There’s one story about Nate Tyler that’s been written time and time again: He lives in a yurt, grows his hair out long and lives the quiet life in the hills of Central California, occasionally poking his head out to punt on wedgy, rocky lefts. You’d think he rode an alaia by his media profile at times. But the reality is quite different.
Nate is one of the sickest goofyfoots in the game. And he’ll also skate over unannounced with a 12-pack of Coors Light and slam the mini ramp for an afternoon of beers and tunes. He’s a humble punk who stresses and cares and has a beautiful family and we are obsessed with watching him surf.
Today he and Victor Pakpour release the first visions of their new film Mute and we chatted to them about what it is.
WHAT YOUTH: SO WHAT ARE WE WATCHING HERE?
VICTOR PAKPOUR: Well, we’re not exactly doing this to retire or get paid or as an obligation — it really just came about to do because it’s just too fun. When the idea came up, I was like, “I’m probably not going to be able to do this again,” so like, why don’t we just do it?
NATE TYLER: I’ve never been that excited about something that could even halfway be labeled as a “profile film.” Those give me the worst anxiety ever. Profile films in general — of the past and the future — are a thing that I never thought I’d be into. That would be weird.
I know I can do some cool things occasionally, but I picture a profile film being like a full John John-level thing where he does everything under the sun at top levels, ticks every box. This is going to be a profile film on surfing, like, head high lefts. [Laughs]
VP: With Nate, compared to others, he’s got a vision. He knows what he wants — and he wants fun left wedges [laughs]. You’re not going to see him at crowded Snapper Rocks. He’d rather surf a little wedge to himself.
LIKE WHERE HE’S FROM. WEDGES OFF ROCKS, HIDDEN FROM THE WIND. FINDING SICK RAMPS.
VP: We’ll roll up to a spot and the waves are fully closing out but he just knows what shit looks good. It’s like totally a closeout and he just manhandles it and makes it look sick in footage.
HE’S CREATIVE WITH USING THE RESOURCES THAT HE HAS.
VP: Yeah, exactly. I can’t do that.
DO YOU HAVE SOMETHING YOU WANT TO COME THROUGH IN THE PROJECT?
NT: I’m scared to really portray who I am. Maybe it’ll shine through though. Everyone who’s a character in surfing is so generalized. Something that gets put on them sticks with them. At least on the outer shell. There’s nothing I’m out there preaching about or anything.
VP: The funny thing about Nate is he’s kind of the opposite of a hippy [laughs]. He cruises, but he’s super competitive with himself; he’s an over-thinker. One little thing and he’ll over-think it, which just goes to show he cares and wants to deliver something authentic and good.
WHERE DO YOU WANT TO SURF?
NT: The world is small now, it seems. It’s comfortable and you know it and lots of foreign spots almost feel overused. I want to make the world feel big again. There are places we go that people are going to have no fucking clue where they are and I don’t want people to just be able to know where it is.
YEAH, MACARONIS HAS BEEN SEEN QUITE A BIT…
NT: If you go to more adventurous waves, the overall surrounding is so fresh to look at that it takes a lot of pressure too. Say, Macaronis for example, the bar is set so high at a place like that, it’s crazy. If you go to a place with a fresher look it works in your favor.
LIKE A RAIL AT HOLLYWOOD HIGH FOR SKATERS. YOU HAVE TO BUCKLE YOURSELF FOR IT TO EVEN WORK. PEOPLE WANT TO SEE NEW SPOTS. FRESH LOOKS AND LINES.
VP: Exactly. Or if it is a normal wave, you always have to challenge yourself to shoot it differently.
NT: Like Joe G can do. The Macaronis part in Strange Rumblings is my favorite part and I think it’s because of the way he shot it. Could barely tell that’s where it was.
WHO YOU SURFING WITH OR WANT TO SURF WITH?
NT: So far we’ve surfed with Dion, Chippa, Brendon, Creed and Owen Wright.
Surfing with Owen was crazy. I’d met him and stuff and we would say hello, but I’d never hung with him. He’s the exact opposite surfer of me. He’s a fucking surfer. I feel like a burrito standing next to him. He’s about eating well and training, while I’m hunting pastries.
But it was so sick to surf with him. He’s the nicest dude I’ve ever hung out with and he’s genuinely amped. You think a dude at that level, training and second in the world, wouldn’t dream of hanging and surfing with me. But he was psyched and we had a sick time.
VP: I was tripping on Dion too. Filming him is so sick. Obviously I’ve seen him surf, but in person and filming him was something else. Every time he surfs, he gets you so fired up. He’s not the smoothest dude in the world, but he has this energy about him that’s just so sick. He does the raddest punts all over the place. It literally looks like he’s skateboarding. That was pretty sick to watch. Every surfer is just so polished now and it’s like, “I’m never going to surf like that,” but when you watch Dion he makes you feel like you can go out and do it. He’ll, like, hit any section, and he’ll fall a lot, but it makes you feel like you can go out and try that, when you really can’t.
WHAT ABOUT TUNES?
NT: I’d say…dreamy? Can I say that? Dreamy feel. Like that Chromatics track in The End of the River [What Youth short film Victor and Nate collaborated on]. I was playing that in my car when Victor picked me up that day. I’m sure it will be like that. It’s scary to get excited about a song early because it will probably get leaked or used. I live in the woods out here so I could hide one but Victor lives down there in “the zone.”
MUTE will world premiere during the US Open of Surfing at the end of July and will be available for your download and viewing pleasure in August.