Saturday, February 02, 2008

A fan, a spectacle and faith redeemed

He's walking like a small child

But watch his eyes burn you away

Black holes in his golden stare

God knows he wants to go home

Children of The Damned

When was the last time you were in love? Honestly I can't remember. But I do remember the pangs of pain and sheer torment of being in his presence. Things were beautiful, so was he. I felt blessed and maybe even he. That nervous laughter, that flutterting twit, the excited energy, the shaky smile, those bright eyes...the air felt sublime with electricity. Just like the twang of an electric guitar. A beautiful rhythm, a naked riff and an incindiary bass that would seep under your skin and pull you from the inside. Besides all things, I remember most the yearning and angst of torture to possess. A deadly sin. I felt more alive than a livewire

It happened again last night...

He's walking like a dead man

If he had lived he would crucified us all

Now he's standing on his last step

He thought oblivion well it beckons us all

Children of The Damned the Iron Maiden concert. Six men who walk amongst us. Six frames all under six feet. Six arms and voices that make chaos and pain seem beautiful. That is true love. My skin felt awash with goosebumps, arrested in wonder as a child whose been narrated fables. The songs they sang ripped through and through and the gyrating melodies trembled through the core of my being. Everything hit. Bruce Dickinson climbed the monitors, the stage support cranes, changed his costume and waved the British flag…narrating the tales of wisdom, debauchery, anger, pain, treachery and the devil’s tales through their mythological songs…Fear of the Dark, Trooper, 666:The Number of the Beast, Can I play with Madness and a rare treat they belted out a song they hardly play – Seven Deadly Sins on the acoustic. And when they asked "Scream for me, Mumbai." We screamed. We yelled and we sang in perfect symphony. S&N couldn't believe what they saw. With astonished faces they looked, they hugged and they sat back in amazement. Their senses were seduced and I, in a wierd sort of way, felt proud. being one amongst the crowd, I somehow still stood out. I was home and this was my country. These were my people and we all had one religion ; Iron Maiden.

Now it's burning his hands he's turning to laugh

Smiles as the flame sears his flesh

Melting his face screaming in pain

Peeling the skin from his eyes

Watch him die according to plan

He's dust on ground what did we learn

You're Children of The Damned

What hits you first is the disorderly chaos. The strident strumming of the guitar, the wash-and-wail of the bass, the drums alternating between rim shots, rolls and pile driver snare, the tambourine almost demure in comparison, keeping time…and then the glorious dramatic howls of the charismatic frontman. The impenitent tropical pyrexia now chilled with night frost, but the temperature of the crowd was rising. You would have to be a very dull person-a snob, or a sad cynic-not to enjoy this show. The sound is of symphonic scale, and of course there is the spectacle, especially here, on and off stage-the sight of fans, arms aloft, singing every word of every song. And suddenly the media moshpit at the previous days press conference came back to mind. Yes, we were fortunate to share the limelight, extract autographs, talk to them, pose with them and touch them...

Your back's against the wall

You turn into the light

You're burning in the night

You're Children of The Damned

I had been in pious company. I was touched by the Gods and faith had been redeemed. I was the child of the damned. Thanks Bruce, Steve, Janichk, Nicko, Dave and Adrian. Thanks for the irking and shuddered reminder. Love is still alive

Like candles watch them burn

Burning in the light

You'll burn again tonight

Children of The Damned

(lyrics intrerspersed from the 1982 Iron Maiden album, 'Number of the Beast' - 'Children of the Damned')