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Tour Archive: Diary from 2003 Radiohead tour

July 7 -

So, the first show went well, I guess. Bergamo is a medium sized city just a bit away from Milan. The show was in a large grassy courtyard with a barrier of two-story buildings surrounding. The weather was nice - hot and sunny but not completely unbearable. After their soundcheck, the Radiohead guys one-by-one came over and greeted us - really nice guys. I always thought Johnny, the guitarist, and Phil, the drummer came across as the dark and distant ones, but they too turned out to be very pleasant and talkative. Phil has three kids around Hollis' age who are going to be along for some of the shows. Even their crew were very nice and accommodating. They opened doors while we were still soundchecking our last song and the main gate was directly across at the back of the courtyard. I think the vision of the first 20 or 30 people dashing toward stage while we were playing was more unsettling than seeing the whole crowd later when we finally went on for real. The set went well. We started with "Lordy" and ended with "Soon." It's nice to be on a big enough stage that I can turn up this Vox AC-30 amp to a level that it sounds good. As expected, things sound different all around on such a big stage. Bass frequencies seem to just fly off into the air and get lost. I now know why bands that play such big places need such a pile of amps, etc.

We had to come back to the hotel two-thirds of the way through Radiohead's set to bring Hollis to bed. She fell asleep in Mim's arms two songs into their show. They sounded great. They're playing a few new things, near as I can tell. "2+2=5" is especially exciting and dynamic, live. It's strange to see how much they move around and then how much it comes across out front. Zak and I move around a bit, but from a ways away we probably mostly look like statues. Hopefully get some decent sleep tonight. Still adjusting.