JULY 29th 2013
Review By: Metal Mom
Photos By: Char Tupper

This festival has been around since it was first founded in 2005 by Dave Mustaine (Megadeth). Gigantour has also given many artists their first break on a national festival tour. And this year is no exception. The tour kicked off July 3rd in Gilford, NH and wraps up Aug 11th in Toronto, Canada. With this years tour Megadeth has also teamed up with Artist Arena to give fans the Ultimate VIP packages, including premium tickets, meet and greets, exclusive gifts and more. This show is I think one of their best, considering they have some heavy hitters on the bill…such as Black Label Society, Device, Hellyeah, and Death Division, which by the way were all picked by Dave Mustaine himself. With this kind of lineup, you are going to bring in a lot of fans, ones from Ozzy, Disturbed to Pantera and Metallica and everything metal/rock and in-between.

First band is DEATH DIVISION and they are a newer metal band out of Hollywood, Calif. It has some names in it that you should recognize too, like bass player Jerry Montano (Danzig, Nothingface, Down&Dirty), drummer Tim Yeung (Morbid Angel, Divine Heresy, Hate Eternal, Nile). If it’s heavy and extreme with some melody that you are looking for, then this is the band for you. A great choice for starting off the night.

HELLYEAH comes up next. Who doesn’t know this heavy-hitting, in-your-face, feel good rock and roll band. This is a band that’s truly a super group, considering who plays in it, like vocalist Chad Gray, guitarist Greg Tribett (Mudvayne), Tom Maxell (Nothingface) Bob Zilla (Damageplan), and non other than Vinnie Paul of Pantera/Damageplan. I am a huge fan, and see them every time they come to town. They never disappoint, lots of energy, great songs, and by looking at the crowd and the mosh pit, everyone else was enjoying their set as well. It’s really a party time feel when they hit the stage. Always a great performance. But you can’t go wrong with a band with these members and a touch of the sound from these other bands intermingled in.

Now on stage next should have been NEWSTED,  but from their facebook page, came this “ Hey friends...I'd been feeling a bit under the weather while performing the most recent Gigantour shows so I went to the Dr. on my day off today & I was diagnosed with walking pneumonia!!! So under doctor's orders, I'm taking a week to rebuild...my apologies to our Canadian brothers & sisters in regions where we will not be appearing this week. I'm gonna work on keeping me alive so together we can keep the metal alive!!!! Cheers to all!! Jason “ So sad to say we didn’t get the experience of hearing/seeing this band on the tour.

Next is DEVICE, surprise, I did not know, only because this was the first time I had head the name Device, but hard rock icon David Draiman (Disturbed) is the singer. Well I am a Disturbed fan, so I was more than happy to check out these guys for the first time. I was not let down, I thoroughly enjoyed their set. Its like an experimentation of sounds put together, a little dark, some heavy, melodic and why not add some industrial into this mix, and what do you have - DEVICE. Their sound is an excellent collaboration of  all that. I will say that I now have another band on my list of listening pleasure. Its always great to have a band that’s a little different, but damn good so that you have a variety of music to listen to. Excellent performance.
BLACK LABEL SOCIETY, this band needs no introduction, as vocalist Zakk Wylde has been with Ozzy for over 20 years, and has acquired a name for himself. They have many multi-platinum albums under their belts. Looking around the floor and the stands, I see a whole lot of Berzerkers (fan base), all with the latest BLS t-shirts. That says a lot in itself. Lets not forget the other members who make up this band, Zakk may pull the fans in, but it’s the whole band that make it what it is.  The venue filled up more when they came out on stage, people were standing everywhere, and of course starting off their set with Canada’s national anthem, well they know how to get the crowd going. Great touch. But the crowd were on their feet the whole set. Of course there were many solos, and squeals to be heard this night. I do enjoy that, but one of the solos was just a tad too long for my liking. There is a lot of talent in the band, and you don’t need to do so many solos, because you have what it takes anyway to carry your set through and have everyone still standing and singing. Don’t get me wrong here, this was an excellent performance,  a variety of songs, moving around on stage. BLS never disappoints a crowd.

Up next and last for the night, is of course a heavy metal band that has been around since 1983...guessed yet. You know, the one that started this tour all up in 2005 MEGADETH. They each entered the stage with ice fog flowing over the stage and over the edge, making for a very interesting look to the members coming out. There were huge screens behind them, video screens, always changing images. And I really don’t need to say more, its Megadeth, you know that they always execute their shows to perfection. The floor and stands even filled up more once they came on. It’s no wonder, they played a variety of old and newer songs to every ones liking.  I haven’t seen them very often, and every time I do, I am amazed at how good they are. They know their work, and deliver an outstanding set to their fans. They have 13 albums out there, and just released their 14th.  Sometimes there is a lot of controversy around Dave, but forget all that, it’s all about the music, what you listen to. And he has that nailed down. Otherwise he wouldn’t be where he is today with the band. I enjoyed the set, I enjoyed the big screens behind to watch once in awhile, I prefer watching the band members do their stuff on stage. But it was an added bonus. Excellent show.
Do I have anything negative to say, no, because each and every band performed to their best, from what I saw. All the bands I really enjoyed. So made for a great evening, especially when it was only 8 minutes away from my home. Bonus for sure. But I would have travelled into Vancouver if it had been there. I heard all good comments outside, although I did hear that they would have liked it to have been longer. The show started early , 4:30pm so of course it ended early, but it works out well for people who need to go to work, but need their fill of a great concert. This was only my 2nd Gigantour, and it won’t be my last. This years tour was amazing, and it is not often I enjoy each band on the tour. Thanks everyone, and see you next year.