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Photos and review by Gus Griesinger
Iron Maiden brought its ‘Legacy of the Beast’ tour to Newark, New Jersey, on Friday, October 21, 2022, before a sold-out crowd. The tour that started back in in 2018 in Tallinn, Estonia is now just about to wrap up in Tampa, Florida on the 27th of this month. Due to the pandemic, the tour was put on hold and now the band has been finishing up dates that were missed since May of 2022. With a new album in tow titled Senjutsu, the band mixed in new tracks along with past favorites. Even outside of the pandemic, Maiden will put in 140 total shows marking it the longest tour since the 1986-87 ‘Somewhere in Time’ tour.
Maiden took the stage at around 8:45 p.m. to the first few chords of the title track “Senjutsu” being played. The 8-minute-plus track really encompasses the fluidity of the triple-attack guitars of Janick Gers, Dave Murray and Adrian Smith. Vocalist Bruce Dickinson joined his bandmates shortly after the song started. Halfway through the track, the band’s mascot Eddie came out was dressed up in in a samurai suit messing around with both Dickinson and Gers before exiting. The band continued to focus on new material as both “Stratego” and “Writing on the Wall” were played next. The latter track included Smith playing an acoustic guitar at the very beginning of the tune.
Before the next track, Dickinson took time to talk about getting through the COVID pandemic and then scanned the crowd for various flags from other countries. This was a segue into the next song "Blood Brothers.” Dickinson remarked, “No matter where we come from, we are all 'Blood Brothers.'” Dickinson then appeared in a dark black cloak in front of the stage with a lit-up cross for “Sign of the Cross.” Next up was a fan favorite Maiden song in “Flight of Icarus.” Dickinson had a backpack strapped to his back and was able to shoot flames out of each hand during the song. An inflatable Icarus was a backdrop to the song and disappeared simultaneously when the song ended. It was very cool and a nice visual to add to the show.
The song that Iron Maiden loves to perform live probably more than any other is “Fear of the Dark." They really feed off the crowd energy for this track; the crowd’s energy and feedback throughout is impressive. Gers is at the forefront, as his chords lead into Dickinson’s vocal. Dickinson wears a Venetian masquerade mask, top hat and holds a lantern as he walks around the stage singing while leading the crowd.
The song that truly defines the powerful rhythm section of bassist Steve Harris and drummer Nicko McBrain is “The Number of the Beast.” Lots of smoke and pyro, also accompanied the stage backdrop. The band went back and closed out the first part of the set with the song “Iron Maiden” off their debut of the same name.
The band did two encores. The first had Dickinson come out dressed in his British soldier uniform for “The Trooper.” Eddie made his second appearance, also accompanied in the same type of outfit. The band closed this portion of the set wit “The Clansman.” The band returned to close out the night’s festivities with “Aces High.” An inflatable Spitfire plane went up and down above the stage during the song. At the beginning of the tour this was the opening track. Now the song closes the set.
Even though the band only played 15 songs, the set still lasted approximately two hours long. It was great to see the band add songs from both the Paul Di'Anno and Blaze Bayley eras. This really was a true retrospect of the band's catalog.
Think that Iron Maiden will just sit back on their laurels? Not a chance. The band has already announced their next tour called ‘Future Past’ and it will start in Poland next June. Rumor has it that a new Bruce Dickinson solo album is in the works and possibly a solo tour from him in 2023 as well. There is no rest for the wicked when it comes to anything Iron Maiden.
The Writing on the Wall
Sign of the Cross
Flight of Icarus
Fear of the Dark
Hallowed be thy Name
The Number of the Beast
Run to the Hills