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Australia 2006

Day 6: Tuesday 5th September 2006, travel to NZ 

We all got up at 5am and Stu collected us at 5.30 to take us to the airport. I think Stu had also stayed at the hotel just so that he could give us a lift. Throughout our stay in Melbourne it had been Stu who had looked after us. He had basically set up the WASTED festival, promoted it and was even the stage manager. He was a fucking hero and worked his bollocks off. Whatever Daz had paid him it wasnít enough. Without Stu there never would have been the festival and we will always be very grateful for everything he did for us. Whilst I'm at it I'd like to also thank Joel, Danni, Kate, Fiona, John from Bastard Squad and everyone else there who made our first ever visit to Australia such a pleasant and memorable one. Last but not least I'd like to thank Paul Ledster who, although he wasnít there in Melbourne, helped Daz and Stu set everything up.

Limo service

After saying our farewells to Stu at the airport we got on the plane to Auckland, New Zealand.

We arrived at about lunch time and we were met by Kev McAvinue the promoter of our two gigs there. He had brought with him his partner Dave who just happened to own a fleet of limos. So for the first time ever we were picked up at the airport in a limo. You can just imagine how flash we all thought we were. We were driven to our hotel which was actually a motel where the five of us had our own chalet. Almost straight away Kev took me and H into town to do a radio show which went well. Back at the motel the early start had caught up with everyone and we all crashed out. 

At 6.30 Kev came by to take us all to a BBQ at a house near his. The house was owned by Don, the lighting tech at the Kings Arms and also there, was Kevís wife Dom, Sandy our sound engineer for the NZ gigs and Simon our new driver. Plus Vaughn from the band D3. It was a relatively laid back affair and very enjoyable. I think the only person who got pissed was Don and when he started played John Denver at high volume we took that as our cue to leave and go to bed.

All the band together lounging on the limo
Peter and the Test Tube Babies (and a flash car)

Day 7: Wednesday 6th September, Auckland

Simon came and picked up me and H at 8.45am and we went and did a live radio show in town. It was very funny. We then went for a coffee and visited the coolest shop/tattooist in Auckland - Illicit HQ. We put all the staff on the guest list and blagged some free shirts. 

At about 11 we went back to the motel to pick up the others and Simon took us to the highest point in Auckland - No Tree Mountain. After a bit more sight seeing we all went to Simonís local pub The Thirsty Dog where we had lunch and blagged even more free shirts while Aggro checked out the five sex shops opposite. 

The one thing that we had all noticed driving around Auckland was that there were posters for our gig everywhere. Kev had certainly done a great job on that. At 2pm we had a TV interview to do for ALT TV so we walked down to their studios. The interviewer was a very attractive young lady called Je tíaime and the interview went well. Afterwards Simon dropped me back at the motel while the others wandered around town.

In the evening me, Walnut, H , Kev and Dom went to another bar in town, the C.A.C. bar where we met Simon later.  After a few more beers back at the motel we all crashed out.

Day 8: Thursday 7th September, Auckland/Wellington

I had to get up early again to do another live radio show only this time by phone to a station in Wellington. At 3pm Simon and Kev came and picked us up to go to the airport. After four days without a gig it was time to go to work again. We met Sandy at the airport and then the eight of us all flew down to Wellington.

Travelling in style - the Bentley

At Wellington airport we were met once again by Dave the limo man who this time picked us in a Bentley. He drove us into Wellington and to the venue - The Bodega Bar. 

After the soundcheck I went off with Simonís mate Steve to his tattoo parlour. Actually his tattoo parlour was in fact the national tattoo museum of NZ. There he very kindly re-coloured my Dennis and Gnasher tattoo for free. He did a fantastic job.

During the tattoo H, Aggro and Walnut turned up and I think them seeing me having mine done spurred them into getting some of their own done later on in Auckland. After a quick tour of the museum we all went back to the venue which was by now full. 

Peter and Steve the tattooist   Peter's tattoo

Eventually it was time for us to go on, for our first ever gig in NZ. It was a great gig. The band played well (though in my opinion Melbourne was better) and the sound, thanks to Sandy, was superb. However, right in front of me in the audience was a complete dickhead who thought it really funny to keep pulling the mic cable from me, spit at me, and grab hold of me every time he could. As there was no stage security at all I had no option but to put up with it and hope that heíd either get bored or piss off to the bar. He did neither. In the end I had to warn him that if he kept it up I'd kick his fucking head in. 

So on the very next song as soon as I was at the front of the stage, he grabbed hold of me and pulled me into the audience. The rest of the band probably thought that I'd meant to do it but I was fucking livid. On the way down, with him under me, I managed to punch him in the face at least once before the audience pushed me back on stage. Youíd have thought that would have been a lesson but for the rest of the song he kept up his obnoxiousness which pushed me right to the limit. I laid into him again but somehow only managed to cut my finger open. The next thing I knew there was blood everywhere. Guess it must have looked pretty punk. H also had to deal with some knobhead who threw a glass at him so by the end of the set we were pretty pissed off.

The thing is I was more worried about my tattoo getting infected than anything else. Steve had wrapped it in cling film and said that I had to keep it clean. Rolling around on the floor at a punk gig was probably not what he had in mind and neither did I.

After the gig we went back to the tattoo museum which is where the after show party was. Simon ended up behind the bar dishing out pints of Black Russian which is about the last thing I remember.

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