More notes from the tour by Dave Pybus, COF’s bassist… Wed 17th Nov – Kansas City, Beumont Music Hall On the road again… last time we played Kansas was an off-date for Ozzfest 2003, the night before Martin’s birthday. He nearly ended up dead that night. Not this time though, as it’s Paul’s birthday today. He got away lightly compared. Me and James got up at 4am to visit our first Wal-mart since we arrived and bought him a huge chocolate cake (… and me a football, yay) etc. Was kinda surreal, us being the only two people in the whole place at that god awful time. Dawn of the dead creepy. So… later, we gave him the cake that Sarah kindly decorated (and got the numbers mixed up, reading 43), onstage and we played a tight set to a great crowd. I came down with a cold today and had Sharlee from Arch Enemy feed me whiskey ’til the early hours. Made me feel a little better but still didn’t sleep much. Himsa and the Bleeding Through guys tried to hijack me and Martin on to their bus for the night drive to Dallas. I managed to escape with my cold at the last minute. Martin wasn’t that lucky. Thu 18th Nov – Dallas, Gypsy Ballroom Never played here before. Didn’t do much today as we had a late sound check. Was nice to have a hot shower. All the usual hurry up and wait, get ready to do nothing fast bullshit. Didn’t really have the energy to fight it either. Just floated along. Watched Himsa from out front for the first time. Loud crowd tonight with a smallish stage. Had a few problems but nothing like last night, when my bass cabinet just went off for the last song. Ploughed through it in the heat. Got quite a few bras as the girls here in Dallas don’t seem to mind not wearing them. Chilled after the show with Brandon (Bleeding Through) and Johnny (Himsa) while watching some homeless guy moonwalk for Scott’s birthday. Gotta say, these two guys are like the most pleasurable frontmen I have encountered in my whole time in the music biz… Ever! We talked about the hardships of life on the road and how, over the years, things slowly change. Starting out in vans, near death experiences, playing small shitty venues to just a handful of people, just enough money for fuel to get to the next show… FOR YEARS! I remember the week before I started session for COF, back in May 2001. I was sleeping on the van floor for ten days straight on tour with Orange Goblin. This was quite common for me back then. These days we command two buses and a great crew. It’s easy now to forget those times. But in a way, it doesn’t get easier. It just means you can stay on the road for longer periods of time and put more energy into the show. It’s usually the downtime that bores you to death now. Fri 19th Nov – New Orleans, House Of Blues The venue where we first played with Killswitch Engage, Shadows Fall and Sworn Enemy at the start of the Ozzfest tour. Our good friend Sammy Duet (Ex-Acid Bath/Goatwhore) came down early and took me and Sarah out for dinner and to show us around some cool stores in the New Orleans french quarter. Had to let him leave us early due to a hangover. Kinda funny, when we arrived there was a swingers convention going on next door to the venue and groups of middle aged drunk women with large cleavages kept trying to get on the bus. This show was a bit of a debacle. Heads down for most of it. Quite a few bra’s on stage though. After show was better. Met up with our friends again and went out. Bourbon Street was nuts! Our super hero Damien Storm showed up when we returned to the bus at 3 am. The drive to Austin was broken up by our bus being sideswiped by a truck and (only) losing it’s wing mirror. Close. Are we destined to die out here? Sat 20th Nov – Austin, Back Room Last time we were here it was over 100 degrees inside the club. Worse news was, it was like 110 OUTSIDE, so there was absolutely no escape. Today was a little better. Same club heat, probably the hottest show so far on this tour, but cooler outside, thankfully. Bit tired from the last three shows but it’s a packed house tonight and we managed to get it together for a great show. It’s way too small for any kind of production so it’s down to us performing good. Not really any technical problems tonight which helps us immensely and we collect a tour high seven bra’s in the process. It was Derek, the drummer from Bleeding Through’s birthday and a girl I met earlier turned out to be a lap dancer so he got a nice present. My good friend Lally showed up too. Tomorrow is a much needed day off. The show days are pretty physical and intense. You don’t seem to notice how run down you get until you actually stop and get a day room to shower and have a proper hot meal. Even the days off fly by. Mon 22nd Nov – Denver, Ogden Theatre Halfway point of the tour already. Played here before, although last time in Denver was with Type O Negative at the Fillmore down the street, a venue I seem to have no recollection of. Signing session at the store next door to the theatre after sound check. The queue didn’t seem to ever get any shorter but I only missed Himsa’s first song. Me and Martin went in the crowd at the front and we later joined by Marta. No one bothered us, except singer Johnny. He seemed happy to see us. Quickly went out for Chinese food and caught some of Bleeding Through and A.E. on our return. Tonight was pretty packed and when we hit the stage the crowd seemed a little laid back. Maybe tired? The sound onstage is always weird here, like quiet, so it makes us feel a little isolated and the audience at a distance. If they don’t make a lot of noise we feel lonely. On top of that, not a single bra hit stage! But it wasn’t bad… far from it. We had a little drink afterwards with Chris from A.E. as it’s his birthday tomorrow and we won’t see them until the day after as we will drive straight to Tempe.