You have to hand it to the British heavy metal institution that is Iron Maiden for still looking like they’re enjoying every minute on stage. While many bands at a similar stage in their career could quite easily dial in the live performance, not so with Maiden, who continually work hard to better the previous tour with each new heavy metal spectacular they take on the road.
Joining the metal legends for this run of dates across the UK are German metal outfit Lord of the Lost, who many UK fans will know from their recent antics as the German entry in the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest. A thumping mix of modern and industrial metal, the band makes the most of their time on stage with Eurovision entry “Blood And Glitter” getting more than a few heads nodding across the hardcore Maiden fanbase.
By the time “Doctor Doctor” starts to ring out as an announcement that showtime is just around the corner, there isn’t a spot in the arena that isn’t filled with a fan wearing some form of Iron Maiden merchandise. Whether it’s a new tour t-shirt or a faded “Number of the Beast” tee, fans new and old singalong as the band race into the opening number “Caught Somewhere In Time.”
During “Stranger In A Strange Land,” their iconic figurehead Eddie puts in an appearance but while his presence has been a staple of any Iron Maiden show for decades now, the set list for the early part of the show leans more towards material from the band’s latest offering, Senjutsu. Plucking “Writing on the Wall,” “Days of Future Past,” and “Time Machine” from the aforementioned album, you certainly can’t accuse Maiden of just relying on the classics.
That being said, hearing the band romp through “The Prisoner” or hit single “Can I Play With Madness?,” does make you yearn for a few more of the old faves. Thankfully “Heaven Can Wait,” complete with an onstage gun battle between Eddie and frontman Bruce Dickinson, scratches that itch for some pure classic Maiden.
The band themselves, as already alluded to in this review, look like they’re having an absolute blast on stage. Dickinson jokes about how well “Death of the Celts” went down on a trip to Ireland recently while Steve Harris and Janick Gers pull all the respective poses out of their well-used repertoires. This tour may be entitled “The Future Past” but, while the set favours more modern material, the show itself is unashamedly Maiden at their heavy metal best.
The night ends with a few more classics, including “Iron Maiden,” “The Trooper,” and “Wasted Years,” and, while fans are always going to feel the need for more classics in the set, not one fan, young or old, could dispute that tonight, this was Maiden at their most glorious.