From the deepest bowels of a white Chevy child molester van, The Dusty’s on tour with teen pop sensation The Bravery, bring you tales from the road- think Oregon Trail with eyeliner.
And now The Dustys….
We played the license plate game on the way across the midwest to the east coast.
Ames Iowa has about four Hard Rock radio stations, that play either 80s hair metal or new recordings by washed up classic rock bands. If Stevie Ray Vaughn were alive today he would live in Northern Iowa.
Track: Dangerous Little Signs (From The Sticky Blood EP)
Cut by Rasheed of CromagnonJazz.com
Breakfast in the morning after the Minneapolis show: apples, peanut butter, and regret for partying so hard with intimidatingly friendly Lutheren people.
Chicago finally seemed like a real city, stores crammed so close together around the Vic Theater with signs in a hundred languages. The theater was huge and sounded like a dream, but we had to jet right after we played to go play an afterparty with our sideproject band No Lover and the amazing snotty pop-punk IL band the Safes at a bar called the Darkroom in the Ukrainian Village part of town.
Darkroom was dark.
The Exit we were looking for off Lakeshore was elusive, but we circled the museums til we made it out of the city and on to Detroit.
Faygo was dripping from the walls of St. Andrews Hall because it is the home base of a little old hip hop group called the Insane Clown Posse (who we’ve been accidently mirroring the whole tour, playing before or after them in various stunned towns everywhere….we even saw their caravan at a truck stop: two tractor trailers painted with evil circus shit–presumably full of orange drink?).
Gold For Cash joints and rebuilt art studios lined the route back to our friends place in downtown Detroit. He gave us a drunky historical tour of the demolished stadiums and dirt-cheap artisan spaces springing up.
We poured Hot Sauce the BBQ he spread out for us in his art deco home, right next to the BBQ joint he owns. Mindblowingly spicy and good after wearing ourselves out on stage.
We irrigated the heat with local wine and jelly beans.
Ko from the Dirtbombs and head of the Kokonuts lived right next door and came over at 3am to give us advice about getting into Canada. We tried not to geek out while she informed us about not hiding merch and being polite to the customs agents even if they toss your laptop on the cement.
Last stop before Canada: Duty Free for cigarettes and gas…we stuck to the total truth about what we had in the van and what we were doing and breezed right through.
245 Kilometers to Toronto, whatever that means.
Nine looney dollars for a liter of gas, which works out to: ummm.
Rural Ontario is like a Coen brothers movie about emptiness and isolation. But Toronto was alive, and in a European way just slightly more fashionable and antique than an American city somehow.
Parking behind the club in the pouring rain, moving amps and keyboards with laconic British stagehands, playing in front of a sparser crowd while coughing into the mic–our bodies and souls felt shit heavy from too much booze and smoking and hard travel.
Quality Inn, Buffalo. A day off spent in Dennys looking at video of people dancing as we play, remembering why we’re pushing ourselves around the countryside and why we exist.
Rochester to New York City in the morning. We split up into various corners for the night, Park Slope, Williamsburg, Staten Island. Corner Creek whiskey is delicious, only available in Brooklyn, and medicinal.
Terminal 5 is a converted dance club with neon 80s railings on the Upper Balcony reserved for Very Important Persons with VIP Passes like actor Justin Long who had to wait forever to get in because the guy at the ticket counter didn’t recognize him. We played to what seemed like a massive sea of blank faces. Did they hate us? Did they even recognize us as musicians or did they think we were a still life painting called Four White Dudes Gyrating with Electricity? But as soon we were done 15 teenager gaping at us like the Stones just touched down from planet 1964 mobbed the merch booth by the door. We ran out of M, L, and XL.
Did the woman who got naked during the Bravery’s encore and humped a random stranger on the dancefloor until she got kicked out have a Y chromosome? It was hard to tell under the plastic surgery. Then after the show late late late on the way across the river, right at the height of the Brooklyn bridge, Peter remembered we never got paid so we had to tear ass back through Manhattan to Hell’s Kitchen past saturday night madness everywhere on either side before they turned out the lights.
From zenith to nadir is moment by moment on the road so far…we have no idea what is coming next.