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ELectric Ballroom, London, June 12th 2012

Tina Saul

tina saul

Download Festival is over again for another year and as the memories and hangovers start to fade, it's time to get back to reality and a life without bad weather and Metal. Well, for most people anyway, except the lucky few hundred fans who managed to grab a ticket for Megadeth's intimate show at Camden's Electric Ballroom. The weather is still rubbish and the Metal is most definitely here, so game on.

For anyone who's not been here before, it's a small venue suited for bands just building up their fan base, not one of the Big 4 who just played a blinding main stage set at the UK's biggest Metal festival. But that's the beauty of Download, there's always a band or two doing unexpected sets in the days before and after.

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As I dragged my weary ass into the venue, really wishing there had been a days respite after Metal Hammer's Golden Gods the night before, I soon perked up once I realised that I was going to see one of my favourite bands take to this tiny stage.

I was fully expecting them to open up and blow my tiredness straight up Camden High Street, but sadly that didn't happen. It wasn't Megadeth's fault, it was the lack of decent sound. The music was barely audible for these thrash kings and anytime Dave Mustaine spoke, all you could hear was some distant mumbling. And whoever was in charge of lighting should have realised that it wasn't a solo artist appearing, with the rest of the band shrouded in darkness for the duration.

However that wasn't going to stop me enjoying myself as the set was packed with classics, from albums new and old. Personal highlights for me were 'Symphony Of Destruction', 'Sweating Bullets' and 'Angry Again'. And of course it's always great fun to watch Metallers sing their best French for 'A Tout Le Monde'.

And just as we were getting into the swing of things, the impossible happened... they shut the bar... at 10.00pm and only an hour into the set. As everyone was still wondering how they were going to keep their croaky vocal chords lubricated, that was it, their set finished.

So with a ticket price of over £42 was it value for money? One side of me wants to say yes, as it was one of those gigs you had to be at, but the sensible side (yes I do have one) thought that it was a complete rip off for a set that was little over an hour.

I guess I'll just have to look forward to their headline set at Hellfest this weekend instead. And reminisce over my lovely chat with Dave Ellefson at Download Festival, speaking of which...



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