Iron Maiden Newcastle Arena 14 May 2017

maiden tix may 2017Well it has been more than 30 years since The Maiden and I touched base. Too long. I have many happy memories of Iron Maiden and early days at Sunderland Locarno and Newcastle City Hall, Paul Di’Anno and early tracks such as “Running Free”, the entrance of Bruce Dickinson (who I had known as Bruce Bruce from Samson), the hit song “Run to the Hills” and, of course, the ever present giant monster Eddie.

This was one of the first concerts after my accident and I was both looking forward to it and also a little nervous about travelling so far in the back of a taxi and sitting through a rock concert. While I need not have been nervous. There was nothing to fear. As soon as Iron Maiden took to the stage I felt “at home”; a kid again; back in the swirling, magical, loud experience that is heavy rock music. Somewhere along the road Iron Maiden have evolved from pioneers of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal to a classic, almost vintage, heavy rock band.

The current members of the band are the ever present leader, original member, and super bass guitar player Steve Harris, long time guitar men Dave Murray and Adrian Smith, drummer Nicko McBrain and local hero Janick Gers on guitar. And of course, Bruce Dickinson on vocals. Iron Maiden have a style of their own; soaring, operatic rock vocals, triple guitar rock with lots of OTT solos, and a super energetic front man in Bruce Dickinson. Oh, and of course, the aforementioned Eddie who always makes an appearance, lumbering around the stage striking fear into all who dare come near him.

maiden progThey enter the stage to the music of UFO’s “Doctor Doctor” (great choice and clearly setting out their influences) and then straight into a set which draws from their entire back catalogue, and heavily from their new album The Book of Souls. There are lots of songs that are new to me, but they all sound great and when they go back to the early days and “Iron Maiden” and the first encore “The Number of the Beast”, I am on familiar territory. I was expecting “Run To the Hills” and they don’t play it, but hey you can’t always have everything. They leave the stage to the music of Monty Python’s “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life”, which about sums the evening and the whole experience for me. My carer, Alan, was a Maiden virgin but really enjoyed the whole thing. A great night with a great band. It was like meeting old friends again. I was back on the rock ‘n’ roll rollercoaster; in a wheelchair, but still rocking away. Happy days are here again.

Setlist: Doctor Doctor (UFO song as intro); If Eternity Should Fail; Speed of Light; Wrathchild;    Children of the Damned; Death or Glory; The Red and the Black; The Trooper; Powerslave; The Great Unknown; The Book of Souls; Fear of the Dark; Iron Maiden. Encore: The Number of the Beast; Blood Brothers; Wasted Years. (Always Look on the Bright Side of Life: Monty Python)

8 responses to this post.

  1. Its a shame you didn’t go to the gig the following year Peter, it was more of a ‘greatest hits’ set with loads of classic 80’s stuff, but Maiden are always great value, I bet it was amazing to see them at Newcastle City Hall back in the day!


    • Posted by vintagerock on January 22, 2022 at 10:43 am

      Hi Steven yes I must go and see Iron Maiden next time they come to Newcastle. There always put on an excellent show! Happy days Peter


  2. Love iron maiden Peter, really sorry to read about your accident, I was in a car accident I few years back and though I’m not in a wheelchair, I needed a lot physio in order to get back on my feet and my mobility will never be what it was, so I can empathise to an extent, but it’s inspiring to see that you’re continuing to do what you love! On the subject of maiden, my nephew is 17 and a proper rocker, and I took him to see maiden at the arena for his 13th birthday a few years back, I hadn’t seen them since castle donnington in 1992 and I could hardly believe how good they were, I thought at first it was this gig but looking on the internet it was their visit to Newcastle the year after this, which was a sort of ‘greatest hits’ tour. I suppose I feel a little sad for our Kieron and his generation that love rock in that the classic bands like maiden are near retirement I guess and I can’t see anyone taking their place. Makes me grateful I got the chance to see so many of these bands in their hay day. As you say happy days.


    • Posted by vintagerock on March 19, 2022 at 10:18 am

      Yes it is strange what life throws at you Connor. Life can change in an instant. Yes Iron Maiden have always been class, even since the very early days. Happy days Peter


  3. Can I just say mate, you’re a legend mate, if I had a time machine I’d love to go back and see some of these gigs you’ve seen, particularly Zeppelin at Newcastle City Hall, that’s beyond comprehension. I’m a huge Maiden fan and in December 2003 they were the first band I ever saw live, at the Newcastle Telewest Arena as it was then known, I was 14 and went with a couple of my mates from school, it blew my mind and got me into going to gigs, which I’ve done ever since. I obviously cannot come close to your record but I’ve seen a fair few really good ones over the years and more to come in 2023. You’re an inspiring dude and hope you’ve had a nice Christmas and all the best for the new year, I’ve really enjoyed your reminisces!


    • Posted by vintagerock on December 27, 2022 at 12:27 pm

      Thank you so much Ben. I am pleased you enjoy reading my concert memories. Keep on rocking. Yes I have been to a lot of concerts, but then I started a long time ago! Happy days Peter


  4. My dad died when I was 13 but not long ago I found an old shoe box that had loads of ticket stubs mainly from Newcastle City Hall and gigs you were at, its really touching to me to read descriptions of gigs my dad would’ve attended so thank you. Final word on Maiden, Ive been to a lot of gigs in the last nearly twenty years but maybe the best ever was the Irons at Twickenham Stadium in 2008, day I’ll never forget. Peace.


    • Posted by vintagerock on December 29, 2022 at 12:30 pm

      Hi Ben I am so sorry that you lost your dad when you were so young. It must have been strange, but nice, finding his ticket collection. Iron Maiden are pure class! I have spent many happy times in their company Peter


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