Hello From The Gutter

Well we made it back from Canada safely!

We had a great time in the snow and ice over there, even if the extra curricular gigs didn’t go to plan. Looking at the times for the Wacken battle of the bands show on the first night it was obvious none of us would be awake at the start, let alone the finish.

Things were looking better for either of Saturday’s show choices, then I got a bout of what was probably food poisoning and spent virtually 24 hours in my hotel room, also missing the Iron Maiden pre gig party being held right across from my hotel room. I uncomfortably made the main event, which was absolutely superb, but more on that later.

The final show on Monday did indeed get swallowed up by our attendance at a Toronto Maple Leafs ice hockey game as expected. Overall an enjoyable jaunt over to Canada which the wife and I have vowed not to leave so long till out next visit.

Tuesday was a long travel day and just seemed to go from bad to worse for the bulk of the day. Waking up around 8am Canadian time and finally flopped onto my own bed 24 hours later. The evenings flight was greeted by a gaggle of wailing children who, so it seemed, cried at the top of their lungs for the entire seven hour flight. A 50 minute tube ride across London was followed by a two and a half hour train trip back “up north”.

Any one with half a brain would have stayed in bed for the rest of the day, not me. Awake four hours later to head to Manchester to see New Jersey thrash legends Overkill playing was on my agenda. What I wasn’t banking on was a motorway incident turning all my local roads into miles of car parks. Leaving home just before 5pm to catch another train an hour and fifteen minutes later was almost scuppered when it took almost two hours to pick up a friend who lives less than 5 miles up the road!

Thankfully I made the executive decision to catch the latest possible train to make the show worthwhile, meaning we’d only miss ten minutes. The only thing that went in my favour on Wednesday was the bands were running late, if they didn’t come up straight after the previous nights gig they would also have encountered the same motorway blues. We missed Polish band Vader, but caught all of Overkill.

With no album to really promote on this tour their set was devoid of all but one song from the latest release, but in a few weeks they are playing Horrorscope and Feel The Fire in their entirety to celebrate 30 and 25 years respectively, so their nineteen song set was heavy on those two releases in preparation for Germany. So there were a few songs I’d never seen live and others that I’ve not witnessed in some time. The night was rounded off with Elimination and their cover of a song originally done by Canadian punks Subhumans, which they have firmly turned into their own anthem.

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