[Mobile: Alex Tank getting slinky in Helsinki back in the day. Photo: Sami Tuoriniemi]
Riding with your crew, pushing each other and having a blast is one of the cornerstones of this fun old experience we call snowboarding. Now, since the democratisation of videography, more and more crews are producing edits from their exploits and some of them have gone beyond the traditional ‘bro-cam’ cuts to produce entertaining, imaginative, or just downright hammer heavy video content on the regs. We’re stoked on that, so over the season we’ll be throwing the virtual Shakas to some of our favourite Euro crews and up this time are the good Germans from Atagge. We sat down with founding member, Alex Tank...
How did the Atagge Crew come together? How long have you known each other and been snowboarding together?
The very first ignition started back in the days, when me and Jagge (Jakob Haueisen) spent every free minute on the hill together. At some point riding the chairlift, he came up with the combination of our two names: Atagge. But more and more homies joined the cult over the years and by now it's got quite big. There’s no official list who’s in or not. Everybody who’s down basically!
Atagge is obviously a pretty big creative outlet for you personally, but where do the rest of the crew members come in? Who does what in terms of filming, editing, social media...
I’m basically only in charge of the visual direction. I am doing a lot of the editing on the videos together with whoever filmed it (Alex Pfeffer or Philipp Romppel) and I am in charge of the Atagge Instagram, but basically just because I couldn’t think of a better name for my personal account when I got the app, haha. Jagge on the other hand does t-shirt and board designs. Gido is in charge of organising our demo event together with Basti Kuhn and Flo Geiger and all the other homies help out where ever possible! Good gang!
One of the first edits you put out under the Atagge last winter was Hypocrisia (above). You talk about the privilege of being able to snowboard. How do you remind yourself of that on a daily basis?
Yeah, I worked on that together with one my best friends, Simon Reichel. He usually wants to take his work to a different level with more substance, which I highly appreciate. At some point we were sitting in the kitchen in the middle of the night talking about how ridiculous the world around us in general, and snowboarding in particular, has become recently. Or at least the industry. Everything got super strict, everything has to be “cool" or “extreme" or follow certain unwritten laws.
People take themselves so seriously in this little world just to “make it", but sometimes don’t even see how snowboarding should be way more and way less than that at the same time. We are living in a world full of hate, rivalry and prejudice already and in this exact world snowboarding is a great gift. We should use it while we can.
You seem to travel a huge amount and the films you’ve made with Vincent Urban are pretty next level. How important is it for you to travel?
Glad you like the films. Thank you! Traveling is big factor in my life, for different reasons. One is just that I am usually pretty restless. The other is that going to different places and cultures can help you develop your personality in a great manner. Home will usually still be home when you come back after a while, but your point of view changed. And that changes everything.
I guess that’s what I like most about going to foreign places. It’s a different world. You don’t belong there. You might even feel lost. But there are things in the world that inter-culturally work. Maybe even the most simple thing like a smile and, boom, you have a connection. Finding things out like that is a wonderful experience. We’re all human, after all.
[Getting busy in the crew's spiritual home of the Crystal Ground park.]
You’re heavily involved with the adidas snowboarding crew as well, how is that working out? Am I correct in thinking there’s going to be a team movie pretty soon?
Yeah, I’m hyped on the program. It’s all pretty low-key and not too much in your freakin’ face. I’ve been on a few trips with the other guys of team now and I feel like we all get along quite well, which is a big factor if you try to be productive. There will be a collabo-video together with Videograss this year. Hopefully a “real" team video soon, then.
What do you think about social media in snowboarding? Is it easier to get noticed now, or harder?
Mixed feelings, I have to say. I just think there is way too much emphasis on it these days. Sure, I can understand the companies' perspective. It’s a good tool to reach people, but at the end it’s still just online. There has to happen more than just that, other wise things perish in this never ending flood of content. Maybe also quality wise. To be honest, I am pretty bored of most of the content that’s coming out these days. Seems like people mixed up the saying: Quality rather than Quantity.
If Atagge had to call one place home, where would that be?
I guess Crystal Ground might everybody's home of choice in that case!
What one piece of advice would you give to a new, young crew coming up in the snowboard world?
Do it for yourself, not too please anybody else, otherwise you will lose the spirit at some point. Try to look for aesthetics rather than aerobatics and bring something new to the table. People will realise if you’re fake or not. Snowboarding is so much more than being “pro", but if you have that certain something, people will see it!
[Atagge's latest edit is voll krass alter.]