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2 Minutes to Midnight

Discussion in 'Powerslave' started by Anonymous, Apr 11, 2004.

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How good is 2 Minutes to Midnight on a scale of 1-10?

  1. 10

    36.4%
  2. 9

    38.6%
  3. 8

    15.9%
  4. 7

    6.8%
  5. 6

    2.3%
  6. 5

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  7. 4

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  8. 3

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  9. 2

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  10. 1

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    Here, you can read other visitors' comments on '2 Minutes To Midnight' as well as post your own. Any contribution to the commentary will be much appreciated, may it be cultural references relevant to the song (links to related websites, interpretations that may have been overlooked in the Commentary, and the like) or personal essays related to the topic of the song. Just be aware that messages that are either off-topic or too wacky may be deleted.
     
  2. SinisterMinisterX

    SinisterMinisterX Illuminatus Staff Member

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    5 out of 5. Almost perfect in every respect. I never get tired of hearing this song, especially live versions.

    There are two interesting compositional techniques which are used in this song. They also appear in other Maiden songs, but they are especially prominent here.

    1. Rhythmic modulation (also known as metrical modulation). In general, this term refers to a tempo change in which the new tempo is based on some rhythmic element of the old tempo. In this song, the fast and slow sections are related by a ration of 2 to 1. That is, two beats in the fast sections become one beat in the slow section. This is a common type of rhythmic modulation, and in these cases the slower sections are sometimes called 'half-time' - or, conversely, the fast sections can be called 'double-time'.

    2. Pedal points. In general, this term refers to the bass remaining on a single note while the melody instruments (guitars in this case) change chords. Two clear examples in this song are:

    a ) "The killer's breed or the demon's seed..."
    The bass remains on an A note while the guitars change chords.

    b ) The closing of the guitar solo section
    The bass remains on E as the guitars play a C-D-E progression.

    As I mentioned above, these techniques appear in other Maiden songs. Finding other examples is left as an exercise to the reader. Here's one hint: "Sign Of The Cross" contains some clever and unusual rhythmic modulations.
     
  3. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    I think that the intro is the same as "Curse of the Pharaos" by Mercyful Fate ,a think Melissa album....in 1983.....
     
  4. Uwe

    Uwe Trooper

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    This one has been played far too often. I just cannot listen to it anymore. Well, maybe they play it so often because it's a really good composition. It's quite lengthy for a single, but it manages to keep you interested. Four stars, it could have been more if it was a bit more compact.
     
  5. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    [!--QuoteBegin--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE[/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--QuoteEBegin--]The sleeve picture is another one of Derek Riggs's masterpieces, showing a soldier Eddie sitting in front of a nuclear explosion, which judging by the flags is at the United Nations headquarters.[/quote]

    (From The Commentary)

    There is much more to the sleeve picture than that.
    Judging by the flags, the nuclear explosion can not be at the United Nations headquarters. The flags are, from left to right: Soviet Union, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, UK, Argentina, USA, Israel and Cuba. There is no alphabet in the world that would place these flags in that order.
    The concerning countries do have something in common, however. At the time the single was released, all these countries were all engaged in an armed conflict of some sort.
    In 1979, the USSR had invaded Afghanistan.
    Iran and Iraq were at war.
    The UK and Argentina had just fought the Falklands War.
    The USA was guilty of being a major warmonger in the world at that time, supporting military coups and delivering weapons all over the world (the same applies to the USSR).
    I don't know if Israel was engaged in a true war in 1984, but the words 'Israel' and 'war' were a common combination even back then.
    Cuba- I don't know when, but Cuba was engaged in Angola and other African countries at some point.

    Eddie is obviously in the 'Uncle Sam' pose, saying "I want YOU".


    On an interesting side note, in 1984, the Doomsday Clock was moved to three minutes to midnight, the closest it had ever been since 1953, when it was at two minutes. The official reason given was:

    The arms race accelerates. “Arms control negotiations have been reduced to a species of propaganda. . . . The blunt simplicities of force threaten to displace any other form of discourse between the superpowers.”

    I am quite certain that these news were what inspired the song.
     
  6. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    The commentary of the single has been modified according to Perun's information.

    Thanks mate!    :mellow:
     
  7. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    [!--QuoteBegin-Black Ace+Aug 20 2004, 11:21 AM--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(Black Ace @ Aug 20 2004, 11:21 AM)[/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--QuoteEBegin--]this song has the greatest line maiden ever created: "blood is freedoms' stain"
    [snapback]83867[/snapback]​
    [/quote]

    The line "blood is freedoms' stain" isn't to be taken literally. If you look at the context, it sounds as if the warmonger-ing politicians are sending people "to war again" and they're trying to say that "blood is freedom's stain" so they can justify sending people to their deaths. It doesn't seem to me that Maiden really thinks that "blood is freedom's stain" and because it's used sort of ironically, I don't see how it's the greatest line ever created.
    Just a thought...
    PS: Yeah, I realize that this thread is almost a year old [!--emo&:blink:--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/blink.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'blink.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
     
  8. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    [!--QuoteBegin-Passing By+Mar 5 2005, 04:49 AM--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(Passing By @ Mar 5 2005, 04:49 AM)[/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--QuoteEBegin--]The line "blood is freedoms' stain" isn't to be taken literally. If you look at the context, it sounds as if the warmonger-ing politicians are sending people "to war again" and they're trying to say that "blood is freedom's stain" so they can justify sending people to their deaths. It doesn't seem to me that Maiden really thinks that "blood is freedom's stain" and because it's used sort of ironically, I don't see how it's the greatest line ever created.
    Just a thought...
    [snapback]99215[/snapback]​
    [/quote]

    Considering the lyrics of the song, it is impossible to believe the line is to be taken literally (and I am very sure Ace got that as well). I too think the line is brilliant, as it comprehends the entire madness of war-mongering politics in one phrase.
     
  9. national acrobat

    national acrobat Ancient Mariner

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    Good song, but never really been one of favourites - probably heard it far too often. It is good however and has interesting lyrics, but doesn't quite match up to Powerslave and ROTAM on the album. Maybe 4.5 stars.
     
  10. Raven

    Raven Ancient Mariner

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    This was one of the songs that got me into Maiden, thanks to the song being in Vice City. I particularly like the prechorus, and the little interlude after the solo, where the whole tempo of the song slows down, only to be brought back in by nicko and dave and adrian kicking back in with the main riff-that is an example of a song where i love the reintroduction of the main riff. Nice sing along chorus too. 4.5 stars
     
  11. Raven

    Raven Ancient Mariner

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    [!--QuoteBegin-Ascendancy+Jan 13 2006, 10:15 PM--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(Ascendancy @ Jan 13 2006, 10:15 PM)[/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--QuoteEBegin--]While reading the IMC part for this single, I thought that the "I want you" pose could be connected to the song 'Iron Maiden'. The connection could be the "Iron Maiden wants you for dead" part and also at the end of 'Iron Maiden', when played live, Bruce (I don't know if Paul did this) always says "I want you, and you, and you, and you, and you, and you, etc etc etc etc Iron Maiden's gonna get all of you!".
    [snapback]126965[/snapback]​
    [/quote]

    Could be. But I think it's a lot more likely that Maiden would try to parody the image of Uncle Sam on U.S. Army recruitment posters, as it would be both politically ironic and more in keeping with the song's lyrics and meaning. Maiden don't really go into meaningless self-reference, as far as I can see. If someone asked a member of the band, we would know, but I think it's unlikely-it would seem quite a strange connection, wouldn't it? 2 Minutes doesn't have that much to do with IM, except for the fact that IM is the band's title track.
     
  12. Raven

    Raven Ancient Mariner

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    [!--quoteo(post=128839:date=Feb 11 2006, 10:53 PM:name=Ascendancy)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(Ascendancy @ Feb 11 2006, 10:53 PM) [snapback]128839[/snapback][/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]
    I was listening to this song earlier and I randomly typed the chorus into an MSN conversation. Only then did I realise that I can't understand the line "To kill the unborn in the womb". I think it's a metaphor, but I can't understand exactly what it means. It reminds me of one of Brutus' soliloquys (I hope I spelt that right) in Julius Caesar where he says something like "Think of Caesar as a Serpent, and that Serpent must be killed in it's shell...." I can't remember the rest, but it was similar sounding to the line from '2 Minutes..', so is there any connection there? Are the meanings similar?
    [/quote]

    I think the reasoning behind that line is that nuclear war destroys everyone, and will cut through all protection. The image of a womb is a very comforting one normally, as it implies protection of the vunerable and weak, safe from the outside world. Nuclear war shatters that protection, and so no-one is safe.
     
  13. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    "The Doomsday Clock has signified the level of threat posed by nuclear weapons and other changing factors in international security. "

    http://www.thebulletin.org/doomsday_clock/

    [​IMG]

    The famous (for all maiden fans) clock stands at seven minutes to midnight since 2002. After the news in Iran and rencently in N Korea, do you think the clock will soon move again ? Is "Two Minutes to midnight" possible again ?
     
  14. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

  15. Dr. Eddies Wingman

    Dr. Eddies Wingman Brighter than thousand_suns

  16. LooseCannon

    LooseCannon Yorktown-class aircraft carrier Staff Member

    Re: '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    I think they are just making shit up?[hr][/hr]Ah. No, it looks like one guy is an idiot. I doubt Bruce is against abortion in the "no abortion ever" mannerisms.
     
  17. Dr. Eddies Wingman

    Dr. Eddies Wingman Brighter than thousand_suns

    Re: '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    I don't know who is the biggest idiot on there. The one with the first comment (I think the oldest comments are at the bottom), or the guy going in detail to read the abortion issue into every single line of the lyrics.

    If you read from bottom up, you see that the guy signing "Ola, Norge, Norway" - labels the general fan as shallow and then goes on to state "the fans want blood, death, drugs, sex and violence". I think this fellow is a true right-wing Christian from the Norwegian Bible Belt - one of those who is convinced Judgement Day is right around the corner since the establishment of Israel in 1948.
     
  18. LooseCannon

    LooseCannon Yorktown-class aircraft carrier Staff Member

    Re: '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    You have them too? Wow, I didn't even know you guys were big enough to have belts. I thought Norway was so skinny they'd need suspenders. ;)

    But I get you. And I mean...they're wrong. You can read a lot into lyrics. You can read too much and overstep sometimes. But in this instance? Fuck. No.
     
  19. Unknown One

    Unknown One I see the ghost of navigators.

    Re: '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    :uhm: You only have to look at the single cover to see that it's about nuclear war, the doomsday clock etc.
    If the whole abortion argument is all based upon one line, then he's just making stuff up. You can take anything out of context if you try hard enough.
     
  20. Dr. Eddies Wingman

    Dr. Eddies Wingman Brighter than thousand_suns

    Re: '2 Minutes To Midnight'

    Oh, don't you doubt some people are narrow-minded enough to actually be serious about this.

    The belt isn't very wide. It stretches from the south tip (around Kristiansand) along the west coast up to Ålesund. The Christians in this belt are generally conservative, more so than in East and North Norway.
     

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