Updated: Aug 24, 2020
Needless to say we were very excited to be playing the Warped tour as some of our first ever gigs. It was actually a bit daunting as we were such a new band - we were still kinda finding our feet a bit live.
It didn't help that in our efforts to imbibe all things 'Americana' we'd discovered some strange stuff they flogged in the all night truck stops called ‘Ephedrine’. This stuff was basically like a legally sold stimulant in capsules , available in some states presumably as a kind of ‘pick me up’ for truckers that needed to stay awake on long haul drives. A great idea I’m sure - if you take them as directed and in moderation, giving you probably the same kind of sensation as a few cups of very strong coffee. What you are probably NOT supposed to do is stay up drinking for days then, in a desperate attempt to function again, scoff every capsule in the packet before playing the show. That’s silly isn’t it?.. And only silly people would even think of that. I would describe it as a particularly unpleasant ‘high’ with all of the jittery, palpitating nausea you’d associate with speed along with a few additional unpleasant side effects. It was just as the opening bars of ‘We Luv U’ guitar riff were pushing their way deafeningly out to the audience at the First show that I discovered this. The sun beat relentlessly over the mosh pit which was erupting and I tried hard to take the moment in - 'Remember this always Jay' my racing brain said. If memory further serves me correctly I think I was on the word ‘Luv’ - when I shit myself. Stranger still , at the Randalls Island show, there was quite a large contingent in the crowd throwing up gang signs with their hands. People were saying ‘No don’t fuck with them, the gang thing is serious and they will think you are disrespecting them’ which of course just sounded like fucking nonsense to a parochial little Englander like me. By the end of the show I had taught the entire audience how to manipulate your hands to make a ‘shadow bunny’ which I insisted was a ‘gang sign’ from the UK .They seemed to like that and did it back ... It still makes me smile when I recall the heavily tattooed thug element of the audience all making little bunnies at each other, snarling and banging their heads to the beat. Hands across the water. Trousers in the laundry. Happy times.