24 April 2009

The brown brown grass of home

Oh hey, we made it back, yeah. You were wondering.
To make excuses, the dearth of wi-fi and/or unwillingness to pay £15 for 30 minutes of internet access, coupled with, y'know, the fact that we were spending our precious European free time doing things that involved not wasting away in front of a computer, means we only blogged thru the halfway mark. So, here's the rest, in a nutshell...

Left Paris and rocketed through the night to Amsterdam, immediately blew out the power in our hotel after attempting to plug in our myriad electronic devices via a maze of adapters ("I dunno, I just went to turn the TV on and then... bam!"), woke up in Amsterdam on Rob's birthday, shopped, coffee shopped, shopped more, withstood harsh interrogation and escaped a savage beating after covertly taking photos of sex workers in the Red Light District, played live on Dutch national radio, sat in traffic, festivaled in Rotterdam, adopted an often-profitable Darker My Love vs. A Place To Bury Strangers inter-band German backstage poker habit (pictured below), played in a subway station in Stuttgart amidst a multiethnic all-ages German reggae club, successfully smuggled merch into Switzerland (shhh), sat in more traffic, played in Munich, sat in that hellbox of a van (also pictured below) for 8 hours from there to Berlin, saw Berlin by the pre-dawn light, and said goodbye to the Strangers... all before enduring the most brutalriffic, sleep-deprived, sweaty, nauseous day trapped in that scorching hellbox for 17 hours, rushing to get from Berlin to the Chunnel in France, not stopping, sitting in traffic, realizing we'd miss it, rebooking for a later one, then missing that one after falling victim to the British borderpeople's uhhh-we-just-got-a-new-computer-system thumb-twiddling and subsequently sitting in the van in pissy drizzle at the gate in a remote parking lot for an extra two hours (except for Jim, who walked off his rage in the parking lot before fashioning a bed on the clavinet case in the back for the latter half), and finally getting to the other side only to drive another 2 hours in to London.

this is what Germany looks like.

We had 3 gorgeous days in London, which was a fine way to come down from the tour. Did a radio thing here and an interview there, played 2 amazing shows, but mostly stuck to milling about the neighborhood around the luxurious Tommy Miah's Raj Hotel (aka The Raj) and its Indian canopy beds. In all earnestness though, thanks to everyone that made this fun and successful and all that - people that drove us around and let us use their gear and bought us drinks and bought us food and showed us strangers-in-a-strange-land around and brought everyone they know to see us play and endured being in that van with us and sold our merch for us and was nice to us - thank you.

And on Monday it was all over. We miraculously made our flight back (after our driver somehow managed to actually run out of gas on the way to the airport - that's right - one van, two different drivers, two empty gas tanks, one on the first day, one on the last), and 24 hours later, we were back in 99-degree L.A. Scorching hot and crystal clear. What a long, strange, weird, wet 'n' wild trip 'twas.

p.s. more photos to come.


Anonymous said...

For those who can get into Dime-a-dozen, the radio acoustic thing is here:-


I hope no-one heard that and thought they were going to get Fleet Foxes in London last weekend!

Anonymous said...

...and one live show (in Glasgow) turned up.

Anonymous said...

what's up next, dudes?