Buz Reports From The Road


From: Buz
Sent: Tuesday, March 24, 1998 9:40 PM
Subject: !1st Update from the Road!

Hello All

The first Chrome show in over 15 years went well at the Troubadour in Los Angeles.

Turn out was "modest" but most notable was Buz'z Mom and also Quentin Tarantino (didn't know he was a fan). Certain "numbers" were exchanged between he and Helios after the show (who knows where THAT will lead).

We are now in Austin, TX two days after SXSW and after an all night drive session of 1300 miles from L.A. fueled by lots of caffeine, Speed Metal, Punk Rock and will power. We are now resting up before a little practice (yes we do that) and on to more road food (Yummm, Denny's again!).

More info as it happens or I feel like writing about it.

Questions, comments, flames, idle chit-chat or dirty pictures appreciated.


Date-posted: 28-Mar-98 10:24:44

Well, we've rocked Texass....

Relatively full house at Emo's, Austin. GREAT town. LOTS of music. Friendly people. Drunk girls dancing on stage. Small "pit", even. Fun times for all. Really good "Wraps" (we call 'em Burritos in The-Mish.) from some S.F. expatriates (thanx Michele & Andrew).

The Orbit Room in Dallas last night started bad...continued to be crappy and completed (for a change) by sucking. Creeps working the club (NOT the owner, however), creeps in the club, creeps AROUND the club (ahhh PuNk RoCk), fistfight between two club employees (yes...employees. See the last sentence.), stage the size of a postage stamp (who'd they think we were...Cream?). And to top it off...the great Chrome had a lousy gig. Tried our best but when the keyboards get knocked into the players lap, the song tends to loose it's "momentum". Sold a lot of merchandise, though. Go figga?

The good news... The A/C is fixed in the truck (sorry CA, it's been clear and warm the whole trip (knock-knock) and somehow, all of our hotel rooms have been across from good Indian food (no, not Native American...although that sounds good, too). Ya gotta love America!

On to the 8 hour drive to Memphis.

I wonder if Elvis's ghost will be there.... I still won't to put him on the list.

Date-posted: 29-Mar-98 15:49:44

After another crazy 9 hour drive session we arrived in Memphis. After another 1.5 hours of following WRONG directions we got to the Young Avenue Deli (yes...deli). A total yuppie bar with pool tables and ...Yuppies.

Fortunately, about 11:00 the opening band came on and the whole club personality changed.If you ever get the chance to see "Mr. Quintron", do so at all costs. The guy lugs a full size Hammond organ around the country and is the best thing I've heard in many years. Sort of a combination of John Spencer, Tom Waits, Fats Waller and Sid Vicious.

We had a great show for not too many people but they were all BIG fans. We didn't get off the stage until 04:00. The promoter made really cool posters and we all signed many autographs and sold a lot of Ts and CDs.

Out truck is starting to hiccup a bit. H took it in and we are now in the worst Travel Lodge on the planet (not the place, the employees. They're all named Apu...no kidding).

Well, back to channel surfing for strange public-access TV. .....Oh my god ...I just saw Colonel Sanders dancing on a Lawrence Welk rerun.. There is a God.

Date-posted: 6-Apr-98 21:54:50

OKAY!!! We've finally got a few days off with some really cool people in a really cool place!

Cat's Cradle - Carborro, NC................................
Very nice club, but unfortunately not too good a turn out. We pulled off a good show and some great folks drove up to 4 hours to come see us (sorry y'all had to come so far but we're glad you did!). Hey to Sarah and friends.

Ottobar - Baltimore, MD......................................................
Well, we tried. Club WAY too small for an all encompassing band like CHROME. Some audience members actually applauded. Special thanks to the "dancing girl" up front. Unfortunately the club filled with smoke from a construction site next door being worked on at 01:30 for some Satanic reason and we had to cut the set a little short. Baltimore....Get some alternative (the ORIGINAL meaning) radio stations!

Nick's Upstairs- Philadelphia, PN........................................
What a media event. At least 4 camcorders going with two audio decks. Look for the bootlegs soon....and PLEASE send us a copy! Fun place. Good crowd. Good pizza. Blew up our second P.A. of the tour. Thanx to the sound guy for getting us through the show. He hit my MUTE switch and scared the poop out of me... I thought my amp died. Special space-jam version of "The Jaw".

Coney Island High - New York City, NY................................
Ever seen Soylent Green? Or that episode of Star Trek on the over populated planet? Well that's NYC (and you guys know it too!) No insult intended but it is a little overwhelming after being in the great wilderness called "America". What a club. Doormen with guns (no that's not a band name, but probably should be), soundman (I mean soundBOY) with no concept of "sound", just painted stage completely "fuming" us out. Does EVERYBODY in NYC smoke? Can't wait to go back. BUT... H broke a string and amongst other technical difficulties a ripping version of "Open Door/Locust Door" was attempted by me and Aleph. And a damn good try, too.Great show, though. BIG appreciative crowd. Nice folks. Hey Raymond...

Euclid Tavern - Cleveland, OH.............................................
Wow! Whatta gig. We were given the extreme honor of performing with the Solar Fire light show. Man, these guys know how to put on a light show. Digital video should be duped soon, too. MANY BIG THANX to Big Jim, Scotty and the whole Hawkwind posse in Cleveland. Haven't had this much hospitality since ...HELL, I don't know WHEN I ever had this much...maybe we NEVER had this much hospitality. Anyone in the North East area needing the raddest light show from the coolest people, contact Big Jim at jmfinity@now-online.com. Helios had to tune up so CHROME performed a impromptu jam: Trillion Eyes (?) We've now had  some sleep (a good 14 hours) and are now fully recharged. And Nova and Tommy got a lot of Thrifting in. Hit Shattered Records if you're in Cleveland.

Up next...
Sudsey Malone's - Cincinnati, OH.........................................

Date-posted:   08-Apr-98 21:03:31 -0700

I-71 Southbound listening to my new (old) Gary Numan CD bound for Cincinnati, Ohio. On our way to a radio interview and show at Sudsey Malone's.

Ohio, the home of Pere Ubu and Devo (and my friend ...hey Kathy.) Big, flat place with people REALLY into music. Did I mention it's flat here?

Fun show at "Sudsey Malone's" last night. Cool place to do your laundry (which we did), drink some booze (which we did) and Rock-Out (did that, too). Small but appreciative crowd. Deaf sound man (...Too loud buddy, even for us...) Some friends made really neat Chrome lion-head pins out of etched metal (Ummm ...did you guys see a "Pussy Galore" poster go anywhere???). Hopefully we'll have some to sell at up coming shows. BTW, we have Kosik posters, T-shirts and 2-CDs for sale for all you coming to the next shows.

Had our first bad weather of the tour (knock-knock). A massive rain storm hit as soon as we are ready to load out last night. Once we got soaked getting the trailer loaded, it stopped of course. But by the time we got back too our plush "Hotel" (spelled T-R-A-V-E-L L-O-D-G-E), there was a strong tornado warning in effect (no wonder there wasn't anybody on the streets). Us Kalifornia kids don't know what to do in a tornado. Isn't there supposed to be some old lady riding a bicycle who rides up to warn you to get in some kind of basement somewhere? We thought it would be best to sleep in our boots and duct tape ourselves to the beds. It might be kinky but safety first! :)

Our set is getting really tight. I don't want to spoil it for any of you coming to future shows but you're in for a real treat. And this is probably the only chance you'll ever get to see Chrome live. There is some talk of "fly-out" shows next year but we'll have to wait for the offers. In the mean-time, there have been camcorders at almost all the shows and lots of stills being shot (We'd love copies BTW - Just let us know how we can get them).

On to Detroit, then Chicago to perform with the Solar Fire Light Show again....and Samra. Don't miss this. Should be a real "event".

Date-posted: 10-Apr-98 17:44:58

4/8/98 @ The Magic Stick (or The Majestic)
Big place. Some little kid's birthday party going on when we arrived to load in (not our usual crowd). Located above a working really cool bowling alley (playing Iggy Pop and such on the juke box). Wish we had time to bowl a few and hang out. Leopard carpeted stairs, huge PA, great barkeep, incredibly gorgeous door-girl. Tommy's been having some trouble with the Moog Liberation so if any of y'all know how to fix those, let us know. Silver Apples opened again. Those guys are so great. Don't miss a chance to see them if you can. Simian's set up is not to be believed. He's the only musician I know who needs to keep lubricating his instruments with WD-40. We put on a really good show for a good size crowd (especially for the Motor City). I guess the word is spreading. Lots of people are telling us they are hearing about it on the net so thanks to all of you. NO thanks however to the guys who ripped off the t-shirts and poster. YOU know who you are and so do WE! See you next time, boys.

4/9/98 @ The Empty Bottle
Alright. If you were in Chicago and you missed this, you can shoot yourself now.

Samra started the show with a fire dance to a Silver Apples song. I unfortunately missed this due to stuffing my face at the good restaurant next door, "Bite". Opening was a band made up of bar employees (sorry folks I forgot the name). Kind of a love/hate kind of band. I haven't seen anyone eat dinner while performing in a while. Samra came back between bands with another few dances (one to another Silver Apples song). She's really great and very professional. Lot's of fun. She performed on the floor in front of the stage and everybody really dug it. The Solar Fire Lightshow (SFL) kicked in on Samra with their high intensity, supper responsive psychedelic mood inspiring eye feast. Silver Apples came on and infected everyone with their infectious tunes (we've been humming them for days, "....and you and I..."). Side note: Joey the drummer had 2 hours practice with Simian before their 5 week tour. Man that guy is good. AND he makes weirder faces than I do when I play. SFL illuminated them with a bath of visual delights not to be believed. Swirling planets, swooshing bubbles, colors galore. Samra returned with a SWORD dance to a couple of Chrome songs believe it or not. Both Helios and Simian were impressed with her interpretation of the music.Then, (if that wasn't enough) Chrome came on and proceeded to obliterate the sell-out crowd. Best set we've done yet. We ripped though all the songs. Big thanks to Chris Estrada for doing great sound with little to no check. We did a great jam to "The Tribes", did the evil slow version of "Chili" and Samra joined us on stage for "Armageddon". Don't forget the whole time SLF is dousing us in rays of stupor inducing photons. Most fun I've had at or in a show in a LONG time. Hope all of you there had as much fun as we did! ("Abstract Nympho Granny"?)

SLF can be found at http://www.now-online.com/jmfinity/. We can't thank these guys enough for driving all the way to Chicago to perform with us (and I do mean "with us"). Wish they could come with us to all our shows. ESPECIALLY San Francisco. Boy would they go over big there. Samra (Iara Kendrick) can be found at samra@tcia.net. There's also a link from the Chrome site. Thanks again Iara for coming all the way from VA.

BTW: If anybody has a copy of the Chrome articles in the Chicago Reader and Tribune or any other articles or reviews on Chrome (even ads), please send them to us. I'm sure we can dig up a sticker or a used guitar pick or something for your trouble.

"Ocayz Corral" in Madison tonight


Date-posted: 15-Apr-98 11:14:32

4/11/98 Minneapolis, MI - First Street
Thanks to a very attentive crew at the club we managed to unload in the middle of a huge basketball game starting right across the street. Really pretty town. We played on the small stage of the same club that Prince filmed Purple Rain (...what ever happened to him?). VERY smoky club. Are we getting old or are people smoking more? What's with you people...that stuff is BAD for you. We played with some good opening bands (for once) and had a good time. MIs not known for the rad-kick-ass shows however. Loosen up guys...you don't get to see Chrome every day (or every decade) y'know. -and NO thanks to the person who threw glitter all over Helios's equipment.

4/12/98 Iowa City, IO
We are very sorry but we had to cancel this show due to electrical problems with our truck. It's all fixed now so we don't foresee any problem for the next shows.

4/14/98 Lincoln, NB - Knickerbocker's
WHATASHOW! Wow. It seemed like the whole music community was laying in wait for  us. Packed house. Big Helios Creed/Chrome fans here 'tell you what'! We put on a great set with two encores and lots of noise (the good kind). People jumping off the stage, slamming, pogoing, general chaos and fun. Whish we all had time to hang out more after the show but ...y'know. We had the best time playing for you all. Really makes me wish Chrome did this years ago. Thanks to everybody for making it such a fun show. Seems like our shows are getting bigger and bigger. Once again...Hey guy with the camcorder...WE WANT A COPY!

Date-posted: 19-Apr-98 21:44:52

4/15/98 Bluebird Theater Denver, CO

Big beautiful place. We were followed by some folks who came all the way from the last show in Lincoln, NB. It was really nice to play a big place with a light show, a great sound system (although we had to play REALLY quiet) and not so much SMOKE (kaff-kaff). We sure miss our dancers and light shows when they're not there. Anyone wanting to "enhance" our shows, please contact us through here or before the show. Aleph and I have head colds but we got through ok. Hope y'all liked the show, we had a great time. The theater has a recording studio upstairs and they recorded the whole show. We haven't listened to it yet but it should be good. We might do the live record with songs from different shows if the quality is good enough. The S.F. show will still be the main recording (as long as we don't all mess up too badly). Thanx Jon and all for the yo-yo (look for "Spintastic" at your local toy store...)
___SPINTASTIC: Used and endorsed by CHROME!___

We had to leave right after the show to head for Seattle. Tried to make it in one go but pooped out in Pendelton, OR. It's so hard to load/unload all this equipment, drive, deal with "odd" motels, drive, deal with all the different clubs, drive, deal with different sound systems, drive and still put on a good show...which is the real point of all this. It would be so nice to just show up at the show, play and leave. We could all do such a better performance. So the next time you go see ANY touring band, buy a T-shirt or sticker or something so they can eat and buy gas. And be nice (or at least polite) even if they suck. This is really hard work. If anybody has a plane out there that you are not using...can you give us a lift?

We just heard about Wendy O. Williams and Roz Williams. Does anyone have any details?

Seattle - Portland - HOME!

Date-posted: 21-Apr-98

04/17/98 Crocodile Cafe - Seattle, WA

Finally made it to Seattle after driving-driving-driving (some gas company is making a LOT of money off of this tour). We hit everything from snow to heat on the way. Mars=Wyoming No joke.

Did not see one plaid shirt or ripped jeans in grungeland (oh...is that "over"?). Crocodile Cafe is a pretty historical spot with the likes of Nirvana (who?) playing there in the early days (...early to...?). The place has a cafe/bar in the front (best veggie burgers in the U.S. ...sez all the Chrome boys) and a strange looking Tiki-ish club inside with giant green sperm everywhere (I think they were supposed to look like cobras, but...). Couple of great record stores on the same street.

Galaxy Chamber opened for us with a spell binding, mystical, creepy, fun show featuring a guest dancer clad in a leather "bikini" (for lack of a better term). She proceeded to attach a set of flaming nipples and penis to her outfit and gyrate on the floor for a song or two. Very impressive. She also did a fire dance (after her dick and tits were sufficiently extinguished). Thanks to Crystal, Nick, Mayhem and all the Galaxy folks.

We came on to a full house and killed 'em like usual. Had a great time. We were joined by Galaxy Chamber's dancer (I'm sorry I didn't get her name ...anybody know?) and also "Hazelnut" graced us with her presence and quite a show was had by all (---yes WE like to watch, too!). We did the sexy version of "The Tribes" and sweated to the Chrome oldies. Seattle's a great city. We'd love to come back some time.

04/18/98 Berbatis' Pan - Portland, OR

"Quick" drive to Portland. Lost for 30 minutes trying to find the club (the usual). Berbatis' Pan is beautiful and has a great sound system. Lots of rooms and pool tables and a restaurant and bar and video games and and and. Saw my oldest friend from kindergarten, Carrie (HEY)! Portland's a nifty city, check out the free skate park under the bridge.

Opening band Kung Fu (somethingorother) was pretty cool. Nova called them "Math Core".

Hazelnut came down all the way from Seattle to dance for us again, wearing war paint and a massive frilly skirt-thing. Joe (who runs the second Chrome site @ http://www.staticwhitesound.com/chrome flew up from the Bay area to record us with a nifty hat setup with microphone "ears" and a DAT-in-a-pack. Hope it turned ok. This was our last show "on the road" and we put our all into it. We had lots of fun and Hazelnut added to it all (she might show up in SF, too). Too bad we couldn't do fog and lights and pyrotechnics n' stuff (Aleph really needs a big flaming gong behind his drums).

We all packed up and Aleph and I (the rhythm section) split to spend our last $ on a flight home. We couldn't take 11-12 hours in the van with these head colds. All the rest drove home and arrived in one mostly sane piece).

We're now resting up and revving up for the S.F. show at the Great American Music Hall on 04/24/98. KUSF is promoting it and we should sell out. Thanks to all (or most) of the opening bands and sound/club crews, all the dancers and light wizards (Hey Jim & fam.) and everybody who came out to see some old guys try to rock out. It made all the driving and lifting and not sleeping worth it to see all of you and give you a good show. We might have been a little grumpy at times but we all had a great trip. We hope you all had as = good a time as we did.


Date-posted: 1-May-1998

April24,1998 San Francisco, California - The Great American Music Hall

Finally home! We had a whole week to recover and get ready for our last (and biggest) gig. We all slept, ate, healed, restored contacts with our loved ones and had a general good-mood swing. Unfortunately the professional recording we hoped to make at the SF show fell through (for the most part), but it was great knowing Chrome would play "home town" for the first time in 16 years! The GAMH is a big beautiful place built around the turn of the century. Check out http://www.musichallsf.com/info/history/ for some nifty history. This place has the biggest backstage I have seen since the Greek Theatre in LA. Lots of friends and family at the show. Many people who had been waiting a LONG time for this. We of course wore the full gear: black boots, black jumpsuits, codpieces, black shades and the trademark Derbys (nod to Anthony Burgess). Big excited "Whoo!"s from the crown (and a pretty big crowd, too). Slapped right into our set and made LOTS of noise and general mayhem. We were joined again by Galaxy Chamber's dancer and got doused in a bath of red floodlights (a very creepy effect). We should have done a second encore but "S'better to leave 'em wantin' more!" The local papers were WAY off by printing that not only the Stench brothers were playing but that Damon Edge was going to perform! Damon could not be reached for comment about this. Anybody out there got reviews? We recorded the show on video from at least 2 sources and we also got an audio tape off of the board but it's a "board" mix. We're going to try to combine everything to something releasable. We're also expecting tapes from the tour shows so hopefully we'll have a "Tour Compilation" to get out there somehow. This whole experience has been difficult but great. For Helios I know it was good for the soul and for the rest of us it was a big BIG thrill. After the show Hillary Stench (Hanes), the bass player for Chrome on Blood on the Moon, 3rd From the Sun and No Humans Allowed, came up to me and introduced himself and said I did a good job. I can die now. Thanx so much, Hillary. I passed along all the kudos I got for him from fans who thought I was him on tour. Jello Biafra (name drop - name drop) and H chatted up after the show as well and a bunch of our friends showed up with jumpsuits and derbys on.

For the future... only the Lion Head knows for certain but we'll keep you posted.

Please keep an eye on the web sites, I'll be posting tour photos and flyers and more "stuff" as time goes on. I hope to get a full, final Chrome history up there as well. I hope y'all liked these rantings and ravings and thanx for all your support for us and the band. This kind of communication wasn't even thought of when Chrome first existed and it's been fun and exciting to have contact with the whole world.

Now go out and start your own band!

CHROME: Signing Off

- Buz Deadwax