Discussion in 'The Book of Souls' started by SinisterMinisterX, Aug 22, 2015.
For an eighteen minute song, it always feels fresh whenever I listen to it. I avoided it like the plague when I first got into Maiden because I doubted it would be anything less than indulgent, but man was I wrong. Brilliant storytelling within the lyrics, brilliant composition, and a brilliant listening experience. On a side note, I've actually used this song to introduce non-Maiden fans in my family to the band, and they all love it.
I think the song is a masterpiece and the first 7 minutes, telling the story of the R101, are a wonderful build-up to what comes next with the storm and the crash. The coda is wonderful too and we did get a fantastic epic without a bass intro and bass outro!
Having just heard it after quite some time, I still feel that there are many great sections.
However the structure seems a bit rushed. There is quite a bit of fat that I could do without.
Still just as amazing as the first time I heard it. Some of the most emotional music Maiden has ever put out, the piano helps bring to life this tragedy, yet they still retain Maiden's heaviness later on in the song. Also features some of their best lyrics (Oh the dreamers may die, but the dream lives on...). A true masterpiece and magnum opus, not just for Maiden and Bruce specifically, but also for metal as a whole. This song is one of the greatest epics of all time, yes, even beating ROTAM, which is a good song, nay, one of the greatest ever made, but this one is just maximum epicness. Eighteen minutes? Shit, I thought it was two!
This isn't 10/10. This is 11/10. There are only two songs that I like better in Maiden's entire discography, but comparing said songs, they don't hold a candle to this masterpiece as works of art. This song is truly Maiden's pinnacle. Let's see if they can top it.
Quite simply the highlight of the album and one of the greatest songs the band has ever composed (if not the greatest period). The use of piano and orchestra is notable for an Iron Maiden song and helps lend this epic a certain level of weight and gravitas that few of their other songs possess (with some exceptions like Sign of the Cross and Rime of the Ancient Mariner). It is a highly conceptual, narrative piece where the music tells the story of the R101 airship just as much as Bruce's lyrics do. It starts out very much like a ballad before evolving into a heavy, thunderous pace bringing you along for a dynamic musical adventure. Everyone in the band puts their all into this work and the result is nothing short of spectacular, the 18 minutes fly by like its nothing. The only minor nitpicks I have are a few mistakes I noticed with the guitars (they are playing this live in the studio). Overall a magnificent opus that I have no clue how they'll be able to top if they decide to release a new album. 10/10
Reading through this thread again, I found this quote, and I honestly agree with it. EOTC is one of my favorite Maiden songs period (back you all know that!), and I can say that personally, I've often thought about whether or not this song really is that good. I mean, what I want from Maiden typically is great guitar work, great vocals, great bass, great drums, and great metal. Empire isn't really a metal song. It's more of a rock song than anything, yet still qualifies because it's written by Iron Maiden, like, fuck, if it's them it's metal. Sometimes I'll listen to Rime of the Ancient Mariner and go, jeez, this might be better than Empire. And then I'll listen to Empire and go, nope, it's still better. But Rime and Empire are two completely different songs. One's a 13 minute metal song that doesn't feel like an epic - Rime feels like a metal song that's just a little longer and with more tempo changes but is ultimately a normal song. And somehow, it pulls it off so well that it makes for an amazing epic as well. Empire, on the other hand, is just plainly epic in its scope - it's almost 20 minutes, for Christ's sake! Both are different - Rime is guitar driven, Empire is piano driver. Yet both are still Maiden. Both songs are still made by the best band in the fricking universe, and both songs are masterpieces. Both of them are high up on my list, because both of them are great songs. In the end, EOTC wins out, but despite being completely different than anything else Maiden ever did (well, except for maybe Journeyman), it's still a Maiden song, and as one it holds up so damn well.
Yeah, I'm still not making any sense, Also hey, third time I've posted in here my thoughts on the song. I'm sure y'all don't wanna see my rating again so I'll end with the following quote. LC said it best.
Maiden doesn't need to top this amazing masterpiece. It would be really awesome if they did though!
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