Sunday, 4 October 2009

Evile. Day 6.

When I wake up, the motor home is pulling in to a service station and I rake myself together and stumble out bleary eyed with the rest of the band. We slope off to the washrooms to clean up, brush teeth, baby wipe wash and the like. Top up on petrol, bread and ham and back on the road.

Finland is just so fucking beautiful toady. The sun is out even though is freezing and the scenery makes you sure a grizzly bear will scamper across the road at some point. Don’t think that will happen since it’s not bear Country but you still expect it. There are warning signs for Moose but we never spotted any. L.J from Entombed assures me we will definitely see reindeer at some point, and probably hit one. Errmm…nice.

The other bands are already at the venue by the time we pull up. It’s a massive hall that looks like a run down disused school in the middle of nowhere. We are feeling more and more like we are in Black Metal land.

The venue is fucking sweet, massive with a phat stage and loads of seating and tables dotted about the place. Members of bands and crew are scattered about doing their things and chilling out, killing time. It is split in to two parts with crowd barriers. One has the bar within its enclave and is for the adults, the other has the stage in it and is for anyone without a drink. All ages gig. Interesting set up.

I can’t help noting the set ups of the venues we visit cause I have worked in live music venues for years and am always intrigued to see how other places rock it. Bit of a fucking geeky thing to do but you never know when you might find a cracking idea you can take back home and claim as your own eh!

Victor, bassist from Entombed is walking in from his their bus when we arrive so hellos all round and he shows us in. Hello’s and hugs to the rest of the people we have gotten to know a bit so far and it’s straight down to the business of unloading all the gear.

Me and Tom, my merch buddy are at the other end of the hall to the stage. Looks like I’ll be getting table space only again tonight, no worries, it looked pretty sweet last night so I know I can do it.

Steve the stage manager is stage left fiddling with technical stuff and shows me wa blow with that. Amon Amarth have stage left and Entombed and Evile have stage right. He tells me where our dressing room is, also sharing with Entombed, poor lads!

First task, as always is getting online on the wi-fi and answering emails, sending reports and figures and writing to the familia to let them know I haven’t been gang raped yet, I’m in one piece and that all is well. I think we are all really aware that we are sharing with the mighty Entombed and so no one looks massively relaxed at first.

Our dressing room is up some precarious steel stairs stage left, fuck I bet I end up stacking it on these bad boys. The room has windows over looking the stage with curtains across. Later on I will be peeking through them watching a bit of Entombed without realising that the singer from Amon Amarth is next to me doing the same. We are still not chatting freely with the AA massive. They are the lions and we are the cubs type thing.

Entombed are fucking blinding blokes. Tonight I get a chance to chat with them a bit more and they are a proper laid back and easy going bunch.

Dinner is burrito’s or tortilla or cheeseburgers and chips. My burrito is the best one I’ve ever had, not a fan of Mexican food , find it too rich so probably this was a really shit one. Wash them down with a beer and sweet as a nut it’s wash time.

Seriously feeling like a right scum fuck toady. The shower has no door so I take over the whole locker room making sure everyone knows I’m in and that it’s out of bounds till I’m done. Matt is the nearest to it, pissing about on his guitar so I double check with him that he’ll make sure no one goes in. Victor lends me his hair band, the one bloody thing I forgot and I’m good to go.

That shower was like heaven. I did not ever want to leave it. Running short on time though so bish bash bosh it and crack on with making myself up so I don’t look and feel like I been living in a motor home for the past week.

Merch stand is set up pretty much the same as the night before, sound checks out the way and it’s doors open time. Bigger capacity tonight and after doing so well last night I’m feeling kinda cocky.

Fucking shouldn’t have. Check this out. I sold nothing for the first hour. I literally wanted to kill myself. I’m selling Entombed and Amon Amarth but no Evile. Finally after an eternity of pain, I start selling. By the end of the night I have nearly reached the labels target, thank fuck but I’m hoping and praying that this will be the worst sales night or we are screwed and I’m going to have to go on the game.

There are a whole lot of absolutely wasted Finns coming in and Tom my merch buddy is looking pretty strained too so there’s nowt else to do but pull out the vodka and beer. By the time Entombed come on stage we are both merry and taking the piss out of the idiot drunks who keep falling about the stand and trying to barter prices down.

I skive off the stand a whole bunch cause there is nothing to do, no one at it for huge periods of time, and go for smokes out the dressing room window, drink, watch the bands and check my emails, but generally skive, it’s just too depressing.

Evile leave the stage after they’re set to the crowd chanting ‘more more more’. Fuckin A. I get a lot of creepy drunk men asking me if I want to come have a drink with them, jeez, it’s like being behind the bar for fucks sake. I wouldn’t mind but they’re not fucking buying anything, just wasting my time. Buggers.

The staff there are fucking genius, and after all is packed up I hang around and smoke with them, people are so friendly when your out on the road and not from around their parts. Tonight we were very definitely in Black Metal land. As the kids walked past I wondered which ones have burnt down churches and have serial killer tendencies. Quite a fun game as it goes. I’m pretty sure I nailed it on a few of them.

Me and Tom have for sure bonded now. He is a fucking winner and I’m well chuffed I get to hang with him every night. My new drinking partner.

I got to chat with Alex form Entombed tonight for the first time too. The fucking coolest guy. We chatted about family and tattoo’s and travelling, he has this kind of quiet Shaolin monk vibe going on. All wise and knowing but with smiley eyes. He seems kinda unapproachable on meeting, but he is proper fucking laid back and helpful and totally has time for us Evile minions.

L.J is also a number one legend. He is just the fucking sweetest guy. Well chatty and friendly. He’s quitting smoking so isn’t buying them and now and again will pop up on the scrounge for one, all apologetic like. Funny as fuck. I got to meet the drummer too, who’s name I can’t spell, Ollu or Olli? Well funny guy. And Victor, although not reliable for a beer run, is the sweetest guy. Tom and me pull him up on his hair. It’s fucking long man! We are standing at the merch table deep in conversation about it for far too long before catching ourselves, laughing at how gay we are and shrugging it off with shuffling feet and drinks to mouths.

Basically a really cool group of mother fuckers, which is sweet cause all this can be a bit daunting.

It’s pissing it down with rain, I have no idea how all those people got there, and how the hell they all got home but its lights out and off to the motor home. Ol is already in bunk, Matt and Mike are making sarnies and Ben is stomping around cursing, trying to get his broke arse phone to work. Lyall is chatting away and all is as it should be as we get ourselves tucked in, gas heater on, ready for another much needed sleep, all be it cold before we do it all again tomorrow.

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