Sunday, March 18, 2007

Sccrrreeeeeeaaam for me Bangalore...

Wow! I mean... W O W !!!!!!

Mind Blowing! I simply do not have words to describe yesterday's ground breaking gig of the British heavy metal gods.

I got into the arena at 3:15pm and was able to find a place pretty near to the stage. Then ensued a wait for almost 2-3 hours in sweltering heat. As FtN and then Parikrama started playing, we began to understand that we needed to move slightly backwards to get a better picture of the stage. We were able to find a place where the ground was slightly higher. Okay, who were "WE"? Myself, Murali, Girish, Gos (Non-fan), Avi, Avi's friends (Gnanavardhan, Tejus and 2 more), Arun (Arun got us free tickets :D :D).

It all started off with the campus rock idol winners FtN - a Delhi based band. Personally, I did not like their performance. The frontman lacked what it takes to control the crowd and get them going. And all their songs sounded the same. The rhythm guitarist was good but other than that... its better to say nothing.

Then came Parikrama - they were great! Better than I expected... "But it rained" was their best performance. The singer was able to get the crowd going and people enjoyed the music. But the crowd response was nowhere near to the ones seen in gigs like "Rock in Rio", "Death on the road(Dortmund)", etc.... THAT IS, ONLY UNTIL MAIDEN TOOK STAGE!!

There were some people getting doped out and acting crazy. So much in the front rows that Parikrama actually stopped in the middle of a song to send a message out to the crowd: "Guys, its your lives that is being put to danger here... Please stay safe and have fun".

Lauren Harris - Steve Harris's daughter - well what do I say about her?! Just take her last name off and she would not be known anywhere! Respect for Stevie among the crowd is what saved her from getting booed more than what actually happened!

All these performances ended at 7:35pm. Then started a seemingly long wait. People coming onto stage to get the stage, equipment and other logistics in place. At 8:15pm, all the lights went off and a dramatic opera type music started to build up crowds expectations. Out of nowhere sounded 4 strikes from Nicko's signature drums and out came Adrian Smith thundering the hit single "Different World" from their latest album "A matter of life and death"...

Tell me what you can hear
And then tell me what you see
Everybody has a different way to view the world
I would like you to know
If you see the simple things
To appreciate this life, its not too late to learn

This was followed by a couple more hits from the new album. Then Bruce stopped to talk a bit about the tour and he made an honorable mention about the late Leon Ireland - the singer of Indian metal band "Moksha" and he dedicated the classic hit "Wrathchild" to him. This was a very touching and great gesture by Iron Maiden. They continued with a few more classics: The Trooper, The number of the beast.

The best moment of the concert was undoubtedly the song "Fear of the dark" - the crowd response to this song was out of this world!

Oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oooh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh ooh ...
I am the man who walks alone
When I'm walking the dark road
at night or strolling through the dark...

The ingredient missing from this scene was lighted candles... man would that have made a great picture or what!! But whatever, that was the best best moment for me. Another great moment was the beginning of the song "For the greater good of God" - those who know the lyrics will know what I'm going to say... Unknown people chaining hands in the air in unity - that's something special!

The band then doled out the self titled classic "Iron Maiden" and exited the stage with Bruce saying "Thank you and Good night Bangalore!" The crowd were thirsty for more and chants of "Maiden Maiden Maiden Maiden" filled the air (along with plenty of dust too!). Maiden came back to answer the cries. Bruce talked about things he had heard about people waiting 17 years for this day and said that you guys don't even need to wait 17 more months to see a similar day again!! They ended the show with 3 more great songs: 2 minutes to midnight, The evil that men do and THE anthem of heavy metal: Hallowed be thy name.

The guitar solos were all pretty good. Dave Murray was his fluent self. Adrian Smith was razor sharp with precision. Janick Gers was a shadow of himself... mostly due to his leg injury. Even though he was wearing a metal brace on the right knee, he was seen doing some of his brilliant crazy stuff towards the end. Bruce - a guy almost 50 years old - singing for 2 hours, screaming and jumping around was surely a sight to relish! Such energy and crowd command - AWESOME!

I have heard people complain about the sound quality. But guys, this is the best sound quality I've heard in concerts of this scale and magnitude. Being right near the stage sometimes adversely affects the sound hearing. I purposefully was stationed a bit backwards to enjoy the music. The short video clips I recorded with my mobile phone have audible and comprehendible audio quality!

I got home at 11:30pm totally exhausted. I wake up today and find that the words coming out of me is barely heard by my mom in front of me :D That's when I remembered the amount of screaming I did the previous night. Also, I will need a neck collar for the week ahead :D :D

All in all - a fantabulous gig and a great evening!!!!

Friday, March 09, 2007

Friday, March 02, 2007

Maiden are coming!!

Okay, I am late in posting this... So what?! Iron Maiden are coming to Bangalore... March 17th is the day! I finished uploading some Maiden samplers onto the already out-of-beta Blogamp. You should be hearing songs as this page loads...

Let me take this opportunity to say that IM India community on Orkut is one of the best communities I've seen! Rock on guys - hope to see some of the Maiden-heads at the concert!