Full Of Rage With Nicolas Cage Tour Blog 4 – Laura V of The Animal In Me

2016
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Hello everyone! We are stoked to have hopped on the Full of Rage with Nicolas Cage tour! We are four shows in and it’s been a blast so far. First stop was Las Cruces, NM! Since we’re near San Francisco,  we gave ourselves a full day to drive out.  We’ve been on Interstate 10 too many times to count, so we had to stop at the infamous rest area that has “The Thing.” We won’t give it all away, but it involves Hitler, torture chambers, and a mummy. They also have a huge assortment of dream catchers, turquoise, and fireworks. Fireworks are tour essentials if you didn’t know…

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We arrived in Las Cruces and finally got to meet the guys and gal of It Lives, It Breathes and The Nearly Deads! It’s always awesome to see another chick on the road like myself! We were greeted by the venue with yard long subs, score! We hung out and mingled before we had to play. We have a band tradition to listen to Trans-Siberian Orchestra before we go on, so we blasted TSO in the van, took a pre show shot, and we were ready to go! The show was super fun, the crowd was so energetic! I decided to do some DIY merch for this tour and I crafted some TAIM hair bows. Las Cruces scored the first few! I’m glad I brought the materials with me so I can make them as we go! 

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Next stop Mesa! I love playing Mesa, AZ we always have a great time. The downtown area is great with cool sculptures lining the sidewalks as you go. We filmed the video for our ‘Call Me Maybe’ cover there two years ago and had a blast. We’ve played The Underground a few times now, so we love seeing familiar faces in the crowd as well as new ones! We met these two great guys right after we pulled up, Johnny and Ryan. They had found our band on YouTube only 2 weeks before we were supposed to play and saw we were coming to town! Nothing but magical moments coming from Mesa; appropriate that there’s a Cinderella mural one building over. The Underground is a downstairs venue, so everyone gets extra rowdy and sweaty! I love it. After the show we hit up Denny’s, a 5 star tour restaurant. I always feel obligated to eat breakfast there no matter what time of day it is. So after brinner (breakfast for dinner) we had a normal van slumber party in the Wal-mart parking lot. I always wake up earlier than the guys the next day so I can get ready without them rushing me. Ladies think you’re weird when you brush your teeth in public restrooms, but I literally have no shame when it comes to my morning routine on tour. Teeth brushed, baby wipe showered up, then we were goin goin, back back, to Cali Cali!

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After what seemed like eternity, we pulled up to Clash City Studios in Riverside! It was Halloweeve (halloween eve) so people were dressed up lookin fresh! I threw on my Frankenstein praying hands shirt to get in the spirit. The venue is outdoors with a sweet cityscape behind the stage. The show was awesome! I love taking hats and glasses off of people and wearing them while we play. I was able to snag a mask from someone and rocked it for a bit. I could barely see so I gave it back pretty quickly haha! After the show, I talked with one of the venue owners, Big Ben, for a while and got him to rep a TAIM bow in his beard. He was legit. Shane’s aunt lives an hour out so we had a place to stay for the night! She had tons of food for us when we arrived; it was gone within minutes. We all went swimming, watched crappy cable TV, and had a great time! 

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The next morning was Halloween! We had breakfast, did some laundry and then we were off to San Diego! I begged the guys to dress up with me for the show, so we hit up the mall and the guys were scouting for costumes. On Halloween. So the pickings were slim. Good thing I have a bunch of makeup with me so I painted all of their faces later. I went as Beetlejuice, naturally. I tried doing my makeup in our moving van which was a total fail, I had black lipstick everywhere. When we got to Woody’s Burgers, everyone was in the Halloween spirit! The promoter was having a costume contest which was awesome. We played with two great local bands, Afraid of My Neighbor and Here Lies the Hero! Vio is the lead singer for AOMN and what a bad ass chick she was! Shane actually recorded HLTH a while back, such talented dudes! The show was running a little late so we didn’t start until about midnight. We also were having sound problems, so Shane and I just decided to share one mic. Two ingredients for a potentially bad show, but ended up being one of the most fun shows I’ve probably ever played. We were all just feeding off of the energy from the crowd and each other. Halloween brings out the kid in everyone I think. We have another tradition in TAIM, my favorite. If the crowd requests an encore, we request they join us on stage for it. So by the end of the show, we were sharing the stage with zombies, nerds, villains, and I think a chicken. Definitely a highlight of the Full of Rage tour thus far. 

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We drove home in the pouring rain afterwards, getting back to the bay area around 11am. It’s weird and cool to have a couple off days in your home town so we’re just enjoying our beds until it’s time to head back out! I absolutely love being on the road and waking up in a different city everyday. It’s so rewarding to meet people across the US who love your music and support what you do. My bank account isn’t full of money, but my life is rich. Cheesy, but true. Thank you to our party animals, whether you’ve been with us from day one or just discovered us a month ago. TAIM isn’t possible without you. Hope you’re ready to party with us in Portland in a few days! See you out there.

-Laura V

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