From March 10th to March 25th, Frank is visiting the good old US of A. First a 6 day trip to Portland, to visit ZXZW artist Khris Soden. After that, Frank is visiting the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas. He will try and write a blogpost a day on his whereabouts.
Austin once again. Haven’t visited it since I played here with my band 4 years ago, but kept in touch with the guys from a band called Black Earth. Dave, the bassplayer, hooked me up with sleepingplaces at his place. Me, Bartman (Peter Pan Speedrock) and his girlfriend Angelique are staying at Dave’s place for the week. He has a nice place in the suburbs of Austin, together with his wife Meagan, and 2 dogs and a cat. I got a room of my own, again. How cool!
Met Ving Ra (his name is composed of his two idols, Lee Ving (Fear) and Sun Ra), the singer of Black Earth. Haven’t seen him in four years to. He came over on the night we arrived. We had some really good fajitas from the BBQ, and it was nice to catch up with everybody. Ving had the coolest stories about this strip-joint he’s working now, and this stripper he dates. Went to bed, to catch up on my sleep, pretty early though. There were some hard times ahead of me in Austin!
On tuesday, the festival hasn’t officially started yet, we decided to go down to the city to have something to eat, and shop a bit. Dave dropped us off at Polvo’s, a place right next to the house he used to live downtown, where we all stayed four years ago. Cool to see the place again, great memories. Too bad the sold it and changed it completely. Anyways, we had some great Mexican food at Polvos. Bart had a steak half the size of the state of Texas. Man, people can eat here! We also had some nice margaritas. Holidays had just begon!
We walked to South Congress, one of the major roads that go into the city, and divides the city in the East and Wester part. It goes all the way down to the Congress building. It really gives you a nice view on the city. On Congress, there are all sorts of cool vintage clothing stores, oddities, some bars, tatoo parlors, etc. We did some shopping, and split up for a while, to go our own ways. I took a cab downtown, walked aroud a bit more, but there was not much more to find. Well, except for hundreds of annoying ” pretend to be” Irish people, wearing green stuff. It was also St. Patricks day, and people were already drinking like there was no tomorrow.
After a walk in the downtown area, we met up at the Headhunters bar, owned by notorous louthmouth Loony, who was, ofcourse, louthmouthing us all the time. We played at the place four years ago, and it was a nice return. Cool thing is, that Billy Milano (S.O.D., M.O.D.) works there too. Him and Loony weere shouting to eachother the whole time we were there, guess they had to keep up an image. It was pretty entertaining though. We sat there for an hour or so, and then the guys from Madball walked in for a beer. They were playing in Red7 tonight. We might go. Angelique decided to go outside for a smoke at one point, taking her beer with her. Well, it’s not a capitol crime in Texas, but they sure treat you that way. If you take a beer outside, I think they will probably shoot you or something. It is illegal to drink outside, and they are really, really uptight about it. Anyways, We had a few more drinks (inside), saw a crappy punkband, and Dave came to pick us up, to go back to the house, change, pick up Meagan, and go back into the city.
We returned to the downtown area and went to Jackalopes on 6th street, to have burgers and some beers. Jackalopes was a really big place with a gigantic patio, with two big trees and a fire in it. It looked really cool and dark. The played the cooles music, from the Misfits to the Dicks. It was really crowded. Imagine having a place like this at home. Would be awesome! After the burgers we went to Red River again, where we got to the Red Eyed Fly, the venue where Honky was scheduled. We played there 4 years ago with The Spades, it was cool to see it again. Today was a trip down memory lane anyways. Honky got on at 1 pm. and before that, nothing much was playing wich was worth wasting my ears on. We had a chat with Sean, the former drummer of Black Earth. Cool dude, haven’t seen or spoken to him in years too.
After crappy band #3, Bart, Angelique and me decided to walk around the corner to see Madball. They played at the outside stage of Red7, and there were about 400 people there, waiting for them. They kicked ass live. Freddy Madball truly is one of the hardest dudes around. They played a lot of classics, and the place turned into a frenzy. Stagediving, singalongs, moshing, but in a really cool way. Shit was on!
After Madball, we returned to the Red Eyed FLy, where Honky was about to get on. Honky is the heavy rock trio with Jeff Pinkus of the Butthole Surfers (or Poepgatse Plankzeilers, as we like to call m in Holland) in it. Don’t know who the other 2 members were, but the sure as hell rocked. That singer / guitarist was one of the funniest and best guitarists I have seen in years. He fucking ripped. He should be world famous, but I heard his claim to fame is being the roady of Down nowadays. That probably explained why Pepper Keenan (guitarist of Down, Corrosion of Conformity) was standing in front of me. He got up the stage and sang along with the last song. Pretty cool to see him in the wild, because the last time I saw him during the Roadburn festival, he was walking around with a bodyguard….. damn Americans….
After the Honky show, we decided to go home. We met some of the guys in Moistboys by the way, a project with members of Kyuss and Ween. Nice dudes, they are playing on thursday, so we will most definitally check that out. Dave just about knows everybody in town, so that’s pretty cool. We went home to sleep. 4 more days of mayhem ahead of us!