Day 3 for me, day 11 for PB.
I wake up in a room full of punch bags and single mattresses to a chorus of snoring band members. I’m not sure how many bands stayed but as I walked up the stairs there were people crashed out all over the place. Not dissimilar to a scene from an teen movie the morning after a house party.
My head feels pretty heavy… Guessing it’s the wine. I find Huss and we sit on the couch in the venue for a bit. A few more people begin to stir and by 11am there’s a whole crew of staff moving benches around, and bringing out food and cafetière’s full of fresh coffee for breakfast. I wish touring in the UK was like this.
We pull up a bench, grab some coffee and breakfast. Minutes later we’re joined by a host of different bands and venue staff all eating together and chatting. I don’t remember the venue name but the sense of community was great, I felt right at home.
After loading out we say our goodbyes and hit the autobahn. Our intentions were to go to a water park and go for a swim / shower but it’s a bank holiday and as we pull up there’s a big queue of people with swimming gear waiting to get in so our dreams of swimming and showering didn’t quite materialise.
Instead we end up drinking coffee in McDonalds and abusing the wifi for a bit before setting off to Erlangen. The McDonalds over here have a separate coffee stand to their food and also serve soy milk… Not the most exciting fact but for a group of traveling vegans it helps.
We pull up at the venue and I couldn’t really say any of us were massively upbeat at this point. We loaded in quickly and there was hot food waiting for us. We sat and ate with the other band Chimney while one of the venue staff decided to go into rant mode and go off-on-one about one of the bands we played with yesterday being disrespectful and not caring about their music. He spoke truthfully but with everyone feeling a bit worse for wear and slightly down; being ranted at about a band we barely even watched or saw was not the helpful mood lifter that was needed. More of a mood Hoover.
I played guitar a little in the space between load in and doors. People started to arrive and before we knew it the little DIY space we were in was getting pretty full. Not bad for the first ever headline show PB will play in Europe. Definitely helped raise our spirits.
I start to realise tonight was definitely needed. I stood behind the bar and drank peppermint tea watching the first band and by the time it was our stage time I felt super relaxed.
Everyone in the venue stuck around and the set went great. I feel like I play this set a little better and tighter each night, definitely getting there. After we played “I Go Quiet” I got a little nod from Kate on stage which gave me a big grin. Think I did that one justice. I also spotted someone in a Kamikaze Girls shirt which will never not be cool to me, to see someone in a different country wearing our Merch.
The thing I really liked about the show was that it reminded me of a KG show in Tallahassee last year on our US tour. We had a long-ass drive and pulled up to the venue with the lowest of moods between the 4 of us travelling. Up until the moment we played I couldn’t relax and felt really anxious. We played one hell of a show to this tiny speakeasy then afterwards we all stayed in the venue, sat together in a booth and had a few drinks and I finally felt like I’d unwound. Normally after a show I’m too wired to relax or sleep but nights like this come along every now and then and I sleep super soundly and wake up feeling great, a very rare occurrence.
We stayed at the promoter Daniels house that was a super nice loft apartment in the centre of Erlangen. Kate and me slept on his sofa bed which was the exact sofa bed I slept on for two years in one of my old places in Leeds. Back then it felt uncomfortable, but tonight it felt luxury.
This is the reality of touring. It’s not getting messed up every night and having a constant stream of wild nights.
Sometimes it’s just standing behind a bar drinking peppermint tea.