Euro Tour: Day 18, Belgrade
Shima, the promoter, and his wife Miki invited us over to their small apartment for lunch. Delicious sausages, fried cheese, and soup followed by coffee prepared us for the four-hour trip to Belgrade. As we entered Belgrade, we got stuck in the most horrendous traffic jam any of us had ever seen. Eventually we made it to Bigz, a huge crazy industrial building that used to be a publishing/printing company in the former Yugoslavia. Now it is a huge eight-story complex of rehearsal rooms, artist studios, dance clubs, venues, and speak-easies. We loaded into a tiny, almost-swank lounge with an adjoining bar and then took a walk along the river Sava to eat some pretty awesome pizza on a floating restaurant.
By the time we got back, the venue and hallway outside were packed. The opening band, The Schtrebers, were very cool. They were all-instrumental with some interesting post-punk/art/shoegaze material that I really dug. Joe 4 blew the preamp section on the bass amp four or five songs in and threw in the towel. A kid named Alexander talked to us before the show. Apparently, he had drive 500k just to see us. Given the fact that he sang along to every single song, I’d say that he wasn’t pulling our leg. Jason felt that it was his worst performance of the tour and while that may be true, it was still a pretty great show. We hung out and talked to a lot of people afterward, including Stefan from the Natures With No Plagues blog. We slept in a rehearsal room on the seventh floor right next door to an all-night dance party. It was going strong when we went to bed at 4am and was still going when we woke up at 11am. Apparently the spirit of the building got into Jason, Bill and Sasha because they were up until 7am at an impromptu jam session consisting of Beatles, Nirvana, and Pixies covers.