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ISSUE 115 VOL 21 PUBLISHED 5/10/2002

Fully stocked crowd: Liars and Saints, Ozomatli perform for students

By Molly Bayrd
Contributing Writer


Friday, May 10, 2002

Sun. Music. People. Who could ask for anything more? The 2002 Arbstock festival, held May 4 near the Carleton College Arboretum, delivered nothing short of what former students have dubbed as "the best time of the school year." With five bands playing eclectic sets to an abundance of students from both Carleton and St. Olaf, the promise of a good time for those in attendance was most certainly fulfilled.

Kicking off the musical entertainment was St. Olaf's very own Liars and

Saints, who performed at last year's Arbstock along with such notable acts as Reel Big Fish and campus favorite Mason Jennings.

Following Liars and Saints in Saturday's lineup was Carleton's campus band Shilmob, local bluegrass group Backroads Junction, Twin-Cities performer Mark Mallman, and Ozomatli. Ozomatli's set, the last of the day, kept the attention of the restless crowd. Said Kirsten Lynd ’02 of Ozomatli's performance, "I thought they did a smashing job. It was worth the wait."

Though Liars and Saints opened to a less-than-substantial crowd during the noon hour, band-member Rusty Zaspel ‘02 was still pleased with the audience's response. "We got a positive response from all ten people that were there when we played!" Zaspel said. "People were still getting their stuff situated on the lawn so we had a small crowd, but we were just glad to be playing outside this year," he said, noting that last year's Arbstock was held indoors. When asked why Liars and Saints was the first to perform, Zaspel said, "Last year, Carleton's band,Gratuitous Um Laut, had to go first, so this year a St. Olaf act had to perform first."

Rather than modify their set list for the atypically mixed Carleton and Olaf crowd,

Liars and Saints played several of their signature tracks in order to promote themselves to the diverse audience. "We played pretty much our same set because we just wanted to convey what the band was about. We wanted to be ourselves," said Zaspel. "We did one cover to get everyone in-volved, and after that we wanted to keep it generally upbeat because everyone seemed in the mood to get down, or fall down [from students taking advantage of Carleton’s more lenient alcohol policy]," he jested.

Despite unpleasantly cool winds and noticeably long restroom lines at the site of the event, Arbstock 2002 was still generally acknowledged as being a huge success.

"I feel that Arbstock truly embodied the Northfield spirit of small-town revelry," beamed Chris Messinger ‘05. Ryan Petros ‘03 had similar thoughts on the ambiance at Arbstock: "I think it's great that St. Olaf students have the opportunity to cut loose and just go wild and crazy once a year."

With an area for dancing near the performance stage and a wide expanse of lawn upon which to mingle, Arbstock provided a comfortable arena for the annual social gathering. In addition, because Carleton is a wet campus, students over 21 were able to bring and consume alcoholic beverages during the daylong concert. "It was nice to be able to sit back and just have a beer while we watched the bands. The Arbstock crowd is pretty laid back," said Lynd.

Rusty Zaspel strongly agreed with Lynd's commentary on Arbstock's peaceful atmosphere, but had one piece of advice to offer to next year's crowd. "To Carleton students, it has always just been called the ‘Spring Concert’. Do not call it ‘Arbstock’ in front of any of them - they hate it!" Zaspel warned.





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