Monday, 21 March 2011

Zai DVD Review

Review by EC.

Who’s on it?
Akira Okamura, E, Kotaro Arai, Tomokazu Morinaga, Ikko Tanaka, Mao Yuasa, Ucchie, Tsutomu Kitayama, Takuma Kawamura, Hotoke, Moto Sasaki, Oni, Chuboy, Hayato Kobayashi, Takamatsu, Kishin, Doko, Fumiya Sasagawa, Zen crew, Kroche and Ares crew + more.

What about the content?
This is quite a hard dvd to review I must admit, as you watch the dvd it flows, from one section to the next, but sections feature multiple riders, not just dedicated to one rider, this is actually one of things I liked about this dvd. I got the feeling this was the real “japanese” scene, the editing is raw, some tricks are left not pulled, the crashes are shown, most of the footage are from local riding spots, its realistic.
The first real section of sorts falls to Kotaro Arai, for all those in the know, you will recognise the name, and think “jumplash”, this guy shreds the lashes of the jump variety , try plasticman (on right foot) to jumplash land on right foot, he continues with xft multiples out of it, insanely beautifully hard trick!
The next section is mix of contrasting riding styles, Tomokazu Morinaga killing the backwheel, Ikko Tanaka backwards jumplash combos, Mao Yuwasa does a  really nice invisible hand (elbow glide seat grab) multiple turbines, and Akira Okamura who we all know about! One thing seems to be in common, two piece bars and the double diamond frames, straight up BMX look. Tomokazu does a really nice inside forward rope to no- handed inside gliding gerator/backyard to frame manual exit! Some combos are pulled, some aren’t, AI drops smooth multiple stubble duck backyard combo, so smooth! Lot of riders on the Zai DVD I have never heard of before, its fresh to watch! You have no idea what’s coming next!
Takuma Kawamura is a rider whose name you may recognise, a few years ago he won the KOG series I believe, super unique style on the back wheel, inside two footed dump truck pivot to xft upside down wheelie pivot to backwards spinning lawnmower flip to upside down peg wheelie on the pedal and rides out backwards from there! Inside double footed mega turbines to foot jam walkover decade out on the pedal! Xft multiple switch foot dump truck turbines flip to spinning g-roll, really nice combos! The section ends with inside switch foot dump truck pivot to backwards g-roll turbine to forwards g roll and somehow full flip the bars exit!
The next section is a mix of flat,street,park and trails, it gets interesting again when Tomokazu drops a inside switch foot dump truck 360 bike flip to spinning lawnmower turbine out to pumped peg wheelie to dump truck glide arms round his back turbine to xft upside pivot out, sick sick combo!!!
Throughout the video, theres street footage, which Akira features in, and holds his own, bunnyhopping wait high obstacles, hang fives, and generally looking like hes having the time of his life!
KOG round 1 features next, really like how this section is done, again realistic, some guys pulling combos some not, some footage is back to back, Hotoke, Moto, Ucchie, Tsutomu Kitayama, Jimalog, Takahiro Ikeda,Yu-ki,  Hiro Morisaki, Taikou, and Russia, the music is off and on here, rather like “lil” samples, only way I can describe it.
There’s a small section of a young kid, Shoukun, riding street, 180 hops, ET jumps etc to break up the flatland footage. I have to be honest, compared to the killer flatland footage the ramp footage is not at the same level. Sorry if I offend anyone with that.
The next section of note, is for me the best section of the DVD! This belongs to Ucchie, and Tsutomu, riding at nice undercover spot, these two guys ride together yet have totally different styles, Ucchie kills the back wheel, Tsutomu kills the front, Ucchie opens the section with an obscenely good combo, opposite carved dump truck 360 flip to two footed opposite dump truck pivot to xft upside down pivot out to mega spin turbines pivot to pedal g-roll and out! There’s a few combos that we see from both riders in contests regularly, Ucchie comes close to his backwards spinning xft junkyard on pedal out to manual whopper out, next time! He hits a really nice multiple upside down two foot turbine to backwards spinning x handed xft dump truck to x handed time machine, really technical to say yet alone follow, few rewinds to bring that one to you!
The section ends with the trick of the video, I screamed “yesssssssssss” first time I watched it and still get stoked now, forward karl to halfpacker pivot to left foot backwards spinning tomahawk step over to x-ft crackpacker step over x-ft steam other side, I would go so far as to say that’s one of the best, and most beautiful combos I’ve seen in a long time.
Akira has the next section that stood out for me, a mix of him cruising the streets, and flat, Akira kills all, backwards can can spinning mega spin to forward can-can mega spin to backwards wheelie downside whip out! Akira is unique, how many flat riders can do that combo then go do a huge manual to a big sized handrail, not many! His section is similar in feel to his Same thing daily 2 section, lot of moving camera footage, really like his spinning lawnmower hand round the back of bars pivot out to x bar mega spin bike flip to mccircle, so creative! You might call him the Japanese Chad Degroot!
To sum up, Zai is a mixtape of the underground scene and the well known riders of Japan, its fresh in its production and feel, it motivated me to ride, and may motivate you to! If your into collecting flatland dvds, you will want this!

Available in Europe from:
Distance Cycles Works- Laurent-email:-


Howard said...

WOW these guys are on another level ,amazing.

flatmatters said...

Really creative and productive scene! I'll be reviewing Ultra Zai next week!

joseph said...

i just watched zai for the first time yesterday and was way stoked. it's a bunch of dudes having a good time on their bikes

jm said...

watched this twice today, it was so good! Takuma's part was incredible, great dvd all the way through. very hard to start talking about it as there's just soo many good things in it. i found it hard to look away because there was no telling what you'd see next.

joseph said...

There’s a small section of a young kid, Shoukun, riding street, 180 hops, ET jumps etc to break up the flatland footage. I have to be honest, compared to the killer flatland footage the ramp footage is not at the same level. Sorry if I offend anyone with that.-review by EC

this video reminded me that no one has a monopoly on bmx. that kids a lot better than a lot of the crap vids that are posted here. sorry if i offend anyone with that.

flatmatters said...

Fair comment Joseph.
I was merely commenting from a review p.o.v to to give those people who haven't seen the dvd, some insight.