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Draplin Design Co., North America
December 10, 2006
Posted at 10:47 PM


The Juno shows were great.

Had a great time seeing all the angles, up on stage and back stage. Thanks to Arlie and the boys for access to all of it.

I’ll spare you a blow-by-blow account of what songs were played and all that.

Here’s what happened: Juno reunited and rocked.

There you go. Take my word for it.

Here’s what Juno means to me: When I first met Arlie Carstens, he was a little overwhelming. Full of life and stories and harrowing experiences and band tips and connections and challenges. He seemed to know everyone in the rock world, and, in the little snowboard world I was so entrenched in. Arlie straddled both worlds. That was good to see. A good lesson.

I met Arlie in the summer of 1995, driving him down to Gresham from Government camp so he could get his chin stitched up. He split it open on the coping of the mini ramp. Ouch. We’d talk every couple months after that. I remember him telling me about the beginnings of Juno. I helped out with some t-shirt designs, one of my first rock band gigs. I was honored to be helping out.

Now, fast forward a couple years, and, I’m up in goddamn Anchorage sloggin’ it out on the train, and savoring my days off between runs, tooling around the city. I remember seeing their “This is the way it goes and goes and goes…” album on the stands. The packaging was so slick, it almost seemed like I was looking at another Juno. Up to this point, I hadn’t seen them live, so I didn’t know the tunes.

The album was blistering. It quickly became a summer favorite, and who knows how many dinners or cleaning sessions it got me through on my headphones that summer, working on the train. Great stuff.

What I’m getting at here is, this was the first band, or, first set of characters I knew, that sounded “big” and amazing and real. This was a fucking real full-fledged band, with fucking great tunes that absolutely rocked and didn’t sound even close to naive or hokey or homegrown.

I guess I underestimated my friend, as, all the releases from my friends up to this point were just sort of, uh, albeit endearing and good efforts, were just kinda predictable. Not Juno. No way.

So I fell for those tunes fast, and then that fall in Minneapolis I caught them criss-crossing the states on a couple of their tours. I remember one time seeing them at the Entry with like seven people. The next time was at this joint on 1st Avenue, and their couldn’t have been more than 15 people there, including Ryno and I. But, of course, they rocked, and pushed off after the show to play giant gigs in Boston, DC and New York.

Juno, for me, was a look into how the rock world works. Arlie, always one to spin a hell of a yarn, told me about the recording process, record labels, touring, ticket sales, points, etc. Amazing chats for a rock fan like myself.

It was great to see these guys play again. I guess I still don’t really understand why they never really took off. Those songs just seemed “big and awesome enough” to make it out there. Perplexing.

We hung out back stage, met all the other bands who were playing too. Ted Leo is a nice chap. Those cats put on a rockin’ show.

Brandon and Faz were the guitar techs. I watched the merch nook for an hour here and there. Pretty cool.

Good nights. Thanks to Arlie, Gabe, Jason and Greg for conversation, beers and awesomeness, and, great records.

And to Adrienne, my Los Angeles little sister: See you on the beach, lady.

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Via www.draplin.com & the Juno site, I got onto the Desoto Records site and found this:


Pretty sadly insane. The Barbots succinctly summed it up as a “horribly unfair hand life has dealt,” the great music J. Robbins has delivered via Jawbox, Burning Airlines, and Channels notwithstanding.

Posted by: H.B. on 12/16/06 at 4:04 AM
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