Thoughts ridden by kash Mar 31, 2007

Maiden !! Maiden !! Part 2

Thought i would never tell you anything after the lights went out ??

Dont worry.. here it is.

Thoughts were flying high as I stood there in anticipation. I was wondering whether the Maiden was going to fly in on to the ground in a helicopter or maybe they would appear out of the crowd itself. It would be so exciting if that happened. As i stood there riding such thoughts, suddenly the lights went out. And chants of the “Maiden” started growing louder every second. And out of nowhere, the lights came on again with more intensity than before and suddenly Iron Maiden was on the stage. Maiden always makes entries in this way. They appeared in the same manner in the Rock in Rio concert. It was so sudden that it took a moment to realize that the rock band that I have idolized for a long time were finally on the stage. I could not believe I was so close to Iron Maiden. We had waited for 4 hours amongst the crowd without water or food to see them perform on the stage and here they were jsut a few meters away from me.

All their numbers are so famous that if they played all famous numbers then they would probably end up playing for the whole night and still not finish. Iron Maiden is basically on the promotional tour of their new album A Matter of Life and Death. So they were expected to play the latest songs at the concert. They sung Reincarnation of Benjamin, the most famous number from the latest album. From the older ones, they sung Run to Hills, Fear of the Dark, Hallowed be thy Name, The Trooper etc. They had the crowd singing along with them all throughout the night. The crowd shouted out loud at the start of every song. Most of the songs were recognized within 3 seconds from the beginning. It was quite surprising to know that most of the people remembered the lyrics of almost all the songs that were sung by Maiden. Rock songs usually contain so much music that often the vocals are difficult to understand especially to many of the Indians who are not that fluent or comfortable with English. If you are a regular listener, then you might be able to discern most of the lyrics from the song. But forget that if you are in a Maiden concert. There is so much noise and singing along with the band, that you would probably be hearing the lyrics more clearly from the person beside you rather than Bruce.

We were shouting out so loud along with every song that I had to suck on Strepsils almost every hour. As abruptly it had started, they stopped playing! Maiden chants started again from the crowd. For a moment i thought the concert was over. It had been hardly an hour with Hallowed be thy Name and Fear of the Dark still to go ! But thankfully it was just a break. And bang ! Just as abruptly as they had stopped playing they were back on the stage and this time it was far better than the first half. One of the songs featured a fake military tank being brought on the stage. Also the beast on stilts moved around on the stage. The crowd once again was on its toes to watch the props. Also Iron Maiden changed the screens behind them for every song. Each song is associated with a particular poster and what depicted on it. The crowd also recognized the song even before they started playing by just looking at the poster. So you could imagine how much they were into Iron Maiden !!

It was of course going to end some time. So it did. But the crowd still anticipated that they again had gone in for a break but it had ended. The electrifying concert was finally over. I and my room mate had been planning for the concert for over a month. It was worth all the effort and waiting. I christened Maiden as the Gods of Rock on that day!! There was no way something could be more stimulating than this!! Maiden is certainly the God of Rock.

All was worth it. Every single rupee spent was worth it. I and my friends walked about 4 kms before we found a rick to go back home. We ate at a restaurant not so good with the food but nevertheless satisfied our hunger. My neck ached with the amount of head banging that i had done but it was worth all the pains to see Maiden live in concert. It comes once in a lifetime and I was there to form a memory of it in my mind.

Thoughts ridden by kash

Maiden !! Maiden !! Part 1

Ever had a very excited feeling inside your body which is waiting to come out no matter what? It seldom happens with the dreary life that many people lead nowadays! Excitement always causes a person to secrete more and more adrenaline into the body providing the surge of energy that one requires! And believe me, that was what had happened to me while I was standing on the Palace Grounds in Bangalore amongst a stupendous crown rumored to be close to 20000 in number. All bodies on grounds were filled with enough adrenaline to run a marathon! The atmosphere was tingling with excitement waiting for the arrival of Iron Maiden band.

Earlier, on my way to Bangalore by bus, I was accompanied by my room mate and of course there were a score of Maiden fans on the bus too. We did not discuss Maiden on the bus but yeah I was up almost half the night revising the Maiden songs! The fever had had me in its grip!! JJ. Those who are hard core rock fans and those who understand rock would probably understand why people are so crazy about rock concerts. We reached Bangalore in the morning. The show did not start till 5:00 in the evening. So to cut the time, we went off to Brigade road. The fever had also gripped the city. Black t-shirts were seen with maiden prints everywhere. It was like Bangy had gone into mad frenzy about wearing black Maiden t-shirts. We suddenly realize the density of the crowd expected to turn up.

We reached the concert grounds at about 5:00 having left early to beat the traffic which we obviously could not because it’s the Maiden concert!!! First time in India. Bruce Dickinson, the all time favorite vocalist, was coming with the band. Iron Maiden had flown in the entire stage to India. For the record, a similar concert in Rio de Jaineiro, Brazil had over 2 lakh people attending the show. Freaky? Its not! It’s exciting.

Nevertheless, we were right there in the 15th row from the stage waiting for Maiden to arrive. The opening act was performed by the winners of Campus Rock Idols whose finals were held here in Pune. Next came the famous Indian rock band Parikrama to increase the tempo of excitement. With known numbers like But it rained, they really set the atmosphere for the grand finale. Next came Laren Harris, a big letdown. She did not rock at all but well all was acceptable since Maiden was going to come next.

You would not believe the haze that the cigarette smoke was creating. It is often seen that rock concerts attract a lot of smokers and dopers. But it is not that they are attracted to these concerts. Usually rock idols are heavy smokers, drinkers and dopers which most of the times cause the fans to become one too. For your information, the lead vocalist of System of a Down ( rock bands always have weird names !! J ) spends almost $200 in a day on dope. The person standing next to me was clearing in ecstasy after having smoked away a lot of grass!! And abuses are like the second word that comes out of the mouth while you are there. Interestingly, it was worth noticing that Maiden too uttered a lot of abuses but all is uncensored and allowed since it is Maiden. Imagine one of us uttering any such words in public! Bang!! Indian culture protectionists would appear out of thin air and take you off the stage and file a PIL and whatever that is possible to make you realize that you have made a “great” mistake and a mockery on the “civilized” Indian culture.

Everyone was trying to make some or the other excuses to go one line further to watch Maiden up close. “My friends are standing in the front” or “My girlfriend is shorter in height to be able to see from behind you” were some of the reasons that were heard. Also one more thing that we came to know which was funny was the fact that the train which had arrived that morning ( 17th March by the way ) , was almost filled with fans wearing black t-shirts. The passengers were literally frightened out of their wits seeing the black colors everywhere ( also the color of conspiracy and unknown ).

And suddenly the lights went out !!!