Notes from Das Boot 204

6/16/14 Hasselt, Belgium

A few headlining shows before the last couple of festivals and then home. We did Download Festival in England on Saturday and it was pretty fucking dire. The only band I wanted to see was Orange Goblin and they delivered the heavy-osity that these festivals promise. And then something odd happened, I was talked into going to see Twisted Sister. I never like Twisted Sister, never. Never dug their good timey singalong hard rock bullshit, never liked their us vs. them videos. Didn’t like their look, a cross between Sha Na Na and New York Dolls. Nothing about them appealed me at all. But they put on a great show. All their corny bullshit worked, it was a band as motivational speaker. And although I will never listen to them on purpose, I do have new found respect for them, which I’m sure will let them sleep a little easier.
And now a brief word on kilts. I’ve seen some kilt wearing guys at most of these festivals most of them are defensive about their attire choice. Unless you’re in the Scottish Dragoons ( or whatever they are actually called) you should expect a couple of “hey that dude’s wearing a skirt” looks. I don’t give a shit what you wear and I don’t want to hear your explanations. If a guy was wearing a stovepipe hat and wasn’t a Lincoln impersonator he would get looks as well, deal with it.

20140616-055423-21263084.jpg
Statue of nude Alfred Hitchcock with dog ( I think)

Notes from Das Boot 203

[upon rereading this before publishing. Jeez, what a bunch of mundane, insignificant trials & tribulations, but that's what long drives on tour are made up of]

9/12/14 on the autobahn en route to England
10am

Most festivals have internet connection (the exception this tour was the badly run Rock Hard Fest) and the speed of it depends on how many people are using it. It’s a real feast or famine type setup. Yesterday at Copenhell during Iron Maiden’s set it was smooth sailing as everyone was watching the concert and I finished up writing Notes 202 . I finished just as their show ended and by the time I was posting, everybody came and tried to get online. Everything internet was frozen. The upshot of this boring look at the fascinating world of backstage internet is that I think the last blog was posted but I’m not sure. On another more crucial note our coffee-bot coffee machine died. It’s stuck in cleaning mode like somebody with a severe case of OCD. We do have a french press but nothing to grind the coffee beans. We’re supposed to stop at a supermarket later hopefully we can get something then. Coffee is very important on the bus, it adds a thin sheen of civility that makes long travel bearable. I’m sitting in the upstairs front lounge (ie: 2 seats by the window), it’s the best place on the bus for a little solitude, unfortunately it’s right in front of all the bunks, so when everybody is sleeping (like now) it’s a symphony of different offensive smells and snoring.
2:30pm somewhere in Holland
Luckily, our tour bus company met us at a rest area and switched out coffee makers, so a catastrophe was averted. Danny and Fish ( sound man & guitar tech respectively) are in the back lounge watching some kind of crime drama that’s in French with Swedish subtitles. I don’t think either of them speak or read either language, I’m puzzled. I’m reading a bunch of old Creepy and Eerie magazines as the day slowly drips by.
9:30pm on a ferry heading to England
Well, the new coffee machine is acting squirrelly and only works about half of the time with an intricate process to nudge it along. It seems that the bus company doesn’t have much faith in it either as they gave us a back up coffee maker to the replacement coffee maker. At least the coffee machine problem takes my mind off of why Danny and a Fish would watch a movie that neither of them understand. It’s vexing to me.
9/13/14 9:30am, a truck stop in England
The wi-fi here at the truckstop isn’t terrible, the coffee is almost hot and it’s not raining. This is what rates as a trifecta these days. Stayed here over night as the driver had to get his 12 hours of rest (sanctioned by law, he’s not lazy). We leave here in an hour or two and head to a hotel in Derby. Tomorrow is the Download Festival.

I am also putting up a bunch of tour stuff on Instagram @feedtim

20140613-095522-35722621.jpg
Farewell broken coffee machine, may you never darken our doorstep again

Notes from Das Boot 202

6/11/14, Copenhagen, Copenhell Fest.

9:45am
Most of a day off yesterday at a super modern hotel/convention center. It’s cool looking but it’s so modern and forward thinking that there’s a glass wall that separates the bathroom from the sleeping part. This is fine if you’re not sharing a room, unfortunately Danny and I are so it’s an annoying five flights down to the lobby toilet. There’s some decals on the glass but it’s still a glass wall in front of a toilet.
11:15pm
As Seb one our techs put it “Copenhell was more Hell and less Copen“, a couple of snafus and some rain but it was an alright day. I wish I liked Anthrax and Iron Maiden. The next couple of days here feature Clutch, Graveyard and Uncle Acid and The Deadbeats which are bands I would like to see. Long drive to Download Fest tonight and tomorrow.

20140611-171840-62320773.jpg
This way for camping, music and co-joined twins

Notes from Das Boot 201

6/8/14 Gelsenkirchen, Germany / Rock Hard Festival

Rock Hard is A) a German hard rock magazine B) a German hard rock festival and C) a German attempt at double entendre humor. Long day, no internet and shitty catering. A lot of bands were using triggered drums that sounded like frantic typing or somebody sending out an S.O.S. (Save Our Sound). Smallish amphitheater reminded me of Spinal Tap’s Jazz Odyssey show (“Derek Smalls, he wrote this!”). Good crowd, a sea of black shirts with indecipherable band names written in fonts that haven’t been invented yet (Cthulu Sans Serif and Demonic Condensed). Was lucky enough to see Blues Pills play, they sounded like a heavy Shocking Blue. On a completely different note, just found out my beloved NY Mets got swept by the lowly Chicago Cubs.

Notes from Das boot 200

Sweden Rock, Solvesborg

After a long first day which was spent waiting at Copenhagen airport for missing gear. We arrived at Sweden Rock which is a weird cross section of heavy rock. We are on the same stage today as Foghat and Ted Nugent. Volbeat is headlining the main stage. It is 11am here and I can hear sound checks from three different stages, it sounds like three radios stuck on three shitty heavy rock stations from the eighties. The crew here is really nice though, the coffee is strong and the internet connection is surprisingly good. Also I’m a lighting guy whose band is on at noon, if we don’t get a solar eclipse my job should be fairly easy.

20140607-052952-19792458.jpg
Any questions about King Diamond or Mercyful Fate? You’ve come to the right place

More trouble for Led Zeppelin

By G.T. Seaver, The A&P press

The rock band Led Zeppelin has been in the news of late. With the start of a massive reissue series of their back catalog and legal problems stemming from a song writing dispute concerning their song “stairway to heaven” (a heavy staple of classic rock radio). Now more problems seem to be on the horizon for the still popular rock band as professor John Milner a musicologist at Norton University has made a shocking claim. “It appears that the band Led Zeppelin wrote none of their own songs, they are all stolen from other bands, individuals or in a small number of cases very intelligent pets”. Professor Milner goes on to say “The only song we think they might have written themselves was Hot Dog from the album In Through The Out Door”. A comprehensive list of all of Led Zeppelin’s songs and the artists that professor Milner claims to have written them will be forth coming. There has been no response from any Led Zeppelin representatives.

20140603-093651-34611106.jpg

I Hate Me, part, 422,916

I’m at work. Middle aged drunk guy sails over to the used LP section, The music that’s playing is the latest Daft Punk CD.
Guy- ugggghhhhhh! I’ve heard this a million times.
Me-Well, everyone who works here gets a turn to play what they want.
Guy- Yeah, it’s great but c’mon……hey you guys got good vinyls here.
Me-mmmmmm(thru gritted teeth)
Guy-whaddya know about this John Fogerty vinyl (holds up a copy of John Cafferty & the Beaver Brown Band-Tough All Over)
Me-Yeah, that’s not John Fogerty, it’s John Cafferty. he was an 80’s Springsteen knock-off.
Guy-Oh..Cause I never heard any of his stuff after Creedence, maybe I’ll check it out.
Me-That’s not the guy from Creedence, his name is FOGERTY, not CAFFERTY
Guy-…yeeeaaaah, I don’t know……………
Me- ……….Yeah, you should definitely get it, its his best album.
He did.

John Fogerty's greatest album

John Fogerty’s greatest album

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 110 other followers