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Date: 2008-09-12
Location: Berlin - Germany [13 shows here]
Venue: O2 World [1 shows here]
Info: Metclub and MissionMetallica only
Fan reviews: 1 - Add yours!
Author: Phil
Setlist: Yes

Note that this concert was part of a larger trip, whose details and pictures you can find here.

We got all our stuff and headed out. We stopped at Burger King for an early dinner so we would have energy for the show. As we were leaving a random guy came up to say hi and tell me about some metal party because I was wearing a Metallica shirt.

We were aiming to get there around 6 (doors were at 7), but it took longer than expected and got there around 6:20. There was a sizable crowd already and we tried to find the best place in that crowd to get in quickly.

Around 7:30 they opened doors, and the crowd forced its way through several single-file lines that the baricades enforced. This was the first event at this arena, and you could tell there was a bit of unfamiliarity the staff had. However, the enterance way to this arena was very well designed to control the incoming crowd and force them into single file lines.

Once in, we ran to buy t-shirts. There was no merch booth as in most venues; instead several people were walking around with baskets of shirts strapped to their chest as well as a full on merch store. At the door to the store I was told we couldn't enter the store without having to leave the venue afterwards and come back in, and that I would need to buy from the guys holding shirts in the foyer. So to those folks I went. These people, sadly, only had medium and large and said I'd have to go to the store to get and XL. Back to the store I ran. I explained this to the very nice security gaurd there who said he'd get me in if I waited a few moments. About 2 minutes later, he scanned my ticket out, and said that he'd scan my ticket back in at the same door and I wouldn't have to go back out. So in I went, bought my shirt, and went back to the door between the store and the venue. Another, larger, security gaurd stopped me to tell me I couldn't go that way. I managed to get the attention of the original security gaurd however, and get back in. Christophe and I then went running to find the enterance to the floor, which took a bit longer than we'd hoped, but eventually we got there.

The floor felt incredibly familiar; the stage was nearly identical to the Madly In Anger With You stage. It was a square stage in the center of the floor, with a baricade around it so you could be on any side. The drumkit was on a raised platform that, presumably would do a 360 degree turn throughout the concert. The stage was big enough that the floor space was fairly limited. In other words, you didn't have to worry about getting crushed. We picked a back corner where we were 4 people from the baricade. Unfortunately we were at a corner, and the band was either coming from this corner or the next corner down, and getting pushed out of the way for that means you likely aren't going to get your spot back. I went to scout other potential spots and found one where we were only 2 people from the baricade and we moved there. Unfortunately it was at the "back" of the stage, and unlike on the Madly stage the "back" has a big cut out for a sound booth (which is odd because there was another sound booth at the back of the floor near the front side of the stage). This meant that weere an extra 6 or so feet from the stage. This seems like a bit of a design flaw to me, but it wasn't a huge problem. It was also where the band would come down during breaks, so that was kinda cool.

We took a firm hold on our position and waited. And waited. And waited. Shortly before show time Adrian texted me to say him and Kat were there! They weren't originally going to go, so I guess it was a last minute change of plans! We agreed to meet up after the show.

Finally "Long way to the top" came over the PA and I told Christophe it was time to put in our earplugs. Moments later, "Ecstasy" came on, and the band came running out.

They started with That Was Just Your Life to great enthusiasm by the crowd. They went immediately into The End of the Line and I started to wonder if they were going to play the entire album front-to-back! James said the usual "hi" stuff, and they went into The Thing That Should Not Be. The crowd went wild again at this heavy classic!

At some point during these first two songs the crowd went pretty insane and everyone got pushed around a lot and I found myself standing on the base of the baricade in the "2nd row" for lack of a better decription. The woman beside me clearly did not like this and spent most of the rest of the show shoving her elbow into me. For a while I thought she was just trying to make room for herself, but after a while it became obvious. Christophe told me later she would often say something to her husband, then give me a dirty look before going all elbow-y on me. This being a generally light crowd, it wasn't hard to ignore it.

The rest of the setlist kicked just as much ass. We got 5 Death Magnetic songs (Broken Beat & Scarred, The Day That Never Comes, and Cyanide in addition to the first two)! We also got som stuff they haven't played in a while like Wherever I may Roam, Jump in the Fire, Until It Sleeps, Of Wolf and Man, and Frantic! They even busted out Blackened and the excellent cover song Blitzkieg! What an incredible setlist! It was great to see them playing a lot of the new album, something they haven't done in a while. The setlist kept you headbanging the entire way through and was truly an exhausting, amazing, and awesome experience. Most importantly it was just a fun setlist!

Like the Madly In Anger With You stage, the drumset did do a 360-spin during the show, but instead of the part of the stage that spun being a large circle consisting of most of the stage, only the small raised platform Lars' drumkit was on actually moved.

Near the end of the show hundreds of Metallica beach balls were dropped from the ceiling. They were black with the Metallica logo in silver and came in tons of sizes from very small to freakin' huge. They covered the top of the audience and most of the stage. The crowd loved it and the air was a storm of beachballs for a few minutes. The stage was covered in them and the band was kicking paths for themselves across the stage. I can't describe quite how surreal it was to see the stage covered in beach balls, the band laughing hysterically and kicking balls around trying to get to the mics or just to other parts of the stage. Kirk even popped one of them by stabbing it with the head of his guitar! They were having a fantastic time up there and the audience was going wild. It was absolutely insane!

Within a few minutes people had deflated most of them to take them home, and sadly I didn't manage to get one. Annoyingly, several people had two and one person even had 3 large ones. Talk about being an asshole.

There were a few interting issues during the show as well. About half way through the show Lars broke a snare drum, and during one of the last songs, I think Blitzkrieg, Kirk switched guitars 4 times. Not sure what was wrong.

Overall energy was very high from both the band and the audience. Everyone was in great spirits and it was a fantastic show with a killer setlist. Even Christophe my Metallica-newbie friend enjoyed the show a lot.

After the show we headed out end eventually managed to find Kat and Adrian. We were looking to get some post-show food but they were tired and wanted to go back to their hotel and get sleep. We were both planning on sight-seeing the next day so we talked about meeting up in the morning, and then headed off.

We jumped on the only train operating, and got off at what appeared to be a fairly large train stop in hopes of finding food. We grabbed some pizza and I got a chocolate crepe and then headed back to the hotel.

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