Tony MacAlpine European Tour Part 17: Becalmed In Spain

We played March 15 at Ritmo & Compas in Madrid, March 16 at Stereo in Murcia, and March 17 at Sala Fanatic in Seville. While the Coop turned in excellent performances for these three shows, the days were long and boring, stuck inside a parked bus.

We played March 15 at Ritmo & Compas in Madrid, March 16 at Stereo in Murcia, and March 17 at Sala Fanatic in Seville. While the Coop turned in excellent performances for these three shows, the days were long and boring, stuck inside a parked bus.

March 15-17, 2012
Madrid, Murcia, and Seville, Spain

After Barcelona we made our way to Madrid. The promoter for Spanish run, while doing an OK job of promoting, is not so great on the details of our day-to-day existence. The club owner didn’t block out the parking, so we had to back down the street, drop the trailer, and then park a half-mile away. We spent the rest of the day on the bus, as there was nothing nearby.

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Once in the club, things went pretty much as usual: we set up quick, and then sit around and wait on the tour manager/FOH guy to get around to soundcheck. To be fair, the PAs in these Spanish clubs are a little janky, and the language barrier slows things considerably. If we didn’t have a couple of Spanish speakers on the bus, we’d have a big problem. I got a shower, and settled down to wait. Seems like these last three clubs have all had upstairs dressing rooms.

The shows went well: AC kicked ass, and is getting steadily tighter and more consistent. Tony’s band is playing well, but some numbers they seemed to struggle through, while others just rage. Their set is 100 min while ours is only 35, so I imagine that, and the level of difficulty has to play a part.

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After the show it was the usual quick breakdown and on the bus. The after show hang was long, with me and Sean finally giving up near dawn.

The next stop was Murcia. We were parked in the front yard of the club, and across the street was a Spanish Wal-Mart/Shopping Center situation. Everything from haircuts to travel to auto parts. We were told by the promoter that laundry would be available, but the nice lady said she’d have it back first thing in the morning. They sent it out instead of in-house. Hosed again. Some of us haven’t done laundry since Prague. We sat in a cafe for awhile, but basically were twiddling our thumbs until the club opened at 6 pm. By the time we went on, we were all exhausted already.

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Again, the shows went well, breakdown as usual, nothing new to report there. Aquiles is continuing to break hardware, but I’m used to it now, so no drama. Quite a short after-show hang, everybody was so tired.

Next day was Seville, and the worst becalming of them all. The club was in a shitty industrial part of Seville, and we were warned not to stray from the bus as it was a dangerous neighborhood. We sat around and watched movies, and Aquiles and I watched the Iron Maiden movie, Flight 666. It was very inspiring.

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Once we got in the club, after 5:30, it was more of the same: fast load-in, and a long wait for soundcheck. We had passed time for  doors before we finished soundcheck. The upshot is, there has been a decent crowd turnout at all these shows in Spain. AC turned in a great show, but somewhere near the end, Doug hit Mike’s guitar neck so hard that it broke one of the bolts. It’s fucked, stay tuned for updates on that one. Tony’s set was straight up, but a high level of bass clams. From a tech perspective, uneventful, and that’s how we like it. Another fast breakdown, and out. After a single glass of wine I was falling asleep in the lounge so I just went to bed. Tomorrow promises to be a cluster-fuck anyway.

Next stop: Vigo, Spain.

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