Superbreak’s Contact Centre Support Assistant, Tim Blackburn relived his teenage years a couple of weeks ago and headed to The O2 Arena to see Iron Maiden play once more. here’s what he made of the show…
I first saw Iron Maiden nearly fifteen years ago at the Manchester Apollo. My companion for that gig was by best friend James. We went to school together in Liverpool but in the intervening years we have both moved away; me here to York and him to Lewes near Brighton with a few stops along the way! I even managed to dig out my ticket from that night.
I wonder what those two seventeen year old lads would think of their thirty-something selves who arrived at the O2 to see the same band all those years later. The O2 didn’t even exist back then; we hadn’t even celebrated the Millennium!
During the day we visited historic Greenwich and the MeanTime brewery at the Old Naval College as they were holding a beer festival that weekend.
We stayed at the Ibis Styles hotel in London’s Docklands. It was well suited for our purposes, close to the O2 via DLR/Underground and very reasonably priced. We actually took the Emirates Airline cable car from Royal Victoria dock to the O2 and would highly recommend it for anyone with a head for heights.
The support band was Zico Chain. I hadn’t heard of them before we went to this gig and to be honest I won’t be rushing out to buy their album. They were okay but nothing special.
We waited with anticipation for the main event and when the intro song “Doctor Doctor” by UFO started booming through the speakers, the whole arena buzzed with excitement.
The set list was packed with classic Iron Maiden tracks, most from early in their career when they were really at their peak but also concentrating on the “Seventh Son of a Seventh Son” album and subsequent “Maiden England” tour; celebrating 25 years since the album was released.
They played several songs from the album, some of which have become staples of their live gigs such as “Can I Play with Madness?” and “The Evil That Men Do”. For the first time since the late 80’s they played the album’s title track, all ten minutes of it!
The highlight for me was in the middle of the set when they played “The Trooper”, “The Number of The Beast”, “Run to The Hills” and “Phantom of the Opera”. Four absolute stone-cold classics back to back!
I would have liked to hear “Hallowed Be Thy Name” (a personal favourite) but hey you can’t have everything!
The main set was rounded out with “Fear of The Dark” and “Iron Maiden” followed by a 3 song encore climaxing with “Running Free”. For six men on the wrong side of fifty their energy and enthusiasm was amazing and also really infectious. We had a really great time from beginning to end.
Read more Iron Maiden reviews in our other guest posts!