Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Random Teams #4: New Balance Numeric

New Balance's entry into skateboarding may have been frowned upon by the core supporters, but you can't argue the intrigue that their one-of-a-kind team creates. Giving PJ Ladd a shoe sponsor after his monumental time at DC and eS was some of the biggest news in a while for this legend. Then getting Levi Brown, Arto Saari, and Tom Karangelov next, all under the management of John Rattray himself settled NB in skateboarding for the team alone. (The shoes do look stylish and functional as well, but that's another story.) All 4 of these main riders each carry their own mystique around them, mixing their soft-spoken but extremely elegant styles with tasteful skating. Then seeing Tyler Surrey added to the team and skating with dudes outside of the 'Mafia was another bonus. Throw in guys like Jordan Taylor, Jordan Trahan, and Marquise Henry and you really have a pretty consistent team aesthetic. Every guy carries that subtle, quiet, nonchalant grace when they skate, yet they all have put out some pretty gnarly footage. From guys that you'd never quite think of putting on the same team, the end result worked out extremely well. Just look at the Second Narrows hyperlink video from the team above. The skating's awesome and nothing's blown out of proportion. The edit moves quickly as every guy skates pretty fast. The black and white effects work well with the music and constant jumping around between skaters, emphasizing the team vibe more than individual video parts. That same feeling works with the quiet modesty that every NB skater possesses. In the end, New Balance pretty much took a bunch of guys from around the industry and threw them on a team together. But the result was more cohesive than you'd imagine.

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