Iron Maiden Genting Arena 7-8-18
First up was Killswitch Engage who had the unenviable job of playing to a sea of Maiden t shirts and in their 45 minute set they managed a very decent job in warming up the masses although who needed it when the temperature outside was topping 80 degrees.
Jesse Leach on vocals was an imposing figure with for me a little too much emphasis on the shouty roar where as on My Last Serenade his vocal's were superb.
A couple of real chugathons had heads nodding before they ended with Holy Diver yes that one and in a sea of horns and plenty of guitar soloing they finished on a high.
How do you top the simply amazing Book Of Souls tour that went number one world wide and the tour set a new bench mark for Maiden fans across the globe?
Taking the name of the tour and themes from their free mobile game The Legacy Of The Beast that's how?Not a greatest hit's tour but a tour of greatest hit's with fan favourites added and all fitting into 3 distinct themes of war then religion then hell.
As the traditional gig opening UFO's Doctor Doctor started anticipation hit fever pitch and as the lights dropped and the intro tape for Aces High started and as Churchill's famous words filled the venue goosebumps hit every neck in the building.
For a little under 2 hours we went on a journey with Iron Maiden and here is what they played.
This was a joy and to share it with my 2 boys and feel the same excitement as I did way back in 1983 when I saw them on the Piece Of Mind tour at Oxford Apollo (this now being my 29th Maiden gig) was a moment to treasure.
With social media all over it we knew what was coming and as the band ran on stage with the 90% to scale Spitfire hanging above them bloody hell what a sight.
Aces High indeed.
Maiden in all their glory with huge light rig and wonderful sound and Bruce Dickinson in flying officer's jacket and flying goggles and sounding incredible and the crowd at fever pitch thsi will take some topping.Band and crowd in perfect unison.
Bruce cover's every inch of the stage on the first song with Steve Harris on bass strafing the crowd machine gun style before Dave Murray nails the first of the evening's guitar solo's with the sound perfect.Steve looks no older ever and here he is at 62 leading his beloved team to greater heights.Top bloke.
Christ many band's would end with that set up as they couldn't top it but Maiden start with it before we in real term's get the second set opener.
Where Eagles Dare was the first song I ever saw Maiden play live and as Nicko Mcbrain hits the same intro as he did way back in the day when he also said welcome to the Maiden family again goose bumps hit.
What a song.One of Maiden's best with Nicko's insistent drum track and guitar's roaring with Bruce now a top the stage set with his his suitable jacket for the snowy scene on the next amazing back drop.
Song 3 saw Adrian Smith churn out the riff to 2 Minutes To Midnight and the quality and performance level never dropped an iota with the first of many Scream For Me Birmingham's reaching the stars.
We were given a breather for a second as Bruce said a few word's for the only time of the night.He explained no words needed it's all in the performance.
He was interrupted by the fan's breaking into singing him Happy Birthday as it was his 60th birthday and we all saluted a vocal and stage great who is an inspiration to us all who has battled back from adversity and is sounding as good as ever and has boundless energy of someone a quarter of his age.
Next up was The Clansman with Bruce waving a huge claymore around and Janick Gers first solo of the evening.Often the butt of fan jokes his off the wall style just about sit's in the material and his energy level's never stop as he prances this way and that.
As the back drop changed again to show Eddie on horse back The Trooper had every fist in the air as a huge walk on Eddie was now tackled by Bruce who was still waving his claymore!!!
Next up was Revelations with the back drop simply beautiful with an epic cathedral/palace stage set with candelabra dropping from the ceiling and huge arches with stained glass windows with various Eddie's across the year's gracing the glass.
Always loved this song with it's stop start guitar riff and crowd interaction and another highlight with the back drop staggering giving it a feel of a theatre production.
For The Greater Good Of God was a welcome addition from The Matter Of Life And Death cd and the mid song work out showed the melodies of the 3 guitar team to it's full potential.
Adrian then hit the opening riff The Wicker Man that moment 19 years ago when he and Bruce rejoined and the world was a better place.Great song and lots of crowd involvement too.
Sign Of The Cross for me has always been a bit of a plodder and even with Bruce in full ham mode with lighted cross and cape flowing a slight dip for me.Fitted in with the theme but they have so many wonderful song's!!!
That was blown of the water immediately as for the first time in 35 years Flight Of Icarus ripped Birmingham a new one.Great riff and Bruce was joined by a huge Icarus as a top the stage set he set the world alight with flame thrower's in hand.
Some of the guitar solo's have been changed over the year's with Janick doing some so for me a pleasure to see Dave and then Adrian in their original role's.The solo's stick close to the original frame work but every tour a slight adaption and Dave's end of song solo was fantastic with finger's a blur and Bruce what a scream as he burned Icarus to the ground.Wow.
Fear Of The Dark with Bruce now in full long black jacket and hat and carrying a lantern still has wonderful crowd involvement after all this time and tonight was no different.
Number Of The Beast had so much pyro that could have made toast at 50 paces and again a joy yo see the guitar split with Dave then Adrian in perfect harmony and goose bumps up yet again.
Iron Maiden had a huge new Eddie as a back drop and loved Bruce's comment to Janick as he ran his foot over his guitar.Can we end said Bruce,Janick replied I am tuning it so Bruce added you haven't been in tune for 20 years to which Steve nearly fell off the drum riser!!
Nicko led us through another Happy Birthday Bruce before being admonished by Bruce stating get on with it!!!
3 encores The Evil That Man Do before a welcome return for Hallowed Be Thy Name with Bruce playing with a rope noose behind bars before Run To The Hills was screamed by one and all.
Iron Maiden continue to set the standard for everyone to follow with this presentation a delight both audibly and visually.
The Legacy Of The Beast is all of us the whole Maiden family as we rejoice time and again in a career of epic proportion.
The greatest show on earth and then some.
Long may it continue.