A review by Thomas Zeltwanger

OK, it's almost a week ago, but anyway: Here's a brief report of the MOTORHEAD/BLACK SABBATH concert in Hampton Beach, NH, 07/14/95. The venue, the Ballroom Casino, had a capacity of about 2500 people, and I estimate that about 1500 people were there (just a guess, I might be wrong by far).

I won't bother to report anything about the opening act ("We are TIAMAT from Stockholm, Sweden") because I never heard of them prior to the concert and they didn't impress me one bit either.

At 9.20pm Lemmy and friends took the stage. "Is anybody here who doesn't know us? We are MOTORHEAD! And we're gonna kick your asses!" Lemmy says it and proves it immediately with playing

1. The Ace of Spades
2. ?? (didn't know this one)
3. I'm so bad (Baby I don't care)
4. ??? (this one was announced to be from the new album which I haven't heard yet)
5. Metropolis
6. "The next song is the title track of our new album" Sacrifice
7. "The next song is dedicated to all politicians" Liar
8. Stay clean
9. The next song is a very fast one. If you like to dance ... don't dance to this one, or you might break your fucking legs!" - Burner
10. ??? (from the new album)
11. Lemmy Solo
12. ???
13. "Are you ready for more?" [Some lame confirming cheers from the crowd
14. Well, we're playing anyway." - Going to Brazil
15. "The next song is dedicated to anyone here." - Killed by Death
16. Iron Fist
17. Overkill

MOTORHEAD ended at 10.20pm.

After the following break the lights went off again at 10.50pm and the BLACK SABBATH show started with an (at least to me) unfamiliar intro. It sounded pretty scary, requiem-like, and would sure be a hell of a soundtrack for any horror movie! I remember that they used a similar intro on the TYR-tour, but I cannot confirm that it was actually the same. The guys entered the stage and started off with

1. Children of the Grave
2. Neon Knights
3. Tony Martin: "This is my 8th year with SABBATH, and the next song is the very first one we ever recorded together." - The Shining
4. The Wizard
5. Get a Grip
6. Martin introduced now Murray and Powell: "It's good to have them back in the band, and a good opportunity to play something from the Headless Cross album." - Headless Cross
7. Iommi Solo
8. Rusty Angels
9. "It's time to go back once more to the Headless Cross album." - When Death calls
10. Sabbath bloody Sabbath
11. Can't get close enough
12. War Pigs
13. Mob rules
14. Black Sabbath
15. Heaven and Hell (including a terrific and long Iommi solo)
16. Iron Man (Encore)
17. Paranoid/Heaven and Hell reprise (Encore)

SABBATH ended at 12.35am.

I don't need to comment on the older songs, most of you have heard them often enough live. As to the new songs: "Get a Grip" is probably my least favourite from the new album and it was pretty much the same in the concert. Simply boring. I consider "Rusty Angels" one of the better songs of "Forbidden" and it added quite nicely to the show. But what a surprise about "Can't get close enough": This one didn't impress me at all on the album, but what a difference live!. It sounded tight and powerful! I could well imagine hearing this one on future tours.

During most of the set I was in front row, but pretty far to the left, right in front of the left speakers. I couldn't see Powell and Nicholls at all, and Murray only occasionally when he moved a little bit towards the center of the stage. But I had clear sight on both Tonies all the time. The fact that I was seated right in front of the left speakers is probably responsible that I experienced a pretty bad sound quality during most of the SABBATH show. The drums and the bass covered Iommis guitar most of the time. Only when Powell and Murray took a break for an Iommi solo or an intro his guitar was clear to hear. And hell, he played great! It's a shame I could hardly hear him during most of the show.

I think that Martin did a good job overall, in singing and in commenting on the songs, although he should try to sing more himself and less make the crowd do the singing, this just never works out to be too great ("especially in "Get a Grip" and in "Heaven and Hell"). Maybe again due to my unfortunate seating before the left speakers Martin's vocals sounded in times very distorted. I don't think that can be blamed on him, I more had the feeling that the whole sound set was not properly adjusted. But then again, MOTORHEAD sounded great. Maybe they just played loud enough...

Cozy Powell did a fine job too. Nothing especially great, no solo, but some good solid drum work. About the same applies for Murray, he's just no Geezer Butler.

As to the harmonica intro of "The Wizard": Yes, I think Tony Martin does play it himself. It sounded very similar to the original, but it wasn't exactly the same.

During "When Death calls", when it came to singing the chorus, Martin stopped singing and pointed at Nicholls who sang these three words of the chorus ("When Death calls") in a very high-pitched voice. Boy, he sounds female!

Nicholls was introduced by Martin with the words: "This man has been in the band for 16 years. 16 fucking years!" Tony Iommi was in great mood all the time, smiling and laughing. He also walked a lot around the stage. Not only back and forth as he always did, but also from the right to the left.

At the encore, when the security finally unleashed us from our seats I managed to come more to the center and saw the whole stage. No particular stage set, no gravestones like somebody reported before. I saw that Nicholls played some additional guitar during "Paranoid". I don't know if he added more earlier (except for his keyboard job and the "When Death calls" vocals), because I couldn't see him prior to the encore.

At the end Iommi threw a handfull of plectrums to the crowd but I was once more unlucky and couldn't catch one. And Tony Martin promised:" BLACK SABBATH will be back!" Now, that's a relief! After leaving the Casino I ran into Lemmy who walked around in shorts (it was still more than 90 degrees!) and shook a few hands.

All in all a very good concert with two terrific bands, although I think last year's concerts of the "Cross Purposes" tour were even better.

Thanks for reading. Tom

Posted by: Joe Siegler Author Profile Page at July 13, 2010 12:01 PM