Album Surf Twinsman Surfboard Review
Album Surfboards are the newest addition of wave riding crafts to Cleanline’s board racks. One of Album's flagship models is the performance twin fin known as the Twinsman. I was lucky enough to get my hands on a 5’11'' Twinsman, and after several sessions, I’m sold. Below I’ll guide you through a quick introduction of Album’s shaper, Matt Parker, and review what makes the Twinsman stand out from the competition.
Highlights and Features
- Down rail
- Pulled in tail
- Modern rocker
- PU/Poly construction
- Slight concave deck (more foam under the chest)
History of Album Surf Surfboards
Shaped by Matt Parker in the wave-rich beaches of San Clemente, CA, Album boards have undergone rigorous testing by some of the world’s most talented surfers. Parker’s shapes have ascended to the forefront of “alternative” surf crafts with Album surfboards under the feet of twin fin masters such as Asher Pacey and Josh Kerr. The craftsmanship in these boards is obvious, making each Album a functional piece of art.
If you’re interested in reading more about Parker’s history and various surfboard shapes, look at our Album Surfboard Debuts at Cleanline Surf blog.
Album Surf Twinsman
The outline of the Twinsman has striking similarities to Mark Richards's performance twin fins of the 1980’s. The nose is pulled in to prevent catching in steep waves. The tail is also pulled in and utilizes a wing about 12” up from the tips to pull the tail in even more. This design creates a pivot point that allows the board to turn at tighter angles. The similarities between Richards twins and Parker’s Twinsman end there as the rest of the board, from the rocker to the bottom contours, has been modernized.
The Twinsman features a relaxed entry rocker, which allows it to paddle well and catch waves early. The board carries more exit rocker than a traditional fish, allowing it to fit into steeper sections of the wave and surf more top to bottom. A spiral vee concave which consists of a single concave under the front foot transitions into a slight double through the fins and vees off the tail. This contemporary concave helps the board generate speed while simultaneously helping it roll rail to rail seamlessly.
The Album Twinsman gives surfers the best of both worlds. The relaxed entry rocker, coupled with the added foam in the center of the board, allows it to catch any size wave with ease and makes the board paddle like a dream. The classic “get up and go” speed is not lost in this board’s modernization. However, the bottom contours and the thin rail allow the board to hold in solid surf and ride top to bottom like a thruster. In my experience with other Twin Fins, you really need to be cautious not to engage too hard into your bottom turn for fear of sliding out. With the Twinsman, it’s the complete opposite; it almost begs the surfer to bottom turn aggressively and holds its rail when you do so.
Another characteristic that I enjoyed in the Twinsman, unlike other Twinnies, is how well it surfs backside. As a regular foot surfer, roughly 85% of the waves I ride are backside. I have purchased three different Twin boards hoping they would work for me on the backhand and ended up selling them all because I couldn’t figure it out. I was reluctant to give the Twinsman a go, but am glad I did. The board goes amazing on the backhand and does not slide out when pivoting on your bottom turn.
This board will work best in a lined-up wave with some push. Though it will work in the mushy stuff, it really comes alive when you can match the wave's energy. A shoulder-to-head high wave with some power is the sweet spot for this board, though you could definitely take it beyond that with confidence.
Use an upright performance twin fin set to get the most out of the Twinsman. Due to the pulled-in tail and the increased tail rocker, I would stay away from Keel fins as they may limit the board’s performance characteristics. I use the NVS Album Apex Twin, designed by Matt Parker specifically for the Twinsman model. The fins feel amazing and haven’t given me a reason to experiment with anything else.
If you get a board in FCS II, I recommend the Power Twin set. Basically, almost any upright Twin that can hold and pivot in good waves will allow this board to surf the way it was intended to be ridden.
The Twinsman is the best Fish/Twin Fin surfboard I have ever owned. When riding it, there are times you have doubts if you are even on a Twin Fin due to its hold and ability to pivot off the bottom of the wave. However, after a few pumps down the line, you're quickly reminded about the Twinsman’s performance capabilities, and you get up to Mach 6 speed.
I recommend the Twinsman to any immediate to advanced surfer curious about trying a Twin Fin. It’s a good board to transition to if you’re coming off a thruster shortboard. It truly surfs well in a wide variety of conditions. That being said, I would not get this board solely as your groveller but rather as a complimentary piece. It’s worth the money for this functional piece of art!
If you don't see a Twinsman in stock, call us; we may have some on the way or can get a special order going. If you’d like to connect with our team, drop a comment below, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us at 888-546-6176.