The Sword tour – Part 33 and 1/3

Wherein our heroes do merrily encounter the proletariat of the industrial hubs of Manchester and London.

Right – where was I? Oh yes – we had just finished playing in Glasgow and I had successfully quelled the wild tempest that was churning ‘below deck’. Up and at them with the lark (as usual) we managed to locate a Wetherspoons in Glasgow city centre, gorged ourselves on a variety of fried produce and set off for Manchester. Arriving at the venue only a short while before soundcheck, a near-manic search ensued around the environs of the university to try and locate the necessary ingredients of a White Russian, a search that proved fruitless as apparently nowhere in the North-West sells Kahlua. Undeterred, a substitute was purchased in the form of Tia Maria and once we’d knocked soundcheck on the head a series of deliciously milky cocktails were rendered, the imbibing of which caused me to feel only just the right side of ‘mindless’ when we hit the stage. My abiding memory of the gig was Dougie, mid-song, bending down by his amp, eyes darting about and generally looking a little confused. Greyum, ever alert to potential on-stage problems beckoned Dougie over, assuming that there was a problem with his equipment or sound.

“What’s the matter, Doug?” enquired our erstwhile roadwarrior. Dougie leant over, still looking a bit unsure.

“I don’t know but…has someone farted?” enquired Dougie.

Aside from potential onstage ‘boff-whiffs’ the gig was lovely and we all retired to the dressing room to continue the demolition of several White Russians. My memory now becomes a little bit hazy but I’m fairly certain we were particularly affable and when the night was over we set off to our friend Steve’s house to stay the night. Again my memory is a little unreliable but I do recall needing a piss more than I have ever needed one in my entire life on the way there. Whilst at Steve’s I set about lapsing into unconsciousness with the aid of some hoppy ale that had found its way into my hand and Doug and Atko commenced a game of football in Steve’s back garden in the dark at 2am. Whilst I did not see it I am reliably informed that Dougie ended up heading a watering can by mistake at one point, a development that had repercussions only felt the next morning when he woke up complaining of a ‘banging head’ and had to be reminded of his previous night’s sporting exertions.

The following day we got up and had breakfast while watching a particularly bizarre live concert of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young on video, wherein Stephen Stills sang ‘Our House’ with a newborn baby clutched to his bosom. They did things differently in 1973. Following an obligatory viewing of ‘UFO Live 1980’ (which I think I’ve watched every time I’ve been to Steve’s) we set off for the big smoke and the final date of the tour. Arriving at the venue it took all of about 5 minutes before we were in trouble with security again, this time for leaving some ‘incriminating’ materials lying around the dressing room but undeterred we located some more White Russian materials and set about well and truly taking the edge off before showtime. The gig was a lot of fun again and before long it was all over and we were packing up and loading out. Fortunately I had decided that a wall had been reached earlier on in the evening and switched from White Russians to Dr Pepper just as I was approaching the stage of not being able to string a sentence together – I relay this fact if only because it meant that when I got to the after-party I was just about compos mentis enough to enjoy myself. Which I did, thank you for asking.  Once the party was over it was time to get on the road again – or so we thought. Sadly, although very kindly, the staff at the Garage decided that we couldn’t go without having a final drink, at which point a young lady emerged with two gigantic bottles of liquid, one clear the other dark brown. We were informed that these bottles contained ‘Liam Gallagher’s Tequila’, one being your standard Mexican tipple and the other ‘coffee tequila’. Do not ask me what the connection was with Liam Gallagher nor indeed why the Garage should have been in possession of quite so much of the stuff. However, never one not to try something at least once I plumped for the coffee tequila. One should bear in mind that at this point it was 3am and we had to be at the Eurotunnel at 11am the next day. Oh well, I thought, fortune favours the brave.

Can I just say that if anybody has the opportunity of tasting ‘Liam Gallagher’s coffee tequila’ (not a euphemism) they should without hesitation turn the offer down politely and run as quickly as possible in the opposite direction. My mouth exploded with unrestrained waves of saliva as soon as I got the stuff down and it took every last atom of my being not to be sick all over Adam our merch guy. I think Atko may well have been sick, and possibly even Dougie too. In the words of Gwen Stefani – that shit is bananas. And bananas I mean ‘fucking disgusting’.

So anyway, having given our guts a good rinsing we were off to the Travelodge for about 25 minutes sleep before we had to be up and out to get the Eurotunnel across to Holland. Sadly, London was to be our last date with The Sword as the remaining gigs in Holland were our own headline shows. However I can confirm that The Sword are without exception all bloody lovely people and a completely terrific band – but you don’t need me to tell you that. Even taking into account near-life-threatening levels of diarrhoea and the unusual tour affliction of ‘random hard-ons’ we had a really good time and met some splendid people.

However the story does not end there!  The following day we were in Holland, where you may have heard they have a rather more liberal approach to both drugs, pornography and alcohol percentages. So stay tuned for more salacious tales of rum, sodomy and the lash in the next exciting instalment – ‘The Gentlemans Pistols tour – Vol 4’.



Published in: on June 25, 2011 at 2:32 pm  Leave a Comment  

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