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Megadeth Live at Romexpo: A Night of Metal Mayhem in Bucharest | FESTIVALPHOTO

Megadeth Live at Romexpo: A Night of Metal Mayhem in Bucharest



Megadeth Live at Romexpo: A Night of Metal Mayhem in Bucharest

The air in Bucharest buzzed with electrifying anticipation as news of Megadeth's impending concert spread. When it was announced that the thrash metal legends would perform at Romexpo on June 10th, 2024, excitement rippled through the rock community. On the day of the concert, the Romexpo area was a sea of black T-shirts, leather jackets, and denim vests adorned with patches, as rockers of all ages gathered hours before the gates opened. The palpable sense of excitement and camaraderie was infectious, with fans swapping stories of past concerts and speculating about the night's setlist.

Opening Acts: Stellvris and Vendetta FM

As the gates swung open, the crowd surged forward, eager to stake out prime spots near the stage. At 7:00 PM, the first opening act, Stellvris, took the stage. A relatively new band in the metal scene, Stellvris has quickly gained attention with their powerful blend of melodic death metal and metalcore. Formed in the mid-2010s, they have been making waves with their aggressive yet harmonious sound, characterized by blistering guitar riffs, thundering drums, and dynamic vocal ranges that shift from growls to clean singing. Their 40-minute set was an adrenaline-fueled introduction to the night, and the crowd responded enthusiastically, moshing and headbanging along to tracks like "Ascendancy" and "Echoes of the Abyss."

At 8:00 PM, the stage was taken over by Vendetta FM, a Spanish hardcore band known for their relentless energy and confrontational lyrics. Established in the early 2000s, Vendetta FM has a dedicated following in the hardcore and metal scenes. Their music, a brutal fusion of hardcore punk and metal, tackled themes of social injustice and personal struggle. The band's intense performance, featuring songs like "Against the System" and "Resist and Bite," stirred the audience into a frenzy. The pit grew more chaotic as fans were swept up in the band's raw energy.

The Weather and Atmosphere

Despite the scorching heat, with the concrete underfoot radiating warmth as the day wore on, spirits remained high. Fortunately, the organizers had anticipated the weather conditions, ensuring ample drink stands and beer stations were scattered around the venue. Between the sets, water was generously handed out, and occasionally, staff members sprayed the crowd with refreshing mists of water to keep everyone cool.

The audience was a vibrant mix of seasoned rockers, many of whom had followed Megadeth since the band's inception in the early 1980s, and younger fans, many of whom were experiencing the legendary band live for the first time. This generational blend highlighted the enduring appeal of Megadeth's music, bridging age gaps and uniting fans in their shared love for thrash metal.

Megadeth Takes the Stage

At 9:00 PM, as the sun dipped below the horizon, the moment everyone had been waiting for arrived. Megadeth stormed the stage to a deafening roar from the crowd. Despite their nearly four-decade-long career, the band members looked remarkably fit and full of vigor. Dave Mustaine, the charismatic frontman, led the charge with his signature snarl and intricate guitar work, joined by Kiko Loureiro on lead guitar, Dirk Verbeuren on drums, and James LoMenzo on bass.

The setlist was a perfect blend of classic hits and newer material, demonstrating the band's evolution while honoring their roots. They opened with "Hangar 18," igniting the crowd with its complex solos and relentless pace. From there, they tore through fan favorites like "Symphony of Destruction," "Peace Sells," and "Holy Wars... The Punishment Due." Each song was met with thunderous applause and enthusiastic sing-alongs, the lyrics echoing back from thousands of voices.

The concert was an absolute masterclass in thrash metal performance.

The band’s technical precision was evident from the very first note. Mustaine’s vocals, still sharp and ferocious, carried the defiant tone that has defined Megadeth’s sound for decades. Loureiro’s guitar solos were blistering and intricate, showcasing his extraordinary talent and adding a fresh dynamic to the band’s classic tracks. Verbeuren’s drumming was a powerhouse of energy and precision, driving each song forward with relentless intensity. LoMenzo's bass lines provided a thunderous backbone, grounding the complex arrangements and enhancing the overall impact of the performance.
Highlights and Special Moments

One of the standout moments of the night was the performance of "Dystopia," the title track from their 2016 album. The song, with its cutting riffs and politically charged lyrics, resonated deeply with the crowd, underscoring the band's continued relevance in the modern era. The band also played "Fatal Illusion" and "Post American World" from the same album, each greeted with enthusiastic headbanging and cheers.

Midway through the set, Mustaine gave a very personal touch to the music, forging a deeper connection with the audience, who responded with chants of "Megadeth! Megadeth!" that echoed through the venue.

Another unforgettable moment was the performance of "A Tout Le Monde." This haunting ballad, a departure from the band's typical thrash sound, saw the crowd swaying and singing along passionately. The emotional weight of the song was palpable, and Mustaine’s delivery was heartfelt and moving.

The visual aspect of the show was equally impressive. The stage setup featured a massive backdrop emblazoned with the iconic Vic Rattlehead, and the lighting design added a dramatic flair to the performance, with strobes and spotlights accentuating the music’s intensity. Pyrotechnics during "Peace Sells" added an explosive element, thrilling the audience and elevating the concert’s overall experience.

As the final notes of "Holy Wars... The Punishment Due" faded into the night, the crowd erupted in a final, fervent cheer. Megadeth had delivered a masterclass in thrash metal, proving that despite the passage of time, they remain at the top of their game. The concert at Romexpo was not just a performance; it was a celebration of the band's legacy and the enduring power of their music.

In conclusion, the Megadeth concert in Bucharest was a night to remember. From the palpable excitement in the air before the gates opened, through the electrifying opening acts of Stellvris and Vendetta FM, to the blistering performance by Megadeth, the event was a testament to the unifying power of metal. Despite the heat, the energy and passion of the crowd never waned, making it a truly unforgettable experience for all who attended.

Review by Irina Marinescu

Writer: Vlad Ionut Piriu
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