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Iron Maiden brought its blockbuster Legacy of the Beast Tour to Northern California this week, holding court for their passionate fans on Sept. 9 at Golden One Center in Sacramento and then Sept. 10 at Oakland Arena.
Here are some of the moments/elements that made the Oakland show so memorable
Bruce Dickinson’s voice
He’s one of the powerful vocalists in heavy metal history — perhaps even tied with Ronnie James Dio for first place on that list. And he’s still going strong in 2019, rolling through a 16-song set list that opened with a run through “Aces High,” “Where Eagles Dare” and “2 Minutes to Midnight.”
Dickinson’s outspoken nature
He’s not shy of giving his opinion, even if might not be popular with some of his fans. In Oakland, for example, he chastised the crowd about the dangers of smoking weed — not just once, but twice.
“”I know what that (marijuana) does to your mind,” he said. “And it’s not good.”
The three guitar attack
Most bands are lucky to have one terrific guitarist. Maiden, on the other hand, has three — Dave Murray, Adrian Smith and Janick Gers, who combined forces in amazing ways on such songs as “The Trooper” and “Aces High” in Oakland.
The special effects
There were so many cool props and effects in the show, including a full-size Supermarine Spitfire — a British fighter plane used in World War II — that flew above the band members’ heads during the concert opener of “Aces HIgh.”
As any Hot Topic shopper will tell you, nobody does merch quite like Iron Maiden. The band was selling 10 different $45 shirts (plus one long-sleeve for $75) at the merchandise booth in Oakland. And there were probably a number of these fans who needed to have all of them.
“Run to the Hills”
There are many worthy contenders for the title of greatest metal song of all time. But none of them are better than this anthem, which closed the show.
The set list
It was mostly focused on older fan favorites, with only two of the selections hailing from this century. Here’s what they played, based on my notes and information from setlist.fm:
1, “Aces High”
2, “Where Eagles Dare”
3, “2 Minutes to Midnight”
4, “The Clansman”
5, “The Trooper”
7, “For the Greater Good of God”
8, “The Wicker Man”
9, “Sign of the Cross”
10, “Flight of Icarus”
11, “Fear of the Dark”
12, “The Number of the Beast”
13, “Iron Maiden”
14, “The Evil That Men Do”
15, “Hallowed Be Thy Name”
16, “Run to the Hills”
Iron Maiden in Oakland: 7 things we’ll remember about the show