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What happened on Trivium's intimate European tour?

Last month, Trivium headed out on their most intimate tour in a decade.

Frontman Matt Heafy shares his diary of the backstage madness, the martial arts and, the, um, macaroons that went down...

March 17 - Part 1

Reflections of a to-be jet-setter. Somewhere between Orlando and Coral Springs, Florida

Matt Heafy: “One of my earliest recollections of lengthy travel is when my family and I were due to travel to South Florida to visit my grandparents. I was eight or nine years old. My parents said the drive would be three to four hours, and I remember scheming to bring a portable TV and videogame system, toys, food, water... basically the prep that would be required on a multiple-day trip. Even back then, boredom was one of my biggest fears. Of course, I didn’t get any of this together and spent majority of the drive fidgeting.”

March 17 - Part 2

Flight rig. Somewhere between Orlando and Ratingen, Germany

“These days, I still find myself packed to the gills with travel items, but this time it’s necessities (in my eyes): laptop; headphones; hard drives of music, photos, movies/TV and recording sessions; first aid kit; toiletries; iPod; chargers; filter water bottle; neck pillow; lumbar pillow; full-sized pillow; hoodie; protein bars... My ‘flight rig’ is important: mouth mask, ear plugs, hoodie, eye mask and doctor-approved sleeping pills. When you travel around the world, you need to force yourself to sleep sometimes so you’re prepared to hit the ground running regardless of the time change. My biggest piece of advice for a long flight: as soon as you sit down, it is then the time zone of ‘where you are going’. Don’t think about the time you were just in. Adjust immediately.”

March 18

Truck stops and bed and breakfasts. Between Frankfurt and Ratingen, Germany

“For the last few years, we’ve been rehearsing at the All Your Band Needs company HQ; they are the fine folks behind all the staging we’ve been using for the last few album cycles. After a direct flight into Frankfurt, it’s a three-and- a-half hour drive to the tiny town of Ratingen. After a long flight, the first requirement is a real meal; in Germany, they have truck stops with pretty decent food. We hit the Marche for some röstis and other breakfasty items and our crew began on some giant Hefeweizens [beers]. We then set back on the road to our bed and breakfast in Ratingen where the crew spend the day building the gear, I hit some yoga in the room and we wait ’til ‘family dinner’.”

March 18

Ratinger Brauhaus. Ratingen, Germany

“It’s no secret that the Trivium crew and band are all food-obsessed. Our favourite thing to do on this Earth is to enjoy the local food and drinks of every country and culture we find ourselves in. I can’t count the number of (usually American) bands that I meet who are so closed-minded to trying anything cultural outside of their typical broiled chicken breast at ‘Crapplebee’s’ or less-than-dog-food- quality hamburger-product you find from so many American fast food chains. We, on the other hand, have seen the light; it requires a bit of research, but the results are incredible if you’re willing to open the door of trying what the world has to offer. Ratinger Brauhaus is our usual haunt when in pre-production. We had our full band, crew, and some of our friends from around town join our feast.”

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