It was only couple of months after the release of their critically acclaimed United Abominations CD and the short tour as direct support for Heaven & Hell that we would find Megadeth once again hitting the road as a headliner. The New York City show would sell out within moments of the tickets going on sale and this had many Metal heads convinced that a second appearance would be added – sadly this was not to be the case so if you snared a ticket you were one of the lucky ones. For one night night only Mustaine and company would take over the intimate setting of The Fillmore NY, and while many may argue about the actual intimacy of a venue that holds almost 1200 fans, you can surely agree that given the maximum capacity it is no longer truly suitable for a band of this caliber. I felt that while it would be cool to see them perform in a place of this size I also felt that their doing so locked a lot of people out of the show. I guess that Megadeth will have to see about returning soon and booking a bigger capacity place to guarantee everyone gets the chance to see them. Touring with the group would be two openers and this find both The Confession and In This Moment starting things up. Here is a little bit about some of the evening's goings on for those who were not fortunate enough to get a ticket. The Confession would be the first band up.
The Confession: I have to admit that I was unsure of the reaction that either of these openers would get tonight and although I arrived during the middle of the set for The Confession, I could tell that they were having the welcome mat pulled out from under them by the larger part of the crowd who was already in place. Now, I have heard The Confession on CD only and was really interested in catching them in the live sense as the stuff they are doing isn't really all that bad. It's a little bit like Avenged Sevenfold if you need a comparison, and with that band finding the success that they do you can assume that there is also more room at the table for others of this genre type. The group is on the heavy side and seems high on melody as well and fits in pretty good with the recent crop of Orange County bands who are all seeming to build their own scene over in that region. Despite their getting this reception the guys didn't let it show as being a bother and played on whether the crowd loved or hated what they heard. After their set they ended up walking right by me as they left the stage and I wished them luck on their upcoming adventures with Avenged Sevenfold (they would join onto their tour not long after this show). They sounded good to me and I would see them again if the means allowed me to do so. Now it was time for In This Moment to do their thing.
In This Moment: ITM was fresh off of their appearance on this years free Ozzfest and that Metal event most grand had followed their being a part of the "Hot Chicks Of Metal" tour with Dutch sensations Within Temptation and Italy's Lacuna Coil. This appearance tonight would find them still in relentless support of their Century Media Records debut "Beautiful Tragedy", an album that I have not stopped playing and have also kept in my music player's rotation since I had gotten it loaded onto the thing. For those unaware who have never heard In This Moment before well they are a Melodic Metalcore band and have become part of a new trend of such groups that are being fronted by a female singer. So far each of these groups has been different when compared to the others and ITM is one of the fast favorites in my book. The band is led by singer Maria Brink, a tattooed beauty who's full of fire and energy during every show that they do. She mixes up the vocals to be both brutal and at times melodic and really does the trick on songs like "Beautiful Tragedy" and "Daddy's Fallen Angel". The other founder of the group is guitarist Chris Howarth who offers up some tasty guitar riffs that are locked into place by a tight second guitar and rhythm section (care of Blake Bunzel, Jesse Landry and Jeff Fabb respectively). I have been fortunate to catch these guys a few times over the past year and on each occasion they impress me with how energetic they are and how into the music they seem to be. Brink herself is always out to work the crowd and generally has no problems getting them into gear. One could tell that the band had some fans in the audience tonight but there were still more than a few who were choosing to remain closed-minded and not really listen to the different realms of Metal that are rising steadily around them. While Melodic Metalcore might not be everyone's thing I have to give In This Moment a lot of credit for changing the overall view of it in my own as well as many others minds. I like the heaviness that they deliver and have yet to see them falter in the live sense. After every show I have seen this band talking to the fans and being willing to tell about their experiences thus far with smiles on their faces much to the delight of those they are speaking to. When they did this tonight after their slamming set I was able to find out that their next activity would be opening up for Ozzy Osbourne on his coming tour. I think that's a pretty good fit since they will be playing with Rob Zombie as well. Perhaps the fans of the Ozzman will be a little more open and receptive to their brand of Metal as they certainly deserve no less in my opinion. I look forward to seeing them again soon and expect it to be sooner than I even anticipate.
Megadeth: Megadeth, how does one really critique the accomplishments of this band? Tonight would be my first time seeing the full new lineup of the band for while the Drover Brothers have been in place for a couple of years now, it was many of the audiences first time seeing bassist James Lomenzo in the group outside of what he did in White Lion. The last time I caught him performing was with David Lee Roth sometime last year and knowing the kind of bass player he is I was very happy to see him as a part of Megadeth now. With their release of "United Abominations" I feel we are finding a Megadeth that is once again on top of their game musically and showing why they are lords of the Metal land so to speak. When they hit the stage this evening it would be like a juggernaut and there was this whole take no prisoner attitude coming off of the band that was sending the crowd over the barriers near the stage like fish jumping out of the water. Security tonight really seemed to have their hands full for this one with the crowd surfers as Mustaine and company throttled through quite the killer set of material. They would open with the energetic "Sleepwalker" from the new album and it's a great choice to start off with and from there it was a "Take No Prisoners" show as we already referenced before they delivered "Wake Up Dead". During this tune the entire audience was singing the end chorus and it just shook the walls of The Fillmore NY. Mustaine would be sure to hit a few of the tunes from the new album and by the end of the set they had delivered a total of five new songs. Since the album reminds us so much of old school Megadeth this worked well within the walls of the classic tunes that everyone in attendance was hoping to hear tonight. Their new version of "A Tout La Monde" features Cristina Scabbia of Lacuna Coil but she would not make an appearance during the show. Mustaine was on point tonight and while that might not surprise anyone it needs to be mentioned that he was not feeling all that well during the performance, but who would ever imagine a band cancelling a New York City appearance. Mustaine is definitely a trooper in my book after seeing him plow through the set despite being sick. As I watched the show I was both impressed and amazed at how well Lomenzo had locked into the vibe from the Drover Brothers. Glen is a great guitarist while Shawn a top notch drummer, and now with James on board, have become one of the tightest lineups that the group has offered their fans in years.
Having grown up in my Metal youth to old Megadeth I was really happy that they got to all the songs that I expected them to get to and even when I tried to think of something that might have been left off I was hard pressed to find anything. He didn't talk to the crowd all that much and instead let the guitar do his speaking for him. My favorites for the night were the same ones as I always have and fall to "Hangar 18", "Symphony Of Destruction" and of course "Peace Sells". From the new album my most listened to songs are "Washington Is Next" and "Sleepwalker" and judging their impact on the crowd it seems as though I was not alone in having these as my personal picks. When it was done it was done, Mustaine simply said goodnight and the crowd dissipated. A lot of energy was expended on the stage and in the crowd and most fans looked happy and still were raring to go as they exited the venue.
When it came down to it I felt that the whole night was a winning situation but I have to admit that I am growing tired of those fans who choose to give some of the opening bands a hard time. My view is that if you don't like who is starting it off for the main band that you should go to the lounge or bar area and grab a drink. There is no reason for you to ruin the fun for everyone else. The bands all work hard and don't need your nonsense when they are out to give you the best that they can. Remember that a band like Megadeth has the final say on who opens for them so if they are good enough for Mustaine, then they should certainly be good enough for you.
2. Take No Prisoners
3. Wake up Dead
4. Skin O' My Teeth
5. Gears Of War
6. She Wolf
7. In My Darkest hour
8. Hangar 18
9. Washington Is Next
10. Kick The Chair
11. A Toute La Monde
13. Reckoning Day
14. Peace Sells (But Who's Buying)
15. Never Walk Alone
16. Symphony Of Destruction
17. Holy Wars (The Punishment Due)
Official Web site: www.megadeth.com
Official Web site: www.inthismoment.com
Official Web site: www.theconfessionmusic.com