Bob Husak, renowned drummer of Light In The Attic’s famed signees The Blakes, wanted us to inform you that this blog was written in the time between The Blake’s Denver and Spokane shows. He also wanted us to inform you that a “thrilling conclusion” to this Dickensian saga was forthcoming.Thank you Bob. Always a gentlemen.
The next day, after checking out of the hotel, stopping at a bank and battling Denver rush hour traffic, we made our way to the Larimer Lounge and did a sound check. We’d played the Larimer before and it was much the same as last time we were through. They have a carpet that’s so caked with filth, at first glance it looks like a concrete floor. Free High Life was provided, as well as some barbeque they give out to customers on Thursdays. The first band was the headliner from the day before, the Nicotine Fits, who put on a high-energy rock show and who I believe have a lot of potential. Local band The Knew played second with some high-powered Johnny Cash-like numbers. Very solid stuff. A few KEXP listeners turned up and we played a fun, somewhat short set for them. This hopelessly inebriated maniac kept harassing the fans, the band and B. Brown, stating that he was a journalist who just wanted a story. It seemed like he really only wanted to talk endlessly and incoherently. We eventually had to tear ourselves away from some girls and begin the treacherous journey to Salt Lake City, where we’d be doing an interview the next day in the afternoon before the show. B. Brown took the helm and we drove straight into a snow storm. It got so bad that we had to pull over in the mountains and wait out before crossing into Wyoming.
After fitful sleep, Garnet took the wheel in the early morning and drove slowly toward our destination. So it went for the remainder of the day, as the roads were frozen over all the way into Salt Lake; the van even threatened to careen out of control a few times. When we finally reached SLC and located the office building we’d been told to find, we piled out gratefully. We were doing a video interview for a company that works with bands on behalf of Mountain Dew, who are always looking for ways to get kids to associate positive life experiences with their brand, and therefore they have a vested interest in promoting rock music. So we were put on a couch in the middle of a huge empty room, handed a few Miller Lites and were prompted to babble into a video camera for a half hour or so. Supposedly, the footage will be edited together with our music video along with some live shots, and the final product will be available through Comcast On Demand. Actually, the crew working with us were very cool, particularly the guy running the show, Mark, who kept things moving along smoothly and who bought us a twelve pack of Steel Reserve following the interview. That swill will kill you if you’re not careful. We rolled over to Burt’s Tiki Lounge (no relation to the Albuquerque venue), played some pool and loaded in. Burt’s is a glorified dive bar, but it isn’t without its charm. Mark showed up and had us trudge several blocks through the snow to an Indian restaurant where he treated us to dinner. Excellent food. By the time we returned to the venue, the first band was finished and the second was in the middle of its set. Although as always we had a few dedicated fans in the audience, the place was relatively dead when we played; considering the weather, we were grateful anyone was there at all. Mark heckled us from the bar in a jocular fashion throughout our set, but I didn’t know it was him at first and I got a little angry when he started ripping on Seattle. Anyway, Mark took us back to his house in the suburbs after the show and we went to sleep immediately.
The next morning we started on the drive to Boise. We thought it was going to be as perilous an undertaking as the previous day’s journey, but the roads were entirely clear. We found an SLC radio station that played classic country and we were able to listen to it for hundreds of miles. When we reached Boise we checked into a hotel and attempted to find out which bars were screening the Mayweather-Hatton fight. It had been impossible for us to escape the promotional reality show based on the buildup to the match, since every hotel in the country provided the TV channel that played it nonstop. So we got sucked into the story, and we wanted the payoff. No dice. Not one bar in town was showing it, not even Hooters. But it was just as well; we had shows to play. Our first stop was the Record Exchange, a pretty sizable record store downtown. The owner was very excited to have us since she’d seen us at Sasquatch, and we played a solid, short set for a small but enthusiastic crowd. The evening’s venue, The Neurolux, was right next door, so we loaded our gear directly from one stage to the other in time for a sound check. The Neurolux is a great room. The place filled up nicely and we played a very fun, rambling set that night. In fact, it was probably one of the best shows on the tour. At one point I threw sticks at Garnet when his guitar cut out and I accidently hit a girl in the head. I may have had some whiskey that night, I can’t remember. We cut out and went back to the hotel when the DJ following us began playing some cheeseball top forty hip-hop.
We were all in pretty high spirits the next morning, since it was the last day of the tour before heading back to Seattle–it was beside the point that we’d be right back out again for four more days. The drive to Spokane got a little dicey and we saw several overturned cars that had veered off the freeway. We reached the venue, Bourbon Street, unscathed albeit a little late. Bourbon Street is actually the restaurant portion of a larger room called The Big Easy, and we had the run of the venue’s plush green room that overlooks the big stage. The employees brought up a case of Grolsch and we ordered food for after the performance. For some reason we started up a bar tab. This turned out to be a mistake. We had a great write-up in the local weekly and some fans did come out, but, partly because of the weather and partly because it was a Sunday, we once again played for a fairly small crowd. We were all drunk by the time we went on and we may have put on our sloppiest performance to date. Maracas were thrown, oaths were screamed, people were kicked, cues were missed, and B. Brown played bass for the last song when Snow was nowhere in sight. It was a mess. I took a girl up to the green room afterwards and in the meantime some drunken drama went down that I may not be at liberty to discuss here, but suffice to say that we got three hotel rooms that night. Somehow we’re booked to play this venue again on the next tour.