Thursday, January 21, 2010

Stuttgart

The dreaded alarm clock went off bang on time. Steve Perry singing ”Wheel in ther Sky” greeting me out my short lived slumber..

I actually didn't feel too bad considering the lack of sleep. I wasn't hungover so that helped. I think the other guys in the band, except Ronnie, were probably a little worse off. The first thing I see upon waking is the sight of Andy climbing down from his top bunk in nothing but his kecks, which are half way down his ass. He seems to be attempting to climb down from his bed facing forwards. Just as I'm thinking that it seems like an unneccesarily difficult way of getting out of bed, he indeed trips and falls right into a set of steel lockers that are stood against the wall oppostie his bed, making an almighty crash in the process. This gets my day of to a laughing start.

I force myself out of bed and into the shower and then head downstairs to tuck into the breakfast we'd smelt being made a few hours earlier. We sit around drinking coffee, trying to wipe the red out of eyes. It's another long journey today, so I'm hoping for sleep in the van. That doesn't happen though. For a start trying to sleep bent double on half a van bench is not so easy. Secondly, Jon, who has quite obviously awoken drunk, is up front in the van and being very vocal. I'm lying in the back listening to him rabbiting on. I love him dearly, but the boy is mental at times.

We're snaking our way out of the Berlin early morning traffic. We get to a junction and realise we have to make a right turn and we're in the wrong lane. The lights are on red and it's jam packed with cars and nobody seems to want to move for us. Jon winds down his window and starts shouting in Swedish at some miserable looking bastard in the car beside us. The guy obviously doesn't understand exaclty that Jon is telling him we need to get in front of him. He doesn't look like he gives a fuck either. The lights turn green and Miserable Cunt goes to shoot forward to block us, but his cars jerks to a halt as he's obviously stalled his engine. It looks like he gets quite a shunt too! We all piss ourselves laughing whilst Ronnie cuts in in front of him. Better still the fucker then gets stuck again as the lights quickly go back to red. I'd like to think we ruined the guys morning.

Jon continues to make a racket as we make our way out of the city. He's decided that instead of facing the impending hangover, he's just gonna drink through it. He'd cracked open a bottle of beer before we even left our room this morning, and now he's drinking Fernet straight out the bottle. He must have a fucking stomach made of steel. At another stop in traffic I notice he's spotted a man with his young daughter waiting to cross the road. He winds down the window and screams ”Deutschland!” at them. Johan and Andy tell him to shut the fuck whilst I've hidden by laying down on the seat. He's indeed off on one.

I decide to stay in the fetal position I've climbed into and try a fight myself into sleep. I'm not sure if I catch a wink or two, but if I do I'm soon awake again. We're on the autobahn and Jon is playing the new Funeral Mist album, is in great spirits, and is trying to convince Ronnie it is the best album in the world. Indeed he actually wants Ronnie to agree with him and wants this confirmed by Ronnie telling him so. Poor Ronnie. Jon gives up after about twenty minutes. He just gets on with pulling his black metal poses and screaming along to the songs. I give up on sleep at this point, as it's simply not happening, and instead focus on getting Ronnie to stop at the next service station so I can get some coffee into my system. I promise him I'll swap places with Jon.

When we make a stop, everyone wakes and we head in to the services. I follow behind Jon who is now walking like a decrepid old man. He's got this thing, where he seems to age with every drop he drinks. When he gets to the point of being hammered he takes on the physical appearance of a tired 70 year old man. You have to see him in this state to truly appreciate it, but it's fucking hillarious. Anyway, I follow him in, chuckling to myself, as I spot some other straight people in the cafe area who look completely freaked out by him. One young guy in a business suit looks particularly disturbed.

On the way back into the van, I notice Andy and Jon off to the side of the courtyard, smoking a cig and seeming to have some sort of arguement, although it doens't appear that serious. Soon afer Jon falls on his arse into a pile of hard snow and we all piss ourselves laughing and put him into the back seat of the van. Within seconds he's fast asleep.

The show tonight was again really good. The sound for Reproach was a lot better out front than it was yesterday, and I really enjoyed watching them. The room was pretty small and compact, with the bar off to the side in another room and the merchandise tables in the foyer area. The place had a bit of a school hall feeling to it but the atmosphere was good all the same. The stage was ridiculously hot though, not helped in the slightest by three piping hot spot lights that were at the side of the stage and pointed right in my face. By the time the gig was done, I was soaked to the bone in sweat and completely fucked. We played well though and the crowd moved plenty during our set. It doesn't normally make much sense for us to do a support tour, but Municipal Waste's crowd seems to working out pretty well for us, and like I said the guys in Waste are all really nice, so the vibes are good.

Unfortunately, the Reproach drummer seems intent on destroying that, tonight at least. I spoke to the rest of the guys in the band for the first time earlier, and they seem like really good people. They're obviously a bit embarrased later on after the show by their drummer's antics. He's completely out of his mind. That's obviously not a problem for anyone on the tour. But he's being really loud and it gets a bit annoying after a while. All three bands are sharing a big dressing room and this guy is wankered on one of the sofa's, making sure everybody else in the room hears about how much he loves booze and cocaine. It's boring to say the least. The Municipal guys obviously know him from sometime in the past and seem to be putting up with it.

Then he gets up and moves to a chair which have Johan's wet gig clothes lying on them. When Johan goes to move them away from the guy he throws his beer bottle around his head soaking Johan's jeans in the process. A short while later, after finishing off the rest of the booze in the fridge, entirely on Municipal's behalf, he makes a further show of himself by shouting that the booze is indeed finished and then kicks over the sofa table, which has people's personal stuff on it. By this time Ryan has had enough and tells the Reproach singer in no uncertain terms, that if he doesn't get his drummer into shape then they won't be on the tour much longer. I feel sorry for him to be honest. He looks pretty embarrased, and it's not really his fault the drummer in his band is acting like a retard, though I guess somebody has to be responsible for him if he can't look after himself...

One thing I was chuffed about was that our friend Litty turned up with his distro and I picked up a few albums from him. Two particularly great finds were a couple of Graf Orlock records with the some of the greatest artwork I've ever seen.

We're staying at the venue tonight. The people at the venue hand us a bunch of fold out camping beds which are about as comfortable as a hot poker to the balls.

At least we don't have to drive far tomorrow so I'll finally get something close to a normal amount of sleep for the first time since we left.

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