18 November 2006
Show day, Melbourne.
Had a good solid nights sleep for the first time in a while, waking to find Melbourne in a state of complete lock down. The G20 summit is being held here but for some reason they decided to hold it in a hotel right in the middle of the downtown area. The surrounding roads are closed and very seriously barricaded, meaning that shops and businesses have had to close too, causing much consternation. Seeing that trying to get anywhere at all was going to be a challenge, I opted for a low-key morning. I actually did some ironing in my hotel room, which I concede was spectacularly un-rock & roll of me, but oddly comforting.
Came down to the venue mid afternoon when U2 came in for a lengthy soundcheck and to play through a few songs that we havent heard for a while.
This venue has a retractable roof, which can be fully open or completely closed depending on the weather. Its been absolutely gorgeous today so the roof was wide open, in the knowledge that we could do a hasty cover up in case of hail, plague of frogs, etc. It also means we dont have to have a roof on our mix position which allows us to feel much more of the atmosphere and energy of the crowd which I always love.
It was a good show too, attended by a great many people Ive known for a long time, plus even more friends of friends, most of whom I managed to shoehorn onto the mix position guest platform. Lance Bangs was present, he being a filmmaker friend of mine from R.E.M. days in Athens, GA. Hed brought along Spike Jonze, Catherine Keener and some of the crew from the movie of Where the Wild Things Are, which is being shot in Melbourne.
There was an after-show do in the club lounge back at the hotel, which was full to capacity, loud and fun. I sat gassing with old friends till the wee small hours, ending up being the last to leave. So much so that the ultra-polite hotel staff, who hadnt the confidence to tell us to bugger off to our beds, began cleaning up around us, eventually laying tables for breakfast, bringing out large bowls of breakfast cereals covered in cling film. We finally took the hint and got out of there just before first light.