Black Velvet: What is something you think people who don’t go on tour don’t understand about the touring lifestyle?
Mat Devine: How annoying it is to carry a huge bag to and from your hotel room every single day... and how stage clothes never get dry.
BV: What was your first ever tour like?
MD: Some MTV college ‘You Saw It First’ thing in the US with three other newly signed bands. No-one came... We called it the ‘No-one Saw It Ever’ tour.
BV: How does going out on tour make you feel – in your mind, heart and soul? How do you feel the morning you’re about to leave for tour?
MD: You're excited, especially if it’s to countries or cities you've never been to, and with bands you're excited to watch and meet. Every band member has their own baggage and issues on their minds; money, girlfriends, cats, wives or whatever... so depending on what's going on in your personal life at the time, you're either dreading parting from the people you love, or thrilled to leave town. All it takes is one show in front of fans, and a couple of hours joking with the band to realize that it's where you belong.
BV: Tell us about some of your crew. How many people do you have in your crew, who are they and how good are they at their job?
MD: Depending on the size of the tour, we have as many as five (plus film crew) or as few as two. You really should interview our guitar tech, Wooter. I’m not kidding. You need to. He's been with us since Day 1. He’s the ONLY constant.
BV: If you could suggest an improvement to venues to make your touring life easier, what would you suggest they do or have?
MD: Make sure the showers work and wifi is fast… make sure the loaders are not high. And a room with pure oxygen would be nice too :)
BV: What is something you’ve discovered about a fellow bandmate while on tour?
MD: One tour I shared a bed with Elias EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. I discovered that his legs are very hairy, but it’s a super soft rabbit-y hair.
BV: What is something you do on tour that people might be surprised to discover?
MD: I don’t know how many times I've shaved in a Starbucks...
BV: Coolest band you’ve toured with?
MD: I still love the H.I.M. tour... Ville and I started rival death metal bands... Mine is called Arch Bishop and his is called the Mercy Fucks.
BV: Raddest fan you’ve ever met on tour?
MD: All our fans are rad. We get incredible gifts, they show us beautiful tattoos etc... I just got an Alexander McQueen scarf last week from a fan in Bristol... but once in Nashville, a fan showed up with a full pasta meal... I mean like wine, bread, salad, cutlery, and a pot of pasta the size of my apartment. Seems silly, but I was so starving at the time it meant a lot.
BV: Have you ever lost anything important on tour? I know your tourbus went up in flames in the Swiss Alps the other year – tell us about what you lost due to that and how hard was it to replace everything?
MD: We'll never replace those things... photos of your family, journals, lyrics... what I miss the most is my leather jacket... do you know how hard it is to find a PERFECT leather jacket that doesn’t make you look like a douche?
BV: This is why we only wear velvet. (That and the fact that we’re vegan…)
BV: Most torturous (or nightmarish) moment on tour?
MD: In Washington on a highway at night, sliding backwards down a steep hill on ice in a blinding snowstorm...
BV: Fill in the blanks: When I was in _________ I had the most amazing ___________.
MD: When I was in my ex-managers office in Chicago I had the most amazing epiphany that he was a total asshole.
BV: You posted a pic of yourself and the KHK with bags of Skittles that they’d given you. Obviously every tour you get brought gifts from fans. Are there any particular gifts you’d still like but haven’t been given or would like more of? What always goes down well? What should fans bring you next tour?
MD: I think I have enough skittles for the next few years... maybe healthy stuff? No-one brings green tea or seaweed chips or raw ginger... you know? Red wine always excites me the most, but I feel guilty ‘cause it’s pricey... not to sound like a parent but the homemade gifts are free to make, and they mean so much :)
BV: What soul would you most like to torture (in a good way) with your show (ie. Who would you most LOVE to come and see you play)?
MD: Easy. The film director Michael Mann.
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Read interviews with Kill Hannah in the printed Black Velvet. Issues 65, 57 and 51 each contain an interview with Kill Hannah. Order from www.blackvelvetmagazine.com/backissues.htm