When we arrived at the 4th Ave our first thoughts were “ok, this is going to be the worst show we’ve ever played”. We walked in and it was a sports bar. No cover charge, no flyers, ESPN on the televisions and the place was populated by a mix of jocks, thugs, skanky looking girls and some pool playing cowboys. We soon noticed the back room which did have a very large stage with a band playing. The sight of real stage was encouraging but the vibe was not. The band was ok, sort of an alternative/indie/rock thing, but the “crowd” consisted of 20-30 bored looking people sitting at tables drinking heavily. I don’t mean to sound jaded but when we go to a show we expect other similar bands. These people had no idea what they were in for and from the looks of the patrons they would be not be enjoying their evening with 800 Octane. I had a quick meeting with Justin and confessed I was totally cool with turning around and just going home. He agreed. We went out to run our idea by the others but it was too late as they already met the promoter. He was well aware of what we sounded like and had actually requested us so we were finally a little encouraged. Additionally we met a couple that drove down from Seattle jut to see us. Game on. The promoter said we’d play second which was cool since the first band was just finishing their set. The third band was not stoked by this decision and one of them broke off into a cursing fit and started bitching at everyone for changing the order. I wanted to offer up a “we only play 30 minutes” explanation, but in the end decided I really didn’t care that much. Let him be angry. They probably wouldn’t like us anyway. We set up and tried our best to dodge the looks of the country and western fans a few steps away whose pool games we would soon interrupt. We’re getting ready to start and an amazing thing happens, a steady stream of folks in black band shirts shows up and stands up front. This is good. People are standing and they might actually be there to see us. Amen. We started and thank god for the folks up front as they made the show amazing. They shouted, cheered, sang along and were a fricking riot to play to. There were only a dozen of them but we quickly forgot about everything else there and played what I even thought was a pretty badass set. In my head we could have been playing the Rose Garden. It’s amazing how easy it is to forget your surroundings when you’ve got people that are genuinely entertained in front of you. We can’t thank the group of folks that showed up enough. The last band (who was still irritated they were playing last) did admirably. I’m thankful we didn’t have to follow them because as I predicted they were on stage for over an hour. They do get the prize for owning one of the oddest band vehicles ever which appeared to be an airport shuttle bus. Funniest moment was while we were loading up the truck (the van is still immobilized) when Dustin, who has a few drinks in him, gets accosted from across the parking lot by a girl who is inexplicably looking for a cheeseburger. Girl: “Do you have a cheeseburger?”. Dustin – “Yeah I got a cheeseburger”. Girl – “You have a cheeseburger?”. Dustin – “Yeah I have your cheeseburger”. The girl then turns to her friends and begins to walk away. Dustin proceeds to shout “Come get your meat baby”. Quite possibly the strangest interaction I’ve heard in ages. Anyway, thanks to the manager and sound guy at the club as well as those who stood up front and had a good time with us.