DAY 15 – 16… Bologna & Treviso, Italy!
The next two days saw us head back up north to play Bologna and Treviso. They were both amazing shows and everyone we met afterwards was lovely, like all the other shows here. The sun was baking hot these two days, Decade were playing footy in the car park where the bus and vans were all parked, and the atmosphere was all really positive. Up until now we’d been playing in a different country every single night, so it had been really nice to just stay in the one country for a few days. We had a day off coming up as well, and because the distance to the show afterwards wasn’t too bad we were able to spend the day in Venice.
DAY 17… Day off in Venice!
Before we left for tour we planned to make the most of this particular day off, it was the only day on the whole EU run where we could actually have a day off, the two previous days off were both used as travel days because of the distance. We woke up early and got a taxi into Venice. It was just over 10 years since I was in Venice for the first time and it was good to be back. We hit up all the touristy spots and crossed a bridge where you could see the city open out before heading to the docks where all the Gondolas were.
Walking around is great anyway, but I think if you really want to see Venice you need to see it from the water. Our Gondola ride was about 45 minutes long and as soon as you get in you suddenly notice how quiet it is! You get so used to the noise of thousands of people all close together walking through the little lanes that you don’t notice the noise until it’s not there. It was really nice to see the City from this angle, seeing how old all the buildings are close up and realising that actually… these are just people’s homes! I couldn’t help but think how annoying it must be to have thousands of people just walking outside your house taking pictures, but I guess they’re used to it now.
After the ride was done, we went back to the square and had hands down the most expensive glass of orange juice ever!! Seriously… combined we could have had a three-course meal.
Back at the hotel that night we had room service and watched a movie. The next morning we were driving up to Switzerland.
DAY 18… Pratteln, Switzerland!
The drive up to Pratteln from Italy is incredible… I’m not going to lie. Driving through the Alps was one of the journeys I spoke about earlier that I was looking forward to, and it didn’t disappoint at all. Driving through listening to music was relaxing; we then came to probably the most surreal location I’ve ever seen, we came out one side of the Alps to see this lake open up. Now we saw some impressive lakes in Scandinavia, but this was different somehow. The water was crystal clear and so still, and you had mountains on either side and out in the distance you could only just make out. At the start of tour Sean and I joked about the fact that we had brought our swimming shorts… it was destiny that we came across this place, it was the perfect swimming spot. Until the “NO SWIMMING” sign was pointed out! Typical. I would love to own one of the houses that were just sitting at the foot of the mountains.
We stayed here for a little while; I could have stayed all day to be honest, a little piece of heaven.
Once we got to the venue we had someone waiting outside with a present of chocolate for us… she was awesome. THANK YOU!! We then found out that Counterfeit’s bus had broken down three times on the way and they were stuck near the border. Not good! They were due to get to the show after the doors had opened, which meant the show couldn’t really be set up. Decade’s drummer Dan and myself had been using my kit for the whole tour and it was decided we would set the stage up with my kit up on the riser, and the two band’s gear making up the rest of the stage. Normally we set up in front of Counterfeit’s gear, but this way if they were any later they could potentially use all of ours. Dan and I joked about finally being up on the riser tonight!
DAY 19… Wiesbaden, Germany!
Three shows left of the European run before we needed to head home for the UK shows and we were back in Germany playing at Schlachthof in Wiesbaden. Once again we had a lovely person waiting in the line with more food for us! She had made us Vegan cakes!! Amazing!! They went very, very quickly… so good.
I walked into the venue with the boys and met the promoter who showed us around and into our dressing rooms. This venue was pretty damn big… I remember walking side stage and out into the front and getting so pumped for the night ahead.
I’m pretty sure it was the biggest room on the tour along with Alactraz in Milan. I said to Katy that she’s going to look like a little dot on the stage tonight!
After the show we were hanging out at the merch desk, meeting as many people as we could before the security moved them on. What’s really nice at this point, as we were coming to the end of the run, was seeing so many faces again and again coming out to the shows. They love music and make so much effort to go and watch bands; it’s amazing.
DAY 20… Amsterdam, Netherlands!
Off we went to Amsterdam. My parents were flying in from London for the show and actually got there quite a long time before us. I was looking forward to seeing them and to play that night, they never miss a big show or tour. They’ve always been really supportive, ever since I started playing 17 years ago. They love it. It’s funny… put me in front of as many people as you like, it doesn’t bother me. Put my mum and dad in the crowd, suddenly the pressure is on.
It had been 3 weeks since we left England to start this tour and it had flown by. I remember sitting in the dressing room with the guys and the boys in Decade talking about the tour and previous tours, and the question of what’s been your worst and best tour came up. Everyone agreed that this was the best. The people we shared it with, the crowds, the travelling… everything made it what it was.
When we got to the hotel we were staying in for the night I walked into the room and could only laugh at what I saw. Jack walked in just after me, we were sharing that night, and he didn’t think it was ideal either. The only way I can describe the bathroom is if you imagine a fully functioning bathroom… shower, toilet and sink, but with no walls whatsoever! In this hotel room you had two beds with a shower directly next to it. Now, when I say directly next to it, I’m talking about bedside table territory! Anyway… it happened. We move on HAHA!
DAY 21… Cologne, Germany!
The day had come. It was the final day of the European tour with Counterfeit and Decade; an amazing, but at the same time sad day. As I mentioned at the beginning of this blog I was excited the tour was finishing in Germany, a place that made us feel at home every single night we were there. I already knew this show was going to be the best way to finish this run. Was I wrong? Absolutely not!! We had an amazing show that night. I didn’t want it to end. We have a point half way through our set where the lights dim and Katy makes everyone get their phones out and put the torches on… it really is such a cool thing to look at when up on stage. I always knew when there were people who had been before on the tour because they did it before we even got to that point, let alone ask them. They got to know our show that well, I love it!
Before the doors opened we all had dinner together over in catering. It was potentially the last time everyone would be in a room together just chilling, having a laugh.
Decade came up with the idea of doing something during Counterfeit’s set. They went out to a local shop and bought a whole load of toilet rolls. During their encore we were going to teepee the stage and venue. Behind the stage you can get up onto the stage from both sides. Team Tigress were going enter from stage left and team Decade were taking position over on stage right… we were waiting for the right moment in ‘Enough’ to cause chaos! Jamie (Counterfeit frontman) always climbs up somewhere in the venue or hangs from the top of somewhere. Watching their set every night never got boring. When I first saw him climbing over the crowd and hanging from the balcony I thought, “this guy is crazy!” The dude has so much charisma though, it’s infectious.
The moment came and the stage invasion happened! What a way to finish the tour. All three bands on stage together for the last notes played. A moment when looking back I’ll never forget.