Back Home!

Written by Your Favorite Enemies. Posted in More Than Noise & Make-Believes

We have been back home for a few days now… And we’ve had a few days off. Not so much to recover from jet lag, but only to spend time together.

There are only 2 months left to 2013… It’s crazy to think how fast time has gone by! So much has happened for the band in those 10 months… From the recording of the album “Between Illness And Migration”, to the mixing in New York, its release in Japan and in Australia, the “Youthful Dreams Of An Old Empire” tour that stopped by England, France and Germany, the “More Than Noise And Make-Believes” tour in Australia, Japan, and England… We have been very privileged to meet so many of you on the road, adding new pages to our existing stories or starting a new one as we met for the first time… And I can say, honestly, that there is no place like home… Like sharing time with family… And what is particularly amazing about this family we have is that we know we are home wherever we go around the world. The true wonders of life lay not in what we see, but in the people we share our lives with…

Let’s define the colors our brand new dawn takes every morning… Because when we are together, nothing is impossible… 🙂

– Stephanie


Goodbye Barcelona, Bonjour Paris!

Written by Your Favorite Enemies. Posted in More Than Noise & Make-Believes

Our last day in Barcelona has been an adventure in itself! The day started with 3 of the guys playing cards around the little table there was in our apartment. Jeff, Matt, and Sef… Do I need to tell you who won? Yes, once again, to Jeff’s dismay, Matt won.

We then had a breakfast and went to Starbucks, where we traced our itinerary for the day. Our plan today was to go to Park Güell, that is filled with some of Gaudi’s most famous works. Google map said it would take 1h1min by foot, 3 different itineraries possible. A little long, but we’ve walked so much in the 2 previous days that we’re thinking this won’t be very different. We set out for our journey, amazed right at the start by the Palace of Catalan Music. And what a wonderful place it was! Unable to enter the place, we marvelled at it’s wonders from the outside… And that’s when the true adventure began. Turns out that Park Güell is in top of a hill overlooking the city. That means the whole hour you walk to get there is in an ascent motion. And in case you were curious, no, Google maps doesn’t take this in consideration when they tell you it’s one hour away. Because I can assure you that it took us a lot more than an hour to get there – and for all those of you who ever walked with him, you know how fast Alex walks… But we’ve finally made it!

The entrance of the park is really impressive. That part of the park itself felt enough of a sight, worth all the climbing we have done. We entered the park, admired the arcs made of stone, and walked our way through the bunch of people that was there. And suddenly, as the path turned left, we decided to turn right, attracted by this path that didn’t look like one, as nobody ever walked there. Still, we decided it was that path we’d take. A path that led to the very top of a mountain, a mountain we climbed despite our aching legs and feet.

And the view we had at the top was simply breathtaking. From that point, we had a 360• view of Barcelona. A few seconds after we reached the top, the sun started to set. A wonderful view, better than anything we could have seen in the park below us. We stayed there on top for a few hours, watching the sun completely disappear and watching the city lights go on, one by one, like souls flickering in the distance, as the sun died to a night of blooming promises.

We walked back down the mountain, something that was even harder that climbing it, as this time, there was no light to show us the way… We managed to make it down in one piece, and found ourselves in the middle of Gaudi’s most impressive work. It was dark, and there was no light at all in the park, but for the moon light that reflected on every little piece of Gaudi’s mosaic works. A truly inspiring sight. The pale moonlight gave the place a different nature, a different spirit, one that made you believe that even your craziest dreams were possible.

We walked back home, in 1 hour this time, thanks for walking down the hills this time. And because we couldn’t stop walking; it made our legs hurt too much! Also, we were on schedule, as we had been invited to a flamenco show that night. We stopped at the home to grab a bite, and established some rules for the night, that we’re no little things considering how much we walked that day! Here are the rules…

1) you fall asleep once, you get your meal chosen by someone else (most probably Alex)
2) you fall asleep twice, you need to drink the oil from the tapas plates tonight.
3) you fall asleep 3 times, you go straight to bed

Located a few steps away from our apartment, the show took place in a very old palace, built in year 200. Yes, some 1900 years ago… The place was beautiful, and possessed a vibe that is indescribable. The show transported us in a different world. The guitars, the singing, the clapping of hands and shoes on the floor, the dancing, the dresses flying… It seemed like all of a sudden, we had walked into another era. They, too, made you believe that no matter how crazy your dreams were, they would come true. Because as you see them dance, you couldn’t believe that there was nothing impossible.

We came back home and ate a little before watching a movie, this time “The Purge”, which wasn’t very good… We all went to bed pretty late as we were leaving the next morning and needed to pack and get ready…

We left Barcelona on a gray, cold and rainy day, as if the city had saved its best days for our stay there. The ride to Paris took us roughly 11 hours. We arrived there and decided we’d walk the streets before even checking in. But it was cold in Paris, and walking was painful! We wanted to go to Polidor, a restaurant frequented by some of Alex’s favorite artists, so just decided to go there earlier! What better thing to do in Paris than have cheese and wine? So this is what we decided we’d do… But couldn’t. “Mais c’est un restaurant ici, il faut manger”. So we decided we’d go somewhere else, as we weren’t up for a 3 course meal. We found a lovely place, very welcoming, where we could eat as we wanted… So that is where we went! We shared some food, some wine, and even got a free bottle… We ended the night by a game of pool – Jeff against Matt. Matt won the first, but dramatically lost the second… So Jeff had a tarte tatin at the restaurant… And should have some McDonald’s today!

It’s a brand new day here in Paris… And I am sure it has a lot in stock for us!

– Stephanie

Barcelona, explored at random!

Written by Your Favorite Enemies. Posted in More Than Noise & Make-Believes

Today was a late morning… Somehow, Barcelona seems to be perfect for this! As artistic and lively as the city can be, the high buildings and the narrow back alleys let very little sun shine into our apartment, so much we wake up with the impression it’s going to be a gray day once again. We change our minds pretty quick, as soon as we set foot outside though! Barcelona definitely is the city of eternal sun! This morning, Ben picked up the guitar as some of the other guys were reading in the living room… a truly inspiring start to a day that would be just as incredible! After sharing breakfast, we all headed to Starbucks, to fuel our day with good coffee – and to abuse of their free wifi connection, as the one we have in the apartment never worked. At least, it allows us to really rest, as it’s impossible to work without any connection… 😉

Also, we absolutely needed to stop by the Starbucks that morning. Jeff and Matt challenged each other at Black Jack the night before, and losing a “quitte ou double”, Jeff owed Matt the most expensive cake at Starbucks, as well as a meal at McDonald’s. Well, McDonald’s turned into a Burger King. But fast food chain for fast food chain, it’s all the same, right? I know, I know, it’s probably not the same for all those of you (like Jeff) who are truly in love with McDonald’s. 😉

While Jeff was paying off his Black Jack debts, YB, still at Starbucks, made sure to remind us that Barcelona was also a fashion capital, and that we shouldn’t take his frivolous looks for granted by posing for the cameras… ours, the staff at Starbucks, as well as the passers-by through the window! That’s just how popular YB’s looks is…

After carefully choosing our itinerary for day, we decided we should simply walk the streets, allowing ourselves to be amazed by whatever we would see, and going in whatever direction we wanted. Freedom at its best… See something that interests? Walk towards it. Hear something you like? Stop and listen to it. Feel like entering a store? Visit it. As simple as it gets, this type of visit usually is the best – and believe me, it never gets boring with these guys!

And this is also what got us in a very lovely cake shop, The Cat Factory, in the streets of a neighborhood we never intended to go to, that we wouldn’t be able to replace on a map! But what a lovely shop it was… Half cake shop, half art gallery, the owners of this newly opened place made sure we would find the best cake for Sef… Lidia and Pol, thank you so much! Your hospitality and generosity will have us remember you & your shop for a lifetime! Oh… this, and just how delicious your cake was! Well, we would know too if Sef had left some for us 😉

Those reasons are also the same that brought us to a small local restaurant, with a terrace outside. After walking so much, and with the guys all being hungry, we just had to stop and taste some of the local flavors! We had montaditos, 3 kinds of them… With Spanish omelette, with tomato & cheese, with smoked salmon & cream cheese. Delicious, all of them! Jeff also took the opportunity to try a new beer, called Cruzcampo. Not bad, but he said he preferred the Estrella 😉 YB also met a lovely lady over there, who absolutely wanted a picture with YB because of their difference in height! ps: notice the bread in YB’s hand… He’s been carrying this around (and eating it!) all day long… So you can guess that not only his appearance got him curious looks!

We then made it to Montjuïc, one of the place we had wanted to see, from where we had an incredible view on Barcelona! And it seems like the timing was perfect, as we arrived there just in time to see the sunset and the city brighten up… A truly wonderful thing… 🙂

We kept walking around the place, all around the Barcelona port, in the marina, on the beach (where we will definitely go back during day time!), and then back home, where we wandered the different back streets that surround our apartment in order to find a restaurant. We ended up at another tapas restaurant, reminiscing on the day we had just shared…

We met on our way back a place we will visit again tomorrow, a little earlier in the day… One of Alex’s favorite place, reminding him of a dream of his… a little more about this tomorrow 😉

– Stephanie

Leaving London, witnessing Barcelona for the first time!

Written by Your Favorite Enemies. Posted in More Than Noise & Make-Believes

We had to free days after our shows in London… We are privileged to travel around the world and meet the heart & soul of every city we visit, its people. We rarely have enough time to do anything that would even be close to sightseeing though… So we decided this was how we’d spent our 2 days off in London! Jeff had several ideas of what we could do, from the Russian Circus in Acton Town to parachute and bungee jumping, to any type of other extreme activities. They were all discarded though 😉

We first met in front of Big Ben, from where we would walk along the south bank of the Thames River. And for once, it’s been a very sunny day. A bit cold, but sunny nonetheless. We couldn’t have asked for more. The place itself was amazing, very beautiful… And Sef made sure we wouldn’t find it boring… Just by being Sef! After a few minutes walk, we came across a carousel, and after he insisted so much, we all figured our it would be less trouble to let him ride it than to try and say no… So Sef did have his long-awaited ride on the carousel (and Jeff almost felt like he was a the Russian circus he wanted to go to!). Sef also decided he would dominate the city of London by taming its wildest emblem, a fierce dragon of steel and fire… 😉

We then headed to Covent Garden, where we met with 2 more friends, and where we have witnessed a wonderful sunset, a rare sight in London 🙂 Covent Garden is a wonderful place, one that we all loved very much, and a place where we definitely will go back 🙂 we finished the night at a pub, that we weren’t much impressed with. The times we shared, however, are times we will remember forever.

The next day, we all met close to the Tower Bridge, a bridge that we all wanted to see before we’d leave, the iconic bridge of London. And we weren’t disappointed. The bridge in itself is a pure beauty, and the area that surrounds it also is! We spent the afternoon walking around, talking and laughing, taking our time to be amazed at absolutely everything that surrounded us. After a much needed coffee break at a Starbucks, we got back outside to a night view that will forever be in our minds. Looking at the other side of the river, where the thousand lights of one of the world’s most important financial district shine on us, we couldn’t help but realize how blessed we are. Not to travel the world and see its wonders, but to have memories with the ones we love that are a thousand times more beautiful than this unique night view. There lies the true treasure that we are blessed to discover a little more every time…

We finished the night at another pub, one we really enjoyed this time, where we met other people from all over the world. A last night all together that we forever will remember… Shining much brighter than the lights of any city.

We then hit the road for our next destination… As we are all going to spend a few days in Spain… We arrived in Barcelona after a very sleepy ferry ride, and witnessed on the way one of the most beautiful sunset we have ever seen… Yes, definitely, great things are ahead!

We arrived in Barcelona it was 3am. We brought all if our suitcases in our apartment, and decided to watch a movie, starting it halfway because that’s where we watched it last time, because it was a movie we have already watched… But hey, World War Z is always good, no matter when. By the time we unpacked everything, ate a little and watched the movie, it was 6am… We went to bed looking forward to what the next day would bring!

The place where we are staying in Barcelona is very lovely. Barcelona is as artistic as it gets, from it’s sidewalks, to its buildings and their architecture… Everywhere you lay your eyes is a special sight, without exception. We started the day with the noise of an orchestra that was performing outside the cathedral that is just around our house, followed by a parade of giant people, and an outdoor circus. Definitely, we would be more than satisfied by the artistic soul of this city! We had breakfast, and then headed outside, where we followed the steps of Gaudi, one of Alex’s favorite Spanish artist. We went to see La Sagrada Familia, La Pedreda, and La Casa Battló, just to name a few of his most important works… 😉

We finished the night at a local tapas restaurant, where we tried a few of the local specialities, seafood, to Ben and Moose’s displeasure… But it’s been, even for them, a very happy experience over all!

We came back home around midnight, planning the places we will see tomorrow, and watched Elysium… Another day tomorrow still waits to be defined… 🙂

– Stephanie

Second and Last Show in London!

Written by Your Favorite Enemies. Posted in More Than Noise & Make-Believes

Today was a late morning, but not so late considering what time we all went to bed yesterday. Our bodies sure were exhausted, but last night, jet lag had nothing to do with us staying awake so late. It was all about the vivid emotions we shared at the concert at The Water Rats, and that time we spent all together at the Starbucks after. They were still too real for us to shut our minds to them and just go to sleep.

We shared breakfast, that was meant to be healthy before Jeff added his special touch to it… And we were also privileged to get some very special Welsh cakes, a gift from our dear Sue.

We were supposed to have today a phone interview with Kerrang! Magazine at 2pm. Having receive no phone call at 2:30, we called our PR in the UK, who announced us that the guy who was supposed to interview us finally had a car accident, and that the interview would be postponed. After making sure things were ok with him, we laughed at the situation. Every time we are in Europe, something seem to go bad. From the phone interview, to the ceiling falling down at The Water Rats, to the venue in France that had to be changed last minute because the original one went bankrupt… Little events that we faced with a smile, with a renewed determination to make this a moment we will remember for a lifetime despite the circumstances. And this phone interview was just another moment like this… 🙂

We left the home around 4:30, and made it to the venue around 6pm, where the team for magazine 55 pages were waiting for an interview, in which Alex and Jeff talked about how happy they were to be back in London, a place that feels like home to the band, with this unique bond they share with people through music. They also discussed the tour in Australia and in Japan, a perfect representation of that bridge music can be, despite language and distance.

Right after this was time to get the gear in the venue, a place that’s relatively small, with a stage that’s even smaller. So tiny in fact I wondered how all the gear would fit in there. But the guys, when they saw that, looked at each other with a confused look and then all started laughing, as if they had all agreed that this was a pure punk venue. It’s with a smile in their face and burst of laughter that they brought everything on the stage, at times puzzled as to where things should go. It’s when they were setting up that we learned that the sound man that was for the night couldn’t make it, forcing Matt to do the sound for the 2 other bands playing. Yes, definitely, tonight would be a very punk rock night, true essence of DIY… 😉

And the show tonight, even if it was on a tiny stage, seemed to give off even more energy than it did yesterday. Even though they could hardly move on stage, they raised the tension that was in the room to a level that had never been reached before. The energy, the interaction on stage… You could see that the band in stage enjoyed themselves just as much as we did in the crowd! Once again, it was however a bit too short! 🙂

Tomorrow is a day off, aside from a few interviews… We will see what it has in stock for us 🙂

– Stephanie