Guest Post/Collection by Michael Regan
Ever since the advent of the skate video, the term “skate rock” has been getting thrown around like a thirsty step-jumper dying for that Zero sponsorship. Lots of bands—from Operation Ivy to Sub Society to the Odd Numbers—conjure up the “skate rock” label, but no band is as quite deserving as Dinosaur Jr. With several appearances on numerous skate video soundtracks, a two-decade-long working relationship with Alien Workshop, and even a cameo by the band’s frontman, J. Mascis, in Workshop’s “Mind Field,” I think it’s fair to conclude that Dinosaur Jr. is the ultimate skate rock band. Here are my top 5 favorite Dinosaur Jr./skate part pairings:
Mike Vallely/Santa Cruz’s Speed Freaks – “Freak Scene”
The quintessential skate song, in this opinionated critic’s opinion, and the track that introduced me to the loud and distorted sounds of Dinosaur Jr. And if this doesn’t scream kismet—Speed Freak(s) Scene—I don’t know what does.
Intro to Alien Workshop’s Memory Screen – “Little Ethnic Song”
If a brand ever had a theme song, it would have to be Alien Workshop and “A Little Ethnic Song.” This track introduced their first video offering, Memory Screen, and would go on to be used again in the intro to their most recent full-length video Mind Field.
Rudy Johnson/Blind’s Video Days – “Just Like Heaven”
By using this cover song, Rudy Johnson would not only introduce a whole slew of skaters to Dinosaur, but also to the Cure (well, at least to the nerdy shredders who did their homework).
Brian Anderson/Toy Machine’s Jump Off A Building – “Yeah We Know”
It had felt like a while since a pro used a Dinosaur song in their part, so as soon as this song kicked in, I felt an immediate rush of relief and instantly knew I’d love this part. And if Anderson wasn’t on my top-ten-favorite-skater list prior to this part, he certainly solidified his spot after my first viewing/listening was complete.
Anthony Pappalardo/Habitat’s Mosaic – “Forget the Swan”
Anthony wanted to use New Order’s “Ceremony” for this part, but Workshop was having trouble getting the rights. I suggested “Bulbs of Passion” to him, the last track on Dinosaur’s first record, but he ended up using “Forget the Swan,” the first track on said record. Which means he skated to the first song on Dinosaur’s first record for his first pro part. Subliminal messaging from Workshop, perhaps?
Honorary Mentions/Cherries on Top
Steve Claar/Memory Screen “Feel A Whole Lot Better”
Rob Dyrdek/Memory Screen “The Lung”
David Neilsen/Speed Freaks “They Always Come”
Donny Barley/Eastern Exposure 3 “On the Brink”
Reese Forbes/Element’s World Tour “Little Fury Things”
Zered Basset/TWS Outliers “The Leper”