It’s easy to look over the Fallen team and continue to see that rail chomper image embedded in your head but you should know one thing before continuing to think that way, they’re working on it. Fallen has taken a deep initiative to change things up without any fear towards the next step. With rumors of new silhouettes such as a skateable runner, a tech high top & a soccer inspired model coming in the near future, they seem to be taking an initiative to broaden their direction and as a result, their market. Recently, core brands have been getting the reputation of not being able to keep up with the financial capabilities of those companies with larger pockets. This may certainly be the case but the undeniable fact of the matter is that their materials haven’t suffered as a consequence. When reading this review, you’ll notice our praise for Fallen’s new direction, new technology and more so, the durability of the Seventy Six from Tom Asta.
This review was done slightly different than our month long format in the past. We actually were only able to complete 15 hours of skating instead of our traditional 20 hours due to other projects. Regardless of the fact, you’ll still get a good idea of how long and how well the shoe skated based on our review. Enjoy.
The Fallen Seventy Six fits comfortably on most feet. This is especially true if you’ve been an avid reader of our reviews because you’ll know that I don’t have a narrow foot. It’s fat and large but somehow I manage to convince my girlfriend to sleep with me. Okay, I was clearly thinking of something else so let’s try to move on. The Fallen Seventy Six can accommodate most feet and is true to size. The seemingly narrow toe wasn’t that at all. It so happens that the shape and contour of the shoe perfectly lines up with your toes. We never felt any abrasion that would cause blistering to your sides or toes.
Because it is a shoe with padding throughout, you could always go ahead and get a half size larger for extra comfort purposes. This is only recommended if your feet have a tendency to swell after long days of skating or from just personal preference.
Short Answer: True to Size.
Comfort & Cushion
If you’re looking for some extra comfort from a skate shoe without the overwhelming feeling of hotfoot, the Seventy Six has a perfect balance of padding and breathability. Even though the shoe continually cups your foot, at no point did we get a sweaty foot or experience excessive warmth. This is due to the equal amount of cushioning and mesh surrounding the collar of the shoe, tongue and even along the paneling. It’s almost odd skating a shoe with actually padding after conforming to what shoe brands have been putting out recently. It’s definitely something you’ll readjust to but afterwards ask yourself how you ever strayed.
Another element that adds to the comfort and cushioning of the Fallen Seventy Six is the “Flexology” (FLX) midsole construction. Fallen recently introduced it’s FLX technology and it’s been very popular among consumers. The FLX construction uses a lightweight eva midsole that provides cushioning ideal for high impacts and still allows all the boardfeel you’d need throughout your forefoot. To make things even better, the heel stabilizer adds even more support than you’d expected to make this Fallen’s most technical shoe to date. Now, I know that all of this might sound like some scientific rambling but I know for a fact that the designers at Fallen have worked tirelessly on every detail of the shoe. It most definitely shows. All of the small details and inner workings of the shoe portion everything out to conform to any kind of skating. The shoe could literally handle whatever you throw at it.
Comfort: 10. It’s almost difficult not to make a shoe that feels good nowadays. The eva midsole was the perfect proportion and didn’t flatten out. The shoes padding makes you feel protected at all times but doesn’t put a damper on your skating by being too overbearing.
Cushioning: 8. The Seventy Six has the right balance of cushioning and feel. We’re suckers for throwback puffy tongues but this was the right balance between modern & paying homage.
Boardfeel & Grip
Normally with a hard based rubber like the 400 nbs, there are instances where you lose more than you gain. Sometimes, the outsole is too hard and can cause some easy slippage while skating and this ultimately leads to burning out the outsole faster than you would the toe. With the FLX & herringbone pattern together, this isn’t the case. The outsole easily distributes feeling throughout and breaks-in the Seventy Six on the first day without a problem. Also, if you’ve analyzed the outsole, you’ll notice that small circle sitting towards the very top around the forefoot. This is a stabilizer of sorts. The circle, surrounded by two outer rings, sits directly underneath the ball of your foot. This in turn allows you to be quicker on your feet because the ball of your foot is ensured the best stability when needed to react to tricks. I truly believe this is substantial evidence because flip-tricks came pretty easily with the Seventy Six and if you’ve ever seen Tom skate, he’s motherfucking quick. Also, it’s ideal for us to be skating a shoe of this caliber because we like skating padded shoes on our off time from reviews. This was unquestionability one of the reviews where everything felt perfect because this is what we, personally, look for in a skate shoe.
Because the Seventy Six does break-in right away, you can only assume that the grip is going to come correct. The grip factor of the shoe is excellent for one small but essential reason. You see, the herringbone pattern isn’t all that average as it may seem. As meticulous as this may sound, we looked and compared other tradition herringbone patterns outsoles from other brands to the Fallen Seventy Six and noticed that the distance between each tread mark in the Seventy Six is quite far in comparison. With this additional space in between, you could obviously feel more without sacrificing durability. It sounds so simple but seriously, no one has been this detailed in ages which is why the standard in skate shoes has been getting lower and lower throughout the years. It’s these simple changes that undeniably separate actual designers from companies just looking to pump out the next hot look.
Boardfeel: 10. Try it, you’ll understand and agree.
Grip: 10. With a unique & detailed take on a traditional herringbone pattern, what number seems more fitting. FLX works & lasts.
As stated above, harder rubbers burn out slightly quicker so naturally I was surprised that after 15 hours of skating, there were very little signs of wear or abrasion. Shimmying your foot does come natural when skating whether you realize it or not. I’m guilty of this as well from trying to emulate one of my favorite skaters but regardless, let me explain why the outsole didn’t shed. With all of our reviews, we’ve always been a huge advocate for deeper tread marks. It’s something we’ve recommended in most of our STI based reviews and others hoping that someone in the industry would listen. This time, we seriously feel as though our prays rants have been finally answered with Tom’s shoe. (Disclaimer: We’re not taking credit for nothing, just extremely hyped nonetheless) The deeper tread marks in the Seventy Six are primarily why this shoe won’t die out without a fight, everything else just compliments the best solution to a timeless problem.
Now that you know that the outsole held up amazingly, it’s time to let you in on the one piece toe detail. This one is no different than most on the market because it’s got a inner rubber lining between the fabric and the suede. This is becoming more and more of a staple in every skate brand producing one piece toe caps as a means to stand a chance in today’s market. I can’t specify what type of rubber it is but I do know that some brands have the capability of using TPU material. This TPU is the type of rubber that military forces use to construct their safety rafts. It could withstand any piercing, is resilient to damage and doesn’t deteriorate easily. Again, we couldn’t say whether this is what they used on the inside of the toe, although we didn’t ripped through the suede that easily so you could only speculate. In any event, just be happy to know that the suede held up beyond our expectations and that even after you get through it, you have to deal with a heavy duty layer of rubber.
Durability: 10. Even though it wasn’t put through 5 more hours to complete our traditional 20 hour review, after carefully assessing the signs of wear, this shoe could probably last between 35-40 hours of skating in total. If we were to skate it any longer, the review probably wouldn’t have been released until August.
As a review site, we’ve made it our responsibility to let you, the consumer, know what will work for you during tough financial times. Currently, the market for skate shoes is a large one and even though the U.S. was subjected to the most devastating financial period since the great depression, I still see kids ripping up $80-$100 skate shoes on a daily basis. The Fallen 76 is sitting at a $69.95 price point on most online stores and with skate shops trying to stay in direct competition, they’ve dropped their in-store prices even lower to keep kids coming back. If you’re questioning whether the Seventy Six is for you or not, keep the following into consideration:
1. You’ll be able to save some significant amount of money when buying these continuously.
2. The shoe is supporting one of the hardest working skaters & core brands in the business.
3. As much as you have doubted it, core brands durability is starting to match those of Nike SB, Adidas and other giants of the skate industry.
Even after this review, if the Fallen Seventy Six just isn’t a shoe for you or simply doesn’t appeal to the look you’re going for, at least know that it’s from a brand made from the ground up by skateboarders for skateboarders and more so, this shoe lasts.
Special thanks to everyone at Black Box Dist. for making this review possible. Major shout out to Nick Pappas, Chad Foreman & Jason Rothmeyer.