éS Sal 20 shoe review

es_sal20_23_sal_barbier_shoe_skate-new

Had a taste of shoe heaven yet this year? If not, you’re about to find some. The history of the original Sal 23 started as the very first éS shoe when they launched back in 1995 – at the time it was a bona fide classic, the first pro skate shoe for Sal Barbier that spread like wildfire throughout the scene that was not only admired for its fashion statement, the functionality of the shoe was 100% built for skateboarding by skateboarders.

This period was golden. Skateboarding was raw, the real underground. None of Michael Jordan’s people were anywhere near our scene at the time, although said sports pro did share the same basketball number with Sal – the 23, a number that most 90s skaters will never forget due to this shoe. This new re-issue sees his infamous number switched to 20, paying homage to éS celebrating a sterling 20 strong years in the skater owned shoe game. Only a hardcore few will want their 23 back, but the double decade will do nicely.

es_sal20_23_sal_barbier_shoe_skate-new

Rightful big ups to éS for their achievements aside, let’s go back to functionality, because it’s rare these days for any skate shoe company to issue a shoe that has an ollie patch. Most companies want you to skate every day so that your Mum has to buy you a new pair and replace them fast – it’s a sucker marketing strategy, sneaky too. Barbier and the dudes at Sole Tech wanted a shoe that lasted. It’s a beautiful touch and one that you will appreciate when you slip these on and start pushing.

“I wanted a rubber piece on the side so it wouldn’t rip up. I kind of liked that, because I don’t always like wearing ’em when they’re brand new.” explains Sal in a previous interview. “By the time most skate shoes break in, you have to get a new pair because they’re all ripped up. I worked on the design of the whole shoe, the sole, the logo, everything, around 1994-95.”

es-shoes_quote

We had a delivery of the Sal 20 here recently and have spent 3 weeks in them now. The first obvious observation is that they are now made thinner than the OGs (thankfully), but back then everything in skateboarding was wide – apart from wheels. They are comfy too. None of this waiting for the shoe to be ready for a sesh, these are lit straight out of the box. I personally like to stick the laces behind the tongue allowing the logo to represent, like a number plate. Surrounded by smooth suede with perforation holes in front of the first lace, these are super simple, but perfectly efficient for street or mini ramp skating.

All you need to know is that these are 100% skateboarding. éS have brought a classic back from their wonderful archives and re-issued them in style. You need a pair in your life. Support skater owned brands so the next wave of hard working skaters can get what they deserve.

It’s worth noting that these come up a little small, so I opted for a half size up and they were perfect. Find them in your local skate shop this month in three colourways.

es_sal20_23_sal_barbier_shoe_skate-new

es_sal20_23_sal_barbier_shoe_skate-new

es_sal20_23_sal_barbier_shoe_skate-new

John DeMar’s Solo Part

Photo by Matt Bublitz

john_demar_matt_bublitz

Making music and skateboarding are two of the finest forms of fun on this shit-filled planet. John DeMar hit the studio for his own part that does more than kick out the jams, and at fast pace too, filmed by Bublitz, Stewart and Houghton. Sick part.

More from TWS this month too:

Flip Skateboards UK Demo, London

The last time Flip came to town back in 2008, some may remember that online cynics stated that their team of ‘little kids’ were never going to compete with the big boys. Here we are five years later and guess who is dominating every contest worldwide and has taken X-Games, Tampa Am and even the cherished prize of all that is Skater of the Year amongst others? Never, ever underestimate Flip Skateboards. They are Britain’s flagship skate co – the original, the most forward thinking, and the very best.

flipdemolondon2013_crossfireThis demo was announced only 2 weeks before they landed at Heathrow. David Gonzalez and Curren Caples could not be present due to family unforeseen commitments and they are both in our thoughts today as family alays comes first. As Flip take this family aspect of life so seriously, they pulled out every stop to make this demo as good as it could be for you without two of their finest team riders. With Ben Nordberg dislocating his elbow in the week proceeding the demo too (get well soon mate), demo monster Greyson Fletcher flew into London with very little notice as cover. He had just spent time in Europe smashing everything he skated to pieces, including taking the prestigious first place spot at the Prado Bowl in Marseille last week, and had flown back to California. All options were looked into to make ammends for these changes in the week leading up to this demo, so hats off to all involved for making a mammoth effort to appease the visitors who attended this one. I cannot express how much effort went into this.

As Alec Majerus was clearing customs at 4.30pm, a crowd was forming at BaySixty6. It’s the hottest day of the year by far with the temperature hitting 29/30′. BBQ smoke filled the skies all over the city, skate sessions turned into lazy drinking sessions and those who turned up to welcome this crew should be highly commended.

The legendary Arto Saari was in the mix and skating on British soil for the first time in years, alongside the masterful Louie Lopez whose trick ratio is filling the bag these days. His Minnesotan friend Majerus showed why he took Tampa with ease last year, and Fletcher, well, you have to see this bloke to believe. He flies like an eagle with absolutely no fear of anything in front of him. Shouts to upcoming UK ripper Charlie Birch too who was invited to join this crew today and once again impressed all.

Overall it was a roaster and these beautiful photos from Maksim Kalanep tell the story of Flip’s visit alongside Ryan Gray’s swift footage from Sidewalk. Many thanks to Ian and all at Flip, all of the Bay66 staff, Ben Powell for mic action, and all who spread the word for us in short notice on this exclusive London event.

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_ukdemo_baysixty6

crossfire_flip_skateboards_ukdemo_baysixty6

crossfire_flip_skateboards_ukdemo_baysixty6

crossfire_flip_skateboards_ukdemo_baysixty6

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

crossfire_flip_skateboards_uk_demo_bay66

chooseskateboarding

Flip Skateboards UK Demo 2013

We are proud to announce that Crossfire will host an exclusive UK demo for the Flip Skateboards team at Bay Sixty 6 skate park in London on the evening of Saturday 6th July in association with Mob Grip, Sidewalk Magazine and Pixels.

The demo will start at 5.30pm and run until 9pm with Arto Saari, Louie Lopez, Curren Caples, Ben Nordberg and Alec Majerus in attendance. Join the Facebook event page here.

As this is the only UK demo from the Flip team, plan well in advance and arrange your travel and accommodation now if necessary. The address is 66-67 Acklam Rd, London, W10 5YU

We will update you on additional information on this page in the build up to the event. Spread the good word by liking this page and get hyped on Flip coming home!

flip_skateboards_ukdemo_london_2013_crossfire_baysixty6

etnies presents: Ryan Sheckler’s 15 years strong

ryansheckler_skateboarder

In an age where mainstream brands outside of skateboarding have come in and flexed muscles with large wads of cash with no scene history whatsoever, you have to admire the loyalty that Ryan Sheckler has shown to etnies. Fifteen years has gone by since he joined the brand and he is still one of the most consistent performers on a skateboard out there.

That loyalty is a rare sight in this corporately challenged landscape, especially in a recession, but I guess when you are dealing with a company that is 25 years young, and run by skaters who get out of bed for the right reasons everyday, it’s worth pledging your allegiance for. Take note.

So here it is, UK skate videographer Mike Manzoori and etnies have rolled out a tribute video looking back at those 15 years of service with Oliver Barton, Ricki Bedenbaugh, Atiba Jefferson, Manzoori himself and Arto Saari. Enjoy.

etnies Presents: Ryan Sheckler’s Fifteen Years Strong from etnies on Vimeo.

Grey Area

Words: Guy Jones

greyarea_dvdsleeveFor those of you unaware, ‘Grey Area‘ is a delicious visual skateboard buffet, highlighting the often over-looked Polish scene. I recommend the purchase of this dvd for a number of reasons: Firstly because of the rare spots, which means the lines (which are vast) are fresh and exciting. Secondly, it comes with a top soundtrack and thirdly the filming and editing is seriously crisp. You have to congratulate Kuba Kaczmarczyk and Paweł Piotr Przybył who were behind this project as this production is a must see.

When you’re watching rhythmic lines and subjects going fast as fuck, people often don’t notice the filming qualities unless they’re captured terribly. Look out for the styles of recording throughout, as they are often as impressive as the actual content, not to mention the actual aesthetic which is overdosing in dope. The skate skillin’ is complimented with various filler shots namely of wildlife, soldiers and other items of interest and all importantly, not overdone. There’s an impeccable balance.

Some of the skaters that feature in this include Michał Juraś, Krzysiek Poskrobko, Danijel Stankovic, the Polar team and a solid bulk of the Polish and Swedish scene, who are criminally underexposed. The gnar destroyers who are present in this flick make incredible use of the abundance of derelict and raw surroundings. Poland has some beautifully unique architecture which creates lines aplenty. As a result the lads make good use of almost anything in sight and do it extremely well. This is particularly pertinent to my man Michał Juraś, who not only holds down a full part but features in various montages throughout raising his footage count to near on 10 minutes. Some of the spots he skates are barely spots and that makes the appreciation bar peak. True player!

Michał Juraś with one of the scariest looking ollie’s of all time in Wrocław. Ph: Kuba Bączkowski

Michał Juraś_byKuba Bączkowskie

The sections are laid out in such a way that it’s mandatory to watch the whole video rather than skipping sections and each one highlights something fabulous. There’s an abundance of montages including a brief history of the DIY struggles and accomplishments, ‘Back to the 90’s’ and ‘Fun’. The latter alone should entice anyone viewing this review right now to pick up a copy of this film. The content fully justifies the anticipation.

Krzysiek Poskrobko pops a fatty. Ph: Kuba Baczkowski

KACZMARCZYK_FILMING_byKuba Baczkowski

The soundtrack is a banger, ranging from psychedelic rock, raw 90’s hip hop, 60’s sun-hunting sounds and other sub-genres that get you even more hyped on the incredible skating that ensues. Watch the trailer if you need more persuasion, then go out and buy this keeper of a scene video to see some of the most authentic, genuine scenes in Europe. Grey Area I salute you. Ziiiiiing Peaaaace!

Grey Area is available now at various UK skate shops, hunt one out today.

“Grey Area” The Skateboard Movie / The Trailer from Grey Area Video on Vimeo.