Sunday, November 8th, 2009 | Portugal 2009 | 38°42' N, 9°8' W
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I’d been waiting a long time for this trip. I’d seen Rammstein in Berlin at the end of 2004, and apart from a few gigs in early 2005 they hadn’t played live since. At first I checked their website daily to see if new live dates were being announced; later I checked weekly. Later still I checked once in a while, my hopes dashed every time. I hadn’t checked for months when I decided on a whim to have a look in May 2009.

The news was awesome. A new album was forthcoming, and a tour would start in November. All I needed to do was work out where to see them. Berlin again would have been cool, but the tickets were savagely expensive. Paris was easy to get to, but the tickets sold out there within hours. Poland? Couldn’t find cheap flights. Norway? The tickets there were twice the price of even the Berlin ones. Spain or Portugal? Somehow the concept of Rammstein in sunny southern Europe seemed strange to me, but in fact, the cheapest tickets on the tour were those for the opening night in Lisbon. I bought my tickets and began to anticipate.

I hadn’t been to Lisbon before. I spend a day wandering around the centre in a sleepy haze after a 4am start. In the evening I found myself tailed by a crocodile of drug dealers. I had a new haircut, a style which didn’t attract too much attention in London, but the likes of which had clearly never been seen in Lisbon before. I seemed to be a suitable target.

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