TOUR REPORT: King Ly Chee Asian Tour – Sonic Fair Medan

So…where did I finish the last report…oh right – sitting at the airport in Singapore. While sitting there and updating the site everything was hunky dory thinking the tour was all off to a good start with a  sold out show in Singapore and no issues at the airport getting into Singapore. We already had issues at the Hong Kong airport which was a HUGE surprise to us. If you’ve been to Hong Kong you’ll know that not only is the HK airport one of the world’s best, it’s also one of the least troublesome in terms of customs and immigration. Out of all the airports on this tour we were worried about, we would NEVER have guessed in a million years that the airport in our own hometown was going to be a pain in the ass. First thing – we brought a lot of merch on this tour (which was a huge mistake by the way) and we were over our baggage allowance. Want to know by how much? 1000USD. Yes – that’s right. We were over our excess baggage by 1000USD which we had to pay to be able to get all our merch on to the plane from Hong Kong. Had we known that people weren’t going to buy that merch on this tour, we would have easily left half of that merch in Hong Kong and not wasted the 1K USD to bring that merch with us.

Tour off to a great start no? Then when we got to customs they wouldn’t allow me to bring the King Ly Chee skate decks on to the plane because the boards were 3 inches too long. You have to be fucking KIDDING me right?! We got into a huge argument with customs at the airport and finally somehow after kicking and screaming for a good 15 minutes they let us through. Tour REALLY off to a good start.

Anyway…after all that, the Singapore stop was so much fun and SOOOOOO well run by our man Jai of Reconstrux/Overthrown fame that we thought the worst of our troubles were behind us and we were ready to have a great rest of this tour.

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Enter immigration at Medan International Airport in Indonesia…

Our second stop was performing at the mega Sonic Fair music festival in Medan. We were CRAZY eager to get to this festival to perform in front of thousands of diehard heavy music supporters in Indonesia. There was only one flight into Medan leaving Singapore at 3 and arriving in Medan at 4. Sonic Fair had booked us to perform at 6pm so we were pretty anxious to get off the plane, get through immigration, and then through customs fast so we could get to the festival on time to get to our 6pm slot.

Flight even arrived in Medan 10 minutes early and we raced off the plane. Got to immigration and BOOM…trouble. They asked for proof of tickets leaving Indonesia after our Dumai date. Those tickets hadn’t been purchased yet so we had nothing to show immigration so they took us all into the customs office and were made to sit down. I had to contact the Dumai promoter to get him to buy those tickets immediately, take a photo of it and send them to us. To find out what happened next please speak to us directly.

Just know that it was hell in the immigration office and that the people of Sonic Fair managed to find a way to get us out of there…just know, that for around 30 minutes trapped in the office we thought that we would be thrown in jail or at least be deported from Indonesia on the next plane. That’s how scared we were and how clueless we were about what to do in that predicament…

Thank goodness for Sonic Fair…those guys sent a representative INTO the customs office to work their magic. About 45 minutes later we were outta there in a van headed to Sonic Fair. We made it to the huge venue 5 minutes before we had to get on stage. We got on stage and didn’t have time to soundcheck nor even do a line check so we had no idea what levels we had in the monitors. We were told to just get started…we got started and ALL the monitors had the craziest settings but we kept playing barreling through our songs and feeding off the INSANE energy from the crowd! Dude – YOU GUYS WERE NUTS AT SONIC FAIR! It was SUCH a good show and such a great way to release all our anger and frustration from what happened at Medan immigration. Backstage we got to hang out with amazing Indonesian hardcore bands Outright from Bandung, and local hardcore heroes Fingerprint! Man – it was so nice to see friendly happy faces after our horrible situation at customs. We also bumped into the promoter for the second Medan show Dolly at Sonic Fair. All the staff at Sonic Fair were so polite and helpful and definitely made us quickly forget the bullshit at the airport. 

Besides playing Sonic Fair one of my all time favorite things was watching how the whole festival would shut down at each call to prayer! As a Muslim, but also as just living breathing spiritual human being, it is so cool to see so much respect shown to a religion like this. I mean an entire festival STOPS during prayer time so that attendees can off to a makeshift mosque on the festival grounds to pray! Awesome…

Ivan setting up drums at Sonic Fair Medan.  

While setting up I was checking out the grounds before thousands of kids were going to crawl out of nowhere to check us out!  

Hanging backstage with the Fingerprint crew…  

Hanging backstage with the Outright crew! The last time we saw these guys was when we played together in Johor Bahru, Malaysia in 2012! Time flies! Still cool as hell 🙂  

Some live pics from Sonic Fair found online.    

  
 Hanging with my boy Yagi of Martyr fame! You won’t know how much this guy saved our life the next night after our second Medan show. I love this guy with all my heart! You the man bro!  
After the show we headed back to the hotel to kinda relax from our ordeal earlier. The hotel that Sonic Fair put us in was spectacular…and around the corner from some Indonesian street food joint that was perfect – Pagaruyung. We got cleaned up, changed some money and headed out into the night enjoying Indonesia…just 5 hours before this we thought for SURE we were going to be headed back to Hong Kong ending our Asian tour after just one show! hahahaha…

    

What an amazing turn of events…and what a great way to get some vindication by playing a KILLER set at Sonic Fair.

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