Patrick Armbruster shooting pro snowboarder Nicolas Muller. Photo: Silvano Zeiter
August has come and gone faster than the Blue Moon—not the astrological phenomenon, but the pint glass I was just served up cold from the bar. That means that we’re just a mere 90 days or less away from another year of champagne powder on the greatest slopes on Earth (debatable, but not for this guy). As we lie asleep in our inside-out pajamas praying to the snow gods, there is one way to fill that void that only winter can bring: snowboard films. With that being said, there is no crew out there better at getting us stoked for the upcoming season than Absinthe Films.
On the first of September, Justin Hoystenek and Shane Charlebois gathered a few of the riders featured in their 15th film, Resonance, to showcase last season’s ups and downs on the big screen at the Tower Theater in SLC. In tow with the filmmakers were local riders Bode Merrill and Cale Zima, along with touring/riding pals Brandon Cocard and Lucas DeBari. As the rain started to fall, the crowds began to infiltrate the old vaudevillian theater and the first of two showings lit up the silver screen.
Veterans of the snow film industry, these guys have ascertained a surefire technique that allows their videos to play more like a feature compared to other’s Ritalin-induced cluster fudges. This year’s installment was no different. Packed full of today’s and yester-year’s top professional riders in the world’s gnarliest terrain (Utah included!), the film entertained for its entire length, including the credits.
The opening segment spotlighted DeBari. This Northwestern powder slayer didn’t disappoint as we watched him drop huge cliff booters, point insanely steep lines and conquer an immensely large road gap. Following the solid opening were segments by other attendees Zima and Cocard, which focused more on the streets. Without going into too much detail, the boys laid down some insane bangers, including one of the longest rails I’ve ever seen attempted. Crowd favorite Merrill blended both manmade and natural to put together another standout part. With one of the sleepiest surf styles out there, Nicolas Müller slayed, sprayed and slashed his way through the final segment. Making the backcountry look like a terrain park, Müller spun on, off and through every obstacle, only to land in the most compromising of situations (and of course his signature method!). The ender proved to be my second favorite part of the video (Gigi’s part was bananas, but you’ll have to buy the movie to see it!).
Like all premieres, the night ended with an old-fashioned product toss from the crew. After all the stickers and tees were gobbled up, a handstand contest was assembled to decide the winners of a new pair of boots and snowboard. After what seemed like an eternity, the last contestant fell and the prizes were awarded and the crowds dispersed. Although the premiere itself lacked the tenacity (Iron Curtain days, anyone?) I’m used to, everybody was stoked. We all remembered what it feels like to strap back in and make those fresh turns or hit that first rail, and thanks to Absinthe, we have something to live vicariously through until we can again.
Visit Absinthe-films.com for rider profiles, exclusive content and other tour coverage. Resonance can also be purchased soon at your nearest snowboard shop.