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Getting Kicked Out Of Karaoke Bars & More: On Tour In The US With Pat Chow

12 April 2018 | 4:20 pm | Ashby Ranson

Hey, y’all!

We’re currently en route to Brooklyn to play the final show of our somehow amazing tour with The By Gods. I can’t possibly express how much fun we’ve had or the incredible relationships we’ve made along the way. But I’m going to give it a go...

The venue in St. Louis was incredible, mainly due to the excellent hospitality displayed from the barkeep, Matt, who plays in a local band called shitstorm. After the gig ended, we kicked on inside the bar, where shots and beers were aplenty - as were the ciggies after hearing we could smoke inside — which, unsurprisingly, led to Ben leaving/losing his phone there.

It’s been a long time of having no music in the car for him, so I know he is eager to pick it up when we arrive in NYC, where Matt was kind enough to post it to. We were offered accommodation at the bar , but instead chose to stay at a motel, which ended up with all four of us sharing a double bed.

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Speaking of good hosts, we’ve all decided we’re going to move in with Adam and his lovely parents in Cincinnati. Adam used to play in a band called Mad Anthony and headlined our gig at the Southgate house solo. The venue was a huge converted church. There were two levels and three rooms, one of which is huge! There were gorgeous stained glass windows which we caught at the perfect time.

A local punter came up to Jamie and myself asking where in Australia we were from. When we responded with Perth, he followed up with, “Oh, do you know Doctopus? They’re one of my favourite bands!” Somehow Perth will always follow you around the world, and I’m totally okay with that. The gig was so lovely and very relaxed. Adam's set was so emotive and inspiring that Ben and I wanted to do a solo song each, which we did.

The next day we did the coolest thing that might have ever happen to any of us. Adam and The By Gods lined us up to do a sofaburn session with Mike Montgomery from Ampline and R. Ring. Mike owns Candyland studios in Dayton, and recorded the most recent Breeders album. We were very overwhelmed arriving, and by the whole experience. The gear alone was enough to do that. Room after room full of incredible things. Mike played All Nerve to us on vinyl and talked through the procedures they used and the processes they take to decide on structure and sound.

Make It Hard is on our upcoming album and is the song we decided to record with him there. It should be available soon, alongside the live video shot by George.

After the studio, we were all a little tired and unsure what to do next, following such a euphoric experience. Adam blurted out “so do you guys wanna get drunk?” Yes, Adam, yes we did. He took us to a few bars prior to a local, indie radio station for what is now the loosest interview we’ve ever done. I obviously can’t share the name of the station for fear of restreams.

For those of you following the tour on social media, you may know we then went to a karaoke bar. Someone who worked there recognised Adam from his band and offered us a private room. After many shots, we were really giving it our all, or so we thought. I looked up at one point and Natalie was wearing a wig! So we all went and found a room full of wigs and all ended up in pink bobs singing Take On Me. After being kicked out of the venue, not once but twice, we weren’t done. We decided to play car-eoke (exactly what it sounds like), much to sober Tye’s dismay.

A lot has happened and I write the rest of this during my stopover in Auckland so I’m going to skip ahead a little.

Number one tour doggy award goes to Elly, the tallest dog in all of Philly. Massive thanks to Elly’s parents and mega hosts Dave and Rachel. Dave’s band Birthday Boy (one of my new favourite bands) played with us in Philadelphia, which, I believe, was the first sunny day we’d had in over a week. TV never lies. The venue we played was an awesome store called Creep Records.

Leaving Philly and driving into New York created a heaviness in all our hearts. Looking at the skyline crossing over bridges definitely inspired our DJ sets. Many beloved NYC songs were played and sang, but most notable Perfect Day by Lou Reed. More car-eoke??

After we played our last gig at Alphaville in Brooklyn, I needed to step outside for a while, the weight of the situation crashed on me a little, as I think it did us all. After the gig finished everything got a bit hectic. I don’t necessarily remember the upcoming details, but at one bar we went to, Goldy did not one, but two shoeys. The second because I found out I missed the first and immediately tipped my beer into his shoe he was still holding. After getting home at around 5 we all gathered on the fire escape and it started snowing, which I’d never seen before. It felt like a perfect end to a perfect tour.

Natalie, George and Tye stuck around for an extra day, which I think we all needed. We had decided to all get matching tattoos, and ended up deciding on a design of the outline of our tour van and u-haul, Goldy and Tye’s first tattoos, may I add. There was a bit of a wait time so we wandered around aimlessly for a while until we stumbled upon an unassuming bar, that turned out to be the greatest place ever. And less than two minutes in Perfect Day started to play. Serendipity!

Some honourable mentions go out to the cult, Daddy’s little helpers. If interested enquirer within. Also to the great 2018 worm off, which I humbly accept the title.

I don’t think any of us really knew what we were getting into. The reality of the tour has really, seriously, outdone our expectations. I’m confident I speak for Jamie, Ben and Goldy when I say we have made lifelong friends with everyone we’ve encountered, but especially George, Natalie and Tye. I miss you guys so much already and appreciate you more than you know. Can’t wait to do the same thing in Ausland!! Til next time.