Dance of Death: individual album judgement by yours truly

Funnily enough, I think that Gates Of Tomorrow has a horrible chorus but everything else is good.
1. Wildest Dreams 9,5
2. Rainmaker 9,5
3. No More Lies 8
4. Montségur 8,5
5. Dance of Death 10
6. Gates of Tomorrow 7
7. New Frontier 7
8. Paschendale 10
9. Face In the Sand 6
10. Age of Innocence 7
11. Journeyman 8,5


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It’s one of my favorites. Maybe not one of the ones they put the most effort in, but the final product is a great rock song with a fantastic chorus and I love it.
AOI sounds more like a Bruce solo song to me (not a good one).

Other songs which sounds more like a Bruce solo song to me are TMOS and maybe TMWWBK.
AOI sounds more like a Bruce solo song to me (not a good one).

Other songs which sounds more like a Bruce solo song to me are TMOS and maybe TMWWBK.
Not “Bring Your Daughter...” or “If Eternity Should Fail”...? :huh: (Or “Empire Of The Clouds”, for that matter...)
Not “Bring Your Daughter...” or “If Eternity Should Fail”...? :huh: (Or “Empire Of The Clouds”, for that matter...)

These songs sounds Maiden-ish for me. Well, without the piano parts in EOTC.

Curious, Dave co-wrote the 3 songs that I mentioned above and he is the only one from the three amigos who do not played on a Bruce solo album.
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Gates of Tomorrow is a good song, not the greatest though when you look at the rest of Maiden's discography.
  1. Wildest Dreams - 8/10
  2. Rainmaker - 8.25/10
  3. No More Lies - 8.5/10
  4. Montsegur - 9.5/10
  5. Dance Of Death - 8/10
  6. Gates Of Tomorrow - 7.5/10
  7. New Frontier - 6/10
  8. Paschendale - 8/10
  9. Face In The Sand - 9.5/10
  10. Age Of Innocence - 5/10
  11. Journeyman - 7.75/10
Average: 7,81/10
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The Maiden song that reminds me more of early Bruce's solo recordings is without shadow of doubt Weekend Warrior. I can't stand to listen to it included in a Maiden album but otherwise it is quite decent. Curiously enough it was not penned by Bruce.
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1. Wildest Dreams - 10/10
In an attempt to keep the hype from BNW rolling, Maiden open this record with a straightforward rocker that is short but a hell of a good time.

2. Rainmaker - 10/10
Another shorter song but with a lot of depth to it. Love the rain imagery here.

3. No More Lies - 9/10
Not quite as gripping but it’s still a strong song. The Last Supper vibes make this atmospheric tale a good one.

4. Montségur - 9/10
If Bruce didn’t sound like he was making up lyrics in the final chorus, it’d be a 10. It’s a mostly great song all the same.

5. Dance Of Death - 10/10
A really fun romp in the woods, the sort of thing you just wanna dance along to. I’ll prance with you, Bruce!

6. Gates Of Tomorrow - 10/10
Highly underrated rocker. Love the multi-tracked vocals in the chorus.

7. New Frontier - 8/10
The verses are rather paint-by-numbers, but the chorus is pretty cool and I dig the instrumental section.

8. Paschendale - 10/10
I literally cried during this song. Top 10 Maiden for sure.

9. Face In The Sand - 10/10
A reactionary tune to 9/11, this is a dark and brooding tale of mankind’s willingness to overlook the shit heaped on it. Sad but great song.

10. Age Of Innocence - 7/10
I like the chorus, but it feels out of place in this political rant. I dig the music but the lyrics just don’t go anywhere. Still a decent enough song.

11. Journeyman - 10/10
Lovely outro, this tribute to the glories of Iron Maiden. Fitting way to end a rather experimental release.

The production is absolute garbage, but luckily the music makes up for it.

Rating: 94%
My Ratings:

Wildest Dreams: 6,5
Rainmaker: 8,5
No More Lies: 10
Montsegur: 7
Dance Of Death: 9
Gates Of Tomorrow: 8,5
New Frontier: 7,5
Paschendale: 8
Face In The Sand: 10
Age Of Innocence: 7,5
Journeyman: 7

Overall: 8,1

Dance Of Death - Iron Maiden
Format: Vinyl

Side 1: Wildest Dreams/Rainmaker/No More Lies
Once counted in the band launches into the first single of the album, Bruce delivers a strong vocal in the verse but the chorus is frankly weak. The band delivers the punchy track with some nice guitar work in the back among the Rhythm. The solo is really well done and makes up for the weak chorus. Bruce lets out a nice cry in the bridge and the chorus comes in slightly better than before. All in all not a bad way to open the an album but clearly a flawed track. Continuing on the short and direct approach another single from the album follows up, Rainmaker, Chorus is delivered better than the previous track and the verses are still well delivered by Bruce. The song feels like a radio single but doesn't feel like Maiden is geared too far towards commercial. Solo isn't quite as impressive as the previous track but the interlude guitar work throughout is great. The first epic of the album closes off side 1 of the album. Bruce comes in over the calm band with low vocals the song slowly builds in the background clearly preparing to explode as the chorus comes in the band does this. Very repetitive but following the first chorus the band stays in delivering some aggressive riffing behind Bruce's mid ranged vocals. Wow is this song strong outside of the chorus a really strong track as a whole but the Chorus is far too repetitive albeit the second and third chorus are stronger than the first.

Wildest Dreams - 7.5/10
Rainmaker - 8/10
No More Lies - 9/10
Side 1 - 24.5/30

Side 2: Montségur/ The Dance Of Death/Gates Of Tomorrow
Side 2 opens with a heavy riff aggressive and dark the band wastes no time as Bruce comes in menacingly singing about the assault on the fortress of the same name. Bruce is constantly singing and wow is it amazing but I completely understand why it has never been played live. Wow is this song heavy and aggressive it would have made an amazing album opener. An amazing track throughout I regret not hearing it sooner. Acoustic guitar follows up the aggressive mini-epic as the title track comes in Bruce sings less menacingly than the previous track but the feeling of danger remains. An epic track with a feeling of theater this track is an experience not just some combination of notes it is more than that. The theatrics of Maiden are heard throughout the track and Bruce delivers as always. The solos are godly and the track ascends higher than those before it. Easily a track which had it been written decades before would be held in incredibly high regard by casual fans. Short guitar work opens up the side closer like every song on this side this one is written by Harris and Gers with Dickinson (on all but title track). Bruce sings very differently than he normally does and the approach isn't quite as strong, however he comes in quite soon after with normal vocals before the chorus which compared to what has come before on this side really lacks something. Overall the song is typical Maiden weaker track, a decent track which could be a great track for nearly any band but on a Maiden album it falls short among the brilliance of the band's creations on the album. A nice solo does

Montségur - 10/10
The Dance Of Death - 10/10
Gates Of Tomorrow - 7/10
Side 2 - 27/30

Side 3: New Frontier/Paschendale/Face In The Sand
Side 3 features Nicko's writing debut as the opening track, a heavy start segues into some nice guitar work as Bruce comes in, the chorus has a nice vocal tone to it. Fairly commercial sounding with a very political lyrical basis. The bridge into the solo sounds very much like 2 minutes to midnight and the solo itself is a beauty. Overall the song's lyrics while I don't feel exactly the same way as Nicko does it is well suited by the band behind it. Another good track with a catchy chorus. Adrian's epic is next, Paschendale is one of the songs which got me into Maiden, a monstrous war epic which features the classic guitar work Adrian's shorter tracks are known for with the brutality required to convey the horrors of war. The soaring chorus is simple but effective. Beautiful solos, the entire band is unreal throughout. Face In The Sand opens with what sounds like a continuation of the title track's riff, building evidently from the very first moments. When Nicko comes in the sound just gets so much heavier. Orchestral sounding in the backing. Bruce comes in and the song takes a dark turn appropriate for the heaviness of the track, very simplistic introduction to the solos which rip out of the darkness almost like a beacon of hope before being swallowed up by the heaviness of the track once more as the final chorus comes in.

New Frontier - 8/10
Paschendale - 10/10
Face In The Sand - 9/10
Side 3 - 27/30

Side 4: Age Of Innocence/Journeyman
The albums final two tracks open with a calm intro and Bruce sings over it as such but soon it changes into a heavier tune, Bruce's vocals drone a little bit on the chorus but I think it fits it really well. The verses don't feature much to note from the band but as a whole it works out decently with a nice solo. Closing off the album is Maiden's sole fully acoustic track, the orchestral feeling returns and Bruce sings calmly over it all, chorus is a little weaker but as a whole the calm track is a nice way to close off the monstrous album, the verses are well delivered.

Age Of Innocence - 7.5/10
Journeyman - 8/10
Side 4 - 15.5/20

Overall the album has a monstrous feel to it, the epics are amazing the shorter tracks are either hit or near miss. I feel like cutting 2-3 tracks would have made this album an absolute masterpiece. Slight reworking on a couple tracks would also have worked but wow are sides 2 and 3 amazing.

Overall 85%
Dance of Death is a weird album. I don't dislike any of the tracks, however there's not a lot of dynamics to the album. Apart from first two tracks the rest of the album falls into the mid tempo, long but not epic range. The running order is also odd, the equivalent tracks to Paschendale on most other Maiden albums are the last ones on their albums.

The guitar sound is crap, like a jar of wasps, and the loudness issue doesn't help.

Rainmaker is a perfect single that should be a huge hit. No More Lies is excellent, the best of all Steve's similar tracks, I.e not the epic but long, except maybe Heaven Can Wait or Afraid to Shoot Strangers. The title track isn't a hugely original idea but the music makes you ignore that.

Paschendale is one of Maiden's absolute best tracks, definite peak of the reunion era along with Empire of the Clouds.

The rest of the tracks are all solid. I don't agree with the sentiments of New Frontier but think the ideas are expressed well especially for a novice writer. I can't say the same for Age of Innocence though.

Wildest Dreams 8
Rainmaker 10
No More Lies 10
Montsegur 8
Dance of Death 10
Gates of Tomorrow 8
New Frontier 8
Paschendale 10
Face in the Sand 9
Age of Innocence 7
Journeyman 9
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Wildest Dreams - 7
Rainmaker - 8
No More Lies - 9
Montsegur - 7
Dance of Death - 9
Gates of Tomorrow - 9
New Frontier - 7
Paschendale - 10
Face in the Sand - 9
Age of Innocence - 7
Journeyman - 7

Average - 8.09