tour diary

December 4th-7th: Come Across Tour Leg 2: SA & Vic - Ben Grounds

THURSDAY 4/12/03 - Adelaide

Deep watery thunder was my alarm clock this morning in Tooleybuc. Well, actually, the thunder was the alarm click I liked – the one I didn’t like included some unidentified mechanical noise, and the room-next-door’s inhabitants getting up and going very early and noisily.

We finished at Tooleybuc yesterday’s day of driving which was mostly uneventful. After dinner in Hay the following two hour’s driving treated us to a spectacular lightning show, with a deep red sunset underpinning the clouds. It was quite beautiful (although you really did have to be there).

It was just Jamie and I driving to Adelaide, so there wasn’t much gallivanting about, just talking and loud music.

We picked Ben and Simon up from the airport and went and played our show. The air conditioning was over the top in the Enigma Bar and so we exercised our considerable sway and had its operation ceased. One of the more spectacular rock moves I’ve seen happened tonight: the guy in Bad Girls from the Bible jumped on a PA speaker mid song, stuck a superman-like pose for a few moments, then proceeded to attempt to jump off the speaker, straddle his microphone mid-air then land back on the stage. Of course, he underestimated his groin clearance and the microphone came crashing down with him. He attempted the same move near the end of the set and was more successful.

We had a pretty good set (and an even better rider!) but we didn’t try to jump any mic stands. Jamie did, though, crawl on his knees through the crowd during Boredom You Are Breaking My Heart.

FRIDAY 5/12/03 - Bendigo 

We drove to Bendigo today after an obligatory stop at Big Star records in Adelaide. There was some over whether the route I decided we take was the best one – I thought it was romantic and scenic in a sparse kind of way – and we got there ok in the end.

The show was something special. It was the first all ages show we’ve played in at least 3 years (excluding festivals of course). There were (I think) 5 bands on the bill – 3 of which were some kind of metal, 3 of which had drummers who used a double kick pedal, 3 of which wore only black, 1 of which had members wearing leather pants, and one of which had member using copious amounts of fake blood. The band before us were kind of a gothic version of Van Halen (or something), some parts reminiscent of Whitesnake. The crowd (or the portion of the crowd down the front) were really getting into it, showcasing their best headbanging. Given the festive time of year there were some Santa hats around, but as we all know there is only one Santa. And he was there. He was one of the most elaborate headbangers, and was frequently onstage slammin’ with the bands. In fact Santa was getting into it all in a way that seemed unnaturally possible.

A small kid was talking to Santa earlier in the night, obviously in awe to be able to ask for what he wanted for Christmas.

Just as he left Santa’s knee, Santa hurried to the corner of the room and was doing something in his briefcase. The boy was pointing at Santa and had his Mum come and see what Santa was doing.

Later again, a security guard came in (the band room is where we and Santa’s briefcase are) and asked whose briefcase it was sitting in the corner. We told him it was Santa’s, so he went and found Santa (no doubt moshing). Santa was then forced to empty his briefcase. Santa was then led with force from the venue…

Just before all this happened, Santa was talking to the same little boy again, and as he was doing so he was taking off and rearraging his beard, hair and hat. Poor kid. And all this was happening to gothic Whitesnake!

Our set wasn’t to bad, I experienced some technical difficulties but it was ok. Just before our last sing someone screamed for us to “get off!” because they wanted “Bloodduster!!” ahem…

Bloodduster were next. They were tough. They used fake blood. We left…

SATURDAY 6/12/03 - Melbourne

The Melbourne show was pretty good. I left Melbourne early the next day for Torquay but the boys, following later, managed to leave their load behind. Until it hit them.

SUNDAY 7/12/03 - Bendigo 

The show at Geelong was sparsely attended but very well received. It was probably (in musical terms) our best show all tour, ironically. Or perhaps predictably (all the other shows were paid rehearsals, mate!)…

The drive home the next day saw me without the guys and the guys without me – again I had left them. Which I was glad about, because I got a message from them later in the day saying they had broken down somewhere. And later again saying they’d broken down again. I felt for them…


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