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Tombs Tour Diary Part 4: The Long Road Home

Brooklyn-based experimental metal band Tombs just wrapped up a month-long North American tour in support of their latest record, Path of Totality (Relapse). Guitarist/vocalist Mike Hill kept a journal chronicling all of the action, and we'll be rolling it out in a few installments. In his fourth and final entry [read 1, 2 & 3], Hill encounters right neighborly Texans, long stretches of road and the brutal traffic of NYC.

6.18.2011        Dallas, TX       20:36

It’s been a series of mishaps since yesterday. My Blackberry crapped out and I have no way of contacting anyone. When I went out the van, I noticed that we had a completely flat tire and a burned out headlight. Morgan helped me out by patching the tire for me and gave me a hand-pump. The concept was that I was going to pump enough air into the tire to drive it to a fuel station, fill the tire and drive over to Pep Boys to get the necessary repairs done. I started pumping; it was hard going. I was about halfway there when Morgan’s neighbor came out and offered to pump the tire up with his air compressor. Props to good Texans! It took a few hours to get everything sorted out at Pep Boys. We were a few hours into the trip to Dallas when the directional signal popped out. You just can’t win on some days.

Last night was killer. Austin never disappoints. Kill the Client played and totally crushed. This band called Skycrawler opened the show and I was blown away by them. It was a great night.

6.19.2011        Somewhere    23:00

We’re in a Super 8 somewhere in Mississippi. We played at Euclid Records earlier today with Haarp; the whole thing was over with by about 20:00 so we hit the road. It’s a long run to Nashville so the plan was to get a few hours in before we stopped. It’s relatively early, so I’m hoping to get some rest, get an early start so we can get to Nashville. We ordered some pizza and now we’re settled in.

Dallas was cool. I recognized one of the two people from our last show in Dallas. This time around, it was a much better scene. I’m starting to mix up Dallas and New Orleans in my head, I can’t keep it straight. I guess it’s too many miles in too few hours. It’s about to get worse.

I feel myself shutting down for the night.

6.20.2011        Nashville, TN 17:45

I like it here. We’re playing with our friends, Dawn at the Little Hamilton Collective. Jesse and Ivan were instrumental in setting up our first show in Nashville back on the Tombs / ASRA tour. We’ve played pretty much every show in Nashville together since then with the exception of the date on the Kylesa tour a couple of years ago.

We’re going to leave after the set and start the long journey back to New York. This tour was short, I feel like we just started getting into the vibe and now it’s over. We’re only going to be home for a short period of time then it’s back out on the road.

We hit a Starbucks before loading today; I got online to check if there was any news from McCash; nothing so far. My phone is dead so I don’t know if anyone had been trying to get in touch with me.

6.21.2011        Brooklyn, NY            19:20

We drove though the night, 18 hours to get back. We had the bonus of hitting the NY/NJ traffic during the final hours of our journey.  Welcome home. Carson and I switched off; we logged in a few hundred hours each and took turns driving. It was brutal.

Coming back, even from a short tour is strange. It’s like fast-forwarding into the future. I wish I was still out there, the apartment doesn’t seem like a friendly place right now. I feel more comfortable with the constant motion of the road and the challenge of playing each night. There’s very little here, it’s like the volume on life has been turned down and I’m just killing the hours before leaving again. Things feel different, but at the same time there is predictability, a repetitiveness that feels like an icy hand around my throat. Maybe I just need to get some sleep.

The show was good last night. Dawn were awesome, every time I see them they sound a little different, they evolve, try out new ideas. This band called Black Majesty played that totally crushed. I was talking to the guys from the band afterward and they said that they’re going to change their name because another band called Black Majesty exists already.

It’s quiet here. It’s the first time in a few weeks that I’m alone and don’t have anything to do.

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