Posted on May 30, 2018
In The Endless Zanhyang We Are
From the left: Geonseok (bass) | Haram (guitar) | Dayoung (vocal) | Sunghoon (drum)
! LEEK ! It has been twelve days since we came to the UK. Except for a couple of days, every day has been very clear. Therefore we haven’t really experienced the stereotypical gloomy weather of the UK. What a surprise. Including today, we will have been performing for three consecutive days. From tomorrow, we will have two days of rest, so guess I can just endure it.
For some reason, I thought that the average age of the audience at LEEK was higher than that of other venues. Probably because I judge based on what I saw on the stage. When I was disassembling instruments, two girls came up to me. They said they used to listen to K-pop (when I asked them who they like, they answered Twice and BTS), and said that they enjoyed our performance.
After the show, as usual I played Tetris while loading instruments into the trunk.
Now, since we’ll be having two days of rest, we had to say goodbye to Eyre Llew and two Jacks.
It was around eight or nine when the show was over but it was still bright outside (in the UK, it is still bright outside at around eight in the evening in summer). When we were done with organizing our instruments, it was almost twelve. Today, we stayed at Sam’s house (the speed racer I mentioned earlier). At a Chinese restaurant, we ate fried rice for supper, and had a conversation with Sam’s father.
It has been only a short period of time, but I feel that so many people have helped us out during this tour. And thanks to them, I was able to stay healthy. This is being enabled by all of us. Thanks so so much!
In The Endless Zanhyang We Are & Eyre Llew after concert @ LEEK
We had a holiday finally. I slept so much, and it was so sweet! There’s a Hammond organ in Sam’s room; he said he bought it for three pounds at some sort of flea market. It makes cute squishy sounds. I was envious of it. Especially of the fact that he bought it for only three pounds. Most of the houses and accommodation we have visited have yards.
I ate cereal for breakfast, sat on a comfy chair and watched The Lord Of The Rings without subtitles, then fell asleep. When I woke up, Patrick had arrived at Sam’s house.
We promised to meet Sam again the day after tomorrow, and at Patrick’s parents’ place, we ate really good Indian-style curry. It was probably one of the most delicious meals I’ve had since I came to the UK.
When we returned to our accommodation, we decided to spend our next day in London.
We went to London. First, we headed to the National Gallery at Charing Cross. Some paintings were big enough to fill an entire wall, and some paintings were as small as my palm. I went to a place where many people had gathered, and there were paintings by Vincent van Gogh. It was quite strange to see the paintings that I had seen only in art books right in front of me. There were also paintings by Klimt and Monet. I remember I used to love the paintings of Monet when I was young.
So we walked a little more, took a look at the London Eye and other areas nearby, and got ready to go back home. It takes an hour to get home from central London, but suddenly the route of the train had changed. Later I was told that the train route had changed because a person was standing in the middle of the railroad. It was quite hard to find the right bus that could get us home. Eventually we ended up getting off at a place nearby our destination, and Patrick came to pick us up.
I became hungry as I had used so much of my brain, and I ate a big hamburger set. It was a strange day on which I realized people have a hard time when they leave their homes.
Today, we are performing and camping in Sheffield. Actually today is my birthday. We headed to the camping site from our accommodation at Banbury, made our tent, and went to the venue at Sheffield. There’s lots of delicacies to try in Sheffield, but there were comparatively more Asian restaurants than in other towns. And the box of ramen I found at an Asian grocery store felt so pleasant, as if meeting an old friend after a long time.
We arrived a little earlier than the scheduled load-in time, so we waited to see Eyre Llew and the engineering of the venue. As soon as Eyre Llew arrived, they gave me an unknown green colored object, which was a bottle of soju. And they started singing me the birthday song. It was a special soju with our band’s sticker attached to it. They said that they had bought the soju in Nottingham. Thank you.
So again we started moving the instruments into the venue. After the rehearsal, we went to eat supper at a restaurant called ‘Nandos’ with Sam’s father. I ate a plate of chicken marinated in an unknown sauce with sides. The hottest option for the plate was called ‘extra hot,’ but that option was rather more sour&spicy than actually spicy. Eyre Llew, if you get to try ‘buldakbokummyeon’ (the spiciest ramen on the Korean market) when you come to Korea, you guys will be stunned! Ha ha ha..
If there was something that really intrigued me, was how casually Sam’s father ate supper with Sam’s friends. They really treated Sam’s father with barely any formality. Sam’s father has a good sense of humor, and is very delightful (Sam and long-haired Jack asked Sam’s father to bring them bottles of cokes, but Sam’s dad replied, “I’m not your waiter” then took out cups from the shelf). Not long after, we did our gig at the venue. After the show, someone gave us a cake as a present. Later I found out that he was the promoter of the venue.
Ever since I came to the UK, I’ve been seeing a lot of bands with original settings. Eyre Llew as well is not a team with typical settings (Sam sings while playing the guitar, and long-haired Jack plays the keyboard and a drum at the same time, and the other Jack uses a bow to play his instrument). When I realized that their performance come from their natural musicality and not from meticulous calculation, and when that makes for a very good ensemble, I feel very happy as a listener. Pretty much everything that I encounter is pleasant.
In The Endless Zanhyang We Are @ West Street Live, Sheffield
Eyre Llew @ West Street Live, Sheffield
When I came back, a weird barbeque party was happening at our place. It was after midnight, and we put up our cell phones with the flashes turned on up on tree branches. Then we starting cooking and drinking. In the UK, whenever I talk with people who play in a band or who have ever visited Korea, they ask whether I brought soju with me. I bet they really love soju. I probably should have pride in soju.
It was an ordinary but a very special day. I will always remember that I performed and had a barbeque the day before my birthday.
It’s very cold at dawn, and so was today. We all laughed very hard, and had a very good time. I feel very happy. I’m getting lots of consideration and warmth from people around me. Thank you for today, as well.
It was so cold at night that I had to wear two pairs of socks, and when I woke up I felt a pleasant warmth surrounding me. Since I arrived in the UK, I’m hearing more sounds of wind in the trees and the sounds of animals, than car sounds. I don’t think I’ve heard the sounds of car horns ever since I came to this place.
After having breakfast, we went hiking. Eyre Llew had a gig today in Leeds so after having their breakfast they headed straight down to the venue, and with Patrick we went on a hike. Today the place we went to is called ‘Peak District,’ which is a mountain path along the side of the campsite. When I saw it from below, it simply seemed like a high hill, but as I climbed, I was convinced that it was more appropriate to call it ‘hiking.’
In the UK, there are a lot of large and small grassy hills, and we can see animals such as sheep, cows and horses up there very often. On the way up the mountain, we could see many flocks of sheep. Before I went up the hill, sheep were simply cute, white fluffy animals for me. But as I went up, I got more and more respect for the sheep. There weren’t any proper paths for travelers so we climbed up along the paths that sheeps had made. We crossed the bushes, and climbed to the top, and took a nice nap. I then contemplated about what to make once I got back home. I originally thought that climbing up was the only arduous task when hiking, but coming down was a harder task. I stepped in a big pile of mud, so my shoes got very dirty, and my trousers got wet. On the way back to the camping site, I washed my feet in the creek.
We went to the supermarket and bought various kinds of food, and cooked ramen and meat. I could feel that we were really camping as we cooked ramen. To be honest, all British foods are quite terrible. So ramen is the food of our salvation. I love you ramen. Thank you ramen.
After starting a fire on charcoal, we sat around the fire and had a conversation. It seemed like some sort of candlelit ceremony, but in fact pretty much none of the conversation we had was constructive. It’s cold today again. Guess I’ll have to wear three pairs of socks.
Sam grilling barbecue
After two days of camping out in the beautiful Peak District we packed up our stuff and headed to Manchester, where our next show was. We were camping there too, so after a brief trip into the city we headed back out the the countryside to set up our tents again. Manchester is well known for loads of different things, but above all I was most excited because it’s the city where the Gallagher Brothers of Oasis grew up. 'Bunny Jacksons,' was the name of the venue where our show took place, set in the middle of the city among some comparatively big and modern buildings. Our show was a late one, we were to start at midnight.
After unloading all the gear from Eyre Llew’s van (a task that has become second nature to us now), we had a delicious supper. The bar had a special on chicken wings, each one costing only 10 pence. Despite being so cheap, they were really delicious. There aren't many restaurants we can go to late in the evening in England, but I recommend that if you come to Manchester, you come here to enjoy some live music and delicious food.
Tonight, after Eyre Llew (as always) did a spectacular job, it was our turn to play. We went up on the stage, squished ourselves into the tiny space and started playing. Today I put in extra effort because I was not quite satisfied with the performance in Sheffield on the 22nd (one of the guitar strings broke and everything seemed to go wrong). Around the middle of our performance I looked at my right hand, and saw that there was blood everywhere. I think I had gotten so excited that I managed to cut my finger up. Since I didn't feel any pain, I just kept on playing. After that performance, Patrick came to us and said, "your last song sounded very aggressive!" I showed him my finger, and we all laughed after Patrick said, "wow, you really WERE angry then."
In The Endless Zanhyang We Are & Eyre Llew @ Bunny Jackson, Manchester
And it was raining outside again when we came out the venue...
Camping in the rain sucks. The hardest thing is taking the tent down and packing it away in the rain. Today we had a show in Chester. Not so far from Manchester, Chester is a city with a beautiful landscape, with old buildings and small rivers. It was fun to step into an old city with very English gloomy weather. I like the gloomy weather days in England better than the sunny, clear ones. Those days where the sun suddenly disappears and rain starts to fall... you never have any idea what the weather will do. It seems like people don’t bother with umbrellas here. We joined them in that and just covered our heads with our jacket hoods.
A street in Chester
After a brief tour of the city, we loaded in our gear at the 'Lock Keeper'. Today we are performing on the second floor of the pub; it’s a cool space for shows. Compared to the other shows on the tour so far, there were not so many people there today, but we focused on our show and I think we still put on a good performance for those that were there. Because the tour is heading towards the end now, every show feels precious to us and it is sad when each one comes to a close. The thought that popped in my head at the end when everyone was clapping for us was, 'Ah, I love doing this.'
Once Eyre Llew had finished their performance, we all loaded all the gear into the van. In two days’ time, we will be performing in Nottingham, the home town of Eyre Llew. Then our long UK tour will finally meet its end. I was saying farewell with a sad heart, but Jack came over and gave me a hug and told us to take a rest and that we would see each other again in two days. It felt weird because the tour really feels like it is coming to an end now. After a few drinks, we were super tired and headed back to Patrick’s sister’s house near Oxford to pass out.
Once morning came around, Clare’s boyfriend Stamos made brunch for us. He is a vibrant person from Greece. Since today was our day off, we spent some time working on the computers at Clare’s place. It seemed like Stamos was our own private chef today. First he made us pancakes; some with bacon, some with fruit and some with chocolate sauce. We also had champagne with them. It was my first time drinking a glass of champagne as soon as I opened my eyes in the morning. I heard his family (back in Greece) make 50 liters of wine and olive oil every year, and that's not for sale, they just make it for themselves. I think it's similar to Korean kimchi. When I told him there's a refrigerator specially designed for kimchi, he seemed intrigued.
After collecting and organizing information about the delegates of Primavera and completing some work as well, we got to enjoy some more of Stamos’ amazing cooking. Undoubtedly, it was among the best food we have eaten here in England. I was not so interested before, but now I want to visit Greece someday. Ha ha!
We ate good food, had good conversations, and finished all our work as well. We also managed to have a good rest. Tomorrow we are going to Nottingham, the home of Eyre Llew, for Dot To Dot festival. It's exciting to finally be able to see Eyre Llew live on a big stage. But also sad that our tour is nearing its end.
Tour Diary (Click the links below)
In The Endless Zanhyang We Are
UK/Europe Tour Schedule
English Translation: Robin YeongGuk Jo
Edited by: Rock 'N' Rose