Into Glory Ride
„London calling…and we´re „heeding the call“! That´s exactly what it is, folks, we´re prepared to get on a journey not only to the capital of Britain but a few meters away of the birthplace of heavy metal a day later. Is this awesome??? Yes, it motherfucking IS!!! And this feeling of pure happiness is what keeps us alive and kicking on this journey across Belgium and France which seems to take 20 days time. As you can imagine, half past one in the night not being shortly after lunch break. When we finally arrive at the train station in Calais after 37 weeks time looking forward to have a half-an-hour break, we get the chance to close our eyes briefly and give Bernie some time to prepare for left-hand-driving. There will definitely be light at the end of the tunnel and that´s where the front-seat passenger drives. But, as always, no problem for us guys keeping an eye in every direction, even the city of London is no match for Bernie and so we happily arrive at our hostel. Entering our broom closet…no…room (remember the Playmobil castle? Approximately the same size) we immediately make our beds and get ready to invade the city for sightseeing. We have one day and a half which is not really much to see all the sights (including each and every comic book store) which is why we literally run across the city. However, the main sight is located at the Staples Market in Camden and includes a place called Hones Burgers. Now, really, if you ever get to London, fuck Tower Bridge and all this pussy stuff, blaze a direct trail to this market and get a taste of the burger there!!!
Shortly before nightfall we take the tube to the heart of the city and enter a metal place called Crowbar, before it´s time to get back to the hostel which is crowded by Portuguese beauties. Taking a look at a suitcase in our room, which seems to belong to one of the South European beauties gives us hope and a good night kiss.
Feeling lucky just once…that´s the first thought coming into mind when we open our eyes the next morning. Eagerly, we take a look to find out which one of those Portuguese girls share a room with us. Well, the only thing we see is a female, far beyond our age with a couple of tattoos. Not to mention the GI haircut! Seems like the Portugueses being located in different rooms, which really is too bad! But she´s really nice, this elderly Italian dame, that´s for sure. Even if she´s keen enough to tell me I snore. What a lie!!! (she “offered” to kill Meyer in his sleep if he snores again that much, sic! – Bernie)
Hail To England
After a quick breakfast (in my case the good morning cigarette) the city calls again. There´s some locations left such as the famous Rock´n´Roll walk leading us to legendary locations, some more comic stores (a note: we’ve been to an unbelievable amount of TWO comic stores, TWO, just for the record – Bernie) and the HMV. After another short break at the Camden Market it´s time to pick up our car which is parked in a public garage and make our way to the venue. There´s some work to do tonight, you know! This location is a real cozy pub with a rather big room where the gig is going to be taking place a few hours later. We get in contact with the other bands, such as KAMBRIUM, a band being located in Germany as well and playing with us the Camden show and the Bromsgrove gig the next day.
I´m really eager to see ANIHILATED on stage and I am impressed by a cool KREMATED show. Eventually we enter the stage to show the English the real German thrash hammer. It´s fun as hell and everything works for us and the crowd. Our first UK gig appears to be a real success. It should come even better, but that´s something we couldn´t know yet. Coming to the end of the set I wonder why we don´t play the next gigs within the crowd completely.
Nice to see that all the little shops are open all night. When we leave the stage and start making our way back to the hostel, all we need is some beer for the way home. Tired and a little bit proud we lay our cadavers down knowing that the night would be short. We have to get up early and there´ll be a 2 hour ride down to Bromsgrove. It´s a hard job being in a band, trust me!
Into The Void
Leaving sunny London we finally get to know the real English weather. It´s raining cats and dogs and we are happy to know the Beermageddon to be an indoor show. The venue is a cozy country club surrounded by a lawn where the snack booths are located. Inside the club there´s a huge stage with a crazy crowd in front of it having fun and cheering the bands, no matter if newcomers or well-known heroes (such as LAWNMOWER DETH later in the evening). Thus, it´s a pleasure for us standing upon the stage and playing our asses off. Again, everything works perfectly with a crowd running wild…absolutely awesome! And with our groove track „This One Step“, we have something to make our good friend Valkyrie Lawson coming from the States to see our show very happy. Of course, the end of the show ends up within the crowd, where we meet a couple of new fans. Later on we realise that not only our gig was a real success; the guys seize everything they can at the merch table and we sell literally tons of stuff. Definitely insane!!!
A few hours later with some cool gigs (especially LAWNMOWER DETH), it was time to say good-bye and to wait for the taxi to give us a ride to the hotel. Standing in the cold for about 20 minutes, I had an idea: waiting for a bus or a train I just have to light a cigarette. And you can be sure, after a few seconds you can see the headlights coming. Works every time, even with English taxi drivers!!! I´m so happy to see my bed arriving in my hotel room and I´m even happier to think of the ride the next day. At least we have a person less hence more space, since Tobi left for his holidays in Wales after the gig. Thank you, little drummer boy!!!
The ride back home appears to be the same as the ride to England, just vice-versa, actually. Just add 2 extra hours and left-hand-driving is replaced by driving on the right side (literally haha). And about 11 hours later (feels like three and a half weeks) finally our rehearsal room appears out of nowhere. This has to be the feeling when you have a near-death experience with this famous light at the end of the tunnel and you know to be at home at last! I think I can speak for each and everyone of us saying it was a hard trip but worth EVERYTHING. We´ll be back if you let us, that´s a promise!!!
The play list:
ANNIHILATOR – Alice in Hell
GRAVE DIGGER – Tunes of War
LEGION OF THE DAMNED – Sons of the Jackal
KREATOR – Phantom Antichrist
PRIMAL FEAR – Black Sun
BLACK SABBATH – Tyr
ANIHILATED – Scorched Earth Policy
MOTÖRHEAD – Inferno
BRUCE DICKINSON – The Chemical Wedding
ONSLAUGHT – Killing Peace
IRON MAIDEN – Powerslave
JUDAS PRIEST – Live 98 Meltdown
DESTRUCTION – Thrash Anthems
JAG PANZER – Fourth Judgement
WIZARD – Head of the Deceiver
CRAZY LIXX – New Religion
HALFORD – Resurrection
THE CRIMSON GHOSTS – Leaving the Tomb