Probably The Chillest D.I.Y. Spot in the World — Yume Farm in Narita, Japan

April 24th, 2015 | 4:51 am | Features & Interviews | 6 Comments

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Japanese culture is well known for its attention to detail. They seem to master everything they pursue, sometimes even surpassing original versions of things indigenous to other places. Why else do Americans fly to Japan, convert dollars to yen, and spend money on superior Japanese versions of traditionally American products? So in hindsight, it shouldn’t have come as a surprise to learn that the most impressive D.I.Y. spot I’ve ever seen — save Burnside, FDR and places that have been around for twenty-plus years — was in Japan.

There is minimal English information about Yume Farm on the internet. It is an actual farm and campsite, serving as a hour-away escape from Tokyo life for anyone willing to make the drive. The skatepark though — …doesn’t make a lot of sense. It’s a smooth island of concrete in the middle of the woods. It sits on a mellow slope and there is no sign that it was ever a building foundation. The only story behind how it came to exist was “three years ago, the park gave it to the skaters and said they could build whatever they want on it.” The people who brought us here had last skated it three months prior, and in that time, the entire tall transition section got built.

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Five Favorite Parts With Bill Strobeck

April 22nd, 2015 | 9:56 am | Features & Interviews | 6 Comments

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Photo by Curtis Buchanan

Noticing a trend in these where the transcript word count from filmers/editors is about triple that of the skater ones. So while everyone is proclaiming Propeller to be “the last EVER full-length company video,” remember that there are still tons of guys putting a lot of thought into the nuts and bolts of bringing skate videos to your screen ;)

The latest installment comes from “cherry” creator, Bill Strobeck.

We’re Chilling Until We’re Not

April 20th, 2015 | 9:52 am | Daily News | 9 Comments

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Pete Thompson / @peetigga is the best skate photography Instagram going right now. Tons of unseen late nineties and early 2000s shots with many familiar faces. Stevie @ SF’s Third and Townsend bump from that archive ;)

An hour-long skate nerdery-laden conversation with Michael Carroll.

Life is goodie.

Diamond Days #80. That curb next to the Williamsburg Bridge is the new hot spot, huh? I dunno man, I’ve been away :(

“Resurgent bowls, abrupt transitions and even the vert ramp seem to have splintered handrail skating into restless and nomadic tribes, including displaced wallriders, wall-rejecting against-the-grainers, deep-crouching over-the-toppers, body varialing rewinders and a Mariano-bred stripe of small-bar uber-tech.” Boil the Ocean on handrail skating’s midlife crisis.

An interview with @Koolmoeleo, the guy who-more-or-less took the reigns from Chromeball as the leading skateboard magazine scanner on the internet.

Quadruples down the Stuyvesant Town rail.

Bronx-heavy clip with a Watermelons cameo and avant garde pants supervision.

Bobshirt interviewed Jahmal. (Chill shot of Jahmal in the Thompson archive, btw.)

New mini video from Cooper Winterson with a lot of still snowy streets, Welcome boards, and cutty New York spots that pretty much nobody else skates.

An unexpectedly high volume of Londoners are good at kicklip backside noseblunts.

Westgate ollies over a car and wants you to buy trees.

Congratulations to the city and skateboarders of Montreal on the full legalization of skating at Peace Park. “You have to be mentally strong to skate Peace Park.”

Meanwhile, in New York. Whatever, see you this summer, Europe.

So the diamond-plate bank on Grand and Centre Streets that everyone gets stuck at for way too long at least once every half year is a wrap.

Derrick Rose Pulls Off Perfect 720 At Local Skate Park.

QS Sports Desk Play of the Week: This post-playoff elimination Russell Westbrook YouTube mix with 60 views. It’s just not fair man :(

Quote of the Week: “I missed my flight one time, so I made myself take the A train back home from JFK as punishment.” — Sweet Waste

Though The Barter 6 has dominated the majority of rap-related conversation this past weekend, allow us to remind you that the QS Rap Desk’s favorite happy rap group has a new one over on Live Mixtapes. Travie’s had a quiet past twelve months, and it’s sad they weren’t allotted a Rae Sremmurd-esque super producer co-sign in like ~2010, but they’re still the go-to when you get sick of rappers telling you they’re gonna shoot you in their Alexander Wang gear. Praise be to happy rap music :)

An Interview With Budapest’s Rios Crew

April 17th, 2015 | 4:55 am | Features & Interviews | 7 Comments

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There aren’t many videos coming out today that don’t remind you of twenty other videos that came out today. Skaters love to think they’re special ‘n shit, but fall back on formulas just like Hollywood. (Currently kicking an idea around the editor’s desk where we rank the Bronze knock-offs the way NY Mag ranked the Taken rip-offs.)

Last year’s Toló video was something different. Not that it didn’t have it’s influences — the QS post for it made a tongue-in-cheek comparison to New Jersey vids — but it didn’t look like anything else being thrown out on the internet at that time or time since. It helped that it came from a secluded (by skate industry standards) former Soviet-bloc country known as Hungary, via the “Rios Crew.” Their subsequent projects have been frequent and just as fun to watch. They’re on the shortlist of videos left in Hella Clips/IG-era skateboarding that are fairly certain to earn repeat viewings.

These guys speak varying levels of English. Instead of doing a massive group interview, we had the dudes with the best command of the English language mold the crew’s answers into one unifying response. Most of the names wouldn’t make individual sense to you anyway, so here is an interview with Hungary’s Rios “Crew.”

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What is the skate scene in Hungary like? Is Budapest the capital for it?

The skate scene is just as colorful as in the States, but with less skaters. The total population of Hungary is around 8.5 million, which is the same number of people you have in New York. There are maybe a thousand skaters in Budapest and let’s say another thousand spread throughout the country.

Skateboarding has been around in Budapest since the early eighties, but Hungary was still a communist country until 1989, so the first shop and park didn’t open until about 1991. Before that, you had to get gear from western countries. There are stories about guys who were selling H-street boards and other stuff before the first shop opened. There were skaters around back then, but it was never a common thing. The scene got quite heavy in the nineties and 2000s. We even had names like Rodney Mullen, Ed Templeton and Ethan Fowler in Budapest giving demos around in those years.

Every generation had a different central spot and shop. Our generation’s central spot was a square that was surprisingly built for skating around 2003, but after an accident, skating got banned there and it turned into a typical shitty pre-fab skatepark. It’s in the total center of the city and always crowded. We don’t go there.

We always meet at our D.I.Y. spot, Rió.

Huf’s Favorite Photos

April 15th, 2015 | 5:20 am | Features & Interviews | 7 Comments

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If you run a New York-based skate website for nearly ten years, it’d make sense to get Keith Hufnagel onboard for something along the line. Except there isn’t a ton of unchartered territory for an interview after the Epicly Later’d series or anything of that sort. Huf already had a Chromeball guest post, and this is not much more than a geographically constrained bite of that idea.

There aren’t a ton of proper “parts” from when Huf and that generation of skaters were growing up skating in New York, but a bunch of memorable photos. Here are Keith Hufnagel’s favorite New York skate photos, with a bit of commentary on each one.