California Music Adventure 2
We fucking love Redding, because Redding knows how to party! There were literally 30 people wearing Athiarchists shirts at the show and our friends were lining up at the merch booth to support us. The show was out of control and fucking amazing as it always is there, I had about 5 shots of fireball whiskey and was fairly trashed by the end of our set. I didn’t last long at Johnny Rock’s afterparty, as soon as I walked in the door some dumb drunk bitch started talking a bunch of shit to me because Matt pushed me over the couch, so I threw my handful of Frito’s in her face, I said “HOWS IT FEEL BITCH….HOWS IT FEEL….HOWS IT FEEL”, I then told her that it takes a lot for me to throw my Frito’s at someone, because I really fucking love Frito’s, as I exited right out the door I had just walked into, passing out 2 minutes later in the mobile stage.
I woke up the next morning to Dano and Bekka sitting on the couch looking pretty relaxed. Apparently they ate Johnny Rock’s weed brownies, and they were pretty potent. Bekka was sitting upright on the couch staring at the TV, half way passed out as I asked her “you ready to drive in about an hour?” She goes “OH SHIT!” And then I told her that it wasn’t really a drive by show today, we were going to just park in front of the skate park and rage it.
People in Red Bluff were stoked and ready as soon as we pulled up, the door was open in under 15 seconds and we were raging it! About 6 songs in I look to stage right and there is a police officer standing there. I quickly stop playing, get Dano’s attention and he stops, then there is about 5 seconds where we both stood there in complete silence staring at the officer, I then turn around and hit the close button on the door and it is like we were never playing a show. I crawl out the back to see the officer has woken Bekka up from the marijuana coma she was in in the passenger seat.
Before the officer could even look at me I yelled “I’m the one you want to talk to, it’s in my name, yes we were playing a show, and yes were done.” The officer was really nice and she let us hang out and talk to everyone before heading south to Modesto. We pulled into our good friend Brent’s(from Better Left Unsaid) driveway and hung out for the next day. The mobile stage had a bunch of loose ends so it was good to have a day to work on it and fix shit up. The next night we went down to Spinnaker Lounge in Modesto and raged it outside in the parking lot between all the bands. It was pretty damn cool, everyone was really stoked on it, and the police never showed up. I think we played 4 or 5 sets out there, then headed back to Brent’s house.
As we reached the residential area, a Stanislaus County Sheriff pulled right on our 6 and stayed there until we pulled into Brent’s driveway. I immediately got out and was kind of pissed off. Was he worried that a fucking mobile stage with a fancy looking wrap complete with a band name on it was going to break into someones house? He pulls up beside me and just wants to talk. It didn’t take him long to realize I was sober and not even stoned at all…Then Dano walked up.
Turns out Dano is friends with the motherfucker. Says he met the officer when he pulled over his friend the other night on one of his late night missions to party. Then he just wanted to sit there and talk, which is cool with me, whatever, I am always stoked when police are nice to us, but at 3AM in a residential neighborhood after scaring the fuck out of me(because you never know what the police are going to do to you) is not my idea of a good time. We were talking about everything from smoking weed to the Lakers game, I am truly convinced we could have handed him a joint and he would have smoked it. After 30 minutes of this the officer goes to leave, then starts up another 15 minute conversation about how Oregon grows a lot of good weed. You know those kind of people that just want a……friend? The kind of people that won’t end a conversation until you physically walk away. That was this guy, and honestly, it has already shown what goes around comes around, because since we were nice to that officer, and had a nice self esteem raising conversation with him, all the police we run into are in very good moods!!
Southbound and down to Bakersfield we go the next afternoon. To play a house party that some new friends of ours set up. The only other time we have played Bakersfield was for the Rockstar Uproar Festival last September at Rabbobank Arena. I hope everyone understands by now that we will literally fucking play ANYWHERE. A huge stadium parking lot full of thousands of people, to a house party in a garage that holds about 30 people, doesn’t fucking matter, never fucking has.
Everyone was pretty stoked at the house party when we rolled up in a fucking mobile stage. I just love pulling up to places with it, or even driving through town, people know what is up! I had a couple Narural Ice”s and a hot link….stupid idea for someone that had an ulcer a year ago, I don’t know what the fuck I was thinking. By the time we were loading in to rage, people were pretty slammed. Our friend Alan that set up the show for us was getting pissed on because he passed out with his shoes on….Don’t fuck around in Bakersfield!
We raged our asses off for about 5 songs, then waving hands and people yelling to stop….the cops are here. Why oh why oh why do asshole neighbors have to call and complain, I mean really, we were in the hood, who the fuck cares? Our friends Cuntry Control from Bremerton played after us, after the cops left, which felt good that they still got to play, because the last house party we did, the band after us didn’t get to play because of police. We passed out on the side of the road and headed towards Phoenix the next morning, I really need to install a urinal in the mobile stage, it just doesn’t make sense to piss in a home depot bag inside of a 5 gallon bucket, and pissing in gallon jugs looks too much like apple juice.
We stopped by our friend Elia Popov’s manufacturing shop the next morning in Valencia, JFM Manufacturing. They are the bad asses that cut out that sweet looking Athiarchists sign that is hanging above the drums. We gave them the tour of the new mobile stage, and they are going to make us a sweet custom cut front grill for the front of the stage. They really specialize in pyrotechnics, as we look over and see a fuckload of pyro equipment with “METALLICA” written on the side of it. Who knows, maybe one day, you will see some pyro on the mobile stage…..hmmmmmm
Onward to Phoenix, AZ as we have a show there the next night at The Big Fish Pub. The drive wasn’t too bad, not very much wind through the Palm Desert. Some traffic around Indio because Coachella was going on, we didn’t even try to pull into there because we are planning on doing the Big 4 show at the same place this weekend, and didn’t want to be shut down and not able to do it again.
It was awesome rolling into Big Fish Pub and seeing the looks on everyones faces. Everyone kept referring to it as a tour bus. It is so amazing how much nicer the other bands are when you roll up in a mobile stage that looks that legit, compared to rolling up in our 2000 white ford econoline with a missing window. Phoenix always surprises me, it is honestly the only music scene in the world where all the bands sound really tight and good, but literally make their fans wait outside until the band before them finishes, then pack all their shit up and bounce before the next band even starts, taking their crowd with them. Like the promoter is going to see that they brought 33 people and the band after them only brought 25. No shit, I watched a band set up their merch for 45 minutes, then pack it up and leave not selling anything. People need to realize that if everyone had all their fans stay there, the bar would be a lot happier, and the music scene would be way stronger. Our good friend Marshall Fucking Beck set up the show for us, and made a sweet radio ad for it with No Call/No Show playing in the background, so we were stoked.
After the show we headed southeast on I-10 to a truckstop for the night. We needed to be in Tucson the next day and it was only a couple hours away. Woke up to about 100 degree heat…wow Arizona. It was about an hour to Tucson where we were playing at Tucson Raceway Park under the Metal Mulisha ramp. We were early, like we always are, and had about 5 hours to kill, so we fired up the 4000 watt generator and sat there in climate controlled comfort.
Went in to the pits when people started showing up and found out we were going to rage a 20 minute set under the ramp in front of all the cars doing autograph signings, then after the race at 10:30 in the snack bar area. A lot of families were there with young kids so we edited the earlier show and kept it kind of mellow, at least as far as the vocals were concerned. The later show we let the fur fly and people were stoked! 5 year old kids were telling their parents that they think they like heavy metal music. This is also after people were coming up to us with this awesome picture of us with the logo on it and everything, that the track photographer took and printed up 100 copies to give people for free, for us to sign, it was awesome!
Back to Phoenix after eating a bunch of racetrack food, then off to Los Angeles the next morning. Today is the day our episode airs on MTV and we were kind of planning on raging some shows around town, but then we realized that if we raged it around town, we would miss the episode. So we went to Shanes and celebrated the episode being on by watching it a couple times and smoking copious amounts of marijuana with our friends from Redding that came down.
The next day our friends Winds of Plague were having a CD release show at The Key Club, so we thought that would be a perfect place to rage it. We stopped by One11 Ink on the way down to show them that the sweet wrap they put on the van was still looking good, even though it is dirty as fuck and we are afraid to wash it because every time we wash our vehicle, it breaks down. Our friend Rob at One11 called his band mate that is the stage manager at The Key Club and got us on the list, party.
This is the day we decided that it is pointless for us to pull up in front of a venue and park, you have to constantly feed two meters and hope to find a 2 hour parking spot, plus security starts getting sketchy sometimes. We need to just rally into town, rage the show when we arrive, and drive away still raging the show. Here is why it sucks getting there early.
We parked around the corner and walked up to The Key Club. People were talking to us about seeing us on MTV and taking their pictures with us, asking us where the mobile stage is. Just then 2 parking spots opened up right in front of The Key Club. Dano Grabbed the cones, Bekka stood in the empty space, and I drove around the block. As soon as I parked and went to pay the meter, head of Key Club security asked me “WHAT ARE YOUR INTENTIONS”…I said….”what?” He said “WHAT ARE YOUR INTENTIONS!!!”….I said….”WHAT?”…..he said “I know this thing plays music, what are your intentions”….I said…”I know this thing plays music too, but we are here to watch the show right now”….He said “I don’t think that would be a very good idea” as he turns around and is all nice to this half naked drunk chick…I don’t blame him. I guess to be that guys friend you have to have a pair of tits and/or not show up in a mobile stage. There is still a certain amount of respect I gave him for just doing his job, but there is no need to be a prick to me, especially since last time we were in front of The Key Club the manager was totally stoked on what we were doing and even asked us why we never have played inside, I obviously said “because we are from Oregon and refuse to sell $500 in tickets.”
As soon as the stage was parked in front everyone starts saying “THE BLEEDING FROGS ARE HERE!!” People were taking pictures of themselves standing in front of the stage….It was a truly epic moment. We let everyone know that The Bleeding frogs actually weren’t here tonight, and that because security were being dicks, we were going to circle around and play The Rainbow instead, because they actually appreciate it when a band parks up front and plays. Plus we knew Vince Neil was at The Rainbow, and after reading “The Dirt” we had no problem with raging a show for the greatest pimp daddy extrordinaire of all time!
About an hour after the WOP show got out, and everyone was all drunk partying at either The Key Club afterparty or The Rainbow, Bekka looped us around the block and we raged it down Sunset! Stopped in front of The Rainbow for a song and a half, then rolled out of there, still playing, right by the front of The Key Club as I see the head security guard standing out front, I tell him some shit over the microphone about how we respect them and we actually didn’t play in front. I saw a smile on his face, he was just doing his job, there was a smile on my face too, but that was because I was breaking the law.
This was by far the best Rainbow drive by we have done. The place was fucking packed, saw a lot of our friends right up front, and people were literally running from all directions to take pictures and see it. Normally we would have played like 4 songs and waited for the cops to chase us out, but we do things a little differently now…We keep them hungry, and we try to stay out of trouble. Not only is leaving after a song or two better as far as the police are concerned, it raises more uncertainty on to just when The Athiarchists will show up and rage it…adding to the mystery of the mobile stage.
Little did we know what was waiting for us the next day….The absolute hands down greatest mobile show ever.
I always get nervous when people tell us we are fucking stupid, crazy, and are going to get arrested. But nothing could have prepared me for what was going to happen this day. We are going to play down Figueroa Ave in downtown Los Angeles, in front of The Golden God Awards at Club Nokia, followed by the Lakers playoff game at Staples Center a block up the road. No fucking around today, no parking, no feeding meters, no dealing with pricks on a power trip, just straight letting the fur fly all over the place.
We were smashing down 110 south a couple miles from the exit when Bekka yells back “OLYMPIC IS CLOSED!!”…FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK, now time to re route, and anyone that has tried to use a cel phone/google maps in downtown LA knows that they don’t work at all, because there is no bandwidth. After exiting on 4th avenue we then realized that Figueroa is a fucking one way street, going the wrong way! At this point I wasn’t even sure if you could drive down Figueroa facing the right direction, what are we going to do, rage a show driving the opposite way, playing for the buildings across the street, and let the sound reflect back? FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK, turn left here, turn right here, no fuck I fucked up, turn right again, turn right, turn right, alright now go down to Olympic and take a right, then a left on Figueroa, Figueroa is still a one way going the wrong way, wait I see a turn lane, but it still looks like a one way…no its a two way now, YES YES, FUCK YES WE MADE IT, were still 15 minutes early but fuck it, there are police everywhere, lets rage it!
We opened the door to a cop car, police everywhere, almost blew out William Shatner’s ear drums as he exited a limo. Behind that was a sea of people waiting to get in, in front of that were a bunch of officers taking pictures of us with their camera phones…people were fucking STOKED!! Without even batting an eye we switched from the middle of No Call/No show to Go Lakers Go as soon as we could see Staples Center, where there were even more people waiting to get into there. After that we raged it up the 110N, to the I-5 North, all the way to Valencia where a CHP politely told us over his PA “hey you in the truck, could you please stop playing music on the freeway, I don’t particularly care at all, but someone called and complained” Thus being the coolest thing a police officer has ever done for us, thank you LAPD and CHP, you guys are alright! I’m not going to let the bad apples ruin it for the good ones anymore!
So whats next for us? Hanging out for a day or two getting caught up on videos and blogs, then heading down to Indio, CA for The Big 4 Show at Empire Polo Club, and do we have permission to do this? No…at least not yet, but we have a good friend of ours working on it for us, and are crossing our fingers that everything goes well, if we are kicked out, we will at least play on our way out of the parking lot, and the freeway all the way back to Los Angeles!
Other than that we have nothing else planned, just going to go where the wind takes us, well be in Los Angeles until May 1st then we will be up in Seattle right after California Music Adventure from May 7th to the 13th, then will be back in Oregon preparing for Mayhem this summer.
What we have realized more than anything right now is that we can play for any crowd at any show anywhere and people would be stoked. I am fully convinced we could roll up on a Justin Beiber Show and people would be stoked. We have always mixed our music up with literally any kind of music that wants to play with us. We just love to play music, and we love to play music to people that appreciate what we do, which we can accomplish now with the push of a button and a 10 minute drive. Never seeking money, never seeking fame, always remaining true to ourselves while making our own creativity, and at the same time without even trying, making our own luck.