STYLE & SUBSTANCE

VINNYPONTE

There’s few topics that recur on this blog as much as skaters skating in non-skate footwear. Workboots were covered here a while ago and while every skate brand seems to be peddling a runner-style shoe as an off-board comfort option, that’s a copout. I’m all about the pick of big basketball shoes (which, in turn, inspired plenty of releases from the likes of DC) being worn as a true demonstration of no fucks given, with their hefty price tags and barely-there boardfeel amplifying the sense of show(shoe?)manship. Keenan and Harold deserve their place in the hall of footwear fame, as does Gino, but without getting all Quartersnacks-lite (because they do this kind of thing way better), I don’t see enough credit for Vinny Ponte‘s pick of the oft-dismissed but genuinely incredible Air Jordan XI Low IE (International Exclusive) in the Zoo York Mixtape (he wasn’t alone in that selection of shoe either) or Brad Johnson in Western Edition videos from the early 2000s rocking the Retro+ Jordan XIs (as in the real deal with the patent toe), Vs with the debut of the heel Jumpman and, like Mr. Iannuci, a pair of AF1s (albeit Lows rather than the Mid). Ponte and Johnson deserve their place in the glorious history of Jordans worn for skate that goes way beyond Mountain or Gonz’s reasons for wear and it’s a joy to see sacred shoes being annihilated. I want to see a book of non-skate shoes being worn for skate — remember when the budget Nike GTS court shoe had a moment there? If someone had broken out the Air Seinfeld cast and crew GTS for a session, I would’ve caught the holy ghost.

BRADJOHNSON

I’m a keen enthusiast when it comes to movies that are style way above substance and Walter Hill’s Streets of Fire is an overblown, occasionally miscast masterpiece of that genre that boldly elects to create its place in time — neon 1980s excess and 1950s ducktail hair for an anachronistic rock and roll fable that’s part thriller, part musical — flick knives, Willem Defoe being weird, exploding cars, soul groups, Jim Steinman, trenchcoats, near lawlessness, Warriors-style heavily choreographed dust-ups, the beginning of my lifetime crush on Diane Lane, Lee Ving from Fear…everything collides to create a film that’s far too well-executed to be a folly. Hill gets the Peckinpah comparison, but I can’t imagine Sam creating something like this. They really, really don’t make things like this any more and its failure at the box office in 1984 probably has something to do with that. Streets of Fire gets a Blu-ray outing this month in the UK and they’ve brought back the original poster art too as well as compiling an 80-minute documentary specially for the release. If ever a film deserved Blu-ray, it’s this one.

STREETSOFFIREbluray

I have to interview people occasionally and while frequency has made me immune to my idiotic voice, more often than not, the constant uncertainty of “like” breaking up my questions and fawning, obvious questions make me want to punch myself in the temple. The only solution to bad interview technique is to study the masters, and while the Playboy interview books are good, Jan Kedves’ collection of interviews with the likes of Jurgen Teller, Rick Owens, Raf Simons, Diane Pernet and Bruce Weber for a selection of magazines (Kedves was former editor of Spex) are compiled for Talking Fashion and are a masterclass in interrogation as an artform, asking intelligent, well-researched questions and getting some incredible insight as a result. This guy goes into the meeting equipped, but there’s a fluidity to his follow-ups and conversational skills too. Some things can be learnt and other things are just innate, but there’s plenty of lessons in the pages of this book.

TALKINGFASHION

2 thoughts on “STYLE & SUBSTANCE

  1. this made me search out the old wilson pro staffs that seemed to be big in the midwest US in the mid 90s, probably about the same time i saw a lot of heads in the GTS’s.

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