Qui are currently on a two month European tour – covering Italy, Croatia, Slovenia, Romania, Hungary, Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Netherlands, UK and Belgium. It’s the band’s longest tour to date, and they’ve partnered with us at New Noise Magazine to give you a look inside their European journey.
It is 8:30pm, Thurs, March 31. I am at the Godot Bistro in Avellino, IT. We have been in Italy for one week.
We left Los Angeles one week ago, arriving late the following evening in Verona. Having had disastrously rotten luck on our last two flying excursions, we booked our flights a day early to allow the airline sufficient time to find what I assumed would be our inevitably lost luggage. However, when we landed in Milan, by way of Moscow, we were miraculously reunited with all of our checked bags, guitars, keyboard, etc. As I write this now, I can only scarcely believe it. In fact, aside from the guy next to me who farted in his sleep throughout the entire 12 hour flight, the trip was relatively painless. We were seated in the exit row on both flights so we had ample leg room and mobility to move about the cabin. Our tour manager, Carlos, picked us up in Milan and drove us two hours to his home in Verona.
We slept in late the following day, and spun our wheels well into the evening. I never actually got dressed the entire day, lounging around in my pajamas. Carlos’ dear mother baked two cakes for us and we went to town on them with great fervor. Having the extra day to adjust to the time change and get our bearings was quite a luxury, one that I will try to plan into all itineraries henceforth.
So far, the shows, the travel and the company have been a delight. Our first four shows were smashing successes from top to bottom, with large and enthusiastic crowds. We played a club in a large country house in Recanati, a converted porno theater in Foligno, an anarchist squat in Terni and a small bar in Pescara. They were all seemingly unlikely places for a band like us but each night was fabulous. It’s been so fun to play in these farflung spots. At each turn we have been treated with the utmost graciousness by everyone we have encountered and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
Last night in Frattamaggiore was a dud, as is bound to happen from time to time. About thirty people were there, but the club was gigantic and had separate rooms throughout. I think we actually performed for 5 or 6 people. So it goes, we had fun playing nonetheless.
Today en route to Avellino, Carlos took us to Pompeii where we spent an hour walking around the ruins. It was pretty cool, though I am kind of embarrassed to admit that my primary interest in seeing the place had more to do with Pink Floyd than ancient history. Paul and I both alternately had, “Echoes,” and, “Astronomy Domine,” stuck in our heads the entire time. Still, it is truly incredible that we get to do things like this. When I stop and think of all the places we’ve been, things we’ve seen, heroes we’ve worked with, and everything we have coming up this year and beyond, it’s hard to believe my good fortune. Good thing I didn’t listen to all those teachers when I was a kid!
We are due to play in an hour. The venue tonight is very small and beautifully decorated. It could just as easily be a yoga studio or art gallery. The promoter told me that Shellac played here a few years ago, which must have been quite a night. I saw Shellac last year in a soldout 1500 seat theater. This place holds maybe 50. I wish I could have seen that. We were also told that they just recently began getting noise complaints from the neighbors. Our host asked if we could please play a bit quietly tonight to avoid trouble with the cops. I was totally game to play our entire set at a whisper, but we did a soundcheck and ended up not really having to turn down much at all. Still, just for fun we are doing some very quiet versions of loud songs and the like. We’re both into doing shit like that.
One week down and all is well. I love touring.