Heavy Metal in a Post-9/11 World
This ticket was from the second time that I saw Savatage. I had seen them earlier on the 2001 tour for the "Poets and Madmen" album and was so impressed that I needed to see the show again and I needed to share that experience with my brother, Justin, who was an even bigger fan.
We were able to get there early to get a spot at the front of the stage for the openers, Nevermore. I don't remember much about their set but I remember their guitarist was amazing. A bunch of younger guys in the crowd were clearly huge fans as they were yelling, "Loooooo-missssss, Loooooo-misssss!" Jeff Loomis was definitely impressive and he has since gone on to have a successful solo career as well as becoming a guitar player for the awesome band, Arch Enemy.
Savatage did not disappoint, either. It was a special show because September 11 had just happened. For those who remember those days right after the attacks, life seemed to be put on hold. There weren't any TV shows other than the news. Air travel was completely suspended. Concerts were cancelled. For those of us in the DC area, security was tight and no one was sure when a normal life would resume. Metal fans were all over the Savatage website bulletin board (no Facebook or other social media at the time) talking about whether the Jaxx show would even go on. Luckily, they made it and it was fantastic. They covered just about every album from their catalog and the new singer, Damond Jiniya, was a presence and great counterpart to Jon Oliva (co-founder of the band who shared the lead vocals). It was the last time that the band embarked on a proper tour so I was glad that I was able to experience them live.
Savatage on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/3N1B1g6JtIgd6ClRkzD4yT
(My top five are: "Believe," "This Is the Time," "Edge of Thorns," "Gutter Ballet," and "Hall of the Mountain King")