5 Tour Tips To Maintain A Sense Of Sanity Shared By The Church

The Church are a psych-rock band from Australia.
Our eclectic team of writers from around Australia – and a couple beyond – with decades of combined experience and interest in all fields.

Well into their fifth decade of life, Aussie psych-rock icons The Church are coming off one of their most productive years yet.

The release of their 26th studio album, 'The Hypnogogue', brought newfound attention that led to extensive touring nationally as well as overseas performances (that continues in 2024 with a massive US tour in June-July alongside Afghan Whigs).

Led by Steve Kilbey and beautifully complemented by long-time collaborator, drummer and producer Tim Powles, along with ever-talented guitarists Ian Haug and Ashley Naylor, plus multi-instrumentalist Jeffrey Cain, 'The Hypnogogue' reinforced The Church's legacy while opening doors for a new legion of fans to embrace the group.

Geared towards more releases in 2024 and beyond (the band is intent that this decade of their career will be one of their most fulfilling yet), The Church kick-off their year with a couple of local live performances.

They'll hit Brisbane early March followed the next day for a road trip to Tamworth as part of the NSW Government's Great Southern Nights live music programme.

With a career's worth of experience to draw from, here the group share their tips to maintaining some semblance of sanity when grouped together in tight spaces while touring.

1: Buy a bicycle at the start of the tour and throw it in the trailer

I always try to buy a cheap bike at the start of a tour. This is a great way to get a bit of exercise while on the road, and to see more of a town than you would if just on foot. It also is a way to get through a sketchy area quicker if you take a wrong turn.

My favourite bike was a Frankenstein bike that a small bike shop put together for me. There's usually someone in a bike shop that likes the idea of using up some spare parts that are sitting around in a store.

Failing this. . . it's amazing how cheap one is in Walmart. Then at the end of the tour I gift it to someone who looks like they need it/ might be able to use it. I've attempted to store the bikes between tour before, but two times they have been ruined, and then are no good to anyone. I will hopefully be able to hire one in Tamworth and have a wee ride.

2: Pack Vegemite

This is great for on the bus/ in the band room. I save literally thousands of dollars on tour by trying to never eating out for breakfast. A six-week tour. . . And $15-20 (USD) on breakfast every day adds up. Tea and toast will do me. That's my ritual. Pretty rock & roll huh?

3: Have a stretch/ do yoga every day

I bought a yoga mat a couple of tours ago that is stored with equipment in USA.

4: Good headphones are essential

Whether watching a movie on downtime, or listening to music, I always travel with the best headphones that I own. It sounds obvious, but it's awful to go without.

It is also worth mentioning that I always travel with a portable bluetooth speaker, because it's pretty bleak sitting in a quiet backstage area, and it's pretty antisocial if everyone is sitting around with headphones on. Some places have a stereo system set up, but most don't. I mean, God forbid a band actually having to sit around talking to each other.

5: Sleep Sleep Sleep

Staying up late is a byproduct of touring/ playing shows. I find it impossible to fall asleep within three hours of playing a show, so it's important for me to catnap when I can, and sleep in when I can. I mean. . . Lionel Richie.

The Church 2024 Tour Dates

Thu 7 Mar - The Triffid (Brisbane)
Fri 8 Mar - Great Southern Nights @ West Tamworth Leagues Club (Tamworth)

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