Gig Archives: 2011
(Disclaimer: this may be incomplete or inaccurate)
Saturday, January 29th, 2011
with Like Totally:Another try with this band, with a similar lineup (but with Rik and
Susan Z on vocals, as well as Holland doing some leads as well).
Like last time a month ago, this was a private party and we were
eventually shut down by police. Except this time we were up in
Sleepy Hollow and started on time and got to play most of our
our songs (almost 3 whole sets of total dancey 80's hits). It was
also outside like last time, but protected by a canopy as it
started to rain... but the rain collected in the center of the
thing. Fearing it was collapse people used brooms to push the
water bubble off to the side... where it nearly took out the
mixing board. Oh yeah.. this time I brought keyboards and guitar
and harmonica... and saxophone so I could blurt those 3 notes
in "Never Say Never." I am the Swiss Army Knife of music!
Saturday, February 5th, 2011This band is still kicking it down for the corporate party crowd
on the peninsula! The band continues to morph, though it was me and
Scrote, Paul and Karina on vocals, John on drums, but newbies (brought
up from LA) Ron on sax and Brett on bass. Small world - I'll come to
learn during the night that Ron's wife is pals with Nils/Dawn, and
they were actually at their wedding too - we just didn't remember each
other from the event. Anyway, the gig was for a company that MIRV
works for (and he joined us - taking a wild solo on "Use Me"). Of course
he and House go way back so it's ironic House couldn't make the gig.
Anyway, easy songs, tough crowd (though some were loose enough to dance)
and great food/desserts which we were allow to have along with the party
guests. Plus it was a lovely hot night down there at the foothills campus
country club in Palo Alto. Sweet!
Friday, March 11th, 2011The first night of Prog by Prog West #1 -
And what a way to debut this new festival (or brand name or whatever it is)!
Starting the night was Inner Ear Brigade - totally different lineup
than last time I saw these guys, but oh so large now and wonderful.
Then Brian Kenney Fresno's Super Sweaty Scratch & Sniff Variety Hours
with Brian Kenney Fresno of course, laying out some extra duty prog
this time around, including the quite fitting "Stick Warrs."
We closed out the evening. Due to illness we still haven't gotten the time
to polish the new tunes, so we played the hits, which were still well
received by old and new fans alike. Moorea was just getting over a cold but
still hit the notes like a champ. Really great crowd all night long.
This was at the Starry Plough, which meant there were weird sound gremlins
all night, but the point still got across, I think.
Saturday, March 12th, 2011The second night of Prog by Prog West #1: An evening with miRthkon!
We rented out the Ashby Stage in Berkeley, which meant we were there at 2pm hammering
together risers, making a video screen out of giant black flats, loading
in all our own sound gear and setting it up. It was all hands on deck,
including our own sound guy Ivan. An eight person juggernaut we were,
creating a massive multimedia music and video extravaganza from the
blank slate of the empty stage. Man I was sleepy (only got a few hours
the night before) but I got some wakey-wakey love from Dr. Pepper.
Another good showing - a quality crowd, and they made it all the way
through our 100 minute onslaught, to which they responded with a standing o.
There was some shmoozing, but we had to pack up and get the fuck out of
there as well as reset the entire complex back to original state by
midnight. I gouged my thumb on an exposed screw carrying some heavy flat
back into the store room. Oh well. It's what we do for our art. In any
case, Prog by Prog West was a wonderful time.
Thursday, March 31st, 2011We played in SF at the Blue Macaw (the old 12 Galaxies
space). Also on the bill: Dominique Leone
and Headshear. It was great to play with both these acts,
having known about them for a while. An awesome hot night in the
Mission with three bands performing all kinds of creative
music. We actually debuted our new song "Letting Go of Life" despite
the fact we hadn't played it together as a complete 5-piece yet.
Still needs work.
Sunday, April 10th, 2011Sleepytime Gorilla Museum was having its last show ever ever that
night at the Independent in SF. Needless to say I was planning on
going and already had my tickets. Also needless to say it sold out
rather quickly. So at the last minute they added their penultimate show
ever ever as a mantinee that afternoon (also at the Independent),
and asked MoeTar to be one of the opening acts. Cool! We went
on first at 3pm to a very lovely and responsive crowd. Nice to meet
all kinds of prog rock fans from around the country who I met on line
and have flown in to see SGM. Moe! did a solo set before
the main act clobbered us with half their material (they played the
other half during the final set that night). I was basically in the club
from noon to 1am, except for a dinner break with Jenya to get some eats
at the Burger Haus across the way. What a day.
Friday, April 29th, 2011Super fun gig and hanging out in Chico, CA. We were invited up there
by the awesome local band Clouds on Strings who were also the
hosts and brains behind a whole evening festival called "Prog Out
With Your Hog Out." The whole thing happened at the Blue Room (where
I last played in Chico with Species Being 12 years ago). All the bands
who performed were rad - the new guitar/drums duo Mahout Chisel,
then the wonderfully post-rocky Birds of Fire, then Clouds,
then us, and then the awesome energetic Hail the Sun. I think the
mean age of all participants and audience members was almost half mine.
There were also at least 6 Matts among the various bands' members.
Subbing on drums for the missing Dave (in DC/NY at the time) was
Jon Arkin who once again heroically learned all this material and saved
our ass. We partied back at the Clouds house, talking about
prog bands of yore until 4:30am. I slept on the floor, then got up at
7am to drive back home. Still living the dream.
Thursday, May 12th, 2011Fun gig at the Hotel Utah, playing first before the awesome
Gutbucket from NYC went on and killed it. Side note: they actually played
with miRthkon years ago (not when I was in band) when coming through
on a previous tour. They were rad. Closing the night was the epic
Inner Ear Brigade. Due to scheduling snafus (mostly via unclear
communication from the club) we found out at the last minute we had a
hard start at 8:30pm. Who the hell starts that early at a rock club?
And then when I got there first the soundguy said we were supposed to
start at 8pm. Jeez, guys. Get it together.
Thursday, June 16th, 2011MoeTar takes Los Angeles! Well, actually Fullerton. Anyway it was a great gig.
In fact it was a CalProg gig - a special non-festival event at Steamer's Jazz Club
and Cafe. Starting the evening was the delightful and talented Tom Brislin
doing a solo set on piano/voice/cajon. Then we rocked it. First time using
Mainstage for my sounds - worked out okay. Also played "Friday Night Dreams"
for the first time live. Closing the night was a faithful and rocking
Brain Salad performing a two-hour tribute to ELP, including
gong and modular moog synth.
Friday, July 22nd, 2011As part of the Marin Creative Music Series we played a gig at the
Mill Valley Golf Clubhouse. First gig in Marin! Also my first gig using the
new Korg SV-1 as my controller. Once again Jon subbed on drums.
We did the same set as the gig in Fullerton last month and killed it, with the
Marin newbies being quite appreciative. Opening was local singer/songwriter
Rick Harden. Nice stuff. We also ditched the stripey clothes - mine were getting
Saturday, August 6th, 2011House party in Palo Alto! It was open to the public - a gathering of
prog/avant lovers assembling there at Glenn Cornett's abode where he had a nice
performance area in his living room upstairs. We were kind of an oddball - a more
straight ahead rock band compared to the smaller ensembles and solo acts. But we
did a good job holding back the volume and really came across nicely to the
appreciative audience. I hung out well into the evening as more of the half dozen
acts continued to set up and perform geeking out about music and comparing how messed
up the electoral system in America is compared to the system in Australia, which has
its own problems, apparently.
Saturday, August 20th, 2011Just like Casino Royale did four years ago, we played a party at a classic
car show down in Pebble Beach. Scrote actually couldn't make the gig,
but Steve as always expertly filled in on guitar. We also had a new drummer
in the fold, Michael, who totally nailed it. The rest of the band was me,
Jamison, Paul, and House - we were pretty damn solid, and well received.
We also got treated well, food/hospitality wise.
Dinner set, then a dancing set, then a long schlep back home.
Steve drove, and we geeked out about microphones, DAW plugins and various bands.
Wednesday, August 31st, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern America/Canada 2011Hamilton, Ontario @ The Casbah, w/ FAT32.
First gig of the Eastern-North American Tour!
We were supposed to all fly to NY the previous Saturday and have several days of rehearsals
before the tour started. Hurricane Irene thought differently. Our only option to make the
first gig was to drive. Me, Trey, and Scott drove from the Bay Area starting Sunday at midnight,
arriving Wednesday a few hours before the gig started. Timb, Randall, and Toby (who happened to
be on the west coast at the time) drove from Seattle, picked up the van in Chicago, picked up
the trailer in Connecticut, then picked up the FAT32 guys (John, Tony, and Rudy)
who flew in from France after the
storm, then spent 8 hours looking for the FAT32 equipment the airline lost, then drove to the
gig to arrive just in time like us. Ches flew in from NYC that afternoon. So pretty much I met everybody
in the band for the first time right
before playing all this unrehearsed material live and on zero sleep. We nailed it. A very good
sign of musical joy to come... FAT32 were a total blast - and I will enjoy watching
all of their following opening shows.
Thursday, September 1st, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Toronto, Ontario @ Lee's Palace, w/ FAT32 and Major Entertainer Mike H.
Finally got some sleep! After soundcheck hit a nearby Korean restaurant
with impossibly friendly and efficient service
and great food. Still no sign of Danny (who is meeting up with us at some point to replace
Ches for a string of shows). Another rocking show. Large club, large crowd. The tour in full swing now.
Friday, September 2nd, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Ottawa, Ontario @ Mavericks, w/ FAT32 and Major Entertainer Mike H.
First time in this big city. Club near some outdoor market/touristy area where we found
some cheap good Indian food. This time caught Mike's set. Hilarious! Kind of like a mixture
of Fuxedos, Kaufman, and Neil Hamburger. Danny did finally appear (after flying into
Detroit and renting a car and driving here).
Saturday, September 3rd, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Rouyn-Noranda, Quebec @ Caberet de la Derniere Chance, as part of the FME Music Festival.
A long, lovely drive into northern Quebec. Lots and lots of lakes as we neared the Hudson Bay.
Tiny, tiny town with this strangely large festival. Small stage, so I set up on the floor with
the keyboard. Free dinner served up in the large church down the street. Checked out some of
the other bands and exhibits and played ping pong downstairs in the club until showtime.
One of my favorite shows of the tour. First time we made it through Sophia without any weird
technical issues. The final encore (Labyrinth of Light) ended with Timb
flying across the stage with his guitar, landing in the drumkit, taking out all the drums (and
Monday, September 5th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Montreal, Quebec @ Cabaret de Mile-End, w/ FAT32 and Major Entertainer Mike H.
Had a lovely day off driving back into more civilized parts of Quebec, and now Danny is
on board (Ches headed back to NYC for a week of gigs planned a while ago). Had a "sticks 'n
picks" rehearsal in the hotel room before the gig. Late night bagels, super fresh and delicious.
Montreal has incredible bagels/Jewish delis. Did you know this? We all had wonderful smoked meat
sandwiches at a deli the next morning.
Tuesday, September 6th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Quebec City, Quebec @ Le Cercle, w/ FAT32 and Major Entertainer Mike H.
What a lovely city! As euro as they say it is. Plus there was an awesome restaurant attached
to the club where we got free dinner. Took a solo night walk up into the hills before the show.
The band is liking my playing enough to open up the keyboard solo for Brazen Serpent. Plus
we're starting to really cement some cool improvs in between songs while people retune.
That wrapped up the Canada portion of the tour.
Wednesday, September 7th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Portland, ME @ Space Gallery, w/ The Watchers.
Due to poor planning around the border, FAT32 couldn't make it to tonight's gig in time
(they arrived hours later). We arrived in lovely, rainy Portland with no openers. But
while at the nearby music store (where the guy there recognized Trey and started playing
Bungle on the store loudspeakers) we got a lead on some local openers who were super
stoked to fill in last minute. And they were pretty good! Dinner was at J's Oyster Bar.
The guys were practically salivating the past few days thinking about this place.
However I don't eat seafood, so I got a pesto pasta dinner, which wasn't bad for a seafood joint.
Thursday, September 8th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Boston, Massachusetts @ Brighton Music Hall, w/ FAT32 and Kayo Dot.
First big American city of the tour. Not much of a college town, though.
Really great to have both FAT32 and Kayo Dot on the bill. A special night of music.
I re-met Terran from KD (who I crossed paths briefly in the Oakland/miRthkon world years ago).
After the gig hung out way too long on the sidewalk watching drunk Bostonians spill out of
the bar across the way and get into fights.
Friday, September 9th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Burlington, Vermont @ Higher Ground Lounge w/ FAT32 and Kairos.
We got up super early this morning to take a side trip to Polly's Pancake Parlor in New
Hampshire en route to the gig. Totally worth it. The gig itself was the only real dud of the
tour. I played here before with Faun Fables. Found out there was this local third band opening
up. Instrumental metal math prog rock. But nothing seemed to bring people out
today. Adding insult to injury was the ridiculous DJ party going on the other big room in this
club, which was basically a high school dance. We found out later that due to the Hurricane
Irene damage Phish decided to have a reunion benefit show. Tickets were going on sale for that
tomorrow, and about 2000 people were already waiting in line for them.
Saturday, September 10th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Milford, Connecticut @ Daniel Street, w/ FAT32.
Ate a lovely Tibetan lunch in Northampton en route to the gig. I think this is my first gig
ever in Connecticut. A fun one, though the stage sound was kind of difficult. Ches is back,
and he and Danny both played (Danny on percussion). Some people in the audience were hula
hooping to the music. After the gig the guys dropped me off in the Bronx at my sister Lisa's place.
The next few days will be worrisome as it's the 10th anniversary of 9/11, and we're a bunch
of dudes in a black van with costume robes with labels that say "made in Syria."
Monday, September 12th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Philadelphia, Pennsylvania @ Johnny Brenda's, w/ FAT32 and Cleric.
Day off in NYC spent rehearsing some newer SC3 material that we'll end up not playing on tour
after all. Then I headed to Philly to stay at my parent's house. This was a fun gig after a
well rested day off. After soundcheck we and the FAT32 guys went to get cheesesteaks for
dinner then run up and down the museum steps made famous in Rocky. My brother Ben came out to
see the show despite it being a school night. Cleric was staggeringly awesome. FAT32 was
incredible once again (perhaps given a mental boost by their new debut CD having been dropped shipped to
the club). We had a good show, too. Great crowd. After the gig I drove back to NYC (lest I drive there
in the trafficky afternoon tomorrow). Got to my sister's place around 4:45am.
Tuesday, September 13th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011New York, New York @ Le Poisson Rouge, w/ FAT32 and Kayo Dot.
Lisa and I had brunch in the Bronx the headed downtown. I met the gang at the club and
loaded in. Early soundcheck. This was a super fun show as both Danny and Ches were on drumkit
and April on percussion. Lisa came to the show too. So did Macaulay Culkin, apparently.
A real great night of music. John Zorn sat right behind me on stage the whole time.
Stayed the night at Toby's in Brooklyn after a late night hang at The Narrows.
Wednesday, September 14th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Baltimore, Maryland @ the Ottobar, w/ FAT32 and Baltimare.
I didn't know the Ottobar moved! Last time I played here (11 years ago?) it was in
a totally different location. Much bigger now. That's one surprise. The other is
they threw a local band onto the gig, which
is always a nuisance (as it nullifies soundcheck, pretty much). But it was also a
a 9 piece! Oy. Dinner at Obrycki's. Most of the guys got whole
crabs which they just dump on the table and you hammer to bits and eat them.
We were super late starting as we had to restring the jaguar and the tuning pegs were
all messed up. This was the last gig with Danny (it was cheaper/easier for him to fly
out of Baltimore than NYC).
Thursday, September 15th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Cleveland, Ohio @ Grog Shop, w/ FAT32.
Long ass drive to the gig. So we were a little tired upon arrival. Still, we brought it.
Timb dove into the drums again at the end of the set. Ouch. This was probably the most
Bungle-centric crowd of the tour. One dude lifted up his shirt to reveal tattoos of each
album. Somebody yelled during the set, "My Ass is on Fire!" Almost lost my phone. Left it
on some random table. Luckily John picked it up.
Friday, September 16th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Ferndale, Michigan @ The Magic Bag, w/ FAT32.
Started the day with lovely brunch in Oberlin, OH. Also had an amazing veggie Ethiopian
dinner once in town at Ferndale (near Detroit). Turns out this is a good town for gigs.
I left my Radar score at the last gig, but later happily discovered I had a backup printout.
I should really memorize that shit. It was such
a lovely crowd that we did a second encore for the only time all tour (Combat for the Angel).
Saturday, September 17th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Chicago, Illinois @ Empty Bottle, w/ FAT32 and Anatomy of Habit.
We had a ridiculous early load in due to the club trying to squeeze an extra show
in between our soundcheck and our gig. Totally weird and actually kind of annoying.
I guess they were worried about bad ticket sales. Anyway, this clobbered any real
soundcheck, but afforded us time to
get delicious dinner in town (what's with the amazing Mexican food in Chicago?).
Anyway, the show ended up being super packed. One of our biggest shows all tour.
Anatomy of Habit were rad. FAT32 set it up, and then we knocked it in.
One bummer: while line checking I brought out a cup of whiskey for the set and set
it by the monitors. Upon reaching the stage to play I discovered somebody in the crowd drank it and left
a crumpled empty cup.
One hilarious anecdote: before the gig Toby was hanging in the van parked in the street
just to have a quiet place to work on his laptop. He heard some weird noises and looked
outside to discover some dudes trying to steal the spare tire. He scared them away.
Monday, September 19th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Washington, DC @ Rock & Roll Hotel, w/ FAT32 and Cleric.
Had one more amazing meal before leaving town (a mexican-fusion brunch at Nana Organic),
then had a long day off driving to DC,
arriving at 5am. Slept and pretty much woke up and went right to
the gig. Once again Cleric as well as FAT32 opened up. Awesome stuff. I was pleased
to see my old Binghamton housemate Joe in attendance. Last time I saw him was 11 years
ago at the Ottobar when he randomly showed up to a Mumble & Peg show and he was the
only person in the audience. The audience tonight was also not so big in comparison to
the rest of the tour. Tough town on a tough night, I guess. Still a good show.
Tuesday, September 20th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Chapel Hill, North Carolina @ Local 506, w/ FAT32.
Finally entered the hot and muggy south. I love it. Easy gig. Parked out back near
the garbage bins and grease traps of two neighboring Indian restaurants. Got some
awesome Turkish food down the street before the gig. Tonight's show was partly fueled
by homemade Romanian firewater that a friend of Trey's brought. Fun performance, good
crowd, but I kinda fell into my now-standard mid-tour bipolar funk. At least I
recognized this and avoided all social contact for the remainder of the night and
slept it off.
Wednesday, September 21st, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011West Columbia, South Carolina @ Conundrum Music Hall, w/ FAT32.
A last minute add-on gig thanks to local hero Tom Law who set this up in his
new performance space. Treated to awesome southern hospitality (including free
chili dinner at a nearby house) and had a great
show (especially in comparison to a day off). Small audience, but the place was
packed, and they were all supreme fans. First time really getting the fanboy nervous
stares and giggles from younger dudes who stumbled upon the band hanging out back.
One guy had a bootleg from a Bungle show on CD - he gave it to Ches and we listened
to it tomorrow during the drive. Funny shit.
Thursday, September 22nd, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Atlanta, Georgia @ The Earl, w/ FAT32 and Mediocre Machine.
A fun gig, unhampered by rain, or the club that (like in Baltimore) added a local
opener - and one that had, among the standard items cluttering the stage, two marimbas
and percussion (used for like 2 songs). But they were pretty good and brought people out.
Got dinner at the club which was pretty good. During the meal Lee (ex-drummer from
Estradasphere who lives in the area) came up behind me and grabbed me, thinking I was
Adam. I guess we really do look a like alike. As the tour winds down things are getting
sillier - Randall came out during FAT32's set and freaked out on stage. During our set
Lee yelled out "Jai Young Stacey!" Load out in the pouring rain.
Friday, September 23rd, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Asheville, North Carolina @ Grey Eagle, w/ FAT32.
The Mediocre Machine gigs tipped me off about a brunch place in town called Home Grown,
so we ate there before splitting town. Biscuits n' gravy galore.
Easy drive through KKK country to Asheville. A big big club with an awesome restaurant
built in. After dinner I walked by myself in the dark outskirts near the club, suddenly
befriended by an older man on a bicycle who gave me a long story about his struggle to
find work. I gave him some cash. Paying back the southern hospitality I received thus far.
This was the last show on the tour for FAT32, so I watched it while
already feeling nostalgic. We had a super energetic show. Man our robes were pretty
ripe at this point.
Saturday, September 24th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Eastern US/Canada 2011Lexington, Kentucky @ Buster's - part of the Boomslang Fest w/ The Swans and Sir Richard Bishop!
Yes, wrapped up the tour with this random festival gig. I was pleased to find the club had
statues of dobermans all over ("Buster" is my dobie Laszlo's nickname). Big place, though we were
playing on the floor near the bar (they were alternating bands on the floor and the stage).
Still, it was a well organized festival. We had time to check in at the hotel, then return for
free dinner in the roped-off talent area. No sound check - it was super punk. Plus we only had an
hour to play so it was a radically different setlist. This might have thrown me off as I totally
biffed Halloween of all things. Then hung out all night basically celebrating our tour. I was
psyched to finally catch the Swans for the first time ever and they played two soul-crushing hours.
Long goodbyes with the bandmates in the hotel that night. Up super early to catch a flight home,
where they charged me $100 extra for my keyboard which was over the 50 pound limit (it was 53 pounds).
Thursday, September 29th, 2011Returned to Steamer's (in Fullerton, CA) thanks once again to Papa J who brought us down
once again! Drove down that day with Matt/Dave. Easy as we were borrowing most of the gear
from local band The Source. Opening up was our good friend Brian Kenney-Fresno
and the crowd (mostly containing people who caught us here last time) ate it up.
We had a fun time playing our set. The Source had some tech issues but were quite
awesome for such a young band - they got an awesome future ahead of them. Drove back the next
day with Dave (Matt left super early that morning to fly back and play a noontime gig).
Thursday, October 13th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Fall Europe 2011Most of us (me, Trey, Timb, Danny, Olivia) flew into France first to meet up,
then after a day of acclimating flew to Iceland where we met up with Shahzad.
With no real rehearsal (outside of the usual "picks and sticks" in the hotel room)
we had our first gig of the tour at IÐNO, going on last around midnight.
This was part of the Airwaves Festival, which was tons of fun and very well attended.
We had a packed house despite Yoko Ono performing elsewhere at the same time, and
got some really great reviews of this first set of the tour.
The sad thing is we didn't have any real time to get out of Reykjavik and see the
country. But I got to hang with other friends who were attending the festival (Tom
Windish and Eli Crews) and eat some Pizza Pronto which is Shahzad's favorite.
Speaking of which it was great to finally play a gig with Shahzad, which hadn't
happened yet despite knowing each other for 12 some-odd years.
Friday, October 14th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Fall Europe 2011Flew back to France and started the tour proper. First gig was on the outskirts
of Paris at Saint Germain en Laye at a club called La Clef. French touring is
awesome: lots of great food and hospitality. Maybe too much access to cookies
and chocolates and red bull: but I guess I needed some of the above to keep me
awake after pulling an all-nighter traveling here from Iceland. Anyway, Zarboth
opened the evening nicely, then we actually went on next as our touring partners
a.P.A.t.T. were stuck in traffic, dealing with van issues, having rough
border crossings, etc. and were running late. Fair enough. We rocked it, and
then a.P.A.t.T. came on and I gladly watched the first of many sets they'll
perform over the coming weeks. Awesome stuff. Plus Rudy (who did sound for FAT32
last tour) was doing their sound, so another familiar face joined us on the road.
Saturday, October 15th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Fall Europe 2011Next up was Poitiers, playing at Le Confort Moderne. Big club with an amazing
strobe animation art gallery inside. a.P.A.t.T. played a wonderful set,
then we had a great one, except the crowd was strangely too polite and quiet.
In fact, this was the only gig thus far we didn't play an encore because we
finished and the audience was pretty much silent - too embarrassing to walk back out
and play more stuff when that happens. Weird.
Sunday, October 16th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Fall Europe 2011Then to Nantes, performing at La Scene Michelet. Smaller club with an upstairs
performance area, but it was packed and hot and sweaty and a lot of fun. Much
better response than last night. Really digging what our tourmates a.P.A.t.T.
are doing at this point. It was a good night despite having to suddenly launch into a
five minute improv without Trey who needed a break from the stage to deal with
some sudden stomach flu/food poisoning. We covered pretty well - nobody really noticed.
Trey was fine after that. Stayed that night at a house full of local music lovers
and old friends of the band. They had an incredible amount of vinyl in their collection
recorded at Polymorph.
Monday, October 17th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Fall Europe 2011And then to Rennes for our final French show, at L’Antipode. Big club, and everything
was easy/fun except they had a decibel meter which if it reaches a certain point the
whole system shuts down without warning. Kind of scary, and supposedly we came within
a few hairs of getting silenced a couple times. The lack of sleep had gotten to me: I
sat on the couch for a minute and next thing I know it's showtime. So I had to hit the
stage with a major nap hangover. Ugh. I warmed up quickly, though.
Tuesday, October 18th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Fall Europe 2011Another allnighter full of travel got us to across the English Channel by ferry
and into England, driving on the wrong side of the road in a tour van with the
steering wheel on the right side. Ugh. First gig was in London at the Garage.
Very fun show at a huge venue, and another easy two-band bill. Met various people
face to face I only knew previous from on-line there, including two SETI@home fans
who came to the gig specifically to meet me. That was pretty neat. Had the next day
off (due to last minute cancelled Bristol gig) which we spent driving to Liverpool
to hang out at the a.P.A.t.T. complex.
Thursday, October 20th, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Fall Europe 2011Back on the road, playing in Manchester at Islington Mill. Fun gig even though
there were 5 bands on the bill. Honestly I missed the first two as I was eating dinner
or wandering around town soaking up the local color. I can only hang in clubs so long,
you know? Then a.P.A.t.T., then us, then this awesome Swedish band Circle
who shock-and-awed us with their unexpected 80's hair metal twist on Kraut rock.
Went back to Liverpool for the night.
Friday, October 21st, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Fall Europe 2011Huge festival gig in Birmingham, playing at the Custard Factory as part of the
annual Supersonic Festival. Large venue, long thorough soundcheck, wonderful catering.
Played conkers with the a.P.A.t.T. crew backstage until showtime.
Great other acts going on this first night of the festival on various stages included
DJ Scotch Egg and Mike Watt and the Missing Men. I didn't get a chance
to talk to Watt before the gig, but during our set (which was fun as hell and super
high energy thanks to the huge, attentive crowd) he yelled
to us from the side of the stage, "you guys are a bunch of bad asses!" Awesome.
Saturday, October 22nd, 2011
On Tour: Secret Chiefs 3 Fall Europe 2011Final gig of this mini-epic tour was back in Liverpool at this giant multi-media
complex called the Contemporary Urban Center. Ex-Eastern Island Head started
the evening with three guys playing four percussion guitars. Neat stuff. Then, sadly,
the last a.P.A.t.T. set I'll see for a while, then us. A more intimate
evening to round out the tour, and we went kind of crazy during the improv bits.
Tour over, we packed up, said our goodbyes to the a.P.A.t.T. crew, then had
yet another allnighter heading back to Erquery, France, dropping people off at
various airports en route. Not me, though - I stayed another week in France on
vacation with Jenya. That was rad.
Saturday, December 10th, 2011Finally another gig right here in the Bay Area. It's been a while, but it was
a goody. Three great bands (us, Inner Ear Brigade and Cash Pony
and one cool new venue: Vitus, which used to be the Metro right there in
downtown Oakland. Easy gig too. Loaded in, hung with friends,
watched music, played music, watched more music, then went home.
We debuted not one but two new tunes tonight
("Dystopian Fiction" and "Welcome to the Solar Flares"). Good to get those
aired out, as we have other new tunes in the works...