Bruce's Solo Discography Ranked - The Complete List

Discussion in 'Best of / Worst of Polls forum' started by Diesel 11, May 6, 2018.

  1. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    [​IMG]

    Hey all. As I brought up in the Bruce Dickinson thread, there have been a few solo Bruce survivors before, but the results, while interesting, aren't as accurate as something like the commentary board elsewhere on this forum. Hence why I've decided to do something in the same vein as the non album Maiden songs list: I have set up polls for each of Bruce's solo songs which participants can rank from 1 - 10. The results will be compiled into an overall list, from "worst" to "best" of his solo material.

    There are 96 songs in here - the 65 originally on albums + the original ones released as bonus material. For the latter, I'm not including covers, only stuff originally by Bruce.

    I've created six different forms so as not to overwhelm any voters with all of them in one. The links will take you directly to them - fill 'em out and help put together the MaidenFans Bruce Dickinson List!

    Tattooed Millionaire

    Balls To Picasso

    Skunkworks

    Accident of Birth

    The Chemical Wedding

    Tyranny of Souls

    (+ "Best of Bruce Dickinson" material)

    And for added effect, I've also set up a form with all of Bruce's albums in it which you can also rate. Will be interested to see how it compares with how all of the albums' songs rated rank the albums.
    The Albums

    I personally will be going through and listening to everything again to best be able to vote in this. I will also try to be more objective than I've been when I rate Maiden's discography to help make the results more accurate.

    Thanks to all who take part in this; I look forward to seeing the results!

    If I've made any mistakes (including leaving off certain songs) please let me know so I can get them fixed right away. I'm not perfect!

    EDIT: List starts here!
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2018
    Number 6 and Jer like this.
  2. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    Like I said, I'm going through the entire discography again to best be able to vote. First album:

    TATTOOED MILLIONAIRE

    1. Son of a Gun
    - This song has grown on me quite a lot since I first heard it. Great opener, much enjoyment. Would probably be a 10 if Bruce didn't have better songs, lol. 9/10
    2. Tattooed Millionaire - The song that got me into his solo stuff and still one of my favorites - possibly my favorite, but that depends on my mood. Absolute perfection. 10/10
    3. Born In '58 - Sentimental Bruce is great Bruce. Reminiscences about his youth coupled with wonderment over where we're headed. I love it! 9/10
    4. Hell on Wheels - Very fun song. Great chorus. Not as good as the past three but very enjoyable. 8/10
    5. Gypsy Road - The most ballad-esque song on the album, it's good but nothing too special. 7/10
    6. Dive! Dive! Dive! - I know a lot of people hate this one, but I love it. Sex-driven but written from a submariner's perspective. Fun jam! 8/10
    7. All The Young Dudes - Great for a cover, but it's not a mind-blowing song. Enjoyable when it comes on. 7/10
    8. Lickin' The Gun - The chorus is pretty dumb and it's easily one of his most throwaway tracks. 5/10
    9. Zulu Lulu - I like this one a little better but it's also nothing to write home about. 5/10
    10. No Lies - Far from a perfect song, but it's a great closer, the ending is pretty awesome, and I adore the chorus. Does feel partly like a BYDTTS rip-off, but I'm okay with that. 8/10

    Bonus Tracks:
    • Darkness Be My Friend - Nice short piece but it's not all too special. 7/10
    • Winds of Change - Scorpions did it better, but I still enjoy this one. 8/10
    • Bring Your Daughter... To The Slaughter - Maiden's is far and away the better version, but I don't dislike this. Enjoyable stuff. 7/10
    • Ballad of Mutt - Eh... nah, it's pointless. 1/10
    I love this album. Very fun stuff even if he'd go on to greater things. Side-note: These ratings only apply to Bruce's discography - if we were doing this for music as a whole, there'd be many more 10s.

    Pointless throwaway jams done right; love this record.
     
  3. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    BALLS TO PICASSO

    1. Cyclops
    - I've heard people say this goes nowhere, but I disagree. Very nice opening. 9/10
    2. Hell No - Kind of a dumb idea but it's an enjoyable listen. 8/10
    3. Gods of War - Also a pretty nice song. 8/10
    4. 1000 Points of Light - On first listen I was disappointed by this one, but I've come to enjoy it. The chorus sells it. 7/10
    5. Laughing in the Hiding Bush - My second least favorite on the album, it's not bad but it's too silly of an idea. 6/10
    6. Change of Heart - Very nice acoustic-based track. 8/10
    7. Shoot All The Clowns - This is also a pretty silly song, but I love it nonetheless. 9/10
    8. Fire - The most meh song on the whole album. It's not bad, but the chorus is the kinda thing you expect to hear when you're listening to the radio and an ad for an artist from the '80s you can only remember two songs from comes on and they're telling you that you'll love their new tour and yadda yadda. This is the kind of song they'd play in the commercial. No thanks. 5/10
    9. Sacred Cowboys - Despite the "you can sell people crap" line being a very silly one, I love this song. The chorus and the spoken bits work together very well. Debated between 9 and 10 but decided to give it top notches. 10/10
    10. Tears of the Dragon - No shit, it's a 10/10.

    Bonus Tracks:
    • Fire Child - Not Bruce's best vocal performance but it's a very enjoyable song. 8/10
    • Elvis Has Left The Building - Unlike a lot of joke songs, this one works. Really well. Not essential but very fun listen. 6/10
    • The Breeding House - I liked this song but wasn't completely sold on it. Then I found out what it's based on. Good fucking lord. 10/10
    • No Way Out... To Be Continued - Loved it when I first heard it but it's fallen a couple points. Still very good. 8/10
    • Over and Out - Very different kind of Bruce song. Pretty decent. 5/10
    • The Post Alternative Seattle Fall Out - This actually reminds me of Buckethead. That doesn't save it from being a completely boring track. 1/10
    • Tibet - Much better, decent number. 5/10
    • Cadillac Gas Mask - Over and Out, Tibet, and Cadillac Gas Mask are all in the same boat for me - very different songs from his usual stuff, not bad, but nothing compelling. Decent. 5/10
    • No Way Out... Continued - Ending on a high note. I still want that concept album. 8/10
    Overall, an album that's grown a lot on me. Some great stuff, and the bonus tracks are pretty cool as well.
     
  4. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    SKUNKWORKS

    There isn't much to talk about the songs, but I've rated them as such:

    1. Space Race - 10/10
    2. Back From The Edge - 10/10
    3. Inertia - 9/10
    4. Faith - 10/10
    5. Solar Confinement - 8/10
    6. Dreamstate - 8/10
    7. I Will Not Accept The Truth - 7/10
    8. Inside the Machine - 8/10
    9. Headswitch - 8/10
    10. Meltdown - 9/10
    11. Octavia - 8/10
    12. Innerspace - 8/10
    13. Strange Death in Paradise - 8/10

    Bonus Tracks:
    • I'm in a Band with an Italian Drummer - 1/10 (really don't care for this one)
    • Rescue Day - 5/10
    • God's Not Coming Back - 6/10
    • Armchair Hero - 7/10
    • R 101 - 6/10
    • Re-Entry - 7/10
    • Americans Are Behind - 6/10 (one of Bruce's most fun joke tracks, if not outstanding it's very enjoyable)
    Very strong album.
     
  5. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    ACCIDENT OF BIRTH

    1. Freak
    - Great opening track. Never thought that "Who leads you to the dark secret?" was an incredible lyric but it's a very fun song and it works. 9/10
    2. Toltec 7 Arrival - I mean, it's not really a song. Still better than a lot of others though. 3/10
    3. Starchildren - Launching into track three, heavy and mean and very great. 9/10
    4. Taking the Queen - It's good, but there are better ones to be found on this album. 7/10
    5. Darkside of Aquarius - This is considered to be one of Bruce's best, if not the all-time champion. When I first heard it I was confused because I couldn't see that at all. The ending wheel of dharma thing seemed stupid and the whole track felt under-cooked. Gradually, however, I've come to love it and it's now a favorite of mine. I wouldn't call it perfect because he would take the same kind of thing and repeat it with "Book of Thel" and nail it there, but this is a great track nonetheless. I love it. 10/10
    6. Road to Hell - The most "Maiden" song in his discography. Standard rocker, very fun. 8/10
    7. Man of Sorrows - Far better than the Maiden song and one of the best ballads ever. 10/10
    8. Accident of Birth - Also kind of a standard rocker but a very cool song. 9/10
    9. The Magician - Wavered between a 9 and a 10 but went for the latter. It's basically yet another standard rocker but my god is it a fun song. I adore it. 10/10
    10. Welcome to the Pit - I've heard a lot of criticisms for this one and while it's a little weaker I don't think all of them are justified. A little under-done but still cool stuff. 8/10
    11. Omega - The verses are beautiful, some of Bruce's best lyricism and I cry whenever they play. The rest is... okay but nothing too special. On the basis of the verses: 9/10
    12. Arc of Space - Omega might have gone down the wrong route but this one did not. Absolute beauty. 10/10

    Bonus:
    • Ghost of Cain - Really cool song. 9/10
    A grower of an album but it's full of a lot of great songs. The next one would be better, of course...
     
  6. Number 6

    Number 6 Ancient Mariner

    I've never really given Bruce's solo discography the attention I know it deserves (I think I only went through all of his records once or twice), and it's been a long time since I listened to it, but I'll try to give it another listen this week so I can contribute to the voting. Let's see how it turns out. :p
     
    Diesel 11 likes this.
  7. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    I forgot to mention and hasten to add - these polls will be open for quite some time, a month at least, to make sure everyone gets a chance to vote in them. I'll be pushing it mostly in the week before they close; otherwise take your time, give them all a few spins, enjoy them, and vote at your leisure. :)
     
    Number 6 likes this.
  8. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    CHEMICAL WEDDING

    Bruce has some very strong albums, but this is his strongest. Don't believe me? Watch this:

    1. King in Crimson - 10/10
    2. Chemical Wedding - 10/10
    3. The Tower - 10/10
    4. Killing Floor - 10/10
    5. Book of Thel - 10/10
    6. Gates of Urizen - 10/10
    7. Jerusalem - 10/10
    8. Trumpets of Jericho - 10/10
    9. Machine Men - 10/10
    10. The Alchemist - 10/10

    This is not hyperbole.

    Bonus Tracks:
    • Return of the King - 9/10
    • Real World - 9/10
    • Confeos - 8/10
    The bonus tracks have a tough job: following ten of the strongest songs on the strongest album ever. And actually... they're some of Bruce's best. Well played, but I prefer to listen to The Chemical Wedding without them.

    My favorite albums change from time to time, but currently it's this one.* Absolutely stellar, every single song, every moment, every bit of this album is perfection and long may it remain this way. I love this fucking album.

    *Actually it's tied with Ahab's The Call of the Wretched Sea, but that's a minor detail and who's keeping track, anyway?
     
    Shavasku and Navigators Ghost like this.
  9. Number 6

    Number 6 Ancient Mariner

    I can agree with this. Granted I haven’t listened to the albums that much, let’s see if they change places on my list when I listen again. They might, but I doubt The Chemical Wedding is going to leave the top spot. I used to rank the albums like this:
    1. The Chemical Wedding
    2. Tyranny of Souls
    3. Accident of Birth
    4. Skunkworks
    5. Balls To Picasso
    6. Tattooed Millionaire
    Pretty much a reverse chronological order with the first 2 swapped. Actually, I doubt this list has changed at all. I have many vivid memories about Bruce’s albums despite few listens, and I recall the first 3 on my list were at least very, very good.
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2018
  10. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    Your list is actually exactly like mine, with one pair swapped. Will explain tonight when I finish Tyranny of Souls.
     
    Number 6 likes this.
  11. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    TYRANNY OF SOULS

    1. Mars Within
    - Like Toltec 7 Arrival, it's not really a song, but it's very good nonetheless. 5/10
    2. Abduction - Kicks right into the album with some really heavy hitting in the drum section. Great chorus. 9/10
    3. Soul Intruders - Fast opening, not the most special song but it's cool nonetheless. 8/10
    4. Kill Devil Hill - The album's behemoth, monstrous Kill Devil Hill rises to the forefront. Recounting the events at Kitty Hawk that would change the course of history in the most epic way possible, it's heavy as all fuck before changing mood abruptly and exiting on a hopeful, inspiring, beautiful note. The best song on here and one of Bruce's best, period. 10/10
    5. Navigate the Seas of the Sun - An interestingly different kind of song, this is more quiet and peaceful but still soars high into the clouds. Floating on an endless sea... 10/10
    6. River of No Return - Cool song but not really much of note. 8/10
    7. Power of the Sun - The first one on here I really got into, it's short but oh-so-sweet. Awesome stuff. 10/10
    8. Devil on a Hog - Kind of a more hard rock oriented song with Black Sabbath influences, this is a pretty cool beast with a great chorus. 9/10
    9. Believil - Speaking of beasts, there's also this brooding, rising, oosing, monster of a track. This absolutely screams "evil" and boy oh boy do I like that. 9/10
    10. A Tyranny of Souls - The title track finally comes along and it ends the album on a high note. The chorus is fucking godly. 10/10

    Bonus:
    • Eternal - Beautiful stuff. 10/10
    Awesome album.

    ----------------

    THE BEST OF BRUCE DICKINSON
    • Broken - Awesome song, a survivor story of one of the greatest frontmen ever. 9/10
    • Silver Wings - Many have come close, but I'd say this is the closest to Aces High, Pt. 2. 10/10
    • Wicker Man - One of the songs that helped me get into Bruce's solo stuff. I actually prefer it over the Maiden song (though I love that one as well). This has a lot of atmosphere and is a perfect representation of one of the best films ever. 10/10
    • Acoustic Song - Not as good as Arc of Space but still very nice. 9/10
    • Midnight Jam - Decent. 5/10
    • Dracula - Technically this isn't solo Bruce, but it was released as that so eh. Bruce has an amazing solo discography, but goddamn, he started his career on a fucking high note. I don't want to love this as much as a I do, but... I really do. The lyrics are silly and cheesy but they're perfect nonetheless. The performances of everyone - goddamn this is a good song. I love it. 10/10
    ----------------

    So lemme say a few words about Bruce's albums as a whole: after Ahab (their four albums are all 10/10s), Bruce Dickinson has the most consistent discography of any artist I have ever listened to. Each of his albums is a 9/10 or higher.
    1. The Chemical Wedding - 11/10 (fight me)
    2. Tyranny of Souls - 10/10
    3. Accident of Birth - 9.5/10
    4. Skunkworks - 9/10
    5. Tattooed Millionaire - 9/10
    6. Balls To Picasso - 9/10
    The Chemical Wedding is the obvious one for me. The whole thing is a fuckin' masterpiece. Tyranny of Souls edges over AOB in the consistency department and really the only difficulty is ranking the bottom three. I'm going with Skunkworks as the highest because it's a pretty strong album, Tattooed Millionaire following it because it's a very fun record (and has some great production) and Balls To Picasso takes a close third, just missing out because it's a weird mix of silly and serious that doesn't work as well. All six of them are gold, however.

    So while I could vote like I have them ranked in my "archives", I won't, because I want my vote to count for something. Instead, I'm voting like this:
    1. The Chemical Wedding - 10/10
    2. Tyranny of Souls - 9/10
    3. Accident of Birth - 8/10
    4. Skunkworks - 7/10
    5. Tattooed Millionaire - 6/10
    6. Balls To Picasso - 5/10
    And again - I've tried to be objective in ranking the songs so if something seems low it's probably just because I'm solely looking at Bruce's discography, not at music as a whole. If I was doing the latter, there'd be a fuck-load of more 10s.

    -----------------

    So that about sums it up for me. I went through all the albums in one day and it's time I went to bed. The floor is open for anyone else wishing to speak about this fucking legend's soloworks. Be my guest; am hyped to see what the voting will reveal. Thanks to all who've voted by the way, some interesting stuff so far.

    Cheers! :)
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2018
    Number 6 likes this.
  12. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    One final thing before I end tonight's posting spree: there is a song that is currently in the lead because, unlike all the others, it has received nothing but 10s.

    Nothing.

    But.

    10s.

    I'm very interested to see if it will keep this up throughout. Whew!
     
    Black Bart likes this.
  13. Black Bart

    Black Bart Ancient Mariner

    Great, let's play a game of "Guess the Bruce Dickinson song" then! :D Is that "Book of Thel"?
     
    Diesel 11 and Number 6 like this.
  14. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    I have to check if said song still has that record today.

    I’d answer the question but I wouldn’t wanna unveil any surprises so soon. :ok:

    I’ll say this: it is one of the obvious suspects.
     
  15. Collin

    Collin King of Listmakers

    It’s for sure Aquarius.

    I have voted. If Aquarius does not receive anything other then a 10, I might cry.
     
  16. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    Actually, the song in question has by now received an 8 and a 9. All are on an equal playing field now.
     
  17. Number 6

    Number 6 Ancient Mariner

    @Collin you can cry.
     
    Collin and Diesel 11 like this.
  18. Number 6

    Number 6 Ancient Mariner

    Damn, I think I'm gonna have to listen to the albums in a different order. Tattooed Millionaire turned out to be just as boring as I remembered (and I'm only halfway through it). I think if I start from Tyranny of Souls and work my way down to the first albums I'll be able to rate the songs more accurately.
     
  19. Diesel 11

    Diesel 11 As you scream into the web of silence...

    Whatever suits you! Like I said earlier, I enjoyed Tattooed Millionaire on my first listen and I still love it now. Awesome album, just not a very important one for Bruce.
     
    Number 6 likes this.
  20. SixesAlltheway

    SixesAlltheway (slow heavy metal music playing)

    Maybe the most important album for Bruce, personally. But not for fans looking to listen to his solo stuff :D
     

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