Saturday Night: Iron Maiden at The Woodlands

Iron Maiden, Coheed and Cambria Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion August 18, 2012

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With 15 studio albums and at least as many world tours now under its belt, Iron Maiden is not a band from which fans are seeking innovative new sounds. More than 30 years after they shoved heavy metal in an electrifying new direction with their self-titled debut and sophomore classic, Killers, the British rock stalwarts' show is mostly a celebration of reliability: Reliable riffs, reliable props and reliable precision.

Saturday night at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, Iron Maiden reliably delivered. Better than many of their peers on the heavy-metal nostalgia circuit, Maiden is adept at infusing nostalgia with novelty. This summer's Maiden England World Tour harkens back to the band's 1989 live VHS of the same name, which captured the band's '88 tour in support of the album Seventh Son of a Seventh Son. That trek's 24-year-old set list and stage dressings were dusted off for the occasion.

Rehashed as it was, the show was still spectacular. Not just spectacular for some old dudes with pointy guitars, either -- just plain spectacular, period. A lot of the credit has to go to the crowd. A fist-pumping sea of black Iron Maiden shirts, they joyously hung on every note.

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Nathan Smith
Contact: Nathan Smith