It’s hard not to laugh at the name Gnarlytown. It sounds like a braindead parody of an extreme sports/hard rock festival. But as far as skateboarding-related events go, at least it’s different than the typically uber “cool” things that go on in New York City or LA.
Led by Chris “Cobra” Cole, Gnarlytown is a festival that conjures a certain image of mid-2000s rock music and skateboarding — tight pants, insecure, and pissed off — that I hadn’t seen since I used to used to shop at Hot Topic and buy Etnies from Zumiez. There’s something to be said about people still embracing that awkward period today. I’m not sure what’s to be said, but definitely something.
When I got there, the general no-fucks-given attitude of the crowd felt unabashedly American, and not necessarily in a bad way. I heard one guy say to his girlfriend, “If you’re not gonna show your tits, I’m gonna leave.” Hopefully these photos can convey at least some of that energy.
Photos: Linnea Bullion
Words & Captions: James Lee
You know how there’s still that one person in your town who has a mohawk? Now imagine every one of those mohawkers from every town everywhere came to the same place on the same day. That’s Gnarlytown
It was a little weird to see how recognizable Chris was outside the skateboarding world, but I guess that’s what doing Street League and having your own pocket knife brand will get you. Sadly, no one came up to Chris wearing a Hot Wax shirt. Posers.
Remember the scrawny kid you used to make fun of in 6th grade who smelled bad and ate his boogers? This is him now.
I felt out of place for not wearing all black, but luckily there was a convenient shop to buy all kinds of evil clown and skull-based sex symbol merchandise.
I guess this is the P.C. way to say “Hail Satan” nowadays.
Hey, it’s not like Ed Templeton has a monopoly on photographing teens making out.
I don’t want to call David González a poser, but technically, that’s exactly what he was doing here.
Ever wonder what happened to all those teens who used to go to Warped Tour? They had kids (that were most likely conceived in a festival Porta Potty).
Shoving your face in a fence just to see how it feels. Some classic little kid stuff right here.
If you’re gonna design a mascot, don’t make him look like he’s about to get run over by a car.
I asked him if the bullets on his belt were real and he said, “They’re as real as my tears.” Sick.
This kid could grow up to be a presidential candidate, or he could do something way sicker like start a business that makes extra long coffins for people who die with their mohawks still intact. Either way he’s gonna be my boss one day so I can’t rip on him too hard.
It wouldn’t be a true punk rock/skateboarding/motocross show on a shipping depot in Southern California without at least one shirtless fat dude fight. Live and let live, brother!