Iron Maiden, 8/6/03

Jon and I checked this show out kind of on a whim… I saw a link on my bank's webpage when I was doing some bills that said free tickets, so I checked it out, and lo and behold, there was Iron Maiden. I had never really listened to them, but Jon has, and pretty much every good metal band considers Maiden one of their bigger influences, so I was definitely up for going. We took our time in getting there, since Motorhead and Dio were opening for them. We had no desire to see Motorhead or Dio, but we got there in time to catch Dio's last 2-3 songs. They were ok, nothing special.

The set change for Iron Maiden took a while, but it was worth it. Their stage setup was really cool. They had a ramp going all around the stage, and it kind of enclosed the stage and made it look like an arena of some sort. Their set was pretty good, but it would have been a lot cooler if I knew some of the songs. I was just kinda taking in the vibe and enjoying the music… I tell ya, if you can make an award for best guitar harmonies, Iron Maiden would win it hands down. Pretty much every one of their songs has an extended harmonized lead section (or many), and it was damn sweet to hear them live. It was especially cool since they have 3 full time guitarists… Apparently they started with 2, one quit and another joined, then the first guy rejoined, and they just kept all 3. So they had all sorts of room to play the sweet harmonies without the rhythm end suffering.

Overall it was a pretty good show, but it would have been a lot cooler for me if I knew the material. Grade: B+.

As a side note, Jon and I decided on the way home that every crappy nu-metal band should be locked in a room for like two weeks listening to nothing but Iron Maiden, Old Metallica, Old Megadeth, vintage Slayer, and some Sepultura. That way, some of the better sounds and ideals from the greats of metal might permeate into the newer crap bands, and newer metal might not suck so bad.

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