TeamRock review: THE BOOK OF SOULS

bookofsoulscoverTeamRock have published a review of Iron Maiden’s forthcoming album. And it’s bloody good too.

You must register to read it, but here is an early review of Maiden’s new album, The Book Of Souls. I suppose it could be gone by the end of the day, but it could also be authorised publishing to finally start some very late hype for the project.

The reviewer is Dom Lawson, and his main point is this: The Book Of Souls is Maiden at their very best, a blend of the post-millennium progressive epicness and the more direct heavy rockers of their classic 1980s heyday.

“Speed Of Light, Death Or Glory and Tears Of A Clown all climax at around the five minute mark, and all three are instant top-notch Maiden anthems, the shrewd songwriting hand of Adrian Smith making its presence felt and bringing plenty of that off-kilter edge that was sometimes missed during the decade he spent away from the line-up.”

This early review seems to indicate that the balance of styles is perfectly judged, something yours truly felt was less so on the previous album The Final Frontier, and the division of songwriting credits (no more than two members per tune) might have something to do with this.

Kevin Shirley also gets credit for his “powerful, unfussy production” here, and the little teaser we just heard seems to show this off. The pièce de résistance, according to this writer, is the album’s monumental conclusion:

“The longest song the band have ever recorded, Empire Of The Clouds is essentially an 18-minute heavy metal opera, replete with Dickinson on piano for the first time and sumptuous orchestral flourishes that add hugely to the song’s cinematic feel.”

It’s a 9 out of 10, Lawson says. And it sounds nothing like a band on its last legs, according to him.

Now, with management allowing this review to be published so early, it might have been inevitable that it would be a very positive and PR-friendly one, but we’ll find out soon enough.


13 thoughts on “TeamRock review: THE BOOK OF SOULS

  1. wow! if the Book Of Souls is something back in time to the 80es progressive Heavy Rock i will love this album more than enyrecords from Maiden sins the year 1988 .
    I have a feeling of somthing speceal but not new, the sound of the teaser is good hearing for sure..

    • I’m with you on this one.

      I’ve had mixed feelings about Maiden’s post-1988 output (the 1990’s you can just basically ignore), but since Bruce and Adrian returned, they’ve been branching out musically and really hitting their stride in some respects. Sure there are still flaws (overly repetitive choruses, etc), but the good overwhelmingly outweighs the bad and no-one does it quite like Maiden.

      I have a real good feeling about ‘The Book of Souls’ in a way I haven’t had in years, there’s a feeling that the band have crafted something very special this time out that will floor fans and quiet critics… between that and the upcoming new W.A.S.P. album ‘Golgotha’, there’s some great new music to look forward to…

  2. Here’s the full text of the Glide Magazine interview with Janick Gers (source link posted to Facebook page):

    It’s been an interesting year for one of heavy metal’s biggest bands. The members of Iron Maiden had just finished production of their 16th studio album in Paris at the end of 2014 when the band’s frontman Bruce Dickinson felt that something wasn’t right. A visit with his doctor confirmed that Dickinson had a cancerous tumor on his tongue and would have to undergo extensive medical treatment. This would be shocking news for anybody, but for the singer of the legendary band it was downright terrifying. Luckily, the tumor was caught in time to be treatable, but the news was alarming enough to cause even the band members to worry if this could be the end of Iron Maiden. Fans wondered how such fate could strike a performer who had just wrapped a massive world tour sounding better than ever and who, at the age of 56, still runs the equivalent of several miles during a single performance and is capable of putting performers decades younger to shame. Even though the album was in the can, the band put the release and a world tour on hold until Dickinson was given the all-clear.

    Fans of Iron Maiden are something of a cult, viewing the band as sacred deities of metal that can only be spoken of with complete respect and awe. For this reason there was little griping over the delay because fans and band alike would rather see the singer healthy and at the top of his game. Now that Dickinson is in the final stages of recovery, the album, called Book of Souls, is set for release on September 4th. It’s their first since 2010′s critically praised The Final Frontier. As one of the few people lucky enough to hear Book of Souls, I can honestly say it is worth the wait. Not only is it the longest Maiden album to date, coming in at a hefty 92 minutes in 11 tracks, but it’s unquestionably one of the most epic outings from a band that, even with over three decades under their belt, still continue to innovate their sound. Book of Souls finds every member of the band putting in an equal amount of creative energy. It is also the first Maiden album since 1984’s Powerslave to feature two tracks solely written by Bruce Dickinson, one of which comes in at just over 18 minutes, making it the longest song the band has ever recorded. In fact, there is only one song (“Tears Of A Clown”) that’s under 5 minutes – only be a second. Getting excited yet?

    As of now the band has wisely decided not to release any music from Book of Souls in advance of its release, a move that stands in direct contrast to today’s culture of advance streams, album teasers and other gratuitous hype builders. That’s why we turned to one of the band’s guitarists, the always eloquent Janick Gers, to fill us in on everything happening in the world of Iron Maiden and what we can expect from the band in the coming year.

    What was the experience of putting the album together like considering the circumstances with Bruce?

    Actually, nobody knew that Bruce was ill when we did the album. We put the album together between September and early December and Bruce was singing fantastic. In fact, he was staying with me and we were staying in the same hotel – the rest of the band were in different places – so we were going out and having a drink and a chat about how things were going. We were really happy with the album and his voice was sounding great and he was his usual bubbly self – excited about the album and we were having great fun.

    It wasn’t until afterwards when he got back to England that he said he got an abscess, which he’s had before and he had a couple of teeth taken out, and it came back. It was only then he said to me, “I’ve got this abscess back.” He couldn’t drink because he was on antibiotics and I thought that was strange because he said that last year. I didn’t have any clue, nobody had any clue and then we got a message from Andy Taylor, one of our managers, who told me what happened. I was in shock because Bruce was singing incredibly well. Obviously we had to just scrap everything for this year. We had a tour booked, and we said forget that. Bruce was very positive, he found it very early, and the doctor told him it was going to be curable. It was on his tongue, nowhere near his vocal chords, and he’s in the clear now. I saw him a couple of weeks ago and he was looking good. He was still a bit thin from his chemo; he’s not back to running a 10K yet, but he looks fine, he’s talking fine. I don’t know what his singing voice is like because he’s had radiotherapy on his throat so obviously his throat will be quite swollen. But when we did the album we had no idea about any of this, it only became apparent after we got to the end of the album. So it didn’t affect the album in that way, it’s just affected this year and the fact that we won’t be touring.

    One thing that stands out is that this is the band’s first ever double studio album and there are some real long songs on it, but long songs are not exactly a new part of the Maiden repertoire. Why do you think it took so long to make a double album? It almost seems strange that it took this long.

    This is a time when people’s attention spans are so limited, they’re so small and they’ve got the attention span of a gnat. This is a triple album in actual fact – it’s a triple vinyl album and a double CD. We just do what we want to do and we’ve always done that – we always kind of fight against the tide. It wasn’t that we set out to make a double album, we just brought so many ideas into the studio and they were all good ideas. Some of the songs weren’t that long when they came in but they ended up that long when we finished them. Everybody always brings in probably an hours worth of music. You might only want to use 15 minutes of it but you’ve got an hour of stuff that’s really good. It’s indicative of how creative everybody in the band is. This band’s been going a long time and we never have to scrape around because there are always so many ideas to use – melodies, tunes, themes. It just ended up we had 11 songs in 92 minutes, which is quite too long for a single album. I think it’s good; we just come in and try different things, and we never restrict ourselves in terms of melodies and tunes. If it’s long it ends up long, and it’s as simple as that. If it feels right, that’s what it is. This album just dictates where we are right now in 2015. We’re not a band that looks backwards, we always look forward and we’re always trying to develop new ideas, new strategies, new attacks of songs, and taking songs down different pathways. And I think this album proves that we’re still valid; the songs are powerful and edgy. There’s all types of different songs on this album and there’s almost something for everybody – classically influenced, jazz influenced, rock and blues influenced – it’s all there and it’s just indicative of what the band’s about.

    Was there ever a point when you and the band thought The Final Frontier would be the last Iron Maiden album?

    Truthfully, every album we do I think might be the last. With The Final Frontier we did quite a long tour. I don’t think we hit America with it but we hit everywhere else in the world, so you’re looking at a six or seven month tour and who knows what’s going to happen. You could fall out, some people in the band might not enjoy it anymore, so you always think this might be the last tour. We’re a band that’s been around a long time now, and just looking at what’s happened to Bruce, that shocked me to the core, I was devastated. That was a huge shock to everybody, so you never know when the last tour is. I hate these bands that go “this is our last tour” and they come back a year later with a new album and another tour. We go on as long we’re enjoying it and who knows when the last tour will be. You just make the best album that you can at that moment in your career. That’s why I never come out and say this is the best album we’ve ever made. You hear a lot of bands say that, but you should never say that! You say this is the best album at this point in time that we could make and I’m really proud of it.

    It seems like so many times bands say that and then their words come up to haunt them later.

    You just can’t tell. I’m proud of every album we’ve ever done, and every album we’ve ever done was a statement of what point we were at at that point in time. That’s all you can do. As a band you travel the world, you see a lot of things, you take everything in musically and sonically, and then when you come to write an album it all comes pouring out of you in the music. That’s where you are at the moment and if you’re proud of it at the end then that’s really the best you can do.
    Given al the crazy stuff happening in the world, there are a lot of gloomy things going on, and does that have an affect on the songwriting for you guys? Like do you think about current events and the state of things when you’re putting together songs?
    I think everything you see and do comes out in what you write. I think that’s just paramount and your feelings come out in the songs. We live in a time where everything has to be on the Internet all the time. You’ve got the 24-hour news that has to be updated every 5 minutes. Whether or not the world is as dangerous as the media likes to portray it, I don’t know. It’s always like that, so you tend to get this constant barrage of media attention around the world because we’re online all the time. So that’s got to have an effect. Everything you see, do, touch and feel has an effect on your songwriting, it has to. We try to look at everything in a positive light, and I think our music transcends the barriers of culture and can get through to anybody that wants to listen to Iron Maiden or wants to come and watch us play. It’s fantastic, and we have crossed a lot of barriers, it’s universal.

    I’ve always wanted to ask this since we’re on the topic of songwriting. Steve Harris usually does a bulk of the writing. What’s it like working on songs with him when he seems to sort of be the mastermind?

    I don’t see it like that actually. We bring songs in and you might bring a riff in that Steve gets off on and he wants to write some words to it. Or he might come in with an idea to go with it. There are no restrictions to the way we write. If Adrian [Smith] brings a song in, then Bruce might write with him or Steve might. I think it’s pretty open. You might bring an hour and a half of music in and only use fifteen minutes, but that’s great because you’re bringing lots and lots of ideas to it. With “The Book of Souls” I brought the music in for that and Steve had some great vocal ideas thematically, and we got together and rearranged it. He had some more choruses he wanted to put in here and there, and he might bring a few different melodies in that he wants to put on it, and then we put the song out. I certainly don’t feel an oppressive nature of Steve. He’s very positive and brings great ideas to everything.

    There’s an acoustic intro on “Book Of Souls”, a song you wrote with Steve Harris. Whose idea was that?

    I brought that in. I brought the song in and that was on the front of it. So generally with pretty much anything me and Steve write it means I’ve asked Steve to add some lyrics to it, and he might add some melodic ideas within the song as well. You might bring one riff in, and it might set Bruce onto something else and he might bring a new part to it. There are no limits, and it makes it really interesting because it never gets boring. You might bring a chorus in that Steve might like and put into one of his songs or whatever. It’s very free and easy what we do. I might write 10 or 12 songs and we might use one or two of them. For this particular album we worked like that, and all of us were the same, we all brought lots of extra stuff in. If everyone gets off on it, off we go. On a song like “The Red and the Black” Steve had it pretty pinned down what he wanted, he knew exactly the melodies he wanted to play. But then Bruce brought “Empire of the Clouds” where he had a pretty decent arrangement and then we just embellished the parts and that was what he wanted. Bruce and Adrian might bring a song that’s pretty solid and we just go and do it exactly as, so there’s no set way of doing it, and that gives you a tremendous array of musical ideas you can bring to it.

    One thing I’ve noticed is, to my knowledge, you haven’t released a single yet, which is pretty bold in today’s media landscape of singles and streaming. Is there a conscious reasoning behind this within the band?

    Well we didn’t want anything out while Bruce was recuperating. The album would’ve been out earlier in the year, but we pulled everything and we pulled the tour because we wanted Bruce to get better. To me that’s more important than anything, so we just held everything back. He’s clear now and the idea was to wait until September. I like the idea of getting an album when it’s released. Is that passé now? I don’t know, but isn’t it good to wait for something and get it all at once? That whole Internet thing has kind of spoiled it a little bit because it’s nice to wait for something and get it all at once as opposed to bips and bops at a time.

    So I have to ask, will the band be doing a world tour to support this album, and if so, can you talk about when that might happen and what fans might expect as far as a set list and stage theatrics and all that?

    It’s too early to tell but we want to do a tour and we’re looking at being out next year, probably late January or early February. Hopefully Bruce will be back to his normal self by then, he’s already looking really good and sounding great. It’s just a matter of getting physically back to what he was. So we’re going to sit back, put the album out, and hopefully do a world tour next year that will be based around the album.

    Compared to previous Maiden albums, the cover work for Book of Souls is stark and stripped down. How did that come about?

    Well the album title Book of Souls [is based] on the Mayan thing. That was the idea that Steve had for the tour and the cover. We got the idea and named Mark Wilkinson to do the cover art, and he’s worked with us before. It’s just a striking thing and it ties in with the Book of Souls and the mystical idea of the Mayans and the Aztecs. It also ties in with a couple of other tracks on the album. That was it.

    It definitely stands out compared to all the maiden albums that are filled with color and a lot of wild stuff going on and here you get just the one figure.

    Yeah, maybe he’s gone Mayan.

    The last thing I want to ask is, for you personally, if you could play one Maiden album in its entirety live, which one would it be?

    Wow. There are so many songs in the back catalogue! We went out and did A Matter of Life and Death in its entirety, and everybody said that would be commercial suicide. It was fantastic. I really enjoyed it and it really felt very fulfilling, but I think there are so many songs from our past career that, to do that, you’re leaving so many great songs out. I think it’s good to kind of mix and match as opposed to playing one full album. You’ve got a career spanning decades so it’s good to pick bits and pieces. The last two tours we didn’t do “Hallowed Be Thy Name” and two years before [on the 2010 Somewhere Back In Time Tour] we didn’t do “The Trooper”. Those are songs that people really want to hear. What we try and do is put six or seven new songs in and pepper it with older songs so everybody gets to enjoy the gig. You always want to play the new stuff and that’s what it’s all about because that’s where we are now. I’m not someone who looks back. There are a lot of bands out there that are a parody of what they used to be, they try and re-tie in the past, and I don’t think you can do that. You’ve got to look to the future. I’m very proud of everything we’ve done in the past, but you’re only valid as an organic band if you go with the now. It’s very important to go out when you have a new album out, play the new stuff and get it out there like where we are now. That way you don’t become a parody, you become valid in time that you’re around. This is 2015 and I think we’re a really valid band. This album is very valid; it’s powerful, it’s exciting, it’s thematic, it’s got everything you could wish for from an Iron Maiden album.

    • Yeah, it makes so much sense that management got upset about this coming out two weeks early. 😀

  3. It has been stated by members of Iron Maiden that this album was finished very quickly, and that most of the songs were written in the studio. In my opinion, when Maiden take their time to write new songs and to polish them up production wise, they usually end up with a stellar result, with Seventh Son being the perfect example of that. Although I expect The Book of Life to be a very satisfying affair, I don’t expect anything timeless from it, for the reasons stated above.

    • I don’t agree with that assessment, and I think it’s a common misunderstanding that Maiden work faster now than before.

      In this instance, all the members of the band had worked on material individually for a long time, and according to Janick they all came to the sessions with literally hours of material. Maiden started working together in Paris in early September and finished by mid-December. Some further work was done early this year.

      It’s true that they put the songs together in the studio, but it’s not true that the album was finished very quickly.

      (We should probably also take the “written in the studio” statement with a grain of salt. Reports from Bruce last summer said he had been writing with Adrian before the 2014 tour…)

      By comparison:

      The Number Of The Beast was recorded and mixed in five weeks. Piece Of Mind was written in January and recorded in February-March. For Somewhere In Time they did not have all the songs written before they entered the studio, although that recording was longer than usual. And Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son was recorded and mixed in about eight weeks, although most things were written before recording started.

      It’s probably also wise to distinguish “write” and “rehearse”. Even if something is not rehearsed before the band enter the studio, doesn’t mean it hasn’t already been written, which was probably the case with Somewhere In Time. Yet, Steve has been clear that writing for Powerslave was a mad rush and that he barely got through Rime Of The Ancient Mariner before hitting the studio.

      The major exception to all of this is The X Factor, which took 18 months to write and record. Virtual XI also took considerably longer than the 80s or 2000s albums.

      The sound of modern Maiden is a conscious production choice, championed by Steve Harris, not a result of how long the albums have taken to write and record. The band’s history proves that.

      • The meat of my argument regarding the new album having been written in the studio, is based on the following comment from Steve, as posted on the band’s website with the announcement of the new album: “We approached this album in a different way to how we’ve recorded previously. A lot of the songs were actually written while we were there in the studio and we rehearsed and recorded them straight away while they were still fresh, and I think that immediacy really shows in the songs, they have almost a live feel to them, I think. I’m very proud of The Book Of Souls, we all are, and we can’t wait for our fans to hear it, and especially to take it out on the road next year!” Since what Janick has said appears to contradict Steve’s comment, I agree with you that the statements should be taken with a grain of salt.

        Although I don’t disagree with the facts you presented regarding how long it took to record each album, I do stand by my assertion that Seventh Son, for example, reflects the extra care that went into writing and recording the album. Dave’s solos on the album are much more structured and thought out than before, and Adrian sounds like his usual brilliant self, with his “Only the Good Die Young” solo, among others, being a good case in point. Now compare that to the (not necessarily bad) off-the-shelf solos on “Speed of Light,” or the fact that the brilliant “Starblind” has some major issues with uneven compression in the middle of the song. Unless it was intended—I can’t see a reason why it would be—the latter is the kind of thing that should not have happened and would normally be the end of the career for whoever was responsible for the screw-up. To me, this is a sign that the final product was most likely rushed through the process to the point of overseeing glaring flaws. At the peril of digressing here, I also want to mention the Maiden England ’88 debacle, where, despite the claims that the Birch mix was left untouched, someone has obviously tampered with Birch’s work. Whereas Bruce’s voice was very prominent in the original mix, it was not only lowered in the reissue, but Bruce also sounds like he’s singing in a shower. The issue is immediately noticeable on “Moonchild,” but further makes listening to the beautiful “Infinite Dreams” completely unbearable. Birch’s production of the live album was purposefully done the way it was done, as, like on the studio album (SSOASS), he wanted the band to sound expansive and mystical, which he achieved by raising the drums and the vocals in the mix to create a thinner and clearer overall sound without sacrificing the cohesiveness among the instruments. The undisclosed tweaks on Maiden England ’88 are an example of Steve’s misplaced pursuit to give the band a more garage-y sound (if you listen closely, you’ll notice that even the guitars sound different, and whereas Dave’s guitar was louder in the original mix, Adrian’s guitar is louder on the reissue), which ruined the original artistic intent behind SSOASS and Maiden England.

      • Steve thinks the fans love what he calls a “live feel”. That’s why he always pushes statements about the songs having a “live feel” and this time that they where “written in the studio”. I’m sure some of them were, but it would probably be more accurate to call them “written and/or rehearsed” in the studio. Personally, I’ve never understood Steve’s attitude about a studio “live feel” since it seems to rest on the band doing things quickly and in very few takes, which seems to imply that they would lose their “live feel” after about 10 shows on a tour. I don’t get it.

        As for Maiden England ’88, I haven’t bothered listening to the stereo version since I never liked the mix of that show, to be honest. Personally, I suspect Steve had a lot to do with the original mix, this being at a point where he was about to take over Maiden productions more and more, and edited the picture himself. I think Shirley’s 5.1 remix of Maiden England is superb, however.

        I have no argument with your point about Steve pursuing a garage-y sound. I completely agree. It started, in my own opinion, with Maiden England, blossomed with No Prayer For The Dying, and hit an absolute climax with the 93-98 period, bookended by the worst-sounding Maiden records of all time, A Real Live One (and Dead) and Virtual XI

        Since this is the captain’s course, I don’t think it would be realistic to hope for better-sounding Maiden records than what we’ve had since Bruce, Adrian and Kevin joined the ship. 🙂

  4. I agree with your assessment. As a guitarist/musician myself, I can understand why the band have a desire to record albums that sound live and organic. However, to me, it was always a part of the excitement to hear a song in its polished, slowed-down version on the album, and then to hear the same song live played faster and with some minor deviations from the studio version. In addition to the production, I think that also Maiden’s approach to songwriting has changed. In the past, they’d write songs like “Where Eagles Dare” and “Still Life,” which are relatively cerebral and don’t necessarily sound like something that would translate well in the live setting. However, people kept going to their concerts nonetheless, because the songs were works of enduring heavy-metal art. Nowadays, the band write songs that move the crowds better at first, but have less fuel left in them once they’ve been given a few years to ripen. To give a couple examples, I’ll cite “No More Lies” and “The Talisman” as a case in point. I’m not 100% sure about “The Talisman,” but I doubt that they’ll play “No More Lives” ever again live. Luckily for us, however, despite this decline in songwriting quality, Maiden have gotten much better at writing about war. Songs like “These Colours Don’t Run” and especially “Mother of Mercy” are wonderfully colorful and textured impressionistic pieces that put the likes of “The Trooper” to shame, where “Mother of Mercy” always reminds me of Stephen Crane’s Red Badge of Courage.

    • But in naming a couple of tunes you don’t think stand the test of time, you also leave out a bunch that I personally think stand up incredibly well: The Wicker Man, Rainmaker, Paschendale, The Longest Day, For The Greater Good Of God… Such things will always be subjective, of course, but one thing is for sure: There is no band that can match today what people feel about their classic work in the past. No matter what KISS would or could write, it would never match how people feel about Love Gun or Detroit Rock City.

      • I hope I don’t come across as a nostalgic, as I really don’t consider myself as one. Although I do understand why people revere Number of the Beast and the rest of the post-Di’Anno–pre-Somewhere In Time albums, I personally try to see them for what they are: historically significant and at their time strong and novel albums that, however, come nowhere near the creative peak of SSOASS, the road to which was paved by Somewhere In Time. Overall, I think Maiden’s progressive leanings, including those of the post-reunion albums, are a quantum leap ahead of their classic material up to and including Powerslave and the right step in the right direction for this band in particular. But, with that said, you do raise a very valid question: Could it be that people generally feel that bands that have been around for a long time will never top their old material? Is it maybe because the long-time fans know the band well and know what to expect, and are therefore harder to impress? Could it be that good music simply needs time to age, thus making it impossible for new material to ever reach the status of a classic upon release and a few years after it? Or could it be that what’s new becomes stale after a while, so that we automatically view the old as better? Could be. I really don’t know the answer to that, but wish I did.

        For me, I’ve come to see things this way. A maturing band will be more confident, and as masters of their craft, will easily be able to deliver solid albums well into their late career. What they may not attain is that special thing called magic. Seventh Son of a Seventh Son was magical. The X Factor, though technically far inferior to SSOASS, was magical in its own way. The rest of Maiden’s albums, however, range from excellent to brilliant, but not necessarily magical, as magic happens when all the stars align right and we get something like SSOASS that seems almost humanly unattainable. When SSOASS was released, Kerrang! magazine was on the bus heading with Maiden to a German castle to join the listening party and to conduct the interviews proper. As this article mentions,, the reporters couldn’t help but gush over the band’s masterpiece. It was so obvious to everyone at the time of the release that Seventh Son was something special, that when someone dared ask Steve about the elephant in the room, namely, how he was going to top this, all he could offer was, “F**k knows.”

        I think that great bands can make great albums almost as a matter of routine. However, each time a new album, such as The Book of Life, comes out, the question, rather than being, “Is it going to be good?”, is, “Is it going to be special?” How and when that kind of creativity burst happens, I don’t think anyone really knows or can control, but it appears more likely to happen to a band rather in the first half of their career than in the second.

      • Personally, I put A Matter Of Life And Death into the category of “magic”, but most certainly NOT The X Factor. 😉

        I recently read the original Kerrang! feature you mention here, and it was conducted by Mick Wall. Personally, I found it completely embarassing. In my book, Seventh Son is definitely in the “magic” category, along with Piece Of Mind, but Mick Wall… Most of the feature is him bragging about getting drunk with the boys in Maiden, all the way from the airport in London to the castle in Germany. I think the piece veers between irresponsible on one hand, and boozed-up paid-up gushing on the other. How he feels about the new Maiden album is impossible to believe in, though he (obviously) stood by his word when he wrote the official Maiden bio.

        (Two years later, Wall was getting drunk with Steve in Portugal while gushing about No Prayer For The Dying for Kerrang!…)

  5. I agree with you on A Matter of Life and Death; it’s easily Maiden’s best and most consistent post-reunion album.

    Also, thanks for the info on Mick Wall. That is a Maiden revelation, indeed.

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