BEST & WORST: The Highs and Lows of the Maiden England World Tour

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The Maiden England World Tour is over! We longed for it for years, we geeked out about its potential when it was finally announced, and now it’s time for a recap: Here are the highs and lows of the 2012-13 tour, including everything from stage production to hairstyles!

By all accounts the Maiden England World Tour came to a spectacular finale in front of 60 000 crazy spectators at the Estadio Nacional in Santiago, Chile on Wednesday October 2nd. A year and a half of conquering the globe (again!) has finally come to an end.

(EDIT: Just a little while after publishing this piece we learned that the Maiden England tour will have another leg in 2014. So, at some point we’ll get back to that…)

Manager Rod Smallwood has praised the tour as a huge success!

The initial US leg of the tour kicked off in Charlotte, North Carolina on June 21st 2012 and the band has since visited most of the major markets in Europe, North and South America. Band and crew staged a total of 80 concerts over the course of the tour, playing to roughly 2 million fans in the process. Along the way it might have been hard to keep track of stand-out gigs – just try these spectacular shows on for size:

The sold-out 56 000 capacity performance at Friends Arena in Stockholm, Sweden; a triumphant return to Donington; a long-anticipated show at the gigantic River Plate Stadium in Argentina; a third appearance at the legendary Rock in Rio festival; and not to forget – the mammoth Battle of San Bernardino in California. Over 30 000 people showed up there, making it the biggest American headline show in the band’s glorious history.

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Bruce Dickinson led Iron Maiden into the Battle of San Bernardino, in one of the numerous stand-out shows of the 2012-13 Maiden England World Tour.

Overall the ticket sales have been outstanding judging by the current state of the market. Most of the European arena shows were sold out well in advance and a lot of the big outdoor shows were well attended, with sold-out shows at Eden Stadium in Prague, Czech Republic as well as in Singen-Aach and Oberhausen in Germany. The Maiden England tour has topped the Billboard Hot Tours ranking twice, with reported revenues of a total of 41 million dollars so far. The second leg in North America and the South American shows are still not reported.

But technicalities aside! As always when the great Iron Maiden head out on tour there are tears of joy from some fans, and grievances from others – mostly in regard to setlist issues. What was our favorite song? How was the stage show? Who had the best hair in the band? Here are some of our thoughts on the highs and lows of this massive tour.

We go by the scale we usually apply to reviews:

6/6 means Masterpiece,
5/6 means Great,
4/6 means Good,
3/6 means OK,
2/6 means Disappointing,
1/6 means Crap.

STAGE SHOW
The recreation of the 1988 Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son production, so brilliantly put to film in the Maiden England concert feature that gave the 2012-13 tour its name, was eagerly anticipated. We have argued earlier that the original production was among the very best of Maiden’s classic 1980s era. How did the recreation hold up?

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Bruce in the shadow of a menacing Seventh Son Eddie during one of the absolute high points of the 2012-13 Maiden England show.

Torgrim: To be honest, I’m in two minds about the stage set for the Maiden England tour. The original was arguably one of the most elaborate and spectacular productions to date. The word from the band was that they had modernized it and made it even bigger. Sadly I can’t condone that sentiment. The toys for this tour, including the three Eddies and the fireworks and pyro, are by far the best they’ve ever had. The lighting rig is also sophisticated and functional, but the actual stage is a letdown.

It’s more or less painted white sheets on the same old steel construction. All the sculptures and backlights are gone. All the white drapes are adding to the static feel. It lacks the atmosphere of the ’88 tour. And the same old Eddie motives are getting very old by now. Think outside the box next time! That was what made you the greatest live band on Earth to begin with. The Eddies and the pyro come to the rescue here.

Torgrim’s Verdict: 4/6 (Good)

Christer: When we judged the 1980s stage productions, I was of the opinion that only the 1984-85 Powerslave production was better than the 1988 Seventh Son extravaganza. So I had high hopes for this tour, and some of it delivered: The lights were great, the pyro was great, and the big Eddies were among the best the band has ever done! But alas, the stage design came down to “past Eddies in ice” draped over Maiden’s regular rig. There was no repeat of the great atmospheric backdrops or the back-lit ice formations of 1988, and simply not enough of the Seventh Son visual concept to it!

As Torgrim explains, the stage show alternated between BEST and WORST in a frustrating way…

Christer’s Verdict: 3/6 (OK)

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Afraid To Feature Icebergs: The Maiden England stage production at its worst. At its best it looked like the picture at the top of this feature, Eddie and liberal doses of pyro saving the day.

SETLIST
No aspect of a Maiden tour will be as heavily scrutinized and debated by the hardcore fans. For some there will be goosebumpy inclusions and heart-wrenching omissions, while others insist that they are happy with whatever Maiden decide to play. We have shared our thoughts about our dream Maiden England setlists, but how did the actual 2012-13 setlist make us feel?

Torgrim: As a best-of setlist, Maiden England is superb. But in the light of the previous History tours, it lacks focus. The omission of Infinite Dreams is a travesty and although Afraid to Shoot Strangers is a much welcomed epic, it would sit better on the previous album tour. Still the set was relentless and to my surprise played-to-death songs like The Trooper actually shone on this tour.

Other highlights included the monstrous rendition of Seventh Son of a Seventh Son. Phantom of the Opera was a powerhouse on the latter half of the tour when they started to nail it. Not to forget – the long lost The Prisoner. The biggest surprise was that they retired the setlist regular Hallowed Be Thy Name for the first time in history.

Torgrim’s Verdict: 4/6 (Good)

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The Number Of The Beast, as performed above, has only been omitted once – on the first leg of the A Matter Of Life And Death tour in 2006. The Maiden England tour saw the first ever omission of Hallowed Be Thy Name.

Christer: BEST of the set – Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son! WORST – the exclusion of Infinite Dreams! We know that Infinite Dreams and Hallowed Be Thy Name were replaced during rehearsals, most likely by Afraid To Shoot Strangers and the recently overplayed Running Free respectively. Which means: Even if Infinite Dreams had been performed, in place of Afraid To Shoot Strangers, the set featured only 3 (!) songs that hadn’t been played in the previous four years (!) …

This can only be described as plain lazy.

Cold facts: Only 3 songs that had not been performed in the previous four years. That’s the worst showing of rare material for any of the History tours, also if we include the 1999 Ed Hunter tour, and the 2003 Give Me ‘Ed Till I’m Dead tour. Simple as that.

Maiden called the tour Maiden England, they finally released the classic Maiden England concert on DVD, they talked up the tour as a focus on the late 1980s…  And then they promptly let underplayed classics of the era like Infinite Dreams and Stranger In A Strange Land lie, rather featuring Fear Of The Dark and 2 Minutes To Midnight yet again.

If vocal issues was the reason for dropping Infinite Dreams, which might have been the case, it’s still impossible to ignore the fact that the band didn’t include Maiden England classics like Still Life and Killers, which would have been fairly easy on Bruce Dickinson’s voice. This is the key disappointment with the Maiden England tour for me, even though I couldn’t possibly argue that the set wasn’t good.

It should have been a masterpiece.

Christer’s Verdict: 4/6 (Good)

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Drummer McBrain boasted that they had dusted off Phantom Of The Opera for this tour. Wow. It hadn’t been played for 3 years. So that’s Maiden’s idea of “rare”…

PERFORMANCE QUALITY
Some prefer Clive Burr, some dislike Janick Gers, and some think Bruce Dickinson sounded much better in 1985 than he does today. But the current line-up have generally been praised for the quality of their live performances over the past decade or so. How did they sound on stage in their latest outing?

Torgrim: There has been moments on this tour when I’ve wondered if the band has started to lose some of the spark. The tempos on some of the songs have been a bit on the slow side and even Bruce has struggled with some songs. Also the lack of chatter and interaction with the fans has sometimes given the feeling of the band being at work. But then they turn everything around and hit you in the face! Judging by a lot of the performances on the last leg of the tour, they have been brimming with energy again and the spirits have been as high as ever. Especially Bruce never fails to amaze with his endurance and youthfulness.

There has been a major flaw with this tour though, and that is the absence of longtime sound engineer Doug Hall. The sound on both the 2012 and 2013 treks has been riddled with problems and the complaints have been really harsh. Maiden needs to address this problem.

Torgrim’s Verdict: 4/6 (Good)

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A still youthful Dickinson wielding the microphone stand and brimming with energy. Unfortunately, the band’s performance would too often be let down by sub-par sound quality on the Maiden England tour.

Christer: The current Maiden line-up (going into its 15th year now!), when firing on all cylinders, is right up there with the two classic line-ups of 1982-1984. The way they have performed greats like Revelations and Rime Of The Ancient Mariner in later years is nothing short of spellbinding. This tour’s performances of Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son rank among their best ever. Goosebumps!

Understandably, Bruce finds some things a little tougher now he’s 55. Which is why this tour’s repeat of Aces High, cool though the pyro was, seemed extra unnecessary. This incarnation of Maiden should have been let loose on some more of the 1980s rarities, because they frankly sound unbelievably good at times!

Christer’s Verdict: 5/6 (Great)

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Three guitars, bass and drums, delivering a great rendition of Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son for the first time since December 1862.

STAGE CLOTHES & HAIRSTYLES
Some dye it, some don’t. Some cut it, some won’t.

Torgrim: Is Bruce growing his hair back? It can certainly look like it. Maybe it has something to do with him not piloting airplanes at the moment, or maybe he’s had a fight with his hairdresser, or maybe he’s just plain lazy? Who knows? It did at least give him the opportunity to pull off the Misfists do for Seventh Son of a Seventh Son.

However, the wardrobe for this tour has been surprisingly tasteful – at least by Maiden standards, that is. Mostly black and fairly levelled trousers this time.

Torgrim’s Verdict: 4/6 (Good) (Sorry Bruce, Nicko’s blue shorts and tank top pulls you down this time)

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Can I Play With Sombreros? Not your regular fashion icon, a now more long-haired Bruce Dickinson. Here he is singing his heart out in Mexico City.

Christer: It’s no longer the age of spandex, so the Maiden boys are generally not as offensive in their choice of clothing. But it’s obvious that the only one in the band with honest hair is Bruce Dickinson – you can actually see that he’s graying! Guitarist Dave Murray came into focus in 2013 for his new and shorter haircut, which probably took about 10 years off his age. Good move!

You rest assured that there will be an in-depth feature at some point in the future about Maiden pants! The 1980s provide an endless parade of terrifying trousers to consider…

Christer’s Verdict: 4/6 (probably as good as it gets)

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Steve Harris (right) hides his graying hair beneath a bucket of dye, but keeps it as long as always. Dave Murray on the other hand is sporting a fresh cut. And obviously another liberal dose of coloring.

THE FINAL VERDICT
We’ve longed for it ever since the Maiden England DVD was postponed back in 2008. Now it’s over. How do we sum up our feelings about the Maiden England World Tour?

Torgrim: All in all a fantastic tour for the casual fans. A great opportunity to hear all of Maiden’s biggest hits in one go. Very entertaining visually with all the pyros and the brilliant Eddies. A tad too safe on the obscure stuff for us old-timers, the stage set is too basic and the sound has been horrible on a lot of occasions. But the actual show has gotten better and better the further down the line the tour has spiralled. The band has been on fire over the past months! And it is also good to see that the band, despite a tough market, is bigger than ever in some territories.

As a regular best-of tour it would have scored an extra point, but in light of the other History tours, this one is the least eventful.

Torgrim’s Final Verdict: 4/6 (Good)

Christer: Amazing Eddies, lights and pyro! An emotional return for The Prisoner and Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son! But I’m sorry to say, despite all the greatness, I will remember the Maiden England tour as a bit of a lost opportunity. This was the occasion for Maiden to dot the i’s and cross the t’s of their 1980s History run. Had they let Infinite Dreams, Killers, Still Life, Stranger In A Strange Land and (impossibly, it seems) Flight Of Icarus be included, or maybe even resurrected 22 Acacia Avenue

The Maiden England World Tour was one of their BEST, there can be little doubt of that. But a promise was made with the 2005 and 2008 History tours, and the WORST aspect of this tour is the fact that Maiden didn’t quite live up to that promise in the end.

Christer’s Final Verdict: 4/6 (Good)

CHARLOTTE NC 'MAIDEN ENGLAND' tour 2012 Photo by JOHN McMURTRIE

Thank you, good night! Iron Maiden and Eddie take a bow, and the Maiden England World Tour 2012-13 is history.

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55 thoughts on “BEST & WORST: The Highs and Lows of the Maiden England World Tour

  1. best of this tour in my opinion: Maiden playing seventh son and prisoner, about “afraid to shoot strangers” was a nice surprise but I didn’t like the new versions
    the pyros, even though they overused them and Bruce kept talking about them especially in “phantom of the opera”. It would be much cooler if they simply ignored them..
    Nicko’s drumset with some awesome artwork.Also the fact that during the later part of the tour he was almost unmistakable.
    Bruce’s awesome frizzy hair after he wipes them, during “the clairvoyant”.

    Worst of this tour: SETLIST Maiden ignoring once again that they have more classics in their 80s albums than run to the hills the trooper wasted years and the number of the beast
    Slow tempos especially on songs like aces high and the clairvoyant, accompanied by lame excuses that it was in benefit of “letting the songs breathe”, even though it was obvious that the real reason was stamina issues.
    STAGE PRODUCTION : Stage looks like a big box filled with white eddies and stripped out of any great potential props there could’ve been, like icebergs, or even floating lighted waters (waterfall type), fountains etc.. it’s maiden afterall they deserve a bit too much.
    Also the only Eddie better than the old “Seventh tour” was the “iron maiden” eddie holding the embryo… The great feeling of the turning round iceberg- “seventh son”- “prophet” Eddie couldn’t be captured by the new plasticy one on “Seventh Son”, nor by that weird glued arms awfull walking Eddie on run to the hills.. Even the candles of “Seventh tour” produced better flames than the recent ones..
    Bruce struggling maybe for the first time even on songs like ” trooper” and “fear of the dark” that used to be a piece of cake for him to handle.. “Aces High” this late was just a mistake. I mean even in 1984 he would be out of breath If it would be at the Encore. His performances improved as well on the later part of the tour.
    Random, improv solos by everybody… I mean that was pretty common by Janick but especially Adrian and even Dave seemed to follow his path on this tour.. Sometimes it would work, sometimes it seemed like if it wasn’t for Nicko’s excellent timing the rest of the band would be lost after those “new” solos they would come up with.

    My verdict 3/6

    • also at the worst daves haircut in my opinion (and my friends’).. He looks like my aunt after a really bad plastic surgery. 😛

      • Why was Bruce sporting a mad scientist’s hair after ‘Seventh son of a seventh son’ I have asked myself? Why? Because they are playing ‘The clairvoyant’. And Bruce is a Van der Graaf Generator fan. And Peter Hammill sang I prophesy disaster and then I count the cost…. I shine but, shining, dying, I know that I am almost lost. in ‘A Plague Of Lighthouse Keepers’, which is basically what ‘The clairvoyant’ did. And for that reason Bruce introduced the song with that quote in Stockholm in 2003 (I bet Deadly Sins was there ): http://youtu.be/K-oBH8IcJhA

        What has this to do with Bruce’s hairdo for ‘The clairvoyant’ in 2013? Because if you touch a Van der Graaf Generator that is what your hair ends up looking like!!!

        I know, I need to get out more, but I am a scientist!!! 🙂

        Bruce, in case you are reading this, I hope I was right! 😆

    • Interesting points, SakaRaka7, but I’d like to defend Bruce. It’s obvious that he’s struggling more now than 10 years ago, which is not strange in light of the fact that he’s 55 years old!

      Compared to his struggles in the 1984-88 period, the current ones are inconsequential. But he did have problems getting through Hallowed Be Thy Name in 2011, which is most likely the reason why they dropped it for this tour. Doing Aces High in the encore is crazy from a vocals perspective, but from about midway through the European leg he actually started getting really close to his 2008-09 performances on that song.

      Good point about Dave and Adrian’s solos. That’s a major difference from the spot-on soloing (much of the time) on the SBIT tour.

  2. I really liked the tour and think the setlist worked amazingly well at the three gigs I went to (Lisbon, Donington and Zagreb).

    Setlist wise, personally I would have dropped ‘Aces high’ (I should say there were no timing issues at the gigs I went to; the song was played quite fast!) and had ‘Hallowed be Thy name’ instead, and probably would have included ‘Infinite dreams’ and ‘Die with your boots on’ in lieu of ‘The number of the beast’ and ‘Fear of the dark’, but as far as metal shows goes, it is difficult to think of a better show.

    I thought the stage set was really cool and the reworked ‘frozen’ versions of the classic backdrops added a nice touch to Maiden’s theatrical performance. Not too many icebergs, which was good (let’s avoid it looking too Spinal Tap!). In addition, the light show was AMAZING.

    Regarding the band, I would have preferred if Adrian had stuck to some of his original solos, but he created some rather nice new ones. I also felt that Bruce’s performances, at least in the gigs I went to, were considerably better than during the UK leg in 2011. He sometimes struggled, but as Christer said, his struggles were inconsequential compared to his live perfomances from 1985-1988. We can consider ourselves lucky the guy is still singing that well!

    If Somewhere back in time was 6/6, this tour would probably be 5/6. To be honest, I enjoyed it more that the 2005 history tour, which was too short of songs off TNOTB and POM.

    • Good points! You’re on to the core of my setlist criticism in your last point there: Considering they have done 3 retro tours with a focus on the 1980s, it’s hard to accept the absence of 22 Acacia Avenue, Children Of The Damned (well, except the SBIT 2009 leg), Flight Of Icarus, Killers, Still Life, Stranger In A Strange Land, Infinite Dreams. Probably more that could be mentioned.

      • ‘Children of the damned’ was the highlight of the Maiden gig I saw in Bilbao in 2007. 🙂

    • I agree with you Ghost when it comes to Adrian and his soloing. It seems like he has a new found addiction for hammer on’s and thus feel the need to change up all of his solos, which in some cases works and in some it doesn’t. Adrian has always been the rock steady player of the three. Now he seem to lose the plot and focus at times, even in regulars like Wasted Years. It doesn’t help that he’s been low in mix from a FOH perspective either. Odd indeed. Dave has more than often been out on a limb lately, but that’s more his style. The irony of it all is that Janick is more structured than ever 🙂

      • I’d really like a live DVD so I could appreciate these changes better. I sometimes find it hard to make a judgement about these things without a proper mix…

  3. Good reviews guys. I saw the second night at the O2, and would just add that a) I loved the new backdrops with the Eddies-in-ice, that was a nice touch, and b) Bruce looked like Ray Reardon during SSOASS (Google images for you youngsters!) and Einstein during the Clairvoyant. The rest of the band seemed to find the hair funny except, of course, Steve!

  4. Great points, guys! I pretty much agree with everything that’s been said. However, I’m finding it hard to to be more harsh with my final judgement. I don’t think I could give anything higher than a 2.5/6 overall for this tour for failing to live up to the original.

    • To those moaning about the setlist, I guess you are thinking about the “Maiden England” VHS, because the setlist for most of the “Seventh tour of a seventh tour” included the usual suspects, the classic tunes that Maiden tend to play frequently. ‘Killers’, ‘Die with your boots on’ and ‘Still life’ were only played on the UK leg of the tour.

      I’d say that the setlists nowadays are more inventive than in the 80s, where you knew the encore was going to be ‘Run to the hills’, ‘Running free’ and ‘Sanctuary’…

      Thank Eddie for the 1999 reunion!

      • No, I’m thinking about the fact that the last history tour had ELEVEN songs in common with this one. I’m thinking about the fact that Nicko called it “the middle years” of Iron Maiden, and Steve “an 86-88 kind of vibe” yet they played more songs each off Fear of The Dark, Number of the Beast and Iron Maiden than they did Somewhere In Time. They left out Infinite Dreams, a live staple of said tour and a single from the video the tour was based on, which to me is like leaving Powerslave out of SBIT.

        Besides, it was called the MAIDEN ENGLAND tour, was it not? Not the “Seventh Tour of a Seventh Tour… again… tour”

      • Hehe… Seventh Tour Of A Seventh Tour Again Tour… Read that and picture Eric Idle saying it. 😀

        I’m with Adam on this one, although my final verdict is a considerably higher score than his. “Moaning about the setlist” is a derogatory way of putting it, Ghost. I think people have good reason to criticise this particular setlist, because of the promise of the previous two History tours and this third tour’s title. Not to mention the way Maiden talked it up, which Adam refers to. But like I said in the article, I can’t argue that it’s not a GOOD set.

        The problem is: In light of the two previous History tours, this one doesn’t dot the i’s and cross the t’s. Just chew on this: ONLY 3 SONGS IN THE SET HAD NOT BEEN PERFORMED IN THE PREVIOUS 4 YEARS. And that’s counting Afraid To Shoot Strangers!

        Those are pretty damning numbers right there, when there are so many outstanding 1980s songs available to them that would fit the concept perfectly.

        I mean, I actually find it quite shocking when Nicko talks up the return of Phantom Of The Opera as one they have “dusted off” for the tour. First, it has nothing to do with Maiden England or the late 80s. Secondly, at the point this tour started – it was only 3 years (!) since they last performed it.

        I don’t think it was unreasonable to expect some of these during the run of 3 History tours: Killers, 22 Acacia Avenue, Flight Of Icarus, Stranger In A Strange Land, Infinite Dreams. Even To Tame A Land and Still Life, particularly considering the band’s confessed love for Piece Of Mind.

        All of you know that I’m not one of those who always complains about the setlist. On the official forum I was usually among those who defended Maiden against what I consider unfair criticism on this topic.

        But with the Maiden England setlist I think the band deserve criticism.

      • Maiden said the show would be based on the Maiden England video and promised they were going to play about two thirds of that set. Guess what? What we got was what they promised. I personally do not mind the lack of songs off “Somewhere in time”, as that album is, by far, my least favourite from the classic line-up and, although ‘Infinite dreams’ would have been nice, I do not rate the song as highly as ‘Powerslave’ (or many other songs from the 80s).

        As I have said before, although I enjoyed the Early Days tour, that has to be my least favourite history tour. Sure, there were some gems played (‘Remember tomorrow’ and ‘Where eagles dare’ were worth the price of the ticket alone; ‘Revelations’ was great too, but that had also been played in 2003 and would be played in 2008) but, on the other hand, there were too many songs from “Fillers” (in my humble opinion any tune from “The number of the beast” or “Piece of mind” is better than ‘Another life’ or ‘Drifter’…), and the shows were relatively short for Maiden standards. Thankfully they stopped playing ‘Charlotte the harlot’ early enough. You know, opinions are like arseholes. 😆

        That being said, replacing ‘Aces high’ with something like ‘Flight of Icarus’ and ‘The number of the beast’ with ‘Still life’ for the Maiden England tour would have been nice. 🙂

  5. Something I’d like to say cause of some harsh thinks said (by myself also) about maiden in this site..
    In the end, Maiden are the best band ever in my book, and they deserve to make some “errors”. I seem to be quite harsh on them in this blog, but it’s only cause I love them so much… Other bands like metallica etc.. can get away with poor picked, close minded, and 90% hits- setlists, or poor albums, cause we all know that they “sold out” and had mainstream radio-tv air play at one point in their carrer… .But when Maiden, that has always been true and close with their fanbase, makes a difficult for us to understand decision seems like a major hit to our hearts, if you know what I mean….
    In conclusion no matter how many versions of the trooper, fear of the dark, number of the beast we’ll hear nowadays, there will always be us, the fans that’ll be there to listen to, and will be there to follow the band that made us (at least me), love this kind of music, in the last years of it’s career.. We may complain over every think we don’t like but at the end of the day we’ll be all blood brothers !!!!

  6. Ghost, opinions are one thing. Then there are facts. My opinion is the same as yours when it comes to fillers in the Early Days set. But it can’t be argued that the Early Days set was repetitive and short on rare songs.

    When it comes to the Maiden England tour, the numbers state that it repeated 2/3 of the previous History set, and only featured 3 songs that hadn’t been performed during the two previous tours. So it’s a fact that the setlist was repetitive and short on rarely performed songs.

    You’re right that they were playing about 2/3 of the original Maiden England video as advertised. But Adam is also right about how they talked the tour up as being a focus on the late 1980s period. And I’m right that they only included 3 songs that hadn’t been played in the previous 4 years, and one of those songs was even out of the period.

    Only 2 in-period songs not performed in the previous four years? That is absolutely just cause for criticism, in my opinion.

    They played 2/3 of Maiden England. They also played 1/2 of Live After Death. And more than 1/2 of Donington Live 1992. Therein lies the lack of focus that Torgrim refers to in the article above.

    It honestly bothered me.

    • Next Maiden tour same setlist but: out Seventh son, Prisoner, Afraid to shoot strangers, in Wrathchild, Hallowed be thy Name, and they will dust off a very rare classic … “dance of death” … This tour will be called ” Maiden Japan” and will be especially about the 1990-2010 period , according to band and manager…

    • Christer mate, please don’t take it personally. You are one of the nicest Maiden fans I have ever met, and I can sympathise with your feelings about not having heard ‘Infinite dreams’. ‘Flight of Icarus’ and ‘Infinite dreams’ are the only songs from the 80s that I really wanted to hear live after the reunion and they haven’t played. 🙂

      That being said, “Somewhere back in time” was my favourite history tour even though it was the tour with less songs not previously played by this line-up of the band (only ‘Rime of the ancient mariner’ and ‘Moonchild’). For “Maiden England”, my second favourite history tour, we got three. 😉

      “The early days” tour, while not short on rare songs (‘Murders in the rue Morgue’, ‘Another life’, ‘Prowler’, ‘Remember tomorrow’, ‘Where eagles dare’ and ‘Drifter’ had not been previously played by this line-up), it was rather short in terms of the time they played (90 minutes at Bospop festival; Bruce did not talk as much as in Ullevi and I time gigs!). Furthermore, some of those rare songs were from their 1981 album, which I affectionately call “Fillers” because I do not rate it that highly! So, in my humble opinion, there were lots of unplayed songs in 2005, but that did not make it better for me. 😉 Had they played ‘Flight of Icarus’, ‘Children of the damned’, ‘The prisoner’ and ‘To tame a land’ it might have been a different story.

      Bottom line is we are incredibly lucky Maiden are still around, alternating tours with different material, and stronger than ever before. Let’s hope they call it a day at the top of their game.

      Peace mate, and up the irons! 🙂

      • Peace!

        I’m not taking anything personally, though, I was just stating numbers and facts, and saying we are all right about different things here. But the point is: Maiden England was the most repetitive setlist of the History tours. Fact. This was disappointing. My opinion. 🙂

        You’re right that Maiden England featured one more not-performed-by-this-line-up track than SBIT. But Maiden England featured only 2 in-period tracks that hadn’t been played on the previous two tours, and that’s the key point.

        SBIT featured 5 in-period tracks that hadn’t been performed for a decade or more, and another 3 that hadn’t been performed for three tours. It featured only 6 songs that were performed on the previous History tour. So it was clearly less repetitive than Maiden England in those terms.

        We are lucky to have Maiden around. Fact. But that doesn’t mean everything is without fault and that Maiden couldn’t do better. My opinion.

        The frustration for many fans is how close they came to pleasing everyone with the Maiden England set, but that they stopped short. Going along with most of the band’s thinking, except the lack of focus, this set would not have been beyond the realm of the realistic:

        MOONCHILD
        CAN I PLAY WITH MADNESS
        THE PRISONER
        INFINITE DREAMS
        STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND
        THE TROOPER
        THE NUMBER OF THE BEAST
        PHANTOM OF THE OPERA
        AFRAID TO SHOOT STRANGERS
        KILLERS
        WASTED YEARS
        SEVENTH SON OF A SEVENTH SON
        THE CLAIRVOYANT
        IRON MAIDEN
        FEAR OF THE DARK
        THE EVIL THAT MEN DO
        RUN TO THE HILLS

  7. Christer, the only SBIT tour songs that had not been played for over a decade were ‘Rime of the ancient mariner’ (last played in 1987) and ‘Moonchild’ (last played in 1988). The other songs that had not been played for a while (‘Aces high’, ‘Powerslave’, ‘Wasted years’) were part of the Ed Hunter tour in 1999 (i.e. 9 years before SBIT). 😉

    Nitpicking, I know, but I am a researcher. :p

    • 9 years is a prettylong time considering the unavailability of good pro-shot- professional footage of the “Ed-huntour, and the shortness of this “reunion” tour…. In sbit tour listening to “aces high”, and “wasted years” was rare and refreshing, no is just like christer said plain repetitive.
      Christer you might’ve just come up with the ideal setlist, maybe maiden should hire you to come up with their setlists

    • Which leavees us with 2014 🙂

      What’s next? If they go out on another leg of the Maiden England tour, there are bound to be changes. Probably along the lines of the combo tour A Matter of the Beast in 2007 or a revamped ME setlist along the lines of the 2009 version of SBIT.

      Do you think it will be for better or worse? What period are they likely to combine it with? 90’s? Not very a very good selling point for what will most likely be a short stadium/festival tour.

      These songs might get omitted from the current set:

      – The Prisoner
      – Phantom of the Opera
      – Seventh Son of a Seventh Son (it’s expensive to freight all the props for a short tour)
      – The Clairvoyant
      – Aces High
      – Running Free
      – Wasted Years

      • I’d love a tour with 1 song off of each album not necessarily singles but great songs to keep everybody happy… My suggestion is

        01. Wicker man
        02. Man on the Edge
        03. Coming Home
        04. The Trooper
        05. Paschendale
        06. The Evil That Men Do
        07. The Reincarnation of Benjamin Breeg
        08. Killers
        09. Powerslave
        10. The Clansman
        11. Wasted Years
        12. Fear of The Dark
        13. Iron Maiden
        Encore
        14. The Number of The Beast
        15. No Prayer for the Dying
        16. Hallowed Be Thy Name

      • I’d pay to see that, SakaRaka7!

        This IS INDEED the question, Torgrim! I can’t figure out what Maiden might want to do next summer. Does anyone have any sort of realistic idea about what could be the concept…?

      • I do not have a clue what they will do next year, but in 2007 they did freight the AMOLAD tank to every show, so I would not be so sure SSOASS might be omitted if they were to do another “Maiden England” related tour.

      • The AMOLAD tank was just an easy steel construction that could be taken apart into small bits. And it was the key element of the show – The Big Eddie. For Seventh Son, you have the candles, the massive Eddie, all the pyros and the big keyboard rig with the hydraulics etc. Not saying they will skip it, but if they’re trying to make it easier budget wise and for the load ins and load outs on the festivals it might go. However, that will probably mean that the whole theme will be watered out as well.

    • I know, Dani. 😀 Those were the only two SBIT tracks not previously performed by the current line-up. I don’t argue with that. But, being a researcher, are you willing to concede this: SBIT featured 5 in-period tracks not performed in nine years or more, and a further 3 that hadn’t been performed on the previous two tours, and only repeated 6 of the songs in the previous History set? Those numbers clearly make the SBIT set less repetitive and thicker on rare songs than Maiden England.

      Can’t believe we’re not in agreement on that, whatever our opinion about the set. (Which I rate GOOD, anyway…)

      But the tour’s over, so maybe the argument should be too. 😀

  8. The thing that would be really strange about another Maiden England leg is obviously the fact that Maiden have never stretched a concept over three calendar years. But then again, this year was the first time ever that a set didn’t change at all during a break of about 6 months. So if it’s a tour of strange firsts: Will 2014 give us another leg of Maiden England, with the same stage production and the same setlist?

  9. I’m sure the Maiden England tour is over. They said so on the main page. I’m betting next year will see the release of a ME ’13 Live DVD.

    If the band decides to tour, we’ll probably get either A: Donington ’92 DVD release and a somewhat 90s-focused setlist (but still with lots of boring classics 😉 ), or B: we will get a tour similar to EH/GETID with a smattering of tunes from the band’s entire history (but still with lots of boring classics).

    • Well, Rod says they want to tour every year, so we should probably know pretty soon if there are dates coming up… Since Donington 92 is ready to go, a set based on that might work fairly well. But most of it was already in the Maiden England set. 😀

      And I’d love a DVD for this tour. In fact I’ll be very disappointed if there isn’t one. But what show is a likely candidate? We know Kevin Shirley was on site for Donington, Sao Paulo and Rio.

      • I think something like this would go over fairly well with summer US audiences:

        BE QUICK OR BE DEAD
        FUTUREAL
        TWO MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT
        HERE TO ETERNITY
        HALLOWED BE THY NAME
        WRATHCHILD
        AFRAID TO SHOOT STRANGERS
        HEAVEN CAN WAIT
        THE SIGN OF THE CROSS
        MAN ON THE EDGE
        THE NUMBER OF THE BEAST
        FEAR OF THE DARK
        IRON MAIDEN
        TAILGUNNER
        BRING YOUR DAUGHTER TO THE SLAUGHTER
        RUN TO THE HILLS

      • I know Voodoo Six recorded their Stockholm show profesionally for a DVD, so I would not be suprised if Maiden had recorded that one too using the same crew.

  10. Btw, Christer, Tony Newton (bass player for Voodoo Six and Maiden’s recording engineer) said on facebook and twitter a couple weeks back that he’d be recording the band in Sao Paolo and Rio.

    • Right, so both he and Shirley were on hand for those two gigs. I’m hoping for Sao Paulo actually, since it had more of Maiden’s own ligthing rig than Rio did… I’m so tired of the DVDs not featuring the full production.

      • True. I think a Donington DVD would be great too, because they could do a whole box set of Donington performances… including long-lost 1988 footage… in my dreams… 😛

  11. Right, Adam! The Iron Maiden Donington Legacy Collection 1988-2013. Coming to a dream near you! 😀

    • Featuring the original History Part 3 Interviews, all existing Somewhere On Tour footage, and rehearsal footage of Prodigal Son and Alexander The Great as extras!

      I’ll take three, please. Where do I preorder? 😛

  12. Dani, was the Voodoo Six recording for a DVD, not just an album? In theory Maiden could do a live DVD from any show since it’s all archived as sound and footage. But they usually do some extra camera production when then plan on releasing stuff. Flight 666 was the exception, if I’m not mistaken?

    Stockholm was a good performance and it was indoors with the full production. Although Eddie’s brain didn’t catch on fire at the end of Iron Maiden… 😛

  13. Just a thought as well- a 90’s/Donny 92 History Tour would be a great low-budget affair, because of how stripped down the stage show was at that time originally. It wouldn’t be too hard for them to throw that together for next summer.

      • well I’d pay only to see them have a go at Be quick or be dead in 2014 😛 but fear of the dark (aside of the great live anthem) was not an album to come back to (history – touring wise) and I don’t think that Maiden at this time, having built such a great name among young fans would go and tour an album like fear of the dark or No prayer.. They are bellow the status they want to “put out there” especially coming to the end of their career.. so we may get the donington 2013 dvd straight away, maybe + the donington 1992 as an extra dvd along with history part 3 witch will cover all of the 1990s till the reunion, in a 3dvd box set… Not to shabby in my opinion, for a dvd release, especially compared to the “Maiden England” one.. My guess is that the tour will be in the likes of Give me ed, with LOOOOTS of overplayed classics, even though my “dream come true” setlist would be something like the one I mentioned before…
        And If they’ll do the atrocious thing and tour Maiden England again they’d better see Christer’s setlist (also mentioned above) and not do the same thing over 3 years… I doubt if that’ll be as succesfull as this one, and that they’ll get away with “lazyness” in more than one tour. Especially on hard markets like the Us’ and also all over europe with this major financial crisis.. They certainly have to put a lot of thought and effort in their next tour-dvd, and not base things once again only to their huge name..

  14. As I said, I’d pay money to see this:

    BE QUICK OR BE DEAD
    FUTUREAL
    TWO MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT
    HERE TO ETERNITY
    HALLOWED BE THY NAME
    WRATHCHILD
    AFRAID TO SHOOT STRANGERS
    HEAVEN CAN WAIT
    THE SIGN OF THE CROSS
    MAN ON THE EDGE
    THE NUMBER OF THE BEAST
    FEAR OF THE DARK
    IRON MAIDEN
    TAILGUNNER
    BRING YOUR DAUGHTER TO THE SLAUGHTER
    RUN TO THE HILLS

    …but it’d be even better if they snuck in more off NPFTD (they won’t) or even some SIT (yeah right).

  15. Pingback: Kevin Shirley: Mixing Maiden show for a TV presentation. No new DVD after all? | maidenrevelations

  16. Pingback: FEATURE FRIDAY: Maiden England 2014 – what to expect? | maidenrevelations

  17. Pingback: ON TOUR: The End of the Maiden England Adventure | maidenrevelations

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