Tag Archives: meindl


As I lay here trying to influence myself to write anything, the whole notion of influence (and Bob Beaudine and Paul Adams’ works disprove the blog-centric notion of what constitutes and influencer) becomes even more ludicrous. Still, I’m honoured that my friend Mr. Matt Halfhill (whose drive and sheer knowledge of SEO and power of social media is genuinely inspirational) put me at #41 on a Complex list of people who have some juice in the sports footwear sector. To be honest, I don’t feel any more influential than I did when I started winging it in this industry — I’m still winging it to the present day. I’m also looking for some influence to assist me in executing some projects I’ve been lucky enough to get involved in, so I’m currently looking at hardcore performance boots from some respected names that don’t seem to have made the crossover. I’ve long been a fan of Bavarian boot masters Meindl (I obsessed over a transparent demo version of one of their top tier designs for some time), but Italy’s La Sportiva are an excellent brand too. I saw some of their ugly but efficient looking mountain runners on Japanese feet a few years back and became preoccupied with what this 80 year-old brand does.

The needs of mountain runners are myriad, but La Sportiva”s Zianno di Fiemme based factory makes performance footwear that’s far from rustic close to home with some serious GORE-TEX affiliations. From a visual standpoint, the Nepal EVO GTX mountain boot is hardbody and deeply obnoxious (my two key boot criteria), with the Rasta coloured midsole housing a variable thickness TPU for front crampons, the yellow being a similar deal for rear crampons and the red being an antishock material. This boot looks like a good post apocalyptic pick. I could spend a substantial amount of time just gawping at the wild designs La Sportiva put out and while they’ve had a rep for bold colours since the 1980s, these are serious in their performance capabilities. I believe that Merrells well-regarded 1980s and early 1990s Italian-made output came from the La Sportiva factory too. There’s colourway inspirations for days right here, but their more subdued stuff holds up pretty well too.

Another superior export from Northern Italy, Giorgio Moroder, is the subject of a tremendous interview in the new ‘Fantastic Man’ that covers an array of topics that might be relevant to the interests of this blog’s handful of readers. He purports to have never used drugs (despite the image I posted here a few years ago, with what seems to be a colossal line of chop), bigs up Rick Rubin and David Guetta, reveals he worked with Michael Jackson and, with a progressive mindset, explains that “Moroder-esque” is usually a byword for regressive sounds that he wouldn’t make now. He thinks the soundtrack to ‘Drive’ would be, “a little outdated in the ’80s.” Between that and Nile Rodgers’ 60th birthday video messages with the Daft Punk appearance, it’s a good week for legends who are still standing.


Taken from outdoorsmagic.com last summer – more German off-road footwear. Not sure if this Meindl AIR-ACTIVE boot is just a demo version to display technology, but it looks amazing – the ‘Hollowman’ of hikers.

You know what? This could be broken down into 5 smaller blog posts, but a little voice has given the order to lump them into one composite entry. Trawling through the hard drive a few pictures cropped up that seemed pretty bloggable.


Slowly but surely, this site seems to be turning into a film one, and that’s no bad thing, and there’s few better subject matters than Walter Hill’s ‘The Warriors’. Even as a Tony Scott superfan who even enjoyed ‘Domino; to some degree (‘Top Gun’ however is, and was, garbage) the notion of him helming a remake is a depressing one, though obsessed as I was with the Scott Glenn 1987 ‘Man on Fire’ (weird that in the book Creasy’s death was faked, leading to 4 follow-up novels) as a kid because it contained people getting shot in the face, I have to concede Tony made a better job of it.

My optimism for his interpretation of Yurick’s tale of a gang on the run is still nil. It didn’t help that Walter Hill himself attempted to sabotage his own film with his ‘director’s cut’ a few years back- a reverse Ridley Scott if you will, making the film into complete crap. You all know about the Furies and Turnbull ACs, but how about the Hurricanes, Boppers, Hi-Hats, Electric Eliminators, Savage Huns, Moon Runners, Saracens, Satans Mothers, Jones Street Boys and Van Cortlandt Rangers (not to be mistaken for the Van Buren Boys)? I’d love to know what The Xylophones mentioned in the original script looked like. Sol Yurick’s 1965 novel is pretty good but like ‘Man on Fire’ dramatically different to the final film.

Despite all these attempts to sully a childhood favourite, Tomer Hanuka’s new ‘The Warriors’ print for Alamo captures all I love about the film – I’m a fan of Tomer’s work, and he captures the relentless pursuit perfectly. Letterforms, movement, the grim surroundings – it’s all there, and smartly composed. You can see Tomer’s design process here, and buy the print here.


The Nike Moire was a sorely underrated shoe – now Nike are firing on several cylinders when it comes to new performance product, but in 2006, we kidded ourselves that some tat was a future cult classic – the Moire was the exception – shit, it even had Steve Jobs trading in his New Balances, as the Free/Sock Dart styling was iPod compatible. It deserves to be revered. 2006 was also the year when the Air Max 360 came out looking like something from a youthful sports footwear fanatic’s exercise book doodles. These Nike Moire Max 360 unreleased prototypes from 2006/2007 seemed to be part of a Nike iD Laser experiment and some play to coincide with the ‘One Time Only’ hybrid fun…note the Laser etchings on the Air unit and even the outsole.

Alongside the 180/Mowabb mashup shelved circa. 2004 and ACG Zoom Salbis Mid GTX these could’ve been huge – nothing says 2006 like a Nike Moire Max 360. Given the current Air Attack creations this shoe could fit in with ease…

As an extra bonus, Nike seemed to create a ‘Sopranos’ Dunk as part of the Laser research. Was this part of the HBO hookup that led to an etched AF1 in ‘Entourage’?


LVC plus Filson has caused one hell of a mess in a matter of months. We might be too cool to complain about denim bleed on footwear, but this is invading the peripheral vision. All suggestions on how to get the stains out of canvas, bar a total re-dye are welcome. Some would say it adds character – I say it just looks shit. Distressing should occur over time. This is just negligence on my part and proof I deserve little more than a string Umbro backpack until I can learn how to look after things properly. Give me a solution and I’ll reward you with some of the unwanted promo tat that’s building up in my personal space.


I’m not sure whether to admire or shake my head at the lack of trend-level promo push for adidas’ best release this year. Even the excellent microsite seems woefully underexposed. Having spotted some casual footwear in old catalogues that stands alongside whatever heritage brand is compromising dignity for a piece of the current workwear action, they put out 1,978 pairs of the Super Trekking boot, made in Germany. It’s a great design and a nice little project. More like this please…


There’s plenty of Dennis Hopper talk after his passing, and it’s a shame that folk are forgetting his best role – (okay, tied with Frank Booth) Freck in ‘River’s Edge’. After seeing Hopper in one bad film after another – a 2005 ‘The Crow’ sequel making the Super Mario misstep seem minor, I’d become a non-believer prior to his death. That was foolish. As with the passing of Norman Mailer, who’d tussled with Rip Torn in his time, I’d also sided with Torn in his feud with Hopper. Churlish. Very churlish.

You want more underrated Hopper turns? How about the psycho-for-hire era performance as the crazed Lieutenant ‘Lefty’ Enright in the underrated (yeah, I said it) ‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2’ or as the dad in ‘Rumble Fish’ or as Sponson in Altman’s ‘OC & Stiggs’. Then there’s his title role in 1976’s ‘Mad Dog Morgan’, an insanely violent Australian outback with an exiled Hopper, coked-up, drunk-as-a-sailor doing what he did best. Hunt it down, and check the behind-the-scenes below…


Allow me the indulgence of breaking habit, and posting something athletic-footwear based on this blog. I’m aware there’s another sit for this kind of thing, but alas, at time-of-writing, all things army are tinged with controversy and matters of Ministry Of Defence military issue quality are deeply topical. I’ve been known to complain about build on a product, but when it’s a matter of life or death rather than cracked paint on the sole, it’s something else altogether.

As a result, the release of Nike’s Special Forces Boot earlier in the year was a subdued one rather than a bells and whistles affair.  So I thought I’d spotlight it here instead in a rare moment of product focus. I also think a lot of the writeups I’ve seen elsewhere have been pretty dry.