Carson Wells: 'Lads on tour'

Carson Wells lads on tour With the Carson Wells/Human Hands tour starting this evening in York, we asked the former to write something for our blog about their travels,  tour habits, and particularly what they do to kill time on the (frequently long) journeys to and from shows. Here are a some words on the subject by their drummer, Iain. You can see the full list of dates for their tour here.


Vested Interest kindly asked us to write a piece on our travels over the last year from The Silver City of Aberdeen across Britain. We were lucky enough to play many gigs last year, following our first venture south of the border - in January - with Edinburgh miserable-ists, the late your neighbour the liar. Before this, as natives of Aberdeen, we had never even heard of London and thought Nottingham was from the fantasy epic, Robin Hood. We never knew of the wonders of Wolverhampton city centre and all its Greggs. We’d never marvelled in earnest at Gem Prout’s tea cupboard (not a euphemism, she has a lot of tea in her kitchen cupboard and it’s extraordinary). We’d never been to so many Costco cafes, thus living off of their chicken bakes (apparently 1200 calories a pop). Huw and I had never had an actual fight in a service station carpark. We’d never heard a member of your neighbour the liar say more than one word in a sentence. Mostly, we’d never developed the habits that you develop while driving long distances. We’d heard of Manchester as that’s where Sir Alex went after he managed Aberdeen FC. We then felt incredibly privileged to tour in April with Baton Rouge, who are some of the best humans we’ve encountered from a personal and musical perspective.   This was followed up in November with two weekends of journeying to England (which we sadly had to work in the middle of). A tour with Kaddish - which was pretty much the end of music for Ross and Huw, having been enamoured with them as youths – and a one of show at About Time #2. This is when the true meaning of on the road became starkly apparent. I think we had the Thursday and Friday off for the tour with Kaddish, in order to play three shows in Sheffield, Nottingham and Manchester. We then drove from Nottingham to Aberdeen on the Sunday, leaving time to iron our shirts for work on the Monday morning. Then worked a 5 day week, which I seem to remember was crazy busy having taken the Thursday and Friday off from the previous week, then left work at 5pm on the Friday to make our way down to Albany Road, which would act as our half way house before playing About Time #2 in Peckham at 2pm the following day. So off we went at roughly 08:30 to make our merry way down to London, not realising Saturday traffic in London is literally worse than death by 1000 cuts. We ended up arriving roughly twenty minutes before we went on to meet a worried looking Ross, who had already been in London at the time. We explained that we’d been in Central London, in traffic, for 3 hours and his worry fittingly turned to sympathy. You forget that the population of London is more than double of that of Scotland. After we’d played About Time #2, I proceeded to become the drunkest man, almost completely estranged Huw and his girlfriend and insisted to Tim Kinsella that he was Mike Kinsella and played in the band American Football. My Kinsella Chronology is poor, but I’ve never claimed to have a legitimate taste in Emo, or even music. This leads quite nicely to how we have gotten through all of these long journeys: 90s pop music. It was the Friday night before About Time #2 and myself, Huw and Ewan from Black Lake were on route to Albany Road to spend the night. As mentioned before, we were meeting Ross there. It wasn’t until Glasgow that we realised we hadn’t listened to anything other than 90s pop. We’d had Spice Girls, All Saints, Eminem, Celine Dion; even Ace of Base and Savage Garden made an appearance. Upon realising this, we made a plan of not listening to anything other than 90s pop until we arrived at Albany Road. At this point we were half way on our 6 hour journey. We managed it fine, which is no real accomplishment as we all love 90s pop. I will add that this probably wouldn’t have happened had Ross been in the car and that’s a compliment: he enjoys actual music. Other than indulging our terrible tastes in music, we have many other habits. Ross, as the intellectual in the band, enjoys to read, often finishing an entire book on a short tour. This man will not be seen on the road without his North Face jacket and travel pillow. He mostly tolerates mine and Huw’s flatulence and perpetual idiocy. He is mostly the quiet, contemplative one; the philosopher and the moral compass of the band. Our captain, who leads by example. I live up to the stereotype of the drummer, always vying for attention and conveniently disappearing at load in/load out times. I’m a beast behind the wheel, however, and put in a good shift. After about 4 hours of tour I become insufferably annoying and whichever band we are touring with are palpably worried about what they’ve let themselves in for. Eventually I win most people over. I basically work as the dickhead of the band and need to be fed overpriced Costas every 3-4 hours to put an edge to my caffeine vice. Huw is the brawn. He spends a lot of his time telling me I’m the worst person, but I know he truly loves my ways. He is normally the second biggest dickhead in the van/car at any given time and instead of vying for attention, vies for affection. He has a big heart. He is also the brains behind loading in. He must have had a penchant for Tetris as a child, or something, ‘cause that guy makes the seemingly impossible possible. Huw cannot yet drive vans, as he’s only 17, which is his biggest handicap. So we get through it all fine. We have differing styles, but we complement each other well. I personally love the long trips to London and have a growing appreciation for all the British cities. We plan on visiting plenty more, with our first shows in Leicester and York featuring in our forthcoming tour with Human Hands. My God, we’ve been lucky with the bands that kindly agree to tour with us. I just hope they tolerate our ways. CARSON WELLS DRIVE FORD