Meeting the Prince of Darkness … almost

norockIf you say Ozzy or Black Sabbath in many parts of the Southern States, especially in the 70’s and 80’s, you could be certain you would experience a exorcist ritual first hand. ¬†It was labeled the anti-Christ, Devil’s spawn or in short Prince of Darkness.

I grew up with Sabbath, but had never had a chance to witness their awesome show, so it was only natural that when they kicked off their 2014 Reunion World Tour in Brooklyn, that I would participate … so I bought a couple of tickets ūüôā

Given I had suffered through a few opera concerts (I’m under the thumb), it was only appropriate that my lovely wife would sacrifice herself to a night with me, 18000 fans and the dove biting master himself. ¬†She wasn’t too impressed and was over the moon when our super baby sitter cancelled. ¬†The relief on my wife’s face was priceless. ¬†She regained full colour again and her step suddenly became a gliding posture.

So, I volunteered a good colleague and friend, who I suspect, was pretty dubious about the Black Sabbath experience, somewhat expecting to be in the company of the local biker gang, leather clad women and pee infested stadium. ¬†To be fair, that was the scene 25 years ago, but all the fans are older and wiser … I think!

We arrived at the stadium and slowly made our way to entrance, where a huge police presence might have suggested that this could be an interesting evening. ¬†I was padded down by an oversized bald security guard, clearly fresh out of the TSA academy, and getting familiarised with his plastic gloves and certain parts of my anatomy. ¬†As I looked over at my friend, he was getting a much more gentle pad down by a fairly attractive officer – why? ¬†what is wrong with this World? where’s the justice in that?

As I left my booth, walking a little uncomfortable, we quickly got to the elevator to the top floor. ¬†For people not familiar with concerts and assuming the top floor means awesome expensive tickets, then I’m sorry to disappoint. ¬†It’s cheap-ass tickets as far from stage as possible – literally.

However, our seats were actually excellent and we had a perfect view of the stage, at the other end, and the roadie was about an inch tall.  Thanks to the dark prince who had invested in a 500 inch screen.

The interesting part of the evening was the audience. ¬†Every Sabbath fan from every corner of New York / New Jersey had found their way to the Barclay Stadium, and many of them still stuck in the late 70’s. ¬†Many of them were wearing their first heavy metal t-shirt (from the 70’s), had oversized goatee and long hair. ¬†The only difference was 25 years older, 50-60 lbs heavier, long hair but bald on top and looking Orange Chopper angry. ¬†Oh, and carrying 2 glasses of beer of course.

The scary bit was the women.  These once awesome beauties had also had an encounter with Mother Nature, gaining several lbs but had still managed to squeeze into spray on leather pans, ripped t-shirts revealing their hanging stretched cleavage and grey/blond hair.  Listen, after a few of glasses of beer, they looked amazing again!

Satan, laughing, spreads his wings...Oh lord, yeah!

My ears were suddenly gripped by what sounded like my three-year old pulling the neighbour’s cat’s tail, while banging on large carnage bins. ¬†There could be no doubt, it was the bloody warm-up band. ¬†I had to leave the arena and seek refuge by the bar for the next 450 minutes. ¬†I have not witnessed such horror since seeing pictures of Daniel O’Donnell in his swim suit on the frontage of the Evening Herald.

Just like witches at black masses

Then silence fell upon the arena and the famous sirens blared.  The Prince had arrived!

The grows went abe-shit.  Grow men crying.  Grown men headlining like there was no tomorrow.  Joints being lit up.  Beers thrown around.  Roars from all corners.  THEN HE EMERGED!

SHOW ME YOUR FUCKIN’ HANDS – I CAN’T HEAR YOU!! ¬†(Ozzy’s words of course)

The next 78 minutes was packed with awesome guitar riffs, insane drumming, bass solos and the unmistakably voice of the Devil worshipping overlord.  Even the videos flickering across the screen were dangerously tantalising with naked women, weird rituals and other strange yet funny moments of history.

tommy-clufetosIn the middle of the show, the older members of the band needed a breather, so the much younger drummed had his 9 minutes of super amazing utterly insane moment drum solo. ¬†Tommy Clufetos, who has strong¬†resemblance to the Animal from the Muppet Show, spent close to 10 minutes beating the living daylights out of the drums. ¬†It was probably the best solo I’ve seen in decades.

Throughout the concert I looked over at my friend, who at the early parts of the evening looked a little misplaced and concerned.  However, his evil twin must have taken over as he was now nodding along to the tunes and tapping his hand on his lap.  He was in the zone!

Can he walk at all, Or if he moves will he fall?

Ozzy himself was showing some interesting moves throughout the evening, never venturing too far away from the microphone stand, and walking like a drunk zombie across the stage. ¬†When singing his voice was clear, but when talking I had no clue was he was saying. ¬†It was amazing to see a legend and I’m delighted I had the opportunity before he can’t perform any longer.

Another item ticked off on my bucket list!

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