Judas Priest v Iron Maiden v Haglöfs

I’m still here. Well, not here exactly, everywhere but here. There’s been stuff, and things. Separately they’re easy to handle, put them together and it’s like trying to fill a balloon full of marbles.

I’ve had moments of escape though, one big long one has been not opening more than about three emails in the last month, I’m never good at that stuff in general but now I have The Fear of my inbox, I’ll tackle that next week. Maybe.
This week had so much potential for joy. On Tuesday night I went to see Judas Priest and on Wednesday it was Iron Maiden. They both played the same hall in the SECC but what a difference 24hrs can make.

I walked in from the city centre for Priest and it was so deserted that until I was standing in the hall looking at the stage I was sure the gig had been cancelled. The centre of Hall 4 had been curtained off to disguise the lack of audience, just a few hundred in a room that holds thousands. The stage show was amazing, old-school lights and pyro with a clear, loud sound to suit. KK Downing, the original guitarist, had left earlier in the year to be replaced by a bog-standard modern guitarist who spends too much time in front of the mirror trying to be Randy Rhoads. Soulless perfect shredding replaced KK’s frantic wailing and winging it, the harmony parts with Glen Tipton sounded all wrong and much more that I’d expected, the heart was missing from the music. Scott Travis had started that process when joined all those years ago anyway, technical and dry drumming that never really fitted the older tunes. Talking of which, Never Satisfied from their first album Rocka Rolla which nobody’s heard live for nearly 40 years sounded oddly contemporary and was the best song of the night for me.
Rob Halford was in good voice, the screechy outbursts only crept in towards the two-hour mark of the two and a half hour set. He seemed a little crestfallen at the view from the stage but soldiered on, even getting the audience ( I really can’t say crowd) to sing all of Breaking tha Law without him singing a word, that was cool.
The stage dynamic between Rob and the new guitarist was interesting, Rob and KK always had their little moments together during the shows which occasionally were uncomfortably replicated here, otherwise Rob ignored him. I wonder what the real story is with KK leaving.
Economics, KK leaving, the lack of a decent recent album, Rob Halford walking around in a silver hooded dressing gown singing “I am Nostradamus…”, I don’t know why the hall was empty, but exactly 30 years after the first time I saw Priest in the Apollo the band I loved, still love, was missing. I left feeling sad, after seeing them 20 times or so over those 30 years that’s a new one for me.

Fast forwards and I had to park further away the next night, always a good sign. The roads were busy, the carparks getting full, the concourse and merchandise stalls crowded but the hall still wasn’t full, Maiden didn’t fill Hall 4, that was unexpected, no seating just the floor space.
The stage show itself was good, the physical set up wasn’t as good as Priest’s, nor was the sound, for the first hour all we could hear was drums and bass, three guitarists on stage and not one of them properly audible. It did get better, and louder, and when the they got away from the 9 minute long baroque efforts of recent times and played some songs it was a good gig.
Bruce Dickinson’s voice was brilliant I thought, strong and in the right key all night, he’s annoying energetic for a 50 year old as well. Eddie made his appearances, once as a wander-on to play some guitar and at the end in huge monster form from behind the drum kit. I love that stuff, I’m glad I’ve never grown up.
Not perfect, but I left in a better frame of mind than the night before. Bought Holly a programme too, she loves Maiden. Next Gary Numan and Alice Cooper. Hmm, it really is all about the 70s for me isn’t it.

Outdoors? Aye, I can see it oot the windae (see below from last night) and while I’m driving. I have however squeezed in a visit to Haglöfs and I have a bunch of stuff to show and tell for 2012 including new lightweight footwear and pack range. I am excited.
I’m also packing a rucksack later today

Thank Jimmy for that.

10 thoughts on “Judas Priest v Iron Maiden v Haglöfs

  1. I suppsose your heroes are bound to disappoint you eventually, just a pity Priest have done it on their farewell tour. I’m stuck with that final night now.

    I love Breaking the Law, the whole British Steel album in fact, it’s still on my ipod.

  2. Airbourne/Krokus/AC-DC? All the same band aren’t they?! I have Priest’s greatest hits in the van at the moment and an Airbourne album. I won’t mention the banging techno tho.

    S’funny, cos I saw Leppard a couple of years back and they were way better than when I’d seen them in eighties. Sort of matured into it. Ahh, gigging is always good. I need to get on the case and sort some tickets out for something, it’s been a while.

    Good shout on the Fizans, done me proud wkd after I went over on the ankle and tore a few ligaments. Not as flash as the Leki Micros but the adjustable length won out in the end. Just bought an MLD bivy secondhand with cuben fibre, event and momentum on it. The poles, bivy, TN tarp, guys and pegs come in just under 800g. Not much of a saving on my Comp but it’s an entirely different experience and I have the poles to use during the day.. Can’t wait to get out this weekend on the south coast to try it.

  3. Well I eventually gave up on trying to find your post on the Mountain King Trail Blaze poles so I’m just sticking it on here!!! Index ?

    They are certainly light although naughty, naughty they aren’t as light as they say on the site. Seem a bit “agricultural” or perhaps simple might be a better word. No noticeable difference between my normals & the M.K. although the walk was only three hours.

    Not too sure how long that bit of “string” will last but time will tell.

    Now any more gear that I should splash out on :o)

  4. Was wondering where you were. Is Bruce Dickinson the pilot guy? (sorry, i could google it). I went to see Kings of Leon the other week in Edinburgh. They were good.
    Anyway, hope you get out and about soon. And Haglofs! What colours are we getting next year?…

  5. Aye, that AC/DC soundalike thing goes way back, I remember a Scandinavian band called Trash back in the early 80s were a perfect copy apart from the singers accent.
    Got soem Krokus on the ipod right now…
    Missed all the support bands, including Queensryche, last time I saw them was supporting Dio in 1984!
    Now looking at Rammstein next year and what show down south to travel to. Humph.

    Good job on the Fizans, and also the Trail Blaze. Fear not for the string, it’s dyneema, I know for a fact you can break the pole apart around it and it doesn’t break :o)
    More gear? I have many things lined up.

    Bruce is the pilot aye, he is the king of multi tasking. Haglofs coming up next week now, there are things you should like, the colours, the colours… There’s a skirt by the way.

    Now, back to compiling that index.

  6. Saw Maiden last night in Manchester. Good and bad like you mentionded. The vocals great, guitars had no real seperation between them, although this could be that the MEN acoustics are shite. And why do they persist in doing loads of their prog type numbers live. You can tell from the crowds reaction when they play say, the trooper etc, thats what we want more of. Still enjoyed it anyway. Good to see a few families with there kids as well. Keep passing the metal down.

  7. Aye, 9 minute long quiet/loud/quiet/loud epics that do my head in.

    There was a father and son in front of us in the SECC moshing away all night, that was brilliant. Passing on the torch right enough.

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