Is it weird that two BFF’s should surf so well? Maui life-buddies Matt Meola and Albee Layer have been pushing the envelope on all fronts lately: innovative airs, paddle-in Jaws, wonderful wipeouts, online smack-talk. They surf together. Blog together. Enter Internet competitions together. It might be awkward if it weren’t so rad to watch – both together and apart, these guys are raising the freesurfing bar. They can’t even remember how long it’s been going on. “Matt’s just kinda always been there,” says Albee. “He’s one of my oldest friends.”
That’s super cute and all, but they’d just be two more undiscovered island boys if it wasn’t for the power of this thing called “the Internet”: both surfers blew up on Taylor Steele’s Innersection project (Meola won the first $100k and Albee’s a solid contender for this year’s prize); they tandem-post a blog site together (meolalayerproductions.com); and now, they’re launching their own YouTube buddy-surf web-series, called The Isle.
SURFING: Is this just your way of never having to leave Maui?
MATT MEOLA: I personally think Maui is the best place on earth. We called it “The Isle” because this is where we are from and who we are. We love to travel, but in the winter we have no reason to. There will for sure be episodes where we are traveling and surfing other waves.
SURFING: So, what’s this show about?
MEOLA: The premise of this series is to show the world who Albee and I are. To tell the truth, we don’t like where the sport is going right now, and we want to change it. The level of surfing is being pushed harder than ever, but the image around surfers is going down the drain.
SURFING: And what’s that image?
MEOLA: The stereotypical pro surfer these days are fashion-hungry hipsters who surf mostly small waves and do drone interviews telling everybody exactly what they wanna hear. Albee and I are country boys. I feel like we are not on the same page as a lot of the surfers nowadays. So, in this series we will have the chance to state our opinions. We want everybody to get to know us, not only our surfing. We want to show everybody what the life of a pro surfer from Maui is.
SURFING: So, who exactly is putting this show together?
MEOLA: Albee and I are the main surfers, but we’ve got tons of friends from here that are underground rippers. We wouldn’t be who we are with out the people we hang out with. So, if they rub the camera the right way, you can bet your ass they’re getting a shot.
SURFING: You and Albee seem really close. Is it love?
MEOLA: I once snuck in the bathroom when he was taking a shower and pissed on his leg, but that’s the closest our swords have ever come to crossing.
SURFING: Um, let’s change the subject. You’ve been telling people to vote for Albee’s Innersection over your own — do you think he’s gonna win the $100k?
MEOLA: I’m guessing he’s pretty nervous at this point. Albee isn’t the kind of guy who would want to win if he didn’t deserve it. I feel like his part is a step ahead of them all. Mental theme. Huge paddle-ins. Massive barrels. And some of the most progressive airs ever. Plus, he could probably use the money more than most of the people entered.
SURFING: Will we be seeing much of Willie Nelson and Woody Harrelson on “The Isle”?
MEOLA: I don’t know about that, but Willie’s son Lucas is a good friend and I love his music, so there’s a good chance of him showing up in Episode 2.
Albee and Matt’s “THE ISLE” premieres this week on http://www.rockstar69.com/
Watch the trailer here:
Or just watch this, instead:
“Modern Atlas 2”