Wednesday the 19th of October.
It's evening, just back from work and still try to fit everything needed in my already to heavy suitcase.
Our new 12" hasn't arrived yet, the printer will send it on the day we leave. Despite the fact that we think about a complicated way to get it deliver over sea I already feel we won't see them on this tour.
Jochem (SAF's sleeve artist) who comes along as road bitch and Dave stay this even at my place. Next morning we gonna take a cab for the 10 minute drive to the airport. Friso and Edje still have faith in the Dutch public transport system and go on their own to the airport.
Thursday the 20th of October
6 Am, alarm clock, panic, walking zombie, fast shower wake up the guy's with my morning sounds, telephone rings, cab is already standing in front of the house, 10 minutes later we are on our way in the limo towards the airport. Still fighting to stay awake, but knowing that we really go on tour keeps me very alive.
Spot on we arrive at Schiphol and go right away for our quest to find Friso and Ed. Friso was already waiting for us and after a funny telephone call with Edje we told him we where sitting in a bar and monitor him the complete conversation.
For me this was the first time ever to fly, I was really a nitwit at the whole thing: Checking in, passport stuff, x-ray fun moments twice, already talking English, tax free shit that actually isn't, all the people and the enormous complex that Schiphol is. It was a lot on the early morning. At the end seeing the plane gave me actually for the first time the idea that I really was gonna fly. I was really looking forward to it.
To be honest, all the stories of people about flying are for me a bit exaggerated. Cause it was all smooth and funny. Only ones I felt a bit strange in my tummy.
We arrived perfect on time at Liverpool airport. Before we knew it we had a problem. Maybe some of you knew that on our last tour Edje his bag got stolen. Well this time somebody took his bag instead of his own, leaving Edje with a bag contain some way to big undies. As the good people we are we went to department of missing bags and explained the whole thing. We agreed to keep contact. Little did we know than that Edje would'nt see his bag until Hull (a week later!).
Waiting a bit depressed but still eager to start the tour Rich arrived with his massive van. Some hugs, some laughs and we drove to greenest city of Europe and chilled in and around his house.
We agreed to rehears a little bit in the afternoon so we get used to the Bickle's cab back line that we could use on tour. TWe didn't play that good, but I knew this evening it would go smooth and fast as hell so no worries but only a little discomfort.
We had to carry the back line from a top floor. This meant we had to take some really freaky stairs, some near death experience moments for almost all of us there.
When we arrived at the venue we saw a police car with some people in it being questioned. Later we found out that it where the guys from Hangover Heart Attack and they hit some silly cycle dude. Somehow it was funny, can't remember why actually!
F.B.H. was the first band for this evening. Some bickle's cab members. A raw and nice mix of thrash, d-beat and screamo, not bad at all. We all noticed that something changed in Sheffield since last time, for the better that is. People entered the venue psyched for the gig big time, it was clear it would be a great evening with great bands
Last time I saw the Narcotix they still had a frontman, now it was a three piece. Again they impressed me big time, damn they are so good. Hope to see a lot more from them in the future.
Than the guys from hangover heart attack started doing there grind power violence assault, also some great sludge parts where there. People really went mental now. With the wall of dead their singer split his head open, everywhere blood, it looked like a slaughterhouse. Cool!
Our tour buddies from the Pacifists where on now. Still fast as fuck and great to see, I get a bit nervous by now cause all the bands where so good. Also start feeling that I woke up 5 hours earlier than usual on a weekday, but the scenery kept me well awake.
So SAF's kick off. sweet mother of satan and stuff. People where really going for it. P.A. stack dives, circle pits, wall of dead and just crazy people from the start till the end. This was the best we could have as a first gig, we love Sheffield. It only could go dow from there!
After the gig it went fast, dropping some people at their home and arrived at Rich and Elaine their place and went straight to bed...
Friday the 21st of October
Together with a bunch of Bickle's Cab people we where on our way to a music shop in Doncaster. Dave needed a stand for his guitar and I found a 2nd hand cymbal. The others made purchases at a nearby record shop and so we had with all our new goodies a show and tell moment on our way towards Leeds.
Arriving at Mez his place found him work his ass off with the cooking and the others off the Pacifists sitting on their behinds watching a terrible talk show with that last James Bond dude. Dunno if it was only me, but I was quite occupied by his facial hair!
After a nice warm meal and a Simpson episode we where ready to thrash. We played this evening again with Hangover Heart Attack, they would play that week 3 times this venue!? Also playing where Feeding Frenzy. With Murphy from Hell as front man they had a strange but top amusement value.
The pacifist where fast and crazy. I love these guy's.
Burning the prospects from Boston (not Boston) where up next. Pfff they blew me away, hard Tragedy is Gone style post crust, a very good band indeed.
We played kinda okido but after the mayhem in Sheffield it felt kinda quiet. Still the people at the venue where enjoying the bands and we met up with a lot of old and new friends.
Saturday the 22nd of October
We crashed for the night at Ol's place in the posh town of Harrogate. Next day was filled with Playstation games and a touristic highlight: the Brimming rocks. The rocks where kinda cool, we felt a bit like the guys from Marduk in that clip running over the mountains!
The venue where they normally hold gigs had a double booking so we where banned to this fancy pub a mile down the road.
The Letdown with Ol on drums opened with a great fast, faster over the top power violence set.
Next up Billy Idols spazztic nephew's band 'General Waste'. I actually can only remember that guy cause he was so up front all the time. It was very streetpunk.
As if it couldn't go more Spazztic than it was, Charley proofed to be very much in his element. Over the top, fast, tide as fuck with the Pacifists this evening.
Again with the Hangover boys. for them also the best out of three. A territorial statement was made when they pushed with the noise all the people to the back and claimed the dance floor.
We where again 5th, lot's of the young kids where drunk as fuck and this old man was already getting tired.. again. Most response came from the fellow knights of the DIY to the core brotherhood but the gig had a good feel, so I won't bitch around.
After the gig there was the great plan to go to the local gay bar. Somehow it turned not to be so organized as it sounded. It was after closing time and we where with a group of 25. Maybe it all was for the best cause some of the homophobic jokes where getting seriously heavy.
Sunday the 23rd of October
The longest but supposed to be nicer rides of the tour, Harrogate to Aberdeen. Great scenery on this way, but not today. Pissing rain and foggy sky from the start till the end. Still seeing the William Wallace memorial tower was kinda cool.
At 5:30 pm we arrive and see that the venue is called East Neuk. Neuk translated to Dutch means fuck, so especially I had lot's of fun about it.
The venue was massive and everywhere where decorations from a earlier engagement party which was fun. After Ed, Dave and Jochem where lost in the old city we where off for some food on location. Back again at the venue it was already crowded, rock a billy's, crusties, head bangers and teenage girls that looked to be for the first time at a heavy DIY gig.
Tribe started to play their 'Deviated Instinct' kinda slow crust with some 'beat down' feel a like parts and almost everybody still where sitting as if the bingo could start any moment. Slowly the people get off their butts and walked to the front to see what was going on.
The pacifists did a proper gig. Charley still mental as fuck and the band fast and tide.
I missed them in the Netherlands but now no escape from Scotland's finest grind posse Filthpact. Traditional crusty grind played very energetic for their home crowed.
We played a tide, fast and great set. People liked it and hit the dance floor with great moves learned from instructional video's that probably only are distributed in the UK.
Afterwards a great fun little party on the 15th floor of an Aberdeen flat with booze, fun, slayer, hardcore holocaust compilation and loads of bad jokes.
Monday the 24th of October
A good night sleep and of course shitty weather on our way towards Glasgow.
Dunno if it was the weather, but Glasgow was in my memory a bit more exiting that it felt this time! We took a few beers while Edje was buying underwear and shortly after that met up with Mick and went first for some nice and heavy spiced food.
The gig was at this arty fart communistic pub with of course very communistic prices for their drinks! Somehow everybody got so pissed that I actually started to feel uncomfortable being sober, but loads of fun moments on this evening kept it going in to a good direction.
First band start playing when there where still people in the pub drinking their fancy girly drinks. It somehow took them a few songs before the actually fucked off but with doing that we actually where left with not more than 20 people.
The pacifists where a lot of fun, they had some strange fuck ups but kicked ass big time.
Cause everybody being drunk as fuck nobody actually noticed my fuck ups while playing, so that's a good thing! We had some human pyramids and other kodak moments and fuji film tips.
Tuesday the 25th of October
Woke up kinda late but still enough time to get to Dundee for the last gig in Scotland.
We parked the car at the edge of the city where we had some recreative, alcoholic, sporty and social moments. Rich made some great food on his little burner and not that much later Roddy and his mate showed up to take us for Sega games, music and food on location. Again beans, those people in the UK love beans, but it tasted good so I won't bitch.
We played for a change not on the 1st floor of a pub but in the basement.
Not that much people showed up, but great fun we had again. We played with a Manowar type of band that actually was not that bad for a Manowar type of band. In the Netherlands these bands play at least more than a hour they just played nicely a 30 minute set. Also an emo / punkrock band was playing. I was not really in the mood so missed them a bit, feel now a bit bad about it!
V.P. such good tour mates so much fun and again tide and fast.
For some odd reason the SAF gig was really great pyramids again, slamming shouting... This mentality remain at the apartment where we all chrashed. It was fun in Dundee.
Wednesday the 26th of October
From Dundee to New-Castle. We felt like going the tourist way and visit the little coast town 'Eyemouth' where at the local amusement hall kids gamble their nuts off; lost tourist slack around the little streets; Rich and Friso made some food; Dave, Ed and Mez going for the cliffs; me and Jochem adjust with the tourist slack way of life; Charley,Tommy two shoes, Ol and Kate walking the beach. Yes it was a typical Eyemouth kinda day!.
After this peaceful family moment New-Castle rush hour was terrible torture, but with Rich Cab being the man of the tour we arrived save and sound.
Their was a lovely 2 quid pasta meal waiting for us. That Stu really knows how to spoil his guests. Somehow I ate more than two plates I think.
For a change the pacifists started. With Ol and Mez pretty drunk it was kinda fun to see them play. Ed played for the first time Limpwrist's "I love hardcore boy's" with them, as a trade we got Mez to be 'Les Claypool' on Skate and Destroy.
Fucked That with Stu singing was up next. A very strange but entertaining combination of musicians, it gave me a bit of a 'de Waonzin' feeling. The music was something else thought, double vocals grind fast sludge grunt scream kinda. Fun moment #1; Stu passing his mic to someone in the audience cause he couldn't be bothered, right away starts playing his inflatable guitar. Fun moment #2: while the rest of the band is playing a hyper fast song, 1 of the 2 guitarists just standing bored, eating a candy bar and not playing the song.
Than it was up to the fast dark screamo of Jinn. Some sarcastic remarks towards the audience cause they where a bit more interested in the football match two blocks away from the pub that was broadcast live on the tube downstairs. Besides that, a blast of a band, think it won't be the last time you've heard of them.
SAF played kinda good, but people stayed a bit on their spot. It was fun people shouting "boooo's" and "fuck off remarks". Stu going mental on some of the new songs was great to see.
Seeing after the gig infront of the pub all the drunk people was kinda cool. And the girls, I was almost freezing dunno what they all drunk to stay warm with so less clothing around them. Weird New-Castle chicks! We stayed at this nice house from the people of Fuck That and I watched some Candlemass live concert and fell asleep with Toxic Adventure saving traumatown.
Thursday the 27th of October
Woke up on this nice warm day and checked New-Castle, came home watched the Muppet show and off we went to Hull.
Arrived after an annoying rush hour ride at the venue. Until Joe came (with Edjes back) some punx being our company. One of them was asking these goofy questions like do you know this band and this one. And he kept naming these complete unknown bands for us even from the Netherlands, it felt kinda Twilight Zone cause it seemed never ending. It was good fun.
1st Band of the evening played their insecure debut. These really young lads played also a DYS song so that was cool.
Lot's of young people tonight I even recognized some MYspace 'friends'!
The Letdown played just like the Pacifist a great fast gig, respect for the self claimed most lovable chap from Harrogate.
It was good to see Feeding Frenzy again cause they played way better than in Leeds. Murphy went back to nature and showed all his chubby shapes while preform little dance moves from the earlier mentioned instructional video's that's only distribute in the UK.
It was good to see Bickle's Cab on this tour. Thought Rich was really looking tired behind the kid it sounded great. Hope to see them soon again.
The venue had a full PA system and this was actually not needed. It also gave some serious problems with the sound on "stage". We kept our smiles and finnish the set with a bit of a 'tour stress' moment but than noticed we played tide and fast so we felt good again.
After the gig we drove to Kate's house where I claimed the big sofa when the rest had a sweet little after party.
Friday the 28th of October
This is Boston (not Boston), play fast or somewhere else. Some claims from Boston crazy 'Gummo' punx posse. It supposed to be a great gig from the start.
It was Halloween's fancy dress party, come as a pop star was on the invitation. So SAF didn't had to think long and came as German metal band!
We played today besides Burning the Prospects also with fellow Dutch rockers the Last Mile and Ironcage. It was fun seeing them walk into the venue, you know you're on the bill together, but still it's kind of a surprise seeing Dutch people so far away from home!?
Anyway, at Marv's place we had pasta and some play time with his new puppy dog. Soon after that we rushed to the venue and saw that people really dressed up big time for the party. Bono, Billy Idol, B-boy's, Madonna, Thrash chick, Baby Spice, they where all there.
Burning the Prospect kicked off with a impressive wall of sound. I was stoked to see them again and knowing I also would see them the next day.
Ironcage started fast as fuck, but than got technical problems. This together with the way to ill front man (I don't mean the corpse paint!) made the gig not what it could have been.
The Last Mile blasted their set tide as a mother fucking G and besides the point that the Last Mile might be a bit to much emo for Boston, the people already started with their spazztic boston copyright dance moves. One of the better Dutch bands at the moment.
Cause the Valhalla Pacifists played their last gig of the tour in Hull, they where only in Boston for the moral support (or the party!?). We decide that despite the fact they played Boston only a few weeks before they had to play a little set over our set up. This was so great Mez was a girly pop artist but looked like a man with a dress and a wig, Tommy two shoes was an original b-boy, Charley was famous aids victim Freddy Mercury and Ol was a white kid who thought he was black. After their first song where people went menta, Charley announced the last song, that Limpwrist one with Edje. People went so nuts on this one, that was great to see. Straight after that Dave plugged in, Friso get the mic. and his German accent and me sitting behind the kit. Time to thrash.
We tried to start with 'we will rock you' mixed into ' struggle against fascism' just like on our "Dead Area Paranoia" 12". This time with Freddy on Vocals. It didn't worked out super but the 'we will rock you' was there!
Fucking crazy people their in Boston, pyramids, circle pits, dive's, theatrical move's around Dave's solo's, tranny guest appearance by Mez, Bono as ringleader for the massive insults to us it just was like we hoped for. The ink of our earlier made German metal tattoo's kinda faded over our complete bodies and obviously gave us a 10% more change on some interesting skin decease. This together with the rash from the wigs gave us another long lasting souvenir besides the video and the photo's.
SAF stayed at Marv's place and I tried to get some sleep right away. But it was hard with the Puppy walking on my head all the time.
Saturday the 29th of October
A traditional wake up call by Marv's 5 years old daughter Charley scared the shit out of Jochem and actually all of us. She was screaming, jumping, sitting and rolling on him, than on me, took a few laps around the room and as the good hyperactive girl she was, the 5 minute ritual continued with the trademark 'show you're ass to all the guest' move. Somehow it felt quite disturbing, like a never ending wake up moment. But when you are in another country you take all those little bits of exotic culture with it. So was also a vomiting Bono in the garden a pleasant experience while we had our breakfast.
On our way to Bradford my fresh first shave on tour in combination with a soapy shower was a big contrast with the others, but it didn't effect the tour feel what so ever only one remark "Damn you smell fresh, bleuurghh".
I already mentioned, but with Rich driving it's been great everyday, he knows the venue's, the roads, the traffic, the people. Also this time driving in Bradford straight away to the famous 1 in 12 club. The closer we get the more crusty people slack around, we arrive at the dead end street where the club is located and see that the size of the complex pretty impressive. We played on the 2nd day of this 3 day 'means to an end' fest.
Somehow I was dead tired and hardly could open my eye's. It sucks cause loads of people we knew where there and it was a great finishing day for the tour.
Typical thing to notice was that we play a crust fest. and for the first time in the UK we witness bands are to late. It kinda funny right? Steve asked us to play a bit earlier as planned, we didn't mind. It went a bit hush hush but finally we're setting up the stuff after 30 minutes of waiting and Burning the Prospect opened the day already an Hour ago. Cause of our mate's from the Pacifist where also there it just made common sense that they also would play a few song. So after all we played all 10 gigs together and it felt complete. Funny moment was that Dave somehow manage to pull the plug from the Amp when Tommy was playing his aggressive signature Harrogate nu-core power cords. I guess Dave was also a bit tired.
The sound in the 1 in 12 is amazingly good, on stage thought it's a bit different. I had a 3 food high monitor besides the kit, but it didn't work. Knowing our selves when it comes to full P.A. / stage gigs we just start played and hoped for the best, didn't went that bad I thought!
So tired but with a great feel we left to Leeds somewhere after Oi Polloi played. There at Mez his house we had the little sweet say good by party with the Pacifists. As the tosser I am, went to bed early again.
Sunday the 30th of October
Very last day, no long drives, no ferry's this was by far our most luxurious tour ever. I even didn't had to set up or build off the drum kit, didn't matter if I wanted to do it, Rich already was busy with it before I knew.
At the airport in Liverpool I really felt we wanted all to go home again, it was a fun tour but knowing 'normal live' would start the next day made us focus on that I guess.
This tour was a great one again and will keep some great memories. We want to thank Rich for being such a nice bloke, the Valhalla Pacifists and Kate, Bickle's Cab for being there and the great back line we could use, Jochem for the moral support, all the bands, the people who cooked for us, the people where we could crash, the promoters, the people who where there at the shows. It was just great, cheers.