DVD Reviews

Modern Love

I peeped the trailer for Modern Love a while ago and knew that it was something special – One of the tricks featured in the promo even got pipped as Mooove (Crolly and Ferens)!

Anyway, fast forward 6 months and copies of this Canadian video are few and far between, so Europe doesn’t really get a look in. Damn…

That is until I stumbled across a wicked website repping all good skate things Canadian: Thanks to this treasure chest of sick footage North of the border, a link was found for the illicit download of Modern Love. Finally! Sometimes you’ve got to thank the internet for spreading the love…

The line-up for this feature is as follows: Mike McDermott, Aaron Rosenblatt, Mike McCourt, Mick Lemoine, Kenny Haralson, Jeremy Gelfant, Paul Spencer, Jason Crolly, Rod Ferens and Travis Stenger. Only a couple of those names probably mean anything to non-Canadians but trust me they are all part of the elite talent the country has to offer.

The sweetest thing about this video which make it a viewing pleasure is the editing technique filmer Ryan McGuigan has used. Ryan interlaces the footage with Black and White show reels, snippets of cult movies and other comedy shows, but more importantly Ryan has under stood the importance of the past. Each skater has at least one trick featured that was filmed on an old Hi-8 dad-cam back in the day, and this gives Modern Love a lot more depth than your average skate tape. Plus, some of the tricks brought back from the past are absolutely valid by today’s standards of gnarliness and tech.

The soundtrack is wicked too: Instead of opting for a Hip-Hop heavy backdrop, Ryan has sourced the beats and come up with the tracks that originated the urban anthems. Do you remember when Wu Tang dropped that Shaolin Soul? Well Ryan does.

Without going into too much detail about who does what where, when and why? I’ll focus on a couple of the riders; For starters Mike McDermott who opens the video and demonstrates his incredible manual skills. Mike has recently been added to the all new Habitat International team, so you know he’s got the flavour. Next is Jason Crolly who embodies the word ‘burly’ like it was his middle name. Good, hard, solid skating from this powerhouse.

Another solid skater, but verging on the tech side of things is Rod Ferens. Rod obviously enjoys samples and scratches more than slam dancing and stadium rock, but nonetheless his staunch build doesn’t half skate fast! Rod eats ledges for breakfast and threads sick street lines like a Timbaland laces the beats.

Finally, let me introduce you to Travis Stenger. You might recognize this name, and if you don’t then wake the fuck up! Travis is bolts, picture perfect street tech and ballistic pop. Looking at his attire, it looks like Travis has turned heads at one of the most stylish skate camps out there (name withheld to avoid free publicity). Kick flip backside tailslide frontside shove-it out? On a waist high ledge..? Switch backside flip a proper sized bench like it was a walk in the park..? Yep, Travis is good.

If you see Modern Love in a skateshop – buy it! This is definitely up there in the top three skatevideos to drop over the last year. Like MC Hammer said: “You can’t touch this!”

Ralph Lloyd-Davis
13th December 2006