America (LA)

June 2, 2009

So LA…been here for a few days now. It started with a show at the famous Troubadour. Supported the fantastic Black Moth Super Rainbow and School of Seven Bells. The next day had a show in Costa Mesa at the Detroit Bar. Had a really good night. didn’t sell as many cds as the troubadour show but the crowds reaction to the set was really good.

Then….a day off! We ceased the opportunity to do some touristy things. i.e.. visited the Griffiths Observatory and had about half an hour in the Science Center.

We didn’t go mental that day as I had a very important session the next day…which one I hear you ask….oh just KCRW’s Morning becomes Eclectic with Jason Bentley…yeah that’s right…they’ve had…like…Coldplay, Thom Yorke, Beck…to name a few.

It was ace. everyone was really nice.

Got a flight to Milwaukee tomorrow. Driving to Chicago for a gig at the Shubas Tavern.

(to be continued)


M83 Support Tour (San Francisco)

May 29, 2009

Arrived in San Francisco without too much trouble. found the hotel and pretty much passed out after eating a big KFC…(if anyone reads my twitter they’ll know it came with a ‘Biscuit’ i.e. a ‘Scone’. weird and random hey?!
anyhow. got up the next day and had two breakfasts in a place called Mel’s Drive In. Then waddled over to a Last.fm interview.
This was my last show with M83 and it was at The Mezzanine. A fantastic night was had by all I think. I certainly had a great time.
In fact the whole tour with M83 was awesome. firstly I got to see a band i genuinely love play six shows in a row. secondly i got to hang on their tour bus! (also first time on a tour bus)

I now have the last few American shows before me. The Troubadour in LA this evening…it’s on Santa Monica Boulevard. and i can’t say that street name without sounding like that Sheryl crow song!

Just been to Amoeba Music off Sunset Blvd and bought a huge stack of cds

Digitalism’s debut
Spank Rock – Yoyoyoyoyo
Simian Mobile Disco – Attack Decay Sustain Release
I Love Techno 2008 (mixed by Boys Noize)
Moderat new album
Simian Mobile Disco – Tits and Acid EP
Cassius – 99 (a classic)
Beast – (don’t really know why I bought this album…on first listen it doesn’t sound that good….the description was Electro + Hip Hop….tempting but unfulfilling)
and A-Trak’s Infinity + 1 Mix album (cos it features me on it!)

(to be continued)


M83 Support Tour (Portland to Seattle)

May 27, 2009

So after our pit stop in Redding we arrived in Portland, OR to play the Hawthorne Theatre.

The next day M83 were scheduled to play the world famous Sasquatch festival in the heart of Washington’s beautiful gorges. As this was effectively a day off for me and Paul we took in the sights and watched a few bands. Namely, The Walkman (who were amazing!), TV on the Radio (whose sound was less than amazing), obviously M83 (who in my unbiased opinion were on top form and gave a particularly special show. That’s when I took this first video.

Then it was the highlight of my day when I got the chance to see Deadmau5. Oh my lord was it brilliant. That’s where the second video comes in. I know the quality of these two videos is not great, but hopefully the mood of the what was going on translates. I haven’t felt this good at a dance gig than when I saw Justice at the mean-fiddler in London when they did their album launch party.

After the spectacle that is Deadmau5 it was time to get back on the bus for another night on the road. This time we awoke to find ourselves at the Canadian Border. An experience to say the least. for starters we arrived at the entry for cars instead of coaches. So we had to do a three point turn on the border, then head back into the land of the free for a few miles down the road where we would eventually join the (insanely) long queue to re-enter Canada. After three hours we got ushered on our way and into Vancouver. Now I don’t know what I was expecting, but I was surprised. It was so clean and spacious. I could understand why they have strict borders. I wouldn’t want to share Vancouver with just anyone.

The show was at Richards on Richards. The crowd were fantastic. It really felt like everyone was having a great time. there was even some impromptu dancing from Morgan on the stage speakers.

This was where (for a day or two) we would leave the company of M83 and the womb like sanctuary of their tour bus for a little road trip of our own.
I basically had a radio session with KEXP and an industry showcase for Play Network in Seattle the next day. The next morning we loaded up the hire car and with me behind the wheel having just inhaled my breakfast waffle we set off for the birthplace of Grunge.

I’d like to say the border crossing went smoothly but I’d be lying. we were pulled up for some random unexplained admin error and had to sort out some paper work in the border office. After telling us that it was because my visa wasn’t swiping. the guy manually entered it into the system, stamped our passports and then charged us some Yankee green for the pleasure!

We arrived at the Play Network showcase with minutes to spare and I got to work setting up. It was basically a show for the people that plug music to starbucks, gap and things like that. I did about four songs before heading off in the direction of KEXP.
It was a real pleasure to be asked to do a session for these guys as they’re rated very highly amongst true music fans.
The session was for the DJ Kevin Cole and it went without hitch…which was nice!
I quickly packed up after a ceremonial photograph and a free t-shirt (on behalf of the person sitting next to me on the plane I thank you).

So as I just mentioned I’m on a plane. San Francisco bound. where tomorrow I shall be rejoining my French compadres with our final show together at the mezzanine.

(to be continued)


M83 Support Tour (Solana Beach)

May 23, 2009

A few hours drive took us into Solana Beach. Lovely beach it is too. Not many convenience stores though…walked about half an hour looking for a shop to buy some shower gel from. in the end found a place but they only had a few bars of soap left. I know! I felt like i was in back to the future (the one where he actually goes back to the past).

(M83’s Soundman checking the system with Erland Oye)

So the gig was at a place called the Belly Up. I didn’t think my show was any good due to the fact that I’d developed a cold from the air conditioning on the tour bus. Spoke to some people at the end who seemed to enjoy it though!

We then had a big drive through the night to get to a place called Redding. We arrived at midday and oh my lord was it baking outside. I was already a little red from the ‘Shower Gel Trek’ so first thing I did was get some sun tan lotion. factor fifty…no messing about. As this was effectively a day off my soundman Paul and I decided to go watch a film. We settled on Star Trek which we thought was pretty good.

Next gig is the Hawthorne Theater in Portland, OR.

(to be continued)


M83 Support Tour (Pomona via Bruges)

May 21, 2009


M83 soundchecking in Pomona, originally uploaded by jamesyuill.

So hello everyone. I’m on tour in the US with M83 at the moment. Risking my stomach contents by writing this whilst the tour bus is in motion.

It all started with a trip to Belgium. Actually this might work better in note form:

The date 18th May.
Rod Thomas and I left west London at 9am (driving)
Arrived at Bruges about 2pm
Played show
Left venue at 10.30pm
Arrived back in London 1am on the 19th
Rod drove me over to east London
I arrived at my girlfriends flat at 2.30am
Woke up 7.30am
9am put deposit down on trendy east London flat (more about that later)
Arrived back in west London 11am
Left for airport at 1.30pm
Flew to America at 4pm

We got to LA in the early evening of the 19th (i know…we gained 8hours…I felt like I’ve had three Tuesday the 19ths!). We had the night off before meeting up with M83 and their tour bus at 1pm the next day.
After driving for about an hour or so, we arrived at the venue for our first show. The Glasshouse in Pomona, CA.
I didn’t get time for a soundcheck as the were some technical difficulties with M83’s hardware. But thankfully all was sorted and they started letting people through the doors.
I went on stage a little after half eight and as I walked on I heard a few people mention my name to their friends (which was nice). I must say I wasn’t expecting many people to show up to my set, but was pleased to see almost 2/3s of the final crowd already in the house.
I think I could have played better, but I had some lovely comments from people after the show, so i guess it didn’t sound too bad!

More photos on my Flickr account…link should be on the right somewhere

(to be continued)