Live Dates

29 NovLe Phenix, ValenciennesTickets
30 NovLa Vapeur, DijonTickets
2 DecTransbordeur, LyonTickets
3 DecRockstore, MontpellierTickets
5 DecBikini, ToulouseTickets
6 DecKrakatoa, BordeauxTickets
7 DecLa Carriere, NantesTickets
25 JanEngine Shed, LincolnTickets
27 JanMusic Hall, AberdeenTickets
28 JanO2 Academy, GlasgowTickets
29 JanO2 Academy, GlasgowSOLD OUT!
31 JanVictoria Hall, StokeTickets
1 FebUEA Nick Rayns, NorwichTickets
3 FebG Live, GuildfordSOLD OUT!
4 FebO2 Academy, BrixtonTickets
5 FebO2 Academy, BrixtonSOLD OUT!
7 FebParr Hall, WarringtonTickets
8 FebRock City, NottinghamTickets
10 FebUni Great Hall, CardiffTickets
11 FebO2 Apollo, ManchesterTickets
12 FebO2 Academy, LeedsTickets
14 FebGuildhall, PortsmouthTickets
15 FebCliffs Pavilion, SouthendTickets
17 FebDome, BrightonTickets
18 FebO2 City Hall, NewcastleTickets
19 FebO2 Academy, BirminghamTickets
21 FebO2 Academy, BristolSOLD OUT!
22 FebHexagon, ReadingTickets
24 FebCity Hall, SheffieldTickets
25 FebDe Montfort Hall, LeicesterTickets
26 FebCorn Exchange, CambridgeSOLD OUT!
4-7 AugRebellion Festival, BlackpoolTickets
29 SepZoom, FrankfurtTickets
30 SepKantine, CologneTickets
2 Oct013, TilburgTickets
3 OctFabrik, HamburgTickets
4 OctAmager Bio, CopenhagenTickets
6 OctPlan B, MalmoTickets
7 OctTradgarn, GothenburgTickets
8 OctBerns, StockholmTickets
11 MarL’Olympia, ParisTickets


Baz's tour diary-The Antipodes Winter '12

Well, here it is… We’ve been looking forward to this since it was announced around three months ago and, as floods and bloody awful English winter weather really begin to take hold with a vengeance, it couldn’t have come at a better time either…need some sun on my bones…

It begins for me on the evening of Tuesday 20th when I get a flight down to Bristol ready for two day’s band rehearsals with Jim MacCauley and general tightening up of the sets we’ll be doing…and a look at Nuclear Device, our Antipodean anthem, which we haven’t done for a couple of years…gotta play it down under… Rehearsals can be a drag but we haven’t seen each other for a few weeks and we’re looking forward to it as much as you can…

Selecting the set…

We’re also meeting up with Jet and David Boni, our biographer and photographer, for more footage for the documentary we’re making and also some press shots for the UK tour in March…it’s a busy time. After a couple of days of playing and clowning for the cameras, including a very funny visit to Tucker’s Grave with the crew, we feel we’re ready to roll and, as the cars come to pick us up to take us to Heathrow, we’re all in good spirits.

For practical reasons we’re flying on a different plane and route from the crew so JJ, Dave, Gaz our tour manager and I board one of the new Airbus 380’s for the first leg of our journey to Dubai and the crew get theirs to Singapore. We’ve never been on one of these new giants and it truly is something to behold. Whoever thought a double decker airliner would ever be designed, let alone be able to get airborne…it’s unbelievably massive, sleek, and amazingly comfortable and we settle down for the seven hour flight down to the middle east. One of the most startling features are the cameras that are mounted outside the fuselage…you can watch the plane’s progress from the comfort of your seat…there’s a forward facing one mounted on the tail so you can see the whole aircraft, one on the nose so you get a pilot’s eye view, and scarily one underneath so you can see the ground…didn’t spend too much time looking at that one!

After a very pleasant journey we arrive and, after an hour’s layover, we board another 380 for the 12 and a half hour journey to Melbourne. It doesn’t matter how much you try and plan your journey and routine sleep wise, we’ve found over the years that it’s just best to sleep when you need to, eat when you need to and generally get by the best you can. Everyone’s different and what works for you won’t necessarily work for your mate and vice versa. The four of us are spread out across the cabin for this leg so we don’t see much of each other for the flight. JJ decides to crash out as soon as we get to cruising altitude but Dave, Gaz and I head to the bar (amazing…a pub in the sky)  for breakfast beers and a pleasant hour shooting the breeze at 37,000 feet.

After a few hours sleep (you’re never quite sure how long you get), I come around to see JJ hovering over me saying he’s going to the bar now too. And so he and I go back for a few bloody Marys and a catch up. The curtains open and a bleary eyed Dave comes through on his way to the loo and decides to join us too…obviously. After some dinner and a movie, we come into Melbourne decidedly jaded and seriously starting to feel it. After another hour’s layover there too, we board our last flight for the final leg of the journey to Auckland and finally get there after around 23 hours in the air…we’re truly knackered now. A jolly Kiwi driver called Ian picks us up and takes us to the hotel. After freshening up we convene in the bar (where else) and the crew are all here safe and sound too. Their route took them to Sydney and they get in an hour after we do…all smiles and back slaps.

My long time mate Bob, who lives here now, joins us and, after a few beers and a magnificent burger out in the town, we are all totally wiped out and bed beckons. I’ve never been to New Zealand before and am knocked out to be here. The band are tight, spirits are high, the gigs are selling well we’ve been told and all the signs are good for a great tour. Bring it on…

Plane count- 4

Day off  28th November 2012 

Wednesday the 28th is a day off and, as we’re new to this city, we all decide to maybe do some stuff and see where we’re at. I rarely make it down for breakfast but, as the jet lag/time zone thing is beginning to take hold, I’m bright eyed and bushy tailed at 8.30 and go down to the restaurant for some food. Some of the crew are there and we eat together discussing what we’ll do with the day.

New Zealand news interview

I learn that TV (watch NZ news story here) and radio interviews have come in for part of the day for JJ and myself which scuppers the plans I’d made to spend the day with Bob to go to his place, see where he lives and generally hang out…but it’s no problem of course and, after we do what’s required, I have a couple of hours to do a bit of sightseeing across the city. Gaz and I decide to take a ferry to Davenport which is a suburb across the bay and Bob joins us for the trip which is short but much appreciated, as we get to go on the water, get some fresh air, and see the sights. Auckland only has a population of around a million which is small by a lot of city’s standards but, because of the sprawl, is one of the largest city masses in the world…it can take half a day to get from A to B and is interconnected by bridges and waterways…very picturesque and interesting.

We get back early evening and on entering the hotel bar for a beer or two before going out to eat, we encounter Debbie Harry who’s just got in from LA and looks a little tired after 30 hours on the move. She’s lovely is Debbie…quietly spoken but always keen to talk and interested in what you have to say… JJ asks her where the rest of the band are, adding that Clem Burke is probably upstairs dyeing his hair, which gets a great guffaw from Debbie… She turns to me and says “Baz, JJ is having a go at my drummer…what do you think?” I reply that Clem is a pretty easy target to be fair which gets another laugh…he’s a great drummer though…great to watch.

We say bye to Debbie and head down to the waterfront for some fish with JJ, Dave, Bob, Gaz and myself. The restaurant we choose is alive with punters, all Chinese, as we learn the place is a Chinese seafood bar…so the signs are good…although nothing could be further from the truth… We wait for an hour and a quarter for our food, which is ok but not great…it turns out they only have one wok and burner and are seriously up against it…and the waitress says it happens quite a lot…bummer… Confronting staff in a restaurant is always shaky but JJ does it with total eloquence as you’d expect, making his point without getting angry and, after a brief conflab with the manager, we’re out on the street waiting for our car… disappointed but satisfied with the outcome…the only black spot on an otherwise nice day…oh well…

Trusts Stadium, Auckland  29th November 2012 

Thurs 29th is a show day and I make it up for breakfast again…much to the amusement of the crew…twats…and I decide that I need to get myself together for the first gig I’ve ever done so far from home…the furthest land mass it’s possible to reach from the UK. I read, sleep and have a bath before the 4pm lobby call to take us to the show.

On the way to the venue, I’m looking out of the bus window and, as I gaze across an expanse of water to my right, I see a penguin! A lonely little soldier standing there at the water’s edge all by himself…as if contemplating whether to dip his toe in or not…I can’t believe it…a penguin, in the wild, in a city…I’m a bird geek and I’m delighted…sometimes it’s the little things…

We arrive at the Trusts Stadium, which is a sports hall half an hour from the city centre where we’re staying, just in time to see Blondie on their way back from soundcheck…We’ve played with them on four other occasions now and are becoming quite good friends with the band. We go in for soundcheck and, as it’s the first show and we’re using a brand new monitor engineer and guitar tech, and as Blondie have gone slightly over time (as is usually the case with the first gig of a tour), it’s tight time wise and things are slightly hectic…but we get through it pretty painlessly and settle down backstage to wait for show time.

There’s a band on before us who sound remarkably like a cross between the B52’s and the Rezillos and are quite good fun…and then, all at once, it’s our turn and The Stranglers are playing in New Zealand again for the first time since 1999, a year before I joined the band. And it’s great…

There are a few teething troubles as you’d expect with a small, semi-new crew but overall we get there and the 2,000 punters roar their approval after we finish a tight punchy hour. It’s all seated and I have some fun with the crowd too, winding them up and generally taking the piss out of the first few rows who steadfastly refuse to stand up…and pretty soon the entire audience , who are now all on their feet, are ribbing them for it…booing them and generally having a go…very funny. We’re hot, sweaty and all smiles as we come off and the mood is high…What a great gig…and, for me and Jim our drummer, the farthest we’ve ever played away from home…the other side of the world…

Jim and I then wander out  to side stage to watch a couple of numbers from Blondie and, as Debbie asks the audience to show their appreciation for us, the roof literally comes off surprising us both…she catches my eye and, smiling, gives me the thumbs up…job done…

Travel day  30th November 2012

If you read my tour diary of our exploits over the summer, you’ll know that I love to wax lyrical about some of the places we visit…especially if we or I haven’t been there before. Tasmania is such a place. One of those places you hear about all your life and think there’s a very slim chance, if any, that you’ll ever go there…even though you’d love to.

As there are no direct flights there from New Zealand, we have to take another two planes today, the first is a jet from Auckland to Melbourne. We’re all pretty tired now and are looking forward, if possible, to a relatively quiet three and a half hour flight…no such luck! We board the plane, which is late, and all settle down in seats in the rear of the plane. It’s quiet and, just as I’m hoping against hope it stays that way, a troupe of New Zealand schoolgirl netball players marches down the aisle in perfect step and begin to take their seats around us… They’re all jabbering, squealing and carrying on in true St Trinians fashion…a riot of teeth braces, hormones and tartan skirts…fucking peachy… To make matters worse, there’s a couple of screaming babies that have been added to the mix sitting a few rows ahead and they’re both beginning to compete with each other as crying babies love to do… All this, coupled with the crap leg room, non-existent air conditioning and full hour of really bumpy turbulence, makes for a nasty trip indeed and it’s no little relief when we touch down and get off the god forsaken thing in Aus a few hours later…only to find our connection to Hobart is going to be late too…

Dash 8 aircraft

But this time it’s our fault…all our kit and bags have to be stowed in the hold of a little Dash 8 prop plane that’s going to take us to the island and we’ve all but filled it…so, as they’re resolving this, we head to a bar near the departure gate and have a few VB’s.

As I mentioned earlier we have a couple of new boys on the crew for this trip, and Gaz Fail, the guitar tech who is already legendary in his field, and is a superb tech, turns out to be one of the funniest blokes I’ve ever met in my life…and I’ve met a few. It’d be fair to say that he likes a drink does Gaz and, as we wait for our flight to be called, he gets into gear and has us rolling around with his stories, schtick and general all round silly sod-ness. He reminds me of Roly Birkin, the character from the Fast Show that Paul Whitehouse did so brilliantly…the old drunk who mumbles incoherently and then suddenly punctuates his sentences with a few recognisable words or sentences…and one of our crew has come up with a fantastic character for him simply called ‘Roadie’…based on the old Skippy, Lassie and Flipper TV shows from our youth where the animals would make their noises and the kid would go “what’s that you’re saying Skippy? Old Mortimer has fallen down a mineshaft 3.6 miles south west of here and we need to drag him out with a rope tied to a tractor?” Roadie does the same…”what’s that you say Roadie? The amps are overloading and unless we re-attenuate them pronto all the circuits are going to overload and cause a surge of power from the mains?” Holy crap! We better get on it! Thanks once again for your help Roadie! Infantile humour is always welcome on the road…He’s a great guy and the weeks ahead promise to be a fun place to be when he’s around…

Hobart, Tasmania

Anyway, they do eventually call our flight and pretty soon we’re wending our way to one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen…it truly does look like paradise as we fly over the city and, as nightfall is approaching, the whole area is bathed in a soft golden light that’s indescribable. It’s been unseasonably hot here during the day, 33 degrees we’re told, and out to the left we can see small fires in the surrounding forest…we’re assured that they’re under control, but it still adds an extra flavour of wonder to the place and the sighs of relief are almost palpable as we touch down in Tasmania for the very first time for all of us. We quickly head to the hotel which is a beautiful place on the quayside, nestled amongst the waterways, bars and restaurants at the water’s edge. JJ, Gaz Knighton (we’ve got two Gaz’s on the crew now so I’ll refer to them in future as Gaz K and Gaz F ) and myself head around the corner to the first place we can find to eat before they all close up for the night and chance upon Fish Frenzy, which we’re told is a famous Hobart seafood place, but is just an upmarket chippy really.  As we sit outside, marvelling at our surroundings, drinking wine and eating calamari, the moon comes out from behind the clouds and illuminates the bay…it’s breathtaking…What an amazing end to a long and tiring day…There’s talk of a boat trip tomorrow before we head off to soundcheck and, as my head hits the pillow, I’m once again reminded how lucky I am, we all are, to be able to call this our job…

Plane count- 6

Derwent Entertainment Centre, Hobart  1st December 2012

I wake up at exactly 10am today, to the sound of the lady knocking on my door and bringing me my breakfast…must’ve slept well then. I sit down to try and write some more and get a text from JJ asking if I want to go for a wander, which I do.

We head up into town for a walk and as we pass some sandwich boards out on the pavement, he points out that there’s a tattoo place nearby. I like tattoos…and I especially like getting tattoos in far flung places…places you seldom visit and maybe never will again. I’ve been tattooed in Milan, New York, Sydney, Brisbane and er…Sheffield… and it’s a rush when you know it’s going to happen…ask anyone who takes their tatts seriously and they’ll tell you the same.

Anyway, I make to go in the door and he stops me, pulling me back, laughing and saying we don’t have time…but he’s planted the seed. We have a lovely lunch on the quayside during which I spot a guy in a Newcastle Utd football shirt. He turns out to be a bona fide Geordie who’s lived here with his missus for 26 years and is a nice guy to boot (normally I’d run a mile on seeing a ‘skunk’ but I feel we’re far enough away from home to extend the courtesies…ha…).  I put him on the guest list for tonight’s show and  I’m now well and truly up for some small commemorative tattoo to say I’ve been here… People who travel a lot often do this and I like the thought of it… So I go up town myself later to try my luck only to be told that, as it’s a Saturday (I’d forgotten this), I’ve got no chance with my limited window of time…bummer…the guy, who’s really nice about it, then rubs salt into the wounds by telling me that had I gone in the morning, when we were originally passing, he could have fitted me in! JJ, needless to say, whose body is a temple (ahem) finds this most amusing when I catch up with him for soundcheck…

We head back to the gig after only 45 minutes between soundcheck and show…there have been multiple problems with the equipment both for us and Blondie and everything is running very late.  Also we have The Saints (I’m Stranded…remember that?) on the bill too and everything is horribly behind…We eventually take to the stage around 20 minutes late and it’s all seated again…but the sound is good and the looks we get from the first few rows more than make up for it…they just don’t know what to make of it and we revel in that…I snap a string (again) four songs in but, after a quick guitar change and re-string, we get into our stride and deliver a tight, punchy set…we’re on it already and are pleased with the way things go…

You tend to polarise virgin territory audiences like this one and it gives the feeling of starting all over again in a way. They know the hits though, or most of them, and we have people on their feet in the wings… The security won’t let anyone dance out front though (later when encountering Debbie at the hotel, she says it was the same for them too)…but, over the course of the next hour, we get them and, by the end, it’s another (very far) away win… After a wind down pint with Gaz K and Dave, it’s lights out…very tired.

JJ in Melbourne

Travel day  2nd December 2012

We reconvene at 8.30am in the hotel lobby for the flight to Melbourne and everyone is there. The Blondie lot look a bit tired too and, after a non-eventful hour’s flight, we make the hotel by 2pm and, after a quick pint in the bar, it’s a siesta before a 6pm meet and out for dinner. Melbourne has the largest Greek population of any city in the world outside of Athens we’ve been told so we decide to eat Greek, finding a lovely little quiet restaurant five minutes’ walk from the hotel. The staff are very cool and friendly and pretty soon the table is piled with mezze and lamb dishes. Dave G eats more than I’ve seen him eat in ages, devouring two plates of fried haloumi cheese and salad…I like seeing him eat because he doesn’t too often and I worry about him sometimes.

That done we all head back to the hotel, Dave and Gaz K heading for the casino bar and JJ and I heading off to our respective rooms for an early night…I’m knackered again…but on getting into bed decide to watch a movie and opt for Ted, a ridiculous film about a foul mouthed teddy bear that comes to life…and I have to say I laugh my arse off all the way through it…one of the best, albeit silliest, films I’ve seen all year…highly recommended…don’t show it to your kids though…

Plane count- 7

Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Melbourne  3rd December 2012

Try and sleep as late as I can today but it doesn’t work…really starting to feel it now… JJ texts and asks if I fancy a wander out for some lunch around 12.30. We walk about half a mile through the buzz of a Melbourne Monday and end up in a little alfresco place in the middle of the Yarra River which winds Its way through the city centre…You walk halfway across the bridge and down the steps onto one of the central support structures that holds it up and there’s a really cool little place there. We eat (JJ has a burger that’s about half the size of his head), head back and, after another hour’s reading in my room, head off to soundcheck.

The Sidney Myer Music Bowl is a beautiful outdoor amphitheatre set smack in the heart of Melbourne. It’s sleek and modern and holds around 5,000 people and, as is the norm as we’ve been experiencing on this tour, the P.A. and sound are superb. Louie is in seventh heaven with the stuff he’s been given to play with and can be seen semi swooning from time to time…Things are running a lot smoother now, both crews are in the swing of things and we soundcheck quickly and painlessly, all happy and ready to go.


Calm before the storm-Myer Music Bowl pre show

After a brief return to the hotel to get ready, we’re back at the gig in a trice and are ready to play at 7.30. Matt, our new monitor engineer, is starting to get in the groove too…his mixes in my ears are different but not wrong…they’re just…well, different…and I’m quickly learning to adjust to his way of doing things. We launch straight into Five Minutes and, immediately, people are on their feet and into it…and the set speeds by as is nearly always the case when you’re enjoying it…At one stage, I look down into the crowd and, lo and behold, a there’s a guy in a Sunderland football shirt who’s going nuts and the whole thing seems to shift up a gear…there are people absolutely freaking out and it’s a joy to see. ( A great set of photos from this gig here).

We leave the stage triumphant and sweaty and, on getting back to the dressing room and a towel down, enjoy a bit of dinner before we leave. Blondie are on and things don’t seem to be going too well for a couple of them, with looks and signals being shot across to the monitor engineer and some scowls creeping in too. They sound great though and Debbie is done up in gold lame and a spiky blonde punk wig that looks really good under the lights.

The biggest laugh though is when we find out that Ron ‘The Hedgehog’ Jeremy is in the audience. There’s a porn expo on in the city apparently and, for those of you who don’t know, he was a star in the 70’s and 80’s in a variety of films known as Adult Entertainment…a porn star…Gentlemen (and, very possibly, a lot of ladies too) of a certain age will probably recall seeing him in various movies in the dead of night when everyone else had gone to bed…ahem… He’s a weird looking little geezer but he’s got more in his trousers than most have us have got to walk on…the people you meet in this job…

Billboard, Melbourne  4th December 2012

Early start this morning as my alarm goes off at 9 (well that’s early enough for me anyway) and I have a radio interview to do on the phone at 9.30. They ring late but ultimately it’s an enjoyable one and, after a quick shower and breakfast, I meet JJ and Gaz K in the lobby along with Clive from the record company and it’s off to a really cool suburb of Melbourne called Collingwood to do another radio interview together.

JJ & Baz with Mike & Owen at PBS

This is PBS and it’s a really funky community radio station mostly staffed by volunteers and music enthusiasts…and it’s totally fabulous. There’s a huge culture of community radio in Australia and people take their music very seriously here…there are actually more people who listen to it than commercial radio. They exist through small government subsidies, fund raising events and public support and manage to keep their heads above water pretty well. We say that, if we return in the New Year as hoped, we’d like to help and do a show for them if we can. On entering the small reception area, I can see a sound proof booth at the back of the room and there’s a band in there recording a live session for the station and really giving it some…so much so that we walk up to watch them through the glass and it’s only then that we realise it’s legendary British garage/beat boom rockers The Pretty Things…and they’re fucking fabulous! I’d like to stay and hear more but we’re whisked away to another part of the building to record our interview which lasts around an hour and goes very well, the interviewer,  Michael, being very well researched and thorough in his preparation…it’s a pleasure to do interviews like this and we relax into it and tell him all he wants to know…great…and then when we get back to reception to leave, we find Gaz K all smiles as he’s met Phil May and Dick Taylor, the two remaining original Pretty Things and has had his picture taken with them…he tells them who he’s with and they give us a big thumbs up too…it seems there’s a healthy respect there which tickles us as it’s very mutual…they’re even older than we are but, Christ, can they rock…just before we leave I nip into the control room and ask the engineer if I can hear a bit of what they’ve just done before we leave and it’s huge, tight and kick arse…they all harmonise too and it sounds great…more power to ‘em…

We have a spot of lunch and then head off to the club to sound check…It’s a medium sized club with a great P.A. and stage and, again, we check quickly and painlessly before heading back for a pre match kip before the gig.

The Billboard is pretty full by the time we get there, considering it’s supposed to be a low key gig on a Tuesday night and it’s at fairly short notice…we attract around 450 people to a 500 capacity club so we’re happy, and I think that reflects in our performance as we play, in my opinion, the best we’ve played on this tour by a quite considerable margin…and we’ve been playing well all year. The sound is tight, the stage is big enough to work, and we shift up through the gears smoothly and end up with a great performance. The crowd are very enthusiastic and there are a number of vintage and UK tour t-shirts in attendance, which can only buoy your spirits… (watch Hanging Around from the Billboard here)

After an after show pizza and beer, we retire to the hotel, very tired and happy. Our time is Melbourne has been really productive and, over the last three days here, we’ve played two good shows, done two worthwhile interviews and made countless new friends…We fly out in the morning hoping for a speedy return…I think it would be safe to say that Melbourne is among our favourite cities to visit…it has been one of mine since I first came here eight years ago, and a couple of times since, and I know Dave and JJ feel the same.

Travel day  5th December 2012

We leave the hotel at 11 the next morning and are driven to the airport by Kelly, a wiry spirited lass whose small frame hides a big strength…she literally takes my huge bag from me and hauls it into the back of the bus single handed without so much as a by your leave and is very talkative on the way to the airport. We sign a CD for her, as well as one for yet another Gary, our regular driver for the last three days in Melbourne. He is a great, permanently stoned, font of knowledge and hyperactive geezer who drives the crew in and who we miss regrettably… He became a pal over the last days and I would have liked to say a proper goodbye to him…not least because he claims to have a ’64 Telecaster which is my holy grail of guitars (as it was made the same year as I was!) and which he’s been threatening to bring for me to have a look at and play…ah well…maybe next time.

After an uneventful hour’s flight to Sydney and easy transition to the hotel, JJ, Dave and I head down to the harbour for a beer and look around. I’ve been here a few times before and am always bowled over by the amazing spectacle of the bridge, Opera House and quayside, which is overlooked by a huge downtown of skyscrapers…an imposing and breath taking sight…The water is like a highway, alive with speedboats, launches, ferries and cruisers…I take a good few photos and, after our drink, we hop in a cab to a recommended fish restaurant not too far away. The food is spectacular and I opt for my favourite, Barramundi, which melts in my mouth. Dave eats well again, which is pleasing to see and we head back for an early night, stuffed and tired. We’ve got Australia’s biggest and most popular breakfast TV show Sunrise to do in the morning when we’ll be playing Golden Brown live to the entire nation, not to mention a sold out show with Blondie in the evening…bed beckons…

Plane count- 8

Enmore Theatre, Sydney  6th December 2012

I awake at 6.30 to the loudest fart I’ve ever heard in my life…”that can’t be me” I think, before it happens again. There’s a cruise ship in the harbour that we saw yesterday, an absolutely immense vessel like an almighty horizontal tower block and it’s putting to sea. Just to make sure most of Sydney knows about it, the captain blows the horn and I just about jump to the ceiling…if it wasn’t for a skyscraper in the way, I’d be able to see it…we’re so close to the harbour.

It acts as a good wake up call though and, after a shower and fresh clobber, I meet the boys in the lobby for the trip to the Sunrise studios in downtown Sydney for breakfast TV. Never ceases to amaze me does this…all these unbearably chipper people with mile wide smiles, dripping earnestness and sincerity…but it’s great exposure…and the two presenters do seem to be pretty genuine. It’s the most popular breakfast show in Australia by far and we’re assured a good few million viewers, so we get on with it. As we sit in the green room waiting our turn, we catch up with some of the world’s news. Touring can wrap you in a bubble if you let it and it’s easy to forget about what’s happening in the world, so it’s good to see what’s going on. Unfortunately, the two lead stories are awful in their own desperate ways…one is about a photographer in New York, who instead of helping a man who was pushed onto the track into the path of an oncoming train, decided to take pictures of it instead and sell them to the American press…a man with absolutely no soul or empathy for human life…his excuse was that he was trying to warn the train driver with the flash of his camera…in beautifully framed stills…it actually turns my stomach.

The other is that some woman called Kate, who has something to do with the royal family, is pregnant. Two Aussie scallywags on the radio have phoned the hospital and somehow got through to the private ward she’s being kept in…by pretending to be the Queen! We roar with laughter as the British press is vilified for taking it all too seriously and marvelling that, with everything else going on in the world, this is a leading story…the most amazing thing of all being that the receptionist  there was taken in by the obviously camped up accents and shenanigans going on in the background…the term ‘ get a fucking life’ springs to mind…(we learn a few days later of the fate of the poor woman involved and immediately feel awful about laughing the way we did, although no-one could’ve known what would happen, obviously…)

Eventually, we’re called downstairs and are allowed to do a few run throughs when the programme goes to commercials…as it’s going out live. It sounds really good in my ears and our loyal, dependable crew have it all sussed. The time comes and we’re off and it’s pretty good…I worry about how craggy my voice will be so early in the morning (for me) but it seems to be ok…I guess when it surfaces on the internet I’ll be able to see… (you can watch it here). Satisfied with that we head back to the hotel for breakfast and then I’m up to my room to chill for a few hours and wait for soundcheck time…think I’ll go for a walk though…lovely day.

Camera view from Morning Show

We head down to the Enmore a few hours later, which is in a great part of Sydney called Newtown. It’s got that sort of ramshackle bohemian look to it and is full of bars and little shops that you just don’t see that much anymore. Pawn shops full of old guitars and clothes boutiques with stuff hanging outside swinging in the gentle afternoon breeze…old colonial style buildings with verandas that are bursting with people drinking in the sun…a riot of life…I want to get out and go for a wander but work is calling and we need to get through the dreadful Sydney traffic in time to at least get a good run through and balance all the sounds up. We needn’t have worried, our crew are on it, as always, and everything is set and ready to go. The Enmore is a great old place, at least a hundred years old, and reminiscent of a smaller Brixton Academy with a huge standing area that slopes down towards to stage and a stage that gently slopes towards the audience. I love the old thinking and attention to detail that obviously went into old places like this and it’s designed in such a way that everyone can see everything all of the time. They’re renovating the dressing room area at the moment though and it’s really cramped backstage, so we don’t spend too much time there and head off back to hotel for a siesta before going back for the gig.

We get there just in time to see the opening band come off…The  Machinations were a kind of one hit wonder band here in Australia in the 80’s and they’ve recently reformed to do some gigs. I don’t hear them though but have a chat with the drummer who seems to be a nice enough chap and who’s just happy to be here and playing again. Soon we get the call from Gaz K and we’re off. The lights go down, Waltzinblack comes on, and the place explodes…I walk out and look at the audience and the place is absolutely rammed…not a space remains. As always when you’re enjoying it, it goes by in a flash and we’re off to the sanctity of our dressing room. The backstage area is teeming with liggers, crews and celebrities, all backslapping us as we go through and we see a few faces we recognise….some of them looking at us with guarded expressions…”fuck…it’s the Stranglers” which we always enjoy… Louie, our beloved soundman, has eaten a dodgy oyster earlier in the evening, between soundcheck and gig and, bless him, he looks awful…puking and poo-ing and generally very grey in the face…He manfully does his duty behind the desk for us for the show (he later tells me he has a bucket next to him in case anything decided to take its leave) but, on the last note of our performance, is whisked back to his hotel for bed and, more importantly, a private toilet…hope he’s alright…Gaz K had one too and is feeling a little light headed but it seems to have missed him.

There’s a guy who looks like the archetypal all American geek backstage, he’s got big silver rimmed glasses on with coke bottle bottom lenses and is roaring drunk…it turns out to be the legendary Mark Mothersbaugh from Devo, who are in town and I’m going to see tomorrow night with Simple Minds… Charlie Burchill, the ‘Minds guitarist is here too and it’s nice to meet him but it’s the Devo guy that really gets everyone laughing… I have to say this, he’s such an uber geek it’s mind boggling… He’s talking to JJ and, is so in awe of him, that he can hardly get his words out…he finally splutters that in his opinion The Stranglers are the finest band ever to come out of the UK, bar none, and he means it too…and he can’t believe he’s finally seen us play, repeating himself several times…there’s a wide eyed, childlike quality to him that I find endearing though…and he readily confesses to not being good in drink…(well, you don’t say) but, at least, he realizes he’s being such a nerd…very funny…he then sits down, picks up Jims drumsticks and prods Gaz K in his belly several times with one of them…and then tries to hit on one of the production girls who’s come into our room with some food…she doesn’t know who he is and, when she asks him, he says ”I’m Mr Poopy from Poopyville who’re you?” in that back of the throat American geek voice we all know so well…Well, that just finishes us all off…I can’t see for the tears in my eyes and, finally, he looks up at me and says “this guy wants to kill me…I’m leaving”…and he does… I have to say that’s the funniest five minutes I’ve had on this tour so far…I’m even chuckling as I write this…oh man…you had to be there though I suppose…I’ve never seen Devo but have always wanted to…seems I’ll get my chance…

Everything’s an anti-climax after that and, as Blondie are on and all the signs are that there’ll be a bit of a showbiz ‘do’ afterwards (yawn)…which their drummer really seems to like, we take off and are back in the relative sanctity of our rooms shortly after…a great and very interesting night. Thanks Sydney…

Days off  7th/8th/9th December 2012

You seldom get three days off in a row on any tour…so when you get two of those days off in Sydney, you tend to make them count. I rise late as it happens, around 10, and, after a shower, it’s off to Manly Island on the ferry for a walk around and a spot of lunch with a couple of the crew. We find an amazing place on the beach and load up with oysters, sardines, tuna and Barramundi…and some chilled wine…great. After a short ride back to the harbour, it’s a siesta and then out to see Devo at the Sydney Entertainment Centre…they’re in the middle of a line up with old Aussie rockers The Church (Under the Milky Way…classic) and Simple Minds, who I’ve seen many times and who I’ve never been too fussed about to be honest.

There’s mayhem backstage, as you’d imagine, with the cream of Sydney’s hangers on all vying for attention…and all of Blondie are here too…I say a few hellos and step out to see Devo from front of house…and they’re brilliant…costume changes, a huge back screen and a great sound…really powerful and a great mix…it’s a non-stop barrage and strange Mark Mothersbaugh, who I’m pleased to report seems totally sober now, is a ball of energy and weirdness…they have the whole place on their feet and an hour passes very quickly… Devo obviously aren’t for everyone, they never have been, but if you get a chance to see them I’d recommend going…top show. The promoters lay a car on for me after the show, which I’m very surprised about, but grateful, as I’m beat now and, as I’m not staying for Simple Minds, I’m back at the hotel and in bed inside 20 minutes…great…

There’s not too much to say about the next day really other than JJ, Gaz K and I go to a restaurant and, inadvertently, have a five and a half hour lunch in the sun watching the world go by…it’s a hard life… I think we got a taxi back to the hotel and, I think, I woke up in the half light of morning spread-eagle on the bed with my clothes still on, but only one shoe…I think I did…

The next morning sees an early rise and a very sore head, for the two and a half hour flight up the east coast to Townsville, North Queensland. I confess to never even hearing of the place until I saw the itinerary for the tour and the word on everyone’s lips was “where?”  (ironically when I was getting my cab to Newcastle airport for the start of all this, seemingly 100 years ago, I mentioned to the taxi driver where I was headed…and he’d been to Townsville!) but, with a population of 180,000, it’s actually Australia’s largest tropical city and lies at the southernmost tip of the Great Barrier Reef. It’s 31 degrees when we touch down and, as you step out of the terminal building, the heat hits you like a brick wall…

JJ and I head for lunch and, as the entire touring party are staying in the same hotel for the first time on this tour (and Blondie have invited everyone out for dinner…both bands and both crews…25 people in all), we eat light and then head outside for a swim and a beer. A few of the squad are heading across to Magnetic Island on the ferry and I opt to go. There are about 10 of us all told and the trip takes about 20 minutes…and I’m so pleased I went… It’s just one of those unplanned, spontaneous things that goes really well…and, although we’re probably not actually there for more than three and a half hours, we manage to get a minibus up to Horseshoe Bay, swim, take loads of pictures and then sit outside a great Aussie bar where a band are playing and drink six pitchers of beer between us…

There had been a plan to go to the Koala sanctuary that’s there but it was closed…the island being as laid back as it is…but we have a great time…Blondie’s drummer Clem comes swimming in the warm sea with us in a cordoned off area of netting to protect bathers from sharks and box jellyfish…there are a lot here…and he hasn’t emptied his pockets of money… Toby, Dave’s keyboard tech, is swimming along and finds a 50 dollar bill floating in the sea…then another and then some smaller bills…Clem realises it’s his (we give him some grief though…”oh yeah? It’s yours is it? How do you know?”…ha) but it genuinely is his and he gets nearly all of it back…telling some local kids when we leave that if they find any more they can keep it…Australian money is made of plastic and is indestructible… you can’t rip it or burn it and it’s waterproof too…luckily for him… Our taxi minibus is late to take us back to the harbour for the return ferry, so we get the bus and that’s a laugh too… It’s packed as the bar we were at tips out and people make their way home. Pretty soon there’s a group of pretty pissed blokes at the back singing and it’s great…real old style, with everyone laughing and talking…like a jolly boys outing…

After a brief hour in my room, convincing myself to stay awake after the woozy afternoon drinking beer in the sun, I head downstairs to meet everyone for dinner. We’ve taken over the entire downstairs area of the restaurant and the whole party is here. JJ, myself, Clem Burke and an enormous Aussie lighting rigger called Sos, who has the most impressive mono brow I’ve ever seen, sit together at a table and proceed to have a very enjoyable evening drinking six bottles of wine, devouring steak and chicken and talking about everything from music to Australian migratory birds, crocodiles to art deco…

I tell Sos that I’d been swimming in the sea earlier in the day and his face goes grey…he then explains that there are tiny jellyfish in the area called Irukandji, hardly visible to the naked eye in the water, which can get through the protective nets and that can kill, or at the very least lay you up for months, if one should sting you…(“Crocs and sharks are no problem, mate, but, if one of them facken things stings you, it’s goodnight!”) I’ll remember that thanks…

Louie, who is an outstanding pianist, entertains a few of us around a grand piano in the lobby with me singing and Clem playing spoons…to the delight of the hotel management…interesting evening…marred only by an altercation with hotel security which results in me, big Tony-our Aussie tour manager and Rick, Blondie’s drum tech, being barred from the casino bar where we’re supposed to be meeting people for a night cap…one of those silly things that comes from nothing and nobody can remember the following day anyway…As I’m sitting there alone in the garden, contemplating bed and gazing in wonder at the star constellations, which are all upside down to the way we see them in the northern hemisphere, I decide to go for one last swim at two in the morning in my pants, which I leave on a tree to dry overnight…and, strangely, they’re not there the following morning …

Plane count- 9

Entertainment Centre, Townsville  10th December 2012

This is a small arena style venue again and is smack bang next door to the hotel which is great…we can walk to soundcheck and back. It goes smoothly and 20 minutes after leaving my room to go, I’m back and decide to have a cool bath. It’s stinking hot outside and the humidity is doing for everyone, so I’m not too bothered about going out and relax to read my book and then have my customary hour sleep. We meet downstairs at 7.30 and, after a 45 second drive (appearances are everything!), we emerge from the bus and straight into the stage door. It seems like minutes later that we get the call to go on.

The gig is tight, smooth and effortless and, apart from a broken string for me, goes without a hitch. From the off, I again mention the seating situation and people start to stream to the front…this time unhindered by security and are left free to dance. As always, it’s over in the blink of an eye and, after a plate of lovely veggie curry (I’m meat and fished out…gimme vegetables!), it’s a walk back to the hotel and early to bed for the flight to Mackay the next morning…Townsville was great, wouldn’t want to live there though…I’d go mad with boredom I think…

Entertainment & Convention Centre, Mackay  11th December 2012

We all arrive at the airport together and we’re all on the same plane, another Dash 8, which will take us all down to Mackay, another place I’ve never heard of. It’s only a three hour drive from Townsville which makes it about 50 minutes by plane. I’m in a window seat and spend the most part of the journey looking at the landscape below and marvelling at the dry, dusty, barren landscape with many small rivers and tributaries leading out to sea. The plane hugs the coastline at 12,000 feet all the way and I get the best of both worlds.

This to me is probably what most people think of when they think of Australia…scrub, bush and no people…it occurred to me when we landed in Townsville a couple of days before too and it’s in evidence all down the Queensland coast….tiny townships, flying doctors, weird creatures superbly adapted to the environment, twisted trees, rocky outcrops, endless scorched land surface but still amazingly warm and friendly people. Mackay, we’re told, is famous for the Blue River which is an anomaly as all the rivers in Queensland are brown, due to the dust and sand of the landscape turning to silt and flowing down towards the ocean…taking good size portions of the riverbanks with them. There are huge clouds of brown water visible from the air around the river mouths, before eventually sinking and creating a striking border out to sea where brown gives way to the deep aquamarine of the ocean…beautiful and very odd at the same time.

Mackay is also the birth place of Cathy Freeman, the aboriginal runner who won 400 metre gold at the Sydney Olympics in 2000. She captured the hearts of, not just her entire nation, but of the world as well…We’re also told by Gemma, our driver, that a large salt water crocodile has been spotted on several occasions swimming in the harbour directly next door to our hotel…have to remember that one then… and I so fancied a plodge too. After some fishcakes and a glass of beer with JJ, it’s back to my room for some light reading. We’re only here for one night so I don’t need to unpack my entire bag, which is roughly the size of Doncaster and about which I’ve had much stick from all and sundry…

After soundcheck, which is at 4.30 and runs smoothly, we head back to the hotel for an hour and a half’s chill before the 15 minute drive back to the gig. This is probably the toughest gig we’ve done since being here…and, ultimately, the most fun to date too. The auditorium is again an all seater and my usual taunts and banter are met with stoicism and blank stares for the most part…there’s a guy in the front row from Sheffield who we’d met in the afternoon, he watched the soundcheck and is in the very front row right in front of me. I acknowledge him and he takes this as his cue to stand up and start jumping around all on his own in front of 1,500 people. The flood gates don’t exactly open but, slowly, we get people moving and on their feet and, at the close, we have the place rocking and it feels like a real achievement when we finish. The roar we get makes it all worthwhile and we all agree backstage that it was the most fun we’ve had…almost like starting again…again… I speak to Debbie later and again she says it was kind of like that for them too…we really were in the middle of nowhere and getting a result was really satisfying. After dinner in the green room, it’s back for an early night and our last internal flight of the tour to Brisbane.

Plane count- 10

Travel day  12th December 2012

It’s a 9am lobby call today and everyone is a bit bleary eyed as we make our way to Mackay airport, which is basically a largish shack. After a bacon and egg rol,l which is actually lovely, we board and fly the hour down to Brisbane. The crew are about half a mile away in another hotel and we plan to hook up later in the day for beers…see how it goes. Sometimes you get ensconced in your room, start to catch up on stuff and the time runs away with you. We’re flying home tomorrow after the gig so it’s a chance to get a few last minute bits of stuff for the folks back home…we’ll see…

I get a text from the crew saying they’re down on the riverside somewhere in a bar. That’s all the info I need…really fancy a drink. Dave’s in the bar (of course) and he agrees to come with me on the 5/10 minute walk. We find everyone quite easily and settle down for a few beers and to watch the world go by. It’s seriously busy and there’s plenty to see. The rest of the crew go off in a water taxi to the big wheel that’s located in the city centre and Dave and I stay with Gaz F for a few more. By the time they return we’re all seriously hungry and head off in search of sushi (leaving Gaz F and Dave behind to continue their drinking), which we find after a mazey walk around the city centre…turns out it’s very near the hotel and we went around the doors a bit to find it, but it’s worth it…

Gaz K and Tony Luby turn up and we discover several of Blondie’s crew and a couple of the band there too including Debbie…then the food starts to arrive…plate after plate of fish, chicken and rice…and plenty of hot sake…before too long we’re all stuffed and, with several of the crew bailing out for a relatively early one, I stay with Tony, Gaz K, Jim-our drummer, Tommy-Blondie’s guitarist and Cheryl their tour manager… We eat and drink some more then head out on the street for more beer…by this time I’m feeling a bit worse for wear and Gaz K is what can only be described as very merry indeed…we leave Tony and Jim sitting on bar stools in the warm night air and head back up the road to the hotel…tottering all the way…When I wake up in the morning, all the lights in my apartment are on, the windows open and, yet again, I’m fully clothed…oh dear…

Plane count- 11

River Stage, Brisbane 13th December 2012

This is another outdoor show located in one corner of the Botanical Gardens in Brisbane city centre, on the banks of the Brisbane River. It’s so close to the hotel that I can clearly hear the crews soundchecking from my room as I write this. It’s a beautiful setting, with palms and various other species of tropical trees dominating and Ibis flying around everywhere with their characteristic bent beaks and shrill calls. It’s an early show tonight and we’re on at 7pm. The place is absolutely packed and, as with all of this tour, save our own club show in Melbourne, it’s an all seater. I’ve pretty much had enough of this so decide to really let the crowd have it…and, lo and behold, they respond…after four numbers we have pretty much every last one of them on their feet. We’re super tight now and coast through the gig with style. All of Blondie’s crew have turned out to see us and various members of the band can be spotted too and it’s a nice vibe to finish the tour on…and also…we have a plan…

Blondie go onstage and instead of us leaving for the hotel, as we usually do, we hang around…they think it’s so we can all get together after the show to say our goodbyes and stuff and it is partly that, but, secretly, we’re going to stitch them up. The crew have gone into town, bought four of the sluttiest dresses they can find, along with four blonde wigs and some really loud make up… All four of us get dressed up. As Blondie go into The Tide is High, we conga out in front of them…JJ, me, Dave and Jim…and the place explodes…Debbie forgets the words as she’s laughing so hard and I help her with a line or two, then we go over to Leigh, the bass player whose birthday it is, and give him the works…after a parade around a bit more, I walk to the front and take my wig off just so the crowd know it’s me…another roar then exit…we’re packing up backstage and, when we go upstairs to say goodbye to the band before we leave, they’re all smiles and backslaps, taking it in the spirit in which it was intended…(watch it on YouTube here)

A pleasant surprise for Blondie in Brisbane…

After saying our goodbyes and exchanging phone numbers and email addresses, we go back to our hotel and pack to leave… Me, JJ, Dave and Gaz K are flying back later tonight, the crew flying separately the next day.

It’s been a great tour…both bands got along really well… (didn’t see too much of The Saints, who kept themselves to themselves) and we had a lot of fun. Giants is out here now too and momentum is building so we’re looking forward to a return within months if all goes well…have to see… Thoroughly enjoyed it here, made some new friends and caught up with some old ones too…all in all, a great success… A word or two on the journey home…

Gaz K, JJ, Dave and myself arrive at Brisbane airport at 00.30am for the 2.35am flight to Singapore…on arriving, we immediately see that something is wrong and our worst fears are confirmed when we’re told the incoming plane we’ll be taking is around two hours late… All our connections back to London (and, ultimately, mine to Newcastle) are all timed very carefully and, already, without even leaving the ground, we’re on the back foot…great. After a boring (and, it has to be said, boozy) three hours in the Emirates lounge, we finally board the plane and take off around 4.45am… We’re to learn over the next day and a half that this is the norm for Emirates these days…just because a flight has a time it doesn’t necessarily mean that’s when you’ll be leaving! I sleep for pretty much the entire way on this leg and we arrive in Singapore around seven hours later, disembarking the aircraft even though it’s the same one we’ll be taking to Dubai in just over an hour’s time. They refuel, let some passengers off, get some new passengers on, we all clamber back on and we’re off.

This flight touches down in Dubai around an hour and a half late, again after a seven hour journey…the flight crew making up a little of the time we originally lost leaving Brisbane late…you still with me? On landing, it’s already clear we’ve missed the connection to London…the arrivals lounge is chaos and, although they’re organised enough to have new boarding passes for a later flight for us (which we exchange for our old ones), we’ve already done 14 hours in the air and are only halfway… and, with fatigue kicking in again, it’s time to start making some decisions…especially for me.

Another day, another flight…

By now we know that I won’t be making my flight connection from London back to the North East, so we start looking at alternatives. I can get a hotel at Heathrow, or stay at JJ’s in London and get a morning flight the next day…straightforward enough but I really want to get home…when you’re travelling this far, home becomes the shining carrot and all you want to do is get there…any more overnight stays en route are to be avoided at all costs if possible…and I appreciate JJ’s offer…but we look at trains. There’s a late one at 2200 UK time (trying to keep up with the time zone changes is difficult enough, even for the mighty brain that is Dave Greenfield, but when you’re knackered, it can become quite the challenge… with everyone pitching in and confusing things even more…) which will get me into Newcastle at 0143…and we estimate that I’ll have time to catch it given that this flight is due to arrive in London at 2000, giving me two hours to get a limo to Kings Cross (when you fly business with Emirates they lay on a Chauffer to take you home…nice touch) so Gaz K books it for me and we relax a little… I’m going to get home after all…oh really Baldy? Nah!

As we arrive at the gate to board and the staff scan JJ’s ticket, a red light goes up and they take his passport and boarding pass off him and he’s asked to stand to one side…uh oh…it’s obvious it’s going to happen to me, which it does…and Gaz and Dave too… There are a few other people waiting, all folks from our Dubai flight connecting to London… Because we’re all on a later flight now, our passports have to be re-checked and, although they were together enough to issue us with new boarding passes, they haven’t done this part yet… I’m getting angry and bark at one of the ground crew…not my style at all but I’m starting to get really frazzled…and we finally board the plane half an hour after it should have left…but not everyone does and a few problems with immigration for some people result in another delay when the plane has to be stopped and some baggage located and taken off… By the time this plane takes off, my re-arranged train back home is starting to look in jeopardy already too…and I’m right… Unbelievable… now I’ve missed a flight and a train…

Tour itinerary & laminate

By the time this plane touches down in London it’s after 2100 and we already know I’m not going to get across London to Kings Cross in time. I finally snap at the baggage carousel and throw my toys out of the pram…albeit only for a minute and I feel silly but just can’t help it…I’m exhausted and I can see the sympathy on the knackered faces of the boys too. Gaz has clearly had enough and on getting to the limo lounge demands that someone drive me home…all the way to Sunderland! “We’ll gladly pay…” he says “…just get my friend home. You lot are responsible for this and we’ve paid a small fortune to travel with you!” It’s a longshot…it’s nearly 300 miles…but it works to my disbelief and, after an exchange of a fairly hefty wedge of cash, a car pulls up, a driver gets out (Bismark, that’s actually his name, and he’s from Ghana…my hero) and proceeds to drive me back to the north east of England… The sheer fatigue I’m feeling makes this leg of the journey almost surreal…like a dream…We leave London at 2150 and he has me home by 0120…beating the train I should’ve caught by nearly 25 minutes…I can’t believe it…I keep him talking about football for the last 20 miles as he’s struggling by then but he won’t come in for a rest or coffee as he has to get back. He says he needs to re-fuel and he’ll get coffee and some fresh air then…so I give him all the money I have in my wallet as a tip, we shake hands and he’s gone…a total star…I stand watching his car disappear around the bend and look up at my building…I’m here…it’s freezing (it was 29 degrees when we left Brisbane over 30 hours ago…it’s minus 2 here!!!)…but I’m home…and I suppose if there has to be a price for the fun we had down under, this was it…I NEVER want a journey like that again…can’t really complain though…into every life a little rain must fall…

Total plane count- 14

Thanks to Baz for another fantastic diary of the bands eventful travels around the Antipodes. Thanks also to Baz, Louie Nicastro, Matthew Gunter, Toby O’Pray and Erin Mason for photos and Adrian Andrews for the tour graphic…

Setlists for all eight gigs down under…


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