Week 1 Recap - FFAA Euro Headliner

The first week of this tour has been extremely overwhelming. It has exceeded so many expectations and we’re happy that this tour came together so well. With the launch of my new site, I wanted to start doing weekly tour updates in the blog section to give everyone an inside look at what its like.

After a 7 hour overnight flight to Germany, we hopped off the plane looking like zombies. We’ve flown into Frankfurt a couple of times before so we already knew our way around. While walking to the bus, we met up with Vulvodynia. Justice showed up a couple minutes later as we were getting settled in. Since we had toured with Justice for the Damned already, we instantly lit up when we saw each other. After a few minutes of shuffling things into the trailer, we were on our way to Karlsruhe.

The venue was pretty cool. It was in a school complex and there were still children in classrooms above looking down at us and watching us soundcheck. The Venom Prison camp showed up shortly after and we all got acquainted with each other. The overall vibe from all the bands was great so I knew this tour would be a breeze. Larissa and Ben from VP as well as Josean and I chose to share the 4 bunks in the back lounge. We’re all fairly quiet when it comes to being on the bus so we’re getting along real well. The show went off without any issues besides the entire room being made of brick. So the sound was a little bit washy, but overall it was great.

The next day in Leipzig was amazing besides my pedalboard getting left behind, but it happens. Luckily I’m getting it back in the UK. I walked around the small area near the venue and got some really cool pictures. Catering like most shows in Europe was fantastic and the show ended up being pretty intense. For the second day in a row, everyone that came to the show went ape shit. We’re used to good shows, but like I said this tour was starting to surpass what we had expected as far as turnout and overall energy. It was shaping up to be awesome. Post show there was a fucking rave at the venue so when I got out of the shower and walked upstairs, there were hordes of kids with light up masks. It was my nightmare. A couple of us headed down the block searching for food. Luckily a Kebab spot was open and we chowed down.

Day 3 was in Berlin. Its one of my favorite cities and we’re always treated well there. I took a short walk around the area we played in with the Venom Prison camp and we stumbled upon a small little petting zoo in this park. Sound check wasn’t until 6pm so when we got back to the venue I decided to trek all the way into the city to get some pictures. After miles and miles of walking, we came to an island with museums and an amazing cathedral. Although I’m not religious, I have a deep appreciation for architecture. It started to rain so we decided to get back in a hurry. Plus I was starving. Across from the venue theres a famous burger spot called Burgermeister. Its a small stand underneath the train tracks. The wait is a little long but well worth it. The show was great minus it being my first night without my pedal board but we made it work. Luckily Kieran from JFTD hooked it up hard and has been letting me use his shit. I also started the set with my FR which is in a different tuning so yeah, that worked out well.

Vienna was our next stop. This city is probably in my top 3 for Europe. Its gorgeous, the food is great, and the sightseeing is insane. The only problem is that this load in was going to be hell. The venue we always play is called The Viper Room. The shows are great and the fans are amazing, but its 51 stairs down to get there. Everyone was a team player and got the job done so it wasn’t too bad. I didn’t walk around too much just because I was exhausted from the day before so a nice relax day was in order. The show was hot and sweaty as fuck, but Vienna brought their energy full force. I always hate leaving this city but the tour must go on.

Day 5 was at one of my favorite venues in Europe. Backstage in Munich. This venue is kind of a compound comprised of multiple venues. There are three main venues and then a bunch of other outdoor stages for added shows. We’ve played here on every tour we’ve done in Europe and I hope it stays that way. Besides Catering always being great, the shows kick the fuck off every time we’re here. This day was no different. A packed house and insane energy made for a great gig as always. Unfortunately it was super rainy so we didn’t hang outside too much. The show definitely made up for the shot weather.

After Munich we were on to Milan. We’ve played here a bunch so we’re pretty familiar with the area and theres not much around besides a mall and a McDonald’s. Blue, Josean, and I walked to the Golden Arches to grab some grub after sound check. While we were eating of course it started to thunder and lightning so we hurried our asses back to the venue and waited to jam. Since there was nothing around it was way more of a chill/waste time day until we played. I caught up on Netflix shows. The last few shows at this venue were pretty good but today was a different story. Milan brought the noise. After the set, a bunch of people came up asking about my pedalboard which is hilarious because its not mine. This show might have changed my mind a little bit about the potential for shows in Italy. Only time will tell.

Kiff in Aarau, Switzerland was next on the list. Its one of my favorite venues as well because it has literally everything a touring musician needs. Great wifi, comfortable green room, laundry, clean shower, insane catering, and a staff thats super helpful. They also have two stages in this venue so you can get a wide array of tours here. Catering hit at about 6 and we all sat down for a family style dinner. They always put out these long picnic tables for everyone to sit at right in the middle of the floor. Its a cool thing to see it go from that to utter chaos when the show starts. Unfortunately theres a decibel limit so you cant just blast your way through the show. But luckily our sound guy Steve made it work well. The fans were going off so hard that we got a circle pit around Steve’s sound booth AND around the entire venue. Passed the bar, the merch, and back towards stage. Definitely a fun time and I’ll always look forward to going back to this venue.

Day 7 hit yesterday. I woke up feeling super sluggish and my throat felt like I swallowed 10 cases of sandpaper. The venue in Dortmund was super sick. It looked like a total Mad Max wasteland. Graffiti and beat up cars everywhere, benches and chairs made of tires, and shipping containers swapped into dressing rooms and whatnot. We’ve worked with this promoter a couple times before and the shows have been good we had something to look forward to. If I had to make a decision, this would probably be the best show to date. From the time we hit until the end of the set, everyone was moving. For a show in a venue and a city we’ve never played before, it blew us away.

This is going to be an ongoing thing for when we’re on tour. If you guys like what you’re reading and whatnot, make sure you you subscribe to the mailing list to know when I post updates. Thanks for reading and Ill see you all next week with another lengthy post about how much I love Europe and touring over here!