I was at the Black Sabbath charity gig in Birmingham in 2001. This was absolutely the best way to see Sabbath, in a small venue (I'd guess about 1500 people packed the place out). There were massive queues down the street of unlucky people without tickets. To me, the band were absolutely phenomenal, it was amazing to be just a few feet from the band as they delivered their classics, I got myself centre-front and just jumped around with a massive grin on my face the whole time. I far prefer these kind of gigs to big festivals, they're a much more intense and intimate experience and I feel privileged and extremely lucky to have got to see that.
- Metallica & Anthrax on the Master of Puppets tour in Birmingham, just a few days before Cliff was tragically killed. Both bands were at the absolute top of their game. Stunning.
- Spiritus Mortis in their home town Alavus. I travelled to Finland to interview them and they gave a majestic performance in their local venue. Fantastic hosts, great people and a superb band.
- Anthrax & Testament on the Among the Living/New Order tour. Anthrax were still fantastic, but I was there for Testament - Chuck Billy was absolutely fucking amazing, and Testament lived up to everything I wanted of them.
- Death Angel in a tiny venue in Wolverhampton, probably only about 200 people there but that made it packed! Stunning energy from this wonderful live band, there virtually wasn't any stage we were all just in their faces, and they just delivered the goods. Great guys to chat to after, very humble.
- Black Sabbath & Testament on the Dehumanizer tour, first chance for me to see Dio live, and luckily for me supported by one of my other fave bands.
- Black Sabbath Seventh Star tour, with Ray Gillen. An odd inclusion in some ways as this was sad to see: Sabbath in their home town in a venue that was perhaps only a fifth full, if that. But this was my first ever Sabbath live show and they put in a great performance. I had no clue who Ray Gillen was at that time, but I left feeling I'd seen a genuine Sabbath experience, and at the time I was excited to hear more from this line-up (which obviously wasn't to be).