TV Freaks, Bummer, Sam Coffey, Uranium Comeback, Black Tower, Club Saw, Ottawa, June 19th 2013
This is my second time going to Ottawa Explosion. Getting there was okay, but American Airlines really sucked. Not the flights, but the ground crew did not a good job. Not in Düsseldorf, not at my stop location Chicago, not in Ottawa. When I got to Düsseldorf, there was a long line at the counter, and it didn’t move at all. It took a long time to get to the check-in counter. Then the woman was unable to get me a boarding pass for the connecting flight. She tried, tried again, asked her coworker to the right, asked the coworker to the left, and at the end told me I had to pick it up in Chicago. Well, so we were already 10 minutes into my check-in at that point. Then she proceeded to ask some security questions. I know these are normal questions these days, everybody gets asked. But boy are they stupid. And that took even longer. No wonder the line barely moved. In the past I’ve seen airlines making this a second stop at the check-in process. But this requires additional personal on location. AA seemed understaffed.
So I had to hurry to get to the plane. Got some breakfast in between. Got on board without having to go through a second screening this time (unlike the last two or three? and the flight itself was okay. Nothing to complain here, even got a little sleep.
Chicago introduced itself with another long line that did not move quickly. Probably the second longest wait I ever had at immigration. Ironically when I got to the counter, my actual immigration took the least amount of time ever. The officer only asked me “You going to Canada? – Yup!” that was pretty much it.
Next step was getting my new boarding pass. When I went to a counter the woman was kinda irritated. “You going to Canada? Do you have a visa?” – I don’t need one, I just want my boarding pass! Yet another line at security. I thought a three hour stop would provide me with ample time, but by that I just went to the gate and it wasn’t long till we boarded. Again, the flight was no issue.
What a contrast immigration into Canada was! The line was barely 5 people in front of me, with like 4 counters open. I had to answer some more questions, but most were about train lines between Frankfurt, Cologne and Bonn. Then my checked bag failed to appear on the belt. Coincidentally, no airline representative appeared at the luggage counter. Somebody from the customs personal even gave me a form to fill out for the time being. It took AA a full 30 minutes to even staff the counter. She quickly located the bag in Chicago (no surprise here), promised a delivery within 25 hours, and I was good to go. Seriously, American Airlines sucked!
Joe was nice and picked me up at the airport, and straight to Club Saw we went. Walking there form the parking lot I heard music and thought “Wait, did the show start early? What kind of punk festival is this?” – turns out it was just sound check. But it didn’t take long for Black Tower to start. OWX had begun.
First night, five bands. Black Tower were good, with their weird mix of Erins pop punk vocals and black metal riffage. Uranium Comeback survive by not playing shows, Sam Coffey has too many guitars I think, Bummers didn’t really excite me, TV Freaks ruled and reminded me a lot of Dean Dirg, but musically and with their stage presence. Very good start!