Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar (SE)

Blaze Bayley

Date: 14th May, 2016
Venue: Downtown Rockbar
Tickets: Free
Promoter: Downtown Rockbar
Photos: Erika Wallberg


What can be better to do on a Saturday night than go and see a show? Perhaps go and see a free show featuring an amazing band! Yeah, this was the case that nice Saturday night - Blaze Bayley and his band played the Downtown Rockbar in Falkenberg. And by all means, the place was really packed and the spirit was really high. Long before it was gig time the front row was occupied. And it’s actually rare to see such anticipation and excitement before a live set in a bar. Of course, some 0’s were missing from the total count of visitors at Downtown Rockbar when compared to an IRON MAIDEN concert but the response and reaction was the same anyway. And for sure, it doesn’t matter if there are 100, 1000 or 10000 people in the venue when everyone is screaming at the same time.

And that was the theme of the show; the place was small but the show was big. Blaze and his band make a well-oiled live-machine, just as his old employer IRON MAIDEN. The way the show was planned, or executed perhaps is more right to say, was as any massive arena band with prearranged light-shows, moves etc... Blaze doesn’t need props to create a show though, his facial expressions and the way he cheers on the crowd for support are so vibrant. Ok, sometimes he looks completely crazy something that can become a little scary. And he has a hard and serious tone in his voice talking in between the songs, which would make even the toughest guy obey his smallest hint, then to break out in a massive smile and look crazy happy instead. And with this, how can you not but love him?

I was a little bit disappointed with the sound on BLAZE BAYLEY’s latest release “Infinite Entanglement”; the songs are really good but some of the power the songs possess is lost in the mix. This made it absolutely fantastic to get to hear show opener and title track “Infinite Entanglement” followed by “A Thousand Years” this Saturday night. I mean what a kick-off! It didn’t calm down with “Futureal” I tell you.

Something that I thought about during the show was that songs like “Kill And Destroy” and “Ten Seconds” really felt like classics. It was of course 14 and 12 years since “Tenth Dimension” and “Blood & Belief” were released, respectively, but still. Songs as new as these normally don’t feel like classics, the whole BLAZE thing feels new. But I guess, good songs are good songs and will feel ageless, regardless if they were released in the 70’s, 80’s or in the new millennium. The same can be said for “Ghost In The Machine” as well as “Silicon Messiah”.

One song that I really enjoyed was the old WOLFSBANE song, “Manhunt”; perhaps not the best song in the set, or from WOLFSBANE but it’s a party booster and easy (oh, well tongue twister fast) to sing along to. The fun thing was that this song made it really easy to sort out the younger fans in the crowd, while I and a few others went nuts, continued in the same frenzy, a few ones in the front looked a little lost. By all means, it’s not that you stumble over WOLFSBANE records in the shops these days.

A strong set of course helps a show as it does seeing Blaze and the band having a lot of fun together. The fights between Blaze and guitar player Chris Appleton for the spotlight (for fun of course) made the whole thing very joyful to watch. The main set closed with “Fear Of The Dark” and “Man On The Edge”. And anyone who’s ever attended an IRON MAIDEN show knows that “Fear Of The Dark” is a great thing to experience live. Again, it doesn’t matter what size the crowd is when everyone sings, the effect is the same, perhaps even better in a small place. “Man On The Edge” is my favorite IRON MAIDEN song from the Blaze era, so it’s always a treat to hear that one live.

I start to run out of superlatives to describe the show. Of course, I’m a big fan on Blaze’s music and I’ve always been. Also, he’s always been good live but this show felt more inspired than the last few times I saw him play. It’s fascinating how hard he works, this tour is really massive and I really hope it pays off. Even if I love seeing big bands in small places it should be more of a special treatment than standard to see BLAZE BAYLEY in a place like Downtown Rockbar.

BLAZE BAYLEY setlist:

01. “Infinite Entanglement”
02. “A Thousand Years”
03. “Futureal”
04. “Human”
05. “Kill And Destroy”
06. “Identity”
07. “Stars Are Burning”
08. “Ten Seconds”
09. “Calling You Home”
10. “Stare At The Sun”
11. “Virus”
12. “Ghost In The Machine”
13. “Silicon Messiah”
14. “Man Hunt”
15. “Fear Of The Dark”
16. “Man On The Edge”
17. “Como Estais Amigos”
18. “Dark Energy 256”

BLAZE BAYLEY

Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)
Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)
Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Blaze Bayley @ Downtown Rockbar, Falkenberg (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)

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