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Dave Mustaine's Smaller Gigantour 2008 Returns Strongly

Photo of Children of Bodom

Band Photo: Children of Bodom (?)

The Bell Center is a pretty good venue in terms of size and sound quality, but for those of us who weren’t able to buy ground tickets before they sold out, the seats were a bit lame. I don’t want to complain, but the bands were really far away – you try headbanging from the stands with five inches of standing room without bashing into the people standing nearly on top of you.

On the other hand, the people-watching in the large arena was excellent, particularly because Megadeth tends to draw metal fans as well as metalheads. By this, I refer to the hordes of young teenage boys flocking to the over-priced merchandise stands to don $40 Megadeth tees as their girlfriends went about in whatever Hot Topic is peddling to the angsty-girl demographic these days. On the opposite end of the spectrum, overweight middle-aged men guzzled down expensive beer and sat in their seats looking bewildered until Megadeth came on. Before I become too disparaging of the crowd, however, I am compelled to note that the enormous pit where people are typically embroiled in hockey battling looked like a great deal of fun from where I was sitting.

Anyhow, I’m ashamed to report that I missed the bulk of High On Fire’s set, as apparently the show started right on time or a bit early. The last couple of songs were excellent though, vastly different from the bands they were accompanying, yet a fine performance of their characteristic stoner metal, sticking primarily with “Death Is This Communion.”

Job For A Cowboy was mediocre. Obviously, fans will disagree, but my complete boredom with this band prompted me to do laps around the stadium and buy a ten dollar beer, so that should convey my level of appreciation for deathcore. I appreciate that they were trying to put forth their own style of brutality, yet it came across as very misdirected and mainly failed to impress.

Then, mercifully, Children Of Bodom appeared and riled up the masses with their raw Finnish metal, taking the stage by loading the “Sixpounder.” Alexi Laiho carried the energy of the band, leaping about and appropriately selecting those songs which would enable him to be constantly swearing, like “Lil’ Bloodred Riding Hood” and “Hate Me.”

“Living Dead Beat” was an obligatory Bodom anthem, giving Janne Warman and his keys a little more spotlight, and Laiho made another great choice to get “In Your Face” from the “Are You Dead Yet?” beats that launch fans back to the Hate Crew days. “Angels Don’t Kill” was absolutely great live, as it always is, breaking up the middle of the performance nicely.

A good portion of their set was allotted towards publicizing the new album, as tracks like “Blooddrunk” and “Hellhounds On My Trail” made an appearance. Granted, I would opine that a perfect Bodom concert would consist of “Hate Crew Deathroll,” “Follow The Reaper” and little else, but from a more open-minded perspective, they played across the spectrum decently enough. The older stuff was definitely kicked aside for the most part due to the new material and shortness of their set, however. “Touch Like Angel Of Death” and “Done With Everything, Die For Nothing” worked pretty well, though, admittedly.

In Flames was surprisingly excellent considering I don’t much appreciate their newer material; they are still quite the band to make you forgot your problems and suck you into their performance. Of course, crazy colored lights and strobe lights pierced the darkness during their set, and they spent their time wisely – on their music, as fans know that Anders Fridén tends to get a little wordy when he performs.

“Cloud Connected” started the set most satisfyingly, but began to illustrate In Flames’ technique of pulling one song from each major album to leave lots of room for “A Sense Of Purpose” and “Come Clarity”. “Graveland” went out to the Jester-heads, surprisingly enough, but “Whoracle” was left lamentably untouched. The entire show was peppered with tracks reminiscent of the “Come Clarity” tour, like “Leeches” and “Take This Life”. “Come Clarity” itself got a really stunning reception, as the lights dimmed down to a purple haze and a sea of lighters provided a candlelit gloom to the stadium. Anders was quite touched by this lovely reception of the song, and Montreal metalheads were also kind to “Only For The Weak”, jumping high into the air, Wacken-style. Most older fans will be disappointed to hear that this was the only visitation upon “Clayman,” however.

Peter Iwers absolutely rocked the Bell Center with his bass during the “The Mirror’s Truth” and Anders belted out his emotionally-charged lyrics. As the set drew on, In Flames performed the necessary “Quiet Place”, and anyone with a neck was greeting that fantastic song with all their might. “Soundtrack To Your Escape” actually did not get much play, though, considering its relative newness. I’m less certain about the other “Sense Of Purpose” tracks that the group insisted on playing, but would hazard guesses at “Sober And Irrelevant” and “Move Through Me.”

It should be said that when both In Flames and Children Of Bodom played material from their newest albums, crowd participation dropped tenfold. Whether this is due to the crowd’s unfamiliarity with the music or a decline in quality is anybody’s guess. For the most part, people just stood around and listened to the tracks from “A Sense Of Purpose”, but “Blooddrunk” songs got a slightly better reception, being of a faster tempo.

Megadeth delivered up the classics in swift succession, interspersed with the newer material. In fact, the setlist was a bit odd in that it encompassed very little of the middle of their career, concentrating upon the first several albums and the most recent releases.

The singles from “Rust In Peace,” enjoyed a good run (“Hangar 18” and “Holy Wars”), as did “Tornado Of Souls”. “In My Darkest Hour” was played, and apart from featuring some of the “Countdown To Extinction” essentials like “Skin O’ My Teeth”, Mustaine leapt forward nearly a decade, using Gigantour as a forum to market “United Abominations.”

For the first half of their show, Megadeth played in front of a large cinematic screen showing random visualizations, like fire spurting up from the ground or clouds rolling by. One of the best parts of the night was when this backdrop was ripped away to reveal a giant black background with a classic Megadeth logo as they tore into “Symphony of Destruction.”

“Kick The Chair” from “The System Has Failed” got a spot, but otherwise, the newest album took the limelight, as Mustaine led his crew through “Washington Is Next,” “Gears Of War,” and “Burnt Ice.” Perhaps the most poignant moment of the night was when Mustaine led the French Canadians through the heartfelt, bilingual “À Tout Le Monde”. In a blast from the past, “Peace Sells” wrapped things up on a high note.

Considering the grand scheme of things, the last time Gigantour hit North America, two stages offered big-name bands like Arch Enemy, Lamb of God, Overkill and Sanctity alongside Megadeth. Admittedly, the smaller but no less-talented lineup this year perhaps lended a bit more time and attention to everyone, but certainly that immense, festival feeling was gone from this moderately long metal show. Time constraints taken into account, everyone was so focused on promoting their new stuff that I think many fans came away a bit dismayed at the continuous lack of older material.

Then again, as far as shows go, it was fantastic to see such a great line-up under one roof, and for all my nit-picking, each band played very well and I had a great time.

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35 Comments on "Mustaine's Smaller Gigantour Returns Strongly"

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Anonymous Reader
1. SeiferothZero writes:

In Flames didn't play anything off of Whoracle in Toronto, either...very disappointed. "I'm the HIghway", "The Mirror's Truth", and "Alias" were the new songs they played there.

# May 7, 2008 @ 12:13 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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2. Kalis_wrath writes:

Excellent rewiew! I am sad that I will be missing this tour, however if it makes another run next year will be going.

# May 7, 2008 @ 12:44 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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3. Kalis_wrath writes:

Review*

# May 7, 2008 @ 12:44 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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4. StabbingTheDrama writes:

I was so bored during High On Fire and Job for a Cowboy. I was looking around on the internet while they were playing. lol Children of Bodom and In Flames were the highlight for me. I don't care for Megadeth much. I know I'm going to get flamed for that statement but I really don't like them.

# May 7, 2008 @ 12:50 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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5. Kalis_wrath writes:

Not by me Stabbing, I am kind of getting irritated by Dave more and more.

# May 7, 2008 @ 1:02 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
6. CrawfordTexasJingoJango writes:

I saw it in Pontiac, MI, and Job for a Cowboy was so ridiculous that I was in tears from laughing. I was wasted, too, but when you see five guys playing nothing but fast, loud confusion, and the only vocals you can discern is "OOgy, googy, googy" and the back up is a more higher pitched "goggy, goggy, goggy" it was impossible NOT to laugh. I liked the Doom EP even with it's stuck-pig vocals, but I think JFAC was the only band that didn't kick complete and total ass.

# May 7, 2008 @ 2:34 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
7. tunnelofpain writes:

One more week before Calgary, last time i saw Megadeth they whipped out "The Mechanix", i nearly sh** my pants.

# May 7, 2008 @ 7:24 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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8. kev74d writes:

Would love to see Megadeth before Dave calls it quits. In Flames is just a killer band. Love the guitar work. S.D.M.F.

# May 7, 2008 @ 7:32 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
9. D writes:

MAY 16th VANCOUVER BC FCK YEAH,

StabbingTheDrama and Kalis_wrath , obviously not much interest lies in the LEGENDS of our time , you little punks are likely just cookie monster f***ers and wouldn't know a legend if one punched you in the face , like MEGS would have done , and I will do if I see you there.... Show some respect to the founding fathers and talk like you know relentless a$$ kicking , skull bashing METAL LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!
By the way , any Metal conessure who disrespects Dave Mustaine has little respect for themselves, THIS GUY HAS A MUSIC CAREER THAT SPAN'S YOUR f***ING LIFE!!!!!

DO YOU GRASP THAT ????WHEN YOU WERE WATCHING SEASAME STREET HE CREATED A GUITAR CHORD SPECIFIC TO THRASH METAL........OUT!!

# May 7, 2008 @ 8:02 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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10. Kalis_wrath writes:

Wow D, you are quite the special case arent you? Firstly, I am a 23 year old woman and by no means "a little punk." Secondly, Dave is a whiny p***y and no matter how much he can shread a guitiar he still irritates me when he opens his mouth. A legend knows they are a legend and does not cry "political and personal" foul for not winning the grammys. You are the one who needs to grow up and realize that you are welcome to your opinion and so is everyone else. The grown up and way you could have approched this is to have asked me why I dont like Dave, instead you go off and make a bunch of asumptions about me. Real nice dude. Guys like you are a turn off!

# May 7, 2008 @ 9:25 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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11. StabbingTheDrama writes:

Yeah, that's such a ridiculous comment. I respect what he's done, not who he is. And which band was more successful? The one that he was kicked out of or Megadeth? Metallica, no matter what they sound like now, turned out to be the more successful of the two. Just because I never became a fan of Megadeth means that I have no taste in music? WONDERFUL. I'm not getting into a debate about which band is better because I really don't care. And because I don't like Megadeth's music means I don't respect any legends of all time. Again, GREAT. You just proved how intelligent you are, congratulations! And for the record, I like most types of music. Just because someone doesn't like a band, don't judge them about everything unless you actually know them and can honestly make that assumption.

# May 7, 2008 @ 10:19 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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12. Kalis_wrath writes:

Haha! I miss-spelled assumption because I thought the censor would mess it up.

# May 7, 2008 @ 10:38 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
13. ElHefe writes:

Megadeth and COB rocked Dallas...the other bands not so much.

I was hoping they would play Mechanix...but that was a negative.

On a side note, people get way to wrapped up in how Mustaine is advertised on web pages like this. Get over it - the man and the band can thrash. Every time I've seen him (early 90's and recently) the man has been all about the fans and put on a killer show. I highly recommend you don't base everything on quick articles and dumb quotes.

# May 8, 2008 @ 12:37 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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14. StabbingTheDrama writes:

I never did, I've seen them twice and have been bored. And I don't like that music. Thanks. ;)

# May 8, 2008 @ 1:00 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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15. StabbingTheDrama writes:

Sorry, I meant to say: And I don't like their music.*

# May 8, 2008 @ 1:01 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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16. Kalis_wrath writes:

I never did either, it seems in nearly every interview I have ever read, watched or heard from him he is always complaining about something. I have been in and around the metal world for a very long time and base this off the accumulation of 15 years of it and FINNALY angry enough to voice my irritation. I am a damn patient woman, but when enough is enough I start b****ing. If it were Jeff Walker from Carcass (one of my many favorite bands) did this I would get to this point just the same.

# May 8, 2008 @ 2:16 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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17. Kalis_wrath writes:

Did that*

# May 8, 2008 @ 2:21 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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18. ZT writes:

I love High On Fire, better than most bands out there today, but that's just me....

# May 8, 2008 @ 6:46 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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19. ZT writes:

"Dave is a whiny p***y and no matter how much he can shread a guitiar he still irritates me when he opens his mouth. "

I wonder if you said that to his face.... ;)

# May 8, 2008 @ 6:48 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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20. StabbingTheDrama writes:

I'm sure it's been said to his face and he didn't do anything. He'd probably rather take it in stride than go to jail. ;)

# May 8, 2008 @ 8:53 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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21. ahapaxlegomenon writes:

Seiferoth, I agree, Whoracle is my favorite, so that was a bummer. That's the thing about big shows like Gigantour, it becomes more of a "sell that new stuff" instead of playing a million good songs on your band's own tour. I'm with you, Stabbing and Kalis, Megadeth is great in their own way and with what they've accomplished, but they were absolutely much more of a spectator sport after acts like Bodom and In Flames. Of course, that's all very subjective though....

# May 8, 2008 @ 9:59 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
22. ElHefe writes:

I had high hopes for High on Fire, having heard a lot about them...maybe the sound was off, but it didn't sound that great. JFAC sucked hard.

Stabbing - fair enough point, I'll respect the opinion of having experienced it and werent into it.

Kalis - You're still losing me, all your talking about is Daves (from a 3rd party perspective as well) attitude. No offense, but I figured you to be one that is not be completely influenced by "the man" (I know, lame term, but without any first hand interaction, all you have to go on is propoganda shoved down your throat by mainstream media). I guess I was wrong. Much like all the Lars stories (although, the Napster thing was f***ing stupid no argument from me there), I take everything I hear with a grain of salt because of the easy target bands and persona's like that are. I tend to focus strictly on the music, and the show...and every show has been about the fans.

# May 8, 2008 @ 10:04 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
23. Txmetalhead writes:

To post 9 - You are a moron, and obviously are a bit over excited. It was a mistake to attack some of the members for posting their own opinions. When you type on a keyboard with angry statements it makes you look really stupid. Everyone, I am sure, agrees with me. You need to settle down - and post a counter-argument without letting your emotions control your thoughts.

# May 8, 2008 @ 10:23 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
24. Txmetalhead writes:

I went to the Gigantour concert myself, and I agree that Megadeth can play thrash very well. It was fukkin' loud, somewhat melodic, but the majority of their musik is heavy thrash... I am not a big fan of thrash, either. It was very high pitched and I had to back outside to keep my ears from ringing further. Megadeth is a good band, and they play fukkin' loud. I was impressed with In Flames too. I didn't see JFAC or High on Fire. I saw some of Children of Bodom, and they were pretty good.

# May 8, 2008 @ 10:27 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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25. bbristowe writes:

Wow D, you are quite the special case arent you? Firstly, I am a 23 year old woman and by no means "a little punk." Secondly, Dave is a whiny p***y and no matter how much he can shread a guitiar he still irritates me when he opens his mouth. A legend knows they are a legend and does not cry "political and personal" foul for not winning the grammys.

QTF. I lost touch with Dave after Youthinasia. All this born again christian crap. Not playing some of the material off "Killing is my Business..." because of offensive material. I couldn't agree with Kalis anymore. He is a prime example of a sell out.

# May 8, 2008 @ 11:54 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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26. Kalis_wrath writes:

Elhefe, "the man" is a term used by black people and hippies in referance to government officals and any authority figure. So yes, it was a lame term to use. I take a look at the big picture when it comes to anyone and that includes musicans no matter how good they are. I am even a bit peeved by Robert Plants reluctancy to reunite with Zep. Does not mean that I am denying his genuis vocal skills with Zep. When it comes to Dave I am irritated at the musican, not the music he makes. You are entitled to your opinion and I mine.

To those in support of me I thank you!

# May 8, 2008 @ 3:28 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
27. ElHefe writes:

Kalis, the term "the man" is not specific to a race. It's a term that represents leaders of large corporations, goverment and as you mentioned authority figures. It CAN be a sign of racial oppression, as well as the boss of blue-collar workers or - the enemy of cultural lifestyles that are against the norm. Are you really somehow turning this into a race conversation? Because my mind wasn't even there, nor does it belong here.

Fox news is an example of "the man". Big business. Republicans. And thats just 21st century.

No offense and your opintion is fine, but open your mind before you spout off.

# May 8, 2008 @ 4:01 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
28. Txmetalhead writes:

I am a p***y and take it in the a$$ from Mustaine

# May 8, 2008 @ 7:21 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Kalis_wrath's avatar

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29. Kalis_wrath writes:

Um... Elhefe, exactly what part of my post did I make this a race conversation? You say "open your mind before you spout off," however I fail to see how "opening my mind" makes what I have seen, heard and read any different by "opening my mind." I am sorry to say, but nothing you have said has swayed me and it seems the same thing on my end. I guess its a case of "agree to disagree." That is if you have that ability?

# May 8, 2008 @ 11:20 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
30. Cronus writes:

I really didn't intend to read the feedback to this article, but found the argument intriguing. A few comments about that discussion. I am not really a Megadeth fan although had Peace Sells and Countdown albums once upon a time and enjoyed both. I respect Dave as a musician and songwriter but personally think he should have found a decent singer years ago... however can dig that a person doesn't necessarily want to relinquish their lyrics to someone else. Although Metallica is a bigger band and I liked them in the 80s (as of today Kill em All is my favourite album.. which may change again), Megadeth at least sings about relevant topics. US foreign policy is the cause of or perpetuates the worlds problems. Its very cool that Megadeth, Ministry, Dying Fetus and countless metal bands sing about real issues. As for the article, I guess I should check out a few of these bands, but have to say, I have seen COB and am not a fan. Sure death is an acquired taste and I guess most fans are not out to see JFAC, who I'll be seeing on an off day show next week, but I sure love a death groove and would have never gotten into it had it not been for bands like Pantera and Sepultura in the day or even Celtic Frost earlier that found a way to mix angst and dance.

# May 9, 2008 @ 5:21 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
31. SonOfKalmah writes:

"It should be said that when both In Flames and Children Of Bodom played material from their newest albums, crowd participation dropped tenfold. Whether this is due to the crowd’s unfamiliarity with the music or a decline in quality is anybody’s guess." its a decline in quality for sure. i dont like the direction that these bands have gone in. blabla evolution and blabla $$. i understand but jesus, blooddrunk and sense of purpose are yet another step away from those 2 bands' sound. its just an opinion.

# May 11, 2008 @ 5:54 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
32. I like Va J J and poon tits writes:

I like Dave cumsatines he macthes the band music very well and his high pitch voice when he sings makes my balls tickle. Shawn drover is a good drummer he uses the p***s pedal. The p***s pedal is a bass drum technique. It requires you to tie a string to your p***s and the other end to the bass drum beater. Then you play really fast, ohhh man it feels sooo good.

# May 14, 2008 @ 3:57 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
33. Sauce writes:

In flames started off with "The mirror's truth," "disconnected," and "move through me" from their latest album. "The mirror's truth" got some people moshing and headbanging but disconnected slowed that down until the played "move through me." after that the room went insane for the next 50 minutes. btw that line up was in NY. IT was a great show ;]

# May 18, 2008 @ 1:53 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
34. Jesterhead writes:

Saw the tour in Cleveland and was very impressed with the top 3, mainly COB, they stole the show in my eyes. Megadeth always puts on a good show but they have more time to do so, they played mostly everything I wanted to hear and did an encore with "Holy Wars" which kicked ass.. In Flames played a weak set, highlights were..um..none. High on Fire and JFAC were mediocre mostly growl, growl, blah, blah..they could be talking about eating some dude out and most of the crowd would have no idea. So to sum up the Cleveland show first two bands are a waste, COB played strong with high energy, In Flames chose to promote new crap that sucks and Megadeth played new and old songs to satisfy the crowd enough.

# May 19, 2008 @ 12:53 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
35. ElHefe writes:

^ Same reaction for me, but in Dallas.

# May 19, 2008 @ 1:32 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address

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