Inspired by the Minutemen song, Evil Monito’s “Tour Spiel” highlights the musician’s life on the road. Each week, we’ll check in with some of our favorite artists touring stateside or abroad. We’ll provide an intimate look into what it’s like to be packed in a van or waiting for a flight with the same people for hours on end. It takes a certain state of mind to survive any lengthy tour. Yet it’s the memorable experiences that make life on the road ultimately rewarding, if not interesting. This week we highlight the band, Editors, the Birmingham rockers who are currently playing to sold-out shows across the world. They confide in their affinity for greasy diner food and 10-pin bowling as they open for some of the greatest bands today in vast rock arenas.
EM: What is your favorite song to play live? And why?
The Editors – “Eat Raw Meat = Blood Drool”
The best song in our set at the moment, is off our new record and is called ‘Eat Raw Meat = Blood Drool’. Its our interpretation of a twisted pop song, and seems to be making the crowds move the most during our recent gigs!
I’m a big fan of San Francisco and have played in some truly brilliant venues with a magnificent history – such as the Fillmore, where if you sell out a show, they create these great one off posters for you. I have ours hanging in my house, it’s got a huge spider on it.
EM: What was the strangest town you’ve played in?
We pled in a town in Kentucky a few years ago, Covington I think it was called, and that was a generally a strange day. Tom and I went into a local themed chicken restaurant, and the girl on the till got all giggly and asked for our autographs. It was not because she knew of our band though, but because we had English accents.
EM: What kind of vehicle do you tour in?
EM: Who was your favorite band to play on tour with?
We played with REM on our first support tour for years, and it was so different to doing our own shows. We only played for 40-minutes in these great big stadiums with lovely backstage and catering, then watched one of the greatest rock bands in history do their thing whilst slowly turning ourselves drunk.
EM: What obscure band did you recently “discover” while on tour?
A band called Big Scary from Melbourne, Australia. They played some great Smashing Pumpkins-esque melodies over these dirty, dirty rock n’ roll tunes.
EM: What is your favorite venue to play in?
Brixton Academy in South London is the greatest rock venue in the world that I have seen. The room can feel as intimate or as vast as you would like it to, depending on the mood of the music, and it looks spectacular when you walk out onto its big old stage.
EM: While on tour, what is the band’s consensus as the favorite spot to eat? Where is it located?
Well, everyone is partial to a bit of grilled chicken, spicy rice and sweetcorn – so it isn’t classy, or too healthy, but we love a bit of Nando’s.
EM: On nights off in-between shows, how do you like to occupy your time?
We enjoy 10 pin bowling, so at some point on the upcoming tour we will challenge the touring party to some competition. It should be a healthy night off, but we always end up drinking too much and feeling less than fresh in the morning. Couple that with our limbs aching like we have been in a fight, it makes the following day rather more difficult than it should be.
EM: If you or the band had to agree on one “must-read” book for the long trip, what would it be?
I am terrible at keeping my nose in a book, so the other guys don’t ever bother telling me what they are reading.
EM: What is the most interesting thing you’ve found or bought while on tour?
When we were just out in Australia, and someone threw this brand new Aussie rules football on stage. I squeezed it into my bag and brought it home with me, as I’ve wanted one since I was at school when I used to watch crappy Australian teen dramas – all the cool kids used to play with the bright red oval ball.
I like a bit of rock personally. And I’m never far away from putting on a Deftones record, but as a group, we can rarely beat a bit of Talking Heads.
(Picture to right is the Talking Heads album, More Songs About Buildings and Food)
EM: What’s the most unique piece of equipment on your tour?
Chris uses a Suzuki Omnichord on one of our tracks. That usually has some people in the crowds scratching their heads as to what the funny kidney shaped, beautiful sounding bit of kit that he is stroking with his fingertips.
EM: What comfort items are a “must” when embarking on a long tour?
I just got some awesome slippers. They are like fluffy bear booties, and they will be joining me everywhere until they fall to pieces. There is not much better a feeling, than playing a sold out show, having a steaming shower and getting into your comfys with a glass of wine on the tour bus.
EM: What is the hardest thing about being on the road?
It has been said a million times before, but being so far away from loved ones is really the hardest thing. That, and watching football.
EM: What’s one amazing location that you fantasize about playing live?
I cant believe we have been right around the world on a number of occasions and not even stepped foot in South America. I would love to experience the passion of Sao Paulo or Buenos Aires. Playing on a tropical Island doesn’t really appeal – the crowd would be way too relaxed for our music.