An Interview With Budapest’s Rios Crew

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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.

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First Post of 2015

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The Grand Central of the jet age.” Photo via Paul Young.

Happy New Year. Last week was a wash. Not much happened, nor did a lot of #hot #new #content appear on the skateboard internet. If you want to catch up on stuff you missed in 2014, beyond the standard year-end sources, check Slam City Skates’ list of favorite parts from British skateboarders of note or your “favourite” European skateboarder’s “favourites” from the year.

Discovering how fun and unrefined Hungarian skateboarding looks was one of our “favourite” developments of 2014, so here’s the new one from Budapest’s Rios Crew.

This is cool, but where’s the footage of the Trahan Washington Square kickflip?

ConEd Banks seems like a horrible place to spend prolonged time at during a summer (or fall) trip to New York. Three Up Three Down is a great place for a nap though.

Sean Malto, on the struggle of only being romantically admired by 15-year-old girls.

Ripped Laces’ annual list of the year’s best skate shoes. No Supreme Foams?

Even though you’d wind end up sharing it with a bunch recently divorced, “skating past a mid-life crisis” art directors, they should build one of these in Central Park.

Like most things, uptown is a lot more fun in the summertime. Cool kickflip, btw.

Unswayed by the fact that no storied skate company has ever come back from the dead to come close to its glory days, Alien Workshop announced yesterday that it will be joining Habitat under the Tum Yeto umbrella. Seagullllllssssss…

Rob Mathieson may be the quietest British person I know. Here’s a video of him skating around Boston and New York for Krooked’s U.K. division.

The crew behind the Tuesday vid got the urge to re-do the entire video, rendering it Tuesday-free as an attempt to distance itself from that day’s popularity spurt.

Has Bieber been channeling The Muska all along?

A compendium of the tricks that have gone down the Clipper Ledge, likely 2014’s “Spot of the Year,” in .gif form. Clipper #listicles r mad hot yo.

I watched that movie The Notebook. You ever watch that?” — Mike Tyson

QS Sports Desk Play of the Week: Nick Young is the frontrunner for the Sports Desk’s S.O.T.Y. Also, people on Twitter are already calling this the dunk of the year.

Quote of the Week:

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If you’re curious as to where we were at before this year (or bored…yeah, you’re probably bored), here are the first posts from 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014.

Noooooooooo Juice

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No, not the Juiceman.

Soooo, we made a run of those Tompkins Square sweatshirts from earlier this fall as hoodys for Japan. There were a few leftovers that didn’t get promoed out, and you can scoop what remains in the webstore now. Hurry!

Unequivocally the worst rap song ever recorded.

The new Alltimers boards are chill.

SMLTalk came through with an abbreviated history of the plus-size skateboarder, though oddly left out second-and-third career arc Fred Gall. His Inhabitants section is sorta the epitome of heavy-set skateboarding, isn’t it?

We noticed earlier this year that Hungary might be the European-equivalent of New Jersey, at least from a skateboarding standpoint. Well, if you were into Toló, you’ll get a kick out of Fakopó, a new 27-minute video of Budapest-based crust.

Corey Rubin sighting in Johnny Wilson’s latest video blog!

Kalis is the best. Not only is he indifferent to the today’s prefered practice of ambidextrous pushing, he rejects the term “switch mongo” altogether. If Kalis and Gino aren’t learning to push with their opposite foot, why should you?

Halloween-themed skate clips all tend to blend together at this point, but this Muska-themed one via the Black Ninja is cool if you grew up on Fulfill the Dream.

New quick 4-5-6 clip from Bolts Hardware and Curt Daley #eggs.

Some old fashioned “Who is Jake Johnson going to ride for?”-speculation + thoughts on the modern skater’s newfound ability to sustain relevance without a board sponsor.

“I was told in 1996 by Frank Messman, the then CEO of World Industries, that the industry standard rate for a graphic topped out at 500 bucks. Nearly 20 years later it’s still that amount or less—even by half from what I’ve recently been heard from one manufacturer—which may make this the worst profession in which to try and earn a living.” Chris Nieratko interviews Sean Cliver about the unfortunate plight of making a living off skateboard graphics. (Ginko reissued Disposable, btw. When are we gonna see a reissue of the Evan Hecox book? $694 for a used copy is a bit out of budget.)

Ride has a cool history lesson on short-lived “cult” companies from the nineties e.g. American Dream, FIT, 60/40, Illumanti and a handful of others.

Josh Stewart uploaded a good quality version of the New York, Boston and Philly section from the original Static video on the occasion of the video’s fifteen-year anniversary. Tony Montgomery was really sick, huh?

Some ten-plus-year-old footage of Kalis, Sabback, Puleo, etc.

Something for the English majors: “There is something untranslatable about skating’s vocabulary, something not-quite-repeatable about a particular trick landed a certain way, like a poetic line clicking into place in that ineffable way lines sometimes do on first reading.”

QS Sports Desk Play of the Week: Steph.

Quote of the Week: “I’m not good anymore.” — Keith Denley

Not sure how long ago this happened, but recently found out that the Bridgeport ledges got knobbed. R.I.P. to the best ledge spot within a 70-mile radius of New York City that you actually had a chance of skating :(

Hungary is Apparently A Lot Like New Jersey

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Without even having visited many of them, it’s easy to pinpoint most European countries’ contributions to the fabric of skateboarding: Spain and France are thinktanks of EuroTech™, England somehow produces incredible skateboarders despite miraculous climate and spot-related odds, Scandinavians are tall, love wet cement and routinely rewatch Eastern Exposure, as do Belgians and the Dutch (+ Youness…Weiger…), Italians are the byproducts of the best marble on earth, Germans are a hodgepodge of all the above, and everything east of Austria, whose skaters are benefactors of modern architecture’s greatest unintentional skatepark, is pretty much just Russia. Who knows what goes on there…

If there was some hypothetical secret level of New Jersey crust that gets unlocked when you do a trick on the biggest piece of shit that even Fred Gall backed down from, it probably looks like the spots in Toló, a new video out of Budapest. 1) These Hungarians definitely watch the same Quim Cardona parts before skating as the In Crust We Trust dudes. 2) Their entire video is built around 5050 / cool ollie / 180 / wallride-heavy trick repertoires, because these spots look way too harsh to attempt anything close to technical on. 3) They even embrace the “scum” title, much like a prominent Garden State media institution. Hungary = New Jersey of Europe, at least as far as skateboarding is concerned?

The word “raw” gets overused these days, but it’s hard to think of something as awesomely unrefined as this video.

The only real criticism is that they should have better timed the release of Toló alongside that two-week period when “normcore” was the internet’s buzzword, as this vid has the most fashion indifferent wardrobe supervision ever.