Israeli punk rockers Not On Tour played this year’s Groezrock festival for the second time. In 2015 they played the Macbeth stage and this year they opened the Main stage on Saturday with their poppy and catchy punkrock sing-alongs. I had a chat with front woman Sima and drummer Gutzy. The recording got screwed up but here’s the short result anyway (and sorry for the delay).
Not On Tour is a four piece band, who were all friends before forming the band. “We have a really small scene, we’re from the Middle East and every single person plays in a lot of bands. At one time all bands were on tour and there were no other bands in town so we ended up together and started ‘Not On Tour’ and That’s who we are the band that is Not On Tour”, Gutzy and Sima introduces the band.
The most famous punk rock band from Israel is Useless ID. “They are the reason why we are here. They have always been there for us and are our inspiration. They started a lot of it in Israel maybe not all of it by hands but by spirit. They liked something and started doing it, something that was not happening in Israel. We went on tour with them and are real friends. They work(ed) very hard, keep on playing doing a lot DIY and kept the good spirit going. We all wanted to do the same, play punk rock and have fun,” Gutzy and Sima explain. Also touring is special for ‘Not On Tour’: “We can’t just jump in a car and go play somewhere mostly it means for them to book a plane ticket, take a holiday, …. We come from a small scene and when we go abroad there’s also a lot to see, … .”
The Israeli scene in a way has a lot in common with the Belgium scene: “There are enough shows but it comes in waves. It is also a die-hard scene and most of the people that come to the shows are the ones that you know for 15 years or so but also younger kids show up which is great. We sometimes think that it all is dying but when you come home from a tour and see all the new faces… Some people retire or whatever from going to shows, other stay loyal but someone has to come after you to keep things going.
Like I said in the introduction a lot of the recording got screwed up in a way that I couldn’t make anything good out of it. Nevertheless ‘Not On Tour’ is a great band and they are nice people so whenever they are playing your town or somewhere nearby go out to see them and give them some support.