Achtung!

Hello from Cologne. I’m on a computer in an internet cafe so this will be quick, and probably with wrong letters here and there because the keyboards are different.

Arrived in Dusseldorf on Sunday, then trained it into Cologne. Train was late, but no big deal. Got into the hotel – actuallz a 3 bedroom apartment, HUGE esp compared to our closet of a room in London. Went right out again to see the Dom and take pictures. Walked around FOREVER until it was dark, managed to order some italian food from a restaurant near by, then crashed. We are in the old section along the Rhine. It’s filled with all sorts of restaurants and bars, cobblestone streets, tons of hotels. Very easy to get lost but Iäm managing. The language barrier hasn’t been too bad, I just don’t talk to anyone unless it’s absolutely necessary. No internet in the room, so pictures will wait until Ghent or some other spot with hotel internet. I felt bad using the hotel desk computer last night to check important email last night.

Anzwaz. It was mass at the Dom on sunday, plus getting dark, so we returned Monday (after finding out the museums are all closed Mondays) and wandered around. Climbed the 562 or so odd steps up the belfry/spire. So out of shape, but I made it. Great view though obstructed by fencing so bad pictures. Climbed back down, checked out the treasury full of ornate gold and jeweled Catholic things…crosses and rings and shrines etc. Walked forever again, shopped now that the stores were open, more walking, and more walking, got more italian food (the prospect of ordering something strange and gross horrifies me, pizza is safe), took the tripods out for night shots of all the same places we shot during the day. Walked across the train bridge to the other side of the Rhine, and back. No more walking! Crashed again.

Today I went to the Ludwig Museum – Art – and lots of it. Fantastic really. So many important artists and works of genius. Very inspiring. I keep thinking of the Resistance Art show and trying to figure things out about it in my head. Don’T KNOW WHAT TONIGHT BRINGS OR WHAT HAPPENED TO THIS KEZBOARD THAT ITÄS ALL IN CAPS NOW: THINGS CLOSE EARLY HERE TOO; AND GET QUIET REAL FAST: TOMORROW IS THE SHOW; WHICH REMINDS ME I HAVE TO FIND OUT HOW TO GET THERE; NEED A MAP: THURSDAZ WE LEAVE FOR GENT: OK THIS IS ANNOYING; DONE NOW: NITE

trent cancelled the show zesterdaz apparentlz….and as expected i may trz to go to some of the extra shows i initiallz decided not to go to…hahah. surprize. but he has to realize hes an old man now, and he cant go on singing every day the kind of songs and shows that he does without hurting his voice. take some days off man. i think iäll try for the extra brussels and berlin shows。。berlin, not sure though because there is so much i want to do there。 well see

Meeting Old Friends and NIN London #3

Morning

Got up early to finally meet up with Kevin at Paddington Station, before going to meet Glen and his family at St Pauls. It was sorta weird to finally meet him as well, cuz like I said it should have happened 10 years ago. We had coffee at the station, then headed to St Pauls, got more drinks, and sat on the steps to wait for Glen at noon. Caught up on everything since we were last in touch (aside from last week haha). Glen and his wife Anna and his 2 kids arrived. Cute cute kids, Syd a budding photographer haha. We walked over the Millennium Bridge to Tate Modern. One of their exhibits at the moment are big slides that run from different levels down to the bottom. We all took a ride down, it was the shortest one, but wow super dizzy at the bottom. Syd loved it and went down a few times. The kids needed some food, so Kevin and I started looking around. It was one of those moments where I don’t get art…and when I think I need to stick some branches into some plaster and make up some long pretentious bull about what it represents and how awesome it, and I am and get someone to buy it for 1000s of dollars. One of the art works was a railing attached to the wall. Wtf. But then we did also get to see Dali and Picasso and some Monet, art that was actually something special and different. It was actually someone creating something from nothing, not going to Home Depot, buying a piece of railing, and calling it art. The 2ndfloor had an exhibit you needed a ticket for but part was free, by Gilbert and George, very political pieces, lots of color and text, and generally cool looking work. We went to find Glen and family, and Syd went on the slides again, then we started to walk back toward St Pauls. I wanted to get to Brixton around 3, and Kevin had to get to work.

Afternoon

So we departed and I headed to Brixton. Alex and David were already there and told me to get my tickets right away because Brandy had been out to say something was going to happen. Well…that didn’t work out in the end. Brandy ended up coming out around 5 or so to tell everyone that nothing was going to happen, Trent changed his mind, and we could all go get food etc.

I was in a bad mood, feeling literally sick to my stomach, and claustrophobic. Once in we were in the usual place but I decided I wasn’t going to be able to handle it today. I was getting hostile and feeling like I was going to snap at someone so I headed back a bit. There were rails in the middle of the floor every so often so I headed to stay near one of them. Well everyone I ended up being around was ridiculously annoying in one way or another. If it wasn’t couples who needed a room, it was the idiot who kept glaring at me when I’d push him, after moshers pushed him into me. Dude. Push them back into the pit retard. I finally left that area too and ended up behind the sound board…dealing with these drunk kids who were irritating. I stayed there though because there wasn’t much choice left haha.

3 shows, 3 different setlists. They began playing The Downward Spiral all the way through until The Becoming, in order, but skipping Ruiner. After The Becoming came Last which sounded way better today for some reason – not sure if it was because I was far back and the acoustics were better or if it was just better. From TDS we also got Eraser, Reptile (yay) and Hurt (boo). I thought it would have been neat if they did just play TDS all the way through. What else did we hear today…Wish, Gave Up, Help Me I Am In Hell, La Mer/Into the Void, No You Don’t, Only, The Hand That Feeds, Survivalism, Dead Souls, Head Like A Hole….Trent talked a bit more, and it seemed as if his voice wasn’t bothering him as much. But by the end of the show, the closing Hurt, Hand that Feeds and HLAH it seemed to be bothering him again.

Awesome show of course, despite my crap crowd experience and being hostile and irritated. I must say the merch bootleggers in the UK are way better than the US. Because of the people I’m with I didn’t find it appropriate to yell “I don’t even like nine inch nails” when they would ask if I wanted a shirt. They just wouldn’t get it and would think I had tourrettes or something. But I thought it to myself. And actually I’ve bought 2 items…a black and red stripe girl shirt with the NIN logo, and a pretty nice zip up hoodie that has the logo and “performance 2007” embroidered on it. It’s also amusing to watch the coppers carrying arm loads of confiscated bootleg shirts haha.

I’m on the verge of convincing Adr2 to meet us in Brussels or Amsterdam. 🙂 Somehow things don’t feel exactly right without her next to me, and I find it hard to get as excited by myself. So much of the tour has been shared with her, that it’s just weird. I need someone I can just look at, and know what we’re thinking about, regarding some idiot near us, or a super hot Trent moment. Tho Alex did a good job in sharing hot Trent moments. And he’s straight hahaha.

So the first leg of the journey is over. We depart for Dusseldorf/Cologne tomorrow morning. The non English speaking leg begins. I won’t be nervous until we land and everyone’s speaking something else. Though that’s not that much different from work – just a different language that I don’t know being spoken.
(I remembered another Bono Trent moment – in the preshow music Trent’s now playing Lou Reed’s “Sattelite of Love” haha Maybe next Trent will come out in gold lame and devil horns haha)

London Photos

Meeting for the First Time

Today brought FINALLY meeting Pierre (aka Luis), my friend from Mexico City who I met on compuserve 12 years ago. Didn’t really think it would ever happen, but yet it did, and in a country neither of us are from. In the end we both thought the meeting went better than expected. We actually both thought we’d have nothing to say in person and that it would be weird but it really wasn’t at all. I expected him to be shorter and sound mexican, but he was tall and he sounds just as American as anyone, leaning a bit toward sounding Brit. David and I met him in Camden Town and I did my shopping trip through Camden Market buying a few cool new things. A very cool place, I wish we had things like that near me or even Toronto. We walked forever, I forget all the places we went. We had lunch at a pub, then went to Harrods cuz Pierre thought they’d have Pez haha. They didn’t but it was cool because I didn’t really remember much about Harrods from the first trip 11 years ago. They have this sort of lame memorial to Princess Diana and Dodi in the lowest level. As far as memorials go, it wasn’t as nice as it should be I think.

What else did we do? Went to Oxford circus to shop more, ended up at Hamley’s toy store, which amused me because that is where MJ went 10 years ago when I was here with all the mj friends. Found some Pez there, so at least Phill will get something, though I think they’re not too great. Also Covent Garden, with raher uninteresting street performers, and more shops. More walking, eventually going to Liverpool area to see Jack the Ripper’s haunts without taking the tour. Pierre was a great tour guide, telling us that “something happened here, the tour always stops here” haha. We went to the famous alley, and by “Jack’s Pub”. The pub sold absinthe and I felt like I should have some, as wretched as it is, just because I could hahah. We didn’t go in so no absinthe (thank god). Walked more, got tea/drinks someplace, then wandered back to the station. 9 hours later, said goodbye and David and I headed back to the hotel. Alex had gone on a day trip to Stonehenge etc and didn’t have a key, so we thought he might be waiting for us.

On the way home we got on the wrong train, ended up missing the only stop that we could switch at, so we got off at some station to back track. Kevin called and I don’t do good on the phone to begin with, especially not walking, so I stopped to talk. Then we all get kicked out of the station because of a “reported emergency”. First thought, bomb. I thought of Jerry being on the tube when it was bombed, just in a different area. So everyone was ushered out and standing around at street level waiting to see if they’d open the station up. We had no clue where we were and how to get home. It was cold and eventually asked how far the next station was, then walked to it. Got back to the hotel just fine after that.

Long day of lots of walking, so lazy night in.

 

Also I forgot in the first concert post: During Piggy Trent has a spotlight below him, which he picks up and goes into the crowd with, shining it in everyones faces. I think Trent’s been watching old U2 concerts too much. First the going on stage with the house lights on, then the other Bono things from summer that I commented on but forget now, and now copying Bono’s “Bullet the Blue Sky” routine. Nothing wrong with that though 🙂
 

London Show 2

London show #2 3-8-07

Special event for the Spiral kids today – we were let in to listen to Year Zero and have some snacks. We got let in around 4:30, there was sandwiches and dessert things and tea. Jeordie and Aaron came out to introduce the album. Jeordie was smiling and actually looked cute. Aaron was funny, telling us they were going to have pizza for everyone but thought we’d be out of our element so we got tea and crumpets instead. Jeordie then began to play the album off his phone/pda into the mic before having the album start on the sound system. Initial reaction – it’s kind of hard to gauge, just like when Adr2 and I went up to Toronto to hear With Teeth. Listening to it that loud with echo and distortion of the venue, vocals were drowned out and things like that. Trent said it began as an experiment in noise and you can definitely hear that. I don’t really know why but it kept reminding me of Gary Numan. It’s going to take some listens by myself in my car etc before I can really form an opinion on it. It’s promising, let’s say 🙂 I’m not scared anymore haha.

After the album finished we were let back into the lobby to collect our cameras and cell phones, and instead of shipping us back outside like they were going to, we were able to queue inside to get right back on to the floor not long after.

The show itself started and I was a bit disappointed that it seemed like we were right back to the same old show… Love Is Not Enough, Sin, Terrible Lie, March of the Pigs, Something I Can Never Have, The Frail/The Wretched (which I was glad to see back)…but then he threw in The Beginning is the End from Year Zero, which came off very cool, tho having only heard it an hour before it’s kind of hard to really compare. That was followed by Closer, with super hot homoerotic trent/aaron action. Instead of Burn following, they brought back Deep. Awesome. Hadn’t seen that since..the November 05 leg. I think No You Don’t followed, Gave Up, Help Me I Am In Hell, Eraser…what else..Survivalism, Wish, Hurt, The Hand That Feeds – renamed “A Lovesong for George Bush” – Head Like A Hole, oh! La Mer/Into the Void…no Piggy and no Suck, score! Haha. I feel like I’m missing something there.

Have you ever heard a Polish guy sing Hurt? And no this is not the beginning of a bad joke. The crowd today was 10x worse than yesterday, I was smashing this poor super short girl in front of me, then eventually got pushed in between her and V at the rail. All the pushing by these 2 Polish or maybe Russian guys, who when they weren’t singing broken english lyrics, they were talking in whatever language. But Hurt in Polish/Russian broken english becomes “I will let you go” and “I will let you die” hahaha. He continuously apologized for crushing us. Dude, we’re at a show, it’s alright. But what isn’t alright is using me for a pogo stick and humping. Brusied up real nice, but feel fine.

Great show again, and just different enough from the 28 other shows from 05-06 to make it not totally…what’s the word? The same. haha

Departures and Arrivals

Observations from the flight and recap of Day 1

JFK Delta terminal – ridiculously dated looking with lots of mirrors. And almost $8 for a slice of pizza and a gross snapple iced tea.

Alex and I were such nerds, we had almost a 3 hour layover and nothing to do. I remembered I had left the NIN DVD in my laptop before packing, so we watched it. And tried not to sing along and rock out and be too fangirl/boi.

Temperature in London, 54F, heat wave!

Dinner on the plane was better than I remember it 10 years ago, but then again I wasn’t such a microwave dinner expert at that point in my life. Pasta with salad and a cold roll etc. I should have taken a picture of it in the tradition of my father but it was too difficult to get my camera out at that point. My “Single Serving Friend” next to me offered me his cheese spread….

The airplane first claimed they’d be showing us Dreamgirls, but instead we got Rocky Balboa. Yet another sign that Adr2 should be here with me!!! I looked up at the screen once and did a double take cuz Sly Stalone looked just like Jeordie haha. The airplane also showed us a commercial for the CIA, and Criss Angel (woo!)

We arrived in London on time I guess, though it took a long while to get through customs and then longer to get our train ticket. By that time our luggage had been round and round on the claim belt until they were taken off and just waiting there for us. That was nice and less stressful for me.

Gatwick Express brought us to Victoria which then brought us to Edgware where we are staying. The guy who sold me my tube ticket at Victoria thought I was Scottish?? I said no, Canadian 🙂 Anyway, Edgware is an Arab neighborhood with lots of little grocery stores and electronic stores. The hotel claimed to be 400m from the underground station. 400m my ass! We got stuck in a rain shower walking to the hotel. David was already there and we ended up running into him as we walked. That was about 10am and we couldn’t check in until 2. We stowed our luggage away and left to waste 4 hours walking around the neighborhood. Discovered a small farmers/street market, got some cool socks, and stopped at a greasy spoon type restaurant that sold something called “bubbles”. Overtiredness kicked in and we were really silly and retarded. Alex had a moment thinking that the pepper was brown sugar. I had my own moment later when we passed a Chinese acupuncture herbal medicine shop and Alex said there were 25 pound massages – I thought they were massages that made you lose 25 pounds, not massages that cost 25 pounds. We walked forever, by Regents Canal full of house boats – David called it a trailer park of house boats – to Paddington station and back, into some art deco antique stores to scout for the terminal, etc. Finally checked in and crashed.

Up and out again around 8:30 we headed “down town” to Picadilly Circus so Alex could see London’s Times Square. Wandered around and ended up going by a Hard Rock Casino – a combination of my last 2 jobs, I had to go in. Except it was members only. But it was free to become a member. Very small place but excellent reuse of an old theatre space. We got some food there, then wandered some more. Ended up finding Chinatown, then ended up in Trafalgar Square, continued walking toward Big Ben and Parliament. Along the way we passed Downing Street. Definite increased security from 10 years ago, but much less than the White House, where you can’t even walk by it 4 blocks away to look at it from across a huge lawn. In front of Parliament there were 4 tents set up with protestors who have been there for 6 years. We talked to one of them, named The Ant, who was a quite interesting fellow. His arm was in a cast and shattered from escaping from a holding cell in Oxford and falling a few stories, all while trying to protect trees. Now he’s up in London as a part of this war protest and planned to stay there for a while.

Far too much walking, and it was late and the tube ended up shutting down at some station where we didn’t know where we were, so we cabbed it back to the hotel. Very Very VERY long day.

Fangirl post #1

I’m going to post my very fangirl review of the first show first, while it’s still somewhat fresh in the mind. Family needs not to read this since I know you won’t care. This is going to be very stream of consciousness as I remember seemingly random things.

We met up with the guy who was going to sell Alex his extra ticket (for less than face value!) and headed to Brixton. Got there around 12:30 maybe, right behind S and V. It was great to see them again and hear their stories of the tour so far. The butter story was the most entertaining, as well as the almost fight/death threat story.

Fast forward to doors, 1 back in front of Aaron. Surprise? Ladytron opened, and I had been interested in seeing what they would be like after looking at their myspace. Sounded good but not extremely exciting on stage. But better than some other opening bands I’ve seen.

/begin fangirl

hfs!! trent went away for a few months and got some new ultra hot moves *dies*. just the first 5 seconds of “somewhat damaged” and the little move he did….gah. I really think he has come into his sexiness as he has aged, because I would never describe Downward Trent as being sexy…but dear lord.

/end fangirl???

As expected “Somewhat Damaged” followed by “Last”, then followed by of all things “Heresy”…incredible opening to a show. “Heresy” was totally unexpected and I was very happy that I hadn’t been looking at setlists. The whole show was really a surprise, as to what was going to come next. In the end, there was 1 Pretty Hate song, most of Broken, 7 Downward songs, a few Fragile and 2 With Teeth.

I really had forgotten that Jeordie was even there until the beginning of “Eraser” when they start playing with the old factory beat up looking light fixtures (which gave me a revelation, more later) that have strings on them so they can grab them and swing them around. He had way too much fun doing that hahahaha. It was really hard to take ones eyes off of Trent.

Setlist…this is what I remember in no particular order: Somewhat Damaged, Last, Heresy, March of the Pigs, Piggy, Ruiner, Closer, Burn, Gave Up, Help Me I Am In Hell, Eraser, Hurt, The Day The World Went Away, The Big Comedown, Only, The Hand That Feeds, Head Like A Hole, Wish, Suck, Survivalism….

It was a fairly tame crowd, smooshed, but there wasn’t a single idiot violent ass person around us, it was a nice change. Not hurt at all, tho I’ve now noticed my wrist is bruised but no idea how – I was pressed up against S the whole show. Very few crowd surfers, and it was rather cool as the smoke fans the band used blew right on us more or less. At one point the security guard offered me water, and I looked at him like “Why?” There was no need. Of course a few people back they were all hot and dying, so he stood in front of us to pass back water…right as The Big Comedown started…dude…seriously…big comedown you need to move!!! He finally did and good thing too 😛

Oh right, before the show, V had gone to the bathroom to scope out the USB situation, and S and I were talking about where they had been found etc etc etc, wondering where they’d be today…neither one of us realizing that it was right in front of us taped to a flyer on the rail hahaha. She noticed and grabbed it. We’ll see tomorrow what was on it this time.

There were alot of Americans there. A good chunk of the Spiral line were Americans. I’m not sure how I feel about that. Makes things feel alot like they did back in the states, and I had sorta been looking forward to something different.

But we did get it. We got a completely different show, and thinking about what was not played, like Terrible Lie, I didn’t miss the omissions. It was really nice to see a completely different show than the With Teeth tour. I wouldn’t say it has alot to do with the concept of Year Zero (yet) but different songs, and you can sort of see how the shows could morph into being more meaningful as to the concept of the album. Sorta seems like the songs Trent has chosen for this leg could fit into the theme of the new record if you try real hard haha.

Very awesome show. At one point while queuing we had remarked about how many security guards were around – alot – which was odd. S ended up hearing later that there were so many guard around because there was going to be a meet and greet. I swear to god, the NIN camp scopes out the line to see who’s in it, and then decides to have a meet and greet based on that. And that means I will never ever meet that bastard! haha 😉 29 shows and counting…

Ah yes the revelation…another rumor is that Trent is doing a Year Zero movie. And looking at the faux ruined “factory” lights, I realized how perfectly Buffalo Central Terminal, and other Buffalo abandonments, could fit into the theme of Year Zero. hollywoodinmemoriam.com speaks of a dirty bomb hitting the oscars in LA…the Terminal could easily be used as a set for that sort of storyline, without having to make a fake set. So many other places that could be used for sets in a Year Zero themed movie. So now my main goal in life is to get Trent to use the Terminal in his YZ movie, and then work on the piano concert on the Terminal mezzanine. 🙂 And going along with that, the art show I want to do..

i am so cold. and i called into work so i wouldn’t have to go outside. and no, work is not warmer than here, last night it was terrible.

BUT i finally got the whole europe trip planned out, minus train tickets.
March 5 – Depart for London
March 6 – Arrive London
March 7 8 and 10 – NIN shows in London
March 11 – Depart for Cologne
March 14 – NIN show in Cologne
March 15 – Depart for Ghent
March 18 – Depart for Brussels & NIN show in Brussels
March 20 – Depart for Amsterdam
March 21 – NIN show in Amsterdam
March 22 – Depart for Berlin
March 24 – NIN show in Berlin
March 26 – Depart to London
March 27 – Depart for home 🙁