by Nathaniel Puente
Let's just cut to the chase and skip the long intro. Iron Maiden is the best band on the planet. They have released 16 albums containing 155 songs. Those songs are the greatest songs ever released in the history of time. I suppose that is just an opinion. You can agree with me if you have correct opinions. Obviously, there must be a best and worst song. There are also 153 others in the middle of that. So, why not put together a list ranking every Iron Maiden song? That's what we are about to put to the test on Heavy Metal Mania. With a "definitive" list ranking every Iron Maiden song, with ten per post. Those who do not agree with this list are encouraged to post their own in the comment section. Today's list will only include the final five songs.
NOTE: The song titles are also hyperlinks to the song on YouTube.
155. Chains of Misery - Fear of the Dark
Well, we had to start somewhere right? Chains of Misery comes in as the worst Iron Maiden song. It comes from my least favorite Iron Maiden album, Fear of the Dark, so naturally, the worst song would be derived from there. We must establish that even though this song is still last, it is still an Iron Maiden song meaning it is still one of the greatest songs ever written, it is just far inferior to every other one of their masterpieces. Bruce Dickinson and Dave Murray collaborated on this gem and as Bruce tells it, the song revolves around the devil's dastardly deed of making us do the wrong thing and holding us down by our "Chains of Misery." If you like subpar Iron Maiden songs, this is your jam!
154. The Man Who Would Be King - The Final Frontier
This is one of those 21st century Iron Maiden songs that makes you think they just make long songs just for the sake of it. Do not get me wrong, I love some of their longer songs such as "Rime of the Ancient Mariner," "The Book of Souls," "For the Greater Good of God," etc. but this one kind of drones on for way too long and I find myself asleep in the middle of it. The song is about a man who is a king of an unknown land who is seeking forgiveness after killing someone. The intro to the song is pretty cool, but like the rest of it lasts way too long.
153. Age of Innocence - Dance of Death
Would you believe I actually feel as I have ranked this song too high? One of the more boring Iron Maiden songs for sure came near the end of 2003's Dance of Death. Apparently, the lyrics are one of those "back in my day" deals as Steve Harris asserts that crime is much more rampant in the UK as when he was growing up. The lyrics take a jab at the British justice system or lack thereof. The subject matter of the song is a serious matter, but it can hardly save it from its rather uninspiring music. The only thing that can salvage the song is that drummer Nicko McBrain recorded a version of him singing the song as a bonus track on the "No More Lies" EP released in 2004. Nicko's rendition of the song is absolutely hilarious and is definitely worth a listen. It is rather ironic that they pick such a serious song to make a joke out of, but the beauty of Iron Maiden is that they never take themselves too seriously!
152. Prodigal Son - Killers
This might get me the most flack of any song on this post. "Prodigal Son" is notably the only song off of 1981's Killers that was not played on the album's tour. Most believe that this song has never been played live, although through a few reliable sources I have found that it was indeed played live sometime in the 1970s. Whatever the case, I am glad it was not played live during the album tour as it is the weakest song on Killers. The song features a pretty neat intro, but that's about it. The lyrics deal with some sort of biblical figure trying to plead with a "lamia." Now, what is a "lamia?" According to Greek mythology, a lamia was a female demon who devoured the heads of children. Interesting to say the least. "The Lamia" is also a song by Genesis, of whom Steve Harris drew a lot of inspiration from, so there might be some ties there.
151. The Unbeliever - The X Factor
The worst song from the Blaze Bayley era comes just above the worst one from the Paul Di'anno era. The final track on The X Factor, Iron Maiden's first album with Blaze Bayley on vocals, is fairly useless. Like most of the songs from these bottom five, the song features a cool intro, but the rest of the song suffers from repetitiveness, some lackluster lyrics, and forced guitar solos in the midsection of the song. At the end, I myself am an unbeliever. As in, I can not believe they would choose this song on the album when "I Live My Way," "Judgement Day," and "Justice of the Peace" are all far superior to this song, and yet were regulated to 'B' sides of The X Factor's first single, "Man on the Edge." The lyrics seem to hint at someone who runs from emotional problems and will not believe who they truly are inside.
Well, that was not easy, but those are the five worst Iron Maiden songs. No two lists are exactly the same, so give us your worst five in the comments below. Keep posted for the next list where we reveal songs 150-141 on Heavy Metal Mania!
Visit http://uptheirons-666.blogspot.com/ to see Heavy Metal Mania's main site where there are several completed Iron Maiden lists already up on the web!