Monday, July 27, 2009

Europa Tour 09'

We embark on another tour this Wednesday, our first time heading over to Europe together. We'll be raging with Balance who are from Sweden. I'm excited to meet those guys and hopefully become great friends. I know Soul Control has toured Europe before, but not with this group of guys in the band, so I'm really excited to be apart of this trip.

Ryan and I are also moving out of our house this month and well it's a pain in the ass trying to get everything together. I'll be pretty much homeless until Nov. because I can't afford to pay rent while we're going to be gone and well one less expense to worry about really. It's a kind of freeing situation really. Plenty of great friends have offered me their couches in the mean time, so thank you so much to everyone. Also my friend Melanie is letting me store my meager amount of things in her basement so I'm very grateful for that. Honestly without our support network of friends I don't know where I or this band would be, so thank you to everyone who has really gone above and beyond for us, we really do appreciate it.

So these are the dates for our Europe trip.

all shows with BALANCE (SWE)
31/7 BE Antwerpen @ Den Eglantier
1/8 UK Ipswich @ The Rose and Crown
2/8 UK Sheffield @ Upperthorpe Hotel
3/8 UK Stoke on Trent @ Harry's Bar
4/8 UK Nothingham @ The Old Angel
5/8 UK London @ Grosvenor
6/8 BE Izegem @ Didi's Kot
7/8 BE Ghent @ Frontline (W/ DYS)
8/8 GE Wolfsburg @ Jugendhaus Ost
9/8 GE Hamburg @ Hafenklang
10/8 SWE Malmo @ Utkanten
11/8 SWE Goteborg @ Nortgarten
12/8 NO Oslo
13/8 NO Stavanger @ Kvitsøygata 25,
14/8 SWE Lindesberg @ Musikhuset
16/8 POL Warsaw @ CDQ
18/8 SLO Kosice @ T klub
19/8 UKR Kyiv @ Sokol Café
20/8 HU Zamárdi @ Közösségi Ház @ Rise Fest
21/8 AU Vienna @ Centro Once!
22/8 GE Hohenstein-ernsthal @ Voice Of Art festival
23/8 GE Bochum @ Zwischenfall @ Light's Out Fest
25/8 SP Madrid @ Barracudas
26/8 PO Porto @ Pin Up Bar
27/8 PO Faro @ A.R.C.M.
28/8 FR Angers @ T’es Rock Coco
29/8 BE Ieper @ Ieperfest

Time to Rage!!!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Mark Bronzino of Seasick & ANS

Mark and I got to meet when we were both raging in different rock outfits. Since then we've kept in contact through some form or another. I would like to think that we are friends and well when we talk it's usually about girls or punk. Both which beat us up pretty bad, but it's an addiction that we both can't shake really. In all honesty Mark is a very down to earth and compassionate person and I'm lucky enough to call him my friend. He shreds the axe in Seasick and ANS, So this is kind of a twofer. Go see one of his punk ensembles on your this summer while you.

1- How can a normal day of tour be described for you? Please describe
Seasick and ANS differences. . .

a day on the road is pretty normal for both seasick and ANS. wake up
on someones floor or couch that probably smells like cats or punks,
then start driving for about an hour before buying some chips or some
sort of "this happens to be" vegan filth that you find in rest stops
for breakfast. get back in the van and drive for a few more hours, get
to the show, load in, play as hard as you can, load out. then drive to
the sleeping spot, maybe cook ourselves dinner then hang for a bit
before sleeping under a table or on a blow up mattress next to the
bass player. repeat.
last summer on ANS tour we wrote our new LP and splits in the van and
thats sort of started a trend for all of my subsequent touring. on
this seasick tour we are going to be (finally) writing our lp, then on
the following ANS tour we will be writing our splits with ramming
speed and the rats from sweden. the biggest difference between touring
in the two bands is seasick usually wants to stop at cool vegan
restaurants and record stores while ANS usually wants to check out the
rad local skate spot. both bands enjoy partying quite a bit, but we
arent lucky enough nor do we have enough free time to "party all the
time" like eddie murphy's girl.

2- What role do you play when it comes to the band while on the road?
I.E organizer, song writer, motivator, money man. . .

i would like to think that everyone in both of the touring bands i am
in pulls their own weight while on the road. i play a part in booking
the tours and writing the songs in both bands, but everyone does their
fair share and we try to rotate responsibilities and distribute them
equally or to everyones ability/ time schedule. on seasick's european
tour i ended up having my passport copied and signing things when it
was time to get paid at state sponsored youth centers a few times.
that was really strange for us because we almost always get paid with
some sweaty bills and coins blended in with one or two guitar picks
handed to us in a man's top hat. one time in virginia we got paid in
pretzels with peanut butter in the middle... delicious! don't worry
kids they were vegan!

3- How fast does it take for the van to smell bad?

as soon as seasick gets in the van and gore rips one of his classic
potato chip farts (the kind one can only produce from a crude vegan
diet of lays classic original and cola), the tour stench begins.
however on ANS tour the van usually smells already, having just been
abused by seasick or whatever foreign crust band joe decides he wants
to be seen with that month. on the rare occasions we enter a clean
van, its usually within three days of not showering and hours upon
hours of intense driving and listening to power violence that ANS
makes quite a foul smell.

4- Can you explain the appeal of getting in a smelly van and sleeping
on floors to some that might not get it?

unfortunately i can not. my family thinks im crazy because i dont make
any money (in fact i lose lots on every tour!) and who wants to sleep
in a basement filled with rats, old pornography and used needles if
they can avoid it? i guess the best explanation i could give someone
is that this is my life, and this is what i have to do.

5- Most random person you've met while on tour? I.E bumping into
someone from home, celebrities and so forth.

in amsterdam seasick ran into a bar tender at the club we played who
was wearing a fun ghouls shirt (local new brunswick misfits cover
band). i had to ask about the shirt, and it turns out he was also from
new brunswick and used to play in SLAW (local new brunswick punk band)
and i think johnny hot dog and the condiments (pre-ergs). it was
strange being that far from home and meeting someone who was from our
town. he was also very nice. i would say he was the most random person
ive met, next to of course the dude we thought we killed in california
on seasick/ ANS tour. but thats a whole other story for another

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Danielle Allen of Offsides

Offsides is a fast hardcore band from Ct. and Fl. respectively. I've had the chance to get to know Danielle recently and since they're out on tour right now I decided to send her some questions. It's always funny to see or hear what touring is like from different bands. Not one band will do or act the same as another and that's what keeps me excited about interviewing bands about tour, plus half of tour is about the stories we encounter and people we meet. Enjoy and go checkout Offsides if they come close to you.

1- What are three of your biggest pet peeves while you are on tour? (this can include things from shows, band members, van, other bands)

Having to convince people that I am in a band and not just some girl along for the ride or trying to get in free to their show. Bands that don’t watch the other bands, especially at a show where only a handful of kids show up. Smoking in venues.

2- Do you have any tips for other vocalist that tour on how to not blow out their voice?

If you are using a PA that just doesn’t cut it, don’t try and yell to be heard. It is the main way I always blow out my voice and every time I should know better. Throat coat tea is also the best measure for keeping what is left of your voice.

3- What do you think the biggest misconception of being in a touring band is?

That tour is one giant party. People don’t realize that while it is a blast, the majority of the time you are dirty, hungry and stressed on money (which is something you see little of while on tour). You drive hundreds of miles to play shows where sometimes no one cares that you are playing, then get to sleep in your smelly, hot van and wake up to do it again. I guess all of that is part of the charm and challenge that makes me love it, but in the end tour is not the all hours rager people think it is.

4- What are some ground rules you have set with the band while on tour? I.E phone use while driving, what happens on tour stays on tour, merch trades and so forth?

1. Always give me a heads up before you get naked. This is usually done by someone saying “If you want to see me naked look over here right now” or “Getting’ nake”.
2. Do not eat other people’s food (that’s a law, not a rule).
3. Don’t drink the rest of someone’s “apple juice”.

5- Sketchiest place you've had to sleep at on tour?

During our tour last summer, we had a show in the Midwest and had a ridiculous drive ahead of us. It was one of those staggering drives where just looking at the map is giving you cabin fever. We made the choice to drive after the show as far as we could before being too tired to continue and then just find a place to sleep. A quick fact about our bands is that we can sleep anywhere, and have done so, without complaining. We sleep on cement, sitting straight up in the most uncomfortable chairs, wherever. Anyone that has ever toured knows that driving at night after driving all day and playing a show sucks. Everyone is tired, sweaty, and usually smells like a men’s locker room. Around 3AM, Matt, the singer of No Harm Done, decides this is the end of tonight’s journey and we needed to get some sleep. We pulled into what appeared to be a closed down steak house. Our van, at the time, was a conversion van with seven seats, four of them being captains chairs. There were seven of us in the van, so we decided that some of us would just sleep outside. We filed out, laid out our tarp, and started to get some sleep. We laid out, looking at the stars and enjoying the cool night air and realized there was something amiss with our cool night’s air. We look around and realize there is a full grease trap very near where we are laying. The air was thick with the scent of thousands of old steaks, burgers and whatever other animals were being fried at this restaurant. After getting a few hours of sleep, I awoke to the sound of a car engine roaring into the parking lot and a fellow with some very heavy boots making his way into the steakhouse. In my sleepy state, I was able to also realize my sleeping bag was moist. It was drizzling and we were all just getting soaked. I rolled over and tapped Charles, our guitarist, to tell him someone just showed up and I think we should probably head out. He rolls over, half asleep and really not listening, and tells me “It’s just rain. Stop being a girl. Just go back to sleep.” I tug my sleeping bag up over my head and drift back to sleep. A few hours after that, I am woken up again, but by a much more urgent sound. An enormous crash comes down and wakes up everyone. A garbage truck is just feet away from us emptying the dumpsters. I poke my head all the way out of the sleeping back to take stock of the situation and see a gathering of leather-clad bikers and some cooks, complete with bloody aprons, giving us the eye from not too far away. They are discussing something together and I feel this is probably a good time to go. I jumped up, got everyone up and we broke down camp and headed off.