Archive for July, 2014

Slug in the Northwest 2

Sunday, July 20th, 2014

after a night on Bo and Cecelia’s lovely couch I woke up to Tibbs framing herself up in the window. What a perfect post for a cat. The night before we had made plans to meet Joey O for breakfast in town. Drew of course opted for a long solo Yoga session in the bedroom that he and Conor shared.

Joe took us to this semi-diner like place that had vegan options on it’s menu. I can’t remember the name right now, but I remember the waitress was a friend or acquaintance of his. That seemed to be the case last time as well, we couldn’t go far in Bellingham without running into a buddy of Mr. Olmstead.

The food was really good, I got some fancy waffles I think and maybe some hash browns? I don’t remember but I loved everything on the plate. The conversation was exactly what I’ve come to expect from Joe. A rant on a topic I would never spend a second thinking about, yet he had so much to say about. Joe told us about his experience at Disney recently and how he strategized his trip. How it’s necessary to plot which ride to hit when in order to have a successful trip. It all made perfect sense, but was not ever something I’d think up myself. He’s quite a dude.

We drove back over toward the main strip to hit the record store Every Day Music. This time I didn’t luck out in the slightest. Instead I opted to walk to get a donut from Rocket Donuts. That shit was proper.

On my way I stopped into a bagel place to pee and saw these awesome period photos from Bellingham’s history. Obviously their history on the West doesn’t go back as far as in the East, but this was still a while ago.

And then for some reason they had this photo of a Bike store in Williamsburg with a bunch of locals out front. Odd.

After we all got back together, Bo from work and the rest of us from our respective pass times, we made our way to Canada. For me it would be the first time in almost ten years. The last opportunity I had to do so my passport had been expired. We had a little bit of a worry that one of us wouldn’t make it over, due to some “unpaid parking tickets” on their record, so we approached hopeful, but cautious. The fella, Tom, who was nice enough to set up our show hit us up with some paperwork ahead of time.

Back a couple years ago bands from the states would have to lie their way across the border, pretending they weren’t in bands, because with out a visa in order, playing a show in a different country and collecting money is considered illegal. Well it seems someone combed every legal paper in the Canadian system because therein lines a piece of legislature that let us right over without a fuss. This was my first view of the Western side of Canada as we happily crossed the border. The law itself has to do with playing a free show, and collecting a portion of money for gas reimbursement only. Perfect. The girl at customs must’ve looked at our passports for about a split second and handed them back to us. Because if she had looked a bit more at them in detail she may not have let these serial killer look-a-likes through.

Seriously, I mean Drew looks like he’s stabbed more than a few people, I look like some kinda mobster that fashions cement shoes, Conor like he’d been on the run and living on the lamb until being picked up in a sewer, and Andre straight up looks like a young Pablo Escobar.

Anyway, she asked us where we were headed, when we were coming back, and how much promotional merchandise we had on us and said “enjoy your stay” or something like she was a concierge at a hotel. Wild. So we had some Vancouver traffic to make it into the city, but there was a ton to look at…. and at least it smelled real good on the highway…. WAIT, I’M REMEMBERING WRONG. Eh well the only cool thing was this wacky ass tire sculptor outside of a mall complex. And it smelled like cow shit the entire length of the highway before.

Nah but at least the drive wasn’t too long. Oh yeah and the famous “Jazzy hip-hop awl DAY” shirt made an appearance. Refer back to the So Adult / Deep Pockets entries for that story. Bo had just gotten back from a European vacay right before this trip so he regaled us with stories from the HR Giger museum to pass time while we headed further into the city.

We here headed to play the Alf House. This is the flier, though if my memory serves me correctly the line up was almost totally different. Tom, the show booker, plays in Snob and they couldn’t make it due to the drummer or something. And I think Kaiten dropped too?

The house was tight. Apparently they were going to do the show in this backyard… seems normal to me. We ended up playing basketball for a few minutes until one of us sent the ball straight over the fence to the neighboring yard. Although this was not a “knock on the door and run back and get it situation.” The neighbors were a factory and clearly their doors had been closed for hours. Yes, we brought the dick.

The rain started to kick up so the show was moved into the basement. That’s a little more like it. Each band that played was really awesome. Apparently there was another gig up the street that some of the potential crowd might’ve been at, but if you ask me this shit was packed in enough. I got into conversation with a lot of people out front and I was surprised to learn how much they knew about our scene back home. It was funny answering questions as well, like I was a gossip reporting things to the local rag of a paper. I get that Brooklyn is what’s happening, so it wasn’t completely out of left field. But what I was incredibly happy to see was that after they got a sense of our relationship with what goes on in NYC they started to spit the real comments. Like how from the outside it all seems like a big fashion show, and how it seems overtly cliquely, and more of a who’s who than a united scene. Surprising how on point these people from another country, and across the continent could be.

This was Oaf, I think?

Their set was tight… wanted to get some footage of the space and this was what I could get from the very back. During their set I went up to find the bathroom in this punkhouse. I only mention this because there was like.. a gardening spade in the open top of the toilet. After ten seconds of staring at it I realized that it was a necessary tool to flush the toilet. You sort of dug under the suction cup to release the water. Weird, wild stuff these kids think of.

Anyway, we eventually set up to go on and blaze through on of the hottest sets of my life. I had so much fun at this place though.

Here’s your boy, along with Bozart by my side. It was so cramped in there I could hardly breathe. The bass amp at my back I had vibrations running through my spine. Never the most flattering shots of my when I drum as I’m hunched over and angled live a cave man.

The Canucks out there knew some of the songs and were pumped on the ones they didn’t.  It was truly a blast.

Here’s some of the crowd getting down. The dude is the Vacant State shirt in the homie that hooked the whole thing up, thanks Tom.

These up close and personal shots are brought to you by the photographer Ryan Rose, thanks for taking them dude.

After the show

I don’t know what this wacky ass, side ways video is but we this was after the gig. Bo had to be back at the lanes the following morning so we couldn’t really hang too much in Vancouver. Not that there was a lot going on. I mean earlier in the evening we ate massive plates of authentic Chinese tofu, what more could you want out of a city? How about Canadian candy from a gas station? Yes, please! That and some weird flavored Doritos and we were on our way stateside. We did a little loop of the downtown area and eventually decided to head back from B-ham.

The following morning as our hosts headed for work we either slept in or took a hike. Me and Drew did the hiking. It was cool and wet, as it often is, and we hiked what I think they called “the green mile”. By that I mean we walked along a pathway that was parallel to the roadway. It wasn’t much to behold, but it was well worth it. Very lush and green, mossy and overgrown, but kept in check enough to make it a clean and safe place to run, walk, or bike. Drew and I rapped about the new home he was purchasing, and the ins and outs of working in our respective industries.

We were on our way to the Co-op, which was like a mini heaven for Drew. He spent a great deal of time sniffing out new products to stock back in Sayville that might not have hit the East coast yet. I bought some apples and headed over to say hi to Bo. He wasn’t super busy, despite the rain, and hipped me to the Super Mario Salvadorian food truck. Bo suggested a burrito but I opted for a few papusas. I tried to get Andre over to enjoy the food and company of his native land’s people, but he wasn’t bout it. He basically said if he wanted to eat Salvadorian he’d do it in his own damn kitchen. Makes sense. When in Rome, I suppose.

I headed down the road a bit to scope out the thrift store/record shop. I didn’t have anything in mind that I wanted to find, but I did find some cool shit. For example, a pair of military binoculars for Charlotte (since we’re always trying to cop a closer look at NYC’s birds of prey) and a pristine copy of Master Of Reality. Both were unexpected finds, but money I was happy to spend.

This place, who’s name eludes me, had tons of cool shit in it. Like these old reels of monster movies.

Or these collectable Batman slippers.

I wanted to but this copy of FF49 just because but $30 wasn’t worth it to me. I

I headed out and walked back toward camp and for a second felt the wind get a little warmer, maybe a little more humid and looked to my left… oh I was transported back home! Ahhhhh, nothing like New Yoke pizza! Amirite??

I walked the green mile thing again and tried to have a whistle conversation with this bird. He/she was kinda feeling it actually. I got some quiet whistles back. When I got back to the residence it was now fully sunny and clear. Cecelia asked if we wanted to go for a hike and me and Andre happily obliged.

She started her own sort of “hiking club” with a close friend in an effort to get out and enjoy the trails more often, and she took us to one she thought we would enjoy. At the base were hundreds of tall but slim trees stemming  from the side of the hill. Their bases curved just slightly giving them a warped sort of optical illusion.

After we hiked a bit of the way up Cece admitted this wasn’t the trail she intended, but me and Dre insisted we didn’t give a shit. We just wanted to check out the land. Andre hadn’t ever seen anything of the sort, and I was eager to see a bit more than we had last time.

Everything was lush and green, completely alien feeling to me. Our forests out here may be lush but for the most part are dry.

The mists was literally rolling through the hillside maintaining the mossiness of the hillside. Aside from a few sporadic bird calls, there wasn’t much wild life to be seen.

It was a very isolated feeling forrest, but that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. It was more on the peaceful side of isolation.

It certainly felt like some LOTR elves were aiming their arrows right at our heads without us even knowing.

We hiked a ways up and had to stop multiple times to catch our breaths like we were Life’s Blood. It was surprisingly steep for its appearance. Looking at the photos now it doesn’t look like an incline, but that is only because the forrest floor was so overgrown. If you took a dive you’d be bumping quite a ways down.

The higher up we got I started to notice more and more downed trees (trees are down, people) and then noticed the other trees that set up shop right on top of them. It’s like they were wrestling and after one was knocked down the other put it’s foot on top like “what?!”

A lot of the trees were much thicker than they appear as well. Whatever ripped these suckers from their roots had to be some strong ass gusts of wind. Either that or a really angry Sasquatch was just flexin

We reached a sort of plateau and decided to make our way back down. Cecelia hadn’t hiked that path before and wasn’t sure how much longer there was to go. Add that to the fact we eventually had to meet everyone back and head for Seattle to play a show and we decided to head back. But before we did we headed down the other side of the hill, toward the water.

The view was amazing. Here we had some of the islands off the coast of Washington I guess, and just below us out of view was the railroad that ran around this body of water. Must be an amazing rail to ride.

Here Dre gives you a slight idea of the drop below down to the water. Out in the middle of the agua was a diamond shape poking out. I couldn’t make sense of it, because it couldn’t been a former dock, or maybe some kind of fishing traps. Pretty weird lookin.

The trees down here were really cool  too because they seemed like the only ones in the area that actually got touched by the sun, so they are a little more sun baked.

Cece was driving me crazy because right behind her is about a 40 foot drop and she didn’t seem to care.

Heading back to the car I was amazed by the sheer magnitude of this tree. My photo did not do it service, but Andre’s did.

Though I’m not standing in front of it, I am standing on the same plane. It was wider than my wingspan, that’s for sure.

We headed back to town, got some really dope ice cream and went back to Cecelia’s to gather our things and meet the boys. We were on our way back down to Seattle.

Slug in the Northwest 1

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

I wanted to try and get some of this shit out sooner to the trip so my memory wouldn’t vague out on me, but that didn’t happen. I haven’t been very active on any of this type of shit at all lately, just cause it’s hard to maintain a steady flow of posts in between so many other interests. Anyway, me and the boys planned a trip around a Fest that one of Conor’s homies helped to put on out in Seattle. We jumped on the the after show of their Rain Fest out there and decided to book a few more shows around it.

So we basically booked some tickets and got some shows booked. Flash forward a couple months and we were on our way to the airport. It was a pretty clear morning which was cool

So we all got on this piece together, which was cool. I got the strangers side, but I’m fine with that.

Hey, that’s me

Real quick though, why not just take these things out?

We know this, but you still keep the stupid ashtray!

So anyway after the flight we had some tired buckaroos

Both backseat motherfuckers had heavy lids

Our first destination was to Chupacabra (coo-cco rico, coo-coo rico!) in Seattle which had some bangin ass food. like legit as fuck

I was very happy to see the crack of this wind shield once more (which frankly I can’t believe is still in working order maybe two years later)

and even more happy to be in a car with this guy and Lady Cece. The last time we hung was too long ago, and it was in NYC. so I missed those two, as well as all the other So Adult brethren.

Anyway, the last time I was out in Bellingham Bo and Cecelia were about to move into a new place. The extent of seeing the place was a finger pointing out the window as we drove by. But here we were at their new spot, soaking up all it’s magnificence. This is a shitty camera phone pic, so it sucks, but that is one hell of a view…

Like… dey got mountains and lakes all in one place! Shiiiiiiet

This is a panoramic of that view (click for a bigger view)

Anyway, as per usual Bo and Cecelia pretty much made us right at home and relaxed the second we got in. We took in the nice new spot they have, and hung out a while. Bo gave me a Wu-Tang hat he found a while back –  you can see a piece of it in this pic – nice guy

We futzed with guitars for a bit and semi showed Bo some songs. He is a pro though, and pretty much had all his parts fuckin air tight and solid.

how sick is this apt though, nice mounting mural behind the couch and everything.

Oh and usual they had some sick spreads to offer use this one was like some sunflower oil spread thing? I can’t even remember

And how awesome was it to add Tibbs to the first of the #tourcats tag!

She’s so freakin cute and loves her new place

she just chills by the window and peers out for hours. I would too if I were her

We caught up for a while and exchanged some stories before making a plan for the night

It was just awesome to be back with these two. It was just like we had been hanging out on the reg since we last saw them

Tibs also chills on LP paper bags like our girls do, I thought that was awesome

here is another shot of the view after the haze cleared a bit. So sick

Later that evening we headed to the alley, which is where Bo both works and practices with So Adult. Deep Pockets also was able to jam here last time, and much like last time we had a special audience member

I was so stoked to see this long haired motherfucker, Joey O, walk in!

he was gonna be joining us on a part of the trip, but he and another special guest came to hang out for a bit while we jammed. As stated earlier Bo maybe had two questions about the songs, but overall didn’t need any practice. total pro. it was awesome

once we were done jamming (and mainly sweating) we went up to do this to the little snack section of the lanes. no bowling this time, but free sodas…. big time, baby

here is our other special guest… DEREK! I was again so very stoked to see this cat. I was bummed he has a life and also couldn’t just come along for the ride, or as a second bass player, or 3rd guitar player, or whatever

We got to get some good hang time before heading back to the crib

Drew in particular was living up about 7 hours past his normal bed time. The next morning we were goin to try our hand at entering Canada (if I remember correctly) and we were a little nervous about our luck…