Manowar @ O2 Academy Brixton, London, (UK), November 5th, 2011
Being at a Manowar concert does not mean that you’re there out of curiosity, but rather that you’re a diehard fan of the band. There always are a few exceptions but that’s the case most of the time.
Having already seen 2 out of 3 Greek Manowar shows in
this year, I was getting ready for another live blast of epic proportions from the Kings. The Greek shows were by far some of the best I’ve seen in my life and certainly among the best performances a metal band can give. Thessaloniki
Arriving at the venue I had this feeling of warmth inside of me, because I knew I was going to see something more than just “a band”, something way more important for me. The fans were already gathering up and I met a lot of crazy people who came from all around the world there.
Poland, Spain, Italy, , etc. Greece
My disappointment started as soon as I entered the venue. The doors opened at 19:00 and the band didn’t get on stage until 21:00. So we had a 2 hour wait in front of us which easily kills part of your joy for being there. Then I heard that the band was going to do… a 20 minute break? I didn’t believe it until I saw it happen. The venue clearly stated that the band was going to play from 21:00 until 23:00 so the total duration was well below 2 hours (Nothing like the 2 ½ hour Greek shows). The ticket price was much higher as well.
Finally it was time for the gig to begin and I tried to forget every bad moment until that time. Manowar was on stage and the glory of the “Battle Hymns” record unfolded in front of us almost in its entirety. I’m saying almost because “William’s Tale” was not included for some reason and I didn’t like that "small neglection". Karl’s solo followed and then “Brothers Of Metal” and an amazing “Hail To England” ended the first part of the show. The venue was really good, and the acoustics were good also, but the drums were horrible. That’s because Donnie is using a drum trigger which combined with the new Manowar audio system, makes the sound from deafening (in a bad way) to unbearable. I hope that he reconsiders this choice because it ruins some parts of the songs. Eric is something over awesome for another time. He’s pushing 60 and his vocals are still extreme! After the 20 minute break it was time for and “Hand Of Doom”, “Call To Arms” and “Thunder In The Sky” were starting to warm us up again. Generally the crowd didn’t react much, except certain groups of people, but it was “Hail And Kill” time and everybody got crazy again. A bass solo by Joey followed which was a mixture of 3 Manowar bass solos and many notes were missing. I’d rather hear some more old hymns instead to be honest. The first notes of “Warriors Of The World” were heard and everyone started singing passionately. It’s already a Manowar classic by now. “Kings Of Metal” followed and the show ended with “Black Wind, Fire & Steel”. The band left in a hurry and a roadie got up with a very long speech, telling us that we should buy official Manowar merchandise, and scream “FUCK YOU!” at the merchant outside the venue selling false merchandise and to harass him in general. And sadly there were people who did it.
After the gig I visited the official merchandise bench just to be surprised at the prices. I guess the people there must think that a Manowar t-shirt is the most important thing given to man after the discovery of fire.
So, although I didn’t like the big lack of classics like “Sign Of The Hammer”, “Thor”, “Heart Of Steel” which were played on the first leg of the tour, the wait before the show and during (the 20 minute break), the overall duration which was much less than 2 hours, the drum trigger and the lecture from the roadie at the end, overally this concert would satisfy the average Manowar fan, even if it wasn’t one of their best performances, and personally I’d see them again anytime. It was nothing like the Greek shows but it was more than satisfactory.
02. Death Tone
03. Metal Daze
04. Fast Taker
05. Shell Shock
06. Dark Avenger
07. Sun Of Death (Guitar Solo)
09. Brothers Of Metal Pt.1
10. Hail To
11. Hand Of Doom
12. Call To Arms
13. Thunder In The Sky
14. Hail And Kill
15. Bass Solo
16. Warriors Of The World United
17. Kings Of Metal
18. Black Wind, Fire & Steel
19. Army Of The Dead (outro)