Following the death of founding member Adam “MCA” Yauch, it’s been easy to reminisce about the Beastie Boys. Their music has been a constant for the soundtrack of youth culture and adolescent angst over the past few decades (strange to think they’ve been around for that long).

But after (re-)watching many of their old videos, it struck me that “So Wat’Cha Want,” amazingly now twenty years old, seems like it could’ve been recorded a few months ago, and that its visual style (under the direction of Nathanial Hornblower, aka Yauch) seems to be the very definition of snowboard culture.

The clothing the Beasties wear in the video could have come right out of a Burton catalogue. Their mannerisms mimicked by millions. Their music anchoring scores of snowboard movie soundtracks. The combination of rapping over a bass-heavy beat while strutting through a psychedelic forest on some photo negative sunny day still seeming fresh and notable today, some two decades later.

It may appear natural now, but it’s a testament to the wide range of interests and inspirations the Beastie Boys exhibited and incorporated into their work that they were able to so seamlessly appreciate everything from hip-hop to snowboarding to Tibetan Buddhism, all while being authentically true to themselves.

A recent ESPN article describes Adam Yauch as “a snowboarder — a real one,” clarifies Melissa Larsen. “He chose Salt Lake City as a winter base because if he was in the country and saw a storm headed that direction, it was easy to fly to. The places he rented were bare bones, meant only for sleeping and showering and storing the busted-up Subaru he used to get to the mountain.”

Check Your Head was released five years before the first X Games. Back at a time when snowboarding had grown significantly in popularity, but was still an outsider’s snow sport. So the Beasties became an easily and eagerly adaptable expression of snowboard culture, and then youthful ski culture, too.

“Snowboarding was born in youthful resistance to the popular sport of skiing and the values of sport it represents,” Rebecca Heino writes in her essay, “What is So Punk about Snowboarding?” “The media has appropriated the image of youthful rebellion in snowboarding and commodified it.”

Which, of course, isn’t surprising. Authentic edgy styles are mass-produced every day. It is an inevitable by-product of our capitalist society.

Still, it feels different to have witnessed the complete arc of the process.