IT’S ELECTRIC IN SAN FRANCISCO FOR DIAMOND HEAD

Dave Bonney. First Published 2016.

I’ve now added another three hours sleep to the four I got on the first night, which brings my total shut-eye since Tuesday morning to an insomnia inducing seven hours.

To be honest I was expecting it to be the opposite with the jet lag hitting me like a tonne of lead but it just hasn’t happened. I guess the natural high I’m experiencing is understandable considering what I’m undertaking.

At the moment I’m sitting in the van next to Dean, the band’s agent from Minneapolis who has me creased up with his penile dysfunction story… more about that in the next tour diary entry.

So yeah, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Breakfast in San Francisco was a jovial affair with everyone in high spirits after flying in the previous night.

Recalling French phrases from school years gone by, with Brian and Abbz attempting credible recitals, however my own ‘ouvre le chein’ didn’t go down too well, with Abbz eagerly pointing out, “you can’t open a feckin’ dog Dave!”

The short journey into the city left us with a few hours to kill after loading in, as union rules wouldn’t allow us to put anything on stage until 16:00, so we headed off to the nearest food joint to fuel up and watch Spurs live on TV in the Champions League in the middle of the afternoon… just weird!

While Ras was doing his best impression of Man vs Food with his repeat order of the chicken sandwich, Brian went for a wander downtown and returned shortly after exclaiming the place was full of auto centres. It definitely wasn’t the most salubrious area of Frisco.

With gear set up and soundcheck done after 17:00 due to noise regulations, I watched the two local support bands while the band gave interviews in the dressing room. The contrast between the two bands couldn’t have been more acute, with one being a well oiled, rehearsed and tight impressive unit and the other… well we’ll leave it there!

It was great to see Emma Edmands (nee Barnett) from Total Rock Radio for the first time since she moved from London to San Fran with her new husband, who was there to interview Brian.

I also had a catch up with Tom Draper, former guitarist of Angel Witch and now playing in Johnny Lima’s band after he too relocated over the pond.

Diamond Head hit the stage bang on time at 22:00 to a boisterous bunch of Metal maniacs and it wasn’t long before a pit was up and running. It was Karl’s first gig with his epic new custom made Crockett Tubs kit, finished off in a beautiful vintage white mother of pearl. This is a beast of a kit based on the old Slingerlands that Karl loves so much, bringing out his jazz roots. The sound from this thing is huge.

I’m not going do a full scale review of every gig in this diary but you’ll be getting the San Francisco review by Tony Conley here on MetalTalk very soon.

Next stop LA and the iconic Whiskey A Go-Go.

diamond head


“Without Diamond Head, none of this would have existed…”
Lars Ulrich – Metallica

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