Iron Maiden and Megadeth - San Manuel Amphitheater - September 13, 2013
Iron Maiden, Megadeth, and others
Nick Birtwistle Iron Maiden vocalist Bruce Dickinson and bassist Steve Harris
San Manuel Amphitheater
September 13, 2013
Better Than: Commemorating the day by playing the shitty NES game, Friday The 13th.
Some of our fondest live metal memories have occurred in basements, garages, and even sushi restaurants. But for our money, there is still no greater thrill than 35,000+ screaming fans singing along with Iron Maiden songs while pyro explodes, the giant Eddie monster stalks the band on stage, and Bruce Dickinson empties the fountain of youth with a manic performance.
As soon as gates opened on Friday at San Manuel Ampitheater, the crowd was ready to celebrate metal. Local thrash upstarts Warbringer and '80s Jersey thrashers Overkill warmed up the crowd and got those looking for early pit action going, despite being ignominiously placed on a side-concourse stage next to the entrance to the men's restrooms.
Unfamiliar to most of the crowd, Swedish epic power-metal outfit Sabaton made some new fans thanks to their over-the-top symphonic sounds and the boundless energy of singer Joakim Broden, who seemed determined to win over the audience no matter what.
Up next was longtime Bay Area thrashers Testament. There wasn't much in the way of showmanship, but this band has always been less about spectacle, and more about bringing solid thrash backed with strong musicianship. Chuck Billy's vocals were as ferocious as ever. Guitarist Alex Snolnick and drummer Gene Hoglan brought the incredible-yet-accessible musicianship that has made the group stand out among their peers throughout their 25-year career.
The crowd was primed throughout the afternoon, but the moment Anthrax took the stage was when the moshers really started to let loose. Opening with "Caught In A Mosh," the New York metal icons blazed through a 45-minute, all killer-no filler set. They dedicated "In The End" to the memories of Ronnie James Dio and Dimebag Darrell, covering their Anthrax-branded scrims with paintings of the fallen metal icons.
Jason Roche Anthrax pay tribute to Ronnie James Dio and Dimebag Darrell
Megadeth took the stage next.