Comeback Kid are out on tour in Europe and have sent us in some notes from the road. Today's their last dispatch - we've enjoyed having them and hope they get back here safely! They released Broadcasting… in 2007 and Through The Noise last October. Their other episodes are here: Episode 1, Episode 2 Episode 3, Episode 4.
Groezrock Fest….where to start?
Comeback Kid spent a lot of our summer last year playing insanely big European music festivals, and it was a real humbling and awesome experience. If you're in a band, and you ever start to get an attitude about how great or important you are, play a few of these and get ready to re-familiarize yourself with reality. "Oh yeah man, we're huge, we put on the best damn show in rock bro! We just shreaded Euro-Fest 2009!" Really? You think so? Well now that it's actually dark out and the real bands are gonna start, Iron Maiden are going to roll out a 60-foot mechanical monster with damn lasers for eyes and proceed to make you look like a little baby for about four-and-a-half hours. It happens.
So needless to say, we were all very excited and thankful to be a part of Groezrock in beautiful Meerhout, Belgium this year. The lineup was enough (Get Up Kids, NOFX, Rise Against, etc), never mind the chance to stuff yourself with fried food and check out the local variety of Fest Bros. Outbreak had to play pretty early unfortunately, but most everyone was out and about and they had a great set. To try and work a huge stage like that, outdoors where you can't hear shit, and pull it off the way they did is a feat. Same goes for Bane, Misery Signals and Architects. I was very proud to be on tour with these guys and see them all kill it in front of literally thousands of people. It was an emotional day.
For better or worse, we had to wait until 8 o clock at night to play, which felt like all day. I killed time catching up with friends from various corners of the world, forcing myself not to have a beer at one in the afternoon, and attempting a nap in the lawn only to be nearly crushed by a bread truck. A bread truck.
Then I went and repped CBK in a video game competition. I was the most qualified out of everyone in the sense that I have played a video game before, or have at least heard of them. Or could point one out in a lineup of three or so other items. I was supposed to play a dude from Walls of Jericho, but in typical me fashion I went to the wrong damn tent and some poor girl had to drag me kicking and screaming through the rain to a tent on the other side of the fairgrounds. So I ended up playing the kids that made it to the finals. I tried to bring Stu Ross with me, but I think he realized the shaming that was about to come so he bailed. Then I put on a show, man. It probably looked something like a caveman flying a rocket ship, awkwardly mashing at buttons with my newly opposable thumbs, my face curled in befuddled humiliation. Oh well, I held my own and got a free game out of it, and got to hang out with some nice Belgians. At least I didn't act like a drunken chimpanzee later.
Just kidding, I did that.
I have to say this is the first show I remember being really nervous for in a long time. It's different in a tiny club with a lot of people, because your mistakes aren't on immediate display. When there's 50 feet of space between you and your bandmates and every note you play is broadcast through a Madison Square Garden sound system, you tend to over-think every little thing that could go wrong.
Somehow, we got through the set without any major mishaps and got one of the best reactions we've ever had. Top 5 shows for me personally, all time. It was one of those things where you had to think "Well, this probably won't ever happen again so I'm going to try and savor it now" and then suddenly, it was all over. If you were there, thank you so much for the warm reception. The support was overwhelming. I really hope we get to come back. Anyways, we put down our guitars and Casey and I ran to catch some of The Get Up Kids. Luckily we saw most of the set. They were fantastic, and I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to the members of that band for the probably 30 people from our tour that punished them throughout the night.
So now everyone on the tour is finished with their fest spot, and it was time for the savagery. They gave every band WAY too many drink tickets, and to make matters worse a lot of bands left early and gave us their tickets. Enough of them that Paul from Darkest Hour ate a few. For fiber. We watched our buddies in Rise Against play to the biggest set of the night. I Somehow managed to sneak to the front of the stage for NOFX despite bouncers politely asking us to leave.
Anyways, I won't bore you with the "oh we partied it was hilarious" tripe, but that's what happened and it ended with the quote of the night. Picture Bobby from Bane emerging from behind the bar yelling "I GOT TICKETS!" I think they had been trying to shut us down for quite some time, and he was quickly swarmed by security and everyone perceived as having anything to do with us was quickly ejected. It was a great end to a great day. Thanks to everyone involved.