IRON MAIDEN ALBUMS SURVIVOR: POWERSLAVE WINS

Satisfied?


  • Total voters
    26

Mosh

Winner of the 2020 Dumbest Comment Ever Award
Staff member
Being dated is part of its charm. It's an 80's album in every way and I appreciate that.
 

Stardust

Mr. Blue Sky
I agree with Mosh. The dated 80's sound is what makes it special in the Maiden discography. SSOASS also had a similar sound but not as striking as SiT.

One good example of dated 80's sound being great is Mystic Rhythms by Rush. In any other decade, the song would have lost like 90% of its staying power and well...mystic-ness.
 

JudasMyGuide

the Office Block Persecution Affinity CEO
The dated 80's sound is what makes it special in the Maiden discography. SSOASS also had a similar sound but not as striking as SiT.

I used to think so, too, but lately I've reconsidered that. It's alright if the album/piece of art sounds/looks like a product of its era, but on the other hand, if it tries and goes a long way to sound "contemporary", it loses some of the timeless quality. Many 80's albums had this problem and as a result, many of them sound the same. SIT is a bit annoying in that regard, and screams "1986!" to me, and not in a good way.

Indeed, SSOASS has similar sound, but much subtler and therefore more tasteful and timeless.

There are many people who made explicit 80's sound good, though. Gabriel's Melt is 80's through and through, yet absolutely amazing.
 

Whooten

Ancient Mariner
I don't think SiT is really part of it's era. Other albums that came out in 1986:

Master of Puppets
Peace Sells...But Who's Buying
Reign in Blood
The Ultimate Sin
Pleasure to Kill
Rage for Order (okay, somewhat similar to SiT in sound)
Turbo

I have always thought of SiT as Maiden's Turbo. A very different sounding album that didn't really have the staying power that the more "classic" albums.
 

The Flash

Dennis Wilcock did 9/11
Many 80's albums had this problem and as a result, many of them sound the same. SIT is a bit annoying in that regard, and screams "1986!" to me, and not in a good way.

I strongly disagree with that. I think the 80s sound actually lifted a lot of shit/mediocre albums to be better than what they would be in any other era. The sound of the 80s has something majestic about it.
 
I don't think SiT is really part of it's era
Oh but your three first examples are thrash metal which back then only the toughest metalheads listened to. I did not hear SiT back then, but I did listen to the radio extensively in 1986 (I was 13) and, trust me, SiT SCREAMS 1986 at the top of its lungs. And not even 1987. No. Specifically 1986.
 

Whooten

Ancient Mariner
Oh but your three first examples are thrash metal which back then only the toughest metalheads listened to. I did not hear SiT back then, but I did listen to the radio extensively in 1986 (I was 13) and, trust me, SiT SCREAMS 1986 at the top of its lungs. And not even 1987. No. Specifically 1986.

That's funny, I was also 13 at the time. I have very strong memories of riding my bike 5 miles to get SiT (on cassette!) and being extremely disappointed. Mostly because it was a huge departure in sound from PoM/Powerslave.

Sure Thrash really took off at that time, but there was also the Bon Jovi/Dokken/Ratt/Poison/Cinderella thing going on. Maiden (and Priest) seemed "caught in the middle." So in my experience, I was "graduating" away from the early-80s metal (where Maiden, Dio, Rush and Ozzy were my favorite bands) to the more extreme sounds of Thrash. Believe me, I was not among the toughest metalheads then!

In sum, Spaniard, I agree that SiT is closer to the prevailing pop sound of 1986, but NOT representative of the direction metal seemed to be heading. And NO ONE who listened to Maiden in 1986 was listening to pop. Hence, I believe SiT was a misstep by Maiden (as was No Prayer) in an effort to appeal to the masses, instead of sticking to their guns and doing it their way, as they always claim they do.
 

MindlessPieces

Educated Fool
What's the stupidity with synth guitars being a 'failed experiment'? That doesn't reflect on sound at all. If you knew what you're talking about, you'd know that in '86 they used string MIDI controllers and in '88 key MIDI controllers. Both were hooked at generic Roland sound banks at the time. You can find Keeney's story how they hunted down a replacement sampler/sound-bank while on tour in USA.
Whatever the reason, it just doesn't sound good, it certainly detracts from the quality of the songs themselves. Given today's times and technology you would never make an album with the sound of SIT.
I mean, just listen to Caught somewhere in Tine. The very first thing you hear, before any musical note is static, and it continues on throughout the album and the vocals feel distant and processed. The sound is just horrible on that album. Unfortunately I don't have the technical vocabulary to explain it, but I hear it and don't like the sound of that particular album.

Regarding repetition on the more recent albums. Well, I don't really care. Repetition is a part of music.
 

Mosh

Winner of the 2020 Dumbest Comment Ever Award
Staff member
With some exceptions, I think the repetition argument is a bit lazy. Repetitive choruses are a Maiden signature. It's like when people criticize a Dream Theater song for being too technical or a Judas Priest song because they're singing about Metal. That's what they do. That's fine if you don't like repetition, but lets not pretend that SIT is somehow exempt from that criticism.

Personally, I think it usually works. There are a couple Maiden songs where it's a bit too much, but those are the exceptions and they exist both in the 80s and the 00s albums.
 

Mosh

Winner of the 2020 Dumbest Comment Ever Award
Staff member
I'm just glad Maiden don't try to make albums that sound like the 80s now.
 
Well I wouldn't mind if they recorded an album that sounded like their 80s - Killers and NOTB are particularly good sounding. And compare two albums recorded the same year: Powerslave and Deep Purple's "Perfect Strangers". Ugh. Now that one is ugly. The worst thing that ever happened to Purple was Roger Glover learning production. He does the most two dimensional soundscapes ever.

ETA: Actually "Speed of Light" *is* 80s sounding and it's awesome.
 

Zare

Uniformly distributed hostility
Whatever the reason, it just doesn't sound good, it certainly detracts from the quality of the songs themselves. Given today's times and technology you would never make an album with the sound of SIT.
I mean, just listen to Caught somewhere in Tine. The very first thing you hear, before any musical note is static, and it continues on throughout the album and the vocals feel distant and processed. The sound is just horrible on that album. Unfortunately I don't have the technical vocabulary to explain it, but I hear it and don't like the sound of that particular album.

Regarding repetition on the more recent albums. Well, I don't really care. Repetition is a part of music.

That's not static, that's Harris's bass line layered with synth pad. And it ends when song goes into full tempo around the minute mark.
Like I said, do not point to non-existent technical reasons to justify your negative opinion of some record. You have right to it none the less.
 
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