|Steve Shalaty Immolation/Vader Tour Blog - Day 13, 14|
|Saturday, 16 October 2010 08:26|
Steve Shalaty Immolation/Vader Tour Blog - Day 13, 14
Day 13 - Day off in Seattle, Washington:
Today I wake up to an empty bus. Everybody has headed out to explore the city. We have a hotel room reserved so everyone can take showers. I call Bob, get the location and head down for an overdue shower. After breakfast with Mike aka Meekle aka Soundcheck, I head back to the bus. I'm totally in the mood to practice so I drag out my pad and some sticks and set up right on the sidewalk in front of the club. I practice single strokes, double strokes, paradiddles, paradiddle variations and some other rudiments and patterns. I also work on switching between grips, mainly between the strict german grip I primarily use and the second finger pivot french-ish grip that Alex recommended.
After about an hour and a half Paul shows up and promptly busts out his new pad which he puts on top of a "no parking" sign. We start jamming back and forth, showing each other troublesome patterns and drills that each of us like to play. Pretty soon we are freestyling and improvising over top of each other and then we start matching up single strokes. Once we match up and are playing simultaneously we kind of zone out. We were going between 200 an 220 if I had to guess and once we started we locked in for probably about 15 to 20 minutes straight. Just relaxing and chugging along in a bit of a stamina match. This gives Paul the idea to go get his metronome and stopwatch. We decide to run Derek Roddy's 40 minute single stroke drill. After that we start just running 2 minutes of singles at increasing bpms. I think we started at 190 and I fell out at 250. By this time its past dark and pretty damn cold so I bow out despite Pauls invitation to grind out 260. 45 minutes later Paul comes in and puts away his toys. This concludes our practice for the day. I'm very glad we drilled even though we neglected our feet. Ill work the feet tomorrow in Portland.
Day 14 - Portland, Oregon:
One of my favorite stops on tour. Its a great town with some great food and its a welcome departure from the east coast attitude. Load in. Sound check. All's well aboard the kit and my hands are nice and loose. I try to put a nice burn on the legs during sound check. Shortly after sound check I find out that the Australian and Asian legs of the tour are in jeapordy of being postponed because our passports need to be sent to the New Zealand and Chinese embassies in order to gain access to those countries. This is a problem because we are starting a European tour right after the U.S. leg finishes and we will need our passports while there. Very frustrating news. I'm straight pissed off and go to take it out on the practice pad. After I calm down a bit I go next door for a burrito and try not to think about it. I need to focus on San Francisco. Focus. I talked to Ian of Sickdrummer Magazine yesterday and I'm totally stoked for the filming of the Frisco show. I feel a lot of pressure as well and this makes me want to go practice some more. I snag one of my pedals off the kit and take it upstairs with me. At the far end of the dressing room I tape a folded towel to the wall and drill my single foot blasts. One foot then the other for about 45 minutes. I have to be a little more careful with drilling my feet because they are less likely to recover after severe punishment than my hands.
After the local opener all the bands play smooth tonight. The drums go on and off the stage with everybody pitching in as usual. Paul is pushing his blast again tonight. I can tell yesterday's practice helped us both. Today we switched opening songs and this will be the last night we do that. Can't beat "The Purge" to start out with. Other than that the set was pretty good. My single foot blasts were feeling a little tired by the closer but that's about par for the course on this tour. San Francisco tomorrow. Focus.