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Monday, November 10, 2008
Recap of Metallica live in Columbus
On Sunday night, I took Mahlon to see Metallica at the Schottenstein Center here in Columbus. This was his first concert and he was super excited.

For me, it was my third time seeing Metallica; however, I hadn't really listened to their music in over 15 years.

Metallica in Columbus

I saw my first Metallica show when they opened for Ozzy Osbourne on his Ultimate Sin tour in 1986 in Charleston, WV. They were supporting their "Master of Puppets" album. The show is memorable for me because Cliff Burton was still alive and James Hetfield performed with a cast on his arm (a roadie played his guitar parts offstage) after a skateboard injury.

When I saw them for the second time, they were headlining their "black album" tour in 1992 in Charleston, WV. I actually was able to go backstage after the show. I almost met Jason Newstead, who gave me "the hand" when I tried to meet him, and did meet James Hetfield, who belched at me while signing my half-heartedly signing my autograph "Jaymz."

I had sworn them off completely after that experience; however, Mahlon, who is 11, caught Metallica fever thanks to Guitar Hero and Rock Band. In an effort to be the cool dad, I picked up two pre-sale ticket packs which included the new "Death Magnetic" CD and a digital download of the Columbus show.

Mahlon listened to the new CD quite a bit, played through the new album in Guitar Hero III and listened to my older albums in preparation for the show, so by the time the lights went out last night, he was ready.

Mahlon ready for Metallica
Mahlon before we left for the Schottenstein Center

We ended up with pretty good seats for the show. We were about 10 rows up from the floor in the lower level. Plus, the stage was set up in the middle of the arena, so that helped, too.

Metallica in Columbus

The stage show itself was pretty simple. There were large metal coffins above the stage that moved around some. There were also a few lasers and the occasional burst of flames. However, for most of the show, it was just the band cranking out a mix of classic songs (from "Kill 'Em All," "Ride the Lightning," "Master of Puppets" and "...And Justice for All") and new songs from "Death Magnetic."

Here is the full setlist:
That Was Just Your Life
The End Of The Line
Creeping Death
Ride The Lightning
Broken, Beat And Scarred
Sad But True
Wherever I May Roam
Leper Messiah
The Day That Never Comes
Master Of Puppets
Nothing Else Matters
Enter Sandman

Die, Die My Darling
Jump In the Fire
Seek and Destroy

Surprisingly, the new songs were just as well received as the older ones. They opened the show with the first two tracks from the new album and played three more throughout the rest of the set. That was the most from any album.

In addition to the five from "Death Magnetic," they played four tracks from the "black album," three from "Master of Puppets," two each from "Ride the Lightning" and "Kill 'Em All" and one (aptly "One") from "...And Justice for All." They also played a cover of the Misfits' "Die, Die My Darling."

Highlights for me were "Creeping Death," "Cyanide," "Battery" and Kirk Hammett's guitar playing. He nailed every solo and run throughout the show. It was pretty impressive.

The show ended with an encore of "Seek and Destroy." The band turned the house lights on before the song so that they could see the crowd. They also dropped dozens of giant, black, Metallica beach balls that the crowd batted around for awhile before realizing that they would make cool souvenirs. After that, you could see dozens of guys awkwardly trying to hold on to the balls while watching the rest of the song.

Metallica in Columbus
See the video here

Overall, they put on a great show. They definitely didn't sound like a group of 40-somethings who have been playing many of these songs for 25 years.

Mahlon summed it up much more succinctly than I have here. He said it was "awesome!"

You can check out more photos and videos here.

About Shawn Morton

Married father of 6; VP of Social Media at JPMorgan Chase; gluten-free; gadget enthusiast; hair metal aficionado; #Movember man View more on LinkedIn.