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- Annihilator - Waking The Fury-Tour 2002 - On the road with friends -
- May, 11th 2002 - Bradford / Rio's -
Early this year I heard that Annihilator and Seven Witches will start their European tour in late April and will be around for about 4 weeks. Later when the dates been announced I decided to go to see them in the U.K., coz they should play at my birthday in Dudley. A nice idea, but after Nadja booked the flight, etc. the schedule got changed... So we arrived from London Stansted on May 8th in Birmingham. We spent 2 days in B'ham. Not one of the nicest towns, but we had fun.
On Saturday May 11th we took a coach to Bradford. After a kind of lunch and buying some junk food we headed to Rio's. On our way we saw some of the guys and when we arrived at the venue a warm welcome by our friends from Annihilator, Seven Witches and the crew! Tour manager Michael gave us our guest passes and did a little chit-chat with some of the guys. It was a sunny afternoon and we were standing outside of the venue and talked to the bus driver of the supporters bus. Martin said after we told him that it seems that this will be our only show due to the change of the schedule that it would be okay for him to give us a lift to Dudley and then to London, but it depends on the bands. Nadja took a look for Jack Frost, coz he's the head of Seven Witches and so the one to talk to. When he saw me standing there with their bus driver he guessed what we wanted to talk about. He spoke to his band and also to the opening band Debase which we never met before. The Swedish were so kind to agree and so it seems that our trip could go on.
When I woke up the bus was moved to the other side of the building. Almost everybody was already awake. The weather was fine and sunny. Around noon we could enter the JB's and took a look around. Catering wasn't ready... Luckily Seven Witches singer Wade Black had his own stuff and offered us a sandwich, so Nadja & I got some food. We are not part of the tour and so there wasn't catering for us, but we wouldn't have expected anything. And some were waiting for a shower...
Arriving at the early morning hours Martin parked the bus at Hyde Park and everybody was informed that the nightliner will leave there at 12:30 to the venue. Jack left early and wanted to go to the venue on his own. Around 11:00 a.m. Debase, Brian, Nadja and I left to get a coffee. We ended at McDonalds where we split up. Micke, singer of Debase and Debase drummer John, Brian, Nadja and I took a little walk on Oxford St. where Micke bought a jeans jacket, but too soon we had to get back to the bus. Micke told us about Oxford St. and the area, if he will retire one day from the music business, he can become a guide... During our walk back we met merchandiser André and we were back in time, but had to wait a few minutes for Joey Vera (Armored Saint, Fates Warning, Engine & Seven Witches) and Seven Witches singer Wade Black. Everyone was on the bus and we were waiting for Michael's call to get to the venue. After waiting for about 20 min. André and our bus driver Martin decided to head to the venue.
We made our way to Victoria Station in the morning and caught a coach to Stansted. But it took longer as it was supposed to be and so we had to hurry! We arrived just 35 min. before departure!!!! At RyanAir we checked in, but my photo case was heavy then on our way to the U.K. which was strange, coz it was less inside... No time for arguing! I had to check it in as fragile item. Thanks to all the people who were in the queue before us and let us get in first! So we arrived at gate 4 where we were supposed to leave from... But the gate was changed, everything delayed. We left from gate 11 and after a 50 min. long flight arrive at Eindhoven. Soon we had our big blue bag back and met some friends outside who came to pick us up. But when I tried to pick up my photo case, I had to learn that it wasn't there! Great!!!! A nice woman from RyanAir checked the left over luggage with me and we filled in the formula. They expected that the photo case was still in Stansted! She promised me to call Stanstedt immediately and that it will be in Eindhoven the next day. She said that there is the minimal chance that it got lost, but I should expect to get it the next day by courier.
The photo case arrived the other day, as the RyanAir employee expected. And while Nadja was doing the profiles of Debase and over doing some others beside writing some emails, I relaxed. On May 16th Nadja visited some friends while I was doing some CD reviews and started typing this tour diary. The bands played Paris' on 15th and in Zaandam on 16th... Guess someone will tell us about these shows when we are back...
Again we had to deal with problems. The friend who wanted to drive to Vosselaar had to work! So, Nadja called some people and at least her Mom gave us her car for the weekend! To pick up the car took longer and so we arrived at the Biebob around 7 p.m. The band and crew members were happy to see us and said that it was boring without us. Nice to hear! Sound tech BigBig was waiting outside the venue for his girl and almost everybody was hanging out outside, coz the backstage area at the Biebob is pretty small. Someone from Debase told us that the show in Paris was great for everybody, but Zaandam was a little strange... Nothing to tell about the shows... It was hot and sweaty as usual at the Biebob and the crowd was great.
Arriving at the Plato around 2 p.m. we met the guys and everybody was happy that we were back.
Martin was off the tour and the supports had a new bus driver. Nadja, Steffie (a friend of some of the guys and so we met several times in the past) and I left to the city center to fetch a coffee and we also got the frame Taz was looking for. Some Savatage fans came from Germany to meet Jack and so they were hanging out in front of the venue. We partly were hanging out inside and we asked Wade, Joe, Joey and Annihilator drum tech Nikolei (guitarist of Deception) to fill in our profiles. It was time for dinner, but Joe Comeau said "This is more important" and smiled. At the Plato I found a flyer with the program of Zwolle's Hedon which announced tomorrow's Annihilator show with Seven Witches and Bedare! I told my new Swedish friends and they made jokes about it. Actually I expected more fans to show up for this show... Anyway, Debase had a good start, even if most fans kept standing in the back. The few in the front row enjoyed the show and 'til the end more stand in front. Nadja and I helped again to take the Debase equipment off stage. Time for Seven Witches and it seemed that quite a few fans came to see the Americans not as much as for Annihilator, but... During the Annihilator set Taz had some problems. The stored programs were gone! Taz managed it and the show continued without a break. But that were the only technical problems today.
Izmet, the new bus driver, Nadja and I left for a coffee. Back at the venue we waited for the locals to arrive. Izmet was so kind to offer me his bunk and so I had about 3 hrs. sleep. Thanks a lot!
After we dropped André off at his home and after a few hours of sleep we returned the car and headed to Bochum. At the hotel we met Micko, Jonas and Sigge.
Arriving at the Matrix around 6 p.m. we decided to visit the supermarket REAL next door first. At the cash desk we met Joe who bought some PEZ, actually he bought the whole stock of PEZ they had! He ask us to save dinner for him. At the Matrix we told Michael to save food for Joe and then took a look around, checked the video camera. Jack asked us to film the show for him, but the camera didn't worked! I had checked it that morning and it was working... Strange. Same set, no problems tonight... Then during the set of Annihilator Nadja got a call, no good news and we left head over heels. Private business...
Due to this private stuff we couldn't see the show in Hamburg as planned. Time was passing and we were looking forward to see the guys at Friday's show in Fulda! Again our schedule had to be changed and we met a friend Friday night instead.
Three days without them and we were happy to be back! First we said hi to some friends
we knew from the Savatage tour and to Kyle's fiancee Annette.
The wives of the Debase guys had visited them in Hamburg and Micke's wife was so kind to bring us some Grillkrydder which Micke gave us now. Thanks a lot!
Back home we used the time to work on some stuff for our e-zine and to continue the tour diary. Work as usual. But our thoughts were with them again and again. Missing every&body of our tour family... No fun to wait... But on the other hand we had CDs to review and to prepare some interviews... Guess we should try to get a laptop soon to work on the road...
We arrived at Works in the afternoon and said hello to the guys. A surprise was that Frode (Scream Magazine, Norway) was there. Frode had joined Seven Witches for the shows in the Czech Republic and for today's. Someone came up with the idea to go down town and so Nadja, Frode, Jack and I entered Oliver's Renault Twingo and went to the city center. Frode and Jack were looking for a CD store. None of us knew Osnabrück and so we asked some people at the pedestrian zone. Finally someone told us the way to JPC store and we checked it out, but not what the guys were looking for. Nadja asked for another store and so we left JPC, but had to asked again, coz the description wasn't very good. Finally we arrived at the other store which had more rock & metal, but again not what they searched. Jack bought some cigar's for Jeff in a small store and we continued our way back to the car, coz Jack had to be back for soundcheck. We checked out Kaufhof's record department. No luck. Downstairs Jack and Frode found some candies, self-service and they tested some and mixed up chocolate covered nuts and almonds as well as jelly ones, ignoring that they have different prices per 100 gr. But it worked out, coz they don't speak German... Actually they speak enough to understand, but... We left to Works.
Today we arrived early at Aachen. On our way to the venue we saw Jonas & Micko sitting outside a pub and asked them for the way, coz we weren't sure about the directions. We parked at the venue and were hanging out with band, crew and friends. Too much business today and so we skipped the interviews and decided to do them by email. The bands were planning some jokes and everybody was excited about it. A small venue again and nobody expected many visitors, seemed that this will be a show for the bands and friends....
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