Happy New Decade!

While everyone is wishing everyone else a happy new year, it’s up to me to notice that were are in fact entering a new decade, the 2020s. For me, this marks a time to look both forwards and back. One realization is the fact that just a year in a half into the new decade, I will have been on the Earth for six full decades. Therefore, I am starting to think about the future in a totally different light. I don’t want to sound morbid but I realize that there are more decades behind me than in front of me. While, I’m hoping that I will be around for awhile, I have taken the first steps towards preparing for the finale. I have contacted the officials at Bloodstock and I’m awaiting for an official response. If it’s a go, when I do depart this Earth, it will be in my will that my younger son, Will, and my stepson Teal, take my cremated ashes to the festival and have them poured from the main stage. Teal says, it’s all very heavy metal.

This brings me to my first point. The twenty-teens saw a lot of great rock and metal gods and goddesses leave us. It all started with Ronnie James Dio in 2010 and continued for the rest of the decade where we lost Lemmy, David Bowie, Keith Emerson, Malcolm Young and though I wasn’t a fan, George Michael just to name a small few. I could do a post on just a list of those who passed this decade.

Enough of the morbidity for now. As I reflect back on the twenty-teens, I have come to the conclusion that it was my most metal decade since the 1980s! Completing the writing and subsequent publishing of “Rock and Roll Children” in 2010 was the start of the my return to all things metal. It was the summer of this year where I attended my first Bloodstock Festival. Except for seeing Judas Priest, Megadeath and Testament in concert, the year before, I hadn’t been to a concert in nearly two decades! That all changed with the publication of my book. Throughout the teens, I went to five Bloodstock Festivals, (two were just for the day) and two Download Festivals although one of those was just for the day. I also went to several more concerts as well as seeing AC/DC tribute band, Hell’s Bells, on a number of occasions.

True, I believe the 1980s was the golden age of heavy metal and the twenty-teens gave me the opportunity to see many of the bands I rocked out to in the golden decade once again before we all retired. Saying that, I missed Slayer in the 80s but I got to see them four times in the teens, making up for it. However, I also discovered many new bands which I got to post about. The biggest honour was to be invited to the album launch for Black Emerald’s debut album. I’m still waiting for Slave to Sirens to invite me to their UK debut. Anyway, enough of me prattling on, I decided to pay homage to the teens with a trip through the decade with many pictures.


My first gig review on 80smetalman. Creep Show at Trillian’s in Newcastle, Aug. 2012


Hell’s Bells, Feb 2013


Black Emerald at Bloodstock 2013


Exodus, Bloodstock 2013


My friend Frank Formica, doing his karaoke show in New Jersey. Nov, 2014


The only decent shot I got of Jill and she has her back to me. Huntress at the Thekla in Bristol. Jan 2015


Johan Hegg leading his troops, Amon Amarth, Jan 2015


Armoured Saint establishing their dominance Bloodstock, 2015


Overkill playing In Union We Stand. Bloodstock 2015


Near the end. Tirvium, Bloodstock 2015


Corrosion of Conformity wowing the crowd. Bloodstock 2016


Witch Tripper made the perfect start to the day. Bloodstock 2016. Note: Witch Tripper have since released an album


Twisted Sister on the farewell tour. Bloodstock 2016


More Ackercoke, Bloodstock 2016. This one’s for Heavy Metal Overlord as it was he who first told me about this band


Joe Duplantier hammering out a solo. Gojira- Bloodstock 2016


Orange jacket with matching shorts, an interesting choice of wardrobe for Howard H Smith    Acid Rein Bloodstock 2016


Ghost Bath soothing the afflicted, Bloodstock 2016


Anthrax, Bloodstock 2016


Lips and Roberson going for it, Anvil live in Gloucester, October 2016


Sabaton leads to victory. Download, 2017


Mike Muir and Co, Suicidal Tendencies- Download, 2017


A good shot of the band, Sum 41- Download 2017


Greywind making their mark, Download 2017


I also got to see some wrestling. Ruby Riot would eventually get the win. Download, 2017


Devin Townsend belting out another guitar solo. Download 2017


Michael Starr sings while Satchel hammers a solo. Steel Panther- Download, 2017


Don’t forget, there are three other great musicians in Alter Bridge, Download 2017


More Steve and Joe. Aerosmith- Download 2017


Simon has the pipes. My 2013 Bloodstock discovery, Black Emerald, album launch party in Reading. Feb. 2018


Mille supports while Sami shreds. Kreator, Download 2018


Marilyn Manson commands the stage. Download 2018


Ozzy’s kick ass show. Download 2018


Feed The Rhino welcome everybody to Bloodstock 2018


Suicidal Tendencies set a record for largest crowd at the Sophie Lancaster Stage. Bloodstock 2018


Better pics with Doro Bloodstock 2018


Levermann and Kersting leading from the front. Orden Ogan- Bloodstock 2018


Alestorm on stage with a lot of flying inflatable objects. I discovered Pirate Metal at Bloodstock 2018


A great shot of them. Israeli band Orphaned Land- Bloodstock 2018


Chris in his coat. This was the third time I saw Fozzy in this decade and their 2018 Bloodstock performance was definitely their best.


Underside show that you can rock in Nepal. Bloodstock 2018


Welcome Mr Big. They proved their were worthy to play Bloodstock in 2018


Coming down to the final tour. Slayer in Cardiff. Nov, 2018


Another great metal discovery. Lebanese metal band Slave to Sirens 2018


A non-metal discovery when I was in the US. Megan Knight Aug. 2019


My sister and her husband introduced me to the music of Hannah Wicklund when I went to the States in 2018. I got to see her live in Oct 2019.

I hope you enjoyed this tour of the twenty-teens as much as I did. I know I’m getting older and won’t get so many of these great experiences in the new decade but that doesn’t mean I won’t get some, I will. I wish all of you a happy new year and hope for your continued support for years to come.





























































14 Responses to “Happy New Decade!”

  1. Nice recap, Mike! Happy New Decade! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Here’s to another decade of metal!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. That is a lot of shows! I hope the new roaring ’20’s bring the same.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow… is there anyone you’ve not seen that you want to (that’s still with us)

    I can just imagine u blowing into everyone’s faces when the inevitable day comes…! True rock N roll

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Come on, you’ll make 130 easy!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Here’s to the new decade!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A great look at the decade of gigs you’ve been to. Hopefully there are many more ahead, Michael – Happy New Year and Decade!

    Liked by 1 person

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