Last night I made my way to Carnival City on Joburg’s East Rand to watch Iron Maiden live. It’s the second time that this UK Heavy Metal act made their way here. The last time they played in South Africa was in 1995 (when current lead singer Bruce Dickinson was not part of the band).
I chose the safe option and made use of the High Five Party Bus to get my music loving ass there in one piece. We left Pretoria around 1:30 PM and after a 2-3 hour pit stop at Cool Runnings in Benoni we finally arrived at Carnival City around 6 PM.
Getting into the venue was a breeze and it didn’t take forever to get hold of our first beers for the evening from the bar. Around 7 PM Jasper Dan (the winner of a battle of the bands competition at Rumours) played their set. At that time I was hanging around the bar area and constantly bumping into people that I know, so I wasn’t really listening or paying attention to them. The few songs that I did hear were not bad, but I do think that there’s a lot better acts in SA that could’ve opened for Iron Maiden.
Next up were The Raven Age and I have to say that were not bad. George Harris (son of Iron Maiden bassist Steve Harris) is in this band and I have to say that what I heard wasn’t half bad. At that time I could sense that everyone wasn’t really paying attention and was just mentally preparing themselves for the main act.
Iron Maiden made their appearance on the stage around 9 PM and I before someone could shout “Up The Irons!” they were just absolutely rocking the place. The visuals were mind blowing and they were very tight and it did not take them long to completely suck in the attention of the audience.
During the night, the band worked their way through old and new material. The balance was perfect. It was great hearing new tracks like “Speed of Light” and “The Book of Souls” and also great to hear classic tracks like “The Trooper”, “Powerslave” and others. The highlight of the evening was definitely hearing the crowd singing along to “Fear Of The Dark”. I don’t think I’ll ever forget that experience.
Kudos to Big Concerts and everyone else involved in organizing this concert. The venue was perfect for this kind of show. The sound was good and the production level and quality was totally amazing. The only minor complaint I have is there wasn’t any shooters or spirits for sale at the bar, only beers and ciders. It felt weird not to be able to have a shot at a rock show #JustSaying.
Watch this space for regular updates in the Music category on Running Wolf’s Rant.