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- Crows Over Germany Tour 2007 -

I’m writing this tour report on 17th February, in the night between Saturday and Sunday, sipping some vodka Gorbatschow in order to refresh my memory.

It’s been almost two weeks since we sat down at Helsinki-Vantaa airport in the very morning of February the 2nd. Ewo and Marco told us what there is to come and what to expect from our next ten days in Germany. Butterflies in the stomach and a good vibrating in our bodies we met the Diablo guys in the smoker’s cabinet and immediately these boys turned out to be our soul mates. Then it was the time to move in to our BlueOne airplane taking us to Berlin.

All our backline equipment had gone to Berlin with different transport companies during the last week and we all were hoping this really had happened. There was a Coach service Night-Liner waiting for us at the Tegel airport which was supposed to be our home the next ten days. At the same time we got to know our tour manager Basty from Contra Promotions - a great guy indeed!

The first real setback was at the Columbia Club Berlin when we opened the trailer where our backline was supposed to be. All Cinnari’s cymbal and snare cases were gone. Fuck! Ewo started to solve the problem and the things seemed to be so complicated that we didn’t have any other choice but to use the Diablo drummer Heikki’s cymbals for our first gig.

Fortunately the Diablo guys are gentle and they loaned us their drum mic selection too. Surprise, surprise the local techs couldn’t follow our technical-rider. That turned out to become common since.

After the first gig, which went fine, we relaxed in the buss with our vodka Gorba and speculated about some horrific visions what could still happen on this tour and how to possibly avoid them. It’s become obvious that the equipment and all the other promised stuff might not work the way we pictured it. Catering is something which worked out better than you could imagine. In Germany they never run out of meat… there’s always meat everywhere and in the restaurants if you order beef, it’s so big you can never eat it completely. We tested this all the way.

About the nightlife in Berlin, there’s a special bar for the Priest fans called Halford. Three meters high rubber Halford figure at the main door invite customers inside. The owner, the local Halford look-alike with all the same tattoos and outfit gave us sooo many cayenne-chili drinks that hardly anybody of us remembered where the hell the buss was.

In Hamburg the undersigned was so worn out that he had to pass the sightseeing. Almost everyone else went shopping and checking out the “display window girls” at Reeperbahn. Marco introduced the boys to a local delicacy, currywürst. God knows what I missed!

In the Knust club Hamburg, Ewo got the information that Pecu’s equipment had got lost in Germany and that they would probably be at the Frankfurt sorting center. Until we got them back, we were to survive with Diablo’s cymbals. The “Fuck you meter” was getting higher - if Pecu broke some of the Diablo cymbals, we would be the ones to pay.

Great feelings from the Knust gig and after a “few” drinks we started to night drive to the next city. The next city was Köln and it would be our first day off, so it was party time and the party got started in the morning.

When you are really drunk there’s always something funny going on. For example we went to the Köln cathedral and Janne wanted to do an echo test. Howling in the church is not one of the smartest things to do. Pecu went indoors with his Stetson on. Fortunately the local church member corrected the boys friendly.

Understandably the next day gig at the Underground club begun a little bit painfully, but both bands’ gigs went great and the crowd was satisfied as well. Then happened the classic, Half of us got sick. Marco, me, Tommi and Rainer caught a flu or some kind of allergy reactions. Marco went to see a doctor and got antibiotics and the rest of us took some tabs from the local drugstore to ease our conditions. A couple of the days later I noticed there are feather pillows in the bus and they are really killing me with the air condition. My eyes are full of matter in the mornings and it’s really hard to breathe. Okay, the show must go on.

Matrix club Bochum, built in the misguided sewer tunnel complex was our next destination. All the walls of its backstage were covered by tour ppsters of many famous bands and some of them not so famous. However, the fact is, it’s really windy at the top and from the top only way is down. There were poster of Magnum, Motorhead, Saxon, etc, those hundreds of thousands or even millions sold bands that are doing gigs in the same places as we are doing now. The world is strange place to live.
Everything worked out perfectly, the gig was hot and we did a lot of autograph sessions. After our gig there started some kind of a halloween party or a party for abnormal people. All the guys were wearing rubber skirts, make up and so…interesting?

Somewhere down the line the Diablo name changed to Bablo (Finnish folk singer) and our first encore Rider Of The Last day to Rainer Of the Last Day. Strange things happening…

After the München Metropolis, tinplate hall gig, we got our worst night sleep ever. We didn’t have to drive to the next place until at eight in the morning, so the buss stayed at the Metropolis yard the whole night and they started a rave party one a clock in the morning. The whole buss vibrated by the bass sound and the noise was enormous. And somebody had to work next day...

Diablo did their 40-45 minute and we did our 70-75 minute set. The Diablo guys wanted us to do Warhead every night. Marco and Tommi preferred to save their voices a bit, so Warhead was exceptional. This led to an interesting conversation between the bands. We were kind of polite and cut out those Warhead last section samples by Hitler out of the song.
But the Diablo bassist’s name is Aadolf, so what could we possibly do? We gave them a proposal. If would introduce him as Horst Bulau on stage, then we would play Warhead. Actually they did that…quite many times since, but we played Warhead only twice, if I remember correct…sorry boys.

The next day off was coming and the road to Stuttgart was open. A really beautiful city. Gigs at Röhre went great and the both bands did lots of fan meetings and as much pr. as possible. Ewo and Basty were in good mood all the time. Merch was selling fine. It was really great to be on the tour. This was what we had expected.

A basic morning routine went pretty much like this: At nine o’clock the driver says: “coffee break 30 minutes pause!” Which means you have to fucking hurry up to take a dump, wash yourself up and order the coffee. With this system the tour goes on and on, so Hirsh club Nurnberg went by its own. The both bands gave their best and the last gig in Ascaffenburg was to take place.

Colos-saal was the first place where all the tech-rider requirements were handled they way they were supposed to. Our techs Mikko Tegelman and Sami Jauhiainen were really satisfied for the equipment, those guys are the best of the best. They had handled the two bands for eight gigs in a row, with more or less good equipment and 20 minute break between the bands. Real professionals, thanks to them!

Two of Hezekiel’s cymbals got broken, so after this tour we have to pay him those. This was expected. Shit happens! This little city was exciting and there were nice shopping streets to buy some souvenirs to bring home. Specific shops, gothic, oriental, Lord of the Rings, Egyptian and so on…

The last set for the little audience was actually one of the best. The fan meeting was great too. There were people who had been with us on three Germany gigs, thank you! You know who you are. With sad feelings we had to take more than a 600 kilometer trip against the night to Berlin to catch our flight back to Helsinki.

There was a terrible hangover at the Tegel airport. Too many equipment cases to carry, but we had still one more gig to play, the sold out Tavastia club. The Helsinki was waiting.

In Helsinki, we gave nostalgic farewells to the Bablo boys and went straight to Tavastia. The tour was done...

On the tour we used more than 32 litres of Gorbatschow vodka…More than 1000 bottles of beer... Hundreds of cigarette packages…An incalculable amount of mineral water and lots of exclusive products.

Okay, Tommi was in such a bad shape that he needed to go to see doctor and we hoped he could do more than a hiss on stage. He had to go straight from the doctor to the hotel to take a rest…and then in to hell.

Marco and I did some interviews about the tour, then it was time for the sound check and waiting.
In Finland you have to go on stage after the midnight, in Europe you start around 9 or 10 pm.
Our national system sucks!

After the great gig for the sold out house, most of us went to Helsinki night life, but me and Janne went to hotel to take some Gorba and had a pleasant conversation about the past weeks.

Next day we took the flight to Kuopio to have a three week pause and then shall the next Finnish gigs begin.

Yours, Zac

Visit also the gallery for more live pics from the tour Jiri Rogl