October 24, 2007, posted by Crumbs.
Well, well, well, my beer breathed brethren, as Aaron Lewis would sing, "itsbeenawhi-ile". It has been waaaaaay too long since we had a diary. Kinda needed a break from it all. When the last Euro run ended, it was nice not having to do anything for 6 weeks in the summer except wakeboard and go camping. And to be honest, I had been running non-stop since last August recording and producing The Blackening, press tours, touring, having my 2nd son, more touring Feb thru July... it literally did not end for 11 months straight... straight through to July 8th, I had zero days off, and man, I just wanted to chill the fuck out. So when Adam's leg broke and all the Disney bullshit happened at the beginning of this last tour, I felt I needed to extend the break.
BUT... with batteries fully recharged, I now write to you from the land of the Rising Sun (that's Japan, my fellow barely-graduated-high-school-graduates), gearing up for the almighty Loudpark festival. Adam is back on his feet with us, and we're all really excited about this as it's the 1st time we have been to Japan since August 2001 when we supported Slayer right before Supercharger. Should be a blast. And then this runs in to Australia leg of The Black Crusade which is going to be HOLY-FUCKING- CRAPOLA-AMAZING!!! 1st Sydney show is sold out, next one is about to be, the rest are gonna be wildly nuts. Halloween in Melbourne we're trying to make extra cool, but a friend of mine said you Aussies don't really celebrate Halloween... and well... we don't give a fuck cause WE'RE gonna celebrate it there, so c'mon!!! Get dressed up in your stupidest/goriest costumes and get completely obliterated with Machine Head, Trivium and Arch Enemy... it'll be HELLA FUN!!!
UK/Euro leg of The Black Crusade starts right after that; can't believe we're playing 10,000 seaters... and they're gonna be packed, if not sold out. Wow. What a long way we've come.
I guess I'll catch you up with some highlights of the last 3 months, going backwards. The Black Tyranny tour with Arch Enemy, Throwdown, and Sanctity was... well... the best US headline/co-headline run we have ever done. Period. Biggest attendances, biggest merch, and just all-around best vibe of any US run we've ever done. The folks who came out were so fucking passionate and fired up, and gloriously drunk every night, it was purely exciting. It was really cool to squash the beef with Arch Enemy (who are such a fucking amazing band!! Christopher Amott is SICK!!)... it was cool to tour with a straight-edge band like Throwdown who were just so fucking cool, and such great dudes to be around, and SO fucking HEAVY... and the Sanctity brothers were just amazing, I can't say enough good things about them, great band, great guys, and Jared literally saved the fucking DAY filling in - and farting in - admirably for the missing Adam Duce. Trouble-Standin' Brandon (a nickname earned after a few too many Brown Eyes) from Bay Area metal maniacs the mighty Hostility did an amazing job filling in on bass, and brought a great vibe to the tour with his wide-eyed, everything-is-new enthusiasm. Thanks so much for the help dude!
Highlights of the tour included Pomona, which, especially in light of the Disney fiasco, ended up being sold out, pissed off and fucking insane...like Dee Snider says, "You can't stop rock-n-roll!!". Next up was the ridiculously obliterated after-party at Vinnie Paul's in Dallas... whoarg!!! Houston... was quite frankly...a fucking religious experience. Vibe was ELECTRIC, people climbing up on stage crying and shit, hugging me/us, saying how much MH meant to them, fuckin' sing-a-longs, fuckin' pits, fuckin' passion!!! Angela busted out her 1st (of several) "Let Freedom Ring's", it was an amazing show! The New Orleans "Machine-Fucking-Head-*STOMP*"... WOW!?... never EVER heard that one before... so fucking rad!... only you, NOLA, only you! Orlando ruled, Atlanta ruled, hanging with the Mastodons at their kickass bar was a great way to end the night too. Best Worcester show we've EVER played in our lives!! And it was cool talking with the promoter Scott Lee about the good ol' days of Pearl St. in Northampton, MA.
But New York... NEW YORK!!!??? Dudes and dudettes... HOLY - FUCKIN' - JESUS!!! Absolute fuckin' insanity, and when I say insanity, it needs to be all caps, like, INSANITY!!! Oh - my - God!?!? More Machine-Fucking-Head chants per minute than any other show in the world. Chug-a-lugs, Dimebag chants, DUCE chants, there wasn't a single person at any time standing still... pits on the floor, pits in the upper level, crowd surfing from the top level to the bottom, people swinging from the balconies... BEDLAM!!! Hands down the single biggest headline show we have done in America to date... sold out the friggin' Nokia Theatre in NYC... how 'bout it?!?! Philly was ridiculous and really fucking intense, kids there are hard as nails, and with Phil and I both suffering from a satanic flu virus, their ferocity gave us the fire to carry on... Toronto was absolutely, unequivocally ridiculous, as was friggin' Montreal... Canada totally kicks ass, eh! Chicago was another one of those moments of just utter awe... so fucking crazy, and winner of the sickest, most violent circle pit of the tour award!! Cleveland rocked with Markus 'O Hunterous of Greek Gods Chimaira-cous making a mighty showing on Davidian, but it was the day-off the night before in Cleveland that REALLY rocked. Went to the Cannibal Corpse show (who fucking killed, by the way!) with the Chimaira boys, got drunk and hung with them and Trevor the Black Dahlia singer (who turned me on to a killer band called Skeleton Witch) and his super cool girlfriend. After the Corpse we all went over to Municipal Waste at some tiny punk club and got B-L-O-T-T-O!!! Holy christ it was the best day off ever. We raged, those guys rule, we got CRUNK, and had a fucking blast!!! Grand Rapids rocked, St Louis fucking kicked HUMONGOUS amounts of ass, as did Denver as usual. Albuquerque was really good, and the number of hard ass chicks upfront banging and singing the words was astounding.
But my friends... San Francisco at The Warfield is simply the stuff legends are made of. It was Golden-era Bay Area shit. What a crazy ass show... fucking WILD!! Tyler the wheelchair kid who insisted on staying all the way upfront in the mayhem and toughed it out for 4 songs before we just HAD to pull him out and set him side stage, he fucking ruled!!! The sing-a-longs, P-Diddy's POWERSLIDE!! The balcony was rocking the fuck out!! And The Warfield staff treated all of us and our crew like fucking royalty. Got the "Al Capone" tour (dude?!), as Al Capone used to own The Warfield during the prohibiton era - read: alcohol-less (yikes!) - 1920's... got to see the illegal speakeasy he built downstairs that still stands to this day (as a storage room), it still has all the gold leaf on the walls with trippy paintings of naked women pouring martini's for baboons and shit. Got a look at where the (boarded up) underground tunnels that brought all the prohibition-era booze used to be, as well as the escape routes all the SF "high society" that frequented the speakeasy used to use. It was cool hearing all the old San Francisco gangster folklore / Barbary Coast-revival shit. And man just... the Warfield... it was huge for us, friggin' HUGE! It was fucking awesome in every sense of the word. Hanging/boozing with friends and all the fuckers from the enormo MH Frontliner convention that flew in from all over the US was awesome too. AND to top it off... we got to sign "The Wall", as in... Bill Graham's you-gotta-be-hella-extra-cool- invite-only-by-the-manager-of-the-office-to-sign-the-wall "wall". Dude!!?
Machine Head own the Bay Area. Amazing...
And last but definitely not least, we can't forget LA, if not for the sheer chaos that it was onstage. The sold-out crowd was retardedly retarded in the very best sense of the word. Biggest LA show to date, and they (and us) were gloriously wasted and so ready to be loud and just nuts. Stage-diving mania by everyone in Throwdown and Sanctity, Scott Ian jammed Davidian with us on my guitar, Brandon from Bleeding Through sang the 2nd verse, Angela sang the end, like, 50 people sang the chorus, and just a sick energy from the crowd that night. And I'm not blowin' shit out of proportion.
All in all a really successful run for us, only had 2 real duds on the tour: San Diego, CA and Norfolk, VA. And San Diego was so especially wack, that they are officially fired forever... FIRED!!
The last leg of the Euro run preceded all of the above insanity... Metal Town in Gothenburg Sweden was sick as fuck, and hanging out with so many friends on the side of the stage watching Slayer (who ruled that night!), in a country 5,000 miles away from home was really just fuckin' rad. Roskilde killed... duh! *cough* Supporting Korn in eastern-Europe-some-where-or-other and getting a shout from Jonathan Davis was killer; weird, but really cool. Weird 'cause after years of seeing him not really talk live, hearing him talk onstage let alone give a shout out to, uh... me, for... well... helping break them in Europe... it was... cool. Cool isn't even the right word, the respect was awesome.
But man, after that was The Show. Metallica at Wembley Stadium. Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuude!? DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUDE!?!?!? Such an honor. Handpicked. Last minute. To be honest, we thought it might be a bit rough just because we were thrown on so late in the game, our fans might not know about it in time, etc. But oh my god dude. Let me preface this and start by saying that, straight up, the first 3 songs were literally the sloppiest we'd played on the entire Blackening run. Jesus?! Guitar cutting out, broken strings, tech hands me my guitar wildly out of tune, Phil's wireless goes out... it was like, NOW?! Were gonna have all these problems NOW??!! Christ al-fuckin'-mighty! But you know what...it didn't matter, the crowd went friggin' APESHIT! The circle pit for Imperium (which Monte Conner says is the new Davidian) was... just... oh my fuckin' GOD! We FINALLY pulled it together for Halo and Davidian, and from Halo on...the world just fell into place...everything got easy. Didn't know it at the time but Hetfield watched us... from Halo on... whew! Check out that Imperium pit here.
Mastodon ruled, as always. But Metallica, man, Metallica... dude... untouchable that night. I've seen a couple bad shows from them recently, but man, they walked on fucking water that night. What a vibe. Setlist: Impeccable. Between-song banter: Hysterical. The crowd sing-a-long to the "la-da-da-da" part, from the lone post-Black-album song they played (Memory Remains)... it went on for 2 minutes after the song ended... goose bumps man... fucking... goose bumps. Hetfield hung in the dressing room, told us he's rockin' to The Blackening, "there's some epic shit on there"... my brain pretty much imploded at that point... smoke out of the ears and everything... full-on frizzle fry.
The afterparty was drunken insanity, I gave and received no less than 17 skull bites to Brent from Mastodon, but the highlight of it all, was hanging out with Lars after the afterparty, drinking a small ocean's worth of booze and picking his brain about every detail of the thrash era that I thought I knew about or wanted to know about. With Adam, and a small pow-wow of people, him and I held court for nearly an hour talking about everything from the years he followed Diamond Head around (he was in the rehearsal studio with them when they wrote Am I Evil), following Motorhead around, Dave Mustaine, Napster, Exodus, Baloff, Cliff, what their mindset was when writing MOP, who were their rivals at the time, the first time I saw them, what they thought of Slayer back then... dudes, I was in full-on Metallica history nerd/geek mode, and it RULED 'cause he was spilling all the dirt. We raged on over to some fancy-schmancy hotel his friends were at, where, in between skull bites, WWE wrestling sessions and all of us flashing all of our penises at cars passing by, we talked the pros and cons of cocaine, while he fawned hopelessly over our publicity girl... it was c-r-a-z-y!
What a night!!!!!!!
Stumbled back to the hotel at 6AM, was on a plane by 11AM, and 12 hours later, I was changing diapers with my 2 kids who couldn't really give 2 shits about what I just did. I wasn't Robb Flynn of Machine Head anymore, I was just Dada, and Dada needed to "change my poopy pants", and "take out the garbage", and "go to the store 'cause we're out of formula"... and so on, and so on, and so on.
Life has a way checking you. Yesterday I was supporting Metallica, today I'm changing a record 5 (five!) poopy diapers in 1 day.
And you know what... I like it like that.
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