ATARI TEENAGE RIOT – NINE INCH NAILS TOUR DIARY 1999

Second part of Alec Empire's tour diary...

3rd DAY: Vienna/ Austria 20-11-1999

I wake up hungry, freezing – no future.

It’s early – nobody’s up yet.

Vienna – oh god I’m so bored.

You see, ATR played about ten times in Vienna about five years ago, the time when we started. There was a very strong hardcore underground scene here. I remember coming here every two months.

The PRAXIS people were here and DJ Pure and Tina 303 and all the others. Cool people – great ideas but in reality all our shows were shit. We came back and back and it never developed somehow. We kill ourselves on stage and everybody is standing stiff and without any face expressions. And then people tell us afterwards that is was the most “mindblowing thing” they have ever seen. That was the time when Shizuo was our engineer – I remember going with him and the CRACK into this little restaurant and we just finished eating and there are all these neo-nazis coming in there and we find out it’s this big meeting and there are more and more coming and we decide to better get out – three against fifty – that’s not heroic that’s more like three fuck ups trying to change the world . I know we were not cool and we should have done it just for this story but whatever – I am just telling you the truth.

That was the same night when KHAN was so drunk that he made a move on Carl Crack. Shizuo was so confused because he wanted to order a coffee but you know this uptight waiter tortured us with at least 27 different coffee types and Mozart was playing in the background. But who wants to know about the past? Right.

So I enter this stadium and it’s like everywhere else – it’s the same. It seems when you are that big, concerts become like Seven Eleven’s – no matter where you go they’re all the same. I just want to be on my own and leave. It’s better like that. I walk through this “Prater” Fun-Park next to the venue. Everything is open but there is nobody there. It’s weird. It’s melancholic.

We can’t ignore the last elections in Austria. It doesn’t stop – this growing hidden fascism became visible for a few days in the international media. Austria is not an exception in Europe. This show is a good platform to wake some people up. Will you only care when they take away your piercing and forbid a rock’n’roll show like this. But then it will be too late, much too late. Switzerland has already these laws about sound-reduction, things must be quiet, not over 105 dB or so – people have louder stereo systems in their cars in London.