Last month Aussie punk rockers The Decline came to the UK for the very first time. Having played shows with Descendents, Bouncing Souls, Lagwagon, and varous other influential bands in the past, the quartet have had their fare share of road experience. With their impressive third LP, ‘Resister’ also being released last month, their time in the UK for the Already Heard-sponsored run had its ups and downs.
To document their time on the road, we asked vocalist/guitarist Pat to give us a day-by-day account of The Decline’s debut UK tour. From missing important festival slots to eating dodgy pizza, The Decline’s time in the UK looked like it was a rollercoaster.
Day 1: The Maze, Nottingham – 08/08/2015
Crazy day. We are pretty disorganized in the morning and probably get to Gare Du Nord station in Paris a bit too late. We miss our train to London while we are checking in our guitars. Then we get held up in customs for an hour or two and miss several more trains. We eventually get onto a train and we are all sitting with random people in different carriages. We find a whole carriage which is a bar and we have a drink while the Eurostar goes under the ocean to London. When we arrive at St Pancras Station in turns out that our van is at another station; Kings Cross. By this stage it’s getting pretty late, so Harry and I run to Kings Cross, pick up the van, drive it back to St Pancras and pick up the others and the gear.
Next we gun it from London to Nottingham with no stops and arrive at the Maze. We made it!
The show is packed and we smash through our set. It’s probably the hottest room we’ve played in and we all deem it the sweatiest show of the tour so far. Afterwards we go out drinking in Nottingham with local promoter Jordan Martin and some new friends.
Day 2: Rebellion Fest, Blackpool Winter Gardens – 09/08/2015
Luck wasn’t on our side today. We left in what we thought was good time to make the short trip from Nottingham to Blackpool but get caught in traffic for almost 5 hours. We eventually arrived in Blackpool after braving the traffic of an Airshow that was also happening that weekend, at 5:30pm – 3 hours after our set was meant to start. We stuck around backstage at the festival in case we were able to be allocated another spot but no such luck. What a fucked day. Although we did get to watch Ignite! After the show we drove to London to get a head start on tomorrow.
Day 3: New Cross Inn, London – 10/08/2015
We spend the day checking out the scene in Old London Town, going around to various shops and we even eat a proper English Breakfast. Ben and I find a pub where we can drink beers while the others continue sight seeing. We eventually roll up to the New Cross Inn for our show with Millions of Dead Cops. We first met the guys from MDC in Croatia a few weeks back, so we are excited to catch up with them again, particularly because we will be spending the next few nights with them.
We play pretty early to a small crowd and then enjoy the rest of the bands, particularly In Evil Hour from The North and of course, MDC. Toward the end of the set the police are called to the venue because of a fight in the pit. We spend the night with our friend Richie from Mike TV. On another note, cheers to all of our friends from Australia who have migrated to England who came down to this show as well as our new English friends!
Day 4: Underground, Plymouth – 11/08/2015
Tonight’s show is in Plymouth in the South of England. MDC are running late because their van exploded (possible slight exaggeration on my part). We eat dinner at a local kebab shop before the gig. Harry orders a pizza, and 30 minutes later the cook comes out and tells Harry he forgot about him and burnt the pizza, and that he’ll make him another. Another 30 minutes pass and Harry gets his Pizza. But the crust is covered in mould. Harry asks for his money back and the guy tells him “”It’s not mould, it’s just blue stuff, it comes out of the freezer that way” Harry convinces him to give him his money back. Case closed. We play and watch MDC and it’s a lot of fun, although, the Pizza thing is definitely the story of the night. Am I right?
Day 5: Brudenell Social Club, Leeds – 12/08/2015
Our final night with MDC. On our way to Leeds we stop for a bit in Birmingham and find a vegetarian pizza shop that sells pizzas with fake cheese and fake pepperoni. Harry’s pizza woes from yesterday are all sorted. When we arrive in Leeds, we find about ten streets that all start with the word Harold. Harold Street, Harold Road, Harold Place, you get the idea. We wander the streets of Leeds taking photos of our drummer Harry standing underneath all of the street signs. The show is a heap of fun, and some dudes from Wales tell us they’ve driven all the way here to see us. Pretty rad! Danny from Fair Do’s also came from Manchester to say hi as well as Jordan and the crew from Nottingham! We watch MDC for the last time and they kill it like every night.
Day 6: The Hope & Ruin, Brighton – 13/08/2015
This was my favourite show of the tour. I can’t really say why, I just think it had a rad vibe. We arrived in Brighton early enough to eat vegetarian hotdogs at The Hope and Ruin before enjoying a bunch of beers and watching River Jumpers and Giant. Afterwards we partied with our new friends Cat and Steve and drank more beers! Beer!
Day 7: The Owl Sanctuary, Norwich – 14/08/2015
Tonight’s show in Norwich was at the Iconic Owl Sanctuary venue with US Punks War On Women. They got caught in traffic until about half way through the show so it was rad to see them let loose live when they arrived. Hardcore thrashy punk at it’s best.
Day 8: Nice N Sleazy, Glasgow – 15/08/2015
It was cool being in a new country (again). This show was heaps of fun. The support bands brought us some Buckfast to drink on stage which is this crazy Scottish drink. It kind of tastes like wine but there’s definitely something Scottish going on too.
Day 9: The Exchange, Bristol – 16/08/2015
Tonight was a nice reunion with our friends from Teenage Bottlerocket. We had played a bunch of shows together in Europe so it was sweet to see them again in the UK. Also it was probably the biggest crowd we played to. We got to see rad UK bands Wonk Unit who sang about Horses and Bangers who blew us away. Also, we hung out with local punk legend Dave Campbell. 10/10
Day 10: The Fighting Cocks:, Kingston – 17/08/2015
Great wind up show with our new friends The River Jumpers and old friends Darko who we teamed up with in Europe. Fighting Cocks is a rad bar in an awesome part of town. We found a local vegan pizza shop and visited the legendary Banquet Records where we all spent too much money.
‘Resister’ by The Decline is out now on Pee Records.