“Constructive Destruction” represents a first effort for me as a professional video maker. Filled with friends I still cherish and skate spots I still dream about, it’s hard not to watch even given some of its terribly embarrassing flaws (yikes voiceover). It holds a place in my heart similar to space usually reserved for ex-girlfriends, but I don’t think we’ve broken up. Twelve years on, skateboarding and I have worn into ourselves at a mutual pace, the sign of any good relationship. Enjoy our honeymoon.”
Mike Leins was such a joy to skate with. He was one of those guys who’d come SO close to a lot of stuff, but the stars just weren’t aligned for the roll away I guess… I describe this in past tense because I really don’t know what he’s up to these days. Kevin Barnett had his shit together – he was pretty anal at times, but that helped him be successful… he’s a great filmer with a vast knowledge of spots. I was always jealous of his f/s feeble skills. Look at him now – have you seen Toy Machine’s “Brainwash?” What a great video. Yes, he films for Toy Machine and he used to film for 411 – he’s the one that got all of us in 411 – mostly between #49-53, if my memory serves correct (Sam, Robin, Nick, Adrian, and myself – probably more but I can’t remember at the moment). He also got some of us in “Bail Section #2,” a video part you could watch after reaching a certain level in “Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4″ – some great slams. Thanks so much for showing the world a skateboard flying in my face at the bottom of brass gap! Just kidding, Kevin. I appreciate what you did for us.
This park was THE SHIT to us back in the day. This was a great introduction to it through video documentation. Dirty Al is insane.
“Jeremy Raab has killed it since pressure flips were hot. Dude had an appreciation for tech skating way before it was redefined by Fully Flared. He never stopped loving skateboarding’s so called “dark ages” but he was never the goofy boy stuck in the past either. Jeremy can kill a curb but he has never been strictly a curb-dweller. He gets buck on the big stuff too. I will never forget watching him drop from a head high ledge straight to his head. No one who has ever seen that footage will. Jeremy never had an easy go when it came to getting sponsored. I think he might have been one of the last dudes to get on the Let It Ride team, at least during the filming for Constructive Destruction. I know he only got to film a handful of times for the video. The part is short but sweet. No one does switch boardslide to 270 out better than J Bone. He did get a few packages and Spitfire printed Jeremy’s sponsor me letter as an ad in Slap but didn’t put him on the team. He put a lot of effort into designing the letter, making sure that it looked just right. It had a hyperbolic statement about how rad Spitfire wheels are and several photos. It was Xeroxed and looked really cool. They added the logo and a tag line “The choice of the underground,” which probably sums up Jeremy pretty well. He never got the recognition that his skating deserved but he has never stopped skating either, like underground skaters everywhere. ”
– James Wilson
This is such a great part. Ben Clumsky’s style reigns supreme. I tackled the slabs, Ryan Minnick does huge melons off rocks, Kenton and Abel slay it – it was so many kids’ (including myself) first time being in a skate video – such an exciting time. Mike Wexler with his blunt heelflips, etc. BJ West might have had the most footage in here. He was like a God to us. Kickflip noseblunting the tiny hubba? Backside noseblunting the rail? Then you had Shawn Boyles with straight up tech-gnar and Nick Reynolds with his tall ass 50-50’s and such. Jamie Thomas grinded the super long rail he grinds and boardslides in here, but Nick did it first.
Catch it and stick with it boy! This is Robin’s first part ever, and it’s super good. Him and Sam Smith were inseparable and both had such amazing board control for their age – you can tell they really pushed each other. And yes, he was always “bobbin’ around,” which is one of the more memorable lines that Little Adam chose to draw comparisons with in Aaron Chilen’s “The Nicey-Nice-Nice Project,” a video that poked fun of this one and came out soon after…
“The biggest thing I remember was being super intimidated to go out and film with Kevin. I was just Sam’s summer tag a long friend at the time and had just started going out and skating with the “Let it Ride” guys. I guess from the perspective of a 14-15 year old kid that was really all I ever wanted. I didn’t think I had enough footage for a full part, so naturally, I was pretty excited when I found out there was gonna be one for me. That was and is a definite gem in my personal timeline.”
“Aron Fletcher just seemed to appear one day and likewise, he just seemed to disappear. At first sight you knew he was a ripper. He would sometimes ask if a certain trick would be hard or not but regardless the answer he would break down how to do the trick and then do it. Aron would not accept defeat. He once ripped open his ball sack but continued to try the trick, eventually ending up with two makes. Aron and Kevin lived together for much of the filming of Constructive Destruction. They fed off of each other. They both were dedicated to making the best video possible and using it to reach their goals. We all know Kevin reached his goal. He is one of the top video guys in the world and I’m pretty sure he will keep striving for more. Aron, however, is a different story. Anytime a conversation drifts toward Aron, people ask “what happened to that dude?” There are plenty of stories, perhaps the craziest being that he rode a bicycle to Seattle. Another is that he got fired from a job for feeding a homeless man. There is even a random Ron Paul YouTube video with a cameo of him making a crazy face at the camera. Whatever happened to make him walk away from skateboarding is a mystery. Somebody may know the answer and if you do please share.” – James Wilson
“This was an exciting time for me. This was my first “real” video part and it was a thrill to be a part of the Let It Ride team I so idolized. It was a special time in Kansas City skateboarding when this video came out because no one had really blown up yet. Kansas City was still sort of an unknown, secret gem in the skateboarding world, yet so full of raw talent. Everyone else was just about to take notice. I think I was 14 or 15 when most of this video was filmed. I must have been because Kevin would drive way the hell out of his way to pick me up and go skate.
I mostly think about Kevin when I see Constructive Destruction. It was his. He took himself seriously and worked damn hard on it and I always admired that. He gave me a lot of interesting ideas for tricks too (kick flip into bank and duck under semi trailer) that really helped make the part a lot more interesting, instead of just a kid jumping down shit. He really pushed and encouraged me to keep getting better and better and I owe much of my relative “success” to him. Thanks Kevin. If I’m ever in California I’ll buy you a beer.”
Every great skate video’s got some sort of “feel good review,” and this one is no exception. Gotta love old Weezer. The two trailers are sweet too. Those are Aron Fletcher’s balls. Go to “Big Red” on 6th and Lawrence… the indention in the handrail is still there. This video helped get Kevin Barnett to where he’s at today, which is pretty fucking rad if you ask me.