Today was the day when I realized how spoiled actually are on this tour! Before the tour we received a lot of warnings and concerns about how exhausting the life on tour is. We were told that we were to expect low standard all over the place. We were warned about shitty backstage’s, lack of descent food, little or no access of clean water, tour busses with similarities to coffins, disrespectful headliners, no proper sleep, horrible venues etc.
Well, let me summarize a typical day on this tour:
You wake up in a new city after many hours of good sleep in the tour bus (after a couple of nights you manage to sleep properly in the beds while the bus is moving). After getting dressed, it’s time to load in the equipment at the venue. Entering a new venue is always exciting, especially when the stages / concert halls are as nice as they are on this tour! After load-in we most we’re most often getting served proper breakfast by the kitchen at the venue. After breakfast you have some hours to see the city in which you are playing before sound-check. Although we’re one of the support bands, we get to do a thorough sound-check before every show. Luckily we’re allowed to use Therions digital mixer on every concert, which makes it possible to restore the settings from the previous show. This makes the sound-check way faster than it would have been with an analogue mixer. When the sound check is done, we often hang out on a really nice backstage - fully loaded with food, candy, fruits and drinks. The main act Therion (and their crew) always treats us with kindness and respect, and everything is always handled very professional. In fact, you can always count on everything being in order at any time. Before we enter the stage we usually get a really nice meal - even the vegetarians! On every concert we’re granted a fifteen minutes change-over between the opening act Lock Vostok (great band), which we usually manage to do in five minutes. Then finally - it’s time for the concert! Usually we get to play for huge crowds (at least huge compared to what we’re used to), and most often we get overwhelming feedback from the crowd!
As you can see - the tour (luckily) doesn’t live up to the predictions at all! We´re really enjoying every second of this tour!
This day was no exception! We arrived in Lille in France about 2 pm, and did the load-in shortly after. The catering at Aeroneuf (the venue) might have been the best I’ve ever witnessed in a Leprous setting. Both for breakfast and dinner we were served the most delicate food I’ve tasted in a long time. This was french food at it’s best, and we had unlimited access to it! As soon as I found the time for it, I walked to the city center of Lille. I really don’t regret that! Lille is one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever been to. A positive surprise is that the frenchmen has finally started to improve their English skills a bit, so it was easier to communicate with the locals then I remembered it to be. I wish that I had brought either the proper Leprous video camera or an SLR photo camera, but since the iPhone was my only alternative I had to do the documentation of the city with that.
Back at the venue I found TorO experimenting with the juice machine (which is an activity we all find very appealing), and I also got the chance to see the it from above - which I found rather scary.
Finally I got the chance to wash my clothes for the first time on the tour. I started off with handwashing (which was quite complicated in the small wash), but after a while I found out that there was actually a washing machine available near the backstage! What a venue!!
Todays concert was OK, but not of our best. Tobias had a lot of trouble with his bass drum pedal, which made it a bit difficult to focus 100% on the concert. However, we received great feedback from french crowd and it was after all a really good experience.
Lille - We will come back!!
Kind Regards, Einar