Alternative rock band Microwave had to postpone and cancel dates on its world tour, set to cover the U.S. and U.K., due to the continued spread of the novel coronavirus. Cases of COVID-19 have risen to over 1,500 in Illinois with 16 deaths reported.
The band isn’t alone in its decision to cancel and postpone, as tours everywhere are being dropped, but that doesn’t make processing it much easier for lead singer Nathan Hardy.
The Atlanta-based band was on tour supporting the album “Death is a Warm Blanket,” released Sept. 13. It got two weeks in before cancelations started rolling in. Hardy said the band originally intended to play more shows, but the situation shifted so quickly. The frontman said one day the tour was continuing and the next, the situation needed to be reevaluated.
“Within 24 hours it was canceled,” Hardy said. “Everything.”
Well, not everything was canceled. The band announced via Instagram that it plans to reschedule dates on the second half of the tour, originally March 20 to April 4, to a later date.
Up until the tour’s abrupt end point, Hardy said the tour had been going well — each show being “the best show we’d ever played in every respective city.” He said the final show of the tour matched that energy.
The last show of the tour ended up being March 13 in Lincoln, Nebraska. The tour was supposed to run through April 4, closing out with a hometown show in Atlanta.
Hardy said they’d been closing the shows with the last track of the album, “Part of It,” and the scene in Lincoln was no different, according to Hardy.
The track builds slowly at first with bassist Tyler Hill’s grounding bass, drummer Timothy Pittard’s percussion and guitarist Travis Hill’s looming riffs. It progresses into Hardy’s full, dramatic proclamation of, “So when it’s all unfolding, when you’re ripping out your seams / when the tides start calling, I hope you think of me.”
The last lyrics ringing out from the stage that night would’ve been, “I want to know when it falls apart that I did my part / That part of it was me.”
Hardy said the themes within the song and album as a whole have taken on a new relevance with the current state of the world.
“It seems especially relevant now because there’s a lot of apocalyptic themes … end-of-times kind of vibes,” Hardy said. “It does definitely seem to hit more so right now.”
After the tour’s abrupt end, Hardy made his way back home to Atlanta. As of now, he doesn’t have too many plans for his five months off.
“I’m just taking it one day at a time,” Hardy said.
He said at the moment he’s editing songs for a math rock band and continuing to write his own music. He said the band had discussed doing a livestream concert, which has been a popular solution for many musicians via Instagram Live. But, Hardy said he isn’t sure if people will get tired of it.
“I don’t know if people are still going to be about it in like a week or two because like every band is doing that,” Hardy said. “But still there’s nothing better to do if you’re in a band. Might as well, even if no one pays for it, make a badass livestream.”
Microwave is available to stream on all platforms.