Category: The Jaded Review


Hello. my name is Kris, I am Astrals’ graphic designer, web designer and occasionally help out on product design such as the LE5 and LE7 lifevest. I also have a life outside this, which involves DJ’ing, photographing nature and Hippie Watching, which is an internationally appreciated form of people watching used to pass time at festivals. It can be done without the Guides I’ve written, but… why reinvent the wheel?, plus the sales of it help perpetuate the cycle of me going to festivals to charge hippies to make fun of them. This gastank ain’t gonna fill itself, SON! The below photos illustrate some of the uses people have found for the guides at festivals

The Guides in action

The Guides in action

Ephraim Hippie Watching

Ephraim Hippie Watching

ZsaZsa training the next generation of Hippie Watchers.

ZsaZsa training the next generation of Hippie Watchers.

I was asked by Bryan if I would be interested in trading a pair of the soon to be released Bakers for a humorous Jaded Review style review of them. Of course, I said yes, because who doesn’t want to trade gear for something they were going to do anyways? Now… to figure out how to somehow make the fact that I went to a party relevant to a shoe review.

I ran into my first dilemma – I have to assume most readers of this blog are not familiar with the west coast festival culture and the jenga-like towering mountain of nonsense these hippies have built their summer yurts on. I imagine it’s imilar to when you try to explain the river rat lifestyle to normals they look at you as if you politely asked them whether they would mind if you ate their dog. So, before I get into the shoe review, I feel it’s only fair to explain the environment they will be used in first.

For this unavoidably biased review I chose Photosynthesis Festival, which is one of the smaller festivals comparatively. It happens on the Northwest tip of Washingtons Olympic Penninsula on Makah Bay in the Nation of Makah. This is a Native America dry reservation with population of a few thousand.The Festival itself is a three day affair primarily centered around scaring local wildlife, small children and dogs by attempting to play techno loud enough to be heard from the moon using immense soundsystems.

This would be the third year in this location and leads to some very interesting encounters between the local Makah and hippies. It draws about 800 hippies and about 800 locals. The are itself is absolutely stunning – that is… when it’s not covered in clouds and misting. As an added bonus there is tons of smoked salmon and dungeness crabs around. To save needless typing – Everything south of this sentence is photo credit: me

Cape Flattery 5 Miles to the North of where the event was held. This is the northwest-most point in the US and where you can wrestle and tame your own winged rainbow covered spirit reptiles like in Avatar.

Cape Flattery 5 Miles to the North of where the event was held. This is the northwest-most point in the US and where you can wrestle and tame your own winged rainbow covered spirit reptiles like in Avatar.

Godrays.

Godrays.

The Gear:

I like gear. I like being appropriately ready for some crazy adventures while at festivals. Just past where the event is held there is five miles of jaw dropping tidal flats which connect up with Cape Flattery. We call this place CrabTown, which is an in-joke but knowing this will help explain a few things a bit below. These flats are covered in slippery kelp, crabs and all forms of beach detritus washed up from Japan and beyond. Even though Bryan only asked a Baker review, I brought my entire run of Astral shoes to give them all a try.

Essential Hippie Watching Gear: Left to right: Waterproof Ortlieb Vario panniers/backback, Go Ruck 1000d Cordura bag with Think Tank Camera system with 5dmkIII, 70-200 2.8II, 17-35 f2.8II and 50mm 1.4,  Watershed dry bag, and Packcubes.

Essential Hippie Watching Gear: Left to right: Waterproof Ortlieb Vario panniers/backback, Go Ruck 1000d Cordura bag with Think Tank Camera system with 5dmkIII, 70-200 2.8II, 17-35 f2.8II and 50mm 1.4, Watershed dry bag, and Packcubes.

The line of shoes Im testing this weekend. Front to back Black and Tan Porter, Green and Lime Brewer and Tuquoise Baker.

The line of shoes I tested this weekend. Front to back Black and Tan Porter, Green and Lime Brewer and Turquoise Baker.

Why am I here in the first place?

As mentioned before, I am a DJ which is another ludicrous profession where I press buttons which play other peoples music and dance around like I’m doing something of consequence. This time around I got a beach ‘showcase’ which means two friends and I all play in a three hour block. Since the three of us all have big hair we called it the Big Hair Showdown At Crabtown. This is the first place I tested the Bakers out. I can report that they are perfectly fine to DJ in, No trainwrecks or embarassing faceplants while dancing around. – see pictures below.

The Bakers 400d Cordura gives me peace of mind when walking through fields of crabs that throw their ‘come at me bro’ stance. We’ve later decided that this is not an aggressive stance; they are in fact throwing their claws  up in revelatory worship of you as an omnipotent deity.

The Bakers 400d Cordura gives me peace of mind when walking through fields of crabs that throw their claws up in their ‘Come at me, Bro’ stance. We’ve later decided that this is not an aggressive stance; they are in fact throwing their claws up in revelatory worship of you as an omnipotent deity. Either way, your feet are safe.

Flyer for The Bighair Showdown at Crabtown

The Tables have turned: the flyer for The Bighair Showdown at Crabtown

Essential Gear – Crabtown Anti-Social Club Flask for drinking whiskey on the sly in a dry reservation. shhhhh. Also Great for Childrens Birthday Parties, Funerals and parole hearings.

Essential Gear from 2011 – Crabtown Anti-Social Club Flask for drinking whiskey on the sly in a dry reservation. shhhhh. Also Great for Childrens Birthday Parties, Funerals and parole hearings.

The Baker – Performance Review

Now that I’ve regaled you with three pages of uncut nonsense… Let’s actually talk about this shoe. The Baker is a slip-on shoe with upcycled and regrooved tire tread sole, 400D Cordura upper and soft cushy midsole. It has the flushport in the back and mid-sole drain ports you are familiar with from the first two releases of Astrals’ shoe line. Since a majority of my time at a festival is spent either in a circle talking or walking somewhere else to stand in a circle to talk, comfort is important and the Bakers bring it. Of the three semi-technical shoes I brought it was the best fit for the wide range of activities I found myself participating in and also let the least sand and dirt in.These activities are explained and illustrated below

Other shoes make bold claims – but for my money the Baker is the only shoe I would trust for mission critical performance while operating a bike powered smoothie blender. p.s. Double Mountain: Hire me to write about your beer! I’m fucking killing it here.

Other shoes make bold claims – but for my money the Baker is the only shoe I would trust for mission critical performance while operating a bike powered organic smoothie blender. p.s. Double Mountain: Hire me to write about your beer! I’m fucking killing it here.

The Bakers excel at color coordinating with costumed Festival dogs. Ideal for accessorizing with a festival hottie – that is, ahrmm, if you aren’t happily married.

The Bakers excel at color coordinating with costumed Festival dogs. Ideal for accessorizing with a festival hottie – that is, ahrmm, if you aren’t happily married.

I ran across a sign advertising a workshop about “Monetizing Quantan Mechanics” which, frankly, I knew would be absolute gold; giving me a wealth of material to work off of for years. Apparently, if you buy these little holograms to put in your vehicles gastank it will not only clean the output of your car but it will also clean the input of the air going into your vehicle. These claims are backed up by revolutionary breakthroughs in the cutting edge field of ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. In fact, I believe I have a better understanding of Quantum theory than this guy for for two reasons: 1) I can spell it right 2) I know that most of the explanations of Quantum theory are simply oft-abused metaphors trying to explain the mathematics to people who don’t have a mathematical background about the illogical behaviors of sub-atomic particles. Not you know… Gastanks. </minirant>

The first step in monetizing anything – Try spelling it right. This was one of at least 6 workshops – the only thing worse at this festival was the dude who was trying to play saxaphone over everyones set.

The first step in monetizing anything – Try spelling it right. This was one of at least 6 workshops – the only thing worse at this festival was the tophat dude who was trying to play saxaphone over everyones set.

End of Festival Blow out sale on Holograms for your gas tank.

End of Festival Blow out sale on Holograms for your gas tank.

Turntable Bike soundsytem next to Holograms for your Gastank ‘workshop’ – The Joys of Hippie Watching – This shit writes itself.

Turntable Bike soundsytem next to Holograms for your Gastank ‘workshop’ – The Joys of Hippie Watching – This shit writes itself.

The Bakers performed well in all aspects of this. They work great running towards Quantum Snake Oil Salesmen so you don’t miss anything… Great for standing there, and great for running away after your brain absorbed a near-fatal dose of BS. Additionally, they would be excellent for pedaling that turntable bike soundsystem around.

It’s not all bad!

Lest you think that the festivals are filled with weird scams and dudes running around with a tophats and saxaphones let’s take a peak at a few of the better moments.

 

Main Stage in the evening with dancers and glow toy spinners.

Main Stage in the evening with dancers and glow toy spinners.

I took a bunch of these pictures because I figure kayakers and nature lovers would absolutely love the radiolarian/protozoan/diatom feeling of this glass piece.

I took a bunch of these pictures because I figure kayakers and nature lovers would absolutely love the radiolarian/protozoan/diatom feeling of this glass piece.

Inside the Tribe 13 Art Gallery. More next-level glass art featuring bubbles and kelp.

Inside the Tribe 13 Art Gallery. More next-level glass art featuring bubbles and kelp.

Inside the Tribe 13 Art Gallery - A collaboration between Alex Ubatuba and his partners whos name I stupidly didn't write down.

Inside the Tribe 13 Art Gallery – A collaboration between Alex Ubatuba and his partners whos name I stupidly didn’t write down.

Resin cast Romanesco brocolli flower

Resin cast Romanesco brocolli flower

Onward! To CRABTOWN!

Wel,l we didn’t goto the official crabtown – we went to another Tidal flat just north of Neah Bay (nicknamed New Crab Town) to look for fossilized crabs. I originally intended to test out and write about the Brewers here but my friend showed up with flipflops which is no way to explore tidal flats (doubly so since the last time we went it tore up his flipflops) So I gave him my Brewers and I went mucking about in the Bakers. All in all, the Baker performed fine but for the sort of crazy climbing and exploring I do I would much have preferred to have the Stealth rubber sole for traction and the shoelaces to keep it tight, which would have been really useful in the incredibly slick kelp fields. The tire tread did a surprisingly good job but I probably wouldn’t recommend it for everyone.

The wife, Alisha, flexing her crabtown steez while showing us this starfish breaking open a mussel. Astral Brewers in the back and hand wrought chain-mail bracelet I bartered for last summer.

The wife, Alisha, flexing her crabtown steez while showing us this starfish breaking open a mussel. Astral Brewers in the back and hand wrought chain-mail bracelet I bartered for last summer.

Crab!

I, for one, welcome our new crab overlords.

Wind Carved Sandstone.

Wind Carved Sandstone.

More awesome sandstone

More awesome sandstone

Seagrass, Mussels Bladderac and Seaweed.

Seagrass, Mussels Bladderac and Seaweed.

Tidal flats with seagrass and millions of little snails.

Tidal flats with seagrass and millions of little snails.

Lastly, The Spoils

After a good festival you end up with some good pile of junk to bring home to stack on your hippie altar. Here’s ours with some descriptions.

Festival Spoils - Including: Large Bismuth crystal & Melanite Andradite Crystal traded for some zines, 'Upgrade to Warlock Status' pin, 'Everyday is overtime for a Jedi Hustler' Money-clip, random Altar junk, Seal Vertabrae, Play money to make it rain whenever I deem necessary.

Festival Spoils – Including: Large Bismuth crystal & Melanite Andradite Crystal traded for some zines, ‘Upgrade to Warlock Status’ pin, ‘Everyday is overtime for a Jedi Hustler’ Money-clip, random Altar junk, Seal Vertabrae, Play money to make it rain whenever I deem necessary.

Thank you for reading this LOOOOOOOOOOONG article all the way to the end.

The Skoi Milk Incident

Some of you may know the enigmatic human known as Skoi. If you don’t, let me tell you a bit about him… He’s got a beard which he frequently dips in some of the worlds tastiest beers. On either side of that beard are two ears that he frequently fills with some of the worlds trickiest IDM. Somewhere in that tangled hair pile is a mouth through which he talks a ton of bullshit. Suffice it to say, we are friends and so as part of our increasingly outlandish annual shenannigans we usually pull at our yearly pilgrammage to Orcas Island for the 4th of July Weekend we decided to revisit an old idea my friend Michelle had. The idea was to set up a booth during one of Skois dj sets and start drinking Skoi Milk. This unforunately didn’t pan out exactly as planned due to a two stage setup and Skoi playing in some Tea Shanti Tee-Pee type setup.

As I was conspiring with a few of my friends on this project I ended up sending tons of photos to them as the prank evolved so below you will see how it all evolved. First… I started by grabbing a photo off Skois facebook page and made a vector logo out of it.

We then turned this logo into a rubber stamp and it worked out awesome.

And then made a ton of banners, signs and assorted nonsense like the skoiMilk containers.

At the same time I decided to make some tea for my friend Darin, who always thinks I play music too loud and as hes the promoter of the event, and thereby the guy who makes sure we dont end up enraging the redneck neighbors to the point where they fire their shotgun in the air (again) he has to continually remind me that “we aren’t trying to rage it here, bro” Unfortunately… raging it… is what I do! So I figured I would pre-emptively make a special blend of tea for Darin… Darins Own, “We’re Not Trying To Rage it Here, Bro” sleepytime tea. Unfortunately, it didn’t help much, I still raged it and Darin still had to reprimand me.

In the process of all this had to mess around with one of the silly iphone apps I had showing off all this nonsense to my conspirators.

At the event we had to had out in our tent and prepare all the cups in which we would serve the skoi Milk

If you can believe it… we ended up at this crazy place on Orcas Island called “the exchange” which is like a thirftstore outside a dumptser. We found a bunch of cardboard letters.. including MILK. There wasnt a S-K-O-I – so we left it at that… I dont know why I insisted on painting it white, but it had to happen. My homie Sam manifested the spraypaint… by manifest I mean he went to the store and bought it. We spent the rest of the weekend trying to get rid of the white grass, which was a bad call on my part. Sorry Kai.

 

While skoi was off we all took over the food zone, comandeered the remaining unserved chai provided by our good friend Holly from Harmony Chai (hint: the best chai in the northwest!) and started serving up hot steaming cups of skoiMilk. Skoi eventually joined us and was flabbergasted. I wish we had more photos of that part but we were all pretty busy laughing and drinking our skoiMilk.

Skoi eventually went to sleep in his woodpile and brought some letters to remind himself.a week later I received this MMS from skoi on his way back to whatever mountain hes living on, sleeping in his woodpile tent, pretending to be a hipster, drinking cartons of his own milk. sad really. =)

The Jaded Review is looking for an Intern who lives in Portland Or. The position is one day a week for 4-6 hours in the office in the Northeast. I will be working along side you and offering assistance as needed. There is a dedicated computer available for this position.

This is a great chance to learn a wide variety of skills including: social marketing, writing / editing, graphic design, page layout, office management, silk screening, product creation. This is a great chance to expand your skill set and take advantage of my 15+ years of experience working with many aspects of computers and design.

You will be exposed to every step of the process from inception to printing of a zine and in the future larger exposure mediums such as magazine, book & video. As the Jaded Review grows there will be no shortage of things to learn about the creation and management of a small business.

Looking for: First and foremost I’m looking for an honest, dedicated person with good sense of humor and  a strong desire to contribute to a larger project/vision. Familiarity with the zine and culture which it focuses on is important. As the job will include a lot of phone time you should possess good phone etiquette, a congenial disposition and the ability to communicate clearly and concisely.

Additional skills that will be helpful: Good time management, organizational skills, sense of humor, an ability to learn new skills quickly. Previous experience in any of the following areas are a plus: small business management, public relations, phone, zine creation, writing / editing, graphic design, management, silk screening, html web dev, secretarial skills, etc.

Not looking For:
This isn’t for people who want to solely contribute content. I’m not saying that this position won’t be open to contributions, but if that’s your main drive in applying you probably wont be stoked with what the position actually entails. =) I highly value punctuality so please… no forgetful flaky folks.

Can this lead into a paid position?
The long answer is yes, but in the short term there is currently very little budget so it starts unpaid as most intern positions do. However – The Jaded Review has a strong identity and is growing faster than I am able to manage alone. While it’s too early to make any solid commitments I do envision this position being the first step into a becoming a staff member as the next few stages unfold. I also want to create a profit sharing structure for future projects.  I don’t want to release plans prematurely, but suffice it to say, there are much larger projects in the works and I plan to use all the resource from that to continue to grow the Jaded Review into a self-sustaining entity run by those who contribute.

What you can expect to learn:
This is a great chance to expand your skill set and take advantage of my 15+ years of experience working with many aspects of computers and design.

You will be exposed to every step of the process from inception to printing of a zine and in the future larger exposure mediums such as magazine, book & video. As the Jaded Review grows there will be no shortage of things to learn about the creation and management of a small business.

Benefits / Perks
Aside from all the above mentioned training and the possibility for growing into a position perfectly suited to you there are other perks. These may include going to festival and events to review, use of resources and getting to participate in a respected publication.

Applying:

Please write to [email protected] and tell me briefly why you want to apply for this position, any relevant experience, skills you have. I will be reviewing all the emails in the coming weeks and will take it from there. If you write and ask me questions that are explained in here I’m probably not going to respond to you. additionally please do not write to other addresses, contact forms, or hit me up on facebook about this. Sorry to be terse, I’m just very busy.

 

Jaded Review Issue 2 now shipping

coverFinally! the highly anticipated Jaded Review issue 2 has arrived and is ready to ship. This issue is set up as a grandiose version of what we envisioned the first issue to be – a 24 page guidebook set up like a bird-watchers guide – to assist outsiders in understanding and navigating this crazy hippie culture. Currently there are 15 hippie archetypes with illustrations, saftey guides, festival guides and a reprint of the much lauded guidebook to euphemistic star-childe terminology.

Due to the nature of the magazine and the fact that there is zero distribution and not available anywhere but here –  it tends to inspire people to “borrow” them and never return them so I recommend buying a couple to share with your friends and to keep one for yourself – It also makes shipping more economical.

I will post a few pages from this as soon as I have a free moment but for now enjoy a few of the illustrations. There is also a page about the creation of this zine. To be kept in the loop about upcoming issues join the newsletter at the bottom of the page


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baller
Illustration of “The Baller” spotted in the wild in Tuscon Arizona

featherhat

“A featherhat”

wook

Illustration of a “wook” spotted in a parking lot


User Reviews (mostly from Facebook)

Natalia Price:
it was all the talk at earthdance festival. It rips on us so hard….hilarious…..really makes us laugh at ourselves and the absurdity of defining ourselves through fashion and ego

Robert Gordon:
this is no joke one of the greatest things i’ve read! sooo funny!!

Vanessa Harlan: HILARIOUS!! This truly made me laugh out loud! I need more copies! Soooooo funny! (great job Kris!!!)

Chelsea Ross: The jaded review arrived today and made us laugh the whole line thru at the city pound. we were glared at. it’s friggin brilliant and hilarious. it should be filed in every respectable library in the land. Hats off to yous!

Tim Donlou: heck yeah, this thing had me in stitches out there. thx fer postin’

Elizabeth Cahill: funniest sh*t I’ve read in my life- so true!!

David Jerome:that shit was HIGHlarious! I never got a copy so hit me up!

Amanda Lilikoi: massive hysteria was induced at sunrise with the discovery of this zine, and to learn YOU were the responsible party just makes it all the better!

Andrea Campbell:So freakin’ funny mister!! Thanks again for your hilarious mastery on the hippie perspective!

Arun Once Was ZyGoat: I am SO GRATEFUL that the jaded review has moonifestivalled onto our coffee table! deep breath, everyone! I am galactivating all over myself just thinking of it!

Jaded Review issue 2 – In Progress

Hey People it’s been a long time since a group of friends and I whipped out that pathetic excuse for a zine – The Jaded Review and passed it out at the 2006 emerg-n-see and then posted later. Totally surprising to us its become a bit of a phenomenon being reprinted by friends and the demand for a new issue has been highly requested so I’ve let it sit on the back burner for over a year as I slowly worked on parts of it. Now at the end of the festival season Ive finally got off my ass and finished it… its like waiting until spring to buy your winter coat – oh well. Issue two was more of a serious endeavor – a 24 page guide to hippie watching in america – the different types with illustrations, blatant generalizations, and all manners of subtle snarkiness. I took a few photos of the progress as I was working on it. If you wish to order it check this page. (coming in a second)

img_0263

Wook, Baller, & ShirtCocker illustration pre-inking

img_0262

The Dj & The Hater page spread

img_0267

The test run – full of incomplete sentences, bad grammar and errors. Now a collectors item like 3 legged buffalo nickels.

img_0265

No jadedness here! Our first ecstatic customer

The Jaded Review Issue 1 – Shut up Hippy

there are also the PDF files if you want to print your own and spread the love

Front Inside Comic

Some friends of mine and I wrote this earlier this summer to pass out at festivals. Our dedication, abundance of time, and financial support allowed us to put out a first and final print run of a staggering 19 copies, yet despite the minimal print run hundreds of my friends seemed to have read it. So I’ve decided to offer it to the internet for the rest of you.

The zine wasn’t really finished as I wanted to have at least 8 pages, but I was busy with work and after awhile it didn’t really seem worth the effort… err i mean I offended myself so deeply while writing it that I had to stop. The original idea was a travel guide for newbies entering the festival circuit (doesnt matter if its the burningman-neo-pagan or the hippie jam band circuit theres a little something for everyone)

We started with the Guide to Euphamistic starchild terminology, explaining what these terms really mean. Theres a Astral Chakra Matrix (check out the online version) to help you create your own playa-name, tribe.net name, or the name of your fire-spinning troupe … whatever really.

Astral Chakra Matrix

Here is an online version of the astral chakra matrix. Now you can now magically manifest your prayerformance troupe name, playa-name or next cd name with ease. Simply refresh the page to ‘imagineer it”



And lastly theres a comic which you can fill in with your own adventures.
If you take offense to this be sure to write some angry letters!