Let me give some background of my musical tastes so those who are not interested can stop reading now. I am almost strictly into metal (30 yrs old). My tastes waiver ever so slightly; for instance I love the Porcupine Tree dvd-audio, as well as Hotel California, Dark Side of the Moon, and I have a few classical cd's as well. But for the most part, metal is my thing. My absolute favorite music are Metallica's 2nd through 4th albums. I also have and love everything Dream Theater has ever done. Other bands that I have been into for quite some time include: Iced Earth, Tool, Fear Factory, Slayer, Pantera (for some reason I don't care to listen to them anymore), Iron Maiden, old Megadeth, AC/DC, Type O Negative, and Queensryche. Some bands that I have discovered more recently include: In Flames, Arch Enemy, Green Carnation (one album), Killswitch Engage, Nevermore, and I was late to the party for early 90's Sepultura. I just bought Death's Perseverance and I can't believe I waited so long to buy it, it's right up my ally. Two bands that really stick out to me that I can't stop listening to right now are After Forever and Opeth. After Forever's new album is a little disappointing, but their first two are amazing. I have seen so many live concerts that listing them would take much longer, and I want to get to the point. Let's just say that I have had plenty of experience at metal shows and I know how to critique what I hear at a concert whether it's in a stadium, arena, or small club type venue which is what this was. A little over a week ago, I drug my wife to go see Iced Earth. This is the only band that I have liked for years that I still haven't been able to see live, mainly because they don't tour around here often. Anyway, the setting was perfect. The concert was in an old theater which is now a bar/dance club in Lawrence Kansas and the turnout was not very good. Tim Owens (the lead singer who formerly sang for Judas Priest - you know, the whole Rock Star movie plot thing) even said "wow, feels like we're playing a private party tonight. Anyway, I have never heard a band sound so good in my life. Keep in mind that I have seen my favorite band Metallica 4 times - those shows were not as good as this one. Tim's voice sounded so good. He was always right on tune, and he hit ALL the super high notes (and there were many of them) with such ease, it really looked very easy for him. That's the thing about metal vocalists, live they usually pale in comparison to how they sound on cd. That's just part of why it was so good. John Schaffer on guitar was impeccable. Iced Earth uses a lot of triplet style, thrashy riffs (imagine Iron Maiden combined with old Metallica and your pretty close) that sound like they would be impossible to play live. I have Iced Earth's live cd and had always assumed that a lot of doctoring went into it because it sounds so good. Well, let me tell you, that really is how they sound live (actually better) and I found myself shaking my head in awe during the concert because it sounded so good. I often have that disappointed feeling right after a band I like starts playing its first song of the night. It's like "so this is what they are going to sound like...). It's never a huge letdown, but I have to admit that for most bands that's how it is. I'm not saying it's not worth seeing them, it's just not as good as you hoped it would be. Then there are a few bands that didn't give me that let down feeling. The ones I can think of right now are, Metallica, Tool, Dream Theater, and surely some others that I can't think of right now. With the Iced Earth concert, it was the first time that a band far exceeded my expectations. Not only that, but they sounded so good that I didn't even mind that much that they didn't play one single song off of my favorite album of their's, Burnt Offerings. Even my wife, who was dragged against her will, was impressed. She said after that she recognized a lot of the songs because she had heard me playing them at home and she said they sounded pretty good (huge praise from her). She also couldn't believe Tim's voice (she also seemed to like the fact that Rock Star was based on his life - she didn't know that before). Anyway, if anyone is still reading, has anyone else seen this band or has anyone been to a concert that blew them away like this?