The Metal Files

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Armored Saint Concert Reviews, Chicago, IL & Milwaukee, WI, July 21-22, 2018

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What a whirlwind weekend.

I’ve no deep connection with Armored Saint beyond always liking them and never thought they did a truly bad album.  They are currently playing Symbol of Salvation in its entirety and that’s one of my faves.  The short tour wasn’t coming to Texas so Rodney and I decided to head north and catch 2 shows, Chicago and Milwaukee (Saturday and Sunday shows, respectively).

We were flying out of San Antonio on Saturday morning so I decided to stay with him Friday night.  After a quick dinner we went back to the house and I had a minor kidney stone pain come on.  This is the 20th one since 1989 so I wasn’t too freaked out.  I went to bed and pain got worse for the next couple hours so I grabbed my bag and drove to the nearest emergency room.  A quick cat scan and some morphine and it was confirmed that I had a biggish sized stone but the doc felt it would pass eventually.  I messaged Rodney that I was at the hospital in case I couldn’t get out in time to catch our flight.  I was discharged around 3AM.  Luckily he saw my message and was able to let me back in the house.  So that was that.

We dropped into Chicago, ate at Portillo’s and went record shopping.  Didn’t find much and headed to the hotel to chill for a bit.  We took a ride to Reggie’s to get Wrath, Acr of Defiance and Armored Saint.  I’ve been to Chicago several times in recent years for shows at Reggie’s and this was the first time that I didn’t really know anyone there besides Rodney and one other friend, Michael.  I know a lot of metalheads in Chicago and none of them were there.  Weird.  But no matter, the show was packed.  I had never seen Wrath and while I’m not much of a fan beyond a couple of songs on Fit of Anger, they were solid live.  Don’t think I’d ever need to see them again on purpose.  Next up was Act of Defiance which features ex-Megadeth guitarist Chris Broderick and drummer Shawn Drover along with Shadows Fall guitarist (on bass) Matt Bachand and some singer I didn’t recognize.  They were awful.  The most generic thrash-ish stuff I have ever heard.  It just wasn’t cohesive at all.  Then came Armored Saint.  The opened with March of the Saint, Long Before I Die and Chemical Euphoria.  I hung near the back of the venue for the set.  I was a bit tired from the hospital visit but Saint had me pumped up.  They were stellar, beginning to end.  Back to the hotel.

Woke up Sunday feeling great and we got in the car for the short drive up to Milwaukee which included another Portillo’s run.  We hit some shops along the way and found a few things, but nothing major.  We grabbed dinner at a local pub and were both a bit tired and crashed out in the car for a bit.  Saw our buddy Randy at the show.  Then around the block for the early show.  No local openers and I endured Act of Defiance again.  I did get to say hi to pal Jeff Duncan for a moment right as AoD was playing.  Always good to see him.  After a quick stage change, I got up front for the first 1/3 of the set.  Another stellar show, albeit it lightly attended.  It ended at 11.  We had an 8AM flight and still had to drive back to Chicago, painful.

With a few hours sleep and another kidney stone attack, we were back the the airport and on our way home.  Again…whirlwind! And worth every moment.

Written by The Metal Files

July 23, 2018 at 5:58 pm

Posted in Uncategorized