I got really sick after Roadburn. My gaskets broke and I was leaking precious fluids from my nose. No fun.
We headed to Belgium, land of cartoons. Really, you know this because all Belgians look like cartoons. This is not a slam, not in the slightest. There are many beautiful Belgians (one of our adorable promoters of the eve, Sophie, for instance). It’s just that I feel I could capture any Belgians likeness with three pen strokes. Maybe it’s because of a prolonged exposure to Tin Tin and the Smurfs.
That isn’t to say Belgium isn’t a hard place. It can get rough when you don’t have a government, and your club is literally on the Mean Street.
Yup, Rue Mean. That’s where La Zone is, an excellent art spot, restaurant, and club. They also sold books and records. I love these all inclusive places in Europe, which is why I asked the booker, Odyssey Booking, to get places like that for us. Excellent work.
The show was great, with a few friends like Arno and Dirk showing up again or a Ludicra show. Arno is pretty awesome for having a tattoo of our friend Matt Shapiro.
The show was great with a good band Sardonis playing. In the morning, Christy did it up with an excellent breakfast from the food provided by the club at the band flat they had. God bless European hospitality, Christy’s excellent cooking skills, and Belgian chocolates.
Oh yeah, also a neighbor’s cat snuck in and cuddled with me for a few hours. That was awesome. I am Dr. Doolittle.
Next we went to Utrecht, of which the coolest thing about the night I already mentioned before, the amazing full stacks of destruction at the dB club. All I can really say about this show was that the staff was awesome, and it wasn’t as grim as we dreaded after so few showed when doors opened… but not by much. Also, the opening band had a song in which the bridge part consisted of a cover of “The Bird.” Haven’t you heard?
Next we went to Hamburg, where I had little hope. We had a show in Bielefeld cancelled due to, apparently, one prick in a punk house with too much time on his hands. I’ll have to deal with that whole mess in a later entry, because it deserves special attention, causing this Hamburg show we got added to and one complete cancellation for a fucking Friday night. That is a major bummer. The quick way round is that we were accused of having ties with fascist bands, you know, despite having two Jews in the band. Way to do your fact checking, you Deutsch douche bag.
The club was plenty nice. Problem was, the actual headliner cancelled, so we had to take that slot on what was ostensibly some kind of pop punk show with a band called the Elektro Boys. They were nice enough, and I enjoyed them well enough for what they did… along with about 5 others. Still, I was impressed: they had mics on all their cabs, in-ear monitors, a sense of humor, and played a full professional set for the couple folks who really came for them. Extra guitars were ready to go… it was basically the stereotype of orderly Germaness made reality.
That’s something I’ve been looking into. A mic for my bass cab. Basically, I hate DI boxes because I run fuzz, and direct, this sounds like shit. I prefer micing. I got into an argument with a sound guy about this, and he pointed out a typical cheap mic available in a bar isn’t going to get the full bass frequency. Noted. So, I want a mic that’s made for bass and I can have it ready for any sound guy trying to plant one of those infernal DI boxes in front of my amp.
It didn’t look good for us in Hamburg. But… the promoter from Rendsburg, who had her show taken from her by the same kind of over-reaching fuck monkey Internet trolls who can’t check that they’re ruining a time for DIY musicians with progressive attitudes, instead of taking on a real threat to democracy… wait, that sentence is screwy. Carol, the promoter of one of our cancelled shows (Rendsburg), brought all the people from this punk place who wanted to actually enjoy music to our show from about 160 Kilometers away. Thanks! When I see dredlocked punks waking in when we play, I feel like everything is gonna be better. And it was. We played, they danced, and the night was okay. Thanks, good punks of Rendsburg for coming to see us in Hamburg… cause no one else did!
We went to the Reepeebahn afterwards, the famous area of Hamburg populated by prostitutes, sex shops, and women for sale in windows. 14 years ago when I was here the first time as a 21 year old, this was amazing and interesting. Now it’s depressing. At least there were wild bunnies roaming around on the walk back home.
Onto to København… Actually I’m here, but I’ll write about it after. Suck it.
Doktor Ross Sewage
dispatched from Die Struwwelpetra Ludicra 2011 European Tour