Monday, April 2, 2012


It's amazing how little sleep you can survive on whilst on tour. Anything over four hours is just about enough to get by on. It's not like you burn much fuel sitting on your arse all day.. The breakfast wasn't free this morning so I decided to forget it and treat myself to another hour in bed. Of course Andy told me when he came back up to the room that they were serving fresh scones and tea but the bastard was just trying to wind me up.

We met down in the reception around ten thirty. The Black Breath guys looked pretty wasted. Apparently they'd got to bed a couple of hours ago. Eric told me, actually he demonstrated, how Elijah was dancing at the bar last night. Seeing that would have almost been worth sacrificing sleep for.

Those poor dogs were still in the Jeep this morning. Almost broke my heart. God knows how long they've been there. I regret not reporting the cunt who owned them to the police. What the fuck is wrong with people? We should have complained to the hotel receptionist...I feel shit that we didn't.

When we arrived back at last night's venue there was a break dancing competition going on. Loads of kids running about the place. It's was a little chaotic loading out. This big friendly security guy seemed to take an interest in us and was intent on conversation. “You guys from Sweden right?”

“Yes that's correct sir.”


Hmm..Well yes we do have snus in Sweden. Thinking of that reminds me of another conversation I overheard last night. Classic Jon. Some Belgian crust punk kid came up to him by the merch stall wanting answers.

“Why do you not have dreadlock?”

“I fucking hate dreadlocks!”

“I am dreadlock..”

“Yes.” Conversation over.

I ended up eating a cone of chips for breakfast this morning and regretted it immediately. Cue the Swedes delight in my Britishness. The drive today was even shorter than the last, barely clocking in at an hour. I could get used to this.

The venue today was something else. I've been to a few places like this in the low countries, it seems to be quite a standard on the club circuit here. The place was brand spanking new, clean and clinical, the people running the place very professional. The treatment you get at these places is off the hook and whilst it's really appreciated I can't help but wonder what these guys know about putting on a punk show. I think these places are state funded. They must be.

The stage in the venue was half the size of the hall sized room it was situated in. I guess this place holds around five hundred people, but the people running the place told me they can minimize the place by drawing these big black curtains across the width of the room. I guess we'll be doing that tonight.

I've never been to Kortrijk before, but from the view from the dressing room window, it seems like a cosy little town. I quite fancied going for a wander but for some reason just didn't have the energy. The venue had a roof terrace which provided me with fresh air when I needed it. Did not do much today, a typical day on tour really. Jon, who has brought with him his ridiculously heavy bowling bag with not one but two fucking bowling balls in it, went off on his own to “rulla” as he always says. Really weird seen occurred. We clocked him from the window of the dressing room, hobbling down the street in his usual old man posture with a film crew following him. Fucking bizarre! He told me later that they actually went with him and filmed him playing a match against some other dude. Apparently the film crew belongs to the venue and they're filming not only the set of each band, they're also recording a day in the life of a band on tour. I had wondered what the fuck was going on earlier when a cameraman had turned up in the dressing room and stood there filming us doing...nothing..

Dinner was a bit of a trip today. Some guy from the venue, apparently very serious about his cooking, set up a stove at the end of the long table that stood in the centre of the dressing room, and spent about two hours making our dinner. The food was unbelievable too! Artichoke soup to start followed by a mushroom risotto. I wonder what the chances of being provided with such culinary delights are in the UK? Slim to fuck all I guess. Although the show in Nottingham tomorrow is a real punk DIY set-up, so we should be ok there at least.

The show tonight was pretty much as I expected. There were about eighty people in the venue, and with the curtains indeed halving the room it looked half decent. It is a shame to think though, that as luxurious as the hospitality is at these places, if this same crowd was in a small DIY space somewhere, the show would have been insane. Some guy after the show told me about a venue called the Pits which is small DIY space in town. We'll have to play there next time we go out on our own. Although I'll be coming here for dinner!

Claes is having a bad time at the moment. Tonight he didn't even make it through the third song. I was out front watching them and noticed he was having a hard time of it, started shaking his hands and looking really shaky. Feel so bad for him. He soon disappeared. By the time I got to the back stage area Elijah was already taking care of him. I hope we can get this sorted, terrible to see him like this. Thankfully he was better a short while later but he looked bad for a while there. Tormented played the rest of their set as three piece. Had to crack up when Drette tried to explain to the crowd that Claes was ok, he was just having some problems with a medical condition. He couldn't find the words in English though and it came out as, “Just to let you know our guitar player Claes is ok, he's just.....a bit tired.” Haha, fuck knows what the crowd made of that.

Our show was pretty good. Got a good reaction from the crowd. By the time This is the End came round the pit started kicking off. I had a bit of hard time of things again though, felt like I played pretty sloppy at points. Tour auto-pilot hasn't quite honed in yet. I'm struggling a bit with my guitar sound on stage, it seems to be really toppy. I'm going to try my Tele tomorrow. Jon was nervous as fuck during the show, so he told me afterwards. He'd heard they were recording the gig and it freaked him out a bit. He'd completely missed our conversation the night before about shortening the set by replacing Nowhere in Time with We're Fucked. He thought we were playing both and ended up playing Nowhere for about half of the next song, Circles. Tit.

The fact we played We're Fucked actually ending up making us some extra money since after the show some guy who had never heard us before really loved the “Fucked Song” and duly wanted the album with that song on it. Good work We're Fucked! Black Breath were great as usual. Tight as a duck's arse, those boys can fucking play. I pissed myself when stood side stage I happened to catch a glimpse of Jon in the nosh pit wind-milling HC style. He was pissed up and pretty chuffed, looking like a hardcore Willy Nelson.

After the show we loaded out on the promoters promise that it was safe to leave the gear in the van overnight. The hotel we were staying at was only a couple of minutes walk away. I had no idea what to expect but in accordance with how the rest of the day had been, we were put up in a four star hotel. Couldn't believe it. Now this we definitely won't be getting in the UK!

Upon check in were told that those of us sleeping on the first floor must be quiet since there were athletes sleeping in the rooms there, and they needed their rest. This seemed like a very odd situation and being half pissed, thought it was really funny.

We were what you might say, out of place at this joint. I was feeling a little bit tipsy by this point, as was Andy I think, and the two of us dumped our bags in the room we were sharing with Mark from BB who is straight edge, bade Mark goodnight and headed back down to the bar in the hotel's restaurant. On the way back down the corridor to the elevator, Johan appears at the door of his room and hisses, “Shush! Athletes!”. We all piss ourselves laughing.

The Tormented guys and Jon were at the bar waiting for us, as was Eric. We stood around waiting to be served, seemingly much to the annoyance of a rather snobby looking crowd of old cunts who were sat down to what looked like a dinner party, although there were seemingly no staff on serving them. It was only us and them in the place, but by the tone of their words, whatever they were saying, they didn't seem to chuffed to have our company. Eventually the night desk attendant, who was a timid looking, pimply teenager, came to our aid. He asked us if we would not rather sit in the other bar, obviously at the wish of the old cunts in the restaurant. I was pretty scoobied but was happy enough to sit anywhere as long as I could get a drink. It wasn't as if we were being loud in any way..I guess the old fuckers just didn't like the cut of our jib.

Anyway, the kid opens up another bar on the other side of the reception, just for us. Fucking magic! Couldn't quite believe it. The poor kid had no idea really, he explained as much to us, saying he's never worked behind the bar before. We order a beer each which he copes with well enough, but then I spot the rather stunning selection of single malts behind the bar and order a Laguvulin 16 year. This throws him. He literally throws about fifteen centilitres of the stuff into a large cognac glass! He tells me he has to check with his boss what it costs and gets on the phone. “Oops, it seems like this whiskey is really expensive. It's eleven Euros.” I almost bite the poor fuckers hand off! Considering the fact I've got about half the fucking bottle in my glass, I'd say that's pretty cheap. I park my arse on the sofa beside Drette, more than chuffed.

The Kid asks us if we want anything else, to which we tell him we're good for now thanks. He tells us if there's anything else we need just to come get him and he heads back to the reception. Andy immediately leans over the bar and goes to re-fill his glass, but somebody spots a camera in the corner so he refrains. Andy goes off in search of the young kid again..

We stay up chatting and drinking until around three am by which time I've actually mellowed out. I don't feel too drunk by the time I've had a shower and crawled into bed. Tomorrow we have an earlier start since we have to get the ferry from Calais to Nottingham. I sure as fuck don't want to miss the free breakfast at this hotel either.

Looking forward to tomorrow. My mates Snitch and Kimmins are coming up from Corby and then I'm heading back in the car with them to stay at my parents' place for the night. Can't play Nottingham and not visit my parents. The bed in my old room is still the cosiest I've ever slept in and I'm not passing up a chance to spend a night in it. And it's always great to see my parents, even if only to catch breakfast with them.

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