Long Beach Arena
Long Beach, CA
Article and Photos by: Jenni Jayde
This show was somewhat reminiscent of my first show ever at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater in Irvine, California. The opening band at the time was the little-known Quicksand, followed by the just-becoming-popular White Zombie and Anthrax. I hadn’t seen Anthrax perform since that show in 1994.
Priest Feast was a reincarnation of my first show ever and I was unusually excited to see the show. While the band lineup is similar, this time White Zombie goes by “Rob Zombie” and Rob Zombie was being opened for by Anthrax, not the other way around. Oh, and let’s not forget that BOTH bands were opening for Judas Priest.
Despite the low early evening turnout, Anthrax’s performance was nothing short of amazing! Their entire stage show was energetic and singer Joey Belladonna looked great after so many years. Among my favorite hits played was “Got The Time”.
Fans of Anthrax’s went wild when the song started. Scott Ian looked amazing as always with a half-red goatee and green blended Washburn guitar.
Rob Zombie was the highlight of the evening. In Halloween style, John 5 came out with skeleton face paint and Rob Zombie was dressed up as, what else, a zombie.
I’ve always loved watching Rob perform. His energy and enthusiasm for the music is clearly expressed by his rapid weaving around the stage (which, by the way, is murder for the photographers). I last saw Rob Zombie in Phoenix, Arizona for Ozzfest 2005 and this show was by far more energetic and lively.
John 5, whose ultra-hot wife (Aria Giovanni) was dressed up as a school girl and was filming the performance behind me, looked great on stage. However, I’m always concerned when a guitarist lifts his guitar over his head and stops playing, but the guitar licks seem to keep coming anyway… Zombie performed all of his hit songs except “Thunderkiss”.
Baffled, the audience gave Zombie a standing ovation which invoked an encore! Never in my life have I seen an opening band be given an encore. From backstage the ever-famous intro to “Thunderkiss” began… Needless to say, Rob Zombie was a hit!
Finally, after a nearly forty minute set change, Judas Priest began. The set was rather large and, to everyone’s dismay, singer Rob Halford spent the entire first song standing at the back of the set.
He spent the second song lurking around the middle of the set. It was almost as though his positions on the stage were mapped out according to each song. The whole planned performance took a lot out of the potentially great stage show.
The good news is that the vocals were strong and the band members can still put together some great music. Unfortunately, I was kicked out of the Arena after taking photos and couldn’t watch the rest of the show.
In all, Priest Feast was a phenomenal show with great music. The show stealer by far, and in agreement with other fans, was Rob Zombie. His on stage enthusiasm made the show for me. Anthrax was also entertaining to watch. Judas Priest, though musically sound, didn’t impress me much with live show character.
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