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#1 2010-11-05 00:00:17

Rikard Sjöblom
Registered: 2008-06-27
Posts: 188

Tour diary (in retrospect)

We’re back home! It feels kinda strange actually and it was tough leaving the tour bus to go sleep at a small hotel in Andernach in the south of Germany this Saturday. That is, instead of opening a new beer and start chatting away with one of the other fifteen wonderful dudes on the tourbus. Touring with Pain of Salvation has been f*ckin’ great! I can’t really put it any other way..

14/10 - 2010

It was the first time I met any of the guys in PoS, but David and Magnus had met a couple of the guys before (on the afterparty for Progressive Nation '09 to be precise). We went to Eskilstuna, or were driven actually by a friend of ours, with our gear and merchandise and stuff. We met up at Balsta Musikslott where the big red bus from the german company Red Car was parked and I phoned Daniel to ask them when they'd be there. He was still at home, but he called the sound and light engineers Alfred and Barni who showed up shortly after that to help us load the stuff into the trailer. PoS had been on a couple of dates in Scandinavia prior to this so they already had their stuff in the trailer, which was jam packed, so there wasn't much space left for us to put the stuff in. Somehow Alfred and Barni managed to get it all in there though! After that we stepped inside the bus and checked it out for a bit. We'd travelled with Red Car before, on the 2008 tour with The Tangent and Ritual, but this bus was slightly bigger and with a better lounge on the second floor. We decided to sit down, have a beer (thanks Barni!) and wait for PoS. Pretty soon they showed up, with their girlfriends/wives and children. We said Hi and all that and pretty soon the bus was rolling out of Eskilstuna towards Hamburg...


15/10 – 2010
Hamburg, Germany

The first gig was at Markthalle in Hamburg and it was a big place. Looked a bit like a very dirty swimmingpool, with steps leading down to a rectangular space. My voice had been sort of crappy for a long period so I thought the gig went a little so-so, but I think we played pretty well actually. It was the first time I heard PoS live that night as well (I am almost ashamed to say) and they were great! Their music really comes alive on stage, they have a lot of energy and Daniel is an amazing singer.

I don't really remember what songs we played that night, but I know we played "Awaken the sleeping", "The Hunter" and "Destined Solitaire", and I think we played "Without You" and a new one called "Green Waves" as well. What I don't remember is which song we had in the middle, could have been "Until You Comply", cause that's the set we played a whole lot of nights on this tour (we were practicing for a film recording of the show, at De Boerderij in Zoetermeer, Holland).


16/10 - 2010

Zeche in Bochum, Germany. A very nice venue actully and the catering was awesome. About ten meters of food on two tables.. And that was breakfast! Dinner was another sucess, with a whole lot of different grub to fill our empty stomachs with!

The set this evening could have started with "Into the Night" coz I know we played it, but I think we actually started with "Awaken" and "The Hunter" and then played "Destined", then "Into the Night", after that we may have played "Harmony" actually, but I'm not sure! I'm not too good at remembering this, should have written it down! It's strange though, coz I think we finished the set with "Without You" and "Green Waves once again... but that wouldn't have worked with all these songs.. Anyway, until someone disagrees with me, I'm gonna say that we did big_smile

Or was this the night when we skipped "Without You", because we ran out of time...?

...Could we have skipped "Awaken" for "Into the Night"?? We might have actually. Then it would have been:
Into the night
The Hunter
Destined Solitaire
Rou..     Ah, to hell with this!

Another funny thing was that as soon as we'd finished playing the show we had to clear the stage and leave, because the club was having a disco! Really strange..


17/10 – 2010
Uden, Holland

Back in Uden at De Pul. We'd been here before, in 2008. When we came to the place in the morning.. ehmm.. mid day somewhere.. OK, when we woke up! Anyway, when we were loading the gear there was still some sort of LAN party in the venue with some young kids and their computers. They looked pumped up on Jolt Cola and candy so we left them alone and started to rig the stage. Let me explain that a whole big portion of the day consists of sitting around when you're on tour, and while we were doing just this our manager Rock and his girlfriend came by (they live in Holland) and visited. They couldn't stay for the show but we went for a walk and discussed some stuff regarding the recording we were gonna do in Zoetermeer, since Rock is the one who arranged that.

We all like Holland and I had actually forgotten what a nice place De Pul is, I really like it! We played a very good show IMO, probably one of the best on this tour actually! I think it was basically the same setlist as the first night. I had been drinking nothing but water the entire day and I noticed that my voice was feeling much better thanks to it and the other guys were on fire!

We all started to gain some favourites among PoS's songs as well. My personal favourite was, and probably still is "The Perfect Element".


18/10 – 2010
Aschaffenburg, Germany
In Aschaffenburg we played at Colos-saal, we’d never been there before with Beardfish but we actually had a gig booked there earlier in 2010 which was cancelled. Nice venue, both Robert and I appreciated that you could smoke in the lounge upstairs 
In this place they had big posters of people’s faces on the walls and two of these were of guys we’d met before – the singer/guitarist and guitarist of Lazuli,  Dominique Leonetti and Gédéric Byar! Kind of fun actually, and they’re both good looking guys so I understand why they were photographed for this wall of fame 
We did the town, to some extent, as well. We had some time so we found a record store where I bought a t-shirt and a used copy of the DVD “Willow” – don’t judge me, I like adventure movies ok!
Magnus bought two Procul Harum re-issues and an album by Kran, don’t think the other guys bought anything though. We met up with the guys from PoS at a music store (filled with terrified personnel who carefully scrutinized every step we took!) where Daniel bought a Fender Telecaster which he then used throughout the tour on selected tracks.
The gig went well, I think.. For some reason I have pretty vague memories of this night, I mostly recall things that happened during the day! I think we played the standard set this night as well.

19/10 – 2010
Paris, France
Our night in Paris… hmm, well it was strange! At La scene Bastille the staff were not all that helpful and since we had a French person in the group we also overheard them talking about the shitty backstage area and laughing behind our backs about how the hot water would only last for one person… Nice!
My guitar died a couple of times during “Green Waves” this night, in fact it had done so the night before as well come to think of it.. (Turned out later at Z7 in Switzerland that it was just the cable going from the guitar to the pedal board that had given up!).
The gig went well, then we did our usual drinking binge for a couple of hours while listening to PoS and smoking too many cigarettes. Then when we jumped in the bus to leave Paris a strange thing happened: the narrow streets turned out to be a little bit too narrow for our big bus, so by a street corner, 100 meters from the venue we got stuck for about half an hour! There we were, 16 people and a busdriver named Andre, trying to get this bus through an incredibly narrow passage and going back and forth, Andre steering with all wheels possible while we stood outside trying to guide him using the rearview mirrors, with no help from the drunken people standing beside us on the street (man there were a lot of people out that night and they were not happy that we’d blocked the street!). Cars were honking, people were yelling, one old fart stood there screaming the same thing over and over again, apparently he was saying “just move it” or something.. yeah, well – do it yourself if it seems that easy! By this time the police had shown up and were trying to guide traffic and help us out. Anyway, it ended up with us having to push the damn trailer a couple of blocks down, past the venue again, onto a slightly wider street where we could hook it on to the bus (which had followed us back on the street) again and leave! We celebrated with McDonalds on a street corner (Royal TS anyone??) and we were all quite proud of ourselves that we’d managed to solve the situation! All in all I think it brought us closer together, haha!
20-21/10 – 2010
Z7 in Pratteln, Switzerland! We were here in 2008 with Tangent and Ritual and I remembered it as one of the best places I’ve ever played. Excellent staff, good PA, good monitor guy and to top it off: fantastic catering! Mmm…
Well, we came here on the 20th and the concert was on the 21st so we had a day off. What to do? We visited IKEA, being Swedes and all. The strangest thing in that place (coz naturally we ate lunch, or breakfast rather, there) was that they served fries with the meatballs… HELLO!! Crazy people, cooked potatoes is the shit, ok! In protest I asked for steamed veggies with my meatballs instead. After a few days on the road you can’t stand all the fried food anymore. We bought some beer at a local supermarket and then resided to the bus where we drank it all up 
The next day it was concert day! Now, Z7 is a big place. It almost looks like an old flight hangar or something and I think they take well over 1000 people, probably 1500. The stage is big and the sound is good, lots of lights as well. We played a good show I think.. I remember “Destined…” being extra good this night, something about the general metal vibe of that place made us go. And I think my growling part was extra brutal that night actually. We had a lot of Beardfish fans present this evening, it was evident while on stage but we got proof of it afterwards as well. They came up to the merch stand and talked to us and of course many of them wanted autographs and pictures and stuff and we always think that’s fun so we had a good time. PoS did a jam session during their encore, with Daniel on drums and Leo nowhere to be seen. Then all of a sudden the music breaks down into a nice 6/8 ballad and he comes on stage to sing “Nights in white satin”! He did it very good and we all cheered him on from our vantage point behind the merchandise stand. I was sober this night by the way… This means it was actually very good, haha!
Excellent showers at Z7 as well.
22/10 – 2010
Milan, Italy
Milan was new to us. We’ve been in Italy before, but that time we played in a town called Vogheera in the middle of nowhere (very nice tiramisu btw). This time it was, as I mentioned, in Milan. PoS and Zoltan (the tour manager) had talked about the fact that if we wanted to sell merchandise the venue wanted 25% plus VAT of what we sold for. What the hell? We said that this sounded completely nuts to us. Well, it didn’t turn out that way. When we came to the place we were told that we couldn’t sell merchandise at all (since we hadn’t signed any contract or so, I guess) but instead the venue had their own stuff to sell. Hmmm… Sounds pretty illegal. We were so pissed off by this but we couldn’t do anything about it. The police didn’t care apparently. Anyway, we opened up shop outside the bus, standing in the doorway with the whole lounge filled with merch, asking people what they wanted.. it was crazy, haha! I heard someone asking for Beardfish merch and I hadn’t taken anything into the lounge. “I heard that” I shouted and grabbed the keys to the loading compartment, jumped out of the bus, opened the door and started a shop of my own. Sold quite well in only a few minutes actually 
What about the concert then? Well, it was great actually! The fact is that we were still soundchecking when they let the crowd in (the promoter actually apologized for this later on, and for a lot of other things, including the merch situation. Also, the people who worked in the venue were in fact very nice to us and the pizza was good!) so we had a whole bunch of people running towards the stage in the middle of “one-two-one-two… testing, testing…” and a guy behind us (the stage manager) yelling “Go!! Start playing!!”. Crazy! So I explained the situation to the youngsters in the audience before we ripped into a very aggressive version of “Awaken the Sleeping”. In fact I fed of the anger I felt over this gig and spewed it out on the audience… in the form of wonderful, heavy and angry progrock!
Oh, and we hadn’t found a way to get home yet either. We talked about renting a bus in Hamburg (where PoS were changing the bus before going to England), drive to Sweden and leave it there. I talked to Thomas Waber, our record labels executive and he said he’d check it out. Good.
23-24/10 – 2010
Budapest, Hungary
We came to Budapest in the early afternoon of the 23rd with a day off ahead of us. PoS checked into a hotel but Beardfish decided that we could stay in the bus for the day (as long as we had some toilets available nearby, haha) so the driver dropped them off at the hotel and then took us to some venue (apparently Budapest’s biggest concert arena) where he parked the bus and then we looked up a McDonalds nearby, using our biological McRadars 
Then Robert, Jonte (Oh, I haven’t introduced him, have I? Jonte came along to help us out on the tour and also to work as a stage hand for PoS. A very nice guy, indeed) and I stayed in the bus all day long, drinking beer while watching movies. David and Magnus went downtown to check it out and they came back good and drunk later in the evening and we watched some more movies.
The next day we were at the venue when I awoke. The venue was… a… boat! OK, cool! A38 is the name of this place and I must say that it’s probably one of the coolest venues I’ve seen. A big boat where they arrange concerts. They’ve kept the interior (and probably even increased the feeling of a ship with various details such as a big engine in the middle of the dining room) and the actual concert hall was really nice! This place had the same vibe as Z7 when it came to the crowd, coz there were actually a whole lot of Beardfish fans present. I talked for a long while after the show with a couple of them and they were very nice. Our show was really good this evening, probably my favourite of the entire tour actually. We played “The Summit” from The Sane Day as the last song and it felt great playing that one (first time in five years!). We also played “Into the Night” if I’m not mistaken. All in all, I really liked Budapest and I hope we’ll play that ship again one day!
25/10 – 2010
Bratislava, Slovakia
Well, Bratislava was an exciting place as well. Majestic is a big ol’ metal venue as far as I can tell. Zoltan was electrocuted by the powered shower and had pain in his left arm and shoulder the rest of the day. Pretty big place actually and they had these big raisers on each side of the stage (where Daniel and Johan stood in the last song of PoS’s set). We tried to rock it out as much as possible and I think we did a good gig. We played “The Platform” from the upcoming album as well, which was fun! Cigarettes were really cheap there.
26/10 – 2010
We woke up in Prague, Czech Republic. Man what a nice city! We actually spent most of the day walking through town, which was really pleasant. When we came back to the venue we just checked the sound, had dinner and then we played the show, which was excellent btw!
We still hadn’t heard anything regarding the journey back home.
27/10 – 2010
Day off in Leipzig, Germany. Well, we did the town with Beardfish minus Mr. Hansen plus Mr. Gildenlöw! Walked around in stores all day, ended up in an absintheria.. Ooops! Absinth is strong stuff and I’m not particularly fond of it so I had a beer. We all shared one called Chateu Cannabis though. Then we had to go back to the bus only to find out that it wouldn’t leave for a couple of hours later, so we went to an Indian restaurant and had dinner.
28/10 – 2010
De Boerderij in Zoetermeer, Holland is a very nice place where we’ve been a couple of times prior to this tour. The staff is f*ckin’ awesome and our manager (who IS dutch AND was there btw) thinks it’s the best venue in Holland. He had arranged for this show to be filmed, as I mentioned earlier, and he had also rented a hard drive recorder for the sound so we recorded the entire show (also played a bit longer this evening, about an hour I think). If it’s good enough we’ll use it!
This day we also found out that Thomas had arranged a bus from Hamburg, yay! We also found out that the current bus won’t be going to Hamburg, what the f*ck!!! So back to emailing (on my iPhone…grrrr!!) with Thomas. I asked him if we could pick the bus up in Andernach (the final gig) instead with the same deal. Two hours later I received an email saying it was OK. YEEEEES!!!
29/10 – 2010
Back in Belgium for the second time in October (we played the ProgResisté Convention at the Spirit of 66 a couple of weeks earlier), but this time in Louvain-la-neuve – apparently a city built in the 60’s for students, kind of cool huh? Absolutely one of the best venues on the tour! An old farm house with lots of wooden interior and stuff, really cool.. We played a very good show and got to hang around with some people that we’d met in Belgium before, several people actually! It was a very nice evening. Also promised two persons that we were gonna do “A Love Story” from The Sane Day on the next gig, coz they were coming there too. My initial thoughts were “Jeeez, haven’t played it in several years and I don’t know the lyrics!”
30/10 – 2010
Andernach, Germany
Andernach, the final day of the tour for Beardfish. This town was pretty small and we had a hard time figuring out how people would first of all want to go here, and second how they were gonna find it! But they came! Quite many, at that.. We decided that we should do something together on the show with both bands, but we never said what… haha! More later..
When we started playing this set we started with “Destined Solitaire” for the first time, ever! It felt like a great opener for the show (and it also got some people nervous.. no no, not the audience, haha!) instead of “Awaken the Sleeping” which we’d opened with throughout the tour. After that Magnus fell into the drum groove of “The Hunter”, but he thought it sounded a bit strange although the rest of us didn’t notice a thing. He looked back and saw Leo behind his drumkit, playing along with him! I continued presenting the fishes as I usually do in “The Hunter” and when I came to Robert I saw some hands sticking out underneath Leo’s drum riser.. So it turned into “Robert Hansen on bass!! …and Pain of Salvation, obviously…”! Yes, indeed it was. They crawled out from underneath the riser, Daniel carrying a big bag of candy which he ripped open and then started throwing its content into the (very) enthusiastic crowd. He landed a bunch of em on my keyboards as well (It’s alright, I forgive you Daniel). It was all great fun and we played the rest of our show with big stupid grins all over our faces!
When we were finished and came off the stage, we were met by the PoS guys and Daniel handed me the lyrics to “Aquarius” from Hair. “Let’s go up and do this together” he said. Well, nobody knew the song all that well, but we’d been listening to the album on the bus almost every night of the tour so we went for it. Daniel and Magnus on drums, Per on organ, Robert on bass, Fredrik played keys, Johan played guitar, David played guitar, Leo played roto toms, and I sang lead and played guitar! It turned into some kind of jam session but we managed to get through the song in a somewhat decent version.. Or maybe not! But it was all in good fun 
When PoS played “Nights in white satin” we ran on stage in the final chorus and sang with them, all four of us – so that was our big stage rape, quite mellow.. We had plans to incorporate the end of “Kingdom of Loss” into “A Love Story” during our own set, but we felt it was a bit too much since they were gonna play it themselves.
Later that night, when everything was over and we’d cleared the stage and so on, we had a big farewell party in the bus. PoS was going to England to support Apocalyptica for a couple of shows and we were going home. Everyone was happy and we were of course listening to the Hair soundtrack, screaming our lungs out to the chorus of “let the sunshine in” (sorry Andre, hope you could sleep!).. It was tough leaving the bus, but we had to catch a couple of hours of shut eye to be able to drive the 20 hours back home the next day. So we hugged it out and then we said goodbye and walked away.
The drive back home went well, apparently. We left Andernach at 11 o’clock in the morning and we rolled into Gävle around 7 in the morning the next day. Magnus left his jacket, with keys and drivers licence and credit card on a gas station somewhere outside of Hamburg. Other than that, it went OK.

This tour was awesome.

Tomorrow we're going to Trondheim in Norway to headline a festival. Great!



#2 2010-11-06 09:46:41

From: Spain - Belgium
Registered: 2010-11-05
Posts: 17

Re: Tour diary (in retrospect)

Hello there! Congratulations for the great tour! I was one of the very, very, very fortunate people that could attend three Beardfish gigs the same month… hard to explain, just… AWESOME. The first one was in the Spirit of 66, it was an incredible feeling when we first saw Robert amongst the people!! We managed to repeat last weekend… Louvain and Andernach. I think I can’t choose a favourite one! Ok, it wouldn’t be the Spirit of 66 because it was too hot there, that was hell! I think it would be Louvain, the sound was perfect, we met more (spanish!) Beardfish fans there, right by our side in the venue, and were very surprised when we found David behind the merch stand! We got some autographs for our albums and pics and stuff and FUN! But the next day in Andernach was great too, with “A love story” (you people of your word, thanks! sorry about the lyrics, but someone told me once that this song is just passion… and it went perfect), the tremendous “candy” moment with PoS coming out from under the riser… And yes, it was a very decent version of “Aquarius” (which actually is my favourite drink tongue).
Hope you have a good time at Trondheim… and that Magnus has his jacket back!



#3 2010-11-06 21:09:00

Registered: 2009-04-04
Posts: 110

Re: Tour diary (in retrospect)

Oops, I thought I already posted a reply...
Anyway: thanks a dozen for the write-up!! It was awesome to meet you guys again twice! I'll be wearing the blue shirt proudly!
Hope the video turns out okay - would love to see that somewhere (maybe a bonus DVD for the upcoming album?)!

Keep prog alive - see it live!

My music list



#4 2010-11-08 12:10:38

Registered: 2010-01-27
Posts: 50

Re: Tour diary (in retrospect)

Awesome read! Wish I could see you guys, but even Trondheim is/was a long way Are you playing more places in Norway, or just Trondheim? Oh and did Magnus get his things back? big_smile



#5 2010-11-10 22:31:35

Registered: 2010-10-31
Posts: 10

Re: Tour diary (in retrospect)

Opss... what a pity, the Magnus´s lost jacket. That wouldn´t have happened if he was wearing his famous housecoat. wink
Thanks a lot for the diary, for those awesome perfomances, for A Love Story and for all the time that we could spent with you guys! Counting the days for the upcoming album release and... please, a new tour! Near Spain or wherever, it doesn´t really matter tongue



#6 2010-11-11 05:20:51

From: Albury, Australia
Registered: 2009-12-26
Posts: 51

Re: Tour diary (in retrospect)

Thanks for this, sounds great! I wish I lived in Europe sad  seeing you guys is on my list of things I must do in the next ten years tongue
Can't wait for more news about the new album, or any of your videos of these gigs!



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