Wednesday, March 21, 2012

ONSLAUGHT - The Scream For Violence North America 2012 Tour Blog

The Scream For Violence North America 2012 Tour
is sponsored by Wacken Foundation

UK Thrashers ONSLAUGHT have embarked to tour North America for the first time ever: from March 19 to April 8, 2012, the sounds of violence are spread over the U.S. and Canada!

Onslaught are joined by M-PIRE OF EVIL, EVIL DEAD at all West Coast shows and great local supports like e.g. FUELED BY FIRE.

See all tour dates at this location!

To let their fans have a share in the tour, Onslaught will check in from the road daily and the official tour blog is exclusively brought to you by Featured Artists.

This is the story of Scream For Violence North America 2012 - Mr. Nige Rockett has the floor!

DAY 1: God doesn't exist and circle pits rage at first show in Seattle, WA

Well here we are, first time for Onslaught in the US to play some live shows... and to be totally honest: it's been a fucking tough start!

We flew out from London Heathrow on what surely had to be a Wilbur & Orville prototype 'jumbo jet' with no on board entertainment and zero leg space, worst long haul flight I have ever experienced. 11 hours of pure boredom and discomfort courtesy of United Airlines. To quote Jeff: "I was praying to god that the plane would crash just so i could get off the fucking thing, but as he doesn't exist - it didn't." :D

We eventually arrived in Seattle at around 10pm sunday night after a second and equally uncomfortable flight from San Francisco and met up with tour manager Dustin Schoenhofer (drummer for Walls of Jericho). Real cool guy, which is great as he is gonna be our 6th member for the next month. 

M-Pire Of Evil guys are already in town and catching some Z's, something I am unable to do cos of the fucking jet lag kicking in! We hit the diner next door to the hotel for a late night snack only to find they 'dont sell beer... NOOOOOOOOO - Coke it is! Liquid variety I hasten to add.

Sporadic sleep ensues and then it's up and off to the first show at Studio 7 on a very cold and rainy monday afternoon in Seattle. All the backline is here, everything works just fine and soundcheck sounds great. Cool enough venue, cool local crew, typically for me!!

A sad moment for Andy in Seattle...
Performance time comes around all too quickly as we're all still pretty vacant, but the atmosphere is good as we kick off with the obligatory 'Killing Peace'. Rusty is an understatement and things feel a little loose tonight, but nobody seems to notice, its just us  being hyper self critical as always hahaha and the circle pits continue to rage all night long...

There is another first for Onslaught tonight and it is that we perform the track 'Godhead' from the Sounds Of Violence album for the first time live, it works really really well and i think it will now become a permanent addition to the set over the duration of the tour. 

So first show down, no dramas no crisis no tears and we blasted out the cobwebs. Portland here we come for round 2! 

Seattle set list March 19, 2012:

Killing  Peace
Born for War
Let there be Death
Angels of Death
Destroyer of Worlds
The Sound of Violence
Metal Forces
Planting Seeds of Hate
Fight with the Beast
Power from Hell
Thermouclear Devastation of the Planet Earth

Day 2 - Portland, OR: Getting back into the groove

Are we back in the UK??? Fuck, this is just like being at home. It's freezing cold and pouring with rain, totally unexpected and definitely unwanted!

We have a short drive from Seattle to Portland for the next show and the first impressions of the city are great, it looks a beautiful place even in this gloomy weather, somewhere I'd definitely like to see much more of. We arrive at the Hawthorne Theatre around 3pm, it's a cool venue and soundcheck is real good, sounding brutal!

Onslaught, then rehab. That's the spirit!
Promises to be a good show tonight and we are not disappointed. The crowd is right up for it and feeds us some much needed energy as we are still trying to shake off the effects of the jetlag. Performance is much better tonight, we can feel the rhythm coming back!

Got chance to hang out with some fans after the show and have a few beers which was cool, especially with the fucking horror that is facing us in the morning...

Day 3 - Santa Clara, CA:
Losing Taco Bell virginity and looking for Dolly Parton in California

We decided not to take a hotel after the Portland show as we have to be on the road for 6.30am, a friend of our tour manager has kindly offered the band to crash at his ranch to get a few hours sleep before the "11 hour drive" to California.

We arrive at the ranch around 2.30am and now its fucking snowing, jeez can it get any more like home - and can anyone remember the Texas Chainsaw Massacre? Haha! 4 hours sleep and we wake to 4 inches of snow which means the journey will be even tougher and take even longer. It's about 3 hours until we drive clear the snow, passing several smashed cars and trucks along the way. This will probably be one of the weirdest weather days of our lives.

Finally: Onslaught over California!
No sooner than we hit the California border the sun is out and it's 65 / 70 degrees, we've gone from snow and minus temperatures to summer sunshine in a matter of hours, very very bizarre. The scenery changes radically, California looks fantastic!

TACO BELL stop. We lose our Taco Bell virginity on Wednesday lunch time. Obviously heard about it, never tried it. It was great, what else can I say except: bring us some more! It breaks the monotony of this monster of a drive that is now thankfully coming to an end and we arrive in Santa Clara at 6pm ffs. Doors are 'meant' to be at 7pm - I dont think so somehow.

The organisation for this particular show has been a total nightmare with cities and venues being changed no less than 3 times due to venue refurbishments etc., which I'm sure doesn't bode well for a properly promoted show. Anyway, this venue is fucking weird / huge and about as 'un-metal' as you can get.

We're all looking around for Tony Bennett or Dolly Parton to appear, so maybe we should do our Lounge set tonight? But that's another story... The turn out tonight is pretty average for obvious reasons though not a complete disaster by any means, but the crowd is well up for the show and it really is enjoyable. 

The sound in particular was fucking immense and we are dead on our feet. Goodnight all!!

Day 4 - Los Angeles, CA:
Insanity in L.A., but will we ever get round to partying again?

It's real nice to get a decent night's sleep at last, and waking up to the Californian sunshine sure makes for a good start to the day! Then we remember we have a 6 hour drive to Los Angeles. Hhhhmmmnn, where's the time for partying? We could sadly be earning ourselves a good reputation at this point! FUCK THAT!! Surely we can find ourselves some chaos in L.A., the Rock 'n' Roll capital of the world. Can't we?!?

Everything is manic today as usual, me and Sy have a live interview with Jimmy Kabbs on KNAC Radio this afternoon as soon as we arrive in L.A.. Interview goes great and it's real cool to meet everyone down there, the guys have been really fantastic in their support for the show! (Thanks so much guys, very much appreciated.)

We get to the Echoplex venue for 6pm and straight into soundcheck, again the sound is brutal in the extreme. I'm real suprised by the standard of 'in house techs' over here, everyone so far has been a real star and delivered exactly what we're looking for and beyond.

By 7.30pm queues are winding all the way down the street and these guys / ladies are definitely up for some violence. The show really starts to liven up when Evil Dead hit the stage, so we know it's gonna be 666% mental tonight - bring it on!

L.A. does NOT disappoint!! "Fucking Insane" are the words that immediately spring to mind, these guys are relentless without respite thru the first 4 nonstop tracks of our set. There's a great atmosphere and incredible energy in the venue tonight. What a fucking show, everyone is wasted including us, hahaha. We're buzzing right now.

Met up with some old and new friends after the show which is real nice, but it's late on a Thursday night and yet again the chaos fails to transpire as we had hoped for. I'm gonna go back to the hotel and burn the fucking bible just to prove we're not going soft... Rockett out! 

Day 5 - San Diego, CA: 
A special meeting, another great show - and still no party in sight

Today we actually get to stay in bed for a few extra hours, even though I'm still on an adrenaline rush from last night's show. We only have a 90 minute drive to San Diego, so no mad rush. The sun is shining and it's another beautiful day here, this place is definitely taking hold of me in a way I never thought possible. I love the general vibe and feel of L.A., it's a real cool city!

Mic, Rusty Coons and Sy
Dustin, our tour manager, has arranged for us to go visit a friend of his en route to San Diego to have some lunch and to look at some very special motor cycles. I'm sure many of you are aware of the TV programme Sons of Anarchy and what it's all about. Today we have come to meet up with Rusty Coons who is a Hells Angel, owner of Illusion Custom Cycles and a guy who has built machines for the show including the actual machine that Kurt Sutter (Big Otto Delaney) rides.

WOW, it's truly fucking awesome: there's around 20+ bikes here and each and everyone is stunning. It really makes ya wanna get back on 2 wheels once again, although it's totally against my better judgement, haha! Sy seizes the opportunity for an impromptu photo session and really looks the part on Big Otto's machine.

We have a quick spot of lunch at a nearby diner. I'm on a health kick right now, so it's salad all the way for me -  with a few beers. ;) I know, I know, but it's sunny and hot outside... 

It's a 45 minute drive from here to the Jumping Turtle venue, and the scenery is amazing as we travel along the Pacific coast. This is the first day that has offered us even the slightest hint of relaxation.

The Jumping Turtle - San Diego, CA
First impressions of the venue are very mixed. It's a kinda strange set up, but the stage is decent and it appears many legendary bands have played there (so I am informed by one of the locals). Again we strike it rich with a great 'in house tech', we're all ready to rock! This is the last night we have the Evil Dead guys with us, we'll be sad to see them go. They're a real cool band and really great guys, too. Look forward to next time, amigos! 

So once again, showtime comes around, it's fairly busy and there's a hell of a lot of ladies in tonight. It's not far off a 50/50 split, so no complaints there. It's a very different reaction compared to L.A. last night, but we take each show as it comes and on it's own merits. Everyone including us has a great time and the band is getting it's shit together now. We should be just about listenable by the time we hit Washington, D.C., hahaha!

No fucking parties again tonight, what's going on??? Hotel bibles beware, we are the METAL FORCES!!!

Day 6 - Tempe, AZ: Jeff keeps cool in Arizonian heat - and where's the roof?

Here we go again, up and out early at 8am for another monster drive to Tempe, Arizona. 8 hours, so we are told as we reluctantly leave California.

It's really bizarre in the fact that as soon as we hit Arizona the scenery changes radically, almost like another continent not just another U.S. state.  For any of you cartoon freaks out there (like me), this is real 'Roadrunner / Wile E Coyote' territory, speaking of which: when will Wile E actually catch that annoying fucking bird?

Welcome to Arizona!
The unusual red rock formations are quite spectacular and make the early stages of the journey real interesting, but after 8 hours of nothing else to see, it starts to grate a little... 

We have a stop for refuelling and to grab some lunch, as soon as we step out from the air conditioned bus it's like being thrown into a furnace. It's close to 90 degrees out here and Jeff promptly sticks as much of his torso as he can manage into a huge ice container on the forecourt. Cool dude is our Jeff, haha!

No kidding - no fucking roof!!
We arrive at the venue 910 LIVE at around 4pm, kind of out in the middle of nowhere - and there's no fucking roof on the venue?!? WTF??? It's an open air show because of the heat. Noooooo!!

Soundcheck is shocking, everything sounds so bright and thin because of the atmosphere and we just cannot get good guitar tones whatever we try, the onstage monitors are dreadful, too. These things are so crucial for us to play a good show, we really gotta hear stuff very clearly when playing at such tempos. 

Unfortunately the heat does not subside and the problems remain at show time, which kinda takes the edge off of things for me, especially when other technical problems begin occurring too. 

The show is all just a blur to me as I'm fighting with shit all the way through the set. My one lasting memory of this show though will be a real young lad probably only around 10 years old, stood on the barriers and really going for it. So fuckin' cool!!! Rockett out...

Check out this audio interview with Sy Keeler, conducted by The Age Of Metal:

Day 7 - El Paso, TX: 
"Children of God pure fucking evil!!!" - Onslaught enter Texas

8am, another beautiful sunny Sunday morning, up and at it again! 

These mighty journeys are now becoming the norm and anything under 5 hours we consider to be a mini day trip, hahaha. Unfortunately today is another long haul as we head for El Paso in the Lone Star state of Texas. I'm really looking forward to these shows, you always build up pre-conceptions of cities / countries before you visit, and Texas conjures up all kinds of interesting images for me. Cowboys / oil fields / TV shows / infamous border towns and of course Pantera, all kinda cool stuff.

Not very convincing: the Hitler mannikin
at The Thing? museum in Arizona
We take a stop for fuel and food after several hours of travel at the famous The Thing? roadside attraction in Dragoon, Arizona. There is a huge kind of tourist shop here selling everything that is Texas, and of course there is The Thing? museum! 

$1 entry fee, ya just gotta be inquisitive and take a look! A museum sure don't come any more basic than this, but the things on display are quite fantastic. 

Stagecoaches like you've seen in the old Western movies / cars so old and primitive that they probably actually pulled the stagecoaches / a Rolls Royce that belonged Adolf Hitler, which contains a not very convincing Adolf mannikin :) / muskets & rifles dating back hundreds of years - and finally I guess what is the main attraction: the Thing itself!

The corpses of a partially decayed woman and her baby in a coffin, freaky shit. If you are ever randomly passing this way ya must drop in and take a look, it's the best dollar you will ever spend!

En route the scenery rarely changes once we cross the state line, again it's quite different to Arizona in terms of landscape. We have small mountain ranges flanking us either side and this just goes on and on and on with no habitation to be seen. It's lucky for us that the bus has WiFi and we are able to occupy ourselves in times of such mega boredom.

After a few more hours drive we finally reach El Paso and to our right is Juarez, Mexico literally metres away as we drive along the Rio Grande (which really isn't so grand, Jeff said he could piss a bigger river, haha). What an amazing visible contrast between the 2 countries!! 

The lights of Juarez, Mexico
The venue is a stones throw away from Mexico and as darkness descends the lights of the vast Juarez city look stunning, sprawling as far as the eye can see. It's meeting day for the local bike gang at the House of Rock venue and there are some real cool machines parked up outside.

Soundcheck goes pretty smooth in front of a large audience of biker dudes who offer a great round of applause at the end of Destroyer of Worlds

Only one local support tonight which is cool, because it's not great to finish late on a Sunday. The crowd is good tonight and very much up for some thrashing, it appears several of our Mexican brothers have crossed over for the show which is real nice to see!!

Real enjoyable show goes off with out a hitch, Godhead is getting stronger every time we play it, and the Americans always enjoy Sy's banter about the amount of weird religious cults in the country. "Children of God pure fucking evil!!!


  1. I'm sure its just the beginning of a metal as fuck 3 weeks! \m/

  2. Hey guys I was at the Seattle show and you left us Shellshocked for sure! Rhythm section and vocals seemed spot on to us... broken finger and all. Couldn't really hear the solos as well as I would have liked though. Thank you so much for coming all the way to Seattle to Destroy Our World. Great set list! I was screaming for you guys to play Godhead and was fired up when you blasted it out. Awesome job! Looking forward to the new CD and future tours!


  4. I am really enjoying reading the tour reports! Thank you Featured Artists for giving this to us! I can't wait for St Louis show and maybe I bring some Taco Bell to them hahahaha!! Hope all shows are awesome!

  5. Hang in there guys it WILL get better...Glad to have the mighty ONSLAUGHT in the States thrashing!

  6. Next time you're in town, I'll take you guys for some REAL Mexican food... MUCH BETTER than that Taco Bell stuff. Thanks again for thrashing us in San Diego. Better be more shows in the future.

  7. Welcome to Hell... USA!!Hahahaa!!
    Been a long ass wait to see you fuckers and hope you add a Florida date!
    Nice warm weather,killer food and drink,True metalheads here that kill shit all the time!
    Safe travel and hope to thrash with ya soon!

  8. I think they need a day between each show what no party damn it!! Agree with Dezra Ann here real Mexican food is way to go we don't call it Taco Hell in states for nothing! Sounds like shows are going well though keep on thrashing out guys!

  9. Nige... Since we didn't get a chance to party... when ya all come back in 2013... It's ON! And I won't take "NO" for an answer.

  10. Well this blog certainly conflicts with reality. I was at the Santa Clara show, there certainly wasn’t enough people to form a queue. Most of the few people that were there came to see M Pire who’s sound was awesome and left before Onslaught came on who’s sound was woeful. I was talking to the guys from Evil Dead who seemed to think friendship was far from how you described it also! There is a good old American saying, it goes something like this…..

    “The worst lies are the lies we tell ourselves”

    M Pire Evil you guys KILLED US!

    1. Santa Clara???? The post says LA about the queue! Nige tells that Santa Clara was a nightmare.... I was there, the show was poorly attended but the sound was great unless you went to the sides where the sound was for ALL bands quite muddy.

      It seems that the saying goes to you... or maybe you simply cannot read the posts!

  11. Wait till u guys,Cone to NY,the show,will be nuts,and ill take,u guys,to Duff's bar after

  12. Regarding the comment by Anonymous on the Santa Clara show:
    First of all, having a different view on things and happenings does not necessarily mean someone else lies and, in general, I ask you to be sensitive to the tone of anything you write at this place and any other FA account.

    In this special case, your insult is even based on your own mistake. Nige mentioned a queue of people at the L.A. show, not at Santa Clara the day before. In addition, the show was all ages only until 10pm. Discrediting Onslaught for the young people that had to leave then is just ridiculous and a lousy trick.

    Feel free to come back here to contribute to this blog in a moderate tone any time, but check your facts next time before posting!

  13. Thanks for coming to Dayton! I took a lil' road trip about 2 hours down the road to come see you and was not disappointed. It was a great show and hopefully we can see you guys back in the states again sooner than later! Cheers!

  14. Finally! Was waiting for the El Paso entry. Can pretty much say that what the dudes from Onslaught say is true though the bikers at the venue weren't truly there for you guys nor M:PIRE OF EVIL, hell not even the local band(Nexul by the way if you guys didn't hear their name.)for that matter but other than that the night was good, especially a friend of mine stage diving and crashing to the floor and continuing to pit. Will be wainting for your 2013 return. Lates!