Damn, damn, fuck, bugger, shit, balls! 2007 hasn't even arrived and already there are metal crises! They are:
- Too many good gigs and too little money/time off work
- Neck braces are in short supply for the forthcoming metal mayhem
- Mastodon and Saxon are playing in Belfast on the same night....
Both gigs are events worth looking forward to, but for very different reasons. Saxon are part of metal's heritage; living fossils they may be, but still holding a vital part in the pantheon of metal gods. They may not have scaled the heights of their NWOBHM contemporaries, but their influence spread far and wide; hell even Metallica covered them and name checked them. Belfastmetalheads last saw them back in the early 80s - on the day that a maths 'o' level was being sat (for younger readers 'o' levels were GCSEs before there were GCSEs, only they were harder and meant you had to study for them not complete coursework that mummy and daddy help with and teacher adds comments to help you with)
Saxon played at Belfast's Maysfield Leisure Centre that night and was a damn fine gig, even if at times it strayed into Greatest Hits territory. Given that the hits consisted of tracks like Wheels of Steel, Denim and Leather and 747: Strangers in the Night all was forgiven.
Mastodon, on the other hand are new, exciting and holding the prog metal flag aloft, proud and confident in their abilities and oozing with contemporary licks, astounding talent and impish imagery. Not for nothing did Metal Hamster, sorry Hammer, declare Blood Mountain the best platter of steely metal content of 2007.
The only way I can think to resolve this metallic quandry is...Mastodon t come on stage at the Mandella Hall at about 8(ish), conclude at 10(ish), then we grab band members and all head in an overloaded taxi to see Saxon coming on stage about 10:30(ish) for a two hour set...then off to the Rotterdam :)
Now who has the phone numbers of the two sets of tour managers!