ASH - The 7" Singles Box Set
ASH - The 7" Singles Box Set


Well it's been well over a week now since we returned from the 4 Return Of White Rabbit launch shows and it's about time I posted a blog... so I'd best get on with it!

Travel Day: I flew into London for rehearsals from Newark, a bit unusual because I usually fly from JFK, earlier start at 5 am and Port Authority is a pretty dead and erie place that time of the morning, bus out to Newark was quick and nice and empty. On the Continental flight I passed time by watching 3 of the worst movies I've ever had the misfortune to sit through: College Road Trip, The Pink Panther 2, and Paul Blart: Mall Cop. Continental you gotta upgrade your movie selection! What a trio of torture, although I did laugh at parts of Martin Lawrence being an over protective father in College Road Trip, I do hope I'm never that bad. Fast forward a few hours and I was back in the cosy surroundings of the Hoxton with increasingly uncomfortable flu-like symptoms kicking in. After an early night I was hoping I'd be able to brush it off easily.

College Road Trip: Painful

Rehearsals: Next morning and it was first day of rehearsals. We got ourselves reacquainted with all our gear after 8 months of it being locked up in storage and it was good to welcome Rick's wee bro Mike into the fold. Flea was back onboard as guitar tech, Lance tour managing / sound and Tom (T3) on the lights. The gang was assembled and we got stuck into 2 days of pretty disciplined rehearsing and working out the new songs. Can you believe we hadn't ever played ROWR together until after it was released, that's the nature of building songs in the computer! The first night together involved going for a curry, realizing I was wrongly served lamb once I was chewing it, GROSS!, getting carry outs and drinking in Ricks room until the wee hours. The second night after we packed up, Tim and I went to Wagamama and then got on the bus for a back lounge ipod DJ session. I was good being back on a sleeper bus with everyone as we headed towards Brighton. After rehearsing solidly most of the pre-tour anxiety had calmed down and everyone was looking forward to the first shows after such a long break.

Brighton: I woke up the morning of the show barely able to breathe. My throat felt closed over and red raw, I was a bit hungover and I hadn't stashed any water so I was in a bad predicament. I got out of my overheating bunk and search for water, the bus was dry. Aqua, Aqua, I needed to do something about this. I got off the bus and realized we were parked out side the venue, (Concorde 2) I'd been here a few years ago to see The Cooper Temple Clause play one of their final shows, it's a pretty cool club. Some sort of student audio / rock school was going on so the venue was out of bounds for a while. Nobody else had surfaced yet so I set off into town on a long walk along the Brighton shore to find sustenance materials, water, flu pills, allergy pills, lucozade, something to eat to get this shell of a human functional. After wandering around Brighton like a zombie with uncontrollable sneezing convulsions I gathered my loot and headed back to the bus to digress and digest, load up on pills and try to kill the virus which was kicking the shit out of me.

After a bit of sleep I re-awoke to find the stage was mostly all set and ready for soundcheck. We played through the new material and the guys from Panama Kings arrived. It was great to have those guys do the shows, we all love them and hopefully they'll go on to do great things. I meet with a friend of mine for dinner in town and then it was back down to the Concorde 2 for show time. Support slots are never easy but the Panama Kings won over the Brighton crowd and then it was our turn.

Going on stage to some Blade Runner music was cool and we kicked the show off with Walking Barefoot for the first time ever. After a few songs to settle and the first new song Space Shot went down well our nerves were completely gone and we could relax and enjoy playing again. We also finished the main set with a super long version of ROWR which people seemed to love. The first show in 8 months was judged to be a success and the crowd all seemed to head home happy. Afterwards we all got pretty drunk and the rider didn't last long. We were then quite pleased with ourselves acquiring an extra slab of Red Stripes from inside the venue after the promoter had settled and left. It's amazing what magic wands can do... where there's a will there's a way! JediSteve got on the bus and I seem to remember a rather long bus session listening to all the new Ash material along with much back patting.

 Brighton Rocks by Samantha Emery 

Added on 19/06/2009 by dmh