22/04 Novi Sad and oh we're DJs now lol
After 2-3 hours of not so easy driving through country roads, which were at least sometimes picturesque we manage to reach the Romanian - Serbian border, where we spend the next 30 minutes as the 'super kontrola' is convinced we have drugs. They bring the selfie-stick and check our car big time. At this point the trunk is stacked with vinyls, both from the Ugly & Proud Distro that Niki's bringing on the tour and from our own hunts. They ask him if he's a DJ, he says he's not ahaha. Anyhow, after a half an hour they let us go and after maybe one hour and something we reach Novi Sad. After getting lost for a bit we manage to find the place where we're supposed to find Boyan from Rebuild Collective. He's at work, but he's managed to find us both a sleeping place and a gig that we can join. So we briefly meet him and then head to Culture Exchange, a biker's place, with a cool library, nice coffee and the bartender greets us with Fall of Efrafa blasting from the speakers. After a cup of coffee we go for a walk around the city with Goran, who used to play in Furtive Forest with Boyan back in the day. Around 8 we're back at the place which is slowly getting crowded (it's not too big anyhow). There's a guy playing an acoustic set. He mostly does covers, sometimes girls join him 'on stage' and sing with him. People are sitting on tables, clapping and moving their lips as if singing. I wonder if they are all schoolmates. Me and Vasilis are wondering what should we do tonight because our stuff will probably piss on each and every party mood. We decide to do a short DJ set. We have a bit over an hour before the place is closed so we play our current favorite tracks jumping from IDM to Industrial and whatnot. Some people leave, others come and say they're a bit sad we didn't really do our live set. Still, we're happy how this all turned out still it seems we'll have a reason to come back.
A bit after 12 pm we grab something to eat and go to sleep in Crna Ovca, Rebuild Collective's DIY heaven, full of vinyls, zines, films on vhs and comic books. The Greek people ravage the place and buy a tons of records, while me, Niki, Goran and Boyan chat about whatever. Around 1 we call it a day and cool thing is no need to hurry tomorrow.
|On our way to the Novi Sad fortress|
23/04 Belgrade, but falafel first
Our next actual show is in Belgrade. It's actually the pre-final gig of this tour. However, the ride from Novi Sad to Belgrade is pretty fast so we go on another walk in Novi Sad. We go to the fortress and it's nice, but even better is when we sit in Ananda, an awesome vegan place in the city center where we get served great stuff. The falafel in this place are out of this world. I will be bold here and say they are as good as those in Poznan... Okay I did it and it's true. Since Novi Sad is far closer to Sofia I guess that's my new Poznan. After we pick our stuff we go to Culture Exchange for a quick coke, because that's what you drink after falafel and you know that. About 4 pm we're already on the road and Belgrade here we come.
We easily find the spot and it's awesome. A building with only walls in the most hipster area of the Belgrade city center. Right next to the river. After some pizza, few issues with the PA we're good to go, just waiting for some people. And quite many of them actually show up. It seems Srdjan and Sofija have managed to do some great work on this event and we manage to play in front of a pretty big crowd, actually one of the biggest for this tour. It would have been cool if the people would shut up for a bit but meh, whatever. I really dig the sets of both Raven and Lomz, especially Lomz I'd like to hear in a bigger venue with a longer performance since we were all kind of shortening our sets to fit the curfew and not piss of the police (and the neighbors, who actually all came to bitch about how loud our show was). After the show we chat with some cool people for a bit and then decide to head to Sofia right away. The trip is pretty smooth. We don't stop, just blast Rado Shisharkata and some mega folk hits, which Vassilis and Philip already know the lyrics of and here we're at home for the first time in two weeks. Now some sleep so we can go to Plovdiv tomorrow and finish this tour.
Oh yes, the kittens are bigger and cuter, I don't want to give them to anybody. THEY ARE MINE.
|The Belgrade venue!|
|Surprise harsh noise set from Srdjan.|
24/04 Plovdiv, the grande finale of this tour
Shower, breakfast, fun times at the change burreau, because Vasilis is a financial guru and we're already on our way to Plovdiv. We get there around 6 pm and the doors are already open the sound is set. We quickly plug-in, soundcheck I leave a playlist of hipster music and go to grab a bite. Me and Niki get a huge pizza because after Novi Sad and Poznan the thing that they call falafel in Plovdiv will be simply embarassing. We sit in the park, eat, feed the cats, we do the crust-punk thing. Around 8 pm we're in Kosmos again, which is probably in the Top 5 venues of the tour. I meet some friends, some of whom have travelled from Sofia for the show and around 8:45 I start playing. There are quite some people, but I'm not really sure most of them know what this show is all about - deep dark music and obscure visuals. Anyhow for both our sets there are people hanging out and watching / listening so it's a pretty nice evening. Petko (nemko-fi from Melformator) does GREAT job with the live visuals and I can't wait to collaborate with him again. After the show we pack and head straight to Sofia. I'm not sure any of us is realizing our 15-day-long tour has just come to an end. Yes, it might feel okay now, but I'm sure I'll have to face the sad truth when next Monday, instead of going into the car to head to another city I'll have to take the tram and spend the next 9 hours writing.
To sum things up.
5500+ kilomtres, 15 days, 15 cities, 14 shows, great food, great people, awesome promoters everywhere. Definitely worth it... as touring in general. Thanks to everybody who booked us, hosted us in their house, cooked us food, supported us by getting some merch. Huge ups to Niki for driving relentlessly, to Philip for helping us get proper sound everywhere, to Vasilis for enduring this tour despite everything and to me for working on this shit for the past 5 months.