Hello people; thanks for stopping in. We’re currently stoked to be on our first tour in the United States of America, alongside our friends in Protest The Hero, Periphery, The Jeff Loomis Band, and The Safety Fire — talk about best foot forward, huh? All these guys are great, and make our evenings consistently entertaining. Here’s what’s happened so far in…

Chicago, IL: The Windy City treated us well, and served as an excellent introduction in to the American music scene. This was the night we met everyone that we’ll be spending the next month or so with, and it’s honestly hard to conceive a kinder, more supportive group of musician’s and crew.

We were happy to take the stage to a well-filled room, and happier to see enthusiastic faces singing word for word with us when we kicked in. A very smooth and enjoyable night on the stage.

Post-set we relaxed and mingled with our new tour-mates, as well as members of bands like Born Of Osiris and Veil Of Maya. After discovering that Jeff Loomis’ van battery had died, we gave them a boost, and then headed out, on our way to Lawrence, KS…

Lawrence KS: Tonight was a very cool set; comfortable might be a better way to put it, despite the freakishly hot day. Everything seemed to just flow out naturally, and the crowd was very receptive to it, giving their words of appreciation throughout the night. We had many in depth conversations within circles of characteristically kind mid-westerners, which continued to make us feel so welcome.

As the night wore on we had the opportunity to further deepen rapport with our tour-mates, and we’re starting to feel like a very strong and friendly traveling community is being built.

Dallas, TX: Dear Dallas, thank you; what a great night. We played a venue called Trees, which had a red velvet curtain that opens when your set starts and closes when it ends. If not for anything but the novelty of it, it was pretty cool. Anyway, I don’t want to write an entire post about drapery, so let’s move on, shall we?

The crowd was wicked tonight, and so was the sound. Everything went off without a hitch, really; think that we’ve settled in to the groove of live performance for this tour now. The journey back to the merch table was a long one, talking with supportive audience members and being the recipient of much back patting, which after a while began to sting, but was much appreciated, none-the-less.

All the other bands killed it, as usual — It’s a pleasure to be able to watch them every night. Starting to get to know the guys in Periphery a little more, and they’re very kind, and welcoming.

After the show we spent the night in a last minute discount site hotel room, and it was awesome; two room suite with six spots to sleep, and of course the always taken for granted home-based luxury of a hot shower. It also had a glass elevator, which wouldn’t slow when you rode it to the top, so it looked like it would crash right through the ceiling.

Can’t wait to see what Texas has in store for us tomorrow.

Houston, TX: Big crowd this night, and the stage had a barricade set up in front of it. Some times this type of set-up is cool, if the barricade’s close enough that you can put your foot on it from a stage of proper height; let’s you lean in real close to the audience. But sometimes, as was the case tonight, the barricade will be set up quite far away from the stage, and it creates a bit of a physical, and energetic disconnect from a crowd. It’s night’s like this that you have to dig deeper in to the music to create more of your own energy to share, and so we did.

When we kicked in we saw that there were a good number of people up front bobbing their heads to the proper rhythms, and when the singing started, so did the sing-alongs — awesome. The crowd had a great roar to it between songs, which helped to give back that bit of connection taken by the distance.

When the set was finished we had the opportunity to partake in some more lengthy and relaxed hang-out time with some of The Safety Fire guys, which was nice to get in. We spent a good amount of our time in a pub called Lucky’s beside the venue, and the longer we stayed, the higher the spirits rose — good times.

Pre-Albuquerque, NM: Today was a desert driving day; we were in the van for well over 14 hours. This is when cabin fever sets in. To illustrate this, here’s a little bonus journal entry from one of our guitarists, Ben Davis. Enjoy.

How to make your van smell like Today I Caught the Plague. By Ben Davis:

01. First grab 6 of your best buds, the hairier the better.
02. Make sure you pack lightly, we don’t want you to have many clean changes of clothes.
03. Perform and sleep in those clothes
04. Don’t wear socks. Your shoes will really seal in all the natural aromas you just can’t appreciate in socks.
05. If you must wear socks, be sure when you take them off to hide them in every hidden crevasse in your tour van. They ferment like a fine wine, and when you’re bored you can seek them out, like easter egg hunting.
06. Forget your shower necessities at home. We wouldn’t want you to catch a shower while we’re not looking.
07. Changing your underwear is bad luck. While on a 30 day tour you don’t want to wish those bad omens on yourself, do ya?
08. Eat every meal in your van. And remember “you don’t make friends with salad”.
09. Only drink gas station coffee, and load it with cream. Its a great way to clear your digestive track.
10. Sleep in your van with all the windows up. Its a great alternative to your regular sauna.
11. McDonalds is a cheap and fast way to sneak in all 4 food groups. Meat, cheese, bread and pickles!
12. Make sure you leave the last little bit of fast food in the wrapper when you throw your garbage away in the van garbage bag.
13. Don’t empty your garbage bag until its completely overflowing.
14. Antiperspirant causes cancer. Fact.
15. Axe body spray smells good…
16. When travelling through hot areas such as texas get as naked as possible.
17. Sonic sells these things called chilly cheese tater tots. Reference #9.
18. Don’t brush your teeth and tell your band lots of secrets.
20. Be creative! one time we found poo, actual poo in our trailer. How’d it get there? We’ll never know.

And did I mention that 14+ hour drive from Houston TX to Albuquerque NM we’re on?
…bored 1 |bôrd|
feeling weary because one is unoccupied or lacks interest in one’s current activity : she got bored with staring out of the window | they would hang around all day, bored stiff.

Check out the song: “From Bulwark to Bane”

Tour Dates (w/ Protest The Hero, Periphery, Jeff Loomis, The Safety Fire):

03/30 – Albuquerque, NM – Sunshine
03/31 – Phoenix, AZ – Club Red
04/01 – Los Angeles, CA – Key Club
04/02 – San Fransisco, CA – Slim’s
04/03 – Portland, OR – The Branx
04/04 – Seattle, WA – Studio Seven
04/06 – Salt Lake City, UT – In The Venue
04/07 – Denver, CO – Summit
04/09 – St. Louis MP – Pops
04/10 – Milwaukee, WI – The Rave II
04/11 – Detroit, MI – Magic Stick
04/12 – Columbus OH – The Outland Ballroom
04/13 – Cleveland, OH – Grog Shop
04/14 – Balitmore, MD – Sonar
04/16 – Atlanta, GA – Masquerade
04/17 – Orlando, FL – The Social
04/18 – Raleigh, NC – Lincoln Theater
04/20 – New York, NY – Gramercy Theater
04/21 – Worcester, MA – Palladium (New England Metal & Hardcore Festival)
04/22 – Philidelphia, PA – Trocadero