The big thing I'm most excited about? I saw two concerts in the last week & a half, at a venue that I hadn't been to since June of 2008, when I saw Iron Maiden for the first time.
Thursday, August 25th, my brother & his girlfriend carpooled down with us to go see the mighty Black Sabbath, one of the godfathers of heavy metal, a true legend. They're on their The End tour, which is supposed to be their final tour ever. Their last US date ever is November, & then they'll end the tour in the UK, & that's supposed to be it. No more Black Sabbath. I'm very happy to say that I've seen THE Black Sabbath. We got there early, in a LOT of traffic, hung out & watched people tailgate & had some hard ciders in the lot, & headed on it. It was MOBBED there. Absolutely mobbed. We managed to get to our seats just a minute before they started, if that. They put on a great show & played a lot of great songs, though I had hoped to hear Electric Funeral. On the way out, I hit up the merch stand, because I just HAD to get a shirt. $40 a shirt though. Yikes.
As neat as that was, I was most excited for the next show just three days later at the same venue: Korn & Rob Zombie on their Return of the Dreads tour. A couple of weeks beforehand, the boss at work decided I worked too many Sundays & removed me from the rest of the Sundays of the month, & I had to take all the Fridays & Saturdays for all of August & the first part of September. As irked as I was, I realized this presented an opportunity: I now had the day of the show off, & on a whim, I bought a ticket. I bought a ticket for Section 13, thinking it was under the covered part of the pavilion, & I just thought, "Well I loved them in high school, I'm just going for the nostalgia. That's a good enough seat for me." However, when we went to Black Sabbath & went to find our seats, I noticed the section numbers & realized that the section I got tickets for wasn't even in the covered part of the pavilion & was a lot further back than I had thought. This troubled me, as I DID want to be close enough to see. (I thought I would've been about as close as I was for Iron Maiden, the last time I had been there. Apparently 8 years had made me forget the layout) The very next day, I opted to just see how much a closer ticket would be, & was surprised to learn that the closest tickets were $59 before fees. I mulled it over all day long, & nearly missed my chance, as I noticed a couple half-rows of seats from the aisle in that were still available. When the aisle seats became available again, when someone decided not to purchase them, I pounced & bought a ticket. I was then left wondering what to do about the seat I already had. I threw them for sale on the ticket site, & thought that the worst case scenario, I could look for those "Got any extra tickets?" folks outside the venue. Luckily, the ticket sold the very next morning, which ultimately bumped down my final cost for getting a seat to something like $40. Not bad at all!
I got a ride down with Rick H. He met me at the Salem store, since my car is in no shape for lengthy drives anywhere. We got there at a decent time, & there was hardly any traffic, & we parked over in Lot 10. (A huge improvement over Lot B, where we were for Sabbath) It was just one lot back from where we tailgated for Iron Maiden, & we people watched for a while before heading in. In This Moment was the opener for the show, a band I'm not very keen on, so I took the time to look at merch, check the beer carts, & chit-chat with Rick & Steve B. I had hoped that, despite the high costs of a beer, I would find a cart selling cans of Stella Artois Cidre ,after seeing cans on the ground at Sabbath, but no such luck. About 10 minutes before Zombie hit the stage, we all went to go find our seats. I had a Section 1 seat, Row T, so off I went to find my seat. I was surprised at how close even the back of Section 1 was, & was thinking, "There's no way I could've gotten THAT lucky!" Sure enough, after showing my ticket to a staff member, I was waved on to head down to my seat. I walked by the box seats, which were really quite cool in the fact that they were individual to 3 seats in a separate boxed area with a little table. Down I went, until I hit Row T, & I could not believe how close my seat was! The GA pit was right in front of me! I took a few pictures so I could remember how close I was exactly, before the lights hit just a few moments later. The fun then ensued from there.
Rob Zombie went on before Korn, so the lights hit, & there was an opening track being played leading up to the band's entrance. Upon entering the stage, they kicked right into Superbeast, one of the songs I did know. (I hadn't kept up with Korn or Rob Zombie after graduating high school, so anything newer, I wasn't familiar with) I had thought I'd be recording a song or two, but the energy was so high & it was so much fun, I recorded only a few clips. I had one of those "Whoa!" kind of moments when a giant Devil appeared on the stage behind Rob & seemed to dance around, & throughout their set they had other interesting stage props. Later on in the set, during the song "Everybody's Fucking in a UFO," they had a guy in a giant robot suit walking around on stage. This, of course, came after the alien race that Rob did, when he threw two inflatable aliens into the crowd with giant penises taped to their front. (Of course, those got ripped off real quick) I took a quick clip during that, & you can see the aliens going back & back as Rob is chanting, "Come on come on come on, ET!" & more. Rob was so quick & nimble on stage as well, reminding me of my buddy Bruce! The guy is 50 years old, & yet he's jumping & spinning around on the stage, kicking & sliding & more. It was all so high energy & so much fun, I ended up being very surprised by how much I really really liked the set. They played other songs I didn't really know ,as well as a few of the classics I did know, like Living Dead Girl (with a "IF YOU WANT TO FUCKING PARTY, SAY ' I WANNA FUCKING PARTY!'"! by Rob to get the crowd going before leading off with "What I really really really really really need is a Living. Dead. Girl.") Never Gonna Stop was also played, More Human than Human was played, & of course, they ended off their set (after a brief trailer for Rob'z new film "31") with Dragula. It was AMAZING, & as soon as I walked out of the seats between sets, I knew I was going to have to see them again.
After Rob Zombie, I briefly met with Rick & Steve, before we all split ways. I opted to see if the charging hub would charge my camera, since the charging outlet on my camera is the same as most Android phones. The cord fit, but no one's Android devices were charging, so I was bummed about that. As I started to head back, I walked by a beer cart that had a few taps, including Angry Orchard. Despite the $13.50 price tag for something like 24oz of cider, I got one & went to wash up real quick in the restroom. As I was leaving, someone found a green iPhone & had asked if there was a Lost & Found around. The cleaning lady couldn't understand her, so the rest of us ladies suggested maybe at security by where tickets were scanned or over by one of the ticket kiosks at the entrance to find out where to go. As I headed back up to my seat, I walked by a girl who was telling two guys she was with that she was pissed that she was going to have to buy a new phone & that she couldn't believe she lost her phone. I asked her, "Was it green?" She said, "Yes! It's an iPhone!" So I told her about the girl who found it & told her where the other girl had gone to try to find a Lost & Found. One of her buddies Cheers'd me & said it was awesome timing that I happened to be walking by when I did, so I hope I successfully accomplished a good deed & she got her phone back.
I got back to my seat, cider in hand, & not long after Korn started. They started out with a building intro that gave me goosebumps. Korn, the band I loved for so long in high school, was about to hit the stage. I had wanted to see them live since my sophomore year in high school or so, & I was finally about to see them. I had snuck a quick peek at their setlist online before the show, & was pleased to see that all but two songs were all songs I would've seen live if I had seen them in 2006, when I graduated. They started off with Right Now, & lead off into other great songs like Got The Life, Y'all Wanna Single, Coming Undone, Make Me Bad, & more. For even older material, they delved into Shoots & Ladders, & I was SO HAPPY to see Jonathan Davis play the bagpipes. They also did Blind, & they also did Twist, where I was able to see the original scat-style vocal song. (The scat made appearances in Freak on a Leash & also in their new song, Rotting in Vain) The new songs were pretty awesome, too, which I knew those after seeing the videos online. I love the new song Rotting, & Insane grew on me. It was neat. They finished off with Freak on a Leash, & that was it. Something I had waited over a decade to see had finally come to an end. A long-time (10+ year) goal had finally been checked off my To-Do list, & my inner 16 year old couldn't have been any more thrilled. (If only I could tell the old me how awesome it was & that I'd see them someday!)
I was so pumped about the show of course, I went against my original decision about buying merch & bought a Rob Zombie t-shirt & an autographed Korn poster that came with a little card for a free digital download of their new album coming out in October. (I would've gotten a Korn shirt, but I just didn't see one I was in love with. After spending $40 on a shirt at Black Sabbath, $35 wasn't much better, & I did have to be at least somewhat mindful) We made it back out to the lot after running into Steve again, & we hung out in the parking lot. Steve ran into a friend who had obtained VIP/Meet & Green passes, & he had three guitar picks from Munky, & gave one to Steve. (Jealous!) We hung out for probably half an hour before parking attendants pointed out a way we could exit without waiting in the standstill traffic that had lined up in the aisles. We made it out in no time, & got to the highway very quickly, & we made it back with no problem. I got back home before Eric did, & tried to fall asleep sometime before 4 so I could get SOME sleep before a 12 hour shift at work the next day.
I know I got very detailed about this one, but holy shit, I'm STILL pumped about this show. I'm still watching my clips, wanting to go see them again. I tried to find a way to Hartford to see them on Thursday, as I could've gotten a front row seat OR a pit ticket, but no one could go. It worked out for the better anyway.
I woke up Thursday morning with my upper left eyelid so puffy, I could barely open my eye. I went to Urgent Care walk-in clinic on Friday, because it hadn't entirely gone away, & another rash of sorts developed on my upper left arm. I wanted answers as to why I was constantly having issues. On the plus side, I was happy to learn it wasn't bug bites of any kind, so no spiders or gross things. The doctor said it was hives, which was an allergic reaction to something. What exactly, I don't know. I'd have to see a specialist for that test. They did run some basic bloodwork to check liver & kidneys, just to rule out anything like Lyme I'm suspecting, & my bloodwork came back just fine. So the good news is, it's not anything I need to worry about as far as bugs go. The BAD news is, I'm now allergic to something, & I have NO idea what. My diet has not changed, & Eric did start using a Febreeze fabric refresher in the washing machine as well as use his mother's detergent, but the doctor believed it was something I was ingesting. Not sure if it's a food I'm eating, or if it's from air fresheners or incense or what. I'll have to dig up a notebook & keep a log of what I'm eating or when I'm using cleaner/fresheners, & see if I can notice a pattern. I hope it's not something on my Subway sub! Probably not though, unless I'm allergic to mayo or pepperoni or salami now or something. I did start putting spinach on my sandwich, but this issue has been going on since before I started doing that. I hope I can get that allergy test done sooner rather than later. I did get prescribed a steroid of sorts to help clear it up, & it's working. I woke up to my left arm breaking out Friday morning. It should've still been very red & ugly, & it's nearly entirely gone away. (I made the mistake of scratching it yesterday, so that didn't help) My eyelid looks a thousand times better, too, which unfortunately the doctor did say it was related.
I guess that's about it. I should finish work stuff. I wanted to write about this sooner, as Rob Zombie was a week ago already. So much fun! I also learned I have indeed developed an allergy to something, & have to go make appointments to try to figure out what. Boo. Anyway, that's that!