I really want to agree with you but... when were they played live?
I think they are - River has a really fast tempo perfect for live performances and a slow chorus, but it worked with Lord Of Light and Public Enema Number One, while every part (
chorus, melodies, the ''oh-oh'' part and the part before it) in Shadows is great for concerts.
Don't get me wrong, it's one of my favorites as well and I'd love for it to make the list. It's just difficult to properly predict how the next setlist is going to look like and I fear, because of the Senjutsu and SIT songs, that they're gonna take a look at some older classics, rather than a reunion song. Hopefully I'm wrong, but I don't wanna get my hopes up and end up disappointed.
You could be right, AMOLAD tour was also without any other Reunion song other than the ones from the album and the idea for the tour was similar -> 5+5 songs. I hope they play one too.
there's lots of more boring songs they've played live.
The only not so good live
songs Maiden have played imo are: Tears Of A Clown, The Legacy, Benjamin Breeg, Educated Fool and The Aftermath.
HCW is fantastic live song
Yup. They could replace it with Sea Of Madness if it's too fast for the band nowadays, but then the 5th song would be CSIT (or Deja-Vu, which is unlikely because I think they won't debut 2 songs live and because the song is without a proper solo).
I think you need to kick off the encore with a bang right out of the gate or with a good intro tape to ramp up the anticipation. Number of the Beast, The Trooper, The Evil That Men Do and Aces High were quite good at that.
EDIT: Then again, I've been predicting Alexander the Great to kick off the encore next year and that one plods around a bit to start.
Journeyman worked great as an encore opener. ATG will work everywhere.