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Photo Dominic Palarchio Rider Alec Ash, 50-50



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Sydney Lindberg, Kahli Scott, Vaibhav Sutrave, Johnny Hodgson CONTRIBUTORS

Graham Tait, Daniel Muchnik, Dominic Palarchio, Ashley Rosemeyer, Trevor Denman, Brian Twitty REPS

Pete Prudhomme, Chris Gadomski, Doug Setzler, Nick Legere, Dustin Amato, Ryan Brouder

No reproduction of any content in whole or in part is allowed without the expressed written consent of the publisher and artists. Steez is also not responsible for any injuries occurring from stunts performed in past, present or future issues. Always be safe.

© Steez Magazine® LLC 2014 ISSUE 32 JACKET: Cleon Peterson ISSUE 32 COVER: INSA


Georges Dionne, Jerry Bellmore, Snowdogg Carter, Phil Ashworth, Moi Martinez, Jake Sproul

EDITOR’S NOTE Earlier this year I was at a random house party, crazy I know. I went with some friends of friends and had no idea whose house it was or what the owners even looked like. We showed up through the back and there was a keg and plenty of booze. No one seemed to mind so we all began helping ourselves. People were scattered throughout the entire house so only a handful of people even saw us arrive. I casually threw back some beverages over the course of an hour or two, as did everyone else in my group. The party was decent and everyone was having a good time when “the guy” I’m assuming was the owner happened to come into the kitchen and notice most of his booze was half gone. Turns out we were all supposed to pay his friend upon arrival. Long story short, we didn’t have much cash on us so the fun was over... My point is that sometimes you don’t know a good thing till it’s gone. This issue we reflect on Color Magazine and the decade long of incredible skate and lifestyle journalism they brought to us all before hanging the hat in January of this year. Don’t take the free booze for granted folks! Enjoy,



Words and Photos Graham Tait


MUSKA wallride



Charlie Myatt backside tail 18

If you were to walk around Edinburgh for the first time looking for skate spots you'd definitely be disappointed. The old cobbled streets, Victorian houses, and massive castle may have you fooled into thinking there's not much happening, but you're wrong.

You may not be able to skate through the city as easily as you’d like to, but that is what makes Edinburgh exciting. With so many of its skate spots tucked away or hidden from sight in the city, it forces you to get out there and search for spots.

After 25 plus years of campaigning, in 2010 Edinburgh finally got an outdoor, concrete skatepark. This definitely jumpstarted a resurgence of skaters in the capital. I’ve always been more into street skating and shooting on the streets, but having a skatepark has helped the scene 100%. Edinburgh also gets a lot of help from Focus Skate Store. They’ve helped organize countless events over the last 13+ years and continue to support the Scottish skate scene. If you’re in town on a Thursday, definitely head out to the park for Thursday Club. The evening skate is the best one you’ll have!





Camilo Arendondo crook

Harry Lintell backsmith 21


The street skating scene right now is the best it has been in years. With Zander Ritchie filming the Focus video and Uncle Ferg making his ‘Harvest Skate Gang’ edits, there’s always a good crew kicking about. Bristo Square by the university has been the main spot for over 25 years. It’s a great place to meet before hitting up spots new and old around the city.


I think it’s safe to say that every city has its problems with security, cops, and even pedestrians; Edinburgh is no different. Skateboarding is tolerated by the police so they will usually leave you alone if they see you on the streets. During the summer the tourists are crazy, they fill the streets making it almost impossible to skate many of the central spots. Even Bristo Square is off limits during August due to it being a venue for the International Comedy Festival. On the plus side, after skating there is so much to do and see. There are over 4,000 shows in three weeks, pop-up bars and clubs that stay open till 5am and lots of booze! If you get the right weather, Edinburgh is one of the best cities in the world.

Keith Allan kickflip

24 / SEVEN

MALIK Words Brian Twitty

To me, Malik is a silent killer. The dude that shows up at a spot, gives a quick pound and then pounds out trick after trick with rarely a flaw. I’ve been watching Malik skate for longer than we’ve actually known each other. I noticed his effortless looking flow after I came out of seclusion and started hitting Charlotte area parks again about four or so years ago, and I’ve since seen him conquer trick after trick.

Malik is 19 and has been pushing for seven years. He first started skating at Grayson Skate Park in Charlotte, NC and still does when he’s not out getting footage for street edits. With a lot of support from his sponsor, Black Sheep, a sick, local skater-owned and operated shop, Malik and his Foon homies released a damn good edit this year. You can get sneak peeks online, but go cop it and support some sick dudes. This year Malik hit up Damn Am Atlanta and came out with a 21st spot. He’s steady ripping and probably stomping a new trick as you read this. Black Sheep is his biggest support at the moment and DVS throws him kicks, but a board sponsor should scoop him up ASAP. He’s a diverse skater that can rip tranny as well as street. Learning to skate in a park so often seems to translate into a damn smooth street skater and Malik is no exception. Go peep Foon and give him a shout. You can check him on Instagram at @lord_leek.




SHOW & TELL Alexa Brown




Interview AB Photo Michael John Murphy


First off, what exit are you from? I’m from Bergen County, NJ. Exit 165 on the parkway! What’s a model doing with a Biology degree anyway? Hey, not all models are dumb! Besides, I love science, especially biology. Biology is a science where you can actually see your labor and knowledge making a difference. With biology, you will see results everyday and you have to apply your knowledge as well. You are continually learning new things, which I think is fascinating! Are guys intimidated by the fact that you drive a lifted Jeep? I don’t think they are intimidated, I think I just catch them by surprise! Have you ever shot a spitwad at someone? All the time when I was younger! We’re on the dating game, why should I date you? This shouldn’t even be a question! I’m independent, smart, and loyal. I’ll support anything you

do and help motivate you along the way. I’ll back you up in any fight you have even when I know you are completely wrong! I’ll make you want to be a better man. How many Iron Maiden albums do you own? I don’t own any; I’m not really a heavy metal type of girl. I like classic rock to alternative, and folk, from bands such as the Eagles to Red Hot Chili Peppers, Tom Petty to MGMT, Grouplove to Goo Goo Dolls, and Lynyrd Skynyrd! How come we didn’t have models like you in Art School? I can never picture myself in Art School! I’m not that creative and I can’t draw to save my life! Guys always ask if we have the model’s phone number. What’s the best way to get it? Some models love to give their number out! Others don’t. I think it’s best to get to know the model first before getting her phone number. Follow me on instagram @alexxaa_brown and be sure to follow my new and upcoming swimwear line!



Bg Words and Photo Daniel Muchnik

Some days, skating comes easy. More often though, it’s a constant struggle with yourself somewhere among fighting fear, seeking motivation, and finding that perfect moment to fully commit.

That’s how it’s always been for me anyways; I can’t speak for those more gifted than myself. Still, one thing is for certain; when you’re pushing yourself, it’s going to be a fight. We showed up to this east bay spot after a long, and for Tony, a fruitless, day. Knowing it would be his last chance to get a solid clip or photo for the day, he stepped right up. He could have stayed back, contemplating the great influence that Spanish exploration of this area had upon native peoples, or the current unsustainable rate of population growth in the bay area, but with such a perfect spot at arm’s reach he had hardly a choice to make. After hucking half a dozen or so heelflips with the inevitable passerby curiosity and intervention, Tony


stomped one and broke his board. With homies all around, and boards plentiful, Lee Goldberg of Internet and Tosh.O fame volunteered to surrender his ride, and Tony landed this heelflip on the foreign board within just a few tries. As the homies from the bay and valley rushed in for high fives and a footage review, I relished in the moment of shooting a land on film. It has always been a great feeling; not quite the same as landing a trying trick, but great satisfaction nonetheless. The day was officially a success and, a celebratory bro-cam session was quite in order.

Tony Potenti heelflip




Words and Photo Dominic Palarchio


Making this rail skateable turned into a big mission. The night before we went out to trim the bushes and cut the fence posts.

After a trip to Walmart to pick up some Bondo for the crack in the sidewalk, one of the tenants was outside enjoying his Memorial day. We parked around the corner, waited for him to step inside, and mixed the Bondo. Two people snuck up to fill the crack while the rest of us stayed back to avoid attention. Down the street everyone warmed up on a ledge. A stop sign and a few pieces of wood were pieced together for a landing in the dirt road. We had a pretty big group at this spot and three people ended up getting a trick. Deep into the session we got the cops called on us by an angry landlord, so we packed up and left.Â

Alec Ash 50-50



Words and Photo Ashley Rosemeyer

New England winters are long, and bitter cold. Finding motivation to hit street on days when you’re not filming in the park is rare.



Drew Baker is an exception to this. He had picked out a few spots in Burlington we could hit on a Sunday when we were both off from work and had some free time. Baker and some friends set up spots the night before; I gotta say it was super convenient to show up with the place already set to shred. While Baker was getting some test runs in, I spotted a small wide tree that would be perfect to climb for the shot. The tree was all mangled and frozen from the crisp, -10 degree windchill, but I said screw it and climbed up any-

way. I fit my foot snugly between a perfect break in the branches and told Baker it was good to drop. It only took one or two tries for him to land the trick. At the end of the day, whether we’re in the streets or on hill, Baker always manages to throw down and get the best shots.

Drew Baker tailpress





Words and Photo Trevor Denman

With a 4x5 camera and 11 sheets of film, I was eager to create a new photograph. I watched as Nick passed through the frame, upside down, in the ground glass of my camera.

His body defied gravity and danced across the front of the lens. He pushed twice and locked into the ledge as I snapped the shutter: Ten sheets of film for ten back tails. With only one more shot of film, we decided to shoot a switch crook to try something different.

Back in the darkroom, our process was revealed. All of the photos were exposed correctly, yet only one spoke to me. To my surprise, it was the switch crook. The image in the photo had a clear voice; it spoke poetry. It was a moment when Nick was fully engaged in skateboarding, a moment that only a camera could capture. Skateboarding will continue to be a surprise. There was no telling what Nick’s body was going to look like while on the ledge. And there was no telling that a switch crook would be more interesting than a back tail when made into a photograph. The moment skateboarding and photography collaborate together, art is created. Maybe skateboarding will remain something that only skateboarders will truly understand and respect, but the art of skateboarding and photography helps to tell the story of our intertwined existence.

Nick Rudzinski switch crook

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Interview Michael Connolly Photos Jesse Stansfield

Esoteric, undoubtedly one of the most talented and technical hip hop lyricists of all time has been releasing music for almost fifteen years. Coming up in Boston during a time period when NYC ran the East Coast, Eso and his producer cohort 7L used cut throat style and ambition to push their records, eventually sparking the early beginnings of legendary super groups, Army of the Pharaohs and Jedi Mind Tricks. I was fortunate enough to link up with Eso and his son Xavier at Mower’s Barbershop in his hometown of Beverly, MA, coincidentally the birthplace of Steez Magazine. Special thanks to Jay Mower for access to the shop.





YOU DIG IT. What was the hip-hop scene like in Boston during the late ‘90s, early 2000s? I think a lot of hip-hop in Boston that flourished in the late ‘90s was very independently driven, motivated to be heard on college radio and on an underground level. Pressing their own vinyl, being heard with singles and EPs, things like that. I think it was a real lash-back from what was popular and going on in New York back then, which was around the bad boy era, Puff Daddy and all the really glitzy, “jiggy,” music.


It focused on a lot of creativity, there weren’t many rules. You would just put out records and hope the right DJs out there that were supporting authentic hip-hop would pick up on them.

Where and when did you meet 7L? I actually met him at Salem State College. We were both going to school there. I was doing a radio show at Salem State and I would play all types of records from Gang Starr, Organized Confusion...a lot of East Coast hip-hop, and West Coast too. As long as it was lyrical and pushing the boundaries of provocative hip-hop, I would play it on the radio. I would usually get requests for whatever was popular at that time and it got kind of frustrating because there was so much more out there. Then this one kid would call with these off-the-wall requests for Ultramagnetic MCs and things like that, and we just started talking on the phone.

At the end of our radio show I would freestyle on the air. One of the times that he had called, he mentioned he made beats and produced, and I said, “Let me hear some beats.” It turned out that we were both going to school there, but we had no idea. That’s wild. Yeah. There were only a few kids back then that were walking around with their Puma’s and hats on sideways and stuff like that. We just kept missing each other. He had a few guys that he was really working with, and we all became pretty cool together. It eventually grew into me and 7L. I think we were the ones that were most passionate about pushing forward and doing whatever it took to get records out and get the notoriety we valued so much. Fast forward a bit, it’s the summer of 2001 and you and 7L just dropped Soul Purpose. What was your vision at that point? What was the goal for the record, or for your career, moving forward? If I could put myself in my shoes then, it was hard to even fathom that we were actually putting records out and that they’d be listened to and on some level respected by people. I think we were happy to be putting out an album. We didn’t have this grandiose view of where we were going to take it. We just knew that we were-- I guess swinging as hard as we could with what we had at the time. I feel like we could have done an album a lot sooner, we were just so focused on making the perfect 12-inch. Our first 12-inch was two songs, Be Alert and Protocol. We were happy with that and we wanted to follow up with another 12-inch. All of a sudden we had all these songs and it was like, let’s put this on an album. It was what I wanted to be rapping about, and it was the sound he was trying to create, but it was the first time we put a record together. How old were you guys at the time? Let’s see. I think 23 or something like that? My math might be wrong. We were definitely on the younger side of things in terms of where we were in our focus. Then, you couldn’t tell us anything. We were veterans. We knew everything about

hip-hop. We knew the rules. We do this and that and just … In terms of idea generation with you and 7L, is it always a hand-in-hand process, or is it maybe more your vision or vice versa? I think a lot of the songs are inspired by the production. There’s about an even amount of songs where I get certain beats from 7L that call for a certain kind of aggression or introspective approach. A lot of times there would be songs where I would want to tell a certain story or express a certain feeling and then we would search for the beat or create the beat around that. That goes throughout our career. I have a lot of random songs about a lot of random things, and if 7L wasn’t really making a beat, I would have to go and make it myself because I really wanted to get it all out there. In the intro to Soul Purpose, Dwight Spitz calls out the early 2000 freestyle battle/ cypher focus and claims album creation is your sole purpose as artists. Does that still resonate with you today in terms of where hip-hop and the music industry stands in general, with internet culture and mixtapes flooding the market? Is seeing an album through from start to finish still your main goal? Yeah, it is. I definitely think it is. For me it’s not this real task to record a song. It’s something I enjoy doing. At this point I’ve done it so much, it’s kind of like a reflex. I can go in front of a mic and I don’t have to write things down. I’ll have an idea in my head, and a lot of lines and things are just kind of locked back there, and I can just record songs with the flick of a wrist. I could easily flood the market with songs and put out a new freestyle every week or whatever. I think it’s testament to the era that we forged our brand in, so to speak, where that doesn’t really motivate us. I feel like it’s a good approach. It works for some acts but for us, I think if I get on a path to make a certain album, I want to make it



SOME PEOPLE WERE CALLING IT CAREER SUICIDE. WE GOT OFF ON THAT. and put it out and have that be one piece of art; do you know what I mean? Yeah, absolutely. How important is creative control to you? There are certain records where I would drop my guard and realize I’m fine tuning things too much and I’ve got to let things go. There are times where I don’t even want to hear a mix down for a certain record until I’m ready, because once I get in that headspace I’m going to overanalyze it too much which could affect the rest of the record. For example, we have a new Czarface album coming out. Half of it is mixed and I don’t even want to hear it yet because I just don’t even want to be in the headspace of where that goes. If it’s not where it should be, I’m going to lose focus on everything else. Could you talk a little bit about Fly Casual records and the headspace you were in when you started that label? That came about as a result of my level of productivity where I wanted to keep creating and making things, and not fall back for a long time.


It was 2005 or so when it started because my buddy Celph Titled help me build a studio in my house. Then I became this self-sufficient guy who would just wake up, go into the studio, hit record and do my thing. I think that brought about a more free-flowing train of thought. If you listen to Bars of Death or Dangerous Con-

nection, anything like that, a lot of the lyrics I think might have been over-thought. I think I dropped my guard a lot more with my solo stuff. Everything didn’t have to be rigid or threatening or tough. I was able to let some more of the lighthearted humorous side out. That’s easier to do when I’m recording by myself and I’m not in a studio full of people watching me through glass. You know what I mean? Like I’m under a microscope. What have been some of the hardest obstacles to overcome in your career, whether they be project-to-project or in general? Some people look at our music and they respect it because they say we’re not trying to please everyone, but when you listen to our music there is a certain genre it falls in. Then you have in the back of your head that you want to please everyone in that genre. I’ve been told or deduced that I’m kind of a love it or hate it type of rapper. Some people are not into what I do, and there’s some people that really are. Coming to grips with that has been an obstacle. There are some rappers that just, rap, and everyone seems to be on the same page. Do you know what I mean? Is it your goal, to please everybody, or are you just trying to please the people that have shown you love? I feel like right now in our career we’re really trying to please ourselves and feel that type of gratification, and I think we did that with Czarface. I think Czarface was the record we really always wanted to make. I think it had bits and pieces of everything that encompasses us, I guess, if you know what I mean. There’s a little bit of humor. There’s a little bit of the sci-fi comic book angle. There’s some of the hardcore East Coast New York raps with one of our favorite MCs of all time, Inspectah Deck. What does longevity mean to you now in terms of quality and caliber of your music along with staying true to your intentions kind of thing? Longevity, the way that we would look at it back then, I guess me personally and 7L, it’s probably why we’ve been working together for so long. A lot



of groups break up and they have beef and public beefs. We’ve never had any of that. We’ve always been together. I think it’s because we have the same vision and we both live very much in the present, kind of like a Labrador Retriever would, very right now, let’s do it now, this is it. It was always move forward, move forward, move forward. We’ve taken a lot of lumps throughout the way and had to make a lot of sacrifices while recording and doing things, and going away for months at a time throughout our careers. It hasn’t been this cakewalk obviously. If you have a passion about something, I believe that you go and you obtain that by any means and you don’t really let anything stop you. For me it would have been easy once Xavier came into the fold and everything, to do something else where I didn’t have to be away or travel so much. We’ve found ways to get around that, where I can be home more and not on the road as much. We’ve made it work. I’m still making records. How would you explain the difference between a collaboration and a feature, and how important is collaborative work to you in general? The difference between a collaboration and a feature...I guess the words are defined differently by different people. Collaboration is obviously something that’s more organic and focused. I think that’s the way to go about it. If you’re bringing something to the table, if you’re collaborating on an album with an artist, they’re familiar with your catalogue. If you have a conversation about the song, where you want it to go and talk about each others past work and you’re like-minded individuals and things like that, then that’s probably when the records come out to be the most natural sounding.


If you go and grab a feature and it looks like you’re obviously trying to bring in this guy’s market it can come across a little bit unnatural. It leaves some gaping holes in the art that you put out there.

Are you still digging through crates for records? Not as much as I was. I’m more digging through the cartoons we’ll watch. You know what I mean? Certain things from the ‘70s, obscure, bootleg, superhero things that I lived through back then I’ve been reconnected with from my own interests and for his interests, just that connection to those nostalgic things. What was your sampling process like when you and 7L were working on the first few albums? It would vary. 7L would go record shopping in New York or he would actually have a record guy that he knew out in Europe who would send him certain library records that would get sent to television stations back in the ‘70s for background music. That’s where you get the crazy baselines or eerie keys. A lot of the times you would hear records and they would sound like we recorded them to that beat, but we remixed them two or three times, because 7L kept making these beats that were topping the next one. I think that happens more often than people know, because once you laid the vocals you have a chance to tinker with the beat a little bit, drop off the baseline, bring the baseline in, remix the whole song with something else. What were you and 7L working towards when you produced A New Dope? That album had such a unique and progressive sound in terms of your discography up till that point.

...KIND OF LIKE A LABRADOR RETRIEVER WOULD... A New Dope was a very interesting time in our lives. It was probably one of the most fun records we made together in terms of tempos and subject matter. We were kind of sticking our middle fingers up to everybody at that point. This was 2005. Some people were calling it career suicide. We got off on that. We thought it was kind of a fun thing to do, because we felt that we had already done what we wanted to do. I think we’re just so like-minded in where hiphop was and where hip-hop has gone and everywhere in between that we were confident then it was the move to make. A lot of the stuff we would listen to in addition to hip-hop was a lot of ‘80’s electro and house. I think we proved our point with the braggadocios raps, clever wordplay, hardcore drums, things like that. By the time we got to A New Dope, we’d had enough of that at that point. We just flipped it on everyone. That’s one of the only albums him and I can really revisit and listen to. If you dig it, you dig it. If you don’t, that’s all right. This is my art. You said you had an abundance of tracks to choose from for A New Dope. Yeah. Get Dumb and Play Dumb. Same verse? Different production on each track. What was the thought behind that? Very simple. 7L did Play Dumb and I did Get Dumb. It was one of those things where I recorded the vocals and I had the vocals all synced up to Play Dumb and then I remixed it, and I sent it over to 7L. I was like, “Listen to this.” He’s like,

“Damn. That’s dope,” you know. It’s funny you should mention that, because that was always this thing for us, where we were like, “Dude, which one do we use?” You know what I mean? We felt like Play Dumb was maybe a bit more accessible to people. It was a little more playful, whereas Get Dumb was a little darker. We didn’t want to put one out without the other. We just said, who cares? At that point we were willing to put out 12 songs with all the same lyrics. We were on the cover with our shirts off like this. It was a complete 180 from the stuff we were doing. It’s 2014, you’ve recently put out Czarface with Inspectah Deck and you’re set to release Czarface 2 shortly. What is your current vision and what are you looking forward to down the road? We’re getting more into Czarface as like this real entity where we’re working on a comic book and with the last album put out the action figure, and kind of spinning into that realm where maybe Czarface can exist outside of music as this thing that was spawned from music but kind of move over into the comic world. That’s one particular goal of mine. We’re animating a video with the animators now, the Czarface video, and getting the art done for it. These are adventures on our art. These are things that are kind of uncharted territory for us. That’s really where we’re at. As I said, I guess bringing it full circle from what I had said originally, we kind of think like a canine would, where we’re not really always looking ahead, we’re just in the now. That might be to our detriment but I think that’s what our goal now is, what’s right in front of us.

Did you actually walk out of the theatre when Sam died in I Am Legend? I didn’t. It’s funny. Good question. I definitely wanted to, though. I didn’t walk out. That line right there is the type of thing... Pull one line from that album where I was saying something that I don’t think I’d ever say. I didn’t walk out, but it really hit me.. I stayed through the whole thing, but I thought it would sound fly.



Photos and words Brian Twitty




What’s up, George? Hey Brian. How are the States treating you? Good. Really good! Time is moving quickly out here.


I finally had the chance to see the live show of a longtime influence of mine thanks to Twentyseven Folds making a Warp Records showcase part of their Asheville Music Hall visual residency. Nightmares on Wax is celebrating 25 years of music through the release of N.O.W. Is The Time, a compilation of music that highlights a very successful and influential career, and a worldwide tour that has many stops in the US. But no one other than those at the show in “Moog City” aka, Asheville, NC can say that they were at the actual birthday show. July 16, 2014 marked the 25th anniversary (yes, that very day) of the very first N.O.W. release, Dextrous, and not only was I blessed with one of the best shows I’ve ever seen, I also had the opportunity to have a chat with George about everything from drunk break dancing to learning that the best way to reach people is by coming from the heart.

Nice, that must mean you’re having fun! I’m going to jump right into some questions because I know today is your ‘day off.’ Ok mate. Going back to your origins, the Solar City Rockers, do you still break? Only when I’m drunk (laughs). Haha, nice! Probably a lot of stumbling up rock with your lady?! (laughs) You know, the funny thing is when you do a little bit of breaking and you realize ‘shit man, how super fit I used to be!’ Do you know what I mean? You’re like ‘wow man’ and when you try to drop down, your body feels at least 20 pounds heavier. Your wrists and ankles… all of a sudden I’ve got bad ankles and bad wrists.

Yeah, I’m an avid skateboarder and now that I’ve grown older, I have trouble getting my body to work sometimes. Lots of wrist and ankle troubles in skating too. Does dance factor into your creativity? Do you ever specifically have dancing or dancers in mind when you make music? You know, sometimes I do for some songs but it’s only because it sorts itself out. It’s not that I think of it in pre-production. It’s more like I get into a certain groove and drift off and imagine dropping it in a venue or dropping it somewhere. I started making music because I wanted to hear it on the dance floor, you know? Yes, science! Let’s discuss vinyl. Do you remember the first vinyl you ever started collecting? Maybe your first record? I remember the first piece of vinyl I ever bought. I wouldn’t say I was collecting, but I just bought it. It was a 7-inch, a song called Cool Meditation by Third World. I actually own it on 12 inch now which I’m happy about. I bought it I think in 1977 for my 7th birthday, I think. Maybe ’78 for my eighth. If you were to list your top three records, be it for sampling or simply your listening pleasure, what would they be? Marvin Gaye What’s Goin’ On, as an album. Sample wise, I‘d go with Summer in the City, Quincy Jones. And a really important record for me was Planet Rock. I remember you saying that even when you would speed the record up manually, the 1.6 sample time on your [Casio] SK1, you still couldn’t record the Summer in the City sample and you finally got it when you started using the [Akai] S950. Do you still use the S950? I do from time to time… when I want that bit of crispiness in the samples. I mean, it’s a bit of an ornament, but I still use 808’s, drum machines and stuff like that as well. I’ve read you say that you will always use samples.. Yes.

Didn’t you also at some point say that you will always have orchestration in your music? More orchestrated production is where I’m going. I think what I’ve said in past interviews is that-- if you look through my career, there’s always been some smidgeons of that. I feel like on Feelin’ Good, that’s what we were always trying to say without really knowing what we were trying to say. I didn’t see it while I was making the album and didn’t until I experienced the finished product. I thought, this is what I’ve always been trying to say. And now going past that piece of music, where do I go next? I want to go deeper into orchestrated production. I feel like orchestrated production is kind of calling out to me. Yes. I remember reading you say that when recording, some of the musicians in the 52 piece orchestra didn’t even have to hear your music when recording their parts. Is that correct? Yes. These people just come in and do what they do without much guidance. It’s really amazing. It is. When speaking about your music, you




A LOT OF MUSICIANS WILL PROBABLY TELL YOU I’M A PAIN IN THE ASS… really emphasize the feeling in the music. Were they able to capture the feeling in the music without listening to the other parts and recording theirs? And do you ever make adjustments? When it comes to recording, I’m not one that likes to go and sort of fix things. I’m really into a take being a take and a performance being a performance because what you’re doing is trying to catch a moment on record. I’d never go in and try to fix something myself, but sometimes only I can hear what doesn’t feel right and I would rather have them go over it again and again until it’s right. A lot of musicians will probably tell you I’m a pain in the ass about that (laughs). Even if no one else can hear it and only I can hear it. Along with Warp, I was a Ninja Tune fan starting in the early 90’s, another UK label that was producing music similar to what you were doing. Were you influenced by others who were trying to make similar music? When we were first starting out, obviously we were buying a lot of records and things like that but, I wouldn’t say that consciously we were in-

fluenced by other UK labels. We were part of a movement that had no leader. A lot of the DJs and producers from the mid 80’s into the early 90’s; we were all b-boys. We all came from a hip hop background. We all came from electro. We all had that b-boy element, whether you talk to DJ Shadow, to DJ Vadim-- we were all influenced by that yet none of us knew each other or were even aware of each other. Even though there was the hip hop movement which came from the States, because we lived on such a small island and music was never really segregated in England, we would take in music from all different angles and make it our own by cross-pollinating all the different genres of music together. Through the excitement of being able to sample and the excitement of electronic music and never having any boundaries in music, I believe that is why we were able to get started earlier. We never had boundaries. And so, it was more of a movement than noticing what the other person was doing. It was all exciting and new. 57 You have built a recognizable style that seems to stem more from Smoker’s Delight



and not your first drop, Word of Science. But Feelin’ Good has more splashes of that acid sound from Science than most of your other releases. Well the interesting thing is when we made Word of Science, you had two kids who were just turning twenty and were offered a chance to make an album. Obviously, we had been collecting records for ten or more years and had been influenced by our brothers and sisters who were going out to clubs before us, and we went through an entire b-boy movement. So, when we got offered to make an album, we said what we’re going to do is just throw everything at you. I mean everything and anything we were ever into. It was basically an experiment, we called it A Word of Science and we called it The First and Final Chapter. And when we released the album, it went completely over everyone’s head because no one knew what the fuck it was. Now, I have people tell me that album influenced techno, that album influenced downtempo, that album influenced all of these genres. We were really into it but now we look back and realize how experimental it was and that we didn’t really

know what we were doing. We just knew what we felt from all of those influences after all of those years, you know? Yes. And that’s amazing. The statement that you didn’t really know what you were doing but you were basically just doing it. Do you think you’ll ever do something like that again? No. Like I said, it’s the first and final chapter. It cannot be repeated. And we never thought about making albums. The ultimate respect was to have a DJ play your song in a club. That was worth millions. That was worth more than anything. It was the ultimate respect. That was why we made music. We never thought about a career. We made it for the dance floor. To make the dance floor go crazy. That’s all we wanted to do. Keep your eyes and ears alert because George says he already has documented ideas for nine new tracks and N.O.W. has a new album in the works that is to be released in 2015.




Interview AB Portrait Lindsey Byrnes Art Cleon



Cleon Peterson paints people fighting, stabbing, killing, looting, marauding and torturing, but he’s not crazy.


Sure he’s dealt with the institution and battled drug addiction in the past, but he’s not crazy. At a young age he was exposed to a carefree bohemian lifestyle and dropped out of high school at 15, but he’s not crazy. I could go on but you get my point, he’s not crazy, he just likes to paint crazy shit and we like it! At no point in our interview did he ever threaten me with violence or become aggressive. I assure you he’s a good guy who’s gotten his act together over the past decade and learned a great deal from his past tribulations that he’s been able to apply today throughout his artwork. They say to never judge a book by its cover, that’s why we gave Cleon the jacket to this issue and caught up for a feature interview.

First off, Cleon is a badass name. Is that your birth name? What’s the origin of it? Yeah, it’s the name I was given when I was a kid. It wasn’t a family name or anything. It’s a Greek name. I think my parents just liked the sound of it. He was an ancient Greek general. You designed skate decks and created other art before the whole “Brinksman” series. How and when did you get started with the violent acts scenes, and depicting the struggles of the haves and have-nots? I started when I was living in Detroit and going to Cranbrook, which is a grad school there, for design. They taught 2D design, not the traditional modernist approach to design. It’s more of a program that wants the students to approach design in an avant-garde way. A lot of what we’d do there wasn’t even necessarily design: it bordered on art, intermixed with design. The perspective of the school is that those two things are one and the same. At the time, we were reading a lot of stuff, like philosophy. I was reading Foucault and literary

theory and taking some courses on deviancy. I was ruminating on all that stuff within the context of my own history. At first, I made four paintings for this critique. I set them against a forest background, with these figures battling within the forest. I ascribed deviant identities to these characters. I relate it a lot to being an outsider – things like social oppression, victimization, corruption, brutality etc. At that time, it wasn’t as developed. They were just sketches for what I later developed further. That’s where it came up.


In Nature is Submission 72” x 72” OPENING

End of Days, 90” x 90”

It seems like you’re just as interested with the public reaction to your work as the work itself. Is that true, and why? I’m totally interested in the public reaction. I think it’s a mirror on how society views images. I think people project their own lives and their own morals onto art or images around them, in the media; they then have a reaction to that. What interests me about that is it lets me see what’s important to people. What kind of negative backlash have you experienced from your work, if anything? Anything major? Not really. Certain people will not like it, but in truth, that’s positive. I don’t want to make things that everybody likes. I don’t necessarily respect things that everybody likes, or want to be that person. It’s the artist’s job to evoke any kind of an emotional reaction, especially if you’re putting work out there to put social values into perspective. Along those lines, do you find that, whether or not the viewer will admit it, that they’re actually fascinated with the horror and violence in your work? Just like how people are drawn to a bad accident, or a crime scene? Yeah. It’s within all of us; we all have that voyeuristic need. In each of us, we have this dark side that we repress. Imagine hearing people in straightforward language say, “I want to kill that person, act violently, punch that guy.” Nobody really does that. The way that people can use images, stories, paintings or things like this, it almost affirms that their feelings and the things that they repress are real and out there. You try to avoid

picking that thing, because you have guilt about it. A guilty conscience that thinks, “I shouldn’t think violent thoughts,” or, “I shouldn’t think negatively.” It’s a human trait that we all share. You hear some artists say that they never have time to create, yet you work a nine to five, you have children, and you have an amazing and steadily growing personal career on top of this. What’s your schedule like, and how do you make it all happen? I don’t work every day of the week with Shepard [Fairey]. I work basically four days a week, ten o’clock ‘til six o’clock. Everyday, I wake up at four o’clock in the morning to paint, just because that’s when I have my best energy for being creative. There’s nobody that’s calling me; no kids around. Then at nighttime, I hang out with the kids, and on weekends, I hang out with the kids. Basically, I’m militant about my schedule. Somehow I pull it off, I don’t know. I have no idea how to do it. You get sick a lot, that’s the problem. You work with interns too. What’s that experience like? Do they get it, or is it frustrating for you?





Oh man, that’s the worst question to ask me. I don’t really work with a lot of interns. I actually set it up so that I don’t, this is going to sound like I’m extremely selfish, but I don’t really have energy to teach or anything like that. I feel like I’ve only got so much creative energy. Then I only have so much time to be creative, and I want to use all of that to make art. Making is number one for me. A lot of times I don’t feel like you can really, in my situation, delegate drawing or designing. It’s just too difficult. You can be there and mentor people, but just being around, people pick up things, just ‘cause they see your process and are working around you. When it comes down to it, every individual has to really put the time in. I think more than anything, it’s about putting the time and effort in, and having an insane passion to dedicate your life to something. You have a design background. How often is your work mistaken for being vector or digitally designed? I don’t know. It’s one thing to see them on the computer, which kind of flattens everything out, but if you see the paintings in real life, I’ve never


Disappear Into Midnight, 16” x 16” Power, 90” x 90” By The Sword, 8.5” x 12”

had somebody mistake the paintings for being vector or anything. What is your actual process of creating a piece, and what types of materials and paints are you using? I paint on wooden panels. I just use gesso, acrylic paint and spray paint and draw it on there. I’ll sketch, and then I’ll use a projector to get everything correct. I want the paintings to be clean. It’s time-consuming. I can imagine. You’ve done some murals in different areas. Do you find yourself changing the content based on the mural location, or do you just go for whatever you want to do? I try to create an image that’s recognizable, because I’m just starting to hit up different cities and stuff. I want people to be able to say, “Oh, there’s something that Cleon did in that city.” Like Shepard used the Giant face over and over again, and then became recognized for that. Some of my images are less appropriate for big public spaces. I think that I get more backlash on some. I tend to use the fighting guys more. I





Eye For Eye, 8.5” x 12”

posted something on Instagram yesterday, and it’s just totally gone today. Really? Yeah. Just disappeared. No message, no nothing. It’s just erased from fucking history. Is that weird?


I believe it. Your work conveys a Greek or Roman feel and theme, which you’ve said in the past. Have you ever thought of painting on objects like pottery or other Greek and Roman relics to tie in that era. Maybe give a real twist to your viewer? Yeah. I’ve looked at tapestry and my friend Mark does a lot of great paintings on vases and stuff. I steered away from that, just because he does it right now. I’m working right now with Tape Studios on a sculpture. It could go in that direction. I think it’s a good idea, I think it’s cool. I like my details. Making something that’s historic, something that is current but then also points back to the past. I think a lot of what I’m painting about is the same thing that’s been going on forever.

Have you ever been asked to do commissions of non-violent work? Well, one time, my friend wanted me to do a billboard for Clear Channel or something in Los Angeles. I really wanted to do it, because it was getting stuff out there and everything. Then they basically didn’t want to put anything out there that was going to cause any kind of heat in any way. A lot of times when that kind of thing happens, I just say no to the project. It’s important to me to put that out there. Your color palette seems to consist of black, white, red, and sometimes yellow or pink. Is there a specific reason for this pallette, and have you ever used or intend to use other colors with the Brinksman series? Right now, I’m thinking about the next show I’m doing. I haven’t started making it yet but I’m thinking about integrating different colors. I think the reason why I’ve been using the same color system is that it creates this gut reaction – it feels violent. When people get angry, they say, “I see red.” It’s almost like a biological thing that works with that red and black color combination. It just evokes panic, anxiety, violence – that kind of stuff. To me, color is tricky business. If you start adding a lot of color in, or a different color, it tends to feel decorative or too pretty. I don’t want the work to feel like it’s trying to be pleasant on an aesthetic level. Sure. On that same note, you’ve conveyed that you’re not trying to send any messages with your work and that it’s more of an open dialogue. Where do you see that dialogue going? Is there a master plot, or is it still just a day to day process? Will the ancient worlds collide with the contemporary? I think the ancient worlds are already colliding with the contemporary. As dialogue goes, I think it’s great to keep it open. If I’ve got reactions from people, then I can have reactions to them, through the work. It’s hard to tell what’s going to develop out of it. I don’t have a master plan, at least not off the top of my head right now. I read a viewer comment on one of your show reviews where somebody said, “I can also imagine small children being damaged

from this stuff, but children are damaged in real life all the time.” You have children of your own. Do you let them view your work? What are your thoughts on raising kids in today’s age with violent movies, shows and video games? I have children, and of course I was a child once. I feel like children aren’t given the credit they deserve. I think people try to shelter children. People try to pretend that children aren’t aware of things that are going on out in the world. People try to cast children as being unsophisticated. I think children deserve the same respect as adults in a way. I don’t think children should be abused or anything, but I don’t think seeing images and then being able to have conversations about those images is a bad thing. Now that doesn’t mean I think exposing your kids to pornography or things like that is right. When I was a kid, we went to museums. We saw a painting by Leon Golub that had violence in it. We saw Andy Warhol’s electric chairs. We saw all kinds of stuff. For me, it taught me about our culture and how to question things that I didn’t necessarily think were right. Children have the ability to ask a question without filtering it through whatever social rules or moral expectations they think they need to apply to things. Children are way too sheltered, and there’s a real political correctness going through our culture nowadays that isn’t helping anyone in any way. Any thoughts on a collaboration with your brother, Leigh [Ledare]? Yeah, actually, we’ve been talking about doing something together. His aesthetics are so different. It’s interesting because he’s doing work that’s very personal, in terms of photography. We’ve actually talked about it, and we want to do something smart and interesting. We just haven’t done it yet. I’m a big fan of his work, and I think he’s pushing the envelope. I think he’s making stuff that’s challenging. I love work that’s not likable. Apparently, he’s likable. He’s better at ambiguity, where there’s not always right and wrong in there.

Last question. You’ve said in the past, you have no regrets about your path and to follow your bliss. Do you believe in some type of destiny? That’s a Joseph Campbell saying: “Follow your bliss.” I don’t believe in destiny, ‘cause I feel like that would mean there’s something in control of everybody. I feel there’s more of a fluid kind of play in life. I like the way Kurt Vonnegut sees the world instead. There are a lot of things in the world that don’t make sense. That’s what we all do. I think we’re all trying to categorize and make sense of the world all the time. Believing that something out there is in control is the easy way to sidestep personal and collective responsibility. I think there’s some value to believing in God, if it helps you make sense of the world without having to thrust that interpretation into other people’s lives. Whatever works for someone else is fine with me. 67


p) Ashley Rosemeyer


r) Tim Coolidge

t) boneless



p) Daniel Muchnik

r) Tony Potenti 70

t) 360 flip

p) Michael Bundy

r) Josh Eckert

t) nosegrind



p) Rob Collins

72 r) Tony Bruno

t) 50-50

p) Dominic Palarchio

r) Nick Puffer

t) nosepress



p) Marco DelGuidice

r) Alex Cole

t) bs blunt to rail gap



p) Justin Mcleod

r) Mike Steinkamp


t) pivot to fakie

p) Ricky Aponte

r) Julian Lewis

t) back 180



p) Chad Hargrove

r) Tyler Martin

t) nosegrind tailgrab


p) Landan Luna

r) Brandon Picon

t) switch ollie



p) Stephan Jende

r) Jordan Michilot


t) 50-50



p) Daniel Muchnik

r) Adam Emery


t) crook pop-out

p) Rob Collins

r) Roy Syriac

83 t) ollie



Words Taylor Kendall Photo Provided



Measured in liters, how much orange soda do you actually drink a day? Me. One can of organic orange soda from Whole Foods or Trader Joes with zero calories and zero sugar and zero sodium. I live a healthy lifestyle now but my character Kel Kimble, 100 Liters. If you had a nickel for every time you said Nickelodeon in your life, how many nickels do you think you would have?  Over a billion.   Did you ever get up close and personal with the infamous green slime, what did it smell like? Yes, it smelled like apple sauce and brand new action figure toy plastic.

Were you upset when you found out you had died in 2006? Oh that again LOL. Well I did not die, thank God, and why be upset, I’m alive like Johnny 5! Short Circuit movie fans, anyone? Look it up, great movie. I thought it was creepy that someone would stoop that low to start a rumor, but hey there are some weirdos out there. Hiding behind their laptop, being creepy computer key gangsters. I just pray for the haters, and keep it pushing.   Whose world would you rather live in, Clifford or Curious George? Neither. I would go chill with the original Alvin and the Chipmunks. Singing and dancing in a Snuggie with the letter K on it sounds like more fun; Alvin, Simon, Theodore, and cousin Kel. Turn down for what!   Has there ever been a Mystery Men reunion? It should be, let me get Ben Stiller on the phone.   Do you own a Sodastream? No, but I have experienced it at a friend’s house after they forced me to try it because I have a history with soda, which I think we all know about. It is an epic machine.   What’s the first brand of orange soda you ever drank? Crush. Chicago or New York style pizza? Chicago pizza is the best pizza ever and that is a known fact!   If you could dress up for Halloween right now, what would your costume be? I don’t celebrate Halloween but costumes are awesome! Especially the one I am wearing right now.


CRISS Words AB Photo Cirque du Soleil

Did you ever consider working in the family doughnut shop or was it always magic for breakfast? I actually did, my dad owned one when I was a kid. How did you pick up the moniker “Angel” and why not “Criss God” or “Criss Devil”? Don’t I look like one? What’s in my left pocket right now? Not much… Have you ever tried to make David Blaine disappear? Who? Next episode of Believe, who would you rather rip in half, Rosie O’Donnell or Kanye West? No comment…. In your opinion, is Jesus jealous that you were able to walk on water? Mine is just an illusion. If you had kids would you threaten them with the straight jacket trick as punishment? Probably the fishhooks would be more fitting.


Have you ever found yourself clothes shopping with Bam Margera? Didn’t know he shops at Armani… Quick estimate on how many pieces of jewelry you own? Enough to buy your magazine. Hear me out. Thoughts on a Criss Angel action figure doll that randomly dissolves in thin air to teach these kids not to take toys for granted? Let’s do it!


JEFF BRIDGES Please tell me that you actually do love White Russians? Yeah, when I feel like having a dessert I can drink. Have you considered joining the Coast Guard again? No. When you decide to take on a new gig, do you tell your agent “The Dude abides?” No. How much of the clothes in The Big Lebowski were actually yours? Oh, I’d say maybe about 5%. The Jelly’s were mine. Maybe 10%. What are your thoughts on Country Rap? I don’t think I’ve heard any country rap. What is country rap? 88

Do you think the Dos Equis “Most Interesting Man In the World” ripped off your look? No.

Words AB Photo Danny Clinch

When was the last time you ate at White Castle? I don’t think I’ve ever eaten at White Castle. Not that I know of… Real life, best bowling score? Um…can’t remember, man. Have you ever played guitar in the bathroom? Yes. If you could host your own reality TV show, what would it be? I would host a show about people that I find interesting. Guys like Richard Peterson “Big City Dick”. bigcitydick.com What’s the worst thing you’ve ever found in your beard? Probably a booger. God knows what stuff I haven’t found.

Carrabassett Valley Academy W W W. G O C VA . C OM

Rider: Nick Malone Photo: Waylon Wolfe



MIKE MARONNA & DANNY TAMBERELLI Danny: What’s your fastest time up the Aggro Crag? I knew a faster way up to the lighting rigs so I could get to the top faster than anyone. Of course that’s cheating, but hey, I’m chubby. Words AB Photo Provided Mike: What’s your fastest time up the Aggro Crag? Sadly, I have yet to summit the Peak of Aggression. Have you gotten drunk with Marc Summers? He was the designated driver! Did the Pie Pod use whipped cream, Cool Whip or some crazy shit we’ve never heard of? Not milk but a milk-like substance. Rough estimate on many people now have a Petunia tattoo on their forearm? 14 Buttloads (Btld) = ~700,000 weirdos What happened to Clarissa’s alligator, Elvis? Not dead. Lives in Vegas.  Which one of you has the yard gnome from the opening credits to Pete & Pete? We each have custody for a year at a time, then meet to exchange on the same day, in the same place every time. New Jersey. Are you sick of these stupid Nickelodeon questions yet? Good god, no! More people than ever are asking me about the ruddy prostate and general vigor of Sumner Redstone. 


Did you ever have the chance to make out with Alex Mack or did she always morph before it could happen? Always became a puddle; we never actually touched.

Have you gotten drunk with Marc Summers? Never touched the stuff with Marc, but I hope to one day. Did the Pie Pod use whipped cream, Cool Whip or some crazy shit we’ve never heard of? Definitely a Kroger’s knock off brand. Rough estimate on many people now have a Petunia tattoo on their forearm? I have personally seen about a dozen in real life and many more pics that get sent to my Instagram or Twitter. I also personally oversaw a guy get a petunia tattoo at a shop in NYC. I’m sure there are a good amount I haven’t seen. What happened to Clarissa’s alligator, Elvis? She had an alligator? Mike, did we free Elvis at Sea World that one time when we pick pocketed Clarissa? Which one of you has the yard gnome from the opening credits to Pete & Pete? I think that we gave it to Bill Hickey because he really liked it and well, he was fucking Bill Hickey! Did you foresee Nona becoming such a babe? Michelle was in the age range of my little sisters so I always thought of her as a third little sister. She’s a beautiful woman, but I could never call her a babe. Did you ever have the chance to make out with Alex Mack or did she always morph before it could happen? We only got as close as sharing headphones that blasted Moon Ska Records recording artists, Let’s Go Bowling.


GREG Words AB & Michael Connolly Photo @jonluna

Have you ever tried an energy drink? I’ve tried all the different energy drinks but honesty the only one I really like is RockStar and that’s the only one I will drink. The lemonade recovery is the shit! What’s your crossfit schedule look like? When I’m not skating my crossfit schedule is riding my Harley, playing guitar, fishing and camping in the middle of nowhere. Thoughts on the new Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles movie? I haven’t seen the movie yet but as a kid growing up, the Ninja Turtles were the shit. If you won a free flight on Malaysia airlines, would you take it and where would you go? Never heard of the airline but I’d probably go somewhere fun overseas and bring a solid crew of my close friends and have a ton of fun! Why is Street League scared of you? Guess too many 270’s or frontside flips, haha. Hopefully next year I’ll skate it! I’m down for the league! What’s good Rob! Who buys Nyjah’s beer for him? Not me but I’ve been to a few of his crazy-ass parties! Who’s your dream frozen burrito sponsor? I don’t eat frozen food much but if I had a choice I’d probably get down with El Monterey.


Do you make chicks sign waivers before they swim in your pool? Chicks always wanted to get down on the mini ramp and try to skate then skinny dip in the pool. I don’t think we need waivers for that. Do we? Are you secretly Canadian? I’m from the Midwest but close enough to Canada. I’d be down to be Canadian all day! Are bucket hats the new fedoras? I always rocked fedoras for years and now I catch myself repping some buckets from time to time! I’m down for the buckets. Bringing it back to the classics!



Interview Taylor Kendall


photo Jeff Farsai

Slightly Stoopid, is smarter than you think. For twenty years they’ve been mastering their craft, traveling across the globe to pump their sound throughout the land. They’ve been looked at as the Sublime of this new generation, and that is fairly put given where they come from. Mashing reggae, rock, punk, ska, and some of that hip hop groove into one cohesive sound, Slightly Stoopid goes hard, easily. Ryan Moran, fondly referred to as Rymo, longtime drummer of Slightly Stoopid, took time from his sunfilled day to talk about the life of Slightly Stoopid, world-wide liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Do not be fooled, even the happiest, most fun having of people put in some serious, non-stop hard work to earn that opportunity.

Pop Quiz. Who are the band members and what instruments do they play? Well there’s me, Rymo, on the drums. Miles Doughty on lead vocals, lead guitar and bass, along with Kyle McDonald they go back and forth. We have Oguer “OG” Ocon on percussion, harmonica, and vocals. Paul Wolstencroft on keyboard and vocals. Daniel “De La” Cruz on tenor sax and vocals. Andy Geib plays trumpet and trombone. The last and unoffical member and tenor player right now, is Karl Denson. He’s been with us for a couple years. He’s worked with Greyboy Allstars, Lenny Kravitz, he’s played with everyone. He just went to Jazz Fest in New Orleans and seriously,

played with like fifteen different bands. He is really badass. That’s basically the main lineup of the band. What’s been on play in the iPod right now? I’ve been listening to a lot of Fishbone, a lot of Radiohead. There’s a really great punk band from L.A. called Pour Habit, they’re on Fat Wreck Chords. I listen to a lot of NOFX, a lot of punk bands; Pennywise, Bad Religion, Operation Ivy, Rancid. Who got you into music? I have 2 sisters who are both into different kinds of music. They got me started into listening to Zeppelin, Aerosmith, punk rock and stuff as a



kid. I just fell in love with it. Back in the day, when MTV was still playing music videos, I was watching all day and night. That was the fire. That’s how it all really started for me. What kind of drums do you rock out on? I’m endorsed by Pearl Drums, Agop Cymbals, Regal Tip Drumsticks, Evans Drumheads, Porter and Davies stools. What’s your preference on drumheads? Lately I’ve been playing the Ebony model. They’re really dark, they sound good on the toms. For the snare I use the Power Center, and for the kick drum I use the EMAD2. What are some of the more challenging songs to drum on? The punk and ska stuff is really challenging. It’s all challenging in it’s own way. It takes thought, and power.

Why ‘Slightly Stoopid’? The guys were just throwing names around the room. Slightly Stoopid was the one that made everyone laugh so, that was the one they chose back in the day. What are you trying to capture in your music? I guess life, you know? We write the music that we write because of the way we live. Life is probably our biggest influence, it might sound kind of cliché but, it’s true. We want to play music where people can come to the show and not be hung up on any drama. You come to a show to forget life for a little bit, to be entertained. For us, and the music we play, it’s all about that. The lyrics are about going out with your friends, having fun, getting crazy. It’s not super downer, or all about world issues. It’s not that we don’t care, we just don’t sing about that. For us, the music is about lettin’ loose and havin’ some fun.

96 photo Doug Hac

No doubt! Related to that, Leaving on a Jet Plane, you do a really fun cover of that song. Peter Paul and Mary most famously recorded the John Denver track, yet I’d say Slightly Stoopid is in a close second. Whose idea was it to cover that? Miles is a big classic rock fan. Anything that’s considered “classic rock” I’m a huge fan of also but, Miles and Kyle have been playing that song even before I joined the band, over 11 or 12 years ago. It’s just a fun, happy song. People love it, they sing along. We’ll do a call-and-response thing between the band and the crowd; people respond well to it. What role did Bradley Nowell play in Slightly Stoopid’s becoming? Well, the guys met Brad around ‘95. I wasn’t there at the time but I’ve heard the story a million times so I guess I can paraphrase it. Basically, Miles and Kyle went to see Sublime play at a small club in San Diego. They met Brad at the show, they hit it off and the next thing you know they’re all hanging out havin’ some beers and playing acoustic guitar, trading back and forth. Brad was like, ‘wow you guys can play, maybe you could record an album on my new record label called Skunk Records,’ which he had just started with Miguel Happoldt who was producing the early Sublime stuff. Yeah, it happened just like that. Miles and Kyle were hanging out with Brad a ton, they were going to shows, eventually Slightly Stoopid supported Sublime for a couple of shows. There was an early bond. Sadly, Bradley went his way and unfortunately passed away in ‘96, it was a huge loss to the music world. I think maybe it taught Miles and Kyle something in a way too like, have fun and do your thing, but make the right choices. He was a huge influence on the band, can’t say enough good things. Absolutely. Your most recent album release was Top of the World, in 2012. Is there an obvious meaning to that? Not really man, we actually had another title in mind but, at the time of the record pressing we decided it didn’t work. We have an artist Emek, who did the Closer to the Sun record. He was already working on some art for the other title we had chosen. It was this crazy mosquito on top of

WE WRITE THE MUSIC THAT WE WRITE BECAUSE OF THE WAY WE LIVE. the Earth. There were these huge factories destroying the Earth, it was polluted and trashed. Top of the World wasn’t a statement of like, ‘yeah Slightly Stoopid is on the top of the world’. Anyone who knows us knows we’re not cocky like that, we are a working class band. We work our asses off, and I think we are pretty humble guys. It was almost more like irony. Looking at this mosquito, we looked at it in the form of humanity being this big mosquito sucking the ‘blood’ out of the Earth, basically fucking the Earth up, trashing it. The title had this ironic meaning like, yeah you are on top of the world thinking you are dominating it like this mosquito here on top of the Earth, but really you are draining the life from it. We all agreed it was a cool title; it’s thought provoking and worked with the art. So, when we saw the art, that actually influenced us to choose the title. It was already a song title we had, so when we saw the art we were like, wow this song title works with this crazy art that we all really like. You first hit my ears on the east coast in ‘05, then I finally saw you four years later with my eyes in Mansfield, Massachusetts. Take me back, up until then, has it been a steady ride to that success, was there ever any doubt?



Yeah there always is doubt. The band started in ‘94. The guys were doing clubs. You do a club run and 100 people are comin’ to see you play in your hometown and you’re like, ‘cool we’re killin’ it’. So, you go 100 miles up the road and there are four people there. You’re like, ‘oh okay, we gotta start over here’. You start at a small level, and you just realize how much work there is to do. You basically start from zero in each city. You start comin’ around in the summer, again in the winter, maybe do a spring or fall run. You do as much as you can to stay relevant in each city. You start growing this base of people that will come to see you play. Fortunately in the early years, the Skunk thing really helped the band because the people who knew about Skunk knew the style of music it would be. The band has been on the road so consistently for twenty years. It’s never been an overnight thing at all. Only in the last four to five years have we had a little help from radio getting the music out there, which I wanna say has helped propel the band in a certain way or, at least helps that cross promotional touch with the mainstream. It’s never an easy road when you’re going independent, and you’re a touring band. We’re trying to emulate bands like Grateful Dead, or Pink Floyd, even the Rolling Stones are still on the road. Yeah they’re making albums but they’re also doing tours to promote themselves. This band in that way is like a working class band. We’ve always been out on the road working as much as possible; driving, flying, taking boats, trains and everything we can to get to the next city. Twenty years is a long time on the road. Are you still going to a lot of new places? We’re revisiting a lot at this point. We’ve done the small rooms, the medium rooms, we’ve done the larger clubs, and now we’re doing the amphitheaters in each city. We’re doing different stuff at the same time, festival grounds are always changing, and we are playing in some new areas that we haven’t been to before so, things fluctuate in terms of venue. 98

Is there any place like home? Not really. I love coming home to San Diego. There’s no place like home. Dorothy said it right.

Nonetheless I love traveling too, it’s cool to be a stranger in a strange land. Figuring out where your next cup of coffee is, your next shower, where the hotel is, you’re kind of always in this weird flux, it’s exciting. Have you experienced any notable moments of culture shock? Definitely, like, flying over Japan or flying to places in Europe. There is always some culture shock because we are so in and out everywhere, we aren’t really learning the language or anything. We were in Brazil for 3-4 days, and over to Australia for a couple days, then up to Guam and back to California then to Hawaii, then back to California and then over to New York and Europe. It keeps you humble because you never have time to really understand the culture. You do learn a lot about how people are because you don’t judge. The more you travel, the more you realize that humans are all really the same. It doesn’t matter what country you’re in, you’re just another human being that’s taking up space somewhere. You don’t judge because you’re just there to experience that immersion for a few days. You realize it’s a super small world, but at the same time it’s a huge world. Culturally, sometimes it’s better to just be the quiet dude trying to blend in; instead of being like the loud, idiot American, you know what I mean? You’re not trying to make a big scene and be all, “I’m sorry I don’t speak Portuguese but I’m here in Brazil,” you know you don’t want to be that guy. You want to be figuring out respectfully how to order a meal even though you’re only there for a few days, to learn as much of the language as you can to be humble, and not be like, a shit, you know? Traveling keeps you humble for sure. Between tours, what is a day in the life like? All of us are married now with kids. Since we spend so much time together when we’re doing the band thing, everyone really does scatter nowadays. We respect each others space. It’s not that we don’t hangout, we’re still friends and everything like that, but we spend so much time together as a working unit that when we come off the road, everyone kinda does their own thing.


photo Amanda McCarver



photo Stephen Lashbrook What’s in the works? We’ve been working really hard on a bunch of music. We’ve been doing some covers, been doing some punk rock stuff. We have a whole bunch of new original music. We’re looking to release something at the end of this year, and we have a couple of cool projects that we’re collaborating with other artists on. I would just say stay tuned to slightlystoopid.com, at this point we have three or four projects that are kind of on the side burner.


Any superstitions? We always have a drink together you know, nothing crazy. We always try to keep it band-centered right before we go on so that we are all on the same page. There definitely is a bit of a ritual but it isn’t like it’s been made a ritual, we just do it. The way we play is different from the way other bands do it. We try to come with a lot of energy and a lot of power. We try as much as we can before each show to harness that. You are living the dream... What can you say

to those who want to follow in your footsteps? I would say, to bands who are getting started, to just work really hard. So many people want a free fuckin’ handout, and music is not a handout. If your band sucks, no one is going to come see you play, I’m sorry, it’s just true. If you work hard and you get good at your craft, if you’re a guitar player and you learn to play guitar really well, people want to come see you play. I would just say, to any younger musician or younger band, the first thing is, be cool. The second thing; work hard. No one is going to give you this, in music there is no free ride. If people don’t like your music they’re not going to come to your show and you’re not going to make any money, and you’re not going to survive, that is if you’re trying to do this as a profession. If you’re just having fun, do whatever you want. If you want to do this full time and make it your life like we have, it takes a lot of work. I think people believe, especially kids, they think it’s a rap video man. They think there are girls in the hot tub, and you’re poppin’ champagne and just killin’ it everywhere you go. You know what? They’re forgetting one thing, there’s a show to

perform. You have to be on your game for each show. Yeah you can have the champagne and girls in hot tubs, I’m not trying to say you can’t but, what’s more important is you learn to play your instrument so you deliver on the show. When you deliver on the show, then all the other stuff will come. What was it that got you specifically into playing the drums? I don’t know man, it sounds corny but I feel like it chose me. I played a bunch of instruments as a young kid; piano, trumpet, and violin. I enjoyed music from a young age, my parents and sisters listen to a lot of different music. One sister is full hippie, the other one is punk rock, so I got this weird mix of like, Grateful Dead and then Black Flag. Anyway, I was playing these other instruments, then I heard Led Zeppelin and I was like, ‘dude that sounds like so much fun.’ I was watching MTV back in the day when it was still music television. They were showing The Police, Peter Gabriel, Bruce Springsteen, these bands that were just having fun. All the 80’s bands that were on MTV, and I was just watching the Headbangers Ball, all that metal stuff. I was just like, ‘Dude I totally want to do that. I want to play in those bands’. I just fell in love with it. I got really focused at a pretty young age, and started practicing a whole bunch. Through high school I was playing 4-6 hours a day. I was just super driven so that I could play all this different stuff. I wanted to learn how to play like Neil Peart from Rush, he was a huge idol to me, or John Bonham from Led Zeppelin, Steven Adler from Guns N’ Roses, Joey Kramer from Aerosmith, or Josh Freese from A Perfect Circle, Danny Carey from Tool. There’s a long list of guys who were huge influences. I just listened and I was like, ‘I want to do that, I’m going to put the time in.’ It goes full circle back to the question you asked me, what would I tell the kids? Get out and work. Do the work. Play the 5-10-15 dollar gigs, play the talent show at your high school, play through college. Learn how to read, learn how to write, or play in a band that’s working. Get as good as you can at as many facets of music if you want to be in the music industry, it’s like anything.

That makes perfect sense, I agree 100% How have snowboarding and skateboarding been a part of your life? I grew up skateboarding. I got my first skateboard at nine years old and it changed my life. Skateboarding was my outlet. My family was going through some weirdness and I’d just go skating. I didn’t give a shit I was just gonna go skate all day long. For me, skateboarding was like an early form of music, it was an outlet. Skateboarding led to surfing. When I reached 15-16, a couple of my buddies were getting their mom’s mini vans so, we would pile surfboards in and go surf. I fell in love with surfing, it’s been a huge influence. In the earlier years I was snowboarding a few times a year. We’d go to Lake Tahoe because I grew up in Northern California. There were tons of really good resorts but, back then there were only three or four resorts that were open for snowboarding. Everywhere was open for skiing, but snowboarding was this new, weird thing; it was frowned upon in the late 80’s and early 90’s. Thank you for your time Rymo, much love. Any shoutouts? I just want to thank the fans for coming out and supporting shows you know, buying t-shirts or whatever, buying music from the band. I mean we’ve all burned discs off the computer, I’ve done it tons, but, we appreciate the support is really what I want to say to the fans. Without the fans we wouldn’t have the ability to put food on the table for our families. So, first and foremost, a huge thank you to the fans. Thank you to Steez for havin’ me, I appreciate that man, it’s cool.



Interview Michael Connolly 102

Color Magazine Interview AB Photos and Words Sandro Grison



It’s not everyday you read a magazine feature about a competitor magazine. In January 2014, Color founder and Editor-in-Chief, Sandro Grison, announced that he was hanging up Color Magazine after a 10+ year run. We have the utmost respect for anyone in publishing and always looked up to Color, so we thought what better way to pay some respect than to catch up with the man himself and highlight the ups and downs/behind the scenes of the past decade. How and why did you get started with Color Magazine, and magazines in general? In art school I found out how terrible a painter I was and started getting into photography as my pencil drawing progressed more and more toward photorealism. Then, I just stopped drawing altogether because what was I going to do with that? I took photography but wound up failing at that too because my camera broke and I handed in a semester’s assignments on a single roll of film. And although I met the requirement the teacher said she couldn’t logically pass me. I did well in everything else, but I was getting work with skateboarding brands and that’s really what I wanted to do.


I moved to Vancouver with a friend of mine who’s a photographer and started doing mock page layouts of friends with his photos and print ads for the skateboard company I was doing graphics for. I got really pumped on using photography and graphic design, and page design. I was working at a skate shop, and they were doing renovations so I got laid off, and I had a bunch of time on my hands.

I decided it was going to happen and we registered the name in September 2002. I was going around to potential advertisers with a three-page media kit we put together, trying to get people to give us a shot and help support it. One advertiser took a risk on us, it was the company that distributed DC at the time. Once we had them, I think other brands took notice because they didn’t want to miss out on the opportunity. We ended up getting a bunch of brands right off the bat, and it paid for most of the printing, but I was set on producing something of higher quality so after about a year of relentless work my parents agreed to cosign the loan that allowed me to sink into debt. A happy debt! For the first two issues we ended up just giving the magazines back to our advertisers to put in their orders to skate shops. I was stoked just to be reaching as many people as possible and was confident it was going to work out, but if it didn’t I figured I’d have the rest of my life to make up for it. What are some of your favorite times and events that went on during your ten years of running Color? What are some of the places

Keegan Sauder stink bugs a fast plant while Quinn Starr slides a backside tail under him at the Girl x Color ramp at Antisocial Skateboard Shop, Vancouver c.2008 photo Dylan Doubt



that it took you? All over the place. It was mostly L.A., San Diego, New York, outside of Canada, but then all of the major cities within Canada. We got a lot of support from readers outside of Canada though and in 2005 I went to New York City for a release party that we were throwing because we had some New York content in the issue. Going there for the first time, for me, I felt like I had made it somewhere. It had a huge impact on me and I ended up going back as often as I could after that. The release party was sick, we had Patrick O’Dell and Catchdubs (Fool’s Gold) DJing, Harold Hunter was there and everyone else I could have hoped. I was pretty certain this would be our last issue so we called it the “World Tour Of Death” and did a collaboration with WeSC, which was a pretty new brand at the time, to produce a limited run of old concert tour inspired t-shirts that we gave away to the first 100 people that came to the party.


The plan was to have the shirts printed at some place in Long Island, but the garments were delayed coming on a boat from Portugal where WeSC had them made. I was prepared to write it off, but through some connections we got hooked up with this rad girl iO Tillett whose family had this old wallpaper printing operation out of their fifthgeneration brownstone. We worked something out with her to get them done overnight, but when we came in the morning to pick them up the ink

hadn’t fully set yet. I just remember mobbing down Bleeker St. with all these shirts and watching them tumble around in a local laundromat dryer on high heat. Then taking them back to our hostel and making up the gift bags just in time. Then they were gone in like two minutes! I think all my favorite memories involve scrambling. I got to go to Shanghai and all these amazing places and have really cool opportunities. It’s all of the DIY stuff, and just being in the thick of it, that was always really exciting and stands out to me. Other than that, the most valuable thing for me was the opportunity to travel within Canada and have a reason to go to places like Calgary, and Winnipeg, Toronto, and Montreal. A lot of people who live up here, they don’t have a reason to go there. I got to form relationships with the skate communities there and have these really cool experiences within my country. Can you reflect on any mistakes that you made, whether they’re printing mishaps, or lost advertisers, or friendships, or investors etc? It comes down to just being a passionate Italian, so sometimes my emotions get the best of me. With the skateboarding industry facing so many challenges over the last five years, I never took it well when an advertiser would tell me that they had to back out because I really believed Color was best place for them. Other than acting on

This photo gained a lot of significance for me over the years for many reasons. Most notably because it was the day I got to show Mark Gonzales and the Krooked team around Vancouver. You can see Van Wastell’s face (RIP) in the back of Rick McCrank’s bio diesel van being cast with a beam of sunlight. From street skating, to burritos, to Gonz’s inverts in the deep end at Hastings, Rick airing over him… back at the hotel… never once did Mark recognize my existence. And I’m totally okay with that because I probably couldn’t bear it if he would have clowned me. I bought the FTC shirt with the photo Joe Brook shot of Gonz that day and that’s all I need. c.2006 for 4.2 photo Bob Kronbauer

my emotions, the biggest mistake was probably over-spending money because for a long time, my mom was the accountant and I was on a wrecking path. Being a business owner you have to stick to a budget because you know if you don’t there’ll be hell to pay later on. That’s a really easy concept to follow except for when you’re in your chair at 4:00 AM and you’ve been going kind of mad doing layouts and editing and you get the idea for your cover and packaging that really brings the whole issue together. When those times came up, there was no stopping me and the printers loved it because we made these show pieces that they would submit for awards and stuff like that. I remember one issue in particular, we did a gate-fold with an embossing and a die cut, and a spot UV coating, and it was insane. The universe has a funny way of taking care of you sometimes because the printer called me

a month or so after the issue and apologized for a problem that he noticed with the paper being inconsistent in brightness, I was like, “Oh, I hadn’t noticed. It looks great.” He’s like, “Don’t worry, we already went to the supplier and we got a discount on it, so I’m forwarding that discount on to you and you’ll see it on your next bill.” I knew that we put a slight yellow tinge on the background of the paper this issue, it was some effect we were doing, I kind of felt guilty about it. When I saw him next, I remember telling them, “I really don’t think that it was your mistake.” He heard me out but he was like, “No, no, no, trust me. It was a mistake.” I spent twice as much on that issue’s printing as I did on our average printing. You can’t imagine how far into debt that put us, it sunk us. But I think it also kept us going because nobody was doing that and it got people’s attention. It’s always a battle between staying true



to your readers and keeping your sponsors happy. How did you guys keep control of the content and continue to push the envelope with each issue? It came really naturally because we had really awesome brands supporting us. I can’t remember a time when I thought the magazine was being compromised because of any of our sponsors. I never saw them as sponsors either, they paid for the page their ad was on and they were advertisers. There was never a set amount of content we would put in for anybody, we didn’t have agreements like that. They were buying the eyeballs that are looking at Color, not the content. But we worked really hard at supporting those brands that supported us back and I think that really displays photo: JR Jansen some trust there. We would just look at their brand really hard and find interesting angles to work with them and their riders. People would say “You guys have the best ads in your magazine, you guys don’t have any of those shitty companies or whatever.” I thought that was funny because I would never have said no to a brand that wanted to give us money at that time. It worked out really well by separating us from other mags though, we didn’t have Quiksilver and brands like that right off the bat because I don’t think they really got what we were doing.


Do you think that some of the exclusive content, and some of the edgier content and the different printing techniques made a difference to your readers? I hope so. I think that was our competitive advantage, that was what we were offering that others

weren’t. Especially in Canada where there was no need for another skateboard magazine. We had six of them at one time! I definitely wanted to come in and offer something different or not do it at all because I didn’t see much point in being generic. I guess that goes back to the artist in me, because I never touched a pencil again after I started the magazine. I think that it became my creative outlet and I wanted to express some sort of idea about magazines or skateboarding through that medium. I’m 32 now, so I was there for the start of smart phones and the internet being available to everyone. I personally was losing interest when I started, in the magazines that I used to read. I had a clear idea of what Color had to do to keep people’s interest. I felt like quality was the first thing. All the magazines were pretty much the same grade of paper. I tried to break all those rules and do things differently and hoped that it would prevail. But the biggest thing we did differently was tackling lifestyle. Not only as a subject in the magazine, but actually participating in it by putting on art shows, parties, and other events. We had real life relationships with our public and that’s even more important today for any brand or publication. What were some of the pros and cons of being the Editor of Color? The hours working on it was a sacrifice for sure. I literally lived at the office, there were no other options for me. So people would be coming in and out, and I’d usually have a case of beer going to convince myself that I was having fun. I’d trip out sometimes because I was super into skating and it’s all I wanted to do, but I feel like a couple summers went by where I didn’t see a beach either. I didn’t leave my studio! Now I know more people that have to make those sacrifices for their careers or whatever, but back then I was young and nobody around me really understood. As Editor, the big thing that I remember learning

was never to show someone their interview or story before it’s published unless it’s absolutely necessary. Edits could go on for weeks once you bring in someone’s fragile ego. But I get it, they have careers ahead of them. We didn’t want to print something that might hurt their career in any way, but at the same time, our business is essentially selling magazines. We didn’t want to print a vanilla story because of someone’s feelings, we wanted to entertain people, make them laugh, and inspire! I’m still moved when I think about some of the positive reactions we got though. Some people felt like we were just writing to them and it was made clear to me on more than one occasion. That was what made it worth it. I would go back to my dungeon and work on it again for another 16 hours, it’s fuel and it keeps you going. That’s sort of why I wanted to start Color, because I felt like magazines should do that. Color was at the forefront of offering skate and lifestyle under the same cover. What did people expect from you guys? What did you guys hope to contribute by offering lifestyle? It goes back to that cheesy saying: “skateboarding is an art”, or “a way of life” and I totally subscribe to that. Half the time when I go out to skate, especially these days, there’s just as much beer drinking going down as skateboarding and that’s a lifestyle. Shooting the shit with your friends and going to a spot because it’s near the beach and you get to people watch and kick it, rather than the spot that’s probably more fun to skate. I wanted more skaters to reach outside their comfort zones and discover everything that skateboarding can provide, all the things in the fringes. So with Color we used skateboarding

as that bridge; used skaters as the models in fashion or featured a conceptual artist that happens to be a skater. That was how we reached those readers, “Check out this art, you’ve probably never seen anything like this before but this guy’s a skater and he’s from here…” That offered some context and offered some common ground to help people understand something that maybe they’ve never considered before. Would you have done anything differently, any regrets? Whether it was in the very beginning or near the end? There are things I did and things I said in the mag that are pretty fucking embarrassing, but I have no regrets at all. That’s just who I was at the time. Absolutely not, I don’t have any regrets, I wouldn’t do anything different. We were still very fortunate to be able to do what we did for as long as we did and I’m proud of what we made. Even now when people come up to me and they’re like, “I heard about the mag. I’m so sorry.” I’m just like, “Don’t be.” I probably had 100 people come up to me and say that and maybe one or two of them were like “Congratulations, I heard you’re done with Color. Congratulations.” I’m like “Thank you, that’s awesome, that’s great that you had that view on it, because that’s exactly how I feel.” We did what we set out to do and we had a really good run. Over the course of the ten years, you saw all this stuff come about; YouTube, Facebook,



social media, film cameras went to digital, we saw the recession and a ton of shit in the skate market. How did those changes affect Color? Color didn’t change at all. It just kind of grew up along with me as a person. It still had the same mandate, same departments, the same regular columns and same building, as when I started. But it was very personal for me. For example, I was never into video games, so we never had video game reviews and stuff like that. At the same time, we always kept book reviews, video reviews, tons of album reviews when a lot of magazines were cutting those things out. I think that’s one of the unique things. We got a lot better at it but we came up with the basic structure and stuck with it right to the end, it was consistent in that way. On the technology side, it’s just Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and stuff, are in a totally separate category than magazines. All those things are just distractions to us. Skateboarding is run by skateboarders who have little to no business education or experience so that’s who’s making the marketing decisions in most cases.

I hope it’s always like that. I love it. It just gets frustrating sometimes. In other cases, it’s corporate bullshit, but we won’t get into that either. Original content is really hard to find, and you guys always went above and beyond in coming up with amazing stories and interviews, especially given how limited your market was. How difficult was that process, and did you have a lot of unused content? Did you guys just kind of roll with the punches from issue to issue? Thank you for saying that—we definitely did not take the easy road when coming up with new content. And it was always issue-to-issue. We had maybe one year or two years where I would try to get ahead a little bit. Every single issue was past deadline. I feel like we were always waiting for a cover shot. And I wouldn’t write the intro to the issue until the night I was sending it to the printer. We didn’t have a lot of unused content. Just a lot of really long interviews that we’d have to cut down significantly, and that was always hard, but I could probably count on one hand the

Wade Fyfe, backside 180 nose grind c.2008, in front of Railtown Studios in East Vancouver, B.C., home of Color Magazine for over a decade. photo Kyle Shura

number of features or interviews that we did or planned to do but we never ran. We did try to reinvent the wheel a little bit more than we probably needed to. We were always doing things the hard way, but that’s what made Color what it was, mistakes and all. Were there any surprise relationships that you forged through Color? There’s so many. In fact, I stopped getting surprised after a while. Not just the magazine, but skating in general just brings people together. One year after Slam City Jam, Maestro Fresh Wes asked to crash on my couch. I got to bring my wife and her sister backstage to a Band of Horses concert after skating with the drummer. I didn’t even really know their band until Guy Mariano used them in the Lakai video. One time we had designer David Carson over for a barbecue. It was right after he did an artist talk and I called a whole bunch of my designer friends. I was just like, “Dude, I have David Carson on our roof right now. You should come over and can you pick him up a steak or something?” Because we didn’t

have much food. We were just a bunch of twentysomethings, but Carson seemed to have been having a nice time. At some point in the evening I leaned to my friend and thanked him for picking up some supplies and he just shrugged, “Don’t worry about it, I just put it down my pants”. He jacked it. I was like, “Oh my God”, and then looked over and Carson was eating it. [laughs] More recently, I had heard Leo Romero was playing music in this band and I really wanted to bring them to Vancouver and have them play at this weekly pub night I do. We ended up getting them up here and we did a little tour around the west coast of British Columbia, we did five shows in a week. That was really cool, because I had never been on the road with a band before and never met these guys before at all. I just drove and we had an awesome time and formed really great friendships with all the guys in the band. It was kind of trippy because you forget Leo Romero is a ripping skater [Thrasher’s Skater of the Year 2010]. The things he’s done on a board and still does today is incredible. It seemed like it was the last thing on his mind when we did that tour. We



didn’t skate, he was just a dude and now we’re all homies. That was cool, stuff like that. Can you tell me why print was important to you, and is it still valuable to you? It’s the tangibility of it, because you hold it, and you smell it, and the quality of it. You can look at it up close, or as far away as you want. You can hang it on your wall. It’s much more pleasurable to look at, there’s no glare. Most people work on computers all day. The last thing I want to do when I get home is look at another screen. It’s nice to flip through a magazine, there’s something about it. Plus, I’d like to believe that a lot more care goes into choosing and presenting content when there’s printing and distribution costs at stake. That’s something that doesn’t enter the head of a digital editor. From a marketing perspective, just the value of that permanence, and expression in that. The experience someone would have with the product that maybe you have an advertisement in or whatever. And they might share it too. It’s just so much greater than a number or a unit in your database of impressions. It’s sad how obsessed we’ve all become in being able to track data. Decisions aren’t made based on feeling anymore.


Can you talk about what’s next for you, if you want? Maybe there’s a chance you revive Color, or do something else in print down the road? Right now, I just finished filming a pilot for a pro-

duction we’re calling Atlas Electric and it’s a tenepisode web series which we’ll also package as a feature film starring Rick McCrank and directed by Corey Adams, who did Machotaildrop a few years ago for Fuel TV. I’m lucky to have been able to work on it and co-producing, creating it with my friend Conor Holler. It seems surreal to be making a feature film, but also at the same time, it’s exactly what I’ve been doing my entire career; producing around skateboard culture, repackaging and showing it in a unique way. There’s also an interactive side to that project which comes in the form of a mobile app. As for the future of Color? I had to stop doing it in order to work on this new project and just gain some perspective. I have no definitive plans, but I’m not closing the book on it yet. One last question. Is there anyone you want to thank, or anything you want people to remember about Color? Skate, or do-it-yourself. Which means, skate or do something to participate. Do something that stokes you out and don’t let anyone tell you you can’t. That was our mantra, man. Skate or D.I.Y. And no. Nobody I want to thank because in Color we said that that stuff should be done on your own time. Let me say this actually. One person, among many probably, that got left out when we published a big list of names on our back cover in Volume 10, was my beautiful wife Julianna and that was a big mistake. There’s no way I could do anything in my life without her. How she’s helped me out throughout the years has been unprecedented. And while I’m at it, thank you Andrew and Steez for keeping up the good fight. Magazines like yours create heroes.


Interview Sydney Lindberg Photos Provided By Artist

The War On Drugs The mesmerizing, ambient sounds of The War On Drugs’ earlier albums have been swept away to make room for an album that can easily be defined in one word: classic. The Philadelphia natives have created a timeless record reminiscent of the records your dad used to play back in the day, and a record you’ll be able to play twenty years from now. The melodies, movements and lyrics reflect the dark and lonely two years lead singer, Adam Granduciel spent writing Lost in the Dream. For some reason, artists tend to create really rad shit when they’re down and out and Lost in the Dream is no exception. Here’s what bassist David Hartley had to say about the new album, life on the road and everything in between. Interview Michael Connolly 114




IN FACT, Sorry, the reason I had to call you back is I had to get a coffee. I literally don’t know if I could form a sentence without it. I had to secure the caffeine. Where are you right now? I’m in Philadelphia, where we live, but we’re flying out later today to Portugal for some shows. Are you doing festivals or club shows overseas? About half and half actually. It’s weird because it’s a tour, but half of it is festivals. So, sometimes you play at noon, sometimes you play at one, sometimes you play at midnight. It’s all over the place. We’re also playing some club shows in Italy, so it’s not entirely festivals. It’s a nice little mix. Have you been overseas before? Yeah, quite a bit actually. I’ve been with the band for 8 or 9 years, and we went over in the early days even though it was small, shoestring kind of tours. I can’t even count the amount of times we have gone at this rate. Let’s just say my frequent flyer miles are robust. It must be pretty cool getting to see the world? Yeah, I’m trying to sound thankful that we get to do it, but also explain that it’s not awesome all the time. In fact, sometimes it’s not awesome at all. How so? We call it the hellish reality; shorthand for no sleeping and intense routing. The last tour we did, we had 23 shows in 24 days, and the last four shows were in Germany, Spain, Barcelona and Philadelphia. In four days! The only way that’s possible is if you play a show, go to the airport and fly out to the next show. Luckily, that tour ended in Philly so we all got to sleep in our own beds that night. It looks cool on Instagram because you get to be like, “Oh, we’re in Dublin, and now we’re in

SOMETIMES Barcelona, and, oh we’re over here.” You’re really just in security at the airport. So, you’ve been with the War On Drugs for 8 or 9 years? Yeah, basically since day one. Actually, since day two. We joke about that because I joined on the second gig. Adam started the band, and there’s been a lot of people who have come and gone since then. We’ve had a lot of different drummers. Kurt Vile was in the band, famously. Basically, the band started with Kurt and Adam, and I came on their scene right away. Adam and I are really close. Robbie, who’s been in the band for a long time is really close. And our drummer Charlie, who’s kind of new, we’re tight too. I don’t think we’ve ever had, like, a big blowup or anything, which is good. I’ve seen bands implode when they’re too close. You guys definitely seem to have a nice vibe going on, and your music reflects that. How would you describe The War On Drugs’ sound? We’re classic sounding. I mean classic as in classic rock, but also in a sense of trying to make the music sound timeless without really




getting caught up in what’s popular at the moment. We want to make music you can listen to twenty years from now. We have a lot of influences from classic rock radio, the stuff we grew up listening to on our dad’s record player, but we also drop in experimental elements. People kind of lock into that.

Yeah, Nightlands. As of right now, it’s a little bit on the shelf because I’m completely booked this whole year. I’m working on my third album on the label Secretly Canadian. It’s completely different than The Drugs. We have a different vibe, which is probably subconscious and also deliberate. I don’t want to be just a subset of something else. I want to have something totally separate.

If you imitate a sound right on the nose, that’s lame. Sometimes, when I hear a band that hits right on the dot, it makes me feel icky. It’s like, “Oh yeah, I liked this band the first time I heard them... when they were called the Grateful Dead.” But, I don’t think that’s what we do. We’ve had times when we were playing a song and we’d back it up because it started to sound a little too much like Teddy.

It’s great because I come home from tour and hang out with people I love, but it’s also nice to come home from tour and work on recording some stuff. It’s a nice Yin and Yang. If you tour too much you start to miss the creative, but if you record too much you miss the energy of the shows. Sometimes that balance is perfect, and sometimes the scales tip.

You’ve also been working on a solo project, right?

Who does most of the writing in The War On Drugs?


This latest album, Lost in the Dream, was actually the first album where Adam wrote everything. I mean, the songs have always been his for sure, he’s the songwriter in the band but, it’s cool. It’s sort of that age old method where he’ll bring the song in and the band just jams on it for a long time in the studio. The methodology that’s sort of floating out there about him being a mess and making this record in isolation is pretty true. I think we were all kind of there, but he was sort of falling apart emotionally and just writing these beautiful songs. We spent a lot of time trying to record them the right way. At the time, I was sort of disappointed because I wanted to be a little more involved with the songwriting and the shaping of the record as I had been with some of the past stuff. But when it was done, I saw the whole picture and I saw that he had to make this statement. The record is a clas-

sic. It’s his vision for sure and we’re characters in the painting, so to speak. Do you have a favorite festival? There’s one outside of Portland called Pickathon that’s really small. It’s a personal favorite because it’s really intimate. On the other hand, we played Glastonbury recently which is like the biggest festival in the world. Did you get wet? Yeah, it was raining. It was muddy. We were on the main stage playing to 10,000 people. It was the biggest audience we’ve ever played to. It was crazy and at the same time it was strange. You don’t get to meet anybody and you feel like you’re in this pop-up city apparatus. 119 But, Pickathon is awesome. It’s like 3-4,000 people. They always have a great lineup and


IT’S REALLY INTOXICATING TO LOOK OUT AND SEE A BILLION FACES LOOKING BACK AT ME ENJOYING WHAT I DO. it’s in the woods. It’s a little more do-able for the bands. We’ve also played Hideout festival in Chicago, that’s really fun. We’ve also done some festivals in North Carolina that are kind of smaller. You know, we’ve played Lollapalooza, we’ve played Bonnaroo. Those are cool but it’s like, everything is kind of ratched up. It can be really fun, but it’s also just a relief when it’s over.


I remember my first big concert I ever went to was Soundgarden in 1994, or 1993 when I was in ninth grade or something. My buddies and I somehow talked our parents into dropping us off at this big concert in D.C. and I just remember everything about that was like, dangerous. You know what I mean? People were drinking, and I could smoke a joint and at the same time, it was kind of intoxicating. I loved it. I remember when I was a kid and I wanted to get beat up in the

pit, get drunk. Now I’m like, where’s my dressing room? I would like some Kombucha. I’m just completely on the other side of the glass. It’s my job and I love it and I want to have fun, but most of the time I just want to be healthy and rested and able to perform well. I don’t have any interest in being pushed around in a sweaty, pulsating, mob of people. It’s just a completely different mindset. Having said that, it’s really intoxicating to look out and see a billion faces looking back at me enjoying what I do. Do you still go to shows other than your own? Occasionally. I go see my friends’ bands when they come through to Philly and once in a while I’ll go see a big show because it’s fun to have that experience. I don’t have to love a band for that to happen. In fact, when we went to Glastonbury, we watched Arcade Fire which is a band I didn’t really know anything about, although I’ve heard they’re really popular. It was intense to watch them play because they were entertaining 10,000 people pretty effectively. My mind is corrupted. I’m always looking through a certain lens-- wondering how are they doing the lights like this, or we should find out what this sound guy is doing. So, what’s on your iPod right now? Funny, I’ve been listening a lot to this New Age compilation that just came out. It’s called I am the Center and it’s the history of New Age music. You think of background music that you get a massage to, but it’s gorgeous, and I listen to it all the time. In the mornings, I wake up, I hit play and it fills my house. Light in the Attic put it out. I’ve also been listening to a lot of old stuff - J.J. Cale, some Dylan, you know, the classics. It’s cool too, we always discover neat little corners of it. In fact, you could spend your whole life working through Dylan’s catalogue. Rad. I could listen to Dylan any day. I have one more question for you. Have to ask - do you watch It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia? I don’t. It’s ironic. Maybe I’ll download it for my flight today. You should, it’s hilarious. Thanks for your wisdom Dave, hope to catch you at a show soon!



#929Copley MYRADIO929.COM


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Interview Sydney Lindberg Photo Courtesy of INSA




NSA, one of the UK’s most respected, and well-thought of graffiti artists, has taken street art to the next level. That’s right, INSA has created the world’s largest GIF. You know, one of those animated cartoons that you run into online. He collaborated with MADSTEEZ, an artist and designer out of California, to create the world’s largest “GIF-ITI” on the side of a building in Taipei for Pow! Wow! Taiwan 2014. He also turned the Bonnaroo fountain into a piece of GIFITI a few weeks back. Just sayin’, his work is dope.

Outside of his large-scale street animations, INSA’s art draws attention to the commodification of women through color and line. Beautiful women and sexualised imagery fill paintings, murals, installations and photographs; just see for yourself. He plays with black and white lines to distort spaces as well as draw the viewer into fantasies and fetishes. He questions contemporary consumer culture and exposes our materialistic aspiration. His work ranges from commissions by Nike and Kid Robot to his own line of INSA-heels and INSA-bikinis. Believe it or not, girls like his work more than the guys do. I’m guessing because it’s hot, sexy and all about popular culture. Right, ladies? What are you working on right now? Right now I’m working on some designs for a huge wall I will be painting in Taipei, Taiwan next month, while inflating balloons for my daughter’s fourth birthday tomorrow! 124

You have a signature graffiti style -- did you grow up painting the streets? How has your style and art practice evolved over the years?

Yeah, I grew up doing graffiti. I started when I was about thirteen. When I was a teenager, graffiti was all about tagging and doing trackside and stuff. My style and practice have evolved naturally as I evolved as a person. When I was an angry teenager that form of expression was ideal- but after one too many fights and a short stint in prison, I wanted to do more than just graffiti. I had always considered myself an artist, not a vandal, but I wasn’t focused on that as a professional outlet when I was younger. How would you describe your work? That’s hard to define as I like to try lots of different things. I definitely think all the things I do have a kind of conceptual or aesthetic coherence, but at the same time I keep a lot of different things going. Like painting a Bentley in the classic heel pattern (which I’m working on at the moment) is very different from an animated painting on an African mud hut, but they do both come out of INSALAND.





S align with the way we desire these body parts. I see these ‘objects’ I paint as being a discussion of our obsession with material gain, rather than reflecting a personal sexual fantasy.


Where do you see the commodification of women in everyday life? I think the female body has been commodified in every aspect of modern mass media, from music videos to adverts to magazines. I think our relationship with this glossy image has even transcended our real relationships with the actual women in our everyday lives, the image sovereign. Does your work get a different response from men and women? How about curators and galleries -- have you ever had any backlash towards your subject choice and imagery? People are often surprised by the fact I probably have more female ‘fans’ or followers of my work than male- but then I try to make my work inclusive. I think women have just as much of a disembodied relationship with this kind of female imagery as men do. I think my work gets taken the wrong way a lot of the time, but I’m used to that. If people like or don’t like my works without fully understanding what I might be thinking about, that’s cool - I’d rather that than have people think my work was preachy and basic in statement.

Tell us about your fascination with the female form, especially in regards to what you’re trying to depict in your art through her form. I obviously use the female form a lot in my workfrom the legs and heels in my pattern work to the ‘big butts’ I’ve painted on canvas. I’m very interested in the relationship we have with form, in the way we objectify body parts to an extreme, to the extent they become commodities like any other object. In a way, it reduces women’s bodies to the plane of consumerism. Our desires for things

Even though you got your start in graffiti, many of your works are three dimensional -either painted rooms, objects such as high heels, etc. Why? I don’t know, why not? Just ‘cause I did a lot of graffiti as a kid doesn’t mean I can’t expand my practice. That’s mainly why I deliberately moved away from graffiti. Graffiti has a very narrow minded attitude to what you can and can’t do. I want to try everything - have a go, you know? I guess I am also drawn to making work that is very limited edition or not possible to buy, or even encounter in the real world, like the GIFITI work.




A few of your recent projects include heels, bikes and GIFs -- all elements of modern day society. What does each represent to you? The GIFs are a slightly different thing, but the heels and the bikes represent the commodity. They are symbols of our consumption and our conviction that they are our choice. Heels in particular have so many connotations; they’re sexualised objects, fetishistic, symbols of female freedom and yet also male dominance -- they’re loaded with meaning for me. What do you like to do in your free time besides art? Cook, drink, raise my children.... Are you a sneaker-head? How has that played into the development of your art? I was once a sneaker-head back before the rare were hyped and the queues (lines) formed! I had a whole series of works called Sneaker Fetish which tied into those themes of commodity, fetish and marketing. Capitalism as a lifestyle choice. Do you find it ironic that your art critiques consumer culture, yet you have worked with many brands like Kid Robot and Nike, in addition to your own product lines of INSAHEELS and INSA-BIKINIS? I would say less ironic and more relevant. My critique or questioning of consumer culture is one that includes myself and my role as an artist in the world. I am not critiquing the world as an outsider looking in, but as someone who struggles with their own relationship with capitalism and consumerism. It also has to do with the battle I fight between being an artist and a designer. As an artist, I think we need to leave material possessions aside, but as a designer, I love to make and produce things. My compromise is to only make very small amounts of the products that I produce so, hopefully I’m not adding to a landfill somewhere, while still creating a more interesting way of owning my art than framing a print.

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Was your collaboration with Ruth Shaw on INSA HEELS successful? It was successful in the sense that I wanted to experience what it was like to own and run my own company, and go through every stage of manufacturing, yes. I started INSA HEELS at a time when I was having numerous sneaker collab deals offered. I thought about it and came to the conclusion that if I wanted a shoe on the market to represent my artwork then that shoe should be a heel. Rather than hand over the artwork to a major company, I figured I could do it all myself. It was an experiment in independence. We sold all the short run of heels we made, and I learned a lot in the process.




Interview Johnny Hodgson Photos FIFOU

CK Chuck Inglish is one half of the group The Cool Kids. He took a minute off from touring North America with fellow rapper Asher Roth to do an interview.




What’s happening? I’m riding from Vancouver to Seattle in a minivan on this tour with Asher. He’s actually on a phone interview right now, too. This shit’s kind of funny. How are you enjoying your time on the road with Asher? It’s cool, man. We’re like family. It’s never anything but great stories and cool times. We started off in DC, just made a trip through the Americas. We’re just now pulling into Seattle. We’ve been on the road for almost two weeks. He tweeted that you put on Capone-N-Noreaga’s The War Report in recognition of its release date in ‘97. What meaning does that album have to you? A really cool one. It was like ‘97, my uncle, my mother’s brother, he’s six years older than me. He would have every new album. He had just got a new car. He would come out and hang out with me and my brother for a weekend, take us to the movies. Just ride around and do shit like an older brother or an uncle or someone. He would always have the new shit. Like the new New York, whatever was poppin’, he would have it.

You’re associated with a long list of solid rappers and producers like Mac Miller, Schoolboy Q, Ab-Soul, Chance the Rapper, Tyler the Creator, Diplo, A-Trak. Not only do you collaborate with these guys but you’re pals with them too. How did you become so friendly with so many influential artists? I think that I was a part of something that really had a huge influence on our culture in the late 2000’s digital age. We were a polarizing figure a little bit. When you were called The Cool Kids, it wasn’t like I named the group that because we were, it was ironic. It wasn’t. I thought that we were cool. It was hella punk bands and all these bands, they’d have The [insert name here] Kids. I was just like, oh that shit would be fresh. You know what I mean?


I feel like when kids like Mac or like Schoolboy or like AbSoul, when everyone of these dudes I met, they all got a story of when they heard The Cool Kids for the first time. To me, that shit blows my mind, you know what I’m sayin’? To have that effect on people that are now the stars of this next generation. To have that rap superhero effect. There’s nothing I see as competition, you get what I’m saying. I don’t see these guys ... when I meet them, I like people. I’ve never been wary of people. I don’t see the worst in people, I see the best.



In ‘96 when Ironman and all the Wu affiliated albums came out, he had that. Then there was one CD he just couldn’t stop talking about and that was C.N.N.’s The War Report. I just didn’t know who the fuck that was at that point in time. I was in like seventh grade. I didn’t know who they were, but we would listen to them every weekend. T.O.N.Y., Live On, Live Long, and a couple other songs from there. It’s just embedded in my head. It’s just one of the best debut albums you could’ve had.

And I’m not no pushover, so it ain’t like you could take my kindness for weakness, you know what I mean? When I meet people, I have a genuine intention for what their art is and I think with people like Casey, Mac, Schoolboy, all of these dudes, I met them and I started working out with the people from the west coast when I moved out here. I moved out there because of Alchemist, on the real. I would hang out with him so tough when





THERE AIN’T NOBODY THAT KNOWS HIM THAT DON’T THINK HE’S THE COOLEST MOTHERFUCKER EVER. I was there, that I just said, “Fuck it.” True that, when I be there, a lot of people would fall through or it was easier to get them to fall through because I was hanging out with Alchemist all day. It would be me and Alchemist riding around. Riding around Santa Monica and also that little element of stuff, kind of cemented generation to generation. Because Alchemist is that cool. There ain’t nobody that knows him that don’t think he’s the coolest motherfucker ever. I try to keep that up. There’s a lot of people where I looked up to, and I met them, it was hella underwhelming experience. I’m just not that dude. When I meet people that may have grown up on my music, I’m not better than them. I’m as excited as you are me. I feel like that respect translates. You’re not bitter at all about saying goodbye to your twenties, later this year? No. Honestly, I got to be one of the only motherfuckers telling the truth about his age. I know hella people older than me that say they’re younger than me. I embrace my shit. Thirty ain’t what it used to be no more. I don’t abide by no rules. I have no kids. I’m not married. I’ve never over consumed shit. I don’t got a house. I don’t have a car. It’s not that I don’t have money, I just don’t need that shit. I rap. I live in LA. People know me and I don’t have a car and I don’t give a fuck. Parking is a bitch and I don’t have a garage and I’m not trying to pay for somebody to break into my shit and take my book bag out. You know what I mean? My rap peers, they had

their book bag stolen out they cool ass car. Until I got a garage and I’m like isolated from the rest of ... it’s like, what’s the point? I never rapped myself into that corner, neither. I didn’t create this perception like Chuck Inglish could have pulled up on a fixed gear. Chuck Inglish could walk up to the bar. I could do whatever the fuck I want to do because that’s what I’m expected to do, you know what I’m sayin’? I never tried to live outside my means. Now, if I did come down in a Prowler or a Viper, you’d be like, damn that man shakes, too. It’s not too far-fetched. No, bitterness is not how you end life happy. I went through some shit the past couple years. At the top of the end of last year I lost my uncle who was a very close family member to me. The bittersweet part about it was I knew that when his last moment happened, he was doing something that he dreamed of, that he talked about doing his whole life, since I can remember. To me, that’s shit’s gold. You never know when you’re going to go, but if you’re going to be going, go out smiling. I know that he wasn’t mad. He wasn’t doing some shit that he didn’t want to do. He wasn’t with somebody he felt like he had to be with because of some other shit. He didn’t do that. Can you describe the visual sources you’re influenced by? I like to set up the room different. It’s not really something I keep going on the screen. There’s times where I have fake plants in the studio and it will be all covered with Christmas lights. There



THERE’S CERTAIN CHILDLIKE SHIT YOU JUST SHOULD NEVER GIVE UP. will be certain tropical themes that I’ll have around. Between the beach and Blade Runner, that’s where I’m at with my visuals. Blade Runner at the beach on some real shit. That’s really my style. If Blade Runner was on Venice Beach instead of wherever it was at, that’s what I would be. It could go from like, these crazy ass piggy banks I put on top of speakers to like, I got a morphing light. I have tons of candles that come in different colors that I bounce off other colors. When the beat’s playing, you can actually see shit. There’s certain childlike shit you just should never give up. That imagination turned slightly realistic, where almost you can believe it’s real, but that doesn’t matter. You can still enjoy it like you’re really seeing it. That happens when you can visually put out music.


There’s certain programs on the computer that I don’t fuck with because they don’t look cool. A lot of synthesizers on Logic, that shit looks like a fucking asthma inhaler. I don’t want to make

a synthesizer with an interface that look like a asthma inhaler. [Laughs] I’m visually connected. What I see-- well, I don’t see shit sharp. I I got a big ass stigmatism, where I can just see shit is shapely and it’s proportionate, and that’s kind of how I am with music. When I did Swerving, it was ... my whole album, if this makes sense, Convertibles is like a deep blue. Everything has always been blue. The room is blue or crazy ass purple. It was never a bright color, you know what I’m sayin’? It ended up sounding like that at the end of the day. I just always had the room blue. That’s how it works. If I’m watching something, I put on old Rap City on YouTube. I’ll put that shit on a loop and I’ll watch old Rap City: Tha Basement on silent while I’m making beats. I’m sad I never got to do that shit. I actually wanted to rap, but just go on Rap City: Tha Basement and just freestyle. I really wanted to DJ and it never happened. Maybe it will happen. If The Arsenio Hall Show can come back, maybe Rap City: Tha Basement will come back.


It’s not everything else. That’s just popular perception. That’s hip hop. At one point in time, Quiet Storm by Mobb Deep was a hit record on the radio all the time.

Yeah. That shit’s crazy, dog. When you think about that right now. [Laughs] And it was going in the club, like in every club. That was realistic. Now, that shit is a far fetched idea, a song like Quiet Storm will be one of the biggest songs of the summer. So it’s just like: what hip hop is it’s commercial sound now, it’s all commercial. Even the socalled trap EDM, that shit is in every commercial for the summer now. Corporations will fucking fuck something, like they will fuck it, they will seriously fuck it. They will be like oh shit, we need to fuck that. [Laughs] And they do that shit, dude.

Do you miss any part of sampling out of necessity rather than novelty? Hell yeah, I do. That was the golden age of rap. If you want to know what the fuck the golden age was, it was the fact that you could sample freely and you didn’t have people that couldn’t make music making music. It wasn’t backing these producers in the corner. You could actually just go to Anita Baker records and sample that shit, and just give back. Or if the publishing company wasn’t so greedy then and it was just a clearance. Imagine A Tribe Called Quest record with no samples. It’s not A Tribe Called Quest record, you know what I’m sayin’? After you pay attention to shit, you start to realize where things happen: greed and money fucks everything up. You went from samplers, the sampling era, phasing out to the ringtone era kicking in because they’re like, oh shit, well we got to make money somehow. That was during the ringtone era, and everything else has been eating shit.

While I’m very happy at the earning power of my professional field, at some point in time, there has to be a middle ground between: ok corporations need that and they need to start acting like they need it and stop acting like they want to fuck it. That’s why songs are over so fast. The iTunes top ten songs, that shit changes so much. I don’t know who the fuck is up there. I haven’t even heard the song, so I don’t know how it’s up there. It’s commercials. That’s cool, but there’s a better way to do it. We were just in a van talking about how Nikka Costa, that ... what was the name of that Nikka Costa song, the title of it? Like A Feather, yeah. That was in a Tommy Hilfiger commercial, a dope ass Tommy Hilfiger commercial, and that’s the first time I heard the song. There was the Guru Jazzmatazz and the Jordan commercial back in the day. There was Umi Says by Mos Def in a Jordan commercial from back in the day. There’s ways to do that shit dope. It’s just everything’s so quick and fast and people just want to fuck everything. Nothing is ... nobody’s using the crock pot. Nobody wants to make a lasting impression and shit. Even the Super Bowl commercials, what the fuck were those? What was going on there? You want to just have the biggest bell or the Cowboy stadium, like let’s just have the biggest fuck-



ing stream, you know what I mean? Like why? It’s cool to do it, but why? At least lie to us, you know what I’m sayin’? Like the George Forman grill. There was a why to that. There was a reason why everybody had one of those motherfuckers. That’s all that needs to come back to the relationship between music and commercials. The why. Why is this song in this commercial? When the Eminem song was in those Chrysler commercials, it made sense because it was in Detroit. Boom. I get it. When you hear certain songs in certain commercials and it fits, like that commercial from back in the day with the Dirty Vegas song in it. That shit fits. It made sense. There are songs on the radio right now that will just take the new words now, let me take a selfie. Get the fuck out of here, dog. All this shit is just like let me fuck it right now. Let me see how many times I can fuck it before it just crumbles. When everybody’s complaining about ah, well, the state of music, people just want to fuck shit.


As soon as they realize money has never done anything cool besides buy shit, you know what I mean? Food comes from the ground. You can make it. Everybody could figure out ways to actually enjoy shit without money. It’s just never going to happen. But there’s a common ground. It could be like the 90’s where shit was cool and motherfuckers had money. What the hell happened to that idea? Shit was cool and people had money. What the fuck problem? Why is that not the recipe?


Everybody’s talking about the 90’s, the 90’s, the 90’s. Well, at some point in time, in 1993, motherfuckers decided let’s give these people some money and then we’ll do some cool shit, too, and see what happens. Like, Independence Day was a movie. It wasn’t a remake. That shit was a movie. An original movie that came out on the fourth of July. Not a remake, the third version of a remake. Let me just say this for the record, I’m about to do a little side project before we get off, and it’s called Spider Man Was Whack. That movie was fucking whack, dog. I have a whole tape called Spider Man Was Whack.

That’s awesome. I think I’m going to make it a SoundCloud release, around Thanksgiving. I saw Robocop and I don’t even know how he became Robocop, because he didn’t even get shot. They just dissembled him and made him Robocop from what? That shit sucked. Then Spider Man was whack as hell because he was making out with Emma Stone on a bridge, while Jamie Foxx is fucking the city up. I don’t even think I seen Spider Man kick ass one time in that whole movie. That’s just what’s going on. There needs to be some ass kicking going down, you know what I mean? I don’t want to see ... this is going to burn, but I don’t want to see the next Fast and the Furious. I’m not going to lie to you, bro. I’m not trying to cry and watch that shit. I’m not trying to do it.


That Fast and the Furious number fucking twelve and now they don’t even got the guy that makes Fast and the Furious and they still trying to put that motherfucker out. That’s what I’m talking about. That’s why things are fucked up because we can’t stop fucking shit. We just keep trying to fuck it. They’re like, oh Fast and the Furious 12, how are we going to fucking call it? Call it Fast, Furious. Not Fast and the Furious. Not Fast and Furious. We’re going to call it Fast, Furious. Like, dude, I’m not stupid. We were just at Burger King and me and Asher were like, yo, let me get the mediums. They gave us the big ass cup, like yo, this is the medium now. Asher was like, nah, let me get the small. Like, bro, you just gave us a fucking large when we asked you for the medium. You’re going to make the mediums the large now just because you think ... yeah, that’s the world we live in. I just got ... small fries are not small fries anymore. The motherfuckers are medium fries. Right when the government tells you quit trying to make people fat, people are just like, oh, we’ll just change the name. That’s my mission statement, dog. I’m not stupid. I’m not making music for stupid people, I’m making music for people that are like, yeah, Mario Kart is actually a really good game. There’s certain shit that is actually like official in this world. I’m a part of that. I represent that path of the country.

OLYMPIC UNHOPEFULS. In 2014 we had no Olympic medalists on our team. This was a not a problem, this was our choice. In fact, while others were judging snowboarding by points, wins and losses, were in the streets judging snowboarding by amounts of fun had and clips captured. So while the Winter Olympics may be scared of below zero freezing temperatures in the streets of Minnesota, we will always be willing to give it a go in our newest collection of outerwear, gloves, hoodies and Airflight insulated jackets designed to keep you warm in the coldest of temperatures. Remember, you don’t need a network television camera to capture your glory, just a good crew, warm clothes, a board and an open mind‌

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Interview Michael Connolly 140



If sneaking into an anatomy facility and studying a fat man’s cut-open belly isn’t your thing, then kindly move along. If, however, the thought of pale formaldehyde preserved innards tickles your fancy then stick with me. For this issue I was lucky enough to get on a call with Austrian street artist NYCHOS, front-man of the agency/ collective Rabbit Eye Movement, to talk all things anatomy and art.

Let’s talk anatomy…Are you a boobs or butt guy? A butt guy. Do you have a favorite bodily system to draw? Circulatory, digestive, respiratory? Right now I’m drawing a lot of intestines. I really love to draw brains and intestines. Painting-wise, I think the lungs are really interesting and the cool thing about veins is I can just use them to hide mistakes. What was your first job? I’ve never had any job other than drawing. I think the first paid job that I actually got was a graffiti job. After six months painting graffiti, I got a good job doing it. It wasn’t very well paid, but after I finished school I immediately started to do illustration work. 142

Cartoons influenced me greatly, and I was obsessed with all kinds of comics. At first it was Batman, Superman and Spiderman, stuff like that. Later when I was a bit older it was the Ninja Turtles. Were your parents always supportive? Yeah, my parents were supportive but it was not always easy for them. There was definitely a period when I was spending an unhealthy amount of time with my creative ideas and just graffiti bombing, which didn’t always turn out so well. That wasn’t very easy for them then, but now, everybody’s happy. RIGHT

Dissection of a Mounty p: Christian Fischer OPENING

What influenced your creativity growing up? I was always attracted to painting and drawing.

Easter Rabbit, work in progress p: Upper Playground







What about now? What keeps you inspired? Do you read books? Do people inspire you? Is it your friends around you? Drugs? What is it that keeps you going? I think it’s a bit of everything. Sometimes I just catch myself looking at specific colors or color schemes or whatever, but it hasn’t always been like that. Back when I was more into the comic thing, I was always looking to make something very black and white, but now I’m searching for color schemes and outside things to work from. It’s a constant development. Sometimes you just find crazy things on the Internet and six months later you catch yourself doing your own version of it or something completely different that has its origin with that first image.


Do you like taking things that don’t have an anatomical structure, like the Spongebob you did, and creating their inner workings from scratch? Yeah. It’s definitely very fun for me. I get to look at something completely fictional and try to figure out how that body would really work for those cartoons.

Where does beer and metal fit into all of this? The beer thing actually isn’t a huge part of it, but there is one video where my crew members visited me for my birthday and we made this event called Drink and Draw, so for four days we just got wasted and produced some stuff, which was a lot of fun. You guys are big Iron Maiden fans? I am, yeah. Does metal influence your work at all? Yeah, it definitely does. There’s a lot of humor in the music. Heavy metal is so much based on humor… It’s kind of provocative at first but in the end it’s just funny. It just makes me laugh, and I think it has something to do with my approach to art as well. My work is gloomy at times but on the other side it also has humor, and I think that’s where it just comes together. I find that’s very important because I think many artists take themselves too seriously. People take themselves too seriously. It loses the fun when you try to be too serious.

What is the scene like in Austria and Europe versus the United States? Do you see a distinction there? There’s a big difference in style I would say. In my experience I feel there’s way more respect in the United States, though I cannot really say. Right now in San Francisco, if people really like something it will stay up for awhile. Here it’s more of like, “Okay, this is so cool. We’re going to destroy it.” It’s not like that everywhere, but it happens a lot. Out here people aren’t always appreciative of the scene, which is sad sometimes. When I went to Detroit there was so much freedom, but you have to be careful because you don’t know if something is gang-related or not. In Europe it’s more like just destroying each other, but I cannot really compare. They’re very different. Where does Rabbit Eye Movement come into play? What is REM? The Rabbit Eye Movement itself started in 2005. It came from a very personal encounter I had through some medical and psychic experiences, and I developed this idea about the path I have been following, which applies to all urban artists

as well. The Rabbit Eye Movement art space was born a couple years ago, and now we have an actual space; it’s kind of an agency, gallery and art space. Right now we are four people working here. We also bring artists from other countries to Austria so that they can have a better opportunity to show their stuff here. For example, Lauren is here from San Francisco, and she’s awesome. We’re also trying to push it more into a brand, so we’re producing shirts and gear, and we just started working as a coffee shop as well. It’s an all-purpose kind of space.


Dissection of a Gator p: Christian Fischer




PEOPLE TAKE THEMSELVES TOO SERIOUSLY. Who’s in the Weird Crew? The Weird Crew is a graffiti crew. We are 10 artists who have developed pretty much in the same ways and started pretty much at the same time. We are all illustrators and work as illustrators of some sort. Nobody has another job. We paint walls together and we are good friends. All of us live in Vienna and in Berlin mostly. We have a really good connection and make projects together. Explain how social media plays a role in your career? It seems like you guys have quite the following whether it’s YouTube hits or followers on Instagram. How important is it that you stay active and connected with your fan community? When you’re reaching a lot of followers it turns out to be very important because you see that what you do is appreciated. It is in some ways your voice, and people can respond like, “Yeah we fucking like it!” Of course it’s very basic but it’s a very easy way of advertising stuff to show what we’ve put out. It’s not that important, but you have to constantly post stuff just to show that

you’re alive and working on projects. Lately we’ve been working so much that we end up making a lot of posts. It’s impressive, from just one year of traveling and painting how the following can increase from like 28,000 to 130,000 followers. Not everything needs to happen on the Internet, but it’s really cool to see. It’s a way to reach more people without having to actually be there. For example, a Japanese person doesn’t have to be in the U.S. to see a piece of mine. Sometimes friends in the U.S. can see stuff online before I even get around to posting it because someone put it on Instagram already, which is a little bit weird…but also really good. You clearly have this very dialed and stylized dissection theme that runs throughout your work, and you’ve mentioned before that you may have developed it from growing up in a family of hunters. Is that specifically where you developed your interest for the internal perspective? It started when I was young kid, around four or five years old. My dad took me out to go hunting. Suddenly, I was cutting an animal open and the intestines and all the organs just dropped out, and smelled crazy. That kind of experience is not something you’re going to forget. I think bones have always been in my work...it’s better than painting flowers (laughter). It’s not that I do it to piss people off or make people feel disgusted. I really see a kind of beauty in it, because it’s just how our bodies work. I don’t see the blood. I see how it works and I think it is crazy machinery. How have you seen yourself progress your technical skill with that anatomical style and your knowledge regarding anatomy in general? Is it something you study? It’s definitely something I study and look at a lot. I also get inspired from pictures of anatomy. Once, I snuck up into an anatomy training center to just look at the corpses. There was a fat


Eye of the Tiger p: Christian Fischer p: REM, work in progress



man’s belly, cut open, and if you have a body in formaldehyde there’s no blood anymore, there’s no color. It turns like a grayish-green. To me it actually looks like chicken. It’s all very interesting. I study it a lot. I try to even push it and make it more internal, like with the x-ray effect, which I’ve been doing a lot lately. The studying part is very, very important.

wall with different colors because working with spray paint is so much easier for me. Sometimes with paint you get the wrong colors and have to change it again. It just takes way more time than on the wall, so I prefer spray paint. I love painting graffiti. It always will be a very important part of me. It just makes me happy. Yeah, in the end I just love my job.

Do you look at a lot of veterinary stuff? I know you illustrate a lot of animals. Yeah. The thing is I’m also not trying to be too specific. I still want to give my drawings a little bit of freedom within my style. With animals for example, I’d rather look at the body structure or how the skeleton looks. It’s very important to prepare the proportions. For example, what’s the difference between a normal house cat and a tiger? The organs from mammals are pretty similar anyways. You have your heart. You have your lungs. You have a liver and kidneys. It’s pretty much the same as in the human. But say for example, if you’re drawing a fish, it might have a very different liver and the liver might be along the spine with the lungs underneath. That is also why my research is very important.

I read that you started strictly in black and white and then transitioned into color. Was that a difficult process for you or did that come naturally? I always thought that before I used colors, I needed to know how to draw. I spent many, many years only sketching tiny shapes in black and white, like old-school comic illustrations. A lot of black, a lot of white. That was always very important, but after a while I was really only working with black and white and I didn’t know anything about colors, so I had to learn that.

What is your process like from inspiration to sketching it out, to the gallery or a mural? Is there anything special that you do? Sometimes it’s really different. I design my murals to be site specific. Most of the time, when I actually go to the spot it’s much easier to see what it’s going to be. Sometimes I’ll think, “Alright I’m going to do a crocodile,” and then I look at the spot and it’s like, “No, I guess a dissection or a cross-section of a cat would look better here.” That happens. Then I just freestyle it out because I use spray paint and I don’t need to do a special sketch for that. I’ll just sketch it and scale it straightaway on the wall. It’s great because if you do something wrong, you can just re-draw it again and it doesn’t matter.


Do you prefer one over the other? Like drawing versus larger scale murals? No. There’s always the drawing. Painting on a canvas is a completely different thing. After I do a little sketch or something I might do it on a

Tell me a little bit about your movie project that you have going on, Deepest Depths of the Burrows? The story starts here in Austria, in Vienna. I wanted to show what’s possible in one year of doing what I do, but also to tell a story about street art and graffiti around the world, and the urban art movement I’ve been a part of. First of all, we want to show how we do things here, and then we travel to Italy or to France or Detroit, painting walls and meeting artists. We interview a lot of people to get their stories. For example, we have the story of one artist who started as a kid in Detroit and then moved to New York and opened up their business, and then quit everything and started completely new with other things. There are so many different places that have inspired me in different ways, and now we have footage of it. The documentary shows how we’ll just meet up with someone we know and just live their life with them and see what they do in their studio time. The concept of the movie is based off of the idea of Rabbit Eye Movement--everything’s connected. I’ve been thinking about this documentary for a couple of years now and I’m really happy to finally be able to do it.






Rocky the parrot is the only living thing Blue loves. Rocky is a spinach green thing with shocking smears of red feathers that make it look like his face is bleeding. He lives in an iron cage that takes up half of Cody and Blue’s living room, and he’s the kind of parrot that can spit out random words through his lumpy grey tongue, but only when no one wants him to. YEAH, is his favourite word. Rocky loves to wait until we’re all tipsy and sprawled across couches and starting to get annoyed with each other. Someone, normally Adam, will bring up something that pisses someone else, Words Kahli Scott normally Angelie, off, and a slurred fight will start. Rocky will bob up and down in the background saying, ‘YEAH YEAH YEAH’, egging everyone and no one on. Sometimes, Blue will take Rocky out of the cage to calm him down. He’ll put him on his shoulder and Rocky will nuzzle his beak into Blue’s blonde curls and screech, ‘HAIR HAIR HAIR’ instead, which only Angelie finds funny.



finger last month and scraped off a clean streak of perfect red nail polish. If it was Cody who stole Rocky, then Rocky’s probably dead. Cody has been dreaming of wringing the parrot’s neck since his girlfriend dumped him two weeks ago. But then there’s Adam, who likes to steal things. When I let Adam stay with me for a week, he stole my mosaic plate set and all my laundry pegs. He laughs about slowly stealing all his aunt’s jewellery, piece by piece, so the poor woman thinks she’s losing it. He steals magazines and packets of chewing gum and super-sized energy drinks from his work every day. He also kind of stole Cody’s girlfriend, but Cody doesn’t know about that yet. I wish I’d stolen Rocky. Then I’d have done something important. Then I’d have done something that got the group talking, that got the group interested, for once. I’m feeling pissed off that someone has beaten me to it.

When it comes down to it, any one of us could have stolen Rocky. We all hate that bird. We hate his glassy eyes and his sour-smelling cage and his cackled ‘YEAH’s and the fact that Blue likes him better than all of us combined.

Of course, there were other people at the party too. Drunk people, stupid people, mean people, clever people, people who don’t like Blue, maybe people who love Blue, maybe people who love birds. I imagine a nameless girl, her hair high in a cinnamon bun, her khaki coat down to her knees, grabbing Rocky by his spinach neck and shoving him in her coat pocket, just because no one ever thinks she’s a bad girl. This nameless girl’s brother, the one who kept changing the music, could have helped. This story might have nothing to do with any of us at all.

I think Cody hates Rocky the most. Rocky is the third unwanted roommate who does everything wrong and doesn’t pay rent. Rocky’s cracked birdseed flicks onto the greying carpet and crunches under Cody’s bare feet, sticking in between his toes and making its way into his hair and his ears and his underwear. Rocky’s screeches and scratches and squaws wake Cody up in the middle of great dreams. Rocky bit Cody’s girlfriend’s

But it does, and we all know it. In the silence that falls over us after Blue’s words, as we look out at the silver horizon to avoid looking at each other, we’re all thinking, we know exactly who stole the parrot. It’s only Angelie who looks up to the sky instead, maybe because the sea knows she did it too, maybe because she’ll find forgiveness in the leaking clouds. I know exactly why Angelie stole Rocky and it makes me feel sick.





Humans can grow horns. Called cutaneous horns, they grow when the skin surface thickens, typically in response to disease.

As much as 6% of the worlds population- more than 400 million people suffer from addiction to sex.

One pound of peanut butter can contain up to 150 bug fragments and 5 rodent hairs. Babies are born without kneecapssort of.. They have cartilage in their kneecaps which does not ossify into bone until 3-5 years of age. On February 11, 1959, thousands of small fish rained over the village of Mountain Ash in South Wales, one of the several recorded instances of live fish falling from the sky.

The average human loses 85,000 brain cells each day, but only regenerates 50 new ones. The acid in your stomach is so powerful that is can dissolve a razor blade in less than a week. A person can live weeks without eating but will only survive 11 days without sleep.

A medium fruit-and-yogurt smoothie at Dunkin Donuts contains four times as much sugar as a chocolate frosted cake doughnut.

Masturbation was considered a sin in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. Before the 1960’s excessive masturbation was thought to be a mental condition, a fixation on immature or undesirable behavior that led to adult sexual dysfunction. Peaches, apples, nectarines, and strawberries are among the top six “dirtiest foods” even after being peeled and rinsed.

The sale of sex toys and vibrators are banned in Alabama and Mississippi. Hindus believe cow urine is medicinal. It is often drunk at religious festivals.  The drive-thru line on opening day of a new Mcdonalds in Kuwait City, Kuwait reached seven miles long at times.  Since 1947, the US government has changed its explanation of the Roswell crash four times. 

Many fast food employees were murdered on the job in 1998. An average of 4-5 fast food workers are killed every month. Usually during robberies (fast food is largely a cash business). The moon is moving away from the Earth at a rate of 3.8 centimeters per year. ”Dork” is the proper term for a whale penis.

In 2009 a black angus calf was born in Colorado with seven legs, two spines, and two hooves on one leg. The calf only survived for ten minutes.

l a n d ya c h t z . c o m


Wild Life Hours 12pm-4pm Every Day Phone 802-343-2555 shopthewildlife.com Places to eat Farm House, Ahli Babas Closest park Burlington Skate Park Points of interest Lake Champlain, Triple Buckets, Mount Mansfield, Church St. Public transportation Taxis, Some bus routes Days off Ride skate, downhill bike, wake skate, festivals 154 Night life Wild Life Wednesdays at Half Lounge, Nectar’s, Manhattan’s, field parties

The Wild Life Shop breeds culture within its upstairs “underground” lair. Located in the heart of Downtown Burlington, they play a major role in the street scene. Whether it’s delivering the newest and freshest clothes, throwing parties, or hosting art shows they always have a hand in something fun. What began as an all in one creative factory and vintage wear destination recently transformed into a 2,100sq ft store.  The expansion has brought in the likes of 10 Deep, Akomplice, Gnarly, Alife, Krink, Ironlak Paints, Gpen (etc).  Make sure to scoop an original from Wild Life’s in house brand featuring cut & sew projects, hats, flasks and patches.  They’ll sweeten your purchase with a bunch of free stickers. A monthly art show, rail jams, and the new Wild Life Music Collective makes them a force in the snow/skate/creative community. WLMC throws parties at least once a week (think all night basement party but at the bar) as well as bringing in big name artists.  Next time you’re in the Burlington area look for the Wild Life grizzly on Main Street and afterwards join the Wild Life crew at a WLMC.  We know they look forward to showing you the Wild Life of Burlington.    

Profile for Steez Magazine

Steez Magazine Issue 32  

Steez Magazine Summer Issue 32 2014. Featuring a Scotland Checking In, Alexa Brown Show & Tell, Summer Product Review, Esoteric Interview, N...

Steez Magazine Issue 32  

Steez Magazine Summer Issue 32 2014. Featuring a Scotland Checking In, Alexa Brown Show & Tell, Summer Product Review, Esoteric Interview, N...