Utilita Arena, Birmingham
Tuesday 4th July 2023
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IRON MAIDEN – BIRMINGHAM – LIVE REVIEW
The metalheads have taken over Birmingham with battlejackets visable on every street corner. Yes, the mighty Iron Maiden are in town and a sold out Utilita Arena is braced for a theatrical evening of fun with a band currently firing on all cylinders.
The legendary group are here as part of their aptly titled ‘The Future Past’ Tour which sees them focus on material from their latest studio release, ‘Senjutsu’ and their 1986 sixth album ‘Somewhere In Time’.
Up first however are openers Lord of the Lost, fresh from the indignity of finishing last at this year’s Eurovision. Given the reputation of Maiden fans to be rather harsh on their support acts, and the German groups recent past, we were concerned that Lord of the Lost would go down like a certain variety of balloon!
That thankfully isn’t the case though as they deliver a polished yet honest performance which is well received by the waiting masses. The band are able to show that they possess quality with substance and some great songs, which is probably why Eurovision fans weren’t interested! If that experience was a disappointment, this one is a big success for the band.
Soon enough those familiar strains of UFO’s ‘Doctor Doctor’ start to fill the arena and the atmosphere kicks up a few dozen notches. With an updated stage show complementing a setlist full of rarer heard fan favourites it doesn’t take long for the band to suck you right in.
WATCH ‘Stranger in a Strange land’ ON YOUTUBE
Within moments Iron Maiden have the audience in the palm of their collective hand as they lead them back and forth from new tracks like ‘The Writing on the Wall’ to deep cuts like ‘Stranger in a Strange Land’ and classics such as ‘Can I Play With Madness’!
With multiple appearances from Eddie plus all the usual trimmings this show is Maiden at their very best. The carefully curated setlist makes this a unique opportunity for the diehards but also a fine example of what the band do for any newcomers. This is perhaps best summed up by the final main set run of ‘Heaven Can Wait’, ‘Alexander the Great’, ‘Fear of the Dark’ and ‘Iron Maiden’.
By the time ‘The Trooper’ and ‘Wasted Years’ close out the evening, Maiden have one again shown themselves the masters of their craft. Those metalheads then head back out into the Birmingham night filled with glorious, dramatic metal!
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