handsome new members, flashy new instruments, bangin’ new tunes, and (perhaps most importantly?) a NEW VAN.
fuck that old van.
we’ve missed you. have you missed us? if you have, then you’ll have noticed, throughout the course of your incessant pining for bartok-related news, that we haven’t blogged about nothin’ since like a year and a half ago.
all that changes… NOW!
o, but where to begin? the handsome new members, i’d wager. we’ve got this man named dan nie-der-haus-er playing bass, and he looks like if you made a stone carving of eros itself and then slapped a beard on it. the man handsome. i haven’t really noticed whether he’s good at bass at all.
and crisco. crisco! on the drums. who looks something like a young johnny depp but… happy. without the evil that permeates the souls of the depp family. and again, being easily distracted by good looks, i have not noticed whether he is a good drummer, or is even playing the drums at all. it’s entirely possible that he just stands there, smoking cigarettes, looking cool.
but enough about those dummies, let’s talk about bella’s bartok!
we’re adventuring again. gather ’round my children, and i shall impart to you the epic tale that is… the march tour!
sing to me of the band, muse, the band of twists and turns, driven time and again off course, once they had plundered the hallowed heights of troy. many cities of men they saw and learned their minds, many pains they suffered, heartsick on the open sea, fighting to save their lives and bring their comrades home. but they could not save them from disaster, hard as they strove— the recklessness of their own ways destroyed them all, the blind fools, they devoured the cattle of the sun and the sungod blotted out the day of their…
wait… wrong story… sorry.
our story begins innocently enough with the piling-into of a van, which does not yet have a name, and for whose eventual name we are accepting suggestions (email@example.com). we headed north for portsmouth, new hampshire, to regale the book and bar with the sounds of various parts of our bodies hitting up against, like, these pieces of wood and metal. i believe you humans call it “music”.
here is why we love the book and bar: we are nerds. taped-up-glasses-wearing, think-“j.d. salinjerk”-is-a-funny-thing-to-call-someone, argue-about-the-implications-of-the-silmarillion-for-the-whole-car-ride-there, card-carrying nerds (the card is a magic the gathering card). so when we arrive at this wonderful place which is half-bookstore, half-bar, it feels a lot like heaven. i don’t think we even said hello. just kind of wandered straight into the fiction section, each returning with literally armfuls of books, like way more than we could read in one sitting, and each a fine, fine beer in the other hand, and buried our heads in books. i’m glad none of us took a picture of this particular scene; we’re s’posed to be rock stars! pathetic.
i’m not even sure if we played music that night. all i can remember are the plot details from a particular p.g. wodehouse novel.
wait… it’s coming back to me… oh yeah! we did play music, two sets of it, and we rocked so hard that all the books flew off the shelves and hit a bunch of people and we played so loud that everyone’s beers and heads exploded. how could i have forgotten?
we were kindly offered a place to stay, and being that i had been to this house before, i quickly scampered upstairs upon our arrival, to a secret princess bed that i knew was hidden away there, to entwine myself deeper into the plot of the wodehouse novel. i’m pretty sure everyone else stayed up and partied and played more music. as for me, though, i’m in this game for the books, and only for the books.
the following morning saw us eat wildly nourishing food at the friendly toast and then head for worcester, ma, where we would play at the firehouse that evening.
it took us a minute to find the place, because it was disguised as, you guessed it, a firehouse. we did eventually see through all the deception and arrived in time for mitch from What Cheer? Brigade, who lives in the cooperative household/venue that is the firehouse, to make us tasty, tasty dinner! what a friggin’ guy. we boogied down HARD to sets by flame n peach and the liberated waffles and sons of an illustrious father, and then ourselves (what! one can boogie down to oneself! nothing wrong with that!), all the while passing this really big, kind of absurdly big bottle of whisky around amongst us. in my memory it was like the size of a toddler. anyway, we finished it, and this had the following effect. asher made friends. dan made friends. amory made friends! jesse and crisco? yes indeed, the socially lubricating effects of alcohol allowed them, too, to make friends! and me? well, first, acoustic mastermind matt fox played a quiet, sit-down-in-a-circle-type set after we played, and it was the kind of thing where people weren’t really talking or even whispering, or coming in or out, or moving around a lot, the type of thing where you became the center of attention if you had to get up and go to the bathroom. and there i was, in the front row, the room spinning, kind of wobbling back and forth, too afraid to stand up and run away for fear of those eyes upon me. so i just kind of tried to play it cool, but i kept falling over and making like a WHUMP sound against the floor, and then righting myself, and then repeating. i’m pretty sure everyone was looking at me. don’t get drunk in a quiet, acoustic setting, my friends. just… don’t.
then we all slept in a big pig-pile. it was cute.
the next morning, mitch directed us to miss worcester, the best diner any of us have ever been to. you ever just feel like life is perfect and the universe is aligned and god has chosen you to be a vessel of sheer and unadulterated delight? miss worcester.
then, to brooklyn!
if you’ve followed our adventures in the past, you will recall, not without some quiet ache of disdain, the things that have happened to us in brooklyn in the past. if you have not, i’ll just say that whenever we go to brooklyn, either our van falls apart into all its constituent pieces in the style of looney tunes, leaving us suspended in midair, as if sitting, for just the briefest of moments before we, too, collapse into the rubble, or a lesser band member is killed by pigeons, or we spend all our money on like artisan pies or something. traditionally, bad luck.
but this time! this time! we made it, brooklyn.
we played a set at palisades, again with sons of an illustrious father, and there were one million people there, and everyone went crazy and levitated and did all that type of magical stuff which, as you’ve no doubt experienced at some point, happens at a bella’s bartok show.
sons oaif were kind enough to let us stay with them! it quickly became one of those nights that just makes no sense whatsoever, and everyone’s rolling around on the floor and laughing and making weird drawings of each other and then suddenly it’s like seven in the morning, and everyone’s like, “gee we should have gone to bed at some point.” in fact, now that i think about it, there was a little too much rolling around on the floor and laughing… i have a suspicion that everyone did some kind of awesome new drug and didn’t invite me. what the hell, guys? buncha j.d. salinjerks.
we did get to bed for like two hours, though. and not before i ate someone’s chips. i’m sorry, whoever you are, i’m sorry i ate your chips. they weren’t even like whole chips, it was the end of the bag and they were all broken into little pieces! i’m sorry! i had to come clean. it’s been eating away at me.
so we got bagels (obviously), returned home, and had today off. i spent mine drinking guinness (or is it… “genius”?), listening to june and the bee, and writing a blog entry.
i suggest you do the same, dear reader.
– Fancy Kerrigan