Vienna, 1st June
M and I had a crazy few days between shows whilst we left Switchfoot to play a couple more shows on the continent. We travelled back home for a brief half day to unpack and repack, pick up our passports and leave again on the 2am coach to Köln, for a surreal full day and two nights of travel to get to Vienna. But we survived! It was surprisingly ok spending two consecutive full nights on public transport, perhaps it was because it was for a good cause! We had three fantastic days exploring the city and surroundings, seeing the natural history museum, climbing the eastern most ‘Alps’ (not impressively high that far out!), eating icecream and sightseeing, before catching up with Switchfoot again for the show on our last night there.
This was the sweatiest, dirtiest, craziest rock show I have ever been to! It was around 30oC out, and can’t have been much cooler inside the underground venue even before we all packed into it. We were so hot we were sweating and desperate for air even before the music began!
The crowd were super hyped up, and as it turned out, dominated by Romanian fans, who were really excited to be seeing Switchfoot at all, even if they’d had to travel for it. They yelled and roared and jumped all the way through! When Jon asked the crowd where everyone was from he seemed completely amazed when almost half the audience seemed to be calling back ‘Romania!’; you could see the guys were really humbled by it, and thinking to themselves ‘we need to find a way to play Romania!’.
This was the show I was in the best position for, right on the crowd barrier between Jon and Drew. But it wasn’t just Jon interacting with the crowd this time; Tim and Drew both came right out to play across the crowd barrier and connect with the fans, which was so special, and even Chad and Jerome came forward and interacted with us far more than usual – usually they are tied to their instruments at the back of the stage. I was glad I later got the chance to thank them for that. It was really special.
At one point Jon spoke about entropy – how everything falls apart, and that makes sense, but that there’s something greater, the mystery that holds us together, and transitioned into Your Love Is A Song. I later found this interview he’d given earlier that day, speaking about the same theme. It excites me in a geeky sort of way that he often deals with the idea of entropy, although my ideas on the subject are subtly different it’s a powerful concept that I’ve thought a lot about too. That’s probably for another post 🙂
The venue was very grimy – I got grimy off the crowd barrier, as did my banners, and Jon climbed something at one point and came down covered in black grime – and then crowd surfed back over us and we got grimy too!! I was crowd surfed on twice during the show 🙂 And then the sweat – we were all soaked, and Jon went through 3 tshirts! 😛 😀 But who cares, it was awesome 😀
All my banners came out again – Tim really seemed to like the ‘I can feel the ocean’ banner, he kept on looking at it and pointing, and he’d smiled at it when it came out at BCDO too! I had the ‘Thank you’ banner out whilst they played Dare You To Move; when Jon got to the line ‘Everyone’s here’ he looked at me and gave me a smile whilst singing it, it was so sweet of him! The ‘Where I Belong’ banner got taken up on stage this time – Jon came up and took it from me as they were beginning the song and said ‘it’s beautiful!’ 🙂 Here’s a vid of the song. We (…well, mostly those Romanians…) wouldn’t let them go after just one encore, so they came back on to play us The Sound to finish.
At the end we burst out onto the street desperate for fresh air and feeling really gross! And M was there! He decided to only get tickets to come with me to the BCDO and Mannheim shows, but was starry enough to accompany me to and from the Vienna and Munich shows where I’d otherwise have had to travel back to the hostels on my own. He was rewarded with another aftershow (turns out he’d been listening to the encore literally through a hole in the venue wall beforehand though!); this time it was a bit chaotic as we were crowding the bus. Tour manager Ike came out and tried to move us to the other side of the road where there was a garage, and there was a twitter announcement, but we were given no location so we milled around in the street till Jon came out and took us over there! It was totally owned by the Romanians, they made all the requests, sang along and harmonised, and put a Romanian flag on Jon! I was stood between M and Jon, and it was lovely hearing M singing along with him 🙂
Jon played Only Hope, Caroline, Souvenirs, Vice Verses, This Is Home and House Of God Forever. Afterwards, despite the crowd, I managed to get to him to thank him, and he thanked me for being there!!
We waited for the bus to leave again, and as it pulled out we saw a crazy huge fireball meteor go across the sky!