The Rock It Till The Wheels Fall Off Summer Tour '04

We just got home from our summer tour and we had a great time, sold alot of merch, met some great people and as the tour name would suggest blew out 2 wheels and had to replace a 3rd. There is nothing like being stranded in the middle of nowhere waiting for AAA to show up and replace a tire for you at 2 in the morning. Here is my tour diary for the past weeks. enjoy.

Thurs. July 22nd - 20 hour drive through TX into El Paso and then into New Mexico. We were stopped by the border patrol but they didn't even ask to look inside the van or trailer. Adam drove the last shift from NM into AZ and since we were the only two awake things got a little loopy. We tore through the Alkali Flatts on a monkey navigated rocket powered blue van. Potato, Earthworm, Carborator.

Friday July 23rd - We arrive in Phoenix around 2pm, there is a mad rush to the showers since we've been in the van for 20 hours and then a mad rush to our bottles of Jager and Crown since we'd been in the van for 20 hours. We were drunk by 4pm and then we made the mistake of buying some non texas beer and were sober by about 5:30 or 6pm. We tried to watch the movie Super Troopers but made it only half way through as non of us had really gotten any sleep the previous day. We wake up to odd sounds around midnight and find that our Super 8 motel doubles as a whore house. At about 2am a pimp lays down some business with his ladies right in front of our room's window, talk about a quality establishment.

Sat July 24th - We wake up around 7am because we can't sleep anymore and treak into the towns of Phoenix and Scottsdale. We find a Dennys and gorge ourselves cheaply and then head out for the Scottsdale Mall. We get a call from Lindsey (who has flown into Phoenix for the show) saying that she left her cell phone in Austin. So we spend about a half hour tracking her down. Once we're all together we find a best buy and buy a copy of Run Ronnie Run, one of the best movies of all time. Then we head out to Drew's house (the singer for Elyasin) On the way the first of 3 tires blow out (this one due to overinflation and the phoenix heat 110 degrees. Drew and his girlfriend Nikki are two of the coolest people that we met on this tour. Nikki works in marketing for Todd McFarlane and their house is littered with badass one of a kind spawn and McFarlane toys. They've also bought lots of fried chicken for us to eat and against my better judgement I eat a few biscuts and some mashed potatos. This is where my 2 days of puking begin. In the midst of all my nausea we head to the show. And The Hero Fails totally fucking rocks the house as does Elyasin (these are the 2 best bands we played with on the whole tour so check them out!) We play our set to a great crowd and then sell lots of merch. They finish the night off with lots of drunken times, while i finish the night off with lots more nausea.

Sunday July 25th - By far the hottest drive of the tour. We pack 6 strong in the van now because Lindsey is catching a ride to our San Diego show. 8 hours through the desert and mountains. In Yuma we watch the temp rise from 106 to 108 in the time it takes us to gas up. Our van is trying to overheat so we roll with the windows down and the sweat pouring. quote of the day goes to Brady referring to a bridge above a canyon " wouldn't it be awesome to piss off that" We arrive in San Diego about 7pm and its is a glorious 74 degrees. We take alot longer than expected to find Lindsey rent a car place and realize that there are more steep grades in the San Diego neighborhoods than in any of our mountain drives. We hook up with good old Chad (you might remember him from Rex Banner, The Stummies, or The Victory Drive and Watch it Burn) He lives right off Texas Street (definantly where I would live if i had to move away from Texas) Then we head out to the show at the California Club. On the way I fianlly buy a small medicine cabinet of various drugs (the beginning of the end of my stomach problems for this tour) We play to a small crowd in San Diego but they seem to really like the tunes as they buy shit loads of merch.

Monday July 26th - We start our day off right by a trip to the In & Out Burger. I don't even eat beef but I did on this day and i'm glad i did because this is the best fast food hamburger any of us has ever eaten. Their menue is nice and simple too you have the choice of Hamburger, Cheesburger, or Double Ham or Cheeseburger. We say goodbye to our friends Lindsey and Jessica (who also flew into So Cal to watch us play San Diego, thanks girls!) and head off to Ocean Beach for some fun in the sun. We all get nicely sunburnt and Brady gets to swim in the ocean for the first time ever. After we dry off we do a little shopping for our girlfriends and then jump into the car for our 8 hour drive into Las Vegas NV. On the way we pass what looks to be LA but really looks more like the top of a giant forrest fire. We stop for gas in Death Valley where the temp is a whopping 106 at night the towns huge temp guage reads all the way up to 130 so we're all thankfull that the sun has already gone down. We drive into the Las Vegas strip at around midnight the van immediatly overheats and while the rest of the guys fix that problem Brady and I start walking down the strip in search of a hotel. After 45 minutes of walking down the coolest street in the USA we finally find a Clarion hotel with rooms available (a big problem at midnight in Vegas on a budget) and check in for our 2 night say in Vegas. After quick shower we all head out to the strip starting at the MGM Grand (where we all lose lots of money) then on to the New York New York (where we all lose a bit more money) and then finally to the Black Jack tabels at the Boardwalk where Lance and I finally make some freakin money. Here we also get to experience the whole comped drinks and some seedy guy trying to sell A bomb some weed. He pulls it out right in the casio in front of the security guys and then trys to whip his dick out to prove he's not a cop. Needless to say we pass on that shady offer and trek back to our hotel room a good 40 minute walk from where we were. The sun rises as we walk towards our room and shut the blinds to sleep til 1pm

Tuesday July 27th - We wake up starving and eat a huge buffet at the Circus Circus casio. Vegas is very hot in the daytime and also very expensive so we spend most of the day suffering because of the CC buffet and staying inside for lack of funds and the heat. Brady and Adam stay in the room for the entire night as Nick Lance and I venture down the other side of the strip that we missed the night before. We see some white tigers, watch a volcano erupt at the Mirage. Check out the plush roman life at Ceaser's Palace and then spend some quality time at the super plush Venition, where they have a mall on the second floor that rivals any high dollar mall i've even seen. where the stores are far to expensive for me and the ceiling looks like a day sky in Italy (or the night depending on how far into the malls tunnels you walk) And if you don't want to walk you can take a gondolier ride through the aqua ducks that run though the mall complete with opera singing gondolier drivers. Nick and I stroll down to the Paris Casino and make back some of our money while Lance goes out in search of food. Several hours later we all end up at the room at the same time. Lance found the most trendy fast food place of the strip Fat Burger and it took him hours to get his food while Nick and I just ate and drank at a gas station. Be sure to ask Nick about how he slept during our last night in Vegas!

Wednesday July 28th - We sleep late (9:30am) and head out of Las Vegas towards Driggs ID. its 104 in Vegas. We drive all day stopping only to gas up and eat in Salt Lake City UT, where the McDonalds has super super size meals complete with giant frys and 42 oz drinks (odd since McD has been talking alot about getting rid of their normal super size meals in light of the new documentaly film about super sizing) at close to midnight about 10 miles away from the ID state line we once again "rock it til the wheels fall off" and blow out yet another tire. We're stranded here till AAA shows up to bail us out. We finally roll into Driggs ID at about 3:46 am where it is a chilly 55 degrees outside. Our hotel rooms have been provided by the Remala family (thank you soo much!) and the doors of our rooms are left unlocked with the keys sitting on the table (Driggs is a very small and trusting town) Our lodge is called the Pines Motel and it feels like grandma's hunting lodge. We all get our own beds and have the best night of sleep on the whole tour (it felt like sleeping over at your grandparents house)

Thursday July 29th - We sleep late (12:30) and then buy our 3rd new tire. Then we find a Burger King to eat lunch where everyone seems to know who we are. We hear lots of "your that band from out of town aren't you" ahh yes our first taste of celebrity status haha. We're playing at a badass drive in overlooking the grand teton mountains. The local news is there to cover the event. The show goes great and we practicly sell out of merch. Big thanks to Kody Remala and his family for all their hospitality. This is the first time i've ever played a show and not broken a sweat! the temp is in the mid 60s and there are sevearl kids in hoodies watching th show. Mr. Remala gives us a lot of water (enough for the rest of the trip) and Jake, who's father owns the drive in gives us lots of beer and a few Oi punk mix tapes for the van. After about an hour's worth of merch sales and autographs we take off towards CO. Several kids told us that "this was the coolest thing to ever happen here" I don't know if we believe that but thank you soo much to the entire town of Driggs ID. Especially to Kody and the rest of the Remala family for having us out!

Friday July 30th - We spend the night somewhere inbetween ID and CO in WY. There was some type of rodeo in town so we had to try 4 motels before finding one with a vacancy. We finally arrive in Golden CO and find the cheapest motel of the whole tour (a total dive of a rats nest perfect for the HELLS RATS) the venue we're playing is called the Buffalo Rose and is located directly in front of the Coors Brewery in the "old west" area of downtown Golden. We play with 2 Nu Metalish bands and their booking agent / promoter tries to keep us from playing the show. after much fighting which included our best argument of "our name is on the sign out front dipshit" we're finally allowed to play and payed out a whopping $ 9. A few kids really liked the set and bought merch and invited us to party with them after the show. However we had made the mistake of eating at Carl's Jr. (the McDonalds of the rest of the world apparently, they're everywhere but TX) and so I was unable to party as my party was mostly with the old bano that night. Lance and I stay in the room as Nick Adam and Brady party till 4:30am with our new found fans/friends from Golden.

Saturday July 31st - We play at the Emos of Ft. Collins CO called the Starlight. Judging by the sticker and graffiti almost every good punk band on the road has played this joint, which rocks. We share the stage with the Varments (a less rocking version of Nirvana) and Try Failing (our new pop punk friends from San Fransico CA) This venue had the best sound of the entire tour and the coolest soundman too. We had somewhere close to 0% crowd response at this show. But the booking girl and the sound guy both enjoyed the set and want us to come back with better bands that sound more like us. We leave the venue at 4pm since it was a day show and head off towards ATX and home sweet home.

Sunday Aug 1st - Our show in Clovis NM was cancelled because the venue closed its doors the day we left for tour. So we drove from 4pm in CO to 1pm in Austin TX. It was a long drive but its good to be home.

Big thank you's go out to all the cool people we met on tour, All of the awesome bands we shared the stage with, We hope you had as much fun at the shows as we did playing them and driving to get to them. Huge thank yous go out to the Kids in Driggs ID especially Kody Remala and the whole Remala family! we'll see you again soon.