It's been over a month since Kansas City's the Architects set out on tour with Jersey's rock darlings My Chemical Romance. So far, they've gone from coast to coast, and crossed international borders, leaving a trail of cigarette ash and whiskey film behind them. We caught up with guitarist Keenan Nichols for some quick updates about life on the road, sold-out venues, and getting searched by the border police.
The Pitch: How long have you guys been on the road now?
Keenan Nichols: We left March 28 and drove straight to Oakland for our first show on the My Chemical Romance "World Contamination Tour." So just a little over a month now.
How has touring with the MCR dudes been?
The tour ends in Las Vegas on June 1, and they have been awesome! The guys and their entire crew have been so great to us. Hands down, best tour we have ever been a part of! I wish it lasted for another two months.
What's the best city and/or venue you've played in so far?
Best city? NYC. Two nights in a row at Terminal 5, SOLD OUT! We hadn't had a good crowd in New York in a while, but the crowd this time was really there for us, both nights. It made us feel really at home. The best venue so far has been the Eagles Ballroom in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Sold-out with a 5,000-head cap! One of the coolest venues in America -- an oval-shaped concert hall with a natural six-second delay, so everything you play sounds like AC/DC at Donington. Plus, it's one of the most haunted places in Wisconsin -- look it up!
What has been your favorite moment on tour thus far?
My favorite moment is more of a recurring one. When we start a song and the lights come up, and you see the crowd buckle like a wave on the ocean, but made of people just ebbing and flowing ... I can't really explain how incredible it is to watch, but when it happens, it's truly a thing of beauty.
And the most hilarious?
After crossing back into America from Canada, we rolled up on some "Red Dawn"-style highway blockade: blinding white lights, shit-tons of cops, drug dogs -- the whole nine yards. They take a dog 'round the van and trailer, and one cop starts talking all this shit to us. He said, "All right boys, no bullshit! Tuck up boys? My dog smells weed. Outta the van!" And I'm thinking, "What does 'tuck up' mean??" So we pull off of the road, and this shithead just toss the van, running his dogs through it five or six times, still talking mad shit: "It's obvious you all smoke weed. Tell me where it is! My dog is gonna find it, then you're all gonna be fucked!" After 20 minutes of standing in the freezing cold on the side of the highway, he came back all dejected and told us to pick up our backpacks off of the bench and go. The funny thing is, I was high as hell.
When do you guys come home to Kansas City?
We roll back into KCMO around June 3 and are heading straight into the studio to start recording our new record!
What are you most excited to come home to?
My fiancee and my little wiener dogs, of course, but all of the familiar things, too -- how my house smells, having the windows open, going to the drive-in, Royals' night games, stuff like that. Oh, and sleeping in a bed.