Chuck Schuldiner Project

Friday, February 25, 2011

Live At Donington-Iron Maiden

 To celebrate the end of power metal week I decided to do an album by one of the creators of power metal, Iron Maiden, while they themselves may not be true power metal they definitely influenced and helped its creation. The reason I chose this album was that my Finnish metalhead friend Ville was all like 'Dude its like the best Maiden album ever!' so, taadaa! For todays review thank Finland. This album rocks Donington hard, and you really get a good live Maiden feel. The guitars are powerful and well done, the bass is amazing, the drums are solid McBrain and Dickinson was still in his prime. Most importantly the production quality doesn't suck, a key factor for any live album. So from the opening notes of Be Quick or Be Dead to the closing song Running Free prepare to rock out with Two Guys favorite metal band.
The guitar work on this record is fantastic. The guitar team of Dave Murray and Janick Gers really works and proves that Gers is a great guitarist. The solos are truly fantastic, Murray doesn't miss a note. One of my favorite parts about Murray's solos is that he rarely uses tapping but when he does he uses it to create an excellent effect. The rhythm guitar of Gers is as always spot on keeping the music flowing at a beautiful speed. He manages to keep the music going solidly and in a positive direction. He also nails his riffs accurately and gets his job done. In my opinion Gers is up there with Malcom Young in the world of rhythm guitarists. In other words, brilliant and underrated. The bass of Harris is solid, I really love his riff in Wrathchild. As the creator of Maiden he is allowed to get quite a few nice fills. The drums of McBrain are completely awesome, they keep the beat accurately and well. McBrain manages to get his fills down perfectly and flows wonderfully with the music. He proves that he is one of the greatest drummers ever on this record.
Dickinson does beautifully on this album, yes he was about to leave Maiden but at this point he was still with them and they were doing great. His roaring lyrics make the music feel powerful and wild. Yet he manages to control his inner demons and explodes much like a volcano, it is burning and devastating but controlled at the same time. His voice has plenty of guts behind it and he stays solid and powerful, he is perfectly in time with the instruments and his vocals are never off. I love his voice and you should too, he has all of the power that creates an awesome vocalist and he harnesses it, riding it like a bull. The lyrics, are all classic Maiden, they are dark and powerful, you know the drill. The songs are primarily Maiden classics so most metalheads can immediately guess what themes there will be. The production quality is excellent. As opposed to the Live after Death album Maiden actually has a good sound board guy this time and they sound great because of it.
Overall this is a great album with a lot going for it. There is an awesome set list with the songs that defined Maiden up until that point. The guitars are loud and proud and powerful in essence they are very enjoyable and a great listen. With this two guitar line up Maiden still manages to get a very deep and powerful sound. The bass is very well done and has some great riffs. The drums are solid and fantastic as McBrain always is. The vocals of Dickinson are powerful and a great listen. The production is also excellent so the music comes across very well. My favorite track on this album is the live rendition of From Here to Eternity. This album is one you should definitely buy because it has great replay value.

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