Trollheart's Iron Maiden Thread (Genre: Heavy Metal)


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Thread: Trollheart's Iron Maiden Thread (Genre: Heavy Metal)

  1. #1
    Offline: Depressed Trollheart's Avatar
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    Trollheart's Iron Maiden Thread (Genre: Heavy Metal)

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    I think it's probably likely that even those who hate, or know nothing about Heavy Metal know the name Iron Maiden. It's just like Metallica or maybe Slayer, one of the names that tends to stand out in the genre. And with good reason. Maiden are one of the originals, having come up at the time of the very birth of the NWOBHM (that's the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal to you), an era that sort of came at the tail-end of the explosion of anger and rebellion and, let's be honest, some very bad music (death threats to my inbox please) that will forever be known as Punk Rock.

    I'm not fan of Punk in general (oh no! Couldn't you tell from the above?) but even I have to admit that it did give the then stagnant and complacent world of rock music a well-needed kick in the arse. Now, for those of you who don't know, I'm a proghead, which is to say, my primary love is progressive rock music. Genesis, Rush, Marillion, Spock's Beard, all that good stuff. And yet there are some prog bands I never got into. That, however, is another story. But even I could see (though I were but knee high to a grasshopper at the time, having been born in the early sixties) that prog music had essentially disappeared up inside its own rectum. The emphasis now seemed to be on who could get the longest songs written (Yes's Close To The Edge is one long song!) and who could present the best light show or visual effects, as well as, possibly, who could gain the most weight. The music suffered, and the charts teetered under the massed weight of these overblown, self-indulgent bands who were totally out of step with what was happening, and didn't even know it.

    Something had to be done.

    And it was done. Gleefully taking a sledgehammer to convention, the screaming hounds of Punk arrived, kicking arses and, well, probably not bothering to take names, cos that's not very Punk now is it? However, as I said, I was not a fan of the Punk ethos, or their music. But they did give rise to the NWOBHM; bands which were really more "hard rock" or edging towards the "heavy metal" side (a term coined by the godfathers of the genre, Black Sabbath, although it had been first mentioned by sixties rockers Steppenwolf in their classic "Born To Be Wild") and who could play better than most Punk bands, took the energy and attitude of Punk and melded it to hard rock and the emerging heavy metal riffs, and so were born a whole slew of bands, coming out of Britain, taking on the mighty hard rockers of the USA and champing at the bit to be heard.

    Some of these were good, some were bad, some were awful.

    And a few were quite extraordinary.

    One such was Iron Maiden, who would go on to dominate totally the soon-to-be-huge Heavy Metal scene, and who, even today, are still synonymous with the very best of Metal. Sitting atop the metal throne, they have sold to date over 100 million albums, can still be guaranteed, even after over forty years in the business, to pack in any venue they choose to play,and have the respect of both musicians in and outside of the genre, fans and critics. They are, if any band can be, the epitome of the true Heavy Metal band.

    Discuss these icons of Metal here with me, or just sit back and allow me to introduce you to one of my favourite bands of all time.

    Full Album Review Index

    Iron Maiden (1980)
    Last edited by Trollheart; September 17th, 2019 at 09:38 PM.
    Come away, human child to the waters and the wild
    With a faery hand in hand.
    For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand. - WB Yeats "The Stolen Child"

    I drink to forget, but I never forget to drink.

    "If the real Jesus Christ were to stand up today
    He'd be gunned down cold by the CIA" - The The, "Armageddon Days Are Here (Again)" - Mind Bomb, 1989


    The most destructive force on the planet is not nukes or global warming...it is the human ego. - Ralph Rotten

  2. #2
    Oh god.... Eddie!!!

    Maiden's riffs are instantly recognisable, but their drum beats too with Run to the Hills are cracking. They're a special one for me, Number of the beast and 'for the devil brings his beast with wrath" quote in particular just really wicked on the headphones.

    We had a rocker's night every Friday at the local back in the eighties, and the cover bands for Iron Maiden were godawful, lol. But this album stays with me today. One of my favourite authors: Shaun Hutson (horror) also used to listen to these guys when he was writing, and I'd listen to them as I read his work. I'll still ref these guys in my own fiction with one of my drummer MC's and Run to the Hills.

    I miss the old record shops and queuing outside for hours to see which band members would drop into market their albums. I met Bob Catley from Magnum at one of those, and... wow... some things you just don't forget.
    "You don't wanna ride the bus like this,"

    Mike Posner.



  3. #3
    Offline: Depressed Trollheart's Avatar
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    The Story of the Beast
    Iron Maiden 1975 - present


    Part One: Killers Running Free On the Rue Morgue: Formation and the Di'Anno Years (1980-1981)

    Formed in 1975 by bass player Steve Harris, Iron Maiden went through a few guitarists, singers and drummers before they came up with what would be their first “real” lineup, under which they would record and release their first ever recording, an EP called The SoundhouseTapes, which rapidly sold out. Two of the tracks on that EP, “Prowler” and the eponymous “Iron Maiden”, would later feature on their first album, which they would also self-title. In 1979 Maiden signed to the huge label EMI, and had two other tracks included on a heavy metal compilation album called Metal For Muthas. These were “Sanctuary” and “Wrathchild”, the latter of which would again feature on their debut album for the label.


    In 1980 Maiden had the following lineup: Steve Harris (bass), Dave Murray (guitar), Clive Burr (drums) Paul Di'Anno (vocals) and Dennis Stratton (guitar), though Stratton left the band a few months later, to be replaced by Adrian Smith, who remains with them to this day. The album was a huge hit, with its raw power and yet melodic tracks, and Iron Maiden became one of the bands to spearhead the New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) which signalled a renaissance of the heavy metal movement in the UK and led to the formation of some major bands.


    The debut album featured a scary creature on the cover, a half-skeletal, half-humanoid monster with spiky hair (which would later become long hair), who would become the band's mascot and sigil, and would feature, in different guises, on every single Iron Maiden album cover. They called him Eddie the 'ead, though he was usually just known as Eddie. In keeping with the theme/layout of each album Eddie would take on different characteristics. For Powerslave, with its mystical and eastern themes and its title track written about an Egyptian god, Eddie was a pharaoh on the cover, while for Somewhere in Time, with its futuristic setting, he was an alien hunter. Here, he is just seen looking out at you from the cover, standing in a street at night and looking very evil and scary. He looks like he's ready to kill.


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    Eddie was the creation of artist Derek Riggs, who would go on to illustrate almost all the Maiden sleeves and bring his often warped sense of creativity to each new one. One thing was certain: a Maiden cover was never boring! But what about the music? Well, as mentioned, it was raw and powerful, with a double guitar attack that would become the trademark of Iron Maiden, but I personally found the production very shoddy. Notable tracks from the album are “Phantom of the opera”, with its instantly recognisable guitar intro, which found fame when it was used for a Lucozade ad in the 80s. At the time, it was also their longest and most ambitious song, clocking in at over seven minutes and with distinct sections, or movements within it.

    Also on the album is “Transylvania”, an instrumental, one of very few that Maiden ever wrote. It's punchy, powerful and very much part of the Iron Maiden sound. They also included a ballad on the album, which again would be few and far between as Maiden reached for the heavy metal stardom that would be theirs. “Strange world” features some really nice echo guitar work from Murray and is almost prog rock in its theme of a world without laughter. It's also a very good vehicle for the softer side of Di'Anno's vocals, which apart from this song always seem to be a snarl. “Remember tomorrow”actually fools you into thinking it's a ballad, but you're soon disabused of that notion as it kicks into top gear and Di'Anno starts screaming.


    The album also features, as mentioned, “Prowler” from The Soundhouse Tapes and also the title track, which would become something of an anthem for the band. The band's second album, Killers was released the following year, and this time Eddie is seen as a homicidal maniac on the cover, sporting a bloodstained hatchet, and indeed referred to generally in the lyric to the title track. Another old song, the one featured on the compilation album,is included on this album, and indeed after the short opening instrumental “The ides of March”, it's “Wrathchild” that opens the album proper.




    This album was very much a Steve Harris project, as he wrote every song on it bar the title track, which was co-written with Paul Di'Anno. The album also features “Murders in the Rue Morgue”, based loosely on the Edgar Allan Poe horror short story, and another ballad, the superlative “Prodigal son”, but the title track is the crux of the album, and features Di'Anno in full madman mode, revelling in his narrative as the shadowy killer who ”Walks in the subway/ His eyes burn a hole in your back!/ A footstep behind you/ He lunges, prepared for attack!” The guitars on this song need to be heard to be believed. Di'Anno goes out in a blaze of glory, roaring his lungs out on the closer “Drifter”, and in fact his scream is the last sound on the album, bar the final guitar chord.


    So, that's a general introduction to the genesis of Iron Maiden. See you later for part two!
    Last edited by Trollheart; September 15th, 2019 at 01:42 AM.
    Come away, human child to the waters and the wild
    With a faery hand in hand.
    For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand. - WB Yeats "The Stolen Child"

    I drink to forget, but I never forget to drink.

    "If the real Jesus Christ were to stand up today
    He'd be gunned down cold by the CIA" - The The, "Armageddon Days Are Here (Again)" - Mind Bomb, 1989


    The most destructive force on the planet is not nukes or global warming...it is the human ego. - Ralph Rotten

  4. #4
    I saw Maiden in concert. I think it was Accept who opened for them.
    I like a few of their jams, they rock the house.

    But for metal, I was always a Dio/Sabbath fan. Not so much Sabbath with Ozzy...twas okay with him. More Dio Sabbath.
    Saw Dio in concert twice.



    Funny story, years ago Aerosmith was coming to town, and my buddy says "We should go see them before one of 'em OD's and they breakup like Zep did."
    So we go, and they were totally beat down. This was while they were still using, before they got famous a 2nd time. It was like that scene from Spinal Tap when they play at the Air Force Base, and it's this pathetic little crowd in a venue that looks like they host the Christmas festival...
    Anyhow, they looked so bad on stage, just draggin' ass, that I turned to my buddy and said "Looks like we were just in time..."

  5. #5
    Offline: Depressed Trollheart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ralph Rotten View Post
    I saw Maiden in concert. I think it was Accept who opened for them.
    I like a few of their jams, they rock the house.

    But for metal, I was always a Dio/Sabbath fan. Not so much Sabbath with Ozzy...twas okay with him. More Dio Sabbath.
    Saw Dio in concert twice.
    Hermano!
    I like Sabbath with Ozzy (who doesn't?) but yeah, for me, Heaven and Hell is where it's at. I thought Dio vastly improved Rainbow when he joined, and of course much of his work with his own band (first four, five albums and definitely the last one) are metal classics. RIP. Heard they've got a hologram of him touring now, with Wendy's blessing. Not sure how I feel about that. Wouldn't be the same.
    Come away, human child to the waters and the wild
    With a faery hand in hand.
    For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand. - WB Yeats "The Stolen Child"

    I drink to forget, but I never forget to drink.

    "If the real Jesus Christ were to stand up today
    He'd be gunned down cold by the CIA" - The The, "Armageddon Days Are Here (Again)" - Mind Bomb, 1989


    The most destructive force on the planet is not nukes or global warming...it is the human ego. - Ralph Rotten

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Trollheart View Post
    but yeah, for me, Heaven and Hell is where it's at.

    Heaven & Hell was always my favorite album of theirs (and song too.) The way it starts off slow and builds steam (much like Locomotive Breath by Tull.) By the end of the song it is flat-out jamming.

    When I listen to Ozzy Sabbath it always feels so dated.

  7. #7
    Okay, I said the name, so I have to post it now!
    Locomotive Breath by Jethro Tull (who was not actually one of the Beverly Hillbillies.)


  8. #8
    But if we are gonna talk about music that makes you get up and shake your factory equipment, then we should be talking about AC/DC.
    And not that Brian Johnson bilge!
    I'm talking about Bonn Scott.


  9. #9
    Offline: Depressed Trollheart's Avatar
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    I'm a bit of an oddity. I was never that into AC/DC, though I'm a rocker, and as you'll see as my prog history develops, I really really REALLY hate Tull. Could never stand them. Fun fact: I used to think Ian Anderson was Jethro Tull!
    Come away, human child to the waters and the wild
    With a faery hand in hand.
    For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand. - WB Yeats "The Stolen Child"

    I drink to forget, but I never forget to drink.

    "If the real Jesus Christ were to stand up today
    He'd be gunned down cold by the CIA" - The The, "Armageddon Days Are Here (Again)" - Mind Bomb, 1989


    The most destructive force on the planet is not nukes or global warming...it is the human ego. - Ralph Rotten

  10. #10
    Bruce Dickinson is a bit of a hero of mine simply because he's such a renaissance man. Vocalist for Maiden, pilot, fencer, historian - and he does it all with such easy-geezer-down-the-pub levity. He also introduced me to G.K.Chesterton. But I also love Tull. Ian Anderson is a wonderfully erudite, witty man. And of course you know how I appreciate a baroque flourish. Here are the two of them singing together in Canterbury Cathedral.




    Hidden Content Monthly Fiction Challenge


    Beauty is nothing but the beginning of terror which we are barely able to endure, and are awed,
    because it serenely disdains to annihilate us.
    - Rainer Maria Rilke, "Elegy I"

    *

    Is this fire, or is this mask?
    It's the Mantasy!
    - Anonymous

    *

    C'mon everybody, don't need this crap.
    - Wham!





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