The world was a different place on the 28th of August, 2023. In fact, it is a different place every single day. The band Evanescence was an integral introduction to my favoured genre of music, female fronted metal, and was something that got away from me as a teenager. I purchased tickets to a concert, and was promptly not allowed to go by my parents.
I was crushed, and gave the tickets to friends who went, and enjoyed themselves. I didn't really get their views on whether it was a good, or bad show. I don't remember. Perhaps I repressed that.
Still, now, as an older human being, without the need to answer to any parental authority, I sat in my car, just prior to peak hour traffic on my way to the Adelaide Entertainment centre.
After more than 20 years, I was going to see the band live. I only knew their first album, and 20 years of other material was going to be a blur of unknowns to me.
The line wasn't too long when we arrived, but there was an impressively large number of "VIP" ticket holders who would get early access to the stage and to hear the soundcheck. From outside the venue, and with the benefit from the super zoom of a smart phone, it was clear that buying merchandise would be out of the question, with most of it being about 75% of the ticket price.
Still, many people were buying it. Memorabilia.
I was there to make memories. Maybe I made the wrong ones.
The opening act was a group called the The Beautiful Momnument. They were a bunch of energetic, talented chicks, with a male drummer. Their bass player absolutely stole the show; with head high kicks and full on, energetic acrobatics the whole time.
From the moment this band starting making a wall of sound on the stage; from the first thorax shaking double bass kicks and chords, I instantly knew that I had missed live music with an intensity I couldn't recall. The volume, the atmosphere, the absolute energy of thousands of watts of noise hitting your body like a wall is a true sensation of surrender unlike any other.
The opening act was impressive. Stage techs rushed the stage when the curtain of noise fell, and music played through the ambient speakers.
There was a lull as people went to go get a snack or drink from the bar, but for the most part, it was the most "stable" I'd seen a crowd between acts. Then came the moment.
The sound system boomed into life. On came "Killing in the Name of" by Rage Against the Machine. The crowd erupted. To a recording. It was incredible. At least three quarters of the concert venue where singing along, dancing, and screaming their lungs out to a fucking recording of a song released thirty one years ago. It was an intense, unifying moment for the crowd.
Young, old. Everyone was enjoying themselves.
Then Evanescence walked out on stage and I lost my hearing in my left ear as my ear plug fell out. Amy Lee and her entourage were entirely consummate professional musicians from the moment they stepped out on stage until the moment that they went away for a well deserved rest.
Their set was delivered with reverent energy, and the disappointment began when I quickly realised that I enjoyed the Rage Against the Machine interlude more than an enjoyed the sea of smartphones filming and live streaming the majority of the Evanescence concert. That was an incredible disappointment.
As was the medley of the kick arse later portions of the "Fallen" album, which left out the heaviest of riffs from one of my favourite tracks on that album, "Whisper". All in all, however - I do not regret the money I spent to see on this act, as it was indeed my entry to my favourite musical genre.
It's just people that I hate.
A few weeks on from this Evanescence gig, I was out to see a Rage Against the Machine tribute act. They blew me away. They were incredible. It makes me scour the "socials" to see what other bands are kicking around the place and what else I can go and see to get enjoyment from a life, thriving mass of bodies and an incredible wall of sound.
Most importantly, there were no phones in hand, just drinks, devil horns, and communal madness at the system that had gathered all the people together in a single place, along with the perennial, wobbly floorboards of a first floor, packed Enigma bar in Adelaide.
It is a pity that not all that many International Acts come to little old Adelaide, South Australia; but even the local ones turn out pretty good.
What was your favourite concert memory?