O GOD SO MANY THINGS
the end and everything after: it's just gone 1am and it's mostly over. The venue is empty, erie dark and silent. We've finished loading out and go back in for goodbyes. We're slightly drunk and slightly high and still damp and dazed from the show. The bar staff are sitting round a table downstairs, smoking and waiting for us to clear out. One of them has a big fur coat like richey manic. I wander over to borrow a light. - and then we'll be out of your lives forever, i say. She looks me in the eyes, and, in the most bored voice in Nottingham tonight, sighs - excellent.
and our tour is over.
The worst part about being a touring circus, easily my most heart busting problem of being in a band, over money, sales, money or whatever, is leaving places. and the better the show/scene, the nicer the people, and the more we do it, the harder it gets. It's like being trapped in some terrible indie quantum leap episode, where every day you wake up in a new town, make new friends and see new bands and then come midnight you drive to the omnipresent magic travelodge. and when you pull out of the carpark the next morning, you have to start all over again.
THIS MONTH HAS BEEN THE WORST FOR THAT.
by which i mean, the last month has been the most positive and awesome time ever. I don't just mean the usual; many people came and everyone had fun speech, tho that happened mostly everywhere and everywhere respectively.
October is bands on tour season. we peek at each other thru blacked out splitter van windows in service stations at 3am. After a few days on tour, you can start to feel kinda processed; no matter how awesome (you think) your little circus is, yr still just venue fodder, calender filler, a bubble easily burst by one bored barmaid with an excellent coat and the only lighter.
bar staff of the toilet circuits of the world, this time you were too late. We have consistently had our minds bent out of bitterness on this tour. We didn't have to argue for a bottle of gin once. That's never happened before. We've met bands that we've never heard of that are A M A Z I N G. We've met promotors that promote! Promotors that love what they do and want to be proud of their local talent and fucking work and flyer and network and help and foster a scene and make it look like the easiest, most natural thing ever. In that way, this tour has felt like a succession of party crashes, where, up until we play, we're never quite sure if people are there because we are, or there because it's clearly the best place to be.
It's also been the total opposite of that. I told you our minds were messed up. It's not just being overwhelmed by so many familiar faces, it's that all you faces seem to know each other, or have come to visit each other, or are-dating-and-blatantly-in-love-with each other. It feels like some massive messed up beautiful family reunion and we got to play prodigal son each night. So many alternate universes we could settle down in..
I'd like to think that this is no fluke. That we have left behind the world of promotion being a 3 year old black and white photo of us in a window, and local support bands who want to be lost prophets or whatever. I'd like to think of this tour as a statement of where/what "our" scene is, post crash, right now. And, best of all, it really has fuck all to do with us. Most of these shows would have been awesome shows even if we never turned up. A whole bunch of thriving communities starting to see the rewards of the last few years graft. People proud of -their- bands. For all the cynics in this industry that are my age or older, THE KIDS ARE GOING TO SHOWS AGAIN.
So this tour ends on a small piece of forgotten grass just outside Birmingham city centre by the abandoned old train station, us and playlounge lighting the last of our sky lanterns and watching as they sail out of view over the skyline. urgh hippies.
this tour never ends.
thanks for your time.