Friday, February 7, 2003 @ 12:52 AM
Rob Halford & Co. Live at the
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2 tickets to Halford: $70
Valet parking: $15
Drinks at the show: $50
Halford not canceling the gig and performing in the US: PRICELESS
Thank God for his VISA!
Yes, after much confusion and speculation, Rob Halford was able to secure his immigration papers in the nick of time for his rescheduled New Years gigs in Vegas and Southern California! Sweet justice!
Alright, I’m going to tell you right off the bat that the sound fucking sucked that evening in the Sunset Strip House of Blues. At least Halford wasn’t getting the same nasty reverb that Testament was before them. The lighting was also less than stellar, but maybe I only noticed because I was trying to photo the band in the dark!
Nonetheless, Halford didn’t seem phased and delivered all the goods! They kicked things off with the classic fist pumper, “Painkiller.” Man, that’s the way to get things cranking in full force! I would’ve sworn they’d kick it off with “Crucible,” but much to my surprise, they never even performed it! Then they continued on with the Judas Priest tracks, “Freewheel Burning” and “Jawbreaker.” Some people were surprised that Halford would start off his set with one Priest track after the other, but I understand that the band didn’t have much, if any, time for rehearsals, so the stuck to what they knew well.
I always feel sorry for bands who play gigs in Los Angeles. I don’t know if it’s because we’re all just ‘too cool’ to rock out or what, but this evening was no exception. Even through Rob Halford and Co. were on fire and nailing each song to perfection, the crowd seemed fairly wooden, with exception of the front-row die-hards. That, and the aforementioned muddied sound and dull lighting made for a somewhat lackluster evening, much to my dismay. No wonder Halford is playing only 4 gigs here before bolting off the Japan for a plethora of performances!
Nonetheless, I was immensely appreciative of their hard-fought battle to be here in the US, and I certainly enjoyed myself! They definitely gave 110%, despite the venue's flaws. The set list wasn’t exactly what I’d hope for (screw the Priest songs, and take ‘em all from Resurrection and Crucible!) but again, I understand that rehearsal time was a factor in this. So, that’s cool! But, I could have done without “Cyberworld.” That song makes me cringe for some reason! But “Golgotha,” “Ressurection” and “Made In Hell” smoked! Hope someday I get to catch a set where Bruce Dickinson jumps on stage for “The One You Love To Hate!” Yeah, baby!
All in all, Halford is Halford. I mean, what can you really say. Rob IS the Metal God!
Here’s what I believe to be the setlist! (If you found a handwritten setlist on the floor of the HOB… It’s mine! Can you crosscheck this for me? LOL)
Made in Hell
Handing Out Bullets
Hearts Of Darkness
Into The Pit
Nailed To The Gun
Riding On The Wind
Breaking The Law
Living After Midnight
I also understand there was to be a fanclub Meet & Greet there that night that never happened… If you want more info from Halford’s manager, John Baxter, click HERE.