What is it exactly about going on tour that is so appealing to some people? Take your adventurous spirit and your love for the music and leave some of reality behind. Bid your loved ones farewell and open your mind and your heart. There is a lot to learn from being out on the road and from meeting new people - be prepared to gain a new perspective almost immediately.
We left the San Francisco Bay Area on a beautifully sunny Tuesday afternoon to drive northbound towards Eureka. This is no ordinary drive. Once you are past the rolling green hills and vineyards of Marin and Sonoma Counties, Mendocino just wraps you up in a feast of huge luscious trees. Before you know it, you are craning your neck to see where the tips of these giants touch the sky. Realizing the past at this moment and knowing how many lives have passed through these forests creates a stir within me and I can feel the vibrations from other beings.
Once in Eureka, we arrived at Club West and were greeted by the crew of the Tribe. This is no ordinary crew. Every crew member is part of the tribe, the family, and everyone has an equal part in creating the event. Whether it's someone selling the merchandise, playing the guitar or shining the lights, each individual has a big part in the product of the evening. Huge props go out to the crew for creating the right atmosphere and doing it respect and kindness. After all, this isn't just a "show" - it's a chance to connect with people on this new level. No, we didn't come down to help you party down - we came here to share this special experience with you. We hope you enjoy!
The crowd filled in nicely and by 10pm there was a decently crowded room with just enough room for everyone to get down comfortably. Sound Tribe Sector 9 took the stage and worked themselves in with the DJ's mix as they opened with "Evasive." "Your It" and "Tap In" were next. Similar to the combo of these two songs at The Fillmore, this is a great way for the mood to be set and the groove to start. There was a great response from the crowd - people were feeling the electricity in the air.
The delicious "...and some are angels" came next. I found this to be a good time to send out my vibrations to those that were not with me. Sector 9 has a way of making me ponder special people. I can take what they are offering me, turn it into healing power and send it off into the world. When I asked what the beginning of the sentence was, Hunter told me, "There's a lot of people walking the Earth..."
The first set ended with "Orbital." Now, this is the song that people are talking about when they associate STS9 with aliens and outer-space. The jams in the middle of the song sound like things are being shot off into space. At the end of "Orbital," I heard a new STS9 sound coming from Murphy's bass. Trying to put this into words is difficult but there was a rumbling, buzzing, vibration coming from the direction of that bass and it created this numbing sensation. The guys up in the sound booth were quite taken aback, stared in awe and then caught the vibe quickly. Saxon dropped the house lights to a real low dark blue and Chris created this twinkling on the backdrop with the projection program. This is how it would feel to be in outer-space, looking out of the space ship window, in orbit... maybe.
After a short set break, the boys came back on for another set. Second set felt both like a look back in time with a glance into the future. The new "Grow" opened the second set with it's grooving house beats that make me think about The New Deal as Phipps creates a dance vibe on the keys. The refreshing "Water Song" came next bringing with it visions of creeks, waterfalls, rain... They recreate a storm with sounds of thunder and notes that just fall like droplets. The high point of the night came next with the killer "Wikachikana" featuring a serious funk sandwich with an intense Moonsocket-like filling. A new song called "STS9" is this beautiful tune with a more mellow Zach giving us a new perspective on the band. This tune is aptly name as there is this string that runs through giving each member a chance to roll with the riff. While these aren't "solos" we see the different members of the band stand out individually.
Then, the anthem to close the show - "Moonsockets" hit Eureka last night. This was no ordinary "Moonsockets." The song began with its initial charge creating a fury among the crowd as usual but there is a completely new ending. After the hysteria, it mellowed WAY OUT and all of a sudden we were immersed in this gorgeous new experience worked into this old favorite.
The people of Eureka seemed pretty satisfied for a Tuesday evening. Yours truly was also quite content. After having an epiphany on Saturday night, it is now wonderful to watch the expressions of people seeing this band for the first time. They look like they have just discovered some ancient secret.
Passing into Oregon, we're now getting excited for tomorrow's show in Eugene at the Wild Duck Music Hall. Check out the rest of STS9's Tour Dates and get down to a show in your area! Stay tuned for more news from the road with photos to follow. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like to ask the band a question!
On the Road with Fingerball
Go Get Your 9 On!
Download Live STS9 at JamDr!
STS9 | April 3, 2001
Club West | Eureka, CA
Set I: Evasive, Your It, Tap In, ...and some are angels, Orbital
Set II: Grow, Water Song, Wikachikana, STS9, Moonsockets