European tour 2012 wrap-up

So it is over for now. I am back home again in my apartment in Stockholm and i must admit it feels fantastic. It has been a hell of a ride as always, and it is YOU, our dedicated Painheads that keeps me going.


We have a fantastic team that have been working together for a long time now, which makes the daily routines very smooth. Stage set is always built up correctly and in time, our instruments are always perfectly set up, we have our towels and drinks where we want it, picks on the mic stand, set-lists at the correct places we prefer and so on and so on. We can always rely on the team.


Macke ("Backline-Frasse") takes good care of my precious guitars (and wireless guitar systems) and makes sure they are always shiny with fresh strings, tuned for perfection. Macke has never worked with us without his hat at any show so far. I am starting to think it is stuck there on top of his head. Dee-doo, dee-doo!


Emanuel ("Junior") does the same for the drums, but also keeps all our wireless In-Ear systems tuned and programmed for each days environment, along with our backing track system. He is the youngest dude in the team, and i can make sure he gets to hear it very often… As a matter of fact, he could be our son…


Hede ("Lamp-Roffe" or "Kablage-Lars" depending on which day it is) is just the best light guy you can have, and i so want to see a Pain show some day, just to see and indulge what he is doing when he is giving a new dimension to the music with his visual creations. He is often way too loud, and have been teasing me for my big and/or ugly guitar cases for the last 5 years, but he sure knows what he's doing when it comes to the lighting design. Stick to that please!


I get to hear so often from people who comes up to me (or reads in reviews) and say that the sound was just amazing and that "we have never heard this good sound in this crappy venue before" and things like that. We get to hear that it is "so clean" and "powerful" and "you could hear everything" and so on. This is all down to Kimmo Ahola ("Finno Mustalainen"), the crazy Finnish dude who mixes 50/50 Whisky/Coke and can make almost any place sound good. I have no idea how he do it, but it is proven that he is really one of the very best! He is also working with Nightwish, which is a band that always sounds good live. Working with a real pro is always a privilege. He has this Finnish attitude and pretends he hates us all Swedes, but i think as a matter of fact he likes us, at least a little bit. 


So, overall i must say that i am happy to have such great team around me and that everyone works so well together to make every show, every night, to be as good as possible on a common goal. Most of the times they all go beyond that level, and i just wanna say that i love them all!


Some tour statistics:

21 Shows

22 Days

10 Countries

5 Flights

9000km on the road (approx)

2 Nightliners with 5 drivers

5 Bands

170 Personal Michael Bohlin-picks

0 alcohol for me!


It was not intentionally planned like this, but i went through this whole madness tour without drinking one single drop of alcohol, and i must say i am so god damn proud! I feel great and i had loads of fun even though i was sober all the way through. Is this the new way going forward? I don't know and that's not the point, but it was a great experience and i can honestly say: You don't need alcohol to have fun, just make sure to be amongst funny individuals! Or maybe i am getting old...

My pass and my computer, heavily used during the tour. Both essential items.
Live in Zlin. Photo: Nathanella /
Live in Zlin. Photo: Nathanella /
Live in Zlin. Photo: Nathanella /
Another "tour-memory collection", this one came from Océ in France

Bochum, Germany

Someone had a party in Stuttgart and didn't go to bed until 8am, so having a soundcheck at 3pm in Bochum wasn't an option… So no soundcheck in Bochum… He eventually came crawling out of the bus at 8:15pm, two hours before showtime. No further comments needed.


Me, Johan and David wanted to go to downtown as we were in the suburbs of Bochum. So we took a walk to the train station and really tried to buy a ticket - fail! It was impossible as the machine only accepted Electron cards, not the Visa and Master Card that we had. So we had to walk back to the venue again, no train for us. We were just strucked by the usual Pain-luck again.


But we had better luck with the catering - the woman in the Matrix venue really knows how to cook! All food was great and she even did her own Tiramisu (i just LOVE Tiramisu) and it was perfect!


The show in Bochum was fantastic, the Matrix venue was packed to the limit and the feeling was at top level. Painheads were really loud and i think one of the best during the whole tour, on the same level as Vienna!


This morning i crawl out of my bed at 10:30, went downstairs and found someone still having a party there, completely alone. Why would you do such thing? After extensive persuasion i managed to get him to bed. The soundcheck today is at risk for sure… The sound in the bus at this time in the morning is interesting - most people are coughing and making sound like they all have the flu… in a small place like this with 18 people the contamination is impossible to avoid i suppose.


Today we are in Tilburg to do the very last show on this tour. It is always with mixed feelings you are coming to and end of an era, as we are a great team together and share loads of fun. But most of us miss home more than anything right now, so that feeling kind of takes over. But one more show, just one, and it is always special to start and to end a tour. I know we have Painheads in the crowd tonight that have seen more than one show during this tour, like Carine who has been commenting here on my blog. I know Painheads who travels hundreds of kilometers to see us and are freezing outside the venue before we even had soundcheck. I know Painheads who spends most of their money traveling, flying and buying tickets to see several shows on a tour, or like Océ from France did: 5 shows on this tour… To all of you i just wanna say thanks for being so dedicated, you have my full and utmost respect (even though i still don't understand it, it doesn't really get any better the second or third time around)!


After the show tonight we will drive to Düsseldorf and tomorrow we will say goodbye to the tourbus and fly back home to Stockholm again.

Live in Vienna
Live in Vienna
Live in Warsaw
Live in Warsaw
Live in Warsaw
Live in Warsaw
Live in Saarbrücken. Photo: Jan Rief
Live in Saarbrücken. Photo: Jan Rief
Soundcheck in Stuttgart
Our buses parked outside the Matrix venue in Bochum
This is only funny if you're Swedish. It means "Beerservice" in Swedish. Hilarious.
Our Swedsish colleagues was in the same Venue as us just 12 days earlier
Last time we were in this venue in Bochum was in October 2007. I remember it well.
Caught in a big metal robot in Matrix wearing a 8thSin t-shirt. Yes, i am bored now.
Trying to buy tickets to the Bochum train - fail.
Pains backstage drinks have really improved lately. It has never been this mature :-)

Stuttgart, Germany

I am sorry that i got a bit carried away and lost tracking yesterday. I totally focused on the album release and forgot to make any report from the tour! But hey, it was a a big day for me!


In Stuttgart we had loads of friends joining us, especially from our record company Nuclear Blast, and from Metalmoments, but also our latest album and latest DVD cover designer! It was the first time he saw his creations on the stage design. I was so happy because i realized i was playing the same stage as Kim Wilde had played!!! :-)


The show went really great and we had no other choice than to do an extra song after the set - the Painheads in Stuttgart was awesome, thank you!


Both me and Peter are eating eucalyptus pills to ease the pain in our throats, as it feels a bit bad right now, thick and painful, typical flu-ish. Now it's very handy that we have the Ricola pills we got in the present bag from Sarah Ziegenhagen in Pratteln.


Tonight we are in Bochum to do show number 20 of 21. YES!!


(Today is my sisters birthday. Congratulations Lina!)

Live in Zlin. Photo: Martin Mayer
Live in Zlin. Photo: Martin Mayer
Hede doing the lights for us in Zlin. Photo: Martin Mayer
Live in Vienna. Photo: Sabine /
Live in Vienna. Photo: Sabine /
Live in Vienna. Photo: Sabine /
Hede is happy when he got three desks full of knobs to tweak! :-)
Upper floor in our tourbus -  just a long corridor with 18 beds
Soundcheck in Saarbrücken
A small "Jack Museum" in the venue in Stuttgart
Fancy parking in Stuttgart
Today is 21 years ago since Eric Carr died. I am sending out a thought to his family!

8thSin - Cosmogenesis

Today is a very big day for me and Johan as it is the official release day of the "Cosmogenesis" album with 8thSin! It has been a 6 year long journey that is now finally coming to an end. I feel very proud and happy that this day has finally come, and hope that you like the result as much as we do! For those of you who have no clue what i am talking about, 8thSin is a band that started about 12 years ago and released the first album in 2004, the second in 2005, and was supposed to release the third album in 2006. But both myself and Johan joined Pain and have been touring heavily ever since, and the production of the third album was put on hold. Now the album is finally ready and it feels like i can turn the page and leave that chapter behind me with pride. 8thSin was my creative side at its most, as i did all music and all recording and production. It is the total opposite to my work in Pain as in 8thSin i do almost everything, and in Pain i do almost nothing. Though it is a bit unusual that it takes 6 years to finish an album, i'd say it only made it better as it transformed during the years and ended up in a more mature way. Most of the tracks are actually recorded back in 2005-2006 but all mixed and edited in 2011-2012.


We also had loads of great guests who where kind enough to help us out on the album, this is the complete list of appearing guests (including my daughter!) except the band:


Joacim Thenander - the "Mobhead" remixes

Pontus Norgren - guitar solo on "Teonanacatl (flesh of the gods)"

PM Saari - guitar solo on "Walking in my shoes"

Anders Olsson - guitar solo on "Walking in my shoes"

Martin Boman - guitar solo on "Walking in my shoes"

Eric Rivers - guitar solo on "Walking in my shoes"

Magnus Lundkvist - additional backing vocals and guitar solo on "Walking in my shoes"

Joacim Cans - additional backing vocals on "Walking in my shoes"

Catherine Forsberg - additional backing vocals

Ira Keelyn - additional backing vocals and female words on "Presession of the equinoxe"

Alexandra Balogh - additional backing vocals

Kimmy Bohlin - co-lead vocals on "Safety exit"

Peter Tägtgren - co-lead vocals on "Black metal"

Joacim Lundberg - co-lead vocals on "Walking in my shoes"


Complete tracklist:

01. Teonanacatl (flesh of the gods)

02. Perfectly wrong

03. Precession of the equinoxes

04. ID Zero

05. Safety-exit

06. Plumed serpent rise

07. Ekpyrosis

08. Cosmogenesis

09. The eight sins, part III


Bonus tracks

10. Walking in my shoes

11. Black metal

12. Irreligious - Mobhead 12" Mix (unreleased bonus from "Angelseed & Demonmilk")

13. A sleepover at the feeling of death - Mobhead 12" Mix (unreleased bonus from "Angelseed & Demonmilk")

14. Irreligious - Rectifier Club mix 135 (unreleased bonus from "Angelseed & Demonmilk")

15. The 11th commandment (unreleased track from "Sinners Inc")


"Cosmogenesis" is released on Soulseller Records, and will also be released in the US in February 2013.

8thSin - Cosmogenesis
Release November 23rd in Europe
February 2013 in the US

Hamburg, Germany

I had a look in my calendar and realized there's so many things you miss out on when you are traveling a lot like i do. And that's not only with Pain, but in general as i also travel a lot in my regular work. I wasn't home on fathers day, i will not be home when i release my own album, i will not be home on my daughters birthday in January and i will not be home on my own birthday in February. It's not the end of the world to miss things like that but it can mean different things to different individuals, and it made me think: am i traveling too much? 


Anyway, Hamburg show was great and we all had great fun fooling around with each other! I think the feeling that we are only a few shows away from coming back home is highly present with all of us now. I saw several familiar faces in the audience again and i have always liked the Markthalle stage. I don't know why but i think it has a cool look with the half-moon style lighting rig. Hamburg is also the place where Peter has made the silly mistake of referring to a different city when talking to the audience between songs, and he has done that twice here! Hamburg must be cursed, hehe. So this time our crew wanted to be sure he didn't say anything stupid and made several big notes that they taped on the floor right where he is standing, that said "Hamburg"…. 


I believe Johan is feeling better now, so now it might be my turn soon to get weak. When i woke up this morning i felt this familiar pain in my throat that i had felt so many times before, which is normally the first sign of a cold coming creeping up on you. Let's see if i can stay away from it.


Tonight we are in Saarbrücken, a place we haven't played since 2007.

Live in Paris
Painheads in Munich. Photo: Eva Bubek-Louis, Metal Hammer
Live in Warsaw. Photo: Rock Axxess
Live in Warsaw. Photo: Rock Axxess
The grey view from my backstage window in Hamburg. Our tourbuses and the railway
David suddenly freaked out and wanted to be a guitar player on soundcheck...
Peter's signs on the stage floor to remember what city we were in :-)
Kimmo is planning his next drink: what can you do with "Whisky" and Vodka?
Got this picture from Sarah Ziegenhagen with her memories from the show in Pratteln

Leipzig, Germany

We arrived in Hellraiser venue in Leipzig around 10am and i went out of the bus to get some air. Shit, it was freeeeeezing!!! And when they let us inside the venue it was exactly the same temperature as outside, in the catering, backstage, toilets, showers, everywhere! Welcome to another day in paradise.

We didn't soundcheck today either as "someone" didn't wake up until 6pm! No names, but this is the same "someone" that caused the "no soundcheck" yesterday as well. If we wouldn't have the In-Ear systems and digital console, this would not have been possible. Anyway, it was a long and cold day and it looked funny when people wear jackets, gloves and hats at dinner…

I think this was the third time i played this venue, at least. I remember we had a very good show here last year and this time was no exception. But i don't think we ever got this many people in this particular venue before! But today we have to do soundcheck. At least i hope we do. Well, i'm gonna soundcheck today, even if i have to do it alone!

Tonight we are in Hamburg, tomorrow in Saarbrücken, Friday in Stuttgart, Saturday in Bochum and Sunday in Tilburg. Then the tour is over and we go back home to Sweden to lick our wounds on Monday. Friday will be a big day for me.
Live in Pratteln. Photo: Serenity
Live in Vienna. Photo: Caroline Traitler
What's left of the poor lamps in our bus... they had a rough life in the end
"Glenn Nilsson Single Malt Something" (according to Kimmo Ahola anyway...)
My bunk in the bus, actually a bit like sleeping in a coffin, but more noisy! :-)

Berlin, Germany

We arrived in Berlin a bit too early so after parking up the buses and trailers we had to wait for a while until they would let us in to the venue. I saw a few Swedish trailers in the same parking outside the venue and was told it was The Hives that was in town at the same time as us. Anyway, right before 11am we were let inside anyway and could have breakfast and showers. Now if you remember what i wrote yesterday about someone had smashed every lamp in a hard party in the bus when i woke up, the very same person didn't wake up until 4:30pm so we actually didn't do any soundcheck in Berlin. It was too late as we are 5 bands and have a schedule we have to stick to, like doors that opens at 6pm. This is just how it is sometimes with this band… (Reminder to self: stop trying to follow the schedules, even if we are in Germany)


The show was good and we had great fun on stage. I had a great laugh about the guy who was sitting by the stage and switched the automatic fuse switch every 2-3 mins. Apparently something was wrong with the electrics and this was the solution for the evening, hehe. Johan was still not well, but i'd say he was much better than the day before anyway. After the show it didn't take long before our entire dressing room was filled with various unknown random people (to me anyway) which i felt a bit disrespectful when you haven't even got dressed yet! But anyway, i am sure they didn't invite themselves there but someone told them to come in, so i couldn't really blame them. Instead i got dressed and packed up my things and left. Johan joined me. I really appreciate when we have some time alone to calm down after a show, change clothes etc, but sometimes it doesn't go like that. This was just one of those nights.


Me and Johan went to the bus and straight to bed instead, and heard after short while how the whole party including all those people moved in to the bus to continue the party all night long (as we were not leaving early this night, with such short drive to the next city). It doesn't bother me as i sleep like a rock anyway.


Tonight we are in Leipzig. 15 down, 6 to go, hey ho.


Live in Pratteln. Photo: Serenity
Live in Pratteln. Photo: Serenity
Live in Pratteln. Photo: Serenity
My In-Ears ready to go before the show...
...together with the Sennheiser wireless receiver beltpack i have in my back pocket
More Swedes were at the same venue as us this day, i was told it was The Hives

Warsaw, Poland

It was a long drive again from Zlin to Warsaw so we didn't arrive until around lunchtime. Then usual routines applied as every day: find our dressing room, unpack the bag in dressing room, find a shower and use it,  do some work after finding a working network, soundcheck, dinner, go back to the bus and work and read for a while then sleep until 55 mins before the show, go back in and start to dress up in stage clothes, put on In-Ear system and make up, get on stage and rock.

I remember this place, i think it was 2008 when we were here last time. That show was good, but this one was really great! I don't know if we had more Painheads now or if they were just louder, but it was better anyway!


Unfortunately, just when Peter was declared okay again after being sick, it's Johan's turn. He was really off yesterday and got my last two Nyquills before he went asleep. He was in a pretty bad shape so let's hope he recovers soon. I was ill on the last European tour we did about a year ago and i know it really sucks! This time i have managed to stay healthy all the way through so far.


When i came downstairs in the bus this morning to have breakfast and start working, i found all remaining table lamps were smashed. I normally sleep like a stone, but i remember hearing that it was a hell of a party last night so this was probably the result…


Today we are back in Germany again, and this is where we're gonna spend the next six days and six shows before ending up in Netherlands on Sunday. Today is exactly one week left until i am back home in Stockholm again. That's tempting to think about.

Live in Vienna. Photo: Caroline Traitler
Live in Vienna. Photo: Caroline Traitler
Live in Vienna. Photo: Caroline Traitler
Live in Vienna. Photo: Caroline Traitler
The entrance of Club Progresja in Warsaw
Our backstage/dressing room in Warsaw - yepp, this is as glamouros as it gets!
Seems like my friends have been here as well :-)

Zlin, Czech Republic

This was the third time we were in Zlin in 1,5 years now, and this is the place where we filmed most part of the new DVD "We come on peace". Me and Johan took a walk to the city centre of Zlin, where most stores where closed and the main square was empty and quiet. Saturday seems to be a day where most places are closed in this country. But we found a shopping mall that was open anyway and i bought the Thunderbolt/Ethernet adapter to my Mac that i had been looking for.

After dinner we had a signing session of the new DVD at Masters Of Rock Cafe with loads of people. Then i went to the bus to have some sleep again (as i have been doing almost every day so far) until showtime. It was only a few tickets from being a sold out show which meant at totally packed Masters of Rock Cafe this night. The show went fine but it was so hot we almost fainted, all of us! Peter had to take off his straightjacket which has never happened before and the stage floor was all wet from us running around dripping of sweat. After the show we all agreed this was the worst (hottest) show any of us have ever done. Instruments, In-Ear receivers and other stuff where all soaking wet, but functioned flawless all through the show.

We also contributed with some souvenirs to the manager of Masters of Rock Cafe to be put on the wall among all other stuff there. It contained a signed tour shirt, a signed drumhead, personal guitar picks and drumsticks. It will all be put in a nice frame and seen on the wall there in the future. Thank you all Czech Painheads for giving us such overwhelming treatment and great show, this is why we love to come back to your country over and over again!

Next stop tonight: Warsaw, Poland
13 down 8 to go

DVD on sale in Zlin
At the main square in Zlin
Another ABBA show again... they seem to be everywhere
Dinner in Masters of Rock Cafe
Signing session of the new DVD in Masters of Rock Cafe
The shopping mall next to the venue
Our buses parked outside the Venue/shopping mall
Backstage personal fruit

Vienna, Austria

When we arrived in Vienna and the venue "Arena" i got the first REAL breakfast in the whole tour. Jipeeee!!! Of course it happens in Austria! :-)

And it didn't stop there, after soundcheck David, me and Johan went to the Gasometer to take the subway downtown. We went off at Stephansplatz and were heading for the famous Figlmüller restaurant to get a real Wienerschnitzel, but it was fully booked. So we sneaked in at the restaurant next door, "Gutenberg", and had wonderful Wienerschnitzels! I was so happy.


I also met Caroline Traitler again, one of my favorite photographers. She had brought her camera and shot the show, so now i only have to want until she sends me the pics from the show! It'll probably only take a few months… Speaking about the show, this was the best show on the tour so far - thanks Vienna and all Austrians! I am so proud of you all! Peter also announced my Austrian heritage on stage (but only said that my grandparents were from Austria, and forgot my father was actually born here as well!) and we actually did an extra encore song for the very first time on this tour. That speaks for itself, doesn't it?


After the show Johan was locked into the toilet with a "door-block" outside. He wasn't happy at all.


What a perfect day! Great breakfast, perfect dinner, beautiful city, great audience, great show. AUSTRIA. Period.

Just arrived in Vienna, parked by the Arena venue
The first real breakfast smiled at me in Vienna. Brekfastpoints: 7
Austrians really know how to do it right!
Peter making breakfast with eggs, sausage and bacon! Vienna makes me happy!
Johan and David In the subway, going towards Vienna downtown
Johan and David In the subway
In central Vienna we found loads of horses right on the street!
I found this ABBA-shop and as a Swede it was quite amusing to see
We never got in to Figlmüller as it was fully booked :-(
But in Restaurant Gutenberg i got my big Wienerschnitzel anyway, finally! :-)
Peter outside the toilet where Johan was locked-in by a door-block...

Bologna, Italy + "We come in peace"

1 degree in Frankfurt and now 12 degrees in Bologna. It changes quickly when you are doing the crazy touring all over Europe. We are driving about 500km-900km per day sometimes so we even feel the climate differencies!  Anyway, located in the middle of nowhere, outside Bologna in a building that looks like a hangar, we finally kicked off our show at 23:15. The Italian Painheads were going crazy and i must say it was one of the best shows on this tour, thank you!

As you probably know already, the new Pain DVD "We come in peace" is soon to be released, it is actually today! We have a few boxes in our merchandise shop on this tour (since Frankfurt), but only in limited quantity. The DVD is a crazy mix of everything related to the world of Pain. It is two full shows, one smaller club show in Stockholm (the last show of the "You only live twice tour" in 2011) and one big festival show (from "Masters of Rock") in Czech Republic 2012. But on top of this, we have also stuffed the DVD with videoclips from touring with this band; backstage, tourbuses, hotels and so on, all private content collected from all of us involved. But also loads of private tour pictures. I think it's fun and laughed my ass off when i saw it, and unfortunately this is a documentary of how it is, totally uncensored. Take it or leave it :-)

Today we are in Vienna Austria. As i am 1/2 Austrian it is always a bit special to me to perform here, in beautiful Osterreich! It would be even more cool to play in Krems where my father was born.


Frankfurt, Germany

Up until the show in Paris i was in good condition and felt like this was like a walk in the park. But at the show in Paris something in my neck snapped and since then it hurts like hell. Maybe i was pushing it a bit too hard, i don't know, but this makes it a bit difficult for me to give 100%. I felt it yesterday at the show in Frankfurt, the pain is pushing me back a bit from the kind of performance i want to do and it pisses me off. Painheads in Frankfurt was great anyway, even though i wasn't! Thank you!


While i am writing this i am staring out the tourbus window, amazed how beautiful the swiss alps are! I feel so small when i look up those massive mountains covered with snow at the top! We're going in and out of mountain tunnels as we cruise on the highway to Italy, and every time we come out on the other side a new fantastic view opens up. I feel like i am part of a postcard picture. The true power of nature!


Today we are in Bologna Italy and will do show number 11 of 21 of this tour, which means we are now about half way through this madness. To be honest with you, i miss home now. I am really looking forward to come back home to my family and beloved ones again, as being on the road can be tough sometimes.

Swiss alps seen through my bus window!
The entrance to the venue Batschkapp in Frankfurt
Nice dessert in Frankfurt, very similar to Swedish "Mums-Mums" :-)
Live in Antwerp, crazy pose... Photo: Carine Ooms
Live in Geiselwind, not sure what Johan is doing though... Photo: Tiffany Edighoffer
Live in Geiselwind. Photo: Tiffany Edighoffer
Live in Geiselwind. Photo: Tiffany Edighoffer

Paris, France

Trabendo is next to Le Zenith where we did two shows in 2009 with Nightwish, and also recorded the "Monkey business" video. It is a very small place, and we also realized that both Deep Purple and our Swedish friends Europe played at the very same day. Deep Purple at Le Zenith next door, and Europe only a few kilometers away. Too much music going on at the same time. But the good part is that our previous backline-technician Jens is now working with Europe, so we had the chance to meet him and chat about good old tour-memories… He actually came to Trabendo right before our soundcheck and had a beer.


I sat alone in the shared dressing room backstage when a woman came in and said "hi, i am the belly dancer for tonight". For a very short moment i thought i was going mad. Did i really order a belly dancer? No, i am very sure i didn't! She probably saw the emptiness in my face and realized i was confused, so she continued swiftly "i will be on stage, with Moonspell". It all felt way much better again. She was apparently ordered by Moonspell for the show in Paris and i was not going mad. Phew!


We all went to get some dinner and walked along the street next to the venue trying to find something that fit us all. In and out at different restaurants and ended up in Mc Donald's as usual, thinking that "you know what to expect" when you get there. NOT! I skipped every crazy local French menu like Mc Baguette (of course…) but sticked to the stuff i am used to, like QP. Took my first bite and… NOT! Dijon mustard doesn't work that well in a QP if you ask me. This is only because i am not used to it of course, but in my world, this is wrong. Also, we passed by a restaurant that served "Music Lunch". What's that? Can you order a 4 bar menu including drum solo and intro, topped with a E flat dessert covered in ritardando? I'll probably never understand.


The show in Paris was one of the best so far, and i am teased to say "i told you so". I know we can always rely on our French Painheads and this show was no exception! Thank you all!!! And the fan i told you about who saw all four shows in UK was now also in front row in Paris. She told me she flew to Paris just to see our show and had a long ride back with train today. As an artist you cannot really do anything else that respect that kind of behavior, can you? I don't understand it (as i would never fly anywhere to see Pain…) but i respect it.


Reunited again: Jens, Hede, Emauel, Macke, Johan outside the venue in Paris
Here you can eat Music Lunch!
Only in France - Mc Baguette! :-)
Peters leg after falling off the bed in the van in UK last week, now starts to look bad!
I can use my belowed red guitar again! It turned out i had just been a bit to rough to it...
Apparently the belly dancer was with Moonspell and just shared our dressing room


Pratteln, Switzerland

I woke up a few times that night, especially when David came running in the corridor in the bus at 5am yelling "-we have war-painted Hede!, hello? can you hear me? we have war-painted Hede!". I told him to shut the fuck up as many of us were asleep in our beds. It was just another party-night in the bus and Hede apparently fell asleep and got his face painted black, again. Later that day David came in to the dressing room and said: "-we painted Peters face last night, completely black!". I said "-but you said it was Hede, and i have seen Hede today, and i am very sure it was his face you painted", David: "oh, was it Hede we painted?".

I am speechless. Oh! Now i remember what band i'm in, i almost forgot there for a second!


Anyway, so we were in Switzerland yesterday. We entered this beautiful country around noon after being stuck at the border for a while. I love the Swiss mountain views and feel a bit privileged to watch this through the bus window. After soundcheck when i went out to the bus to leave a few things, i met two fans outside the venue next to our bus that had brought us a bag of presents. It contained AC/DC beers, wine, chocolate and other stuff (see picture below). That was a very nice thing to do if you ask me - and this bag is now stowed in the bus and i am sure it will be used soon.


The show was good, and i could use my lovely red guitar again. About in the middle of the set we had a birthday surprise for Johan on stage, we all sang "happy birthday" to him (including the audience) and he got presents that our crew had sneaked out to get a few hours earlier. He got big "dick-balooons" around his neck (from the "sex-supermarket" next door) and Swedish Glögg and other nice things you can buy at IKEA in Pratteln, hahaha. Hopefully he will remember this birthday.


Tonight we are in Paris. This is a place we all look forward to play every tour, as Pain seem to have a very special vibe here. I don't know why, but some of the best moments have been in Paris. Let's see how it goes tonight, but i have high hopes in all our loyal French Painheads! I have heard that that fans who saw every show in UK is now also ready in front row tonight in France, see 'ya!


8 down, 13 to go.

The bag of presents
Birthday celebrations for Johan on stage in Pratteln!
Birthday celebrations for Johan on stage in Pratteln! Photo: Jonny Gauer
Magnum had been here before us. Great band!
Hede programming lights before the show in Munich
All Sennheiser In-Ear systems ready to go before the show in Munich

Antwerp, Belgium

Today is Johans birthday. Of course we will celebrate him in our way, but it would also be cool if all of you who will show up at the show tonight in Pratteln could help us to celebrate? Bring your signs and make sure he recognizes your celebrations. He is worth a great celebration as we seem to be on the road every time he has his birthday, and he is too shy to tell anyone… I have known Johan for almost 12 years now and i love him like a brother. This one is for him: Congratulations!
The show in Antwerp went great, and Trix was as good as i remembered it! Very good venue, stage and service. Again i saw several familiar faces in front row, which always makes me happy to see that Painheads tend to come back for more! :-)
Right now i am in backstage room of the venue in Pratteln, Switzerland. See 'ya tonight! (and bring your celebration stuff for Johan!)
After the show in Geiselwind. Photo: Tiffany Edighoffer
Live in Geiselwind. Photo: Tiffany Edighoffer
Breakfast in the tourbus - the most important meal of the day to keep me nice :-)
Paus/break somewhere at Autobahn in Gemrnay to swich drivers
My two babies (and Peters in the middle) waiting to get going in Munich
I found wild rabbits in Antwerpen

Munich, Germany

Yesterday we were in the city of BMW. Back in 2007 when we played here i went to the BMW museum, which was a great experience! I just love that brand. When we played here last year André jumped down from the balustrade to the audience after we had finished our show... Fortunately we played the bigger venue this time, with no such balustrade available, hehe. The show went great and it seems like the Munich painheads are always nice to us! I saw several familiar faces in first row, that i have seen many times before.

But my new Ferrari red Jackson RRX wasn't working properly. So i had to do the whole show with my backup guitar, the Transparent Black Jackson RRX. That's no problem as they are both the same model and they are both fantastic guitars, i just love the looks of the red one and really like to use it! (after all, it is unique with this special color and my name on the headstock!) I don't know what's wrong with it as i have been using it on every show so far - maybe i have been to rough to it and it needed a vacation? Hehe… anyway, on line-check before the show our guitar-tech found out that it didn't sound as it should so to be sure i got the backup. Hopefully he can make it work until the show tonight!

Yesterday was supposed to be my grandmother Anna-Greta Bohlins birthday, she would've turned 89, but she died a few months ago. May she rest in peace. Another big day is today: Fathers day. I am very sad that i cannot be home with my daughters this day! :-(

Not that i really care about the celebration itself, but it is always a time of joy when i get together with my daughters. Kimmy and Jennifer: let's do this when i get back home again! I did celebrate my father this morning though, by the phone.


We arrived in a sunny and beautiful Antwerpen around noon, me and Johan took a walk in the suburbs around the Trix arena. I remember this place was a very good show a year ago, so i have high hopes for tonight!

Live in London. Photo by Kalliope Tsouroupidou
Live in London. Photo by Kalliope Tsouroupidou
Live in London. Photo by Kalliope Tsouroupidou
Live in Manchester. Photo: Carter Photography
Live in Birmingham. Photo: Sean Larkin
Live in Birmingham. Photo: Sean Larkin

Geiselwind, Germany (and a long travel day!)

After flying from Glasgow to London, and continue from London to Düsseldorf on thursday, we finally found ourselves in Düsseldorf airport ready to jump on our tour bus. Johan was already there waiting for us and we also met Moonspell there. But something must go wrong in the world of Pain, and so it did of course. The tour bus that was supposed to meet us where 2 hours delayed (i didn't think they had such things as delays in Germany!), so Peter went to the nearest shop and bought beer and booze. Bad idea. During these two hours of waiting, the gang went loud and stupid. When the bus finally arrived and we loaded all our things, we could finally get going. It took less than two hours of party in the bus before the first one threw up in a trash can… Hey ho, the tour is now officially announced as open!


When i woke up the next morning (Friday) i went downstairs in the bus and found out that the door was broken and open… do i have to tell you that it was cold? The toilet was full and one of the lamps were smashed. Good morning sunshine, the earth says hello.


We are five bands traveling on this "Into darkness" tour, in two nightliner buses, one black and one blue. In our bus (which is the black one) we are Pain and Moonspell. We had 18 beds in each bus, and i am sure i don't have to tell you we have very limited space :-)


Last night was the first show of this tour, in Geiselwind Germany. That was my first time in Geiselwind. The show went fine even though we had some technical problems, as you always end up having on the first show of the tour. For the first 3-4 songs i had a very strange sound in my guitar, which went good when i got my spare guitar instead. Seems like the batteries in my active EMG system was out, causing the terrible sound. Also, the monitor mix in my In-Ear system was nowhere near what we had in soundcheck, strangely enough. Well, i am sure tonight will be better. While i am writing this it is Saturday morning and we have arrived in Backstage, Munich.


David makes an impression before leaving Glasgow airport
The view of a completely knocked out crew: Macke, Emanuel, Kimmo, Hede
Leaving Düsseldorf airport with our bus
...after 1,5 hour in the bus: Peter talking to the garbage
...after 2 hours in the bus: Peter signs off
The Beers in Geiselwind backstage: AC/DC
Me in front of the huge guitar in Music Hall, Geiselwind
Music Hall, Geiselwind
Our Nightliners lined up outside the venue in Geiselwind

Glasgow, UK

The 5 hour ride in a van between Birmingham and Glasgow wasn't the funniest thing i've done in my life, but i must admit the surrounding landscapes that i saw through the window was very beautiful. It is funny to see how sheeps are standing in the steep terrain looking like they were born with two long legs and two short… 

Arriving in a rainy Glasgow, and entered a freezing cold backstage room with no heat and no toilet. Of course! Everything else has been freezing during this tour so i didn't expect anything less! I have been wining all week about everything being cold, but this morning the hotel room had only boiling hot water and no cold water, so that was also impossible to use... Never good enough, huh?
The show went all good, and we had a good time. Yesterday we met two fans outside the Birmingham venue that we have seen in the front row during all the UK shows, and they wanted us to play "I'm going in" on the last show (as they were going here as well), so we did! We actually opened up with this song tonight, and they were in the front row again, looking happy :-)
Last night was the last show on this third tour with Nightwish. Coming back to UK this time was much better than i expected, and i am already looking forward to come back here in February for our headline tour! Today is a travel day (and the only "off day" on the whole tour) and we have to fly to London and then to Düsseldorf where our nightliner tourbus will meet us. Then we will drive to the first venue in Geiselwind where we will kick off the "Into darkness" tour on friday.
Live in London
Live in London
Live in Manchester
Emanuel sleeping in the van
Landscapes of Scottland seen through the window of our van
André happy after a meal on our way to Glasgow
"Fresh air" intake :-)
Light check in O2 Academy Glasgow
The UK Tour with Nightwish is now over, it has been great!

Birmingham, UK

Rob didn't show up! Hehe... but it was okay anyway and i have my chest full of British Heavy Metal air now, hehe. Great show, great audience. We changed a few songs in the setlist to adapt to Peters throat condition, which was a good decision. That's also very inspiring for the rest of us when we don't do the same setlist every day. Today and yesterday we did "Dark fields of Pain" which is a very old song that we haven't played that much lately.
After a short ride to another cold hotel with open windows in November, i went to sleep. Right now i am sitting in my hotel bed listening to Peters snoring while i'm writing this, and we will soon have a nice 6 hour ride up to Glasgow today. Tonight we wil do the last show and ending this UK tour with Nightwish before we head for the rest of Europe. This will be my first trip to Scotland and i am so looking forward to it! I wish i had a few days extra there so i could go and visit the place of my dreams: Islay! Well, i have never been this close anyway, next time i come back here i wanna go to Islay and visit all the famous eight places: Bowmore, Lagavulin, Laphroaig, Ardberg, Bunnahabhain, Bruichladdich, Caol Ila, Kilchoman. Cheers!
Pain showfile on the Venue desk
Peter, David and Hede in our van, now also with a heating system...
Hede on his way to O2 Academy in Birmingham
Some new designs this year
Main and spare guitars ready to go in Birmingham
David got a bonus-box after the show and went really happy

London, UK

2 down 19 to go. It felt good coming back to the Brixton Academy in London again. I love this place, it's so beautiful and the acoustics is really something spectacular. Last time we were here was in 2009, this time also with Nightwish. This is actually the third tour we do with our Finnish friends so we know each others pretty well by now.
The show went well and i think the London audience was actually a bit louder than Manchester. But i can't tell for sure, the In-Ear system headphones are very tight and doesn't always tell the truth of screaming audience (in a good way). But i had a feeling this show was overall a bit more energic than the day before. Peters voice was also in a better shape. I also had a good friend in the audience but it was no time to meet afterwards as he had an early flight to catch today so he had to split. Next time, Ben!
Troy from Nightwish have always visited our dressing room showing one of his crazy magic tricks, and now it was time again. As usual, we were totally knocked off and upset we couldn't understand how he did it, so we threw him out of our dressing room, hehe... After the show we had a 1,5 hour drive in a van to get to our hotel. I told you yesterday about the cold hotel in Manchester, but this time it was the van that was cold. It was close to zero degrees and i was freezing my ass off in this van for 1,5 hour, under a blanket with jacket and scarf. Not to mention the guy (no names) who threw up in the van halfway to the hotel... What's wrong with this band? It is always something that fucks up! Anyway, when we left the hotel this morning again, the van was okay and we had heat again. It had been in for service during the morning. Thank god for that!
Tonight we are at classic ground - i should lay down and kiss Birmingham soil as this is the place were the best metal band in the world were born. JUDAS PRIEST! I can feel the vibes as i breath true British Heavy Metal air today. If i had the address, i would jump in a cab over to Robs place and invite myself for a cup of tea :-)
See 'ya tonight Birmingham! (Rob, please drop by tonight as well)
This seat belt sign is useless, as our van doesn't even have any...
Avid Venue Profile handled by Kimmo Ahola - the key to success!
My guitar sound: Avid Eleven Rack and Sennheiser wireless system
Our Sennheiser wireless In-Ear systems
Entrance of Brixton Academy, merchandise shop straight ahead
Lightcheck at Brixton Academy
Another trick by Troy - we threw him out of our dressing room! :-)
Right before soundcheck at Brixton Academy - watching the lights
Fans waiting outside backstage entrance at Brixton Academy

Manchester, UK

Went up 4:30am and went to bed around 01:00 am (UK time, which is 02:00 my regular time) which made this day a very long day. Got picked up by David and Andre at 06:00, went to the airport where we met the rest of the gang and made loads of re-packing arrangements before checkin. We always have way too much stuff and more than we are allowed to so we have to spread out the weight a bit. Anyway, we flew to Oslo, and then finally to Manchester. Got picked up by a van and got to the O2 Apollo arena. After some catering lunch i met with all our old friends in Nightwish who just arrived as well. Long time no see, but this is also Pains third tour with Nightwish so we know each others pretty well by now. As always at the first show in a tour, all technical preparations takes a lot extra time and time schedule is tight. This time we expanded our Sennheiser wireless setup with 4 channels of In-Ear systems as well, which saved us completely! It makes life so much easier and the sound is just amazing, i love to use in-ear systems!

We entered the stage exatly on time, in front of a almost sold out Apollo arena. Show went well, audience treated us well, and the only obstacle was Peter who almost lost his voice during the show and sounded a bit bad. Hopefully this will be better tonight in London. After the show, i saw a few songs of Nightwish, then hang around backstage until we left for our hotel. When me and Peter entered our room, the window was open so we had the same room temperature outside as inside! Do i have to mention it was cold? Probably around 2 degrees only. So i slept in jeans, double sweaters, scarf, blankets, and still was cold as ice. When i woke up this morning i felt sick and my throat hurts. Perfect way to start a day, especially when i know i need to be singing in stage in London tonight...!
While i am writing this i am sitting in the hotel lobby, just had english breakfast, waiting for our van to pick us up and drive to London. I hope to see a full house at O2 Academy Brixton tonight, and hopefully a few of my UK friends will show up (Ben and Rich, see 'ya tonight!)
Just arrived in Manchester airport
Soundcheck with our new stageset and my new Jackson RRX
Lightcheck with our new stageset! Looking good!
Breakfastpoints: 6 (4 without the Weetabix)

UK here we come!

Off we go, UK here we come! Tomorrow morning at 6am David will pick me up and we will be heading out to the airport to fly to Oslo and then continue to Manchester where we have our first show tomorrow night together with Nightwish. After four shows in UK we start the "Into darkness" tour the next day. Here we come!
Live in Helsinki a few weeks ago. Photo: Marine Crepiat
I just love my new Ferrari red Jackson Rhoads RRX!
Nicolas Pastor collection - i just had to share this picture that i got from Nicolas Pastor. It's four signed pictures, a ticket and my signature pick all in a nice frame. We met him when we were in Buenos Aires earlier this year and he miade this memory in a frame. Thanks for sharing Nicolas! Please share your stories as well.

RSS 2.0