NEURAXIS TOUR BLOG #3: VOCALIST ALEXANDRE LEBLANC ON ASSHOLE BOUNCERS, WHY TEXAS RULES, AND “SPECIAL” COOKIES
We loved Neuraxis’ 2008 release, The Thin Line Between, so much that the opportunity to have the band do an exclusive tour blog for MetalSucks was too good an opportunity to pass up. Below, check out vocalist Alexandre Leblanc’s latest entry; you can read guitarist Rob Milley’s intial entry here, Alexandre’s last entry here, and Alexandre’s review of the Oscar nominated film The Wrestler here. Enjoy!
Portland, February 6th
After a killer set, we went to the bar for a drink with Tiffany and her friends. She has been friends with the band since their tour with Necrophagist hit Portland in 2006. She always invites us to her place and spoils us. Anyway, I got my drinking ticket denied because I wanted a white russian or a 7up/Southern Comfort (favorite drinks of mine), so I got a whiskey and coke… more like a glass of whiskey with a bit of coke for color. We ended up at her place for some food, smoking (it’s Oregon after all) and eating some special cookies made just for us. The sad thing is we have to leave by 3am for a long long ride to California.
Quote of the night: ”Wow, they barely taste like cookies.”
Santa Cruz, February 7th
Finally in California…We are received by our friends from Decrepit Birth (super-friends from the Faceless tour) in a very pleasant night compared to all the snow and rain we got so far. The show was awesome except for the countless fights. This core vs. metal thing is getting old. I saw a 130-pound kid getting his ribs crushed by a kick. He could barely breathe. I had my ribs hurt in wrestling and it’s not good. Takes several weeks to completely heal. And all that for what?? When is it gonna stop?? One day, a kid will get his neck broken and die in a show. Then what… concert ban, metal censorship, police at every shows??? Anyway we ended up at KC’s (Decrepit Birth’s drummer) for another ”chill” session with him and Bill (their singer)…
Quote of the night: ”Is there some cookies left???”
Hollywood, February 9th
The Whiskey-A-Gogo is a legendary place on Sunset boulevard. If you don’t know about it, do some research. We get there all excited. Me, Max (DI bassplayer) and Ben (DI Guitar player) start to workout. We all brought weights and training equipment. It’s motivating when there are other people who wants to stay in shape and pump some iron. In the middle of our workout, a security guy kicks us out of the backstage area to open the doors (WTF???). I’ve been a bouncer for four years and I never heard of this! We have to stay outside for like 20-25 minutes. Completely useless. Later, Melvin (DI soundman) gives the local sound guys our monitor sheet. They refuse it. They say that they are professionals and that they don’t need it. Don’t get me wrong, it sounded great out there, but on stage… whatever. Our set was still killer. Afterwards, I talked with other guys from the tour and they all told me how the bouncers at this venue are assholes even if you’re in a band (or especially if you’re in a band). Seems like this venue is legendary after all… for how bad the staff is.
Quote: ”This place have the worst staff ever” (Actually, I heard it several times)
Tucson, February 10th
We drive all night to get to Dave’s place. He’s a tour manager who endured our French-Canadian asses on the Faceless tour. Anyway, he’s awesome. We ”chill” with him and abuse his shower before getting to the venue. DI was doing their soundcheck with no singers in sight. Still affected from the afternoon session, I stepped on stage (as a joke at first) to do the vocal check. Eric (DI) seemed both amused and amazed by my imitation of both singers (Melvin… check…1-2… check). After the set, I head out to the bar and realize that both Tommy (our drummer) and Dave are drunk like hell. We went back to Dave’s place (Tommy passed out in the van on the way) for another ”session,” the rest of the cookies, and Tropic Thunder. A perfect ending for a perfect night…
Quote: ”…you went full retard. Never go full retard.”
Albuquerque, February 11th
Me and a drunk guy (whose name I forget) renamed the whole tour. The Montreal Ass-Salt tour. Featuring: The Asthma-rifle (like a gun that makes you cough), Neurasses, Carnifesse (fesse is butt cheek in French), Beneath the Ass-ache and Despieholetron. Just a funny though to share…
San Antonio, February 13th
Playing the White Rabbit is always fun. Probably one of the best venues on the tour. It’s my second time there and Texas being one of my favorite state to tour, the night is bound to be great. I think like 500 people showed up. On this night, our tour is merging with the Abigail Williams tour. Being great friends of ours (from the Faceless tour), it’s good to all reunite. The show was awesome (of course). Everybody kicks ass on stage and in the pit. I got to train again. Actually, I am training more and more on this tour. I got offered a wrestling match for March 20th and since I haven’t wrestled in almost a year (too much Neuraxis), I’m looking foward to be back in the ring…
Quote: ”Texas never disappoints…”
Plano, February 15th
A huge metal fest with 3 stages and over 25 bands… bound to suck. At least Lina is here to cook us BBQ like on the Faceless tour. Like a tailgate party. We play at 4 o’clock after 2 emo rock bands…what am I supposed to do??? This ”metal fest” has more emo rock and hardcore than metal. It sucks, but, surprisingly, people show up as we play. They seem to appreciate the headbangs. I see a couple metal shirts in the crowd. They all give me the horn back. My job is done… After the set, more workout, shower, BBQ, chilling and a great Texas night… Only to prepare us for the 22 hour drive to Florida.
Tampa, February 17th
Nice weather, good mood. This show is bound to be good since we had a great reaction last time when we played with the Faceless… wrong!!! Except for the 15 people in the front, nobody gave a damn about us. No reactions beyond the 15 people in front. I was trying to break the ice but it was just miserable. Earlier, I heard that this show was non-smoking (it is a smoking place usually). When I asked the crowd if they were pissed because they couldn’t smoke, everybody yelled ”yeah!” Biggest reaction of the set. Anyway, I got to meet Daemon Benton (Glen Benton’s son) and I witnessed a weird fight. Some dude, super-hammered, who was an absolute Ron Jeremy look-alike, was getting punched by a sexy girl who was super pissed at him. He was laughing and telling her she was a whore. She was getting more pissed. At one point, I realized I was getting pissed at the guy, too. He was such an asshole. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one because some other dude started to fuck him up big time… Ok, being an ex-bar bouncer, I couldn’t believe that the bar’s bouncers didn’t do nothing until then. Cops showed up not long after, probably arrested ”Ron.” But when I used to bounce, I would have sent that guy home really fast, probably knocking him out if he continued. Now, the cops have to show up for nothing at a metal show, adding to the sometimes bad reputation… lame!!
Jacksonville, February 18th
Maybe 50 people showed up… but they were 3 times more people into it than Tampa. I dedicated ”The Apex” to a crazy dude in the front who was moshing to our set by himself, and to Carl, a guy from Quebec city who stays in Florida. He hadn’t spoken in French for months so he was having a good time being with other French-Canadians. We left after the show because nobody invited us to crash and with a big $30 merch sale, a hotel is out of our budget. By the way, our merch sales are terrible on this tour. So we leave for the next city, Augusta, Georgia. It’s pouring rain like hell with lightning joining the party. After a while, we stop for gas and the clerk tell us there is some tornado alert. We stop for a few hours, sleeping in the van… Big rockstar life.
Quote: ”Too tired to remember…”