Bruce at 55 years young….I have said it before and I’ll say it again…no one sings this type of rock or delivers it live better..just watch…..
Watch Bruce at the 1 minute 40 second mark literally take a tumble I mean the dude hits the deck (trips) but he doesn’t miss a lyric….!
Monday it was opening act Coop today it’s the main draw…Ladies and Gents….I present to Ya ……………..
IRON MAIDEN….July 21/2012
Rockfest is a 4 day hard rock festival held yearly outside of Cadott Wisconsin about a hour or so drive away. My younger brother Todd like I mentioned the other day got us VIP tickets the day of Maidens appearance so basically we were about 22 rows back on the floor from the stage. These were great seats. The venue itself is interesting it’s located in a huge field with only one farmhouse nearby. The seats in the VIP section(floor) have no cover from the weather and the only place for shade is in the VIP tent section of the venue.
Now let me tell Ya,my brother paid $175 U.S each for two tickets and included was our VIP tickets. Now if we would have paid for the lawn tickets they were going for a flat rate of $75 each and the view was pretty good also but my bro Todd said that if we’re driving 6 hours let’s treat ourselves shall we!!
VIP package was kick ass…it included all the beer you wanted/water/pop and the meals were awesome with chefs serving beef/chicken in the VIP tent! Plus the shitters were always clean as they had built in bathrooms on site!
In comparison,Tbay every year has it’s own festival here and there VIP is a waste of time and I can speak from expierence as I paid for it and it was a joke like seriously when Kim Mitchell played I had a fuckin birch tree in front of me!! Yeah a actual birch tree like talk about a obstructed view! (Should have brought a chainsaw)I won’t even plug this Festival as its a joke! The bands are good but the organizers c’mon man! I did send a email to the organizer and they did reply to my concerns but they did not like my comment that they should load up a SUV of Tbay festival suits and drive to Rockfest and see how a real VIP is run! They ignored that comment in my email! Hahahaha…..
Back to Rockfest so anyways like I said earlier it’s a 4 day festival. The first night I think it’s local bands that played but back in July of 2012 the Friday headliner was Five Finger Death Punch. Saturday was of course Maiden and Sunday was Def Leppard and (gulp) Poison!! Me and Todd were just going on the Saturday so by the time we got there at around 3 pm Svendust was playing ( dudes are heavy) followed by Papa Roach(better than I thought) Cooper(see yesterday’s review) and now the reason we are there…….
1988 and Maiden releases Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son and by the end of the decade Maidens popularity is taking a hit (not with me..hahaha) as there were more than a few empty seats on there North American tour and Seventh Son sold but it did not do as well as expected. For me though it’s always been of my favs by Maiden I loved how they melted the use of the synth with guitars and with Nicko smashing and the Air Raid Siren(Bruce) wailing away on vocals. I love the 7th Son album and still do!
Fast forward to 2014 and Maiden decides to redo what many missed in 88 the first time the whole 7th Son deal! So by the time the Maiden machine rolls into Cadott it’s a set recreation done with the memories of 1988 but with the technology of 2012!
Case in point when Maiden showed up to Rockfest they had to add 6 feet to the front of the stage and add another 12 feet behind the stage to get all the Eddie props in! No short cuts for Maiden! Also they showed up with 12 semis (transport trucks) with gear and 10 tour busses with there entourage! That’s how it’s done!
So 9 pm sharp and UFOs Doctor Doctor is pumped over the PA and once the UFO tune is done there on the screens are the icebergs and Eddie and now the intro to Moonchild …the acoustic and Bruce singing his 7 deadly sins bit….and whoah here comes the synth and the volume is GETTIN louder and here’s the guitars and bam…..
MAIDEN RIPS INTO MOONCHILD- there they are…Maiden it’s still hot as hell outside and Bruce is above Nicko on the ramps behind the drums and Janick Gers/Dave Murray/Adrian Smith and Steve Harris charge the front and it takes Harris all of 2 minutes to crank his leg on the floor monitor! Maiden is delivering and Ummm I’m losing my shit already! Like how could you not?! It’s Maiden!
CAN I PLAY WITH MADNESS- Can I Play With…..Bam pyro drops from the top of the light truss and we’re off. Bruce commands attention and man the dudes on fire 55 years young and giving it his all! Shit his vocals are amazing and the dude is in tremodous shape! Running not missing a beat! Crazy good! No Teleprompters used! This stage is massive!
PRISONER-We want information…..Aahhhhh Nicko slams the skins and the 3 Amigos on guitars join in and Harris and now Bruce is working the front of the stage and telling all the lazy ass fucks to get moving! This is classic Maiden from the Number Of The Beast era! This song is mint……pure gold as Aaron would say!
2 MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT- Adrian Smith hammers down the opening riff and it’s becoming apparent that when Maiden play the solos it’s Dave and Adrian just like yesteryear. Janick is there but nailing down rhythms as the two original guys have reclaimed there solos on the old songs(pre Gers era)As well as they should …..Bruce throws out a few Hey Heys Heys and keeps the crowd going! Don’t worry man Dickinson plays right to the last guy in the crowd way up,in the hills…..
AFRAID TO SHOOT STRANGERS- so Maiden breaks protocol and plays this track from Fear Of The Dark! In other words they throw Janick a guitar bone as he solos away like a lunatic. Good soldier he is and well why not! Kick back let Adrian and Davey have there 80s heyday solos and when duty calls nail down your solos, put on a show stage right and collect your big paycheque! Win win for everyone!
THE TROOPER-here comes Bruce in his British uniform and waving a torn Union Jack flag and the rest of the Maiden crew is Center stage and the music just blows is away. I mean it’s Dave Murray ripping the frets on his guitar during the solo and boom Adrian joins him….Bruce leads the charge from atop the stage. What must be noted is the backdrops of various Eddie images throughout Maidens career. The Trooper is one em!
THE NUMBER OF THE BEAST- speaking of backdrops check out the vid posted as this is a great visual for this song! This is epic Maiden! Great opening,Harris and the guitars in sync and Dickinson gives that ear piercing ….yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! Fire,fire and more fire…this song is taking us to hell! Shit I swear at one point of this song I took a glance at my bro and I thought I had seen devil horns on his head!!! Hahahaha ..just joking Todd! But this is another song that just wails classic! Plus like I said at the the top of the page Bruce mugs out and doesn’t miss a beat…..if that was Axl Rose he would have gone home!
PHANTOM OF THE OPERA- epic 8 minute romper from the debut Maiden album from 1980! You want guitar historics,vocals,drums,bass thumping and pyro! Here it is….the hardcore fans (me) were impressed they dug this one out dusted it off and Maiden kicked our asses with it!
RUN TO THE HILLS- Nicko sets the pace and if you are a hard rocker you know this tune and really do I need to explain it to you? I will say though during the solos more pyro and a 7 foot Confederate Eddie walking back and forth and darting around the stage is Janick Gers! Tossing about his strat high into the air!
WASTED YEARS-ahhh this is Todds favourite Maiden tune! Smith really exploded as a songwriter on this track and the album it’s from Somewhere In Time may be its best track on there! The solo Is friggin good and Bruce makes the crowd sing it….Face up!
SEVENTH SON OF A SEVENTH SON- how about the whole deal of the tour delivered here in its 12 minute glory! The title track Bruce commands the stage! Man this is epic! Who knows how tall Eddie is holding the globe and man the solos are sick especially Smiths as he displays along with Murray why they dethroned Tipton/Downing as my fav one two guitar punch! Shit just go,and listen to Killers as that’s Smiths debut with Murray..they blazed trials and as a little headbanger back than! HOLY SHIT Sez I!
THE CLAIRVOYANT- this is a great track. I mean the verses are catchy and there’s a time to live and a time to die ! Bingo folks this is heavy duty stuff! The solos are great Nicko and Harris are locked in tighter than the bottles of Scotch in Tbones boozey cabinet!
FEAR OF THE DARK- wow another epic classic! FOTD is a slow builder and than it shifts into hyper gear with everyone in metal sync and watch Bruce in the vid go from one side of the stage to the other. The man hustles,no slouching ever…. That’s why he’s the best in the biz right now especially in the endurance test of live Metal ! This is a great track and Janick rips the solo! Classic Maiden ….
IRON MAIDEN- Scream for me Wisconsin sez Bruce…I dunno, I wish for shits and giggles Bruce woulda tossed out a Scream For Me Hammersmith!! I would lost it man! Haha..but still Bruce commands the epic song and well here comes the 7th Son Eddie holding a beating heart in its left hand with a mini Eddie trying to bust out! Crazy over the top production! Maiden says goodnight more pyro and me and Todd are blown away!
ACES HIGH-After a minute or so…..on the screens here comes the Second World War footage of Airplanes engaging in battle…and now Winston Churchills Speech and boom Maidens back on stage after the stage explodes and there’s the Aces High backdrop! That stuff is so cool looking! Rollin Rollin Turnin Turnin…Do It Again…
THE EVIL THAT MEN DO- once again another solid tune from 7th Son! Love the galloping bass. Harris is the King of the 4 string and plus the dude tunes his own bass inbetween songs! Steve if your reading this(Hahahaha) I will roadie for you! This is a great track and guess how the song ends ..exactly more pyro! BAAAAAAAAM BAAAAAAAAAM!
RUNNING FREE- and boom into Nicko laying down the shuffle with Steve and it’s Running Free! Bruce works the crowd over one last time and basically lays claim that no band is better live than Maiden!
So basically as you can gather from this review I along with Todd were blown away by this performance! As you readers know I have seen a few shows in my life time (ha) Maiden 2012 was THE BEST live performance/production I have ever seen! Maiden ruled that night and blew my mind (what’s left of it that is) and proved that without a doubt they are THE force to be reckoned with!
I’m not the only one who felt this way what I heard was that normally each day at Rockfest the attendance is about 25,000-35,000. When Maiden showed up to Wisconsin for there show close to 50,000 passed thru the gates to check out Maiden!
One more story….the people that were beside us were cool guys but one dude made a remark after Maiden exited that he was bummed that Maiden did not play Hallowed Be Thy Name!!?. Fair enuff but Steve and the boys have played Hallowed every tour since 1982 so Ummm cut em some slack fellas…..especially when this guy beside me was losing his shit on how Maiden was rocking it big time earlier that night!