Tour life might seem glamorous and fun, but it ain’t for the faint of heart. Between the homesickness and long drives, there’s also the issue of where to rest your head each night. Up-and-coming bands cutting their teeth playing tiny gig after tiny gig don’t usually get to ride in a lux tour bus much less stay in a hotel room every evening. Instead, they get to crash wherever they can while trying to save up gas money. Swedish industrial-metal veterans Misery Loves Co. broke up in 2000, but the recently reunited band is now gearing up to drop a big comeback album, ZERO, on Friday, November 23rd. They know all about the touring life and the shady spots an underground group may have to rest their heads. We caught up with singer Patrik Wirén to get his strangest stories from the road.
1. A heavy-metal convention in L.A., 1995
The hotel — I don’t know the name — was probably pretty nice and ordinary. But everyone staying there was a heavy-metal rockstar, a heavy-metal journalist or a heavy-metal … anything. That was weird.
2. A van in NYC, 1995
We were driving around the streets of NYC and I didn’t know the driver very well and I was getting paranoid and all of a sudden he stopped the van and went out to make a phone call. I thought he was calling some hit man. A few minutes later our song was heard on the radio and I was freaking out even more. Of course, he was just calling a friend with the DJ at the radio station and thought he’d made us happy by asking him to play our song. But to me at the time it was just weird.
3. A stage in Copenhagen, Denmark, 1994
We played there and the promotor … well, he just let us sleep on the floor. That wasn’t too weird. But before we went to sleep, our bass player asked for eight centiliters of whisky and got eight glasses of whisky. That was weird, but in a fun and nice way.
4. Nightrider in Europe, 1995
God, how come everything I can think of happened around the same time? Now that is weird! Anyway, on this tour, which lasted for two months, we had a driver who kept making up stories 24/7. It was very weird to hear him say stuff like, “Yeah, I interviewed Michael Jackson on national television” or “I was a huge movie star.” 24/7. For real.
5. Sweden Rock Festival, 2018
I got the suite! I mean, you would think someone like Rob Halford would get a room like that, of course, but me? Very weird in the best of ways.