Like I said in my review of Landscapes 1 last year, DVD’s in the modern era are a sad rarity in our scene from my perspective, during the last two years you can count those on less than one hand. Dane Beardsley’s Same thing daily project and IGI’s travel video are all we have had. Stewart Munro from Australia stepped up to the plate with an ambitious project to collect and edit together rider sections from all the planet, when you think about that in the modern internet culture and free edits available everyday it almost seems like a thankless task.
Thankfully Stewart stuck to the task which being so far away from all the other riders is I can imagine a tough task to collate together. The downloadable video straight to your laptop is catching on in other sports such as Skateboarding, more recently massive companies such as Adidas are releasing their projects for a small fee online. Will it catch on to what is essentially a small flatland audience? Only time will tell…
Landscapes 2 starts with a nice intro describing verbally the feeling of flatland and what it’s all about “it is a mirror that shows each of us who we are”. There’s always a unwritten formula to making a DVD, banger section to start, middle and the all important who got the last section. Would this follow suit, 52 minutes long let’s get into this!
I saw Tyler Gilliard rocking the new Colony Exon tyre at the battle in the Rockies contest last weekend and he said he was working on a review. Check out what Tyler has to say about the tyre, and you can grab yourself a set at http://www.flatlandfuel.com.
Sebastian Grubinger just sent in a nice heads up on all the new Heresy range that is now available. The Ascend Frames in different sizes, from 18″, 18.5″, 19″, 19.5″, 20″, 20.5″. Head over to their product page to check the frames and specs, also they have the new 108 peg, and Reign Pivotal seat, bars! Heresy run a dialled operation, check it!
It was a nice surprise today to see an email in my inbox from Percy Marshall who kindly reviewed Dub’s new igi pegs without me even asking! Percy has some interesting observations on the peg, read on!
Review/Photos: Percy Marshall
My current pegs are just stumps and my foot no longer sticks to them or even lands on them during tricks, so I decided to get a new pair of pegs.
When I first set eyes on the Dublin pegs, I thought it was too good to be true! I mean JUST LOOK AT THEM! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
So I was hooked on the pegs and realized I needed a pair to replace my 2.75″ stumps that don’t do me no good, if even just for the sick looks.
Dub is a great bussinessman making these sick looking pegs; but what I didn’t realize was how much functionally they are!
I no longer have to hammer in my socket through the fresh debris of peg material covering my peg hole. Another advantage is the lack of extra tools required to remove the head for easy access during peg removal.
It’s a socket hole so you’re already using the tool in the first place. Also, the peg doesn’t get sharp ridges on it’s head. I’m no longer finding bits of skin and blood on my peg ends, only the supple smooth rounded mushroom that is a pleasure to grab and functional to hold.
My firsts discovery was that their still pretty light even though there’s a hunk of material (aluminum) on the end of each; I worried about weight being excess because of this design, but that was put to rest when I held them.
The grip tape is fine but I probably don’t need it so it’s ok if it comes off naturally, but I may take it off; I like my peg shaft smooth as butter for foot pivoting and this supple old-man-grey grip tape gives me the heeby jeebees.
The other thing is the nifty little lip I keep finding my hands on. Even without the peg head attached, there is a nice little lip on the outer end of the peg. These details are amazing! TOTALLY SICK!
The heads are reverse threaded so they don’t accidently spin off your peg when you’re taking the head off.
Of course the best part by far is that the peg looks like family jewels!
I feel it is hard to put into words the influence the Baco crew have had on the BMX world, and especially the flatland world. Pre internet days where print and videos such as the Baco and Dorkin’ series were essentially like bibles for every flatlanders, for tis reason footage remained golden until its dropped in your VCR.
The most immediate that comes to my mind, In the modern day you can see the influence Chad Degroot’s riding in the Baco videos inspired a number of generations in the japanese scene. Especially back wheel riding!
But the influence goes way beyond that, how people dressed, the music people listened to, and of course the tricks people learnt. The thing about Baco that stood out to most might be the most simple thing, the whole crew had FUN on their bikes. And more importantly were themselves on their bikes, all too often in the modern era you can see riders trying to be something they are not. So many characters throughout the whole movie. This huge part of BMX seems to have crawled underneath a rock, maybe this is the video to bring that out!
As much as things change in BMX, the fundamental stays the same. The message to me was clear as I started watching Baco Push it to 11, all the memories came flooding back. The bottles being thrown off the bridge, Chad lacing killer combos in girls dresses, was Mark Hilson gay? Dylan’s crazy back wheel pedal combos, and possibly my favourite Dylan Worsley clip, when he is in a caboose and knocks crisps out of his hands with his bars as he rides out. The riding because the crew had so much fun, brought their own flavour hasn’t really dated at all, which is testament to what the Baco crew achieved.
Another big factor that is often overlooked, BMX! It’s all here, and flatland can mix with park, street, dirt, vert, it’s all towards the same goal of having fun. The great thing about the Blu Ray disc, is the amount of footage that can be loaded on it, the extra section is absolutely amazing. I have still yet to find the hidden video, I’m guessing it’s Baco Uncut?
Baco Push it to 11 is an absolute Must Watch! And one for the collector, I know I will watch this back in years to come, laugh and smile.
Like you reading this review, I was curious about the Moto Bicycles pedal. Made out of wood? Totally flat? Grip tape, would the wood last? What would a totally flat pedal feel like? Up until now, interms of a flatland pedal, I don’t think a great deal of thought has been put into the design, certainly in terms of thinking outside the box.
Ali B over at Moto Bicycles asked me if I would like to review the pedal, of course due to my curiosity I was down to test the pedal. Like everything I test, I wanted to give it a few months so I could write as accurate review as possible for you the rider reading Flatmatters.
So I am the first to admit I was sceptical over the design, my first impressions were good when the pedals arrived, the packaging and attention to detail to begin with were way and beyond what I have seen from a pedal before, even down to small details like having the allen key with the pedal + spare grip tape. Sometimes the little things make such a big difference. Not to mention the weight of the pedal, 150g for a pair.
I used an Odyssey pedal before using the Moto pedal, right away the feeling on the pedals was like being on a skateboard but on your bike obviously. Due to the grip tape, moving around and adjusting your foot on pedal was easier and what I didn’t consider at all, was safety and trick options opening up. The pedal is the flattest pedal on the market, at a total profile of 15mm. You can lean on the pedal and not cut your leg open, plus it opened up moves I haven’t done for years as well. (two footed dump truck ala Pete Brandt springs to mind immediately) as well as thinking of new ideas that I could do using the leaning on pedal/shin trick concept.
I am three months into testing the pedal, and so far the wood has held up perfectly (see photos above). I am still on my first sheet of grip tape, honestly right now couldn’t be more happier with the performance of the pedal. The design of the pedal like everything designed and made in Germany is genius and so stylish and even more so now they are available in colours as well, and like all things simple it makes me wonder how has this not been done before. I guess from a consumer standout it’s only negative is the price, if Ali and Moto Bicycles can find a way to cut the price down (maybe a plastic pedal?) this will be universally on every riders flatland bikes.
Aggro Rag Freestyle Mag! Plywood Hoods Zines ’84-’89: The Complete Collection by Mike Daily
Aggro Rag Freestyle Mag! Plywood Hoods Zines 84-89: The Complete Collection contains all 1-12 issues of what in my opinion was and is the holy grail of the ‘zine era. For those of you not familar with ‘zines, they were largely put together with a typewriter, a xerox machine, hand writing, drawings and whatever your imagination could think up–countless hours spent cutting and pasting pre-Apple computers. In a lot of ways I think the ‘zine era had a lot more personality than any magazine or website could ever give you.
Flatmatters would probably not here without Aggro Rag, which inspired me to start my own ‘zine (Totally Intense) during my younger years. It was my childhood dream to get hold of an issue of Aggro Rag. When the book arrived on my 39th birthday last week, I felt like my collection was complete. My overwhelming thought writing this review, is that you really cannot put a price on what this book is worth. But at $24.43 this book is a steal of a deal!
The book is no holds barred, 443 pages of history! A historical archive of one of the most influential crews to ever leave their mark on BMX, the Plywood Hoods, and of course the most influential flatlander of all time, Kevin Jones.
The book opens with some great Foreword/Intro writing by Andy Jenkins and Mark Lewman, both of Freestylin’ magazine fame. Andy recalls the first time he met Mike Daily at an AFA contest in New York in 1986, and Lew writes about their meeting through US mail: “When Freestyle was new. The sport felt like it moved so fast you could feel it shifting under your feet. Paradoxically, the information moved as slowly as the pace of a monthly magazine or an AFA contest; between these events, BMX kids were left to their own devices to fill in the gaps and write their own history… Along with with VHS sister media, Dorkin’ in York, A-rag became a national underground phenomenon and within 3 years it was the, uppercase italics, premier Xeroxed freestyle publication.”
Lewman’s intro is followed by Daily’s three-page new interview with Kevin Jones “about the cover”. Kevin recalls about the cover shot: “It’s a squeakerson, or whatever. Wheelchair walk, sittin’ on the handlebars. I don’t really remember what it would have been called.”, his first triple decade on the CW in the photo, his breakdance influences, riding with Skyway Tuffs and later going on to ride for Skyway, and collecting old bike parts. It is brilliant engaging stuff!
It is great to see the advances through the ‘zine as the issues developed, not only in riding, but design, editorial, content, xerox art, and graphics. A one-page intro leads into each issue.
If you are paying attention, you will notice that the number “43” appears throughout: in the publication date, the price, and so on, another Plywood Hoods touch to the book that adds personality to the project. You sense as much as the Hoods pioneered modern day flatland, none of this has gone to their heads: They had a blast. BMX was truly about having fun and expressing themselves whether through riding, Dorkin’ videos, ‘zines or any other creative outlet.
Photo credit: Jared Souney.
It would be a massive review if I were to list in detail everything that is contained within the book: countless editorials as you’d expect from 12 issues (Issue 3 contains words that ring true to this day, Society and its perception of us–if you have ever been kicked out of a car park, you will relate) and Issue 9 “Are you a contest zombie?”, brilliant insight into the Hoods way of thinking. Mike Daily writes about the differing attitudes they came across at an AFA Austin Texas contest they covered in the same issue. The Hoods were hanging out at the hotel with a bunch of “well-known freestyle personalities”, and Daily comments: “Instead of checking the tape out, though, the other guys in the room felt the need to cut down mostly every rider for one reason or another.” The Hoods didn’t say anything, Daily writs, and it wasn’t until later that night that they discovered that all three of them had simultaneously thought, “These guys are fake.”
Daily goes to comment about the mocking of Jason Parkes that had ensued. To bring context to this story without including the whole article, the Hoods were big fans of Jason Parkes, and I can totally appreciate why. One of the riders asks, “You LIKE that stuff?” to which Mark Eaton replies “YEAH!” confidently. It is golden, gripping stuff from the archives.
Daily goes on to talk about these kids that live just for the contests, and do their thing without a care in the world. He wraps the article up with: “What I am trying to say is, don’t expect every freestyler in the free world to have the same values you have. Not everyone rides simply to show superiority over others. By the same token, not everyone rides solely for personal pleasure either. Just don’t look down upon a fellow biker for what he stands for, or what he does in a contest, or how he freestyles. The bottom line is…just ride. There shouldn’t be anything else.”
Somewhere through my younger years putting together Totally Intense ‘zine, I coined the phrase “Ride first, read later” and I never knew where I got it from. As it turns out, I got it from Mike and Aggro Rag. And this attitude–to just ride your bike–shines through in every story in the book, time after time.
I’ve gone into detail about this editorial, and I thought it worthwhile as it shows the Hoods way of thinking. They were totally open to riding their bikes in all forms, whether at the lot, a ditch, a backyard ramp, whatever. There is something really pure about what they did, and probably still are doing today, just not all together, as they moved to different parts of the country. The legacy lives on.
Of course there is much more content besides: cartoons, and AFA/2-Hip contest reports. Throughout, the rivalry between Kevin Jones and Rick Moliterno comes up in AFA repos and even the Dizz Hicks interview in Issue 9, which I found interesting. It was something as a kid growing up reading Freestylin’ I never got a sense of, and later on in the three-part intro to Daily’s 16-page grand finale to the book, “Kevin Jones: The Man. The Interview.”
The Hoods document numerous how-to’s, skateboarding, a visit to the home of Freestylin’, (Torrance, CA), and skatepark sessions. In Issue 6, Mike Daily recalls: “The biggest perk [of being a ‘zine guy back in the mid- 80’s] for me was being asked to contribute to Freestylin’. That was the shit. As cool as it was to make your own ‘zine, getting something printed in Freestylin’ was infinitely cooler. Andy [Jenkins] requested permission to reprint an editorial I’d published in Aggro Rag. It was called ‘A Puppet No More’ and ran in an ‘Off the Deep End’ with a photo of my favourite rider, Ceppie Maes. I think it won a design award.”
At 443 pages, over time I pick up the book and I find something new that I had previously missed. One of my favourite things about this book is the amount of Interviews with groundbreaking and influential people/characters in BMX and flatland. It struck me that a lot like the Hoods riding, Mike Daily and the Hoods were interested in other riders that brought something fresh to the table. The list is extensive: Dale Mitzel, Jamie McKulik, Kenneth Evans, Mario Salas, Dave Pak, Gary Pollak (the inventor of Pinky Squeaks and Perverted Boomerangs), John Swarr, Craig Grasso (his infamous naked ramp run at the Enchanted Ramp in SD appears on the cover of Issue 11), John Huddleston, Ceppie Maes, Dizz Hicks, Jason Parkes, Aaron Dull (who did the caboose on the other coast of the US at the same time as Kevin), and Pete Augustin. Chris Day in Daily’s intro to Issue 11 gets asked how he felt about all the random “fidge sequences” in Dorkin’ 2. The list goes on: Jym Dellavalle, Dave Mirra (four-page new interview in Issue 12), Chris Moeller, Perry Mervar before he turned Pro, Marty Stoyer and…
Of course, the highlight for many: “Kevin Jones: The Man. The interview.” is so engaging. The most influential flatland rider of all time has largely remained mysterious, which only adds to the intrigue. Throughout the 443 pages of the book, when you read the Plywood Hoods’ attitude towards fame and contests, it becomes a clearer: You get the impression that Jones and the Hoods went and had fun every day, whether it was a ten-hour day riding at Mount Rose, or blasting a tabletop at the local skatepark. It was all about fun and the regular “fidge” moment.
As I already commented, there is a wonderful purity to what the Hoods achieved that might never be matched in this day and age of the Internet–riders of all levels who send in footage daily. I feel thankful that the Hoods took the time to document what they got up on their bikes in video form as well as in ‘zine format, and collated it together in this wonderful book. I have often wondered what flatland would have been like now without Kevin Jones and the Plywood Hoods.
The Book fittingly ends with the part I am sure, anyone who is interested in flatland will want to read. The Kevin Jones interview opens with a three-part intro which gives you eight pages of insight into Kevin’s background as a breakdancer and his early days on Skyway. Mike Daily writes about Kevin getting picked up by Skyway, and dropping a whole new realm of tricks at the AFA Masters in Austin, Texas, on May 2, 1987. Kevin dropped the trolley, the crank-a-roni, the elephant glide, and after his run had ended unfortunately, the locomotive. Lew at Freestylin’ reported: “Kevin Jones got the crowd louder during his run than anyone else the whole weekend, including the pros.”
Everyone, it seems–aside from Kevin–couldn’t believe that he got second place to Rick Moliterno. Kevin comments: ” I would have been satisfied if I’d have made the top ten, and then I got second. I didn’t know why there was all the controversy about it…[Rick] beating me. I was just glad to get second, plus I got sponsored. That’s all I wanted to do anyways was get sponsored. I never early cared about getting first.”
The intro goes back to Kevin’s younger years to document his first competition at the AFA Masters in Long Island, New York, in September 1986. Kevin was already making personal modifications to his CW, such as the homemade locking lever, and bringing new tricks to the table. He dropped a handstand-type boomerang which immediately earned him a lot of respect (Rick Moliterno even commented: “The man don’t joke about boomerangs.” Kevin managed to tie with CW’s Greg Kove “with a completely blown run,” Daily reports.
Mike Daily goes onto the write about Kevin’s contest achievements, and also the Hoods’ first hearing about Tim Treacy doing a scuffing trick call the backyard. Once Kevin had worked out what the technique involved, he went about developing his first scuffing move, the locomotive, whilst holding the beam in his parents’ garage. He planned to drop it as his last trick in Austin, Texas. Around this time, both Kevin and Aaron were inventing the same tricks on the east and west coasts of the country: the trolley or the puppet, the caboose or the stick bitch.
I could go on and on, as I am mesmerised by the text. It’s fascinating stuff. Daily discusses the post-Skyway era with Kevin’s time on GT, his contract with GT being terminated (this is a bit I will leave for you to find out about!), AM riders being inspired by Kevin, and so on. I don’t want to reel off the whole book.
The new Kevin Jones interview–with quotes by various friends and fans–addresses the origin of scuffing, the best basketball sneakers of the 80’s/90’s, trick names, what Kevin feels about modern day flat, why he waited so long to turn pro, what bike frames he designed, family life, having kids, his dream job and why he stopped making up new tricks. There is a great part where they talk about the Hang 5, and the impact it’s had on street riding in the modern day.
It’s a fitting end to a beautiful piece of flatland and BMX history that I will hold dear to myself forever.
This book is a must-have if you are into flatland and BMX riding–whether you’re old school, new school, mid school. Whatever label you care to put on it, going to school will get you an education, help you learn about the sport, and learn about these influential riders that have shaped what we do and love today. And now after 20 or so years wondering, I now know what the art of “fidging” is.
The book is $24.43, an absolute steal!!! Go preorder this right now direct from Mike Daily on http://aggrorag.com Mike is offering signed copies + t-shirts and hoodies package deals until 11:59pm PST on Wednesday, March 13th, and is expecting to ship all preorders worldwide from Oregon before the book’s official release date of April 3, 2013 (4.3.13). It will be something you will look back on for years to come.
Thank you Mike Daily, and thank you to Kevin Jones and the Plywood Hoods for making flatland and BMX what is today!
Well worth checking out this special episode of FlatWebTV that dropped last week!
This is great! Let the world know how the product is! It seems like we all waiting for that smooth, reliable freecoaster. Is the Ezra the one John?
“I’ve been asked how my Ezra freecoaster is working. It never engages and rolls great but it keeps slipping the clutch plate. Heres 3 clips of it doing it. It usually happens as I apply pressure to the pedals during a combo but also happens just pedaling normal (clip 2). It is a street hub so I’m sure greater pressure is applied riding street. Anyone else have this issue??”
Down to the final part of my review of 2012! If you have been following the reviews, you will know they are pretty detailed, and true to form, it doesn’t change here!
September kicked off with some contest news, Lee Musselwhite won the UK Championships for the second year in a row in Bristol. Over in Budapest, Adam Kun won the OSG 3 contest which looked like one of the best events of the year, great to see Mike S on the podium, go back and look through the trailers and contest footage, great contest in all aspects. This is of course served as the warm up to the biggest contest of the year, the Red Bull Circle of Balance in Kyoto, Japan! This was definitely my highlight of the year, flatland on the big stage, and of course I had the honour of hosting the live feed to all of you at home.
When Andy Zeiss, “Hey E, do you think you can talk about flatland for two and half hours with Frank Lucas”. I laughed to myself and thought that is not a problem at all, I planned a loose show taking into account Frank had previously rode in the Circle of Balance event. Unfortunately Frank was unable to make it, so after a few meetings at the event we invited a few guests (The US Haro Team were in the house! Ryan Nyquist, Dennis McCoy were chosen, and a few riders as they would drop out of the contest, and I proposed inviting people to tweet into me with shootouts and thoughts on the events, to give it that interactive feel. The build up to the final show you all watched was incredible, the Haro team put on an epic show outside of the event. It was role reversal in Japan, Flatland centre stage, Park riding as a warm up. Then I started to have doubts, “shit two and a half hours is a long time on your own”, as it turned out, the show honestly felt like half an hour, when your having a blast like that, it’s easy to see why!
Thinking about the event now still gives me goosebumps, and I still have visions of standing up for the last final battle and screaming my lungs off with Dennis and Terry thinking we were going going fall off the top of the bleachers. Flatland this night definitely went to a higher place, congratulations once more to Viki Gomez, achieving his third COB win over a ten year period, something I do not think will happen again. Hosting the show was a total blast and something I will never forget, thank you Andy, Red Bull, and flatland!
The aftermath of the Circle Of Balance was quite rightly taken up with tons of videos from the contest, I especially liked Deep Bmx’s take on it, who toured Japan, and showed that tour vibe, with lil’ parts showing the contest. I also did caught up with the winner Viki Gomez that is well worth a read again, great hearing his perspective and emotion at winning for the third time. Once again if you check the bibliography after this article and can you scroll through each video as you so wish.
Getting back home and back to reality, and the jetlag even though I was only in the land of rising sun for 4 days, was hell for a week. I got back home and remember the first video that I watched was a trailer featuring Shuichi Osada one of my favourite riders from japan, a feeling hit me, why did I come home? Then dropped Aki’s video, right after the COB! This was largely slept on, I’m guessing due to the timing of its release…
September 13th was an awesome day for edits and news! Long Beach’s Sean Fontenot dropped a crazy “Never give up” edit with some mind boggling xfted cab stuff and took the harshest slams, this dude has that fire, go back and watch this one! Dedication to the cause! 2012 was a great year for Jean Francois Bouilainne, and he deserves his hook up with Flatware, a few days later JFB teamed up with Sevisual to bring you his “Welcome to Flatware edit!”!
The FlatWeb TV guys gave so much to flatland last year, aside from the regular shows which is enough work, I really thought there individual edits stood out, and the edit from Vancouver stood out, so good to see some fresh Cory Fester footage! The day finished with the Nora Cup Nominees being announced, with many people speculating as always, it was for sure between Ucchie and Dominik.
On September 17th, one of the most underrated riders on the planet in my opinion, Thomas Noyer dropped a crazy edit entitled “Pieces of Combos” that further enhanced his rep in flatland circles. I expect big things from this man in 2013! Pete Brandt and the crew featured in a tight “Clocktower jam SF” edit on the same day. Always get good vibes watching the SF jam edits, makes me want to go back someday!
A day later and Red Bull released a really tight edit from the COB event, the event already had mad amount of coverage, but this came over as being fresh, which is amazing in itself after how much coverage came out.
On the 21st, Yohei “Ucchie” Uchino was voted as the Nora Cup Flatlander of the year! Winning the first two stops of the Word Circuit and a banging 430 part. A part of me does feel this award goes out to early in the year as there still were a few months to go, but hey, it might not have made much difference anyway…
As the month began to wind down, the edits/news didn’t, JFB was on a high from the FlatWare hook and took the win at the FlatDance 2012 event in Slovakia.
I’m always looking for the next “big rider”, and this kid might well be it, all year he released progressive videos! If you do not know the name “Mateus Beckmann”, type his name into the search bar, and watch a young kid enjoying flatland progression, it is beautiful to watch unfold!
Alberto Moya enjoyed a great 2012, released his 360 bar flip Cliffhanger, entitled “Aoosttt” as well as yet another scene video featuring the riding of Moya, Guelo, and Varo Hernandez. Like Thomas Noyer, I expect big things from Moya this year!
Two of the best edits of the year dropped on the 26th and 27th. And in a way summed one of the great things about 2012! Diversity. Matt Wilhlem’s “At home” edit has all cringing at screen with “that slam”, and amazed as always at the speed of his riding! James White “Whitelines” edit follows a calmer route in riding but equally impressive, and his “bikeflip” surprised the flatland world. The term “Must Watch” was seeming to overdone, but was truly worth it. I imagine these two edits played on repeat at many a flatlanders house over the rest of the year!
Jean William Prevost killed it at the Red Bull COB, and was a name now everybody was talking about. His Interview with Marked Mayhem was perfectly timed, talking about his riding, his travels, and contest experience. Another guy to look out for this year, how would he follow up the success of Japan. Toronto is fast approaching…
On the same day I caught up with Flatland legend, Kerry Gatt to discuss his COB experience, this actually turned out to be one of my favourite interviews of the year. If you missed this one, hit the bibliography, great read!
The month finished with a couple of sweet edits from Jesse Puente “Welcome to Wrung”, Davis Dudelis 60 meter Nose manual, and Mike S exercising at LVR! What a blinding month to the growing list!
In October, the edits were still going from the Red Bull COB. This was one was on a different tip though, and focussed documentary style on Deco owner and rider(s) Chad Degroot and Kerry Gatt! Take a peak back at this one, great edit by Hiroshi!
A day later Tom at Sevisual released a dope black and white edit from the The bridge jam in Vienna, great riding from Markus Redlburger, Sebastian Grubinger, amongst others.
On October 4th I was out in Tossa del Mar, an hour north of Barcelona to judge the Rebel jam. Sunshine, beaches, and beautiful postcard views for a week. As always the Rebel jam is run entirely different. And actually made judging flatland a lot easer, if you had to pick winners from the weekend that would be Jesse Puente who had the run of his life, Matthias Dandois, and Alexis Desolneux who hit two of his hardest moves. But the Rebel jam is all about the BMX experience, I hope to go back to this venue one day. Beautiful.
The worst thing about the Rebel jam was the wi-fi, painfully slow which made updating the site very tricky and time consuming more than usual. Whilst all eyes were on the Rebel jam, there are still amazing edits dropping worldwide. Case in point, the Huntington beach edit featuring Terry Adams, Bobby Carter and Sean Fontenot, this edit captured that HB vibe from the 90’s, and whilst it wasn’t a throwback edit at all, it took many of us way back to that time when HB was the capital of the flatland world.
On October 9th,the Flat WebTV guys dropped an amazing post Red Bull COB show, that featured great insight from the winner Viki Gomez, the MC Scott O’Brien, myself on livefeed, Mike S from judging perspective, plus many more. Well with going back and watching this one!
Two days later, Jason Plourde dropped an intense edit entitled “Liberate”, last year it really felt Jasn had found his way, destroying the back wheel with Raphael Chiquet like pivots, and multiple footjam decade variations mid combo, mixing them into whoppers, amongst other tricks. Amazing!
A week after Rebel jam the focus shifted to the other side of the world. Austin, Texas. And the Texas Toast event, plenty on the line for the year end AM Flat titles, TJ Perry took the win in am, we interviewed him shortly after which caused quite a response! Todd Carter was right behind Tj and took the year end title, congrats Todd! (hit the bibliography for interviews with TJ and Todd!) And in Pro, Dominik Nekolny dropped a hammer last combo, that had many saying the hardest line every done in a contest. One thing is for certain, after a bad start to the weekend with the Pralex car getting broken into and Dom’s bag getting stolen. Winning the event, and the year end title in pro, improved things! What a year for Dominik! Texas Toast along with the Rebel jam took a great deal of the coverage during October!
Some of UK scene headed to Bristol (who has one of the best scenes in the UK) for Mayko Lee’s birthday jam, and as well as the Bristol crew putting on a sweet jam for Mayko Lee, they dropped a tight edit a few days after the event, and we caught up with Josh to see what work went into putting the day on! Hit the bibliography if you missed this one, or refresh the mind maybe.
October 17th was another great day for flatland! Any footage of Steve Mulder is awesome, multiple hanggliders are relatively unheard of in this day in age of peg to peg boomerangs, Mulder completely smashed it with 5 brakeless! To my knowledge thats a record, unless he’s beat it himself? Steve?
Luis Elias Benavides published Part 1 of his Radio interview with flatland legend, Chase Gouin, they discussed his recovery with fungal/mould illness, how he got into riding, his passion for flatland riding, of particular interest to me was the question about judging, where he talks about variety, trickiontary, originality. So much more. Great interview!
I told you the 17th was a good day, and Alex Jumelin teamed up with Fat Tony to bring you a welcome to freegun edit, filmed in Las Vegas, whilst Alex was in town for the Nora Cup ceremony.
What a year for Jim McKay, fast becoming one of the best filmers in the game, another Must Watch from the pre jam for the Texas Toast at the infamous OG spot, such an amazing vibe comes across watching this edit.
Three days later and another great day for flatland edits. What I especially liked about this day was the variety of different types of edits coming in, as you will see if you go back and watch these.
Martti Kuoppa back on a bike! A great day if nothing else, and just messing around with a mega spin full whopper to mega spin decade out! That was enough for me, but the day continued! Jeff Scheer released a really good edit full of different techniques I hadn’t seen in years, but really brought a smile to my face seeing this edit! And holy shit, Sietse Van Berkel in the second half of the year seemed to just elevate to monster status riding wise, absolutely smashing it in his September 2012 edit, great style and tricks from this shredder from Holland. Big future for this guy! Anthony Buglio rounded up a cracking day with a brilliant show from the Texas Toast, really digging the shows isolated to one topic, whether interview or contest, on this occasion, great interviews and riding footage! Top marks FlatWebTV!
On October 22nd, Mr Hyper, Dez Maarsen dropped a sick downside whip to rollback rolled clip! A day later, Chase Gouin Part 2 of his radio interview with Luis Elias discussing his health, signature frame, taking part in contests, favourite riders, suggestions to beginners, and influence of flatland in his life. Definitely worth going back and listening to both interviews.
As the month started winding down, surprise surprise the edits did not! Jim McKay dropped a great short edit with Holland’s Michael Van der Kroft,who went down a similar route to Alex Jumelin with his riding, not touching the seat. It will be interesting to see in 2013, what he gets up to!
Remember the name, Kensuke Hamai! His riding is a mix of Raphael Chiquet, and Yohei Uchino, killer back wheel flow! Big future for this guy if he keeps shredding like he did in 2012! On the same day, Scott Powell released a dope edit entitled “Let the bikes in”, even though it was old footage, I was still amazed at the double foot jam combo in this one! Timeless. Over in Spain, Adam Kun won the MiraFlow contest in Sevilla!
We ended the month stoked on two edits, from Charles Paty and that name again, Adam Kun! I can already hear people saying, oh yeah that edit! Charles Paty killed it in his Superb frames testing edit, killer nose manual combos. On a different tip, Adam teamed up with the Hungarian bank, to film one of the most professional looking edits yet. Both equally awesome edits for very different reasons! A great end to yet another great month!
Now you would think, November.. The weather starts turning bad, nights drawing in, less edits! Wrong! November started like it was the middle of summer in terms of content. I remember thinking wow, this is non stop work! Four amazing edits dropped from the Texas Toast, Dax Wolford, Pete Brandt, and Guelo and Moya, hit the bibliography to watch throughout them.
A few days later, Dax was back with a dope triple turbine edit. York Uno released a really nice edit with “Doke in Kobe”. Joris Bretagnolles won the Vibration Urbaines contest in France. And Jim McKay released “A tips on making better flatland edits” article from TCU, firstly good news the TCU are finally covering flatland, and also good it was someone who knows what they are talking about! Lot of helpful tips to consider on this topic, as we of course flatlanders not film makers.
There then seemed to be a lil’ down time for the first time I can recall all year, of 5-6 days of chilled edits. Then on the 11th, things started to fire up again! Dane Beardsley enjoyed a great year, and took a well deserved first place at the Trans jam in Greenville. Anthony Brogden was spitting feather son the mic during Dane’s run! Go back and watch his second run for one hell of an incredible back wheel line.
Pete Brandt had numerous dope edits throughout the year, but this “Clocktower tales” edit really stood out for me. An inspiration to us all, the man is on it more than ever!
It didn’t seem like Jim McKay was far out of the limelight this year, and on the 12th he released the “Must Watch” edit from Texas Toast. On the same day, Fat Tony released the 2013 flatland calendar with Dane Beardsley on the cover, and Team Pralex on the back. Thanks to fat we had a couple of exclusives on the calendar behind the scenes, hit the bibliography for the juice if you missed these.
S&M made some big statements of intent this year, not only Chad blowing up and dropping one of the best edits. But Peter Olsen delivered a hammer part for us all to drool over, this edit swept across every flatland and bmx website that knew what was up that day, and on repeat for days to come. As it turns out arguably the top 3 edits of the year, were all from S&M riders! Like I said, a real big statement!!
4 days later was all about Matthias Dandois! On this day he won the Com’in Lyon contest and released a really well produced and thought out whiplash how to, that set the standard for how-tos in this digital era. Amazing quality and insight into the trick!
As November wound down as I busy getting articles ready to celebrate 4 years of Flatmatters! Rather than just an edit this year, I wanted to have exclusive content dropping all week to celebrate, and we featured during that week, two part rider perspective on 2012, a interview with the master of the foot jam decade, John Yull, a two part huge interview with Viki Gomez! We announced our media partnership with BMX Union, The Merged, Freecoaster.com, and Can I Dig it? And also during that time Alex Jumelin had a dope TCU interview, Sietse Van Berkel continued his amazing year with another banging clip.
As we rolled into the last month of the year. A few sponsorship chains were happening, firstly Yohei Uchino signed for Red Bull, and Matthias Dandois quit Ares Bykes.
On December 6th besides the part 2 of the rider perspective article dropping, Kenshiro released a sick quad decade clip, that had many of us talking! Most notably, Flat Web Tv held their 2012 awards show, and I was truly honoured to be considered for the lifetime achievement award, let alone to take the award. Watch the show above to see who else won what, if you missed it!
Now we don’t see a great deal of Brian Tunney, but when we do it is always a treat, classic rolling style, and his edit on December 7th was a Must Watch! Also on this day, the KOG organisers released an amazing expert class edit, and Sergio Balu from Brazil “amazed us! Sorry couldn’t resist, in reference to title before you ask!
December 8th was another good day for edits and even though it was towards the need of the year, the edits and sheer volume didn’t slow down hardly at all. One of the things I will take most from the year would be that fact alone, pretty amazing when you think about it. Anyway, on this day, it was great to see Catfish release a “world-wide” that reflected his travels, different cultures, wild partying and the odd amazing flatland move here and there. Thats a good watch! Com’in Lyon also released a tight edit from their contest. And over in Tokyo, Yohei Uchino narrowly beat Viki Gomez for the top spot at the G Shock Real Toughness event.
On December 12th, the news that Same Thing Daily 3 was in the works dropped. Sietse Van Berkel dropped a clip in 0 Celsuis, Ciaran Perry released some amazing old footage of himself from 2008, and Tyler Gilliard’s Welcome to FreeGun edit dropped, hopefully we will see more from this guy this year!
After much speculation, the news dropped that Matthias Dandois was riding for Haro Bikes! And would be riding Dennis Enerson’s signature SD frame. In a random bit of news related to this, I just got word today from hare manager, Colin McKay that his Welcome to Haro edit will be dropping anyway! So hold tight!
December 17th was a great day for flatland, both Sam Foakes and Matthias Dandois released sick edits, that reminded me of old times those two going head to head, anyone else notice these guys seem to have a habit of releasing edits on the same date. Also on this day, Scott O”brine put down the mic, and let us see him shred in New Orleans, dope vibes from the City Park riding spot!
On December 23rd, Adam Kun released a Must Watch edit from his last session of 2012! And whilst many of us were occupied with Christmas. In japan, the KOG/WC Finals were going down, for me it was a shame that due to the scheduling of this event, no one from outside of japan was there. It kind of diminishes all their hard work thats gone on in previous rounds. Nevertheless as we all know, the riding at the final event of the year was absolutely mind-blowing, with Hotoke taking the win, Yohei Uchino taking the World Circuit, could Dominik Nekolny have taken it? We’ll never know. And Moto Sasaki finished 3rd with a dope 1 minute long combo that on any other day would be enough. Go back and watch this edit again! Pure fire!!
Things slow down on Christmas day? Hell no! On Christmas day Alex Jumelin and Jim McKay released “The style the life” with some of AJ’s best riding to date! And FlatWebTV interviewed Chad Johnston and Peter Olsen who both won awards respectively.
On Boxing day, the KOG edits were in full flow, and ESPn released a really dope interview with Simon O’Brien. early stoked to see more of SOB shredding in 2013!
On December 28th we broke the news, that James White as on S&M! And fittingly the year ended with James White teaming up with james smith to bring you his Welcome to S&M edit! Not to forget on the same day a dope flashback edit from Waldemar Fatkin, expect big things from this stylecat this year.
And that as they say is a wrap! What an incredible year that I hope I’ve done some justice if you can be bothered to read through it all! I hope more than anything that this article in its three parts acts more of an archive that you can refer to! Big respect to every flatlander on the planet that has brought content to all of us worldwide, and kept the scene moving forward! 2013 will have a hell of a job trying to top that!