Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Top 10 non-Iron Maiden Adrian Smith songs

by Nathaniel Puente

Today is not just any ordinary February day. Today is Adrian Smith's 61st birthday! Adrian Smith, the guitarist most notable for his long tenure in Iron Maiden, has appeared on eleven of the band's sixteen albums and has written some great songs during his time. Smith has penned classics such as "Wasted Years," "22 Acacia Avenue," and "The Wicker Man." He has been a driving force in the band for many years and is a fan favorite. Although he is admired for his work in Maiden, he also has several other side and solo projects he has worked on throughout the years. He has been apart of Urchin, ASAP, The Entire Population of Hackney, Psycho Motel, and several others.

Today, on Heavy Metal Mania, we debate the Top 10 songs Adrian Smith has appeared on that are not Iron Maiden songs!

10. My Lady - Urchin - High Roller

Urchin was Adrian Smith's first band that he formed in 1972 with his good friend Dave Murray. The band slowly grew and eventually released a few singles in the late 70s. You will see them a lot on this list as I am really fond of their work. In 2004, 2010, and 2011, over 20 years after the band broke up, High Roller Records released three albums containing mostly unheard Urchin music. One of the songs on the 2010 release was this prog-rock sounding ballad, My Lady. It is a bit reminiscent of Iron Maiden's "Strange World," and is a nice tune.

9. The Magician - Bruce Dickinson - Accident of Birth

The writing combo that produced "Flight of Icarus," "2 Minutes to Midnight," "Moonchild," and more came together in 1997 for Bruce's solo album, Accident of Birth. The 1997 album contains many great songs, and this is one that is really awesome and could even be confused for a deep cut on Iron Maiden's Dance of Death or The Final Frontier. Okay, I'll try to stop making comparisons to Maiden songs now!

8. Animals - Urchin - High Roller

Urchin is back with a nice little rocker that contains a simple neat drum intro that seriously sounds like someone angrily knocking on a door. Adrian Smith's voice is superb on this track. Urchin songs like this one show how great Smith could have been even on his own because he has a very unique voice and his guitar playing is, of course, second to none.

7. Psycho Motel - Psycho Motel - State of Mind

In 1995 Smith formed Psycho Motel after his shortlived band ASAP folded. Smith had taken a five-year break from the music industry before being pulled back into it and eventually formed this band. The first album, State of Mind, came out in 1995 and possessed the grunge rock sound found all throughout the rock radio stations of the time and a bit of the progressive rock that Smith had experimented with in the past. The best song from this album has to be "Psycho Motel."

6. The Tower - Bruce Dickinson - The Chemical Wedding

Adrian Smith once again worked with Bruce Dickinson on his 1998 album, The Chemical Wedding. This album proved to be a big success and is one of the most admired of Dickinson's solo works. One listen to "The Tower" proves why. Dickinson delivering his signature Maiden voice, Eddie Casillas giving a nice groovy bassline, and Adrian Smith and Roy Z laying down some nice guitar riffs. All of that is a great formula for an awesome track.

5. Life in the City - Urchin - High Roller

Unfortunately, I have to make one more Iron Maiden reference. "Life in the City" eventually became Iron Maiden's 'B' side "Sheriff of Huddersfield." For that alone, it makes the list in some capacity. I've got nothing else.

4. The Lion - ASAP - Silver and Gold

If you have ever listened to a stereotypical 80s hair band that got their peak in music by being the lead song on a cheesy 80s movie, you have listened to ASAP's 1989 album, Silver and Gold. Many people believe that Smith quite Iron Maiden to record this album, but that was not the case as when this album was released Smith was still a member of Maiden. Some music trivia for you is that Ringo Starr's son, Zak Starkey, played on this album with Smith.

3. Accident of Birth - Bruce Dickinson - Accident of Birth

The aforementioned Bruce Dickinson album, Accident of Birth, contains some awesome music that is severely overlooked. "Accident of Birth," the title track of the album, is a spectacular introduction to Dickinson's solo career.

2. Reach Out - The Entire Population of Hackney

This one might be cheating a little bit, but "Reach Out" was not originally an Iron Maiden song anyway. This song was written by  Dave Colwell for The Entire Population of Hackney project. The project was the brainchild of Adrian Smith and Nicko McBrain, who formed the band with some of their former bandmates in various bands. Colwell was one of the band's guitarists and wrote this song that would eventually become my favorite Iron Maiden 'B' side.

1. She's a Roller - Urchin - Urchin

This is the best song Adrian Smith did with Urchin. If this band had received more backing financially and had been visible to a wider audience, this song would have been huge. Its simple, catchy chorus clashes with a neat guitar riff that Smith lays down perfectly. This is one of the most underrated songs ever quite honestly.

So, Happy Birthday to "H," one of the quiet members of Maiden who has such a fascinating and articulate style of playing. He has released some great music throughout his career and we are happy he is part of the Maiden machine.

What are your favorite Adrian Smith songs?

Let us know and stay alert for the next post on Heavy Metal Mania!


Friday, January 26, 2018

Ranking Every Iron Maiden Song: 130-121

by Nathaniel Puente

We continue the list ranking every Iron Maiden song with songs 130-121. Will your favorite make the list today? We hope not!
Remember to follow the links on the song titles to listen to the song!

130. Holy Smoke - No Prayer for the Dying

If we were ranking Iron Maiden's music videos, "Holy Smoke" would probably be on top of the list. In fact, that might be an idea for the future! Unfortunately for this 1990 single, this list is based solely on the music and "Holy Smoke" lacks in that category. No Prayer for the Dying as a whole was a letdown by Iron Maiden standards. Bruce's raspy voice is turned to max on this track, and that is not very welcome amongst most Maiden fans. The whole song feels more like one of those joke 'B' sides the band made back in the day than a solid single. The band was obviously not too fond of the single either, as it was dropped from the setlist before the end of No Prayer on the Road tour in 1991.

129. The Mercenary - Brave New World

Brave New World features some of Iron Maiden's best work in the 21st century. It was this album that put them back on the map as frontrunners in the metal world. The first four songs on the album are perhaps the album's best and flow perfectly together. The first song that kind of disrupts that flow is track 5, "The Mercenary." The song is naturally about a mercenary, or bounty hunter, and let's just be glad the song was not titled "The Bounty Hunter" because that sounds silly. The chorus to the song is cool and really has the Brave New World vibe going on. The whole song is great, it is just a little lacking compared to the rest of the album.

128. Wildest Dreams - Dance of Death

Iron Maiden has developed a nasty habit of making one of the worst songs on the album the lead single in the past two decades. This was truly the case when "Wildest Dreams" was made the lead single for Dance of Death. Why do they do this? Who knows, maybe it is because they want to show that the single is not the best song? Either way, this song is not the greatest song by any stretch. The song debuted on the "Give Me Ed... til I'm Dead" tour that preceded the Dance of Death album and received a positive reaction from the fans. That positivity soon waned as this song would not appear after the "Dance of Death World Tour" and soon faded away to obscurity.

127. Iron Maiden - Iron Maiden

If you see Iron Maiden in concert, there is no doubt you are going to hear this song live. The band has played this song during every concert they have performed and well, why not? The song is named Iron Maiden, after all, that is the name of the band for those not aware yet. It is a cool tradition, but it is not the best song to feature said tribute. The song is rather basic for the same band that produced monstrous classics such as "Hallowed be thy Name," "Ghost of the Navigator," or "Phantom of the Opera," which appeared on the same album as this song. The tame nature of the song is what puts it so low. If we were ranking Iron Maiden's live songs, this one would be much higher. Although, hearing this song lie is quite disheartening because you know it is the last song of the show, excluding the usual encore.

If you thought "The Angel and the Gambler" was repetitive, you do not know a thing. "Don't Look to the Eyes of a Stranger" easily features the most repetitive lyrics in Iron Maiden history, maybe music history. If you strip down the song a bit and forget the ridiculous part of the song that repeats the verse "Don't look to" at least 50 times, the track is well-written and goes inside the mind  of a deranged man, most likely you would have to be insane to write this song so it fits. For some reason, this song gets a  lot less flak than "The Angel and the Gambler," despite being almost three times as repetitive. Maybe it is because that song was a single and this one was an obscure track on an already underrated album.

125. The Edge of Darkness - The X Factor

A lot of the songs on 1995's The X Factor sound really great, but kind of run together and get lost in the shuffle. "The Edge of Darkness" is really one of those songs. If you ever worried that there would not be an Iron Maiden song with helicopter sounds, do not worry because they take over the first part of this track. The subject matter of this song is really neat. It follows the story of the movie Apocalypse Now, which is an adaptation of the novel Heart of Darkness, a book I was supposed to read in high school for class but never got around to because high school was a time for me to focus on things like sleeping and preparing for the procrastinating style I have adapted well into my college career. The topic of the book did interest me a lot though and it is awesome to see Iron Maiden take on these subjects so fluently. It is a great song that shows off Blaze's voice in fantastic form.

124. Drifter - Killers

Maybe I am a simple man, but "Drifter" has one of my favorite Iron Maiden intros. The quick guitar licks take you down another dimension and give a really good rock intro. The rest of the song, however, does not really hold up and gets lost along the way. The lyrics are kind of mindless and hold no significance to anything. This song sees its best days on the live stage, where it is extended to give the audience something to chant along to when Paul or Bruce give the "yo, yo, yo" signal. It works well to close out the album but it is just a bit lacking overall.

123. No Prayer for the DyingNo Prayer for the Dying

We can not blame or criticize Iron Maiden for changing things up a bit from album to album. It keeps their sound fresh and makes it possible for classic material to be released on every album. Some of these changes obviously do not work as well as others. No Prayer for the Dying has long been scrutinized as one of Maiden's weakest albums, and if you need a testament for that look no further than the title track. The song features a soft guitar intro and stays rather soft the whole way through. The lyrics are a cry from a lonely heart looking to God for answers to this perplexing situation. It is one of the few songs on the album that sounds very serious. My favorite rendition of this song is done for a seatbelt commercial.

122. 22 Acacia Avenue - The Number of the Beast

Anytime you throw down a song from The Number of the Beast, you are bound to take a lot of heat for it, but that is okay. "22 Acacia Avenue" finds itself squeezed fittingly at 122. This song is part 2 o the "Charlotte the Harlot" saga that started on the band's first album. It tells the life story and residence of Ms. Charlotte while detailing her daily life of debauchery. The mid-section of the song features some great guitar solos from Dave Murray and Adrian Smith, the latter shredder being the writer of the song along with Steve Harris. It is a neat song, but not one of the more memorable ones from this terrific album.

121. Out of the Shadows - A Matter of Life and Death

"Out of the Shadows" is one of the most melodic songs that Iron Maiden has ever produced. The song flows seamlessly through its entirety and hardly changes a step. This song is a lot like "No Prayer for the Dying," where it asks for a meaning of life without actually providing how it feels about that meaning. This is another one of those Maiden songs that are somewhat hidden gems. Personally, it is my least favorite song from A Matter of Life and Death, but I could easily see this song as someone's favorite from the album or even one of their favorite Maiden songs period.

So, there are 130-121. Next time we reveal another ten. Stay glued to your screens for the next post on Heavy Metal Mania!

155-151: https://uptheirons-666.blogspot.com/2017/12/ranking-every-iron-maiden-song-number.html?spref=fb

150-141: http://uptheirons-666.blogspot.com/2017/12/ranking-every-iron-maiden-song-150-141.html


Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Ranking Every Iron Maiden Song: 140-131

by Nathaniel Puente

Another week, another list of Iron Maiden songs today on Heavy Metal Mania. Today, we rank songs 140-131. Is your favorite on the list? Check the bottom of the post for links to the posts already up!

140. Out of the Silent Planet - Brave New World

When Iron Maiden announced Bruce Dickinson and Adrian Smith were to return to the band and work was going to be started on the band's 12th studio album, there was a reason for excitement. The band went into the studio and came out with 2000's Brave New World, a monumental album that showed Maiden was ready for the new millennium and prepared to retake over the metal world. The lead single was a no-brainer, "The Wicker Man," was the first track on the album and was a great song. The second single could have been any of the other nine songs from the album; maybe "Brave New World," the album's melodic title track, or how about "Blood Brothers," a song that has become a staple in Maiden's setlist? Well instead of either of those the band decided to choose "Out of the Silent Planet," one of the most underwhelming songs on the album. Why they chose this song is such a mystery. The intro is rather unpleasant, but the lyrics are interesting and the drum fill Nicko does before the verse is neat. Overall, it just seems like a waste of a song. The odd thing about this song being chosen as a single is that it was hardly ever played live, only four times in fact. Besides "Women in Uniform," which was only played once, it is the least played Maiden single. The band did not even play the song until the final four days of the tour in January 2001, three months after the song was released as a single. The music video that accompanied the song featured an out of sync live performance from the Brave New World Tour, but it was obviously not "Out of the Silent Planet" being played.

139. The Ides of March - Killers

Iron Maiden's shortest song. Let's make this the shortest review. The only worthwhile thing about this song is to play it on March 15th in a diluted tribute to Maiden. It is not a bad song, but definitely forgettable if "Wrathchild" does not immediately follow it.

138. Childhood's End - Fear of the Dark

Iron Maiden's 1992 album, Fear of the Dark, is really a hit or miss in a lot of the ways. Many of the songs feature decent lyrics with subpar music to back it. "Childhood's End" is definitely one of those songs. The track deals with children across the world starving and suffering. This used to be one of my favorite songs on the album, but that interest has waned over time. It is one of the most forgotten songs in Maiden's catalog. More than half of Fear of the Dark was not played live, including this song, which hurts their stock a bit. It has always been a pipe dream of mine to have Maiden play all of their discography at one point, but it does not seem feasible.

137. Judgement of Heaven - The X Factor

Here is another song that in my earliest days of obsessing over Iron Maiden was held very high by my standards. Over time though, it has fallen to the depressing depths that the protagonist of the song has as well. The lyrics, while serious in topic, have always seemed a bit silly. The line "You take the tarot cards, and throw them to the wind" never fails to make me chuckle just a bit. The music in this song is some of the best on the album. However, it does not fit the depressing mood the lyrics provide. This is odd considering half of the songs on this album give a dark, moody vibe to them. I might just be an apathetic chump, but anytime "God" is involved in Iron Maiden lyrics in a hopeful kind of way usually does not equal a great track. A few songs that do mention "God" in a Maiden way are "The Fallen Angel" or "Fates Warning." It's a shame because like a lot of the songs below this one, it could have been great.

136. Tears of a Clown - The Book of Souls

All of us have inner demons and unfortunately, they get the best of some people. This came true for the well-esteemed actor Robin Williams who committed suicide in 2014, shocking many people. That became the subject of this track from Iron Maiden's 2015 album, The Book of Souls. The lyrics are very meaningful and enjoyable, but the music lacks to back it up. It suffers as one of the weakest songs on the album because of this. If it was not for the first and last tracks on Disc 2 of The Book of Souls, Disc 1 would be far superior as the three most lacking songs are on Disc 2; two of these songs have already been revealed, which is the other? Just continue reading on.

135. Gates of Tomorrow - Dance of Death

There are a handful of Iron Maiden songs that fans collectively claim as throwaway songs. "Gates of Tomorrow" can be described as one of those songs. A lot of people seem to find Janick's solos and the opening guitar intro to be very distasteful. Bruce's voice on the track is reminiscent of his voice on No Prayer for the Dying, an album lost amongst many Maiden fans. These reasons, coupled with some questionable lyrics, create a lost song that some describe as the worst on the album. Despite all of that, it used to be one of my favorite Dance of Death songs when I first heard the album. That interest has dropped over time, but it is not a bad song by any stretch. The band describes the song as an "AC-DCish guitar-drum intro [that] quickly turns into a full-on Iron Maiden salvo" and that fits perfectly.

 134. Fear is the Key - Fear of the Dark

There was an abundance of "fear" on Fear of the Dark. Most songs mention the fear of something or reference it in some way. What exactly were they afraid of? Bruce leaving? Anyway, like most Iron Maiden songs, "Fear is the Key" features some life lessons that most of the public should take note of. In the 1980s, cases of HIV exploded throughout the world and while some raced to find a cure and show awareness, most ignored the pandemic until Freddy Mercury, of Queen fame, died due to the disease. This prompted the premise of "Fear is the Key," most notably the lyric "Nobody cares until somebody famous dies." This song suffers the same fate that a lot of songs on this particular list do: great lyrics, subpar music. This is one of those tracks from FOTD that feels too much like a filler.

133. Quest for Fire - Piece of Mind

We often applaud Iron Maiden for delivering historically accurate lyrics with some awesome music to back it up; none of that is present on "Quest for Fire." This track tells the thrilling tale of cavemen searching for fire to keep themselves sustained while fending off dinosaurs. The blame cannot be all thrown on the band for these lyrics as the song is based on the 1981 film of the same name. This is yet another song that was originally one of my favorites before falling off over time. This song might be the quintessential Iron Maiden filler. Despite its goofy lyrics and unmemorable guitar solos, it is a great song; then again, so are all Iron Maiden songs. Listen to this one on vinyl for maximum low-quality pleasure!

132. 2 A.M. - The X Factor

Iron Maiden's catalog features many depressing songs. If you choose a random selection of Maiden tracks you might pick up "No Prayer for the Dying" or "Wasting Love." Why you may even pick up "2 A.M." off of The X Factor. This song features a wonderful acoustic intro that masterfully used Blaze's voice when it breaks into verse. The song tells the story of a man stuck in a rut who is tired of life and might just end it all if he finds the time. The lyrics are desolate and might hit home for some. It is a nice song, but gets kind of lost in the shuffle among Iron Maiden songs. Although the band never performed it live, Blaze Bayley played it several times on solo tours.

131. Gangland - The Number of the Beast

Every legendary album has at least one song that you forget about. The Number of the Beast stands as one of the most iconic albums in metal history and "Gangland" somehow is on it. This song is kind of like the backup quarterback of a Super Bowl-winning team, or maybe a substitute midfielder for you non-American lot! The song starts off with a drum solo from the late Clive Burr, orchestrating his talents to his best abilities. This is the only song that features a songwriting credit from him.  The song describes a time when gangsters were rampant and went town to town doing their crimes and making their gains. It is not a poor song, but compared to the quality of the other album's tracks, it suffers dramatically.

So, there is the list of 131-140. Next time we throw down another ten songs. Leave a comment on your thoughts about this list and stick around for the next post on Heavy Metal Mania!


155-151: https://uptheirons-666.blogspot.com/2017/12/ranking-every-iron-maiden-song-number.html?spref=fb

150-141: http://uptheirons-666.blogspot.com/2017/12/ranking-every-iron-maiden-song-150-141.html

MAIN SITE: http://uptheirons-666.blogspot.com/

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Ranking Every Iron Maiden Song: 150-141

by Nathaniel Puente

Every Iron Maiden song is absolutely fantastic. What is the best one? What is the worst one? What is the 128th best one? We continue our ranking today on Heavy Metal Mania with songs 141-150!Check out the link at the end of today's list to see the other lists that have already been taken care of!

150. The Man of Sorrows - The Book of Souls

The lowest song from Iron Maiden's latest album, The Book of Souls, comes in solidly at number 150. It is the album's penultimate song as following it is the epic "Empire of the Clouds." The first half of the song reminds me a lot of a song from Bruce Dickinson's 1997 solo album Accident of Birth, that was also titled "Man of Sorrows!" Whether or not those songs share any connection is a mystery, but this man clearly is depressed, which most of us would be if we were the subject of one of Maiden's most boring songs. The instrumental piece in the middle is pretty nice, but that can hardly save this track which was doomed from the start. It should be noted that this song was written by Dave Murray and Steve Harris, so any thoughts of Bruce just bringing up an old song are moot. This is Murray's only contribution on the album. He usually only writes one to two songs per album, and it is a shame he could not whip out something like "Still Life" or "The Reincarnation of Benjamin Breeg." Oh well, there is always next album!

149. The Apparition - Fear of the Dark

1992's Fear of the Dark featured quite a few filler songs. "The Apparition" is probably one of those songs. It is challenging to have this song so low. The lyrics are some of my favorite in Maiden's catalog. They are very psychological and offer some good advice. Iron Maiden has some amazing lyrics through their 155 songs and these are different, and that is not necessarily a bad thing. That being said, the music in the song is not able to back up the lyrics and is lackluster. This album feels like a way for Maiden to find out what things worked and did not work, which can be felt as a different mood carries throughout the album. This is one of those songs that did not work. It will never be forgotten by me though as a line from the song is my signature on the IMFC forum.

148. New Frontier - Dance of Death

What do Nicko McBrain and Ringo Starr have in common? Besides being legendary English drummers who now reside in the U.S., they are comically known for rarely writing for their respective bands. While Ringo has "Octopus's Garden" and "Don't Pass Me By," Nicko has "New Frontier" and ... well, that's it. Nicko has only written one song during his 35-year stay in Iron Maiden. Was "New Frontier" a shot of lyrical genius that Nicko had been hiding from the world? Not really, the lyrics are tied in with Nicko's religious awakening and God's displeasure of cloning. Apparently, Nicko got tricked... or talked into being a Christian in 1999 by his wife and a church he attended. If he's happy, we're happy, but come on Nick, write a better song 20 years from now!

147. Look for the Truth - The X Factor

When Blaze Bayley was singing "Here is the dream" on this track, I am sure it was heartfelt. Bayley had hit the big time by singing for one of metal's biggest bands. The actual lyrics of the song have nothing to do with anything positive as the protagonist of the song is dealing with some awful demons from his own mind. This song follows a format that most on this album do: A soft almost inaudible intro, depressing lyrics that sequence into a fast instrumental verse and chorus, a couple guitar solos, some "woah-ohs" and the outro. It is pretty simplistic, but it works on most of the songs. This is just the weakest of the bunch. Many people completely dispell the Bayley era and would rather have me plug all 19 songs from that era at the bottom of the list, but I will never do that. The Bayley era contains some amazing music, and The X Factor is one of my favorite Iron Maiden albums, Top 5 for sure. That may be hard to believe since I have thrown now two songs from this album in the bottom ten, but I really do enjoy the album for its dark-slow paced vibe.

146. Weekend Warrior - Fear of the Dark

This is one of the songs that is the hardest to find people defend. It is far from the best song Iron Maiden has ever recorded, but I enjoy the theme of it and the music fits. It is another one of those experimental songs that they had on this album. This one obviously does not work for Maiden, but it would be a good AC/DC song. The song deals with football fans who go and see a match just to get crazy and cause havoc. One could compare it to the Hillsborough tragedy or an average Buffalo Bills home game. Dave Murray and Janick Gers lay down some excellent guitar solos on this one.

145. Run Silent Run Deep - No Prayer for the Dying

The first song from No Prayer for the Dying to make the list is "Run Silent Run Deep." The lyrics had been originally written by Bruce for the Somewhere in Time album but had to stow them away for a few years since he was denied any songwriting on the band's 1986 album. That may have ultimately been a good thing as this is a rather weak track. The intro is neat, but the verse is poor. The chorus and solo pick it up a bit, but the song as a whole just is not too thrilling.

144. Sanctuary - Iron Maiden

In comes the hatred from the nostalgic group. Well, this song is really basic and sounds a bit out of place on this record. That could be because it is not an original Iron Maiden composition. Despite the fact that most releases credit "Iron Maiden" as the writer of this song, it was not originally written by Iron Maiden. It is a little-known fact that Rob Angelo, who resided in the band in 1977, wrote the song and later sold it to the band for £300. That's quite a little nugget isn't it? Well, that, coupled with the single cover from 1980[pictured above] are the only interesting things about this song. How this song has lasted through nearly every tour is a mystery to me. 

143. Satellite 15... the Final Frontier - The Final Frontier

Que the worst title track in Maiden history. The insanely long intro to this song is what kills it for me. If it was written to be an intro for the tour, that's understandable, but why leave it that long on the album? The theme could be interesting to some people into the sci-fi stuff, but it does not hit home personally. The chorus is nice, but that about does it. The rest of the album, fortunately, features some amazing music that far surpasses the first track.

142. Sun and Steel - Piece of Mind

Once again I will reiterate that every Iron Maiden is a masterpiece, there are just some that are better than others. We all have an opinion on what is the best and worst, so do not get your panties in a twist if a song you like is low on this list. "Sun and Steel" comes in as one of two filler songs wedged near the end of 1983's Piece of Mind. The other song appears later on this list, I am sure you know what it is. The tale of this song is quite interesting. It follows the life of Japanese samurai Miyamoto Musashi. The one part of the song that does not sit well with me is the opening intro. Every time I hear that I usually skip the song. The placing of this song and "Sanctuary" will undoubtedly get me the most criticism, but we could not leave the 80s songs completely unscathed this time around, could we?

141. The Angel and the Gambler - Virtual XI

Fans everywhere rejoice! "The Angel and the Gambler" has finally been ranked! There was a time when I thought this song was severely underrated and deserved to be played live. Those times have passed and I have succumbed to most people's pleading and have grown to not be as fond of this song as I once was. The whole intro of the song is just not very cool. The horn sounding keyboards are just so un-Iron Maiden that it hurts a bit. The lyrics are also cheesy and uninspired, like most of the lyrics found throughout Virtual XI. This song, along with another Virtual XI track, are fun to troll people with whenever the aux cord is passed your way. For that alone, it gets a higher ranking from me than most people. The version of the music video is much shorter and probably should have been that way on the album.

So there are 150-141. Next time we will rank 140-131! What are some of your least favorite Iron Maiden songs? Leave a comment and stay on the look for the next post on Heavy Metal Mania!


155-151: https://uptheirons-666.blogspot.com/2017/12/ranking-every-iron-maiden-song-number.html?spref=fb

Friday, December 1, 2017

Ranking Every Iron Maiden song: Number 155-151

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!