I had the pleasure of seeing Meat Loaf on his Seize
the Night tour at that Palo casino event theater. I hadn't gotten the chance
to see Meat since his Everything Louder tour for "Bat Out of Hell II,"
but I'm happy to say he's still got it. And if all his current venues are
as intimate as Palo, you could still have a chance to get very close to
Meat Loaf Concert Review
After a very quick "All Revved Up" intro,
he opened with "Paradise." A surprising, bold choice considering
that's the ultimate show stopper. I grew up in the Patti Russo era so I'd
never seen Aspen Miller do the girl parts before. Patti Russo is a tough
act to follow, and Miller did well by not trying to top her. She did her
own thing, bouncing around as a bubbly cheerleader, and later slinking out
in a gown for "Anything for Love." She actually attacked Meat
during the "Gonna Go All the Way" part, which was different. The
"Stop Right There" doesn't really make sense after that, but who
cares? It's "Paradise!"
The opening could be explained by the costume change. The two high school
songs had Meat in a football Jersey. Once "Paradise" ended, he
re-emerged with a classy blazer for the next few songs, adding again a jacket
for the remainder of the performance. He looked the healthiest I've probably
seen him, though it's also the closest I've ever been.
The first act was all classic "Bat 1 and 2" songs. They saved
the new stuff for the second act. I was actually excited to hear "Bat
3" live, since I already knew the other songs sound awesome. Act 2
opened with the intro to "Seize the Night," leading into "Monster
is Loose." Whatever you may think of the title track, it is one powerful
number in person. The real treat was "Bad for Good," which finally
sounds like a Meat Loaf song. Without the stunt cameo of Brian May, it's
just Meat Loaf doing Steinman. "Blind as a Bat" and "If It
Ain't Broke, Break It" held up as authentic to the album versions.
I was surprised they didn't do "It's All Coming Back" since Meat
is so high on his version of that, or the full version of "Seize the
Night," but maybe they change it up across the country.
Meat did a great job playing to the audience with
funny banter, and playing with his band mates, encouraging solos and messing
with his backups. He even revealed his favorite song to the audience, but
he made us promise not to tell anyone else, so I won't do that. I'll give
you a hint though, it's from "Bat 1."
A few of the songs were abbreviated versions. Of course the aforementioned
intro versions, but there were also some radio edits of the classics (i.e.,
no daddy verse in "Objects.") But with over two hours of singing,
perhaps that was just a way to perform more songs. Meat sounded more emotional
than ever doing "Anything for Love" and "Objects." He's
perfected the pained, quivering bellow.
I was surprised to see Meat do the fake encore (you know, when they pretend
they're done but they're just waiting for you to cheer, and they still haven't
performed key songs so you know they saved them for an encore). I guess
that's just unavoidable in modern music exhibition. The second encore with
a Rolling Stones cover was a nice treat though.
For those interested, the complete set list, to the best of my memory, was:
All Revved Up with No Place to Go intro
Paradise by the Dashboard Light
You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth
Out of the Frying Pan (and Into the Fire)
I'd Do Anything For Love (but I Won't Do That)
Rock N' Roll Dreams Come Through
Objects in the Rearview Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are
Seize the Night intro
The Monster Is Loose
Bad For Good
If It Ain't Broke, Break It
Blind As a Bat
Bat Out of Hell
Two Out of Three Ain't Bad
Life Is a Lemon and I Want My Money Back
Stay tuned for updates.