Let's Get Volatile
Even "Sun and Steel" is better than Greater Good and that's barely even a solo.
AmenCan I do a short review here? Move it if not appropriate.
A controversial album from a time when Dickinson left the band. It's obviously problematic in multiple aspects. I can say right off the bat, Be quick or be dead, Fear of the dark, and Afraid to shoot strangers work right off as 1st class Maiden material. However, the album as a whole is plagued by Dickinson's vocal technique choice and Harris' production choice. If you never heard how these songs sound with normal Dickinson and modern heavy Maiden guitars, album versions seem fine but even those best three get improved.
The very good stuff doesn't count for much. Childhood's end, Judas be my guide are great tracks but would be elevated to 1st class status if there were no problems listed above. In the part "tyrant strikes again" Dickinson is almost as unclean as Chuck Schulinder, over a heavy drum groove and riff that are technically, but not sonically there.
The mediocrities count for a lot of songs. They are either songs not working due to lack of heaviness such as The Apparition, due to lack of proper groove such as Chains of Misery, B side stuff such as Weekend Warrior and interesting but completely off Fear is the key, these tracks aren't stylistically Maiden and they aren't executed well. Fugitive isn't bad but it comes off swiftly as stock, in a gut of an album that completely lacks the high point.
The two tracks I left off for the ending are bad example of trying to commercialize, MTV-ize. As such I consider them the worst material of Iron Maiden.
Agreed with everything about your review except the Fugitive which should be a 10.How hard can it be?
Be Quick or Be Dead - great riff, great solos, decent vocals. Always seems to go on for slightly longer than expected. 9
From Here to Eternity - OKish AC/DC pastiche, pretty unspectacular in every way. 7
Afraid to Shoot Strangers - The spiritual successor to my beloved Infinite Dreams, with a fantastic combination of keys and guitars employed. 10
Fear is the Key - Nice intro, rest of the song finds all sorts of interesting ways to be not very good.. Really spoils the flow of the album. 4
Childhood's end - Somewhat proto-Clansman-ish little tune. Nicely atmospheric without losing any energy, the instrumental section is particularly well-executed. 8
Wasting Love - It's a power ballad, but not as we know it. Maiden's usual high standard of guitar work keeps the track from becoming forgettable. 7
The Fugitive - The intro is a bit schizophrenic, but kind of works. Incidentally, much the same could be said of the track as a whole. 7
Chains of Misery - Great little rocker. 8
The Apparition - The fuck is this, self-help metal? A painfully average verse turns into a substantially better mid-section, which only works if you haven't hit the skip button by this point. 5
Judas be my Guide - Why this song wasn't in the '92 live set is completely beyond me. Contains all the elements of a good Maiden song, and combines them in an excellent manner. 9
Weekend Warrior - Nothing bad to say about it, but nothing makes it stand out (especially given its slot in the running order). 5.5
Fear of the Dark - I don't really have to write anything here, you all know this song back-to-front. 9