Sunday, December 19, 2010

Re-capitalism: A tough love story

Consider this the fast forward version of the last two months:

October ?-30th : Practice in Louisville. Also included was fixing Big Ben (our van). Scuba watched It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Season One at least ten times.

October 31st : Non-stop drive from Louisville to New England to start tour the following day. We ended up in Salem, NH for the night.

SHIT FUCKING HAPPENS

November 1st: Toad's Place, New Haven, CT - First night of the tour. Met up with Every Time I Die and Howl. I bought sneakers. Scuba, Brian and Chris hunted for burgers and failed. Dan established himself as an expert merch guy. A few kinks aside, it was a great first show and, hands down, the best we've ever had in Connecticut. It was also the night we realized that watching kids go apeshit for ETID in small clubs for the next month was going to be very, very entertaining.

Novemeber 2nd: The Met, Pawtucket, RI - Stayed with Mr. Trash Art himself, Mitch McArtor, and was greeted with an abundance of Nice Slice Pizza, which is the only pizza that matters. Excellent show, and was a chance to play a place we rarely get to pass through anymore. Friends showed up and good times were had.

November 3rd: Webster Studio Downstairs, New York, NY - Somehow managed to grab the spot directly in front of the venue, which in NY is like a band winning powerball. Sold out crowd...in fact, waaayyy oversold. The NYFD would have flipped their shit. This was the first night of watching TT fans turn themselves into wrecking balls during our set. Highly supported and appreciated. Packed up and drove to Jersey to stay with an old friends of Chris'.

November 4th: The Note, West Chester, PA - Rain during load in. Awesome. Temp finally started dipping down and giving us a taste of late fall in the northeast. The stage at The Note is very high. It was a fun crowd, though, and as soon as Fucking Viva started the set, the kids.....the kids had fun. During ETID's set, Keith managed to get the crowd to surf a kid all the way to the back of the venue so he could take a piss. Priceless.

November 5th: Canal Club, Richmond VA - There were roughly 400 more people at this show than when we played there the previous year with Narrows. Quite a difference. Opening band had an average age of about 14. It was kind of awesome. Dan witnessed an accident on the bridge above the venue where a complete bumper flew over the side and landed about twenty feet from the van. I had my first broken nose of the tour. Following the show, everyone headed to a place to eat, drink and be merry. I got a front row seat in watching a really, really drunk girl make an ass out of herself by repeatedly slobbering over the ETID dudes. I can't even explain how awkward it was, so I won't even try.

November 6th: New Brookland Tavern, Columbia, SC - Most of the boys went to go see Due Date. I found gingerbread pop-tarts. Chris got to ride his bike. Everyone wins. The show was a perfect example of why we were happy to be on this tour. Lots of kids who have never heard us were exposed to some dirty shit, and they ate it up. Packed up and drove to ATL.

November 7th: Club Hell, Atlanta, GA - Stayed at another of Chris' friends' places. Dan and I woke up, went to Whole Foods (Atlanta's is one of the best in the country, in my opinion). Following the face stuffing, we got an oil change, went to get merch supplies, and bought a hand-vac for the van because I am anal and like cleaning. Club Hell was fully packed and we had one of the better shows of the first half of the tour. Again, human torpedoes made an appearance for the entire 35 minutes we were on stage. Marcy Playground was playing upstairs, still trying to squeeze every last dime out of "Sex and Candy". There were about twenty people in a room that holds 1300. Hey dudes.....give it the fuck up. The dollar and under CD bin doesn't lie......no one gives a fuck.

November 8th: Culture Room, Ft. Lauderdale, FL - Long ass overnight drive. Finally made our way to the bottom of Florida, where we visited Chris' mom. We followed that with unexciting errands. Made it to the venue early and loaded in. The first thing I noticed was the stage was about five feet high. This is alarming when you have absolutely no grace or balance. We were also not allowed to step on the monitors, which is much more difficult than it seems. Scuba had been dropped off in Orlando at his mom's and showed up later with his brother. The show was....good? I watched Chris eat at his favorite diner, Peter Pan. He ate about five pounds of food in one sitting.

November 9th: Jack Rabbit, Jacksonville, FL - Very bizarre show. Very bizarre venue. Worst bathrooms. Luckily, there's a burrito place next door where you can sneak in and take a shit as many times as you need to. Jack Rabbits turns into a sauna after one band plays, so by the time we got up there, we were sweating before playing one song.

November 10th: I'm sorry I can't remember the venue name, New Orleans, LA - A day off from the ETID tour, so we played a space show with two locals. Whole Foods visit, followed by a Target run, and lots of traffic. Brian from Thou set up the show and was kind enough to feed us. I have known him for about ten years of setting up shows, and he is about as backed as they come. The show was perfect. There were only forty kids squeezed into this room, but those forty kids had the enthusiasm of four hundred. It was a much needed surprise after a long day of driving and waiting. Dan bought a po' boy for $14 and felt ripped off.

November 11th: The Loft, Dallas, TX - Great sold out show. The venue fed us extremely well and there was a great backstage with a coffeemaker (!). I took a shower in the rain. Brian and Andy from ETID talked about gear for over three hours that day. I was impressed. Very odd assortment of people made up the crowd, but they were all there to have fun. ETID's set was bonkers. Kids hung from anything and everything. Following the show, mostly everyone ended up at a local karaoke bar.

November 12th: Jake's, Lubbock, TX - The last time we played Lubbock was on the Napalm Death tour at the Concrete Jungle. It wasn't pretty. This show, however, was a pretty nice change. Similar to the SC show, we exposed ourselves to many a new converted TT fan. There was a coffee place close by that kept us caffeinated. The boys where able to fulfill their WHATABURGER cravings. Victories all around. I cleaned the van for 2 hours and loved every second.

November 13th: Mikey's Place, Las Cruces, NM - Great art space. Ended up at a huge strip mall for a while, where the guys went to a movie while I hunted down a natural foods store. Pants were bought. Show itself was very fun. Following the set, we decided on a Motel 6 for the night to get some real sleep.

November 14th: Launch Pad, Albuquerque, NM - I'm trying to think of how to put this diplomatically, but I can't, so here goes: Somehow an early show was added very last minute and was made up of the type of bands Hot Topic shits out as talented or good. We roll up to this place and start gagging at the amount of deep v-necks and salon champs. It was, simply put, fucking obnoxious. Odd show, odd night. Moving on.

November 15th: Nile Downstairs, Phoenix, AZ - Phoenix has always been a fun place to play, and this was no different. Lots of kids having a blast+vegan treats being sold upstairs+only 75 degrees= a happy TT. Got to stay at a nice place and we all had a good night of relaxation. Brian got a new V4. It was like Christmas for him.

November 16th: Area 702 Skatepark, Las Vegas, NV - Ahhh, Las Vegas. Our first time playing there. Playing a skatepark seems like a win/win. Yet, this venue allowed no moshing. The stage was another five footer and had a barrier. We were also going to be fined $25 if the merch area was left "dirty". Hmmmm. After the set, we got a cheap ass hotel and spent the night being weird. Dan lost a bunch of money. Chris watched Dan lose a lot of money. Scuba fell asleep. Brian hung out with Andy, and I went grocery shopping (shocking). We all woke up the next morning happy.

November 17th: Chain Reaction, Anaheim, CA - Swung by Prosthetic to pick up a restock of merch we had sent there. Went by Southern Lord to drop off records. Headed to Chain and began our night. Another sold out crowd filled with kids ready to swing from the rafters for ETID. I may have my nights confused, but I think this is the night where we went to the Sit Happens DVD party, where I watched their sound guy, Zack, lose his mind. Dan got wasted and Zack and Dan had a lighthearted "showdown" that involved a whomping stick and a beer bottle. Security at this place was hating their job that night. Quote of the night goes to Dan, as security was trying to kick out a handful of the group. "Why do you have such a boner for the rules, man?". Amazing.

November 18th: Cedar Center, Lancaster, CA - Chris' birthday! I bought him a box of Oreo Cakesters, some weird German chocolate cake, and five chocolate bars. I can't remember much, but I remember the show was a lot of fun. I think there was a Whole Foods stop that day. Our good friend Timmy made it out, which is always a sign we're in Cali. It was Keith's birthday as well, and at the end of their set, he was carried from the stage all the way to outside the venue. Great day, great night.

November 19th: Metro Opera House, Oakland, CA - Rain. Lots of rain. Whole Foods. Brian and Chris went to a movie. Dan wandered the waterfront. Scuba tried to get a free tattoo. I napped until 20 minutes before we played and woke up completely disoriented from a ridiculous dream. Fun crowd that seemed to enjoy themselves. Met the swag king himself, Chauncey. Loaded out in the rain. Drove to SF, where we were going to stay at this girl's apartment before we opened the front gate/door and realized she lived in a place that looked like the setting of where everything bad happened in every grindhouse film. Headed back to the van, but not before we watched a street brawl where a girl got knocked out cold and someone else got beat up with an umbrella. Ended up at a very nice place with a very generous hostess who gave us starburst and twizzlers. Chris, Dan and I ended up at an overpriced diner.

November 20th: Boardwalk, Sunnydale, CA: Lots and lots of rain. All day. All night. Brian, Scuba and Chris went to a mall while Dan and I stayed behind at the venue. Scuba and Brian bought hats. I made Starbucks my bitch for about four hours. Without exaggeration, the entire city was flooding from the downpour. It was ridiculous. The show itself was fantastic, with a full crowd of rowdy people that were willing to drive around in a monsoon to watch some bands make a bunch of noise on a Saturday night. Thanks, rowdy people. And so ends California love, and turns into....

November 21st-22nd: Pure Hell

....everything not awesome. We had two days off to make a 17 hour drive from California to Denver happen. This should have been simple. Unfortunately, an unrelenting snowstorm the entire way spat in our faces. Driving in mountains at 15-30mph was the theme for this trip. Freezing cold. There's no other word to describe this period of time other than: stupid. There's really nothing else to say...it was driving, snow and cold. This was also where we all started to get sick. By the time we reached Denver, our heads were going to explode. Dan went into "dad mode" and proved himself to be a superstar driver in the snow.

November 23rd: Marquis Theater, Denver, CO - Snow for two whole days, then we get to Denver and it's....sunny? Of course it is. We got free food at a place called Illegal Pete's, which was a nice burrito place that helps out touring bands. Showed up early and had time to relax. Did a photo shoot and were quite happy with the results. Well...we were happy. The show was, thankfully, packed and full of good vibes. Denver brought the headbang and we gratefully kept producing more noise to make those sore necks validated. There's a pizza place in the venue with delicious garlic knots. We might have gotten a hotel that night. I can't remember. Thanks, Denver....you've never let us down.

November 24th: Sokol Underground, Omaha, NE - Our first visit to this fine state. Frigid. Frigid. We loaded in 16 degree weather with high wind gusts. Gaza ended up on the bill on their way home to SLC after finishing another tour. I took pictures of a kid with a three foot high mohawk at the Burger King across the street. I also made a kid clean off the toilet seat in the BK bathroom because he pissed all over it. I had to explain that going on tour and showing up to a venue with a horrendous bathroom sucks, so you have to find a respectable place nearby to take a shit. When you go into said bathroom and witness some little prick piss all over the seat for no reason, you lose all sense of calm. If he didn't clean it, I planned on giving him and his buddies swirlies. The show was really incredible. There seemed to be a lot of kids who had been waiting the past four years for us to finally get there, including a kid who had been e-begging us since 2007. He was right up front, and Scuba and I saw him at the same time. We both immediately looked at each other and said, "That's the fucking kid!!". We high fived him about ten times during the set. I broke my nose again and bled all over the first row or two. Now I have a big scar. Job well done. We ended up hanging out on the ETID rv for a while after the show to avoid the cold. We celebrated Thanksgiving eve sleeping in a Walmart parking lot.

November 25th: Triple Rock, Minneapolis, MN - Thanksgiving. Minneapolis. A high of 11 degrees. It was beyond painful. We spent the afternoon at the Mall of America and went to the movies. Got to Triple Rock. For those of you who have not been there, they make some of the best food in the history of the galaxy. But not on Thanksgiving. The kitchen was closed, and we were given the WORST food in the history of the galaxy. To compensate, copious amounts of liquor were supplied, which made for an entertaining night for those that indulged. During ETID's set, Dan stagedove with Chris on his shoulders. We got the fuck out of there asap, before we turned into ugly ice sculptures. It was a long, cold and event filled next twelve hours on our way to Chicago.

November 26th: Subterranean, Chicago, IL - Dan's stomping grounds. Black fucking Friday. Chicago provided us with one of the most insane reactions we've ever had. Even before a note was played, bodies were flying everywhere and it didn't let up for a minute the entire set. We love playing Chicago. It's always been a place to look forward to ever since our first tour. Brian was extremely sick that day but played the whole set like a champ. Impressive. After the show, we jetted to the suburbs to stay at Dan's mom's house. Warmth and comfort for a few hours did us a lot of good.

November 27th: Vaudeville Mews, Des Moines, IA - Woke up early to get an oil change and ended up needing tires as well. Great delay to the start of the day. As soon as that was done, we jetted to Des Moines to get there in time for an early show. And I mean early. In this city, if you want to do an all ages show, it needs to be over by 9pm. We played at around 6:50, which is like 11am to us. Nice coffee place next door. Show was a bit of a blur. Everyone went out after to a local bar that was having ska/reggae/whatever night. Brian and I opted to walk around and ended up back at the van. I ate three pb and j sandwiches.

November 28th: Fubar, St. Louis, MO - Started the day watching the boys feast on bbq from the next block over from the venue. The carnivorous smiles said it all. They were in heaven. The show was another memorable one, with some pretty damn impressive stagedives occurring. We packed up quickly and headed to Louisville. Sorry to the kid who got the stitches punched out of his mouth.

November 29th: Uncle Pleasant's, Louisville, KY - Chris was bedridden for the day, sick as a dog, which is exactly not the way you want to spend a day at home. Cleaned out the van, dropped off a bass cab and some records did many errands. Again....rain. The show itself was fantastic, and was the way I was hoping it'd go for Brian and Chris as they played in the city they live. Uncle Pleasant's feels like a microwave as soon as there's more than thirty bodies in there, so with three hundred, it was almost too much to take. Great crowd. Sorry to the kid who got hit in the face with a bottle. Ouch.

November 30th: Mr. Smalls, Pittsburgh - Rain. All day and night. Also, a traffic jam. Also, loading out on a hill. Some good friends came out and we succeeded in causing many a confused face. The frustration of the day was released on stage that night, and I remember feeling as though we played a pretty intense set. Loaded out and headed to Jersey.

December 1st: School of Rock, South Hackensack, NJ - Drove overnight to get there. Ate bagels. Went to a mall and ate candy fruit slices. Went to Whole Foods. Other things happened, but I'm drawing a blank. The show itself was another great one. We've had some awesome basement shows in NJ and it was nice to see that playing a larger venue gave us the same results.

December 2nd: Peabody's, Cleveland, OH - Last day of the Shit Happens tour. Sadness. Went to Whole Foods. Drove to the venue and tried to find a way to avoid the dickhead metermaid/cops that surround the front of the venue like vultures, just waiting to hand out violations. The show was a perfect bookend to a superb tour. Kids were there to have a lot of fun. ETID's set was stagedives galore. Everything ended on a positive note. We said our goodbyes and then, even worse, drove to the train station to say our goodbyes to Dan, who wasn't able to come out for the remainder of our dates. Best merch dude/road man/ray of sunshine. Ever.

December 3rd: I think we drove to Louisville. I seriously have no memory of it. This is when we all started to get reallly sick.

December 4th: Red7, Austin, TX - Dudes went to get pulled pork-stuffed burgers. I ate Whole Foods, including a vegan cookie that weighed about a pound (the "big Jim"). Drove to the venue. For some reason, they decided to have the show on the outside stage. In December. It was freezing, and even though it was a good show, all it really did was bring our health down further.
Ate at an amazing diner at about 2am. Vegan blueberry pancakes = heaven.

December 5th: Rest, Austin, TX - Our show in San Antonio was cancelled because ICP decided to do a second show at the venue. I know....I don't know. We stayed in Austin. Brian and Chris saw 127 Days, while Scuba and I saw the new Harry Potter movie. The Alamo Draft House is incredible.

December 6th: The Door, Dallas, TX - We began the JFAC, Skeletonwitch, Misery Index tour. Brian's birthday eve wish was to see Black Swan, so we hunted down a theater where it was showing. I went to Target and cleaned the van. We all had become so sick, that paranoia set in and I needed to Lysol the fuck out of the van, which I did. The show had people and the programs were very easy to read.

December 7th: Warehouse Live, Houston, TX - I can't remember anything about this day besides coughing up weird colors and I think we had the trailer tires replaced. I watched a kid stagedive into no one during Skeletonwitch. After the show, we drove to various food places and began out trek to Florida. Rain ended up being pretty bad, so we stopped after only a few hours.

December 8th: Driving. We busted ass and made it to St. Petersburg early. I could be wrong. To be honest, I don't recall much of anything from this point on. It was all snot, coughing and headaches for Brian and I.

December 9th: State Theater, St. Petersburg, FL - Coffee nearby and an easy loading area made the night better. The merch room was just red lights, so everything looked really fucked up. As soon as the show was done, we drove straight to Scuba's mom's house in Lake Mary.

December 10th: Culture Room, Ft. Lauderdale, FL - see the November 8th entry. It was pretty much the exact same, except Brian was able to see his mom and I was able to eat sushi.

December 11th: Jack Rabbits, Jacksonville, FL - see the November 9th entry. As soon as we finished playing, I couldn't breathe anymore from the amount of shit in my lungs, so I got in my sleeping bag and kept warm. Jack Rabbits also allows smoking indoors and it's disgusting. We drove straight to Atlanta after the show.

December 12th: Masquerade, Atlanta, GA - Whole Foods. Shocking. Also went to Best Buy. Had some familiar faces show up to the show, which was a nice feeling on this tour. Got to also see another TT tattoo, which is an honor every time I see a new one. Sorry, kids, I don't remember anything from this show besides coughing up stuff and falling over everywhere because my body felt like mud. We got in the van as fast as humanly possible and drove to Louisville for a day off....

December 13th: Louisville, KY

...which turned into the rest of the days off. There was no way to avoid getting treatment at this point. I flew home to Seattle to go to the hospital as I think a few of the other dudes did in Louisville.

So, there it is. A very vague tour wrap up.

Hey, ETID!!!.....did you read all this? I just spent five hours typing out SHINFO!

In all seriousness, thanks to all of you who came out and sang along, dove off of something, or were just in the room.

rjm/TT

4 comments:

  1. incredible read. thank you for the effort.

    i was thrilled to be in Dallas on a trip and find out you guys were playing on my last day there. the perfect ending for me. hope all are feeling better.

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  2. Actually, a LOT of people still give a fuck about Marcy Playground. You keep toiling away though, I'm sure you'll amount to SO much more :) lol

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  3. Great read, thanks for typing up all that and for making the oakland show fucking awesome. The rain -was- a total bummer but you guys made the hour and a half+ drive in it completely worth it.

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