Bruce Dickinson was right tonight: many of their great songs, songs that i adore, are actually older than i am. And, unfortunately, i cannot say that i have been listening to them ever since i was in my mother's belly. Nope. But sometime, when i was nearly 14 and in the 9th grade (and a folk afficionado, for that matter), i completely accidentally received an mp3 cd that had a lot of "old-school rock and metal", as the title claimed. It contained Slayer, and Judas Priest, and Ac/Dc, and Black Sabbath, and Lep Zep, and Deep Purple, and Samson, and many others. And Iron Maiden. Not many songs: it had Aces High, and Two minutes to midnight, and Bring your daughter to the slaughter, and Run to the hills, and Killers. I really liked the entire cd, and as i listened to it, over and over again, i realised a completely new era of musical taste was taking over my humble self. I loved almost all songs and bands on that cd (i still have a problem with Slayer, though :) ), but Iron Maiden got to me beyond that. I soon found myself puzzled enough to look for anything related to maiden i could find: finding old recordings of some of their songs was a real bliss, and so was catching one of their videos on VH1 rocks or something. I had a personal interpretation of each and every song of theirs i came into contact with, and soon enough not a day went by without me listening to maiden, even though i could not find maiden enthusiasts among my friends or acquaintances in the beginning. the more i collected, the happier i become, in a period when i hardly had internet, there was no youtube, and some bulgarian pirate cds were among the best deals i could find. as soon as i would get my hands on a video live concert, i'd watch it obsessively, and discuss every frame, every fan gesture, every band member move with my friends. i started learning about heavy metal with maiden, i grew up with maiden, i had loads of fun with maiden on the background, i found the person that completely changed my life by talking about maiden.
i know my brief fandom history of 8 years cannot compare to the histories of people who have been listening to maiden and waiting for this concert for nearly 20 years. but well, i only came to life in 1985. back in highschool, seeing maiden live was one of my greatest dreams, but it also seemed completely out of reach, as i had no money to go see them abroad, and the idea of them coming back with bruce as a vocal was also kinda wild. which is why i was waiting for the concert last night as for the concert of my life.
and the concert of my life it was. I have no objective idea about the concert whatsoever. i have no clue whether it was as bloody awesome as i perceived it for people who only seldom (if at all) listened to Maiden before. it was a demonstration of passion and energy, and that would simply give me wings. being able to sing live, together with the band, some of the songs i could absolutely die for, was so liberating and fulfilling i still bear the playlist in the back of my head.
the songs seemed to be coming and going really fast, with Bruce Dickinson playing and jumping around, as well as interacting with the public as the passionate showman he obviously is, with Janick Gers continuously doing tricks, with Steve Harris, Adrian Smith and Dave Murray electrically performing and with Nicko McBrain beating the hell out of those drums. The complex old stage would go through loads of different moods and images, taking us through a great journey around maiden artwork and imagery. The playlist was flawless, with Aces High, Two minutes to midnight, Revelations, Trooper, Wasted Years, The number of the beast, Can i play with madness, Rime of the ancient mariner, Powerslave, Heaven can wait, Run to the hills, Fear of the dark, (obviously) Iron Maiden, and the bonus Moonchild, The Clairvoyant and Hallowed be thy name. It's been great, it's been emotional and it's now yet another great maiden-related memory.