Metallica live is more
than just half the fun, for me it represents where the band seem most
comfortable and most at home. Cunning Stunts demonstrates this to great
effect. A DVD shot in Ft. Worth Texas over two nights on their Load tour,
gives us an insight into their grandest and most OTT stage show to date.
Entering the arena with
the lights on from under the seating areas is like watching your favourite
wrestlers descend on the ring all in one go. Kicking off with a jam (which
was discovered later as being the main riff from Bad Seed off of Reload,
which had not at that point been released) kicking straight into the crowd
sing along of So What, during which the house lights go down and we are
inserted directly into the full Metallica live show. Creeping Death
follows and sounds like a monster.
The set included a
number of new songs from the Load album giving fans a chance to digest
what these songs sounded like live. This definitely helped due to the fact
that Load was met with mixed reactions. So, by putting Bitch, Hero and
King Nothing (the moment in the set when the second half of the stage
emerged) served if nothing else as a way of ramming the new material down
people’s throats, to make ‘em like it, if you will.
Of course the set was
also filled with the anthems we come to expect from a Metallica show: One,
Bellz, Roam, NEM, the monolithic and slightly slower Sad But True, all
complete the ingredients for a great show. The huge stage means that
there’s always something to watch, be it Lars frantically running from
one kit to the other during the Kill/Ride medley or the other three boys
getting in the faces of some of the hardcore element of the fan base up on
the barrier. The aforementioned medley is one of my favourites from the
show, a huge collection of great riffs moulded together to make a massive
behemoth of a song.
Fuel is a nice treat as
it was a preview of a new song, meaning that you never know how its going
to sound next to the rest of a well polished set, but it came through
nicely, clearly kicking the crowds arse into the following week.
represents the band well into the tour, well oiled and sounding great,
Newsted as ever a bundle of energy, Kirk’s guitar chops well on form, as
is Lars’ drumming and for the most part Hetfields voice is too, although
to be 100% honest there are a few (and only a few) parts where it perhaps
doesn’t sound as powerful as others and sounds a little tired, but still
delivers just how we like it.
The pyros that are seen
in One and the Kill/Ride medley during Fight Fire with Fire all come to a
head in Sandman where there are explosions, a man from the lighting rig is
set alight and runs across the stage, flames from the stage etc, etc. An
OTT but great stage show, leaving the crowd wondering if what they’ve
just seen was a major accident or another part of a great show.
This creates a segue
into the garage part at the end where we witness the band dominate Am I
Evil? and Motorbreath using just practice amps and a few light bulbs to
light the stage, an amazing and unusual end to a stonking gig.
that wasn’t enough, the DVD has got extra sections to dig your teeth
into from warming up backstage to interviews with Mick Hughes the sound
engineer through the other members of crew and so on. A great DVD or video
to buy, documenting exactly where the band stood at the time, another must
buy from the boys.