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Motley Crue Shines, Ozzy Brings It at Ozzfest 2010
Written by John Alvarez   
Monday, 16 August 2010 06:05
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Back in 1996 Ozzfest when was created, I don’t think Sharon or Ozzy Osbourne had any idea what it would amount to. I mean, the whole reason for Ozzfest to begin with was because Lollapalooza organizers wouldn’t let them play (Lollapalooza by the way is in a bit of trouble), back then however, there was no stage according to Rob Halford, it was just heavy metal on the dirt. While I don’t know if I believe that statement, one thing is for sure; heavy metal will never die.

The Ozzfest tour skipped 2008 and 2009 entirely, so that Ozzy Osbourne could work on his new album set for release in 2009 but it was delayed till June 2010, when it eventually made it to the top 10 in seven countries, including #4 in USA. Ozzy Osbourne with his recent hit album, plus performing alongside the legendary Motley Crue : now that’s sounds like s recipe for success.

The estimates for the days show was in the 100,000’s, and though we can’t confirm or deny that number, I can promise you this, it sure looked like it.  While the majority of people at the venue were guys in 1990’s faded band t-shirts, there were a lot of other people there also. Any which way you turned you could see a family with a baby boy in his stroller frontin a green Mohawk, or a girl and her grandpa wearing an Ozzfest shirt, to girls in their bathing suit tops and guys in leather biker-club jackets. It wasn’t all fun though, well, yes it was – but not for everybody. With quite a few fights breaking out – with smaller fights quickly growing to include 5 or more people that weren’t even involved with the original tussle.

The side stage, sponsored by Monster Energy had a brutal mosh pit towards the end of the afternoon, at times, it began to be an almost scary spot to be around. Even the tougher guys were coming out of the mosh pit with black eyes and holding their stomach almost unable to walk. Part of it was due to bands like Exodus , Drowning Pool , and of course Black Label Society  that demanded larger, faster, and harder circle pits as the afternoon went on. At one time when I was in the very back next to the porta potties, Drowning Pool front man Ryan McCombs demanded everybody scream – and those even doing their business were screaming.

When the main stage started there was a bit of an overlap because the side stage was still going and I don’t think many people realized that local band, Nonpoint, was killing it; but only to a small crowd. It’s hard for anybody to compete with Black Label Society though, whom was finishing up on the side stage. By the time Devil Driver c ame out people were slowly starting to come over from the side stage and hardcore fans were standing up in their seats screaming lyrics and sometimes, guys were screaming there love to the band. The bands hard hittin in your face got the last circle pit of the night going, a large but empty pit in the orchestra area. At this point a security guard pointed out to me a big disclaimer in his paper work, that you should enter the orchestra area at your own risk. I don’t think there was much of a problem with the pit itself, but maybe the drunk girl that puked all over the pit floor before getting escorted out. Sadly, nobody really noticed and everybody was stepping all over it, not so surprising for such a rough and tumble crowd.

When Judas Priest, er, Halford I mean took the stage, it wasn’t the first time he was on stage with Ozzy. In fact, this superstar has replaced Ozzy on more than one live Black Sabbath concert. Today however wasn’t one of those days. Halford came out for himself and while the crowd wanted to eat it up, it was a bit hard as the tone set earlier by the hard hitting in your face music was killed by a lacking and dull performance by the man once long ago people considered the “Metal God”.

Motley Crue however had absolutely no problem waking up the now almost sleeping crowd. Easily, the best performance of the night and quite possibly one of the most entertaining concerts I have been to in a long time. Immediately, when they came out  with “Kick Start My Heart” with Vince Neil running from side to side stage not missing a beat,  people around me started getting up for the first time since before Halford. The stage was filled with beautiful red lights shining onto the Motley Crue logo on a backdrop of skyscrapers which would be lit with fire throughout the night. The entire stage performance was very exciting – complete with fireworks throughout the hour long set and not one missed beat from the classic rockers.

Wildside” was played with green fireworks that lit the stage like  a 4th of July parade. The set continued with “Shout At The Devil," with everybody singing along to the chorus proving that Motley Crue could have easily filled the amphitheater by themselves.

Even their newer songs like “Saints of Los Angeles” got a crowd reaction, possibly proving that I was the only one that hadn’t heard the song before.

Though a few people would have loved for them to keep up with the hard rocking pace they started, when Tommy Lee got on a grand piano and they started doing “Home Sweet Home”, that was easily a highlight of the night for most.

Motley Crue’s set list includ ed more of their greatest hits like “Dr. Feelgood” and “Motherfucker Of The Year” – which had everybody with both middle fingers in the air (for a second I thought I was at a Pennywise concert), and “Same Ol' Situation”.

The guy next to me, Mike, quite possibly the biggest Motley Crue fan in southern California having paid $500 for his SEAT from a ticket broker told me that playing, “Ten Seconds to Love”, was definitely a treat from Motley Crue to their fans.  The set ended with classic “Girls, Girls, Girls”.

Even though, Ozzy Osbourne seemed a bit slow at times, he shined throughout the night.  Having a two year break, he came out with guns blazing. Most can only wish to have as much energy as the now 61 year old that is building more fans 40 years into his career then back in the good Ol' Black Sabbath days. Ozzy Osbourne was jumping and running around the stage all night greeting fans and even spraying them with a huge water canon front center of the stage!

A lot of his new fan base can be attributed to his reality tv shows, but today wasn’t about Ozzy, "the reality guy."

It was about the Prince of Darkness.

Before the show, a very entertaining video of Ozzy Osbourne superimposed onto videos of popular tv shows and movies, like Ozzy wearing a red Ed Hardy shirt in a scene of Jersey Shore, my personal favorite, the desert scene in the movie Hangover, Ozzy in a Lady Gaga video, and even Iron Man and Avatar! Then the screen had a big statement, “Let the Madness Begin!” to start the set with band already on stage.

Ozzy’s set opened with classics like “Bark at the Moon” before going to “Let Me Hear You Scream” from his new album, “Scream”. If Ozzy Osbourne didn’t play Black Sabbath covers it wouldn’t really be an “Ozzy” concert after all – with songs like “Fairies Wear Boots”, and “Paranoid” – two huge Sabbath hits included in the setlist of Ozzy songs to keep things excited.

In the middle of the set, a crazy guitar and drum solo to spice things up before continuing with “Iron Man”, another Black Sabbath cover.

To finish off historic night, and some 13 song or so setlist, “Crazy Train."

Till next time

 

 

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