posted on April 28, 2007 at 5:11 pm

thats right
arrived in the motherland
wheres rikki?
have met legendary church fans out the front
people from all over the world
dan from san diego
a guy from italy
tonites gig almost sold out
last nite was only about 50
the smallest crowd we ever played to since 1980
am i humbled now?
i think so
i do wanna give up
obviously we cant tour europe again
its too close to the wire
too near the bone
it dont work playing to 50 people
yes im grateful to the 50 there
it coulda been even worse
even so we had some dutch wally yelling out
“play yer hits…thats what we’re paying you for”
thanks pal
you hurt my feelings when i was already down
boo hoo
anyway i did my best
whatever thats worth
not much
i just read a message to anton alfred e newman backstage here
but i cant repeat in case my mothers reading
boom boom
so its nice down here in brighton
home to nicky cave n bob gillespie
neither of whom i presume will be coming tonite
i have been warned not to swim in seweragey sea
yeah…i guess i’ll give it a miss
im feeling lonely n scattered
people talk to me but i cant concentrate
my eyes wander
i m disinterested even in someone
telling me im the best thing since sliced bread
i gotta rethink this whole thing
i gotta quit while im a head
i gotta …
i gotta go
a big blogge 2 morrow i promise
if you thinking of seeing us in london
it really could be the last time
maybe the last time
i dont know
oh no…

70 Responses to “backstage in brighton”

  1. avatar
    Anonymous | 28 April 2007 at 5:42 pm #

    I haven’t seen you since 1982.
    Haven’t has the chance – you’ve never been near and I’ve never had the money to come to you.
    But at least others have had the opportunity.
    50 people…Jesus.
    It’s criminal – you’re as good as ever and should be rewarded for it with big gigs and full venues.
    I can understand the ‘what’s the fucking point’ despair.
    You’re far, far too good to not play live anymore – but does the end result outweigh the effort and expense of doing it?
    I dunno.
    I hope so.

  2. avatar
    rollins | 28 April 2007 at 5:46 pm #

    at least play big cities, man. Manchester, Birmingham, Sheffield, Leeds, Newcastle, Nottingham, Glasgow. All of these places woulda had more than 50 in the audience!

  3. avatar
    12str | 28 April 2007 at 6:02 pm #

    dear SK!
    i have a hard time understand this strange world sometimes…
    where is the freedom of choice…
    everything is put through this big corporate machine….you cant buy what they dont sell…
    everything in the name of mammon..they kill babies for a buck..theres hardly any room left for free spirits…
    i listen to the radio…what do i hear?…swedish idol…american idol…young gifted people selling their souls for a second in the spotlight….massproduced muzac poisoning peoples minds….a generation of corporatelead zombies following that greedy piper straight down the drain…
    thats why we need people like you guys…out on the frontier..never compromising…
    youre a light in the dark…
    dont let it get to you..

    take care man!


  4. avatar
    veleska1970 | 28 April 2007 at 6:03 pm #

    ONLY 50?!?!??!!!!! **shaking my head** steve, for the life of me i just don’t fucking understand. i just don’t. andyL hit it right on the head with his second comment from yesterday, i quote: “…i’m trying to tell you steve
    just how important you are to people who dig real art,crafted with care. something that comes from further inside than almost
    anyone else can reach….you play to, and for, an enlightened offshoot from mainstream humanity.

    and believe it, this is the truth. some very wise words and i don’t think anybody could have said this better. (thanks, andy!! you ARE fantastic.) but there should be more than just a paltry 50 who understand your sublime genius. i don’t know. maybe it could be that the church is on such a higher plane than most people can grasp, that only a few of us can comprehend it. kinda like being a member of MENSA or something. the enlightened ones, like andy says.

    and to the “dutch wally”~~he pisses me off. i’ve seen you guys four times since 1988, and never once have i been disappointed with the songs y’all chose to play, thinking “they should have played this or that”. i’m always happy to see you, and whatever you chose to put in your setlist to serenade me was fine by me. you’re not a bunch of performing monkeys, just up there for the whim of certain people like that dolt. if that’s what he wants, than he can go buy himself a monkey, dress him in paisley, and instead of an organ grinder, just have the monkey put in a whole bunch of church cd’s and play exactly what the wally wants to hear. AND pay the monkey to play the “hits”.

    what a serious asshole. and methinks that even if you had played what he wanted to hear (whatever THAT would have been), he still wouldn’t have been happy.

    sorry to lash out, steve, but that really and truly chapped my rear end. besides, doesn’t that idiot realize that you have so many songs to draw from, probably more than any band in existence, including old timers like the rolling stones and all, that you would be able to play a concert every day for 5 years straight and not ever play the same song twice??

    ok, i’m stepping off my soapbox now. i’m putting it away…..

    as always, lotza love…..

  5. avatar
    Fan d'Or in little village | 28 April 2007 at 6:05 pm #

    > obviously we cant tour europe again
    > it really could be the last time


    what the fuck do i need sliced bread for…

    50 people…are you sure there are living more than 50 people in Henge-bloody-lo?

  6. avatar
    van Doreen | 28 April 2007 at 6:08 pm #

    (the worst thing is you *played* all your hits…well, I’d give all the hits for one more Saturation and another Pure Chance…)

    I better start saving for the Aeroflot tickets to Avstraliya..

  7. avatar
    tikki tavvi | 28 April 2007 at 6:14 pm #

    the expense does
    yes it does
    arriving in a flurry
    hurry gust
    as per usual
    see you soon
    better be some room
    for the bass boom

  8. avatar
    zebob | 28 April 2007 at 6:18 pm #

    Besides The Church, I follow another band who are also criminally underappreciated, even in their own backyard.
    When they hit Boston (where the record label they own is based, this is where they started) on their tour in 2005, there were MAYBE a dozen people there. I was incensed. Outraged. Teeth were gnashed.
    But, in the end, what does it matter? The Church make phenomenal records. I’m currently enjoying “Uninvited” while I procrastinate from doing my real work. It’s a beautiful spring day here on the East Coast. The Red Sox have been beating the Yankees in our odd sport called baseball. Life is good.

  9. avatar
    EARTHFRIEND | 28 April 2007 at 6:38 pm #

    it is the last time!!!
    Ne iko

  10. avatar
    nickfiction | 28 April 2007 at 6:39 pm #

    oh dear , i really think you ARE quitting .

  11. avatar
    veleska1970 | 28 April 2007 at 6:42 pm #

    ugghh….my grammar is getting sooo bad. that should been “THEN he can go buy a monkey,” not “than”….

    my apologies to my second grade teacher. **blush**

  12. avatar
    eek | 28 April 2007 at 6:42 pm #

    Oh Steve, this post makes me so sad. It’s not really a surprise that some of the shows on this tour had slow ticket sales, but 50 people…. Ouch. That really hurts. Hell, it hurts me, I can’t even imagine how discouraging it is for all of you.

    I love to see your gigs, I really do. And I hate to think of a time when there won’t be any more of them. But when the time comes that touring is no longer possible for you — emotionally, financially, for any reason really — I’ll look back at the shows I did see with great pleasure, and I’ll look forward to the work you make. And it goes without saying (but I’m gonna say it anyway) that as long as you do tour in N. America I will make sure to see as many shows as possible and enjoy the hell out of them!

    I’m hoping these last two shows are very well attended and are utterly fantastic — both for you and for all the fans. You deserve it.

  13. avatar
    fantasticandy | 28 April 2007 at 6:43 pm #

    steve, if you had played more brit gigs it would have been far less punishing and far more rewarding in every way. c’mon be sensible,this is where people love ya, the good olde UK. or the US or canada, when did the kiwis last see you! there’s loads of places.
    youv’e been to countries where they don’t even know what rock n roll is!
    there’s 70 million pople here and you give ’em two gigs practicaly a stones throw from each other in the bottom end corner of the british isles!
    you’ve spent the entire tour in no-hope doss-holes. where’s the logic in that?
    ok, ’nuff said.
    for me monday is the event of the year, if you do knock touring on the head after this debacle, then it’ll be the event of the decade.
    all of you make the most of your day off tomorrow,talk to loved ones, take a stroll in the park or whatever helps you recharge a bit.
    iv’e got a busload of enthusiastic people who think you guys are sublime.
    see you monday,
    oh, i don’t crave any special attention at all, but i really do need that chair!
    loadza luv to you all,
    andy L.

  14. avatar
    Inge | 28 April 2007 at 6:47 pm #

    Hey listen, I was one of these 50 people last night. And let me tell you that the idiot Steve mentions was totally drunk and had no more brain left. Let me also tell you that about 25 of those 50 people were about to jump the moron. And that it was Steve himself who stopped us from tearing the bastard limb from limb.
    Having said that, yes, it was very sad to see so few people there, but come on, Hengelo? Hengelo was just a bad, ridiculous choice for this band to play. No, for any band. It’s hicks from the sticks down there. The rest of Holland calls people from that area: Tuckers (don’t know why historically) but Tuckers has come to mean… well… it does not have a very positive connotation, let’s put it like that. When I first read that Hengelo was added as a tour date, I thought: HENGELO???? Which nitwit has thought of that – this will be a disaster.
    It was not though, by the way, it was just very quiet. Having listened to conversations I would guess that 47 of those 50 came from the west and south of Holland, from Germany, from the US, from France, from, God knows where, but NOT from Hengelo.
    Don’t dump Europe for this reason, Steve, just don’t ever go near Tucker country again. Please come back! We need a Church tour every now and then.

  15. avatar
    cvodb | 28 April 2007 at 7:02 pm #

    I concur with Inge, Hengelo – no offence to people from Hengelo – is the arse end of nowhere. It’s a ‘city’, but it’s only a small square, a church and a couple of cafés. I’m glad I travelled up there from Amsterdam, looks like next time we might have to travel much further.

    That guy, the heckler… he hassled me before the show, he was off his head. Eejit.

  16. avatar
    Inge | 28 April 2007 at 7:10 pm #

    By the way, I uploaded 8 photos of the Amsterdam gig on Eclectica. If you’re curious, they’re up now.

  17. avatar
    CSTCoach | 28 April 2007 at 7:52 pm #

    last time??!!?? don’t talk nonsense, man!! Truly!

    its an understandably dissapointing turnout. and like fellow fiendss above i think it’s criminal, a disgusting and discouraging comment on (lack of) culture today, and it pisses me off that you guys are underappreciated.

    but do please come back to north america! you guys are appreciated. I know it doesn’t pay the bills to say this, but you’ve tapped into quality over quantity. How many appreciate a fine champagne, and how many brainless sods drink shitty mass produced beer? Its a testament to your work that discerning people appreciate it, and i think that audience of people with taste and brains will always be smaller. It seems to be a sad fact of genetics.

    its a tough slog man, but don’t pack it in. You guys are at the peak of your creative powers and have never produced better work.


  18. avatar
    mime | 28 April 2007 at 7:59 pm #

    Hell, what can i say. Last night was bizarre and something very special at the same time. I know, you obviously won’t agree with the last part. But who will ever have the opportunity to see you guys play for such a small audience again? And you really did try. (However for a few moments I thought you meant “let’s get it over with” when you said “He, let’s go on”.)

    Yesterday my wife and I drove to Hengelo, had a meal with her parents and put our son to bed. Twenty minutes later we arrived at the Metropool (by bike: you should have seen PK’s face when we unlocked them to go home after the show). The venue wasn’t that bad (no worse than Krefeld or Paradiso upstairs) but… only about 50 people (of whom 30 paid 12 euros for their ticket). Embarrassing.

    So it had to be a ‘short’ one. No Hounds of love and only one encore (including a very impressive Invisible) and you being pretty stoned (nice giggle you got that’s for sure). I don’t blame you for it, although you should have known the power of Dutch herbs. Even would have understood if you hadn’t played at all. Because no one likes to hear MWP say “Thanks for coming” on his way out.

    May Brighton and London erase this nightmare. But, please, return to Europe! You were great. Thanks.

  19. avatar
    stealthblue | 28 April 2007 at 9:08 pm #

    Hey Stevo,
    God…I really hope you guys just don’t ever tour again. I mean, I can see why you would think that at times, but it really would be a shame to never see you on the road sometime. Maybe a nice long break will do you some good. Then when you are all ready, you could just hit a few select cities that you know will fill up, make your ends meet (and then some) as well as give your souls a boost.

    I know, it’s a little bit of everything that affects your thinking I am sure, but for what it’s worth, The Church are quite possibly THE greatest band in the world as far as I’m concerned. I mean, I could lie to you and say that I don’t love other bands too, but seriously, not the way I look up to The Crunch. You will never know how much enrichment I have gained from the whole experience of listening to and adoring The one and ONLY Church.

    But hey, if you guys do halt the efforts for a while (God forbid “for good”), I just want to say thanks for everything you have done so far. My life is considerably better because of your music and insight. I am very sorry (especially now) that I missed my shot at seeing you in Amsterdam…but hey, here’s hoping for the best, maybe down the road. I feel like you would really miss doing a show here and there around the globe. So, for now, I think I am going to count on a future possibility. 🙂

    Take care of yourselves out there…where ever you are.
    Much, much love and respect to you and the other fellas,
    Ben V.
    “Viva La Iglesia!!” 😉

  20. avatar
    Brien Comerford | 28 April 2007 at 9:56 pm #

    Arguably the most talented and creative band on the planet with the greatest frontman playing in front of 50 people. That shows how idiotic and insane the world truly is. The Church have been so loyal and they have endured having their myriad post 1992 masterful CDs being ignored by the music press and media. XTC, A band not nearly as good as The Church, have not toured for over 25 years. Their leader Andy Partridge has opted to release and record music without doing any touring. XTC is another overlooked but very dynamic band.

  21. avatar
    Anonymous | 28 April 2007 at 10:37 pm #

    The Church are fantastic band,but fans good-class music are rare species now!

  22. avatar
    Anonymous | 28 April 2007 at 10:43 pm #




    Why aren’t you playing Swindon, or Welvyn Garden City……or The Magnetic North Pole??



  23. avatar
    Anonymous | 28 April 2007 at 11:03 pm #

    Don’t blame you a bit, Steve. Still, how’s about a last tour in the states? A bit of $ before checking out? And no one says you can’t still make more amazing albums. Then the next phase begins…

  24. avatar
    Anonymous | 28 April 2007 at 11:07 pm #

    Killer, to make you feel just marginally better…in a bookshop I once read to four people…there were more Banana in Pyjama dolls with their sad little legs on the shelves than people in the audience…50 and I’d need riot police…

  25. avatar
    MEM | 28 April 2007 at 11:17 pm #

    the dream i awoke from this am… i thought would make a nice short story,

    i the first sentance of the first paragraph, i figured would start with the word…


    but that’s all we can remember…

    our tree comes down today,
    back in the basement for another year,

    it’s become an easter tree, decorated with mardi gras beads, a cobolt glass hand

    took the place of an angle or star,

    reaching towards…

    the dream i cannot remember, and all the rest,

  26. avatar
    Anonymous | 28 April 2007 at 11:23 pm #

    AH, it’s like child the time you say, NEVER again…but then you kinda ‘forget’ or will yourself to forget and there you are ..poping out another one…youve forgoton about the pain , both physical and financial…..bit like touring I imagine.

  27. avatar
    bearing down on planet earth~ | 28 April 2007 at 11:51 pm #


  28. avatar
    hurrah hurrah | 28 April 2007 at 11:54 pm #

    I’m so perky and happy and funny and bubbly and cute (with my tongue in my cheeky)
    i should just stand up on a bar and shout one for the boys while my sagging boobs light up through the beer drenched tee. weeeeeeeeeeee

  29. avatar
    peyore evol | 29 April 2007 at 12:18 am #

    i just got my papers im joing the marines to go slaughter some mangy panthers

  30. avatar
    Todd | 29 April 2007 at 12:22 am #


    am enjoying hearing your candid thoughts from the road.

    I am reminded of a tale my father tells of Johnny Cash coming to his home town and only a handful of people turning up.

    I can’t remember what happened next but people don’t always know a good thing when they have it amongst them!

    Keep blogging!

  31. avatar
    isolde | 29 April 2007 at 12:42 am #

    here is a story about a world class violinist who did some busking in a subway in washington

    if you are not in the right place the public reaction is not an indication of either your value as a player or the potential of the audience

    why do you put yourself in the wrong place? why don’t you feel you deserve the best? you give so much and you are the best

  32. avatar
    Anonymous | 29 April 2007 at 1:11 am #

    just play the big cities. and come to n.america. and yes play those big cities in the u.k.


  33. avatar
    melquiades | 29 April 2007 at 1:22 am #

    “Only then do you see it: He is the one who is real. They are the ghosts.”

    That is a great article and comparison of Steve.

    thank you,

  34. avatar
    Anonymous | 29 April 2007 at 2:45 am #

    Steven, I would totally understand if this is it – but please come to America one more time so we can see the best band in the history of music one more time…


  35. avatar
    ...being here, doing this... | 29 April 2007 at 3:14 am #


    the [peach juice “cunning linguist”] messenger has another message for mr k!…

    remember that strange blog search that lead to one result…

    “fall out boy”

    which, in turn, lead to this one result…

    “vengeance is mine, I shall repay” (ie turn the other cheek, let karma do its own work etc)

    well, “fall out boy” has just presented itself again today in a new context…

    a message came to me today that a band called “fall out boy” will be participating in this…

    Live Earth – The concerts for a climate in crisis

    …on JULY 7

    the Day of the Question

    which, in turn, is the precursor to the Day of Truth!

    Here’s an article about the Sydney leg.


  36. avatar
    Anonymous | 29 April 2007 at 3:41 am #

    NO NO NO NO….don’t throw in the guys make utterly awesome music and your CD’s are the only ones that I go out of my way to make sure that I have…you’d break my heart if you quit…
    I dug my own grave a little more last night.
    -The Hellbound Heart

  37. avatar
    Anonymous | 29 April 2007 at 4:01 am #

    I read that article a few weeks ago in the paper, Isolde, and it puts a very interesting perspective on our mangy panther’s current melancholy and the whole issue of being under-appreciated. SK, you should read it.

    Here in Sydney, life rolls on with alarming monotony. School holidays are over and the weather is blah – very rainy but not where it should be. My girls will be back from riding their scooters soon and peace will cease to exist in this house. You’ll soon be back in the bosom of your family too, old soldier. Only a few more sleeps….


  38. avatar
    Belfy | 29 April 2007 at 4:19 am #


    What more can you come to expect when you play in some unknown armpit in Holland that you have never heard of before being there?

    This is not an event to base the fate offuture tours on. You just need to stick to the places you know you will or have done well in.

    I would join the legions who say you should play more places in the UK. I bet you’d do well in Nottingham, Birmingham and Glasgow for starters. These are good music towns where people do still get their arses out to see bands.

    I know it’s hard at the end of the tour and you need record low turn-outs like a hole in the head, but I’m sure Brighton and London will be the opposite to this.

    I think it’s a matter of being more select – plus, wasn’t Hengelo added very late on?

    I saw the Cruel Sea play to 8 people in Derby once – and they gave it all – they were comparatively shite at a sold out Astoria in London a month later.

    Don’t let the logistics grind you down. Although I’m sure one day you will astound us all and quit.
    Rather Robert Smith than you tho. You’ve still got it – he sure aint!

    By the way – you give good drama.
    Hope it helps pack the house in London. Wish to heck I was there too!!


  39. avatar
    Andy from Coventry | 29 April 2007 at 4:28 am #

    Not sure if you read this stuff (hours in the day /night n all that..) Steve but I felt like writing. I saw you in Budapest. The nice tour girl brought me back stage & you kindly signed some stuff for me & gave me a hug (arhh!).
    I had tickets for Brighton last night & I set off by car from London but it took me 3 and a half hours to get out of London!! (they closed a tunnel & I entered perpetual road doom!!!) I phoned the venue & they said you were on stage at 8pm so about 20 miles from Brighton I knew I wasn’t going to make it & turned around. In all I spent 6 hours in the car on Saturday evening accompanied by an incredible frustration that I had been denied the opportunity to see my favourite band.
    So after reading your “tour blogs” , if I compend your expressed “negatives” then I completely understand why you think, ” yeh that might be it” (for touring anyway). I would feel the same.
    I was staggered to read that you guys drove your own van!! I would have driven it for you!!!
    I feel blessed to have seen you about a dozen times now, since 1990, and if Monday night in dirty London is the last time then so be it. I will be there this time – I’m taking the tube!! – forget about the usual tossers shouting for this n that. There will be a lot of true fans, like me, there who love you all, thank you for what you’ve done & have cherished it all.
    Do what you must, take care & rock for truly, you are The Blessed One (for me anyway!).
    See you on Monday night.
    Andy O’Sullivan x

  40. avatar
    van gogh | 29 April 2007 at 4:50 am #

    Why do some of you folks think that playing to an audience of 30 or 50 (or any small audience) is a bad thing ?

    Any true minstrel/musician/singer/speaker/preacher will, without any trace of shame, put his or her whole effort into delivering her or his message to WHOEVER IS WILLING TO LISTEN !! – even if that means an audience of 1.

    Sincere performers in history have done this to the day they died.

    Anyone who thinks they are too good to perform to a small audience really needs to ask themselves some hard questions about why they became an artist/performer in the first place.

    So you think it is a god-given right that intelligent art will be adored and appreciated by the masses and you will also be amply financially compensated for your efforts ??
    No such ‘right’ exists.

    If selling out football stadiums is what you’re about – why not just write some Def Leppard-style songs ? …they tend to rake in the crowds.

  41. avatar
    Brien Comerford | 29 April 2007 at 5:11 am #

    I rediscovered Steve Kilbey and the Church via a friend of my mine who was vistiting Australia and saw Steve Kilbey mesmerize an audience of 250 people at World Vegan Day in 2006. My friend is a thin carnivore and I am a heavy veggie, but we both know how important that event was. Save the planet and Steve has been doing it for over thirty proactive years. Just imagine that the incredibly talented Nick Drake had NO fans during his lifetime. Now he is considered a God ! Steve Kilbey tops Drake, Julian Cope, Talk Talk and other overlooked music luminaries. All of them are great and w innately graced with prowess and marvel that only an Omnipotent Creator could will.

  42. avatar
    isolde | 29 April 2007 at 5:17 am #

    van gogh i know you only got one ear but
    i think they need more than 50 cos of human energy fields and the transfer of such that helps them get through the performance

    i don’t think its cos they think its beneath them, i’m sure they would rather be playing to 30 dedicated fans than spending the evening schmoozing with 30 record company execs and their staff in a boardroom which would have been the outcome of taking the other road

    sk can’t you analyse the hits on this blog log to get the regional demographics? or even survey the fans before the bookings? everyone says oh i knew that would be a disaster … after the event

    i reckon if there is a small audience the format should be like a bar gig 40 minutes on and 20 minute breaks so everyone can have a drink, its all a bit intense if the crowd is so small no-one feels they can move cos they might disturb everything, and there’s not enough of the human energy vibe happening… thats my thoughts anyway

    howdy b.bon nice sunday arvo aint it? Hope you are having a good time davem and not rendered speechless by all the excitement

  43. avatar
    van gogh | 29 April 2007 at 6:31 am #


    you are right – the roar of the crowd is a powerful drug like no other.

    however, the professional performer must rapidly adapt to the context they find themself in – cold crowd, wrong day, awful venue etc etc. good performers always find a way of getting their message across to someone (!) despite prevailing circumstances.

    I think the Church playing Hengelo was no bad thing. They went to a small town that maybe doesn’t get good acts that often and they did not “preach to the converted” (they deserve some credit for this). I won’t slag off that audience just because they might not have immediately connected with the music – this is to be expected. Who knows how many hearts they won that night ? If you ONLY perform to people who already love you and everything you do, then it is about as challenging as shooting fish in a barrel.

    Point is – you are in it to try to connect with people and change attitudes not to feed your own ego.

    Having said all that – I agree with you that the Church sometimes seems to choose jarring performance venues for their music to be heard in. The keywords here should be “intimate”, “personal”, “confronting”. These might happen in a small smokey jazz club, an in-the-round theatre or some other less conventional venues. Does the world need another band standing up on an elevated stage trying to overwhelm the crowd with watts pumped out through (what are often) woolly, badly EQ’ed PA bins ? [in live sound terms, “Bigger does not equal better” and “Louder usually equals more muddy”, but I digress]
    This scenario will work for some bands and some crowds but perhaps the Church could look at some other possibilities.

    BTW – your Washington Post link was absolutely wonderful. Thankyou.

    Finished now.

    One-eared but not one-eyed ;>


  44. avatar
    Anonymous | 29 April 2007 at 7:09 am #

    Oooooh, that last bit sunk my little heart sk. I’ll just pretend you didn’t write that blog and all is dandy. Get back home A.S.A.P!!!
    Love you always,

  45. avatar
    malcolm arkey | 29 April 2007 at 7:38 am #

    Vienna Ballet
    Mr Marchant caught a couple of tasty B&W shots in Vienna…

    …PLUS !! if ya visit Violet-town ya can see Steve doing his best Swan Lake ballerina impression. Check out Image 4581.

    Mr Gogh – i agree with ya… “think about the nature of performance” (but i *always* say that)

  46. avatar
    sue cee | 29 April 2007 at 7:50 am #

    Dear Steve,
    It took me a while to write this as your blog was very upsetting to me because you sounded so sad lately especially today. This is not gonna be your last time in Europe, NO WAY!!! No way! It will just be a different type of tour. You sound so worn down and out. A break tomorrow and time to clear your head? I really understand how slogging it out on the road the way you have on this tour can be so disheartening. I can understand after all this time in showbiz that you want a bigger appreciative audience. Artists don’t just need it or want it, they CRAVE it. You deserve success and that means more people at your shows. Talent should be shared amongst many. I totally disagree that you should be happy with small crowds. I’m sure your fans don’t want that. For a solo gig, it can be intimate and enchanting but for the band as a whole on a full electric tour, no.

    Valid points too VG, absolutely, but it’s also about ticket sales, merchandise sales and putting coins in the slot to keep the machine turning!

    Hengelo was a very last minute addition – and don’t let that one bad apple in the audience spoil it either. There were many positives there too… some fantastic photos taken by the way which are up in eclectica . Next gig London and you’ll have so many loving, excited fans there giving you warmth and encouragement.

    Rock on SK. You’re NOT going to quit, no way. Things can change but dont give up. You have thousands of fans out there and its a matter of organising more central gigs with more notice. Im not sure everyone, with exception of those like Kevin N, etc know just how hard that is to organise a working tour schedule and fit things in, let alone all the details to think about and cant publicize until it IS finalised – I mean you cant even order the printing of a tour shirt until the tour dates are set in concrete. Im hoping that tomorrow you will be feeling more positive, ready for new challenges and I will feel like I overreacted 🙂

    love Sue

    ps If you feel like it, especially as you’re there, I would love to hear about ‘Images of London’?

  47. avatar
    PAGEY | 29 April 2007 at 8:12 am #

    god i always post so late in the numbers steve. you never get my good posts i imagine. i bet. ahh hell. If i only had up about ten years ago. people could sasmple their faves and then chance upon all the other greats. then you would be touring another ten years. You are anyways the greatest band ever. know it. the world is art crap. you are the light that remains to this day. god bless. share as we will be there always now i got my feet in the rock not the clay. peace. glenn

  48. avatar
    PAGEY | 29 April 2007 at 8:13 am #

    steve read above comment. love glenn your one and only male child. amos

  49. avatar
    kat | 29 April 2007 at 8:26 am #

    hmm. a stones song reference at the end.. hang in there, sk. maybe u just miss home.


  50. avatar
    Noah Vale | 29 April 2007 at 9:14 am #

    Thanks for coming to Brighton.

    They were handing out flyers for James cnuting Blunt as we left.

    Is that reason enough to carry on?

  51. avatar
    captainmission | 29 April 2007 at 9:35 am #

    that was so sad reading yr post i don’t know what to write, i feel that it is a crime that so few people appreciate yr vibe, but for us, the people that do its so nurishing and refreshing the thought of not having it is kinda heartbreaking. I’m sure that theres a positive side to it all, maybe just needs a bit of time….don’t dispair

  52. avatar
    isolde | 29 April 2007 at 10:26 am #

    hey van gogh thanks for your comments

    i wouldn’t normally comment again so often but seeing as you took the trouble to reply i thought i would too

    i know this thing “professionalism” as a performer is what “should” happen but the reason they are unique is because they break that rule

    sometimes they are, sometimes they aren’t but its actually what got me so fascinated in the first place, the shock of it, the sort of anarchic rule breaking non confirmist anti establishment eff you-ness of it all

    at first i thought oh my god what a waste so much talent and they mess it up for themselves

    but then i realised
    its what gives them their energy and their inspiration

    its what makes it exciting for the crowd

    its what makes it exciting to read this blog – every day its a roller coaster – its so not professional it shocks me but thats why i like it

    i am bored with professionals i work with professionals i don’t want the church to be a professional product

    i want them to be moody sensitive off the planet unpredictable and exciting princes of darkness and light who explore the depths and the heights and take me there in a song

  53. avatar
    Tim | 29 April 2007 at 11:12 am #

    Hi Mr. Kilbey, sorry to hear that the touring is tough.

    The Church totally blew my mind last summer, I look forward to the possibility of seeing you again.

    Regarding the Dutch guy, was he expecting a 2 or 3 song set? The beauty of The Church is that every song on a album is strong and moving. Hell, even the songs I didn’t know were equally moving and gripping as the tunes I was familiar with, that is the true test of songwriting. I mean up until the last few decades, music had to grip and entertain people in the moment – without the luxury of pounding repetition now offered by cds, ipods, etc…

    Take care, Tim

  54. avatar
    Dirk-Willem | 29 April 2007 at 11:25 am #

    Maybe the “Wally from Hengelo” only referred to your saying during the Ekko Utrecht concert “Come for the hits to Hengelo”

  55. avatar
    Symon | 29 April 2007 at 11:29 am #

    Steve….whether you believe it or not….whether you agree or not…whether you can see it or not….your muse…and you and the Church fucking mean something special to the people who have some understanding of what you are doing and trying to achieve (and always have).

    Can’t really say anymore…I don’t know what it’s like to drive across Europe for 3 weeks and then play in front of 50 people in the UK. My words must be pissweak and meaningless compared to how you are feeling right now.

    What I can see howeber is that the all The Time Being people above love and adore you and the church and your muse…hang in there….this time will pass and you will have peace with where things are at.

  56. avatar
    davem | 29 April 2007 at 11:38 am #

    Good morning Steve.
    I’m just back from Brighton, ready for a quick freshen up then on to London!
    Thanks for taking the trouble to speak with me and Mrs M yesterday and for being so fucking wonderful considering how fed up your were following Hengelo. You can’t know how happy you made me feel.
    I’m kind of hoping you’re feeling more encouraged given what a fantastic night it was. Good sized crowd and hugely supportive too.
    I can honestly say I have NEVER enjoyed a gig as much and I’ve been to hundreds.
    It was electric – in every sense.
    Good news that ticket sales for tomorrow are healthy. It should be a terrific night.
    However you choose to take your art forward is fine by me. If you choose to tour from time-to-time there’ll be no happier fiend on the planet than me. But I would understand if you decide just to weave your magic on canvas and cd.
    Either way, thank-you for yesterday. You truly are a remarkable and magnificent person.
    Thank-you from the bottom of my heart Steve.
    Much love

    Dave M (& Mrs M!!)

  57. avatar
    sue cee | 29 April 2007 at 12:11 pm #

    ps a late last note, whatever you do killah, you have LOTS of support

  58. avatar
    Tim | 29 April 2007 at 12:14 pm #

    A mis-managed tour and lack of promotion can kill any artists will to perform, but lets call a spade a spade, don’t give us that “I-wanna-throw-in-the-towel-crap” You certainly seemed pretty stoked to do this tour, so what if the whole world doesn’t love and adore what you do, can you live with just half the world coming to your shows? You sell out in Brighton, that tells me you had some pretty rough venues/tour stops in between. Don’t beat yourself up, beat up the guy who put you in those places. Look, if you don’t tell people you are coming, there won’t be many at the show and by the sounds of it you were not in the heart of “church” country. So yeah its humbling, but I am guessing that after a sell out in the homeland you will be riding high…the ups and downs of touring my friend…you’ve been here before..


  59. avatar
    nickfiction | 29 April 2007 at 12:47 pm #

    please don’t quit steve

  60. avatar
    jeanz | 29 April 2007 at 1:08 pm #

    This is real sad. You guys deserve so much better.There’s no justice in this world and thats a fact. Its all about whose hip in the music biz.
    New bands get a few good reviews and they start asking for so much shit just to play a gig.If you’re young and the buzz of the week then people will come see ya. If not you just depend on your loyal following.At the end of the day,however, noone is really selling any records.
    I haven’t been lucky with Church gigs. I either broke an arm the day before or missed some gig by a week.Tough shit.
    I thank god I was lucky enough to see you on the Aent tour and even to meet you. It was an amazing experience and I thank you for it.
    For all the music I listen to and all the new stuff I catch up with , you remain THE ONE.
    I do understand if The Church decides to stop touring, it would be a blow but the most important thing is that you’re still around and still fuckin kickin.You’re still coming up with the goods and dare I say getting better all the time.
    I think we should all thank you for still going out of your way to tour when deep down inside you know that some gigs aren’t simply gonna work.It takes a lot of guts and its a truimph for your passion for your art.

    i wish you the very best



  61. avatar
    van gogh | 29 April 2007 at 1:45 pm #


    Yep. That was a pretty poor choice of words by me.

    “Professional” can indeed carry some very negative connotations – hype, spin-doctor, falsity, B-S etc. (all the things I also hate).

    I guess I meant a word more like “experienced”.

    Thanks for mentioning that – I regretted writing that word the moment I pressed the “publish” button…but by then it is of course too late.

    Regarding your comments about playing in a bar – the Church did a few gigs at The Basement in Sydney (a sort of bar-cum-performance space) over the last few years. Really nice feeling IMHO. Close to crowd – intimate – band seemed comfortable and in their element. Don’t know why the Church doesn’t do more of that kind of thing while touring …logistics ?…contacts ?…not sure.

    van gauche


  62. avatar
    Anonymous | 29 April 2007 at 1:56 pm #

    blog at #46
    very robert smith-y of you


  63. avatar
    malcolm arkey | 29 April 2007 at 2:16 pm #

    Goede Middag, CVODB.
    Really nice digital photography work you did there. Your first two horizontal portraits (MWP and SK) I think are the best live shots of the band I’ve seen in a while.
    First shot: exposure on MWP’s face is just right given the strong rear lighting.
    I shot a few stage shows and concerts cuppla years ago (not of The Church) and it’s really difficult to get the exposure right while the lights are going up and down in intensity and changing in colours.

    Done any other stuff ?

  64. avatar
    Transdimensional Speeder | 29 April 2007 at 2:27 pm #

    Dearest Steve,

    You have led me on an aural/visual (hell, all six senses for that matter!) journey for almost 20 years now. You’ve inspired me and I’m always left wanting more.

    I figure this plea is kind of sounding like a “sliced bread” speech, but I just want you to know how important you are in this age.

    I hope you find the desire to plug on and keep leaving us in the dreamy, otherwordly wake of your musical explorations.

    Don’t let the bastards get you down – even if it is your own voice (that’s meant to be a joke. ha ha)

    Much love,
    aka Melkewydes

  65. avatar
    Gareth,Notts | 29 April 2007 at 3:53 pm #

    i loved the brighton gig,technical glitches ‘n’ all! by the end of Block i came out in goosebumps! awesome i’ve told you countless times before,you really should play Nottingham,amongst some other places north of london,theres a good music scene n gigs always seem busy.i’m more than happy with whatever songs you guys play(Hounds of love was awesome)but with a substantial back catalogue more impressive than any other band out there,i’d be quite happy to stand and watch you play for 12 hours non-stop(although i’m sure you’d shiver at the prospect!),greedy Church-aholic that i am.anyhoo,chin up steve-brighton=great gig,great place,shite venue,in my opinion anyway n i have a sneaky suspicion that the london gig will be a highpoint of this tour! btw…dave from The Suns where were you? couldn’t see ya,n Belfy,thought there was a chance you’d have made it to london,ah well catch ya another time!!

  66. avatar
    Volumes2002 | 29 April 2007 at 5:24 pm #


    I was at Brighton last night and I reckon that was the best set I’ve ever heard the Church play despite the technical problems and ‘bum notes’?!! It did’nt spoil it, you really rocked.
    I could see you talking to folks afterwards through the window from the street but decided I and my wife would not bother you.
    Just want to say whenever I go to a Church gig it costs us quite a bit as there is a lot of travel and time for us as well. Last night was worth every penny.
    I believe Trevor Boyd helped out with the ‘drum kit excursion’, so personal thanks to him if it helped put on the gig. And MWP is such a brilliant fu**in’show off – especially amusing watching Trev headbanging back!
    If you had only played London on a Monday I would not have been able to see the band.

    I sincerely hope that this will not be the last time in England for such a brilliantly ignored band. Come back soon. The comments others have made here about playing other English cities I reckon are right, you would get more than 50.

    Very best wishes for the London gig, and enjoy!!!


  67. avatar
    ~ | 29 April 2007 at 5:46 pm #

    on the plane
    the woman next to me was
    reading the news, and there was an article about shakespeare experiencing a “resurgance” in popularity, due to new books being released
    I imagine the bard would be laughing,and his muse would giggle
    cause neither of them were in it for zee popularity
    although how sad it is to see
    really low grade art music
    loved by the many
    when the deep and true (ahem, such as the Church,and Shakespeare for a few) don’t bring in large crowds
    it makes you wonder
    what in the world this world is coming to

    Shakespeare had a muse
    what was she,sprite,genie,invisible
    for certain female
    for certain, bizarre
    perhaps material, though not all the time
    she knew places she’d never traveled to before
    like the back of her hands
    the colours of interiors, numbers and names
    she liked to sleep a lot, I bet
    sorta nocturnal because she was a dreamer by trade though not profession
    some of her dreams she did not reveal to the Artiste, as her work, and her concern were for his own
    such is the nature and nurture of Inspiration
    she hangs brightly in the sky
    even during the day when stars cannot be easily seen
    is that why the bard is said to have written by candlelight?
    to better see her shine
    cause she didn’t shine unless he did
    I’m certain that London show will be
    a stunner,electric magnetic, as the Brighton show
    have only experienced 4 concerts in my days
    despite appearances, very selective about my music
    don’t forget it
    you should enjoy it to the hilt
    after all, it may be the last in some time
    unless you tour states
    or do some solo performances
    hope fully, you can do more acting
    if thusly inspired
    how talented you are
    don’t forget that either


  68. avatar
    weeeeeee!!!!!!!!!sparklyshiny | 29 April 2007 at 5:58 pm #

    thank ya san francisco

    now who posted the comment about the saggy/beer drinking tisk tisk
    you should get a proper spanking

  69. avatar
    Anonymous | 30 April 2007 at 3:23 pm #

    So my husband and I came from Orange County, CA to see you in Brighton. We didn’t wait to meet you because we are not as witty as them English people and my only interest would be to amuse you and your bandmates. I felt insecure. Also– we’ve been gone from our children for two weeks (2 daughters) and have been travelling non-stop (Amsterdam, France, Enlgand). We too enjoyed the Netherlands and the Dutch people… Beyond cool with their bikes (juggling take away food, ice cream cones and cell phones) and hot looks. I saw hot, young chicks in your Brighton audience. That place was packed! I screamed so much I lost my voice. I understand what you are stating and it beyond breaks my heart to think that I might never see The Church again. I’m not a rock star. I don’t know how these things work… and if I weren’t sitting in a time-share-paid-for by-my-mother-6-hours-from-London-in-the-middle-of-nowhere, I would be at that show tonight. I will be at all your shows in CA if you return. We always are. We have a network of friends that are ginormous fans (one of which stated before we left that he feared this tour of yours… that the Europeans forget a lot quicker if that makes sense– he also said that he saw pics of you lately and that you looked great– he said he liked his rocks stars thin… oh and you did look great!!! Better than I have ever seen you look!). I remember seeing the same thing happen to other bands that are hip. I can work for you for free if you tour again. Really I could! My husband works. My mom loves my kids enough to care for them while I’m gone. Oh I don’t know. Enjoy tonight’s show. I’ll be there in spirit (I’ll send £20 for spirit admission).

  70. avatar
    Heaven | 1 May 2007 at 7:55 pm #

    Thank you for the music in Utrecht, Steve.

    As for your troubles with scale and making ends meat:

    You & The Church are one of the few troubadours of this age. Jongleurs, taking their drunken message of love divine & demonic from town to town like wandering minstrels.

    I’m not sure your music and spirit would have survived in any other fashion in this day and age than below radar, hitting the ground almost any minute. The creative sweet sour spot to be.

    Still, in a few years I’ll have the means to cover one of your songs, distribute it globally and pay you all huge royalties. Any advice which song would be best to pick (not sure about ownership etc)?

    Not kidding,

    suggestions welcome at

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