it all started with the album -S&M..this is when I got introduced to Metallica and then on, I was totally hooked to their metal mania.Been listening to them since long and every time there was talk of a rock show in Bangalore, I always longed for Metallica to drop in..did not see that happen for quite some time..during this time, Scorpions decided to come to B’lore, now that got me excited and I loved their show..but I still looked forward for Metallica…Went to Iron Maiden show too when they dropped in..this was better than Scorpions but was it the ‘One’? naah..not yet. I then quite consoled myself that the boys would not come to India..
Went to US a few times on assignments and guess what, I started looking around for their shows in US..damn..I couldn’t find any there too..Wonder why?
cut to mid 2011 and news of F1 Grand Prix in India pops up and I decided to go to the race in Noida. Now that was an event I couldn’t miss being an ardent fan of F1. slowly news creeps in that Metallica is playing in F1 Rocks in Noida..aasum aasum aasum.!! F1 and Metallica..Happening for the 1st time in India..can I ask for more? hmm..actually yes..I couldn’t foresee myself going to a Rock show without my buddies. now, were these guys keen on coming to F1? not really. Now going to F1 is a big deal..travel, accomodation, leaves etc. Now slowly the plan of going to F1 started to fizzle out. All hopes were not lost out. Metallica was still going to play in B’lore on the 30th Oct. But this date was already marked up on my calendar for the F1 race !! So I went ahead and made an audacious plan..see the race and then go to the concert which would start at 4.00pm but then Metallica was going to play only at 7.30pm onwards.
Later I realized many more friends are going too but then, their plan was messing with mine.they were to leave home by 12.30 to be in the lines by 1.00 pm.why so soon? well, just to be ahead in that freakin’ crowd of 25,000 that was set to be at the show. What do I do? what about F1? thinking time..F1 -happens every year.Metallica- probably not gonna happen ever again in India. this was logical thinking eh. I ditched F1 and decided to go to the show at 1.00 pm to get ahead of the crowd.phew, that was kinda big decision to make.
On D-Day, with some deft planning, we reached the venue at 1.00pm.
1st part of the plan handled well but then we were only greeted by a huge queue to enter the Palace grounds campus..then came the “Houston we have a problem “ moment. I had 2 extra tickets and I had get rid of them. Got out of the line and rushed towards the main gate with the hope of convincing the gate-keeper/pseudo Usher to let me in So I could sell my extra tickets..but my convincing skills weren’t working..just then, a voice from behind said “ excuse me, where do I buy tickets ?” me “aah..right here” and flashed my tickets and then, within the next 5 seconds, the tickets were sold !! what a magic ! I did not make extra money although I could.after this, I just managed to sneak into the gates only to realize that one from our group had to get his online tickets from the Counter at the Venue. This is the moment where relying on technology is such a PIA. The lines for this counter were barely moving. Mismanagement. This was the time when the crowd actually started moving into the next line towards the concert area and here we were waiting for our Buddy to get his tickets.
1 hr and he had barely moved and that’s when we decided to move on.
move we did but what was in front of us was a humongous crowdtrying to get through a small
2 ft wide barricaded passage. after this and yet another set of lines, we finally reached our location..with us being a lil early, we managed to get close to the stage..not as close as we’d have wanted to.
Good timing then eh!
After a lil while, some phirang from the entourage started to blabber away stuff most people ignored.
“We are concerned about security yadda yadda yadda..” we were least interested and barely noticed him go and the opening bands start up! 2 bands , Bangalore Band -Inner Sanctum and Delhi band – Guillotine did the opening acts..they were nice but then, they were opening for Metallica ..so the expectations were sky high and therefore, the crowds wished for them to finish up real quick.
Finish they did but then, after a long wait came the Scottish Band Biffy Clyro. They’re a good band,they played some good tracks and they were in perfect form for the show..but that’s all that you’ll see me say about them coz what followed was the most important part of the evening.In fact, I’d never known them before this event.
and then, at precisely 8.00pm, the lights went out and along with the video came the track ‘Ecstasy of Gold’ – OST from ‘Good,Bad and Ugly’. This was Euphoric as it noted the start of the show which we’d all been waiting for..the crowd went ballistic at this stage. That’s it ! Finally I am at a Metallica concert and at B’lore to top it..
The energy of the 25,000 strong crowd sure did take the quartet of James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammet and Roberto Trujillo by surprise. I’m sure this was the crowd they never expected. This was evident on the surprised look on James’s face when the crowd was busy humming the lyrics like a sing-along.
Kirk was just awesome at the guitar so was Roberto but then, what left me amazed was the fast double bass hitting Lars.Truly worth seeing live. The energy in these guys makes you feel that they never grow old. especially Lars.
Kirk’s solo faded superfluously into ‘nothing else matters’. ‘Fade to black’ took me by surprise but a welcome surprise at that.
The setlist contained mostly classics with only 2 tracks from the album ‘Death Magnetic’.
1. Creeping Death
2. For Whom the Bell Tolls
4. Ride the Lightning
5. Fade to Black
7. The Memory Remains
8. Welcome Home (Sanitarium)
9. Sad But True
10. All Nightmare Long
12. Master of Puppets
14. Nothing Else Matters
15. Enter Sandman
16. Am I Evil?
18. Seek & Destroy
Greedy me wished for 2 more of their classics-‘Wherever I may roam’ and ‘ Unforgiven’. Nevertheless, I hope Lars’s promise of returning to Bangalore holds good and they do come back again.
This entire set ran from 8.00 pm till about 10.20pm which was the best time I’ve ever spent in a concert. The fireworks added visual drama to the concert.
With this done, all other concerts will only be add-ons to my list.
One item from my bucket list- Ticked.