Monday, June 30, 2003 @ 2:15 PM
Ozzy Osbourne, Finger 11 and V
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REVIEW BY: Bentdogg
A 4 hour ride on my Harley, in "too damn cold to be riding" weather, got me where I had to be:
Ozzy Fuckin' Osbourne in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada!!
I must say I was hyped for this show! It was a sell-out show (the arena holds 17,000 people for Oiler's hockey, so if you add the rink surface as general admission, I would estimate 20,000 lunatics, give or take...) and everyone was going wild! I have seen the man four times (once with Sabbath) and he has yet to disappoint! I have been a huge fan for 19 years... but I must be honest with you, I was there to see Voivod that Friday night!!
I arrived just after the start time of 7:30pm, and heard the music, so I rushed down to the floor. Voivod was going hard!! I missed two songs (I think) and that is due to the injustice of Voivod opening when a band like Finger 11 definitely should have been first on the bill. Voivod are classic. To think I was listening to them 15 years ago, never dreaming of seeing them live (let alone in 2003) hearing "Ripping Headaches" as it ripped through my brain... well... at least I saw Voivod!
Unfortunately, I never heard "Ripping Headaches" but 3 new songs instead. They kicked ass! Even though they weren't off War and Pain or Rrrooaaarrr, and since I just got the new CD, can't remember the names of those songs, but trust me, they KICKED ASS!!! The crowd was sparse (the beer line-ups consumed the people who didn't realize what they were missing) but very enthusiastic! They ended their set with "Astronomy Domine"... the crowd went wild!!! Newsted thrashed along to every song, even though I found him a helluva lot more subdued than in his Metallica days! Snake was loving the whole affair -- a smile never left his face the whole time. Piggy and Away kept the momentum going... never missing a beat or wail of the strings!! I was loving it, but the set was soooo short!!
Alas, the time had come for them to leave. 30 minutes is not enough time for a pioneering metal band from back in the day to win over newbie metal fans who had never heard of them, or were just too young to appreciate them. My turn for the beer line had now begun.
Finger 11 started up shortly after I got in line and sounded not bad. I am not a fan of the band, not because I don't like them, just because I don't know too much of their music. After waiting in the never-ending beer line for what seemed an eternity, I managed to catch the last couple songs. Not bad. Very energetic to say the least.
When they got off stage, my mission for front row-center, right in front of the "Prince of Darkness" had started. Much painful pushing, shoving, elbows flying, knees grinding, sweat-filled minutes (days) later, I was where I wanted to be!! FRONT ROW CENTER!!! The man came out and gave us HELL!! Ozzy ran through so many classic Sabbath tunes (“The Wizard” will always be one of my favorites), some Ozzy tunes I never expected like "Fire in the Sky," along with the classic Ozzy staples we all could predict, but loved none-the-less!
Zakk went wild! His solo, where he played with his teeth and behind his back, kept the crowd roaring for more. Newsted was just concentrating on the tunes, nothing else... in a "zone" I guess, but played great. Ozzy kept telling the crowd, "The louder you are, the longer we'll play!" Well they played for damn near 3 hours!! That tells you how much the crowd loved them! When I would look back over the crowd, at any given time, everyone was on their feet. Even way up in the nosebleeds!!
Ozzy loved us and gave us his soul through his music. I could see it in his eyes! We loved Ozzy, and only hope he can make it back to Edmonton one more time!!! Long live Ozzy!! Thanks for a fuckin' awesome evening we won't soon forget!