Leipzig, Hohenstein-Ernsthal, and finally home

After waking up in Dresden and eating a very casual breakfast with our brave promoter, Bjorn, and some other Conni-ites, we set a leisurely pace for Leipzig. You see, tour was almost over and we were in no hurry to go anywhere fast. Germany welcomed us back by raining a bunch, but that did not stop us from going for a refreshing swim in the Markkleeberger See. There were some naked shenanigans, but they were quickly silenced by Robert's food rage. In order to calm him we headed for Zoro, a squat that happens to have a super-nice vegan restaurant. Now, I lack the kind of epicurean feelings for food that many punks have, but the restaurant, Zest, served some truly incredible stuff. We ate, all in all, far too much, but what the hell; tour.

Finally we strolled over to the venue, located in another sizable squat. There we ate even more incredible food, loaded in, and hung out. 200 people ended up coming out to see Ghostlimb and Black Kites including our old pals from Zann. I thought the show was fantastic and had fun hanging out. Shout outs to my Zann dudes, the cooks, and Leo.

The next morning we headed back to the Markkleeberger See where things were decidedly more sexy than the day before. Europe is weird like that some times. Then we ate at Zest, again. It was great, again. Then we headed to our last show on the top of some mountain in the middle of nowhere. It felt distinctly like an Ohio Agricultural Fair. But we played and had fun and then tour was over. Then we barely went to bed and spent a bunch of time in planes, etc... But that's unimportant.

Tour was incredible. Thanks to all the friends we had before that helped us and all the friends we made who helped us. Y'all were too fucking kind. We love you. Let's hang out again!


Laval, Toulose, Marseille, Ljubljana, Prague, Dresden

So there is often no easily accessible wifi over here or time in which to use it; hence the lack of frequent updates. Post-Ieper we drove to Laval in France where we met up with new friends, Birds in Row, a band you will no doubt be hearing about in the next six months or so. We played in a basement(!) on a floor(!) and it felt good. Stayed with Birds' front-dude Bart at his parents' pad. The next day was a hefty 8 hour drive through the toll-happy French countryside to Toulose. It was fairly brutal, but we were happy to be greeted at the venue with delicious food and friendly French folks out for a show. Shout-out to Pablo, who shares a mutual friend with me in Sergio del Grosso from the Bronx, NY. That night we slept in another parent-pad and enjoyed the company of some French tough-guy enthusiasts. Check out their band ARKAUS if you're into that kind of thing.

The next morning began an odyssey across southern Europe: we awoke in Toulose, drove to the French Riviera where we swam in the Mediterranean at Narbonne, then hopped in the van, drove to Marseilles where we played a basement once used by the French Resistance in WWII (there was still radio equipment mounted into the wall), then we got right in the van and drove straight through to Venezia where we got our tourist on pretty hard, then back into the van to Koper, Slovenia where we swam in the wonderful Adriatic, and then, finally, into the van for a final time for a drive to Ljubljana where we played a cool squat and finally, finally got to sleep. Shout outs to my boys Lukow and Rog (maybe Rok?) and Sanja for being super accomodating and making great dinner.

The next day we awoke feeling well rested and drove through absolutely stunning surroundings to Prague where we played a really cool show and hung out pretty hard. Prague is, in fact, as beautiful as everyone says it is. Despite the group getting separated in a peak tourist location, we did manage to find one another and return, once again, to the van.

Yesterday it was a quick drive from Prague to Dresden with a short interruption by the German Border Police, but we told them to fuck off and they did. Well, not exactly, but we did escape unscathed. We were supposed to play AZ Conni, another squat, but their summer construction is not yet finished and so our brave promoter, Born, moved the show to a practice studio across town. Luckily it effected the draw not one iota and we played perhaps my favorite show of tour.

Now I head to breakfast to eat something and prepare for Leipzig tonight, Hohenstein-Ernsthal tomorrow, and then home the day after that...


Nurnberg, Darmstadt, Muhlheim, Ieper

So it's been awhile since we had reliable access to internet AND time in which to write an update; apologies. The past few days have been pretty excellent and we're stoked to be hanging in Europe. Nurnberg show was in a massive old building that was part of the medieval city wall. Thanks very much to our new friend Verina for putting us up in her apartment and letting us hang hard.

Darmstadt was in a massive old mansion that was donated to the punx by a generous old lady, or so the story went. We finally got to play on a floor again and shredded hard. Copious amounts of food was made available to us which we were grateful for.

Muhlheim was in an AZ (autonomous zone aka squat) and was awesome. The space was cool and the food was incredible! The chef (who's name I forgot) even gave us a bunch of Apfelkuchen to take on the road. I love tour. That night found us back at Rik's in Antwerp. Love that guy.

Tonight was Ieper. We played on a big stage in front of a ton of people. Other cool bands like Touche Amore and Soul Control played as well. Many heavy hangs were had, new friends made, Jeff pitted to Sheer Terror and Strife (who were awesome, by the way).

It kind of goes without saying that we're having the time of our lives here and don't want to stop. Europe, on the whole, has been super supportive and generous to us. It does make the US seem amateurish in a lot of ways... not to be too critical of my home, but there's something incredibly refreshing about spending time in a place where people aren't entirely burnt out and jaded. No need to dwell, life is good.


Karlsrühe, Deutschland

First of all, shout outs to two Germans who we gave the blog address to last night. Sorry we forgot your names! Enjoy the tunes!

So anyway last night was a bigger show with The Carrier and All Teeth from the US. It was definitely not our typical show, but we still had a lot of fun. Lukas made some excellent vegan schnitzel that we ate all of. I think that the audience enjoyed Jeff's onstage humor and I was told that my onstage German isn't too bad. All in all a good time. Thanks to Marco and Max for putting us up and making Frühstuck for us.

In Nürnberg now, Jeff and I hard-styled on Hitler's podium. You know, the one from Triumph of the Will? Pictures later.



Aachen, Deutschland

Last night we played in an old air-raid shelter in the middle of Aachen that has been transformed by the punx into an "Autonomous Zone", aka a punk venue/hang-out center. Our friend Mark from Trainwreck (best band) booked the show and did a great job taking care of us. We were fortunate enough to play with Millions of Them again.

Other friends who we met in Nijmegen traveled down to Aachen to hang out and see the show which I thought was pretty cool. Shout outs to Jake and Curtis and Sasha and Jurven.

Tour moves smoothly forward and we are all still having the time of our lives. Every show has been rewarding in one way or another and we've met many, many friendly, supportive people.


More days

So, we also went to the UK which was pretty exciting. We had to take a ferry over the English channel to get there and pretend we didn't now each other (fuck the border). I got to see the famed cliffs of Dover which were, indeed, white and tall. We drove to Brighton and I got to see my good pals Marcos, Rosie, and Eli. We played in the upstairs stage room of a pub and the show was great. Many thanks to promoter Jay for putting it together.

The next day we drove north to Manchester which, frankly, reminded me a bit of Manchester, New Hampshire... still, the show was cool and many thanks to Thom for putting it together. We stayed in a cool punk house with people from all over the UK and the world. I had fun talking philosophy and life with Eli and a British version of Derek Ludovici. We also learned a lot about Finnish life from some ladies who also happened to be crashing there. Finland sounds pretty EFFING cool.

London was the next day and was our best show in the UK; lots of people came out and we played pretty darn well. We saw the sights of London "Japanese style" as Robert says (jump out of the van, take picture, jump back in van). Then we stayed up way too late while Jeff showed videos of himself wrestling to some Brits. Their commentary was hilarious.

The next day we were off to the Channel tunnel where we drove onto a train, took the train under the channel, and then drove off in France. All in all it took 30 minutes; pretty darn impressive. We headed over to Antwerp in Belgium where we met up with our pal Rik who booked us a cool gig. Played with Millions of Them (Rik's band) and then stayed in his BALLER apartment. Seriously, it was beautiful. Today we walked around Antwerp which is a beautiful city with Rik, Hans, and Elise and took in the sights. It was our first really touristy day of tour. I am posting to this now from an old bomb shelter in Aachen, Germany where we will play tonight. Life is cool right now.



Okay, we haven't had too much time to be updating blog entries, apologies everyone. Nijmegen was totally awesome. If you're ever in then area, stop by the Onderboek and hang out with my dude Jurven and my girl Abril and some other cool folks. They made excellent lentils for us and put us up in their awesome squat. Holland is a beautiful country.

More later, suckers.


Day 3 - Hamburg

We awoke in Berlin for a third or maybe fourth time; it was beginning to be hard to tell. After a quick Brotchen run, we went to see the Wall which is a mere three blocks from Robert's store. The wall seems pretty emasculated in 2011. It's hard to put oneself in that point in history and feel what Germans felt back then. Then we walked around for a bit, marveling at all the dogs running around off-leash; very cool. Black Kites rode the S-Bahn into Alexanderplatz and walked around a bit. I believe a picture of Tom holding Karl Marx's hand was taken. It's posted above. Anyway, after all this touristy schnick-schnack we jumped in the van and hit the autobahn which was choked with traffic. The German countryside looks like Ohio/Indiana and Vermont/New Hampshire blended together. The best of what America has to offer!

Eventually we rolled into Hamburg and up to the squat we performed in; Rote Flora. Now I've played some punk-ass muddafuckin' places in my days, but never as punk as this. I think I took a picture or two, I'll show y'all later. You can google that if you want, it's crazy. It's also funny that it's in the middle of a neighborhood that's experienced extreme gentrification, so you have all these swank cafes surrounding a massive, crumbling, graffiti-covered, punk squat.

We played with American friends 1994 and Algernon Cadwallader which was neat. The show was fun and I think we felt pretty darn good about the performance. Then we slept in a beautiful apartment in the red-light district.

Nijmegen today; it'll be Operation Market Garden all over again.