Metallica Leave Their Mark on US Bank Stadium

It moved very quickly from buzz, to announcement, to who ended up being the lucky ones to score tickets? The fact that this would be Metallica’s only summer performance in 2016 drew a lot of attention, but add in Avenged Sevenfold, Volbeat and billing it as the inaugural show at the new billion dollar US Bank Stadium (new home of the Minnesota Vikings) — now you’ve got a historic offering.

There was plenty of excitement amidst the pre-show activities being held outside the stadium as 50,000 black concert t-shirt wearing head-bangers of all ages converged on downtown Minneapolis ready to rock.  The massive stadium felt a little light on attendance during Danish Metal act Volbeat’s opening set, but it was a solid effort. Guitarist Rob Caggiano paid tribute to Prince by sporting a “Purple Rain” t-shirt that paired nicely with his signature series purple ESP axe.

There were noticeably more bodies in the seats for Avenged Sevenfold, with many of their exclusive fans in the building specifically for their set, but also excited for the main event. The real fanatics were likely enjoying their second AX7 performance in a matter of days after 93X announced a free show at First Avenue on 8/18. The band seemed very much back at home Saturday night on the big stage doing their pyro-filled full production show.

The looming question seemed to be whether or not veteran rockers Metallica would be up to their usual high level of output after not playing live most of this year. Any doubters were quickly silenced within the first couple notes as the masters came out guns blazing, full of energy and attitude. Singer James Hetfield displayed a unique combination of angst and joy and seemed to be really enjoying himself as he led the charge. Although the long locks of guitarist extraordinaire Kirk Hammett are showing a little grey (not in a bad way), his shredability has not declined in the least and he did not disappoint. Bassist, Robert Trujillo was just fun to watch as usual considering he plays his part in the band so well. Never one to be overshadowed, Lars Ulrich played with great enthusiasm as expected and is still one of the best behind the kit at firing up a crowd.

No doubt this was one of the biggest shows the Twin Cities had to offer this year and I believe it lived up to the hype and paved the way for what I’m sure will be many more big time events at this spectacular new venue. Patrick Dunn review and photos!!!!!