustrated to all others he was not merely settling at honing his skills to become proficient amongst his peers. His ambitious were greater, proving time and time again after each victory run that he was out to become the embodiment of the sport itself. Yet, even with those endless accolades Slater displays a profound sense of humility that easily illustrates his winning attitude. “I think it’s important – especially with something that you love to do – that you surround yourself with good people, and then at the same time be a good person yourself. Obviously as you get older your perspective changes, because when we’re young we possess that drive to be the best, and some people will do anything to get that point. But I’ve learned just doing it for yourself and treating people good around you is more than enough. It’s about feeling good with what your accomplish everyday in your life, regardless of what you’ve involved with. And I can’t say how lucky I am that I get to do this, but it does take hard work. In the end, though, it’s all worth it, and that’s what counts more than anything else. Above wins, losses, or what people say – you work hard for what you want, no one can ever take that from you.”



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watch and


Aaron “Wheelz” Fotheringham is Desined for Greatness


Back in 2006, July 13th proved to be a pivotal date for the Las Vegas native. At just 14, Aaron Fotheringham would land his first ever back flip. Aside from just scratching at his prepubescent years, the accomplishment was all the more jaw dropping, because Wheels, as he is affectionately referred to, can’t walk. Born with Spinal Bifida, Wheelz goes beyond seeing the silver lining with his disability, he openly appreciates it. “It seems weird to people, but if I wasn’t in a wheelchair, I wouldn’t be traveling the world and riding with such an awesome team of guys. I have a good imagination, but I couldn’t have dreamed this.” It was the video of his July 13th feat that would hit the Internet like a tidal wave among even the most jaded of action sports athletes. Who was this kid? Where did he come from? And, how the hell did he do that? Long before the back flip and the whirlwind of press,Aaron was the little brother. Tagging along with his older brother Brian, the skatepark was never far away, and

Words By Ramon Gonzales

other families would have basked in pity parties, the Fotheringhams embraced Aaron’s desire to join in from the jump. “My dad was there on the very first day I got started at the skatepark. He definitely had to talk to my mom about everything, but I think the only real problems I had was with our insurance and the people at the hospital. Dropping into bowls wasn’t something they thought a kid in a wheelchair should be doing.” At just 8 years old, Aaron began was has been a life-altering path the logistics of his insurance coverage being one of his only real worries. Considering he “destroyed” within 9 months, maybe with good reason. From the very beginning, friends, family, and of course a video camera, were always in tow. His collection of videos showcase an endless stream of spills that manage to incite both a cringe and a gaze of utter astonishment. Rails, jumps, handplants, bowls, ramps, and crash, crash, crash – all followed with an



instant, “again”. Unwavering persistence combined with a sincere love for the sport afforded “Wheelz” the skill set to become an innovator. July 13, 2006, marked the very first time anyone in a wheelchair landed a back flip and the community at large definitely took notice. “The producers of Nitro Circus found me through my website. They said Travis (Pastrana) saw my videos.They were like, ‘we have this mega ramp, how do you feel about trying it out?’ I couldn’t stop smiling. It was insane. I had my mom listen to the message.” Among action sports giants, Travis Pastrana has easily transcended the limits of an action sports athlete to become a full-fledged celebrity. Recruiting “Wheelz” to join the Nitro Circus road show would mark the beginning of a professional career that has launched Fotheringham into an all new kind of spotlight. “I was the kid watching all of Travis’ videos and playing with his action figures and now I am sitting at the top of the ramp with him and filming for his show (Thrillbillies). I seriously couldn’t have dreamed all of this.” If you couldn’t tell, the enthusiasm is bonafided. In pursuit of a jam-packed resume of firsts for a wheelchair athlete, Fotheringham has gone on to land the first ever, 180, back flip, double back flip, and most recently, a gnarly front flip off the infamous mega ramp in front of his home crowd at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.



The significance of his accomplishments weigh heavy for the teenager, but not for the reasons you may think. “It really hit me in New Zealand. It was like the planets aligned or something. I landed my double back flip and everyone went nuts. My mom was there and the support was unreal. I really felt it all at once that night.” Far from mounting a high horse, Fotheringham remains genuinely human, while attempting superhuman feats. His immediate response, “I have a good team around me.” While you might expect to hear elaborate tales of adversity, the truth is, from the very beginning Wheelz knew what he wanted and just how to get it. He can only recollect one time where he ever questioned it. “I had just gotten out of recovery from hip surgery. If you have Spinal Bifida, you got bad hips from the start, so recovery took awhile for me. After months in a cast I went out to the park and wiped out on a 10-foot drop. I instantly popped my hip out again. After months in recovery, I thought, “Are you kidding me?!” I got over pretty quick though. I just love the skate park too much. “ The naiveté that comes with being young is always looked at with a negative spin. A conversation with Wheelz, reminds you of just how beautiful it can be. Life is too short to sit still. Aaron Fotheringham is proof.



nitty gritty




freedom For Joe Simko, Imagination Is Everything


Since his younger days as a child – indulging in Saturday morning cartoons and getting lost within his bowl of cereal, Joe Simko has dabbled in just about every realm of the art world; keeping his focus on remaining as unique and original as possible. He has branched off on his own journey and embarked upon a career that has not only led his work into the hands of collectors but has also turned defeat into victory. And just to think that it all began with a little hardcover black sketchbook.

Words by Elysia McMahan

Sitting in front of the television as a child, having those vibrant characters and colors jumping out of the screen and into his imagination, has taken him farther than he might have thought possible at that age. As far back as he could remember, his father would always come home with bags of computer paper for him to draw on and whatever was on the tube he drew (yes, even Disney stuff). The notion of creating the Cereal Killers trading cards wasn’t something he thought of up until a couple of years ago and was “definitely was not a plan



of mine while studying at the School of Visual Arts in New York,” he says with a slight laugh. “I’ve pulled all of my inspiration from the really early years of growing up. Sitting there, staring at the television, and glaring at the cereal boxes. I’ve taken the ideas of the punk rock aspect, rock and roll and horror films and combined them to produce this vision.” Cereal Killers are pretty much exactly what you’d think them to be: cereal-themed Wacky packages with a horror twist to them and the intent of a cute, creepy look and feel. A well-executed work of art – keeping in mind that the last big trading card collection to reach mass circulation was Pokémon. The Cereal Killer cards come in a neat package of three mini boxes which each include eyeball gum; a surprise toy; and special, limited-edition sketch cards, black-light cards, magnets, temporary tattoos, and fun stuff. A set of three boxes at Wax Eye will run you about $25. The nutritional information on the side of the box is accurate due to the fact that bubble gum is included with the cards. These cards blend what we all loved about cards as kids with an entire new modern bend. Each set contains 55 cards total and there is no doubt that once any fan of trading cards gets their hands on these that, just like with every other set, they won’t be satisfied until they find them all. C’mon, with names like Zomb’a Crunch, Frosted Freeks, Eye Pops, and Night of the Krispies Dead – how could you not want to see them all? You always hear stories about how people write down their wish lists, goals and dreams on paper and keep it close at all times in order to manifest their destiny at a quicker pace than usual. This belief held true for Joe. “Speaking about something doesn’t always mean it’s going to be jinxed but then again your words don’t always have to be heard by others for you yourself to believe them and make them come true.” For nearly two years, even before pitching his ideas to Topps, Joe had a



Garbage Pail Kid as a wallpaper on his cell phone. You know, those mid-1980s gross-out phenomenon trading cards designed to parody the Cabbage Patch Kids dolls. This image stuck with him and brought him closer to what it was that he was working towards. Only two weeks after presenting his concept for Cereal Killers trading cards to Topps, they called him back. Topps contacted him to put his own spin on their Wacky Packages “spoof products” and Garbage Pail Kids cards as part of a test to be inducted into the Topps Family. He passed with flying colors, of course, but his Cereal Killers project kept getting delayed until, ultimately, it came time for Simko to take matters into his own hands. As he so gently put it, “You can’t push one thing for so long if it’s not working out. Try something else. You don’t have to completely give up on that idea or only work on that one idea forever – just try something else.” Joe and his wife, June, created their own company, Wax Eye, for their parodies. “We have branded our own name and constantly ensure that we’re not ripping companies off. Spoofs make it a completely different entity. We don’t need anyone’s permission. We market and advertise by our own rules.” Wax Eye’s first product, Cereal Killers, has been the perfect outlet to showcase their company, especially to serious die-hard trading card fans. They are currently looking into working with a couple retail outlets to get their products to the masses. “The plan is to not only put out this one product, but to bring multiple ideas to the table – everything from toys, to a combination of candy and toys. Keeping in mind that the primary focus of all of our ventures is to be art. Working with other artists and having our ideas and visions be brought to life. ” Wax Eye is looking to start making 99 cent to $1.99 packs that will be affordable to those who aren’t collectors.“We want to get these cards out to kids. Hopefully this



idea will be circulating come fall. We’ve already got collectors on top of it, now if only kids can go to a Target store and grab a couple packs cheap! I wanted to generate something that kids could enjoy and connect with other kids. That’s how people come together, by sharing common interests. That’s how I made connections in my youth. Our fingers are crossed.” Aside from recently landing a licensing deal with a t-shirt company (who will be putting out about three of the Cereal Killers designs), another particular plan of theirs is to produce their own cereal with all original concepts and characters. Yes, CEREAL!! Twisted sensibility edible cereal!! When it comes down to it, Joe can be classified as a multi-dimensional artist. Someway or another – the next phase of their company will be coming full throttle with great potential for growth, especially with their second book “Raiders of the Lost Art,” scheduled for release later this year. “We see a point where we intend on bringing in other artists and writers and expanding our company. We want to create a cool company and bring back the fun that seems to be missing.” Imagination is everything. “I remember going on vacation to the shore as a kid with my grandfather and burying all of my toys in the sand, only to dig them all back up, again. One day, my Smurf-sized Mickey Mouse toy got lost. Then my grandfather came over and gave me a huge Mickey Mouse stuffed animal and he told me it magically grew. That moment in time enlightened my mind in regards to believing anything was possible. This cartoon-based character connected with me in some way.” Biggest challenges he’s had to overcome? “The struggle to get through to people when sending out submissions has been the greatest endeavor. Beginning is always harder. I had to break through a wall before getting through to the other side. I also want to take up every job I get, but I had to learn to prioritize.” There’s a difference between being cocky and confident and you don’t have to be the most skilled, representational painter in the world to get noticed. Joe has come a long way in his travels. “Just get out there, follow through and make a name for yourself. Take a risk and gather inspiration from everything in life,” reiterates Joe. That’s exactly what Joe has done and he absolutely does not take anything for granted. At this time, there aren’t any future art shows set to take place on the west coast, but he definitely planning on doing something out here in California, sometime, soon. And so it is, that substance in the art world – still exists. Ceral Killers are exclusively available for purchase through before stores. Check them out!!





nitty gritty



NOthing personal,

it’s just business

Reno 911’s Robert Ben Garant and Thomas Lennon Take You To School


According to the new book, “Writing Movies for Fun and Profit,” the first step in becoming filthy rich by writing hit movies is to move to Hollywood. If you’re already in the area, consider yourself ready for step number two - writing. Authors Robert Ben Garant and Thomas Lennon know a thing or two about writing successful Hollywood films. Their creations have grossed a few dollars shy of $1.5 billion at the box office, making their words of wisdom all that more valid. While “Screenwriting for Dummies,” volumes tend to sugar coat the industry and what it takes to make it as a screenwriter,“Writing Movies,” lets you know that you will be fired, you will be kicked in the balls and you will be pissed on, unless you are on fire, of course. If you can learn to adapt to the sometimes venomous business, you will be on your way to becoming filthy rich. “Both of us moved to Hollywood and started writing movies 11 years ago and we’ve had great experiences and we’ve had terrible experiences and a lot of that happens on the same movie,” explained Garant. “A lot of books make it seem like it’s some holy personal introspective journey of art and craft and it is partially that but it’s also a business and you really kind of need to attack it like a business or you won’t get anywhere.” “You sure better have an artistic temperament and a desire to write constantly, almost like a compulsion, which I think helps a lot,” added Lennon. “We assume everybody who’s picking up our book already has that. Here’s all the other stuff you don’t know. Really specific stuff like how to structure, how to pitch. Seriously, what to wear. We’re not kidding when we talk about this stuff. There’s really only five or six or seven places that could buy your movie. They’re run by a very small, handful of people who are super powerful and writers are absolutely the most dispensable part of the chain.You really need to be on the ball if you want to stay at it. It’s also a lesson for your ego to get used to people throwing away stuff that you’ve worked very hard on, in a millisecond, and walk it off with a smile. That’s the job. We’re not artists. We’re contractors.” Lennon is widely known as the short shorts wearing Lt. Jim Dangle in the “Reno


911!” series while Garant was Junior, the bulletproof vest, black mustache and sunglass-wearing hothead on the show. They were also key members of the cult classic ‘90s show, “The State,” which ran on MTV in its short life. What people may not realize is, they’ve also written (or helped write) quite a few Hollywood films, including the “Night at the Museum,” movies as well as “The Pacifier,” “Taxi,” and “Let’s Go To Prison.” One film that they take partial credit (blame) for is “Herbie Fully Loaded,” with Lindsay Lohan. As it’s explained in the book, it’s the perfect example of what can happen to a movie when it comes to the writing. While Garant and Lennon originally penned the script, a total of 24 writers touched it during the process, muddying it up and causing what Garant calls the worst project they’ve ever been associated with. “We wrote a first draft of that that we fucking loved and when that movie came out, I think with everything we’ve done, that’s the worst,” he said. “It’s generally terrible.” “It’s pretty schlocky,” added Lennon. “But when it came to arbitration to get our names on it, we fought to get our names on it because as much as weirdos on the Internet hate that movie and hate us because we wrote that movie, it made almost $100 million and we get part of that,” said Garant. “If I’m deciding between a down payment on my house or what some dude on the Internet at Starbucks thinks of ‘Herbie Fully Loaded,’ I’m gonna go with the down payment on the house.” It’s also advantageous to have experience acting, says Lennon, who regularly shows up in film and television, most recently an episode of “Memphis Beat.” “Ben and I have an enormous leg up in two ways. One, in that we’re both actors and we have a sense with character and the dialogue,” said Lennon. “You read scripts by people who certainly don’t have backgrounds like we have and they tend to overwrite for characters. Everyone, whether you want to act or not, take an



improvisation class because it will wake up that part of your brain.” “People write these giant monologues and if you watch films, even art house films, but especially studio films, even in courtroom dramas, people don’t have big, long speeches,” added Garant. “When you read a script from someone who hasn’t performed or had their work performed by actors, you can really tell because the dialogue is clunky.” It’s not all stress if you can find a comfort zone that allows you to accept the things you cannot change, according to Garant. “You have to have a certain zen about the stuff you can’t control and in writing that’s about 90 percent of it,” said Garant. “The only thing you can control when you’re writing is the stuff you do when you’re at your computer. It takes a few beatings to realize that nobody else is on your side in Hollywood system. Nobody cares about how good you think the script is. Nobody has any loyalty to you because you’re a great guy. You can’t let critics or bad directors or horrible notes get to you. It’s part of the job.” “It’s one of the trade offs for having one of the greatest jobs in the world,” added Lennon. “We’re down on a lot of the aspects of the system that are a drag, but when you’re working on a script and you finish the script, there’s a beautiful moment where it’s done for you because you finished the script. Then comes the complicated part and the firings and the rewrites and the refirings and the test screenings. I would say, if people don’t feel that giddy feeling when you wanna write stuff … probably skip it. If you do feel it, it’s a very fun job.” All kidding aside, Lennon and Garant hope that their book is used to educate and inspire future writers. According to the duo, many of the “how to” books out there are written by people who haven’t accomplished anything in Hollywood.



“An architect who has drawn a lot of blueprints that haven’t been made into buildings isn’t an architect,” said Lennon. “You have to have had some buildings made before you really know, ‘Will these buildings stand up?’ By the way, some of the buildings are ‘Herbie Fully Loaded.’” “There’s no real good book on the practical’s of screenwriting. There’s a lot of books on theory and a lot of books on cracking the great story but none of the books on screenwriting are written by guys who have actually done it,” said Garant. Like a couple of salesman on late night infomercials, Garant and Lennon are confident in their advice and product and want people to know that, abiding by a few rules of etiquette, will get you far in screenwriting. “I have no show biz history in my family. I didn’t finish school. If I can make it, you can make it,” said Garant. “The way you make it is by working harder than anybody else.That’s the only thing you can control is that you can work harder than the next guy. The writers I know who have made it and who are successful writers are the one’s who aren’t lazy.They’re the ones who write a script and put it away and write another script and put it away and write another script and put it away. The guys I know who haven’t made it, it hasn’t been because they didn’t get a lucky break, it’s because they smoke too much dope and were lazy. I hope that the book is very inspirational. We try to be funny and tell about all the Hollywood horror stories but it’s a great job and you can do it. The only person stopping you from being a screenwriter is you.” “My only short version of it would be, anything is possible, just get over yourself,” added Lennon. “If you wanna write a movie for fun, that’s great, just don’t ask for anyone’s money. Especially not the Mexican mafia.”



nitty gritty



what the fuck is

Punk Rock Bowling Downtown Vegas Got A Little Salty Words by Ramon Gonzales Images by Heath M. Cofran


Memorial Day Weekend in Las Vegas typically conjures images of big fake breasts, pumped muscles, shitty boardshorts, spraytans, and lots of really repetitive thumping from poolside speakers. So it seemed a bit strange upon check-in the Friday of Memorial Day Weekend to see the occasional CRASS t-shirt floating around the casino. For the past 13 years, The Stern Brothers of BYO Records and DIY punk pioneers Youth Brigade have spearheaded an annual retreat to Sin City under the guise of bowling tournament. Well, that’s partially true. ‘Guise’ might not be the best way to describe it – many of the participants in the 3-day tournament

take this shit VERY seriously as the grand prize not only comes with heavy bragging rights, but a considerable cash sum. Just to give you an idea, there is a few year waiting list to land a bowling team. If the punk community at large could ever have an industry specific convention, this would be it. Managers, agents, promoters, artists, and fans alike converge on the bowling lanes of Sam’s Town just outside the Las Vegas Strip to roll bowling balls, swap tour stories, and drink, drink, drink.



For the second consecutive year, the brains behind Punk Rock Bowling have developed the 3-day bender into a fully encompassing music festival that set up shop in the shadows of the Fremont Street Experience. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoon into the late night hours, the main stage line-up was a collection of essentials that have helped dispel the belief that punk is dead. The thousands in attendance for the sold out Saturday night performance from DESCENDENTS know punk is anything but. In fact, Saturday (Aggrolites, Stiff Little Fingers, Dropkick Murphys), Sunday (Bouncing Souls, Me First & The Gimme Gimmes, Descendents), and Monday (Agnostic Front, Leftover Crack, and Cocksparrer) were all sold out. You would’ve had an easier time getting in to see Deadmau5 down the street. In addition to the festival stage, venues stretching across Downtown Las Vegas from The Bunkhouse, Azul, and even the Las Vegas Country Saloon transformed into prime punk rock dives, hosting legends in genre from Swinging Utters to Street Dogs, from ALL to Manic Hispanic. If you got in, you were one of the lucky few. What likely started out as an excuse to plan a group Vegas trip, has become a must attend destination for anyone who fancies themselves a fan. BYO,The Stern Brothers, and the punk community collectively have managed to create a calendar weekend that is much like Coachella is to hipsters – if you ain’t there, you ain’t in. Year 14 should interesting – there was much more to discuss about year 13, but with $4 dollar tall cans of High Life, things were a bit hazy.








T-Pain @ Chateau Nightclub







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p.065 Pure Evolution presents p.067 KROQ’s Weenie Roast 2011 Las Vegas Memorial Day Weekend Takeover

@ Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre

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Los angeles | Skinniescene

Photos Courtesy of Alan Rivera, Andrea Hanna-Price,Tammy Rapp,


07.08 Chain Gang of 1974 @ Echo Plex

Danny Trejo @ Cage vs. Cons

Esai Morales @ Cage vs. Cons

Electric Grime Stealth LB

Too Short @ Cage vs. Cons

She Wants Revenge @ The Roxy

Good Fellas @ Cage vs. Cons

Ring Girls @ Cage vs. Cons

Stealth LB

She Wants Revenge @ The Roxy

Far East Movement

07.01 The Growlers @ Troubadour 07.03 Daryl Hall & John Oates @ Hollywood Bowl 07.07 Foster The People @ El Rey 07.08 Eddie Vedder/Glen Hansard @ The Wiltern 07.13 Widespread Panic @ The Wiltern

07.15 Reverend Horton Heat @ El Rey 07.16 A Flock of Seagulls @ Pershing Square 07.19 Alkaline Trio @ Troubadour 07.21 Ben Folds @ The Wiltern 07.21 Owl City @ Club Nokia 07.22 INXS @ The Wiltern

07.22 Soundgarden/The Mars Volta @ The Forum 07.24 Stevie Wonder/Janelle Monae @ Hollywood Bowl



Las Vegas | Skinniescene

Photos Courtesy of Alan Rivera, Tammy Rapp


06.24-26 ELECTRIC DAISY CARNIVAL @ Las Vegas Speedway

Elvira @ Viva Las Vegas

Yeah! @ Wet Republic

Wet Republic

One Awkward Dude @ Rehab

Phat AZZ @ Wet Republic

Viva Las Vegas

Viva Las Vegas



Viva Las Vegas

07.01 EC Twins @ The Cosmopolitan 07.01 Grace Potter and the Nocturnals @ Sand Bar

07.02 Face to Face @ House of Blues 07.03 Dave Attell @ Pearl Concert Theater 07.04 Steve Aoki @ Xs 07.12 We Are The Union @ The Box Office 07.14 A Loss For Words @ Sanctuary 07.16 Bob Dylan @ Pearl Concert Theater

07.16 Widespread Panic/ Lotus @ The Joint 07.18 Nothington @ Bunkhouse 07.23 The Mars Volta @ The Joint 07.30 Dredg @ The Palms



Las Vegas | Skinniescene

Pure Evolution Productions

Las Vegas Memorial Day Weekend Takeover

It’s an annual pilgrimage that most people look forward to all year long. Southern California’s Pure Evolution Productions made sure launch the 2011 season properly by bringing flocks of partygoers to the pool for their Memorial Day Weekend takeover. Marquee headliners including Morgan Page, Chromeo, and Hyphy Crunk had the babies in bikinis going nuts at the Palms. Capping off the weekend,Yelawolf and Paul Oakenfold turned RAIN Nightclub into a standing room only event for a

Images by Alan Rivera

capacity crowd. Just further up the strip, Friday night featured EC Twins at the super plush LAVO Nightclub. Tao Beach was also infiltrated by the PureEvo crew for a daytime party with Dirty South, only to be sweetened with the thumping sounds of Erick Morillo at Tao Nightclub Sunday night. Stretched across multiple venues, pools, after-hours locales, and some of Las Vegas’ hottest destinations, Pure Evo made sure this Memorial Day was tough to beat. Sucks if you missed it.



Orange county | Skinniescene

Photos Courtesy of Todd Scheuerell,Vincent Malvaez, Erik Faiivae


07.02 HOOTENANNY @ Oak Canyon Ranch Irvine

B Real Celbrates Sullen’s 10th @ AVEC


Rampage Victory Party @ Continental

Getting Off @ Sutra

Hipster Chicks @ Continental Room

Miss Hootenanny Sullen Angel @ Continental Room

Jack Rudy for Sullen @ AVEC

Travis Barker Goes Hard @ The Honda Center

Sullen Art Collective @ AVEC

The Committee @ Heat

07.03 Paul Oakenfold @ Sutra 07.06 Eddie Vedder/Glen Hansard @ Terrace Theater Long Beach 07.06 New Kids On The Block @ Honda Center 07.09 Joe Rogan @ The Improv (Irvine)

07.15 Bob Dylan @ Pacific Amphitheatre 07.16 Neon Trees @ Pacific Amphitheatre 07.20 Jessica Lea Mayfield @ Detroit Bar 07.23 D.I. @ The Juke Joint 07.23 Six Feet Under/Dying Fetus @ City National Grove Of Anaheim

07.24 Liturgy @ Detroit Bar 07.30 Tiger Army @ Pacific Amphitheatre



Orange county | Skinniescene

KROQ’s Weenie Roast 2011

@ verizon wireless amphitheatre

Images by Kevin Baldes



san diego | Skinniescene

Photos Courtesy of Jeremy Wassink @, Bobby Reyes of, Luis Rocha of Dead Robot Photography


07.03 MURS @ The Show Palace (Oceanside)

Animal House @ House of Blues

Animal House @ House of Blues

Animal House @ House of Blues

House of Blues

Intervention @ The Hard Rock


Juvenile @ Fluxx

Juvenile @ Fluxx

Intervention @ The Hard Rock

Intervention @ The Hard Rock

07.05 Eddie Vedder/Glen Hansard @ Copley Symphony Hall 07.06 Foster The People @ House of Blues

07.06 Riverboat Gamblers @ The Casbah 07.09 Metropolis @ Voyeur 07.14 Infected Mushroom @ Fluxx 07.16 Bill Maher @ Humphrey’s Concerts By The Bay

07.17 Exhumed @ The Ruby Room 07.20 Alkaline Trio @ House of Blues 07.23 Pinback @ Practice Field At Qualcomm Stadium 07.30 Slightly Stoopid @ Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre





inland empire | Skinniescene

Photos Courtesy of Erik Faiivae [Five Eye Imagery]


“Rock On Bro!” @ Aloft

YUM @ Fantasy Springs


Big Y Smalls @ Aloft

Fantasy Springs

Rock The Keys

Rock the Keys

LMFAO Party Rock Crew @ Toro


One Clear Winner @ Aloft

07.01 The Vans Warped Tour @ Pomona Fairplex 07.03 White Panda @ The Glasshouse 07.09 Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival @ San Manuel Amphitheatre

07.13 The Bangles @ Stewart Park 07.16 American Idols Live @ Citizens Business Bank Arena 07.23 Smoking Popes @ The Glasshouse 07.23 Owl City/Matt Kearney @ Fox Theater Pomona

07.26 Nekromantix @ VVEC (Victorville) 07.27 Kansas @ Stewart Park 07.31 Norma Jean @ The Glasshouse















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