Please post reviews and thoughts on Senjutsu here

Gk1

Here I sit in a serenade of glory!
Yes, it makes perfect sense. Run to the Hills revisited, but plodding.

By the way, am I the only one who is missing having some interviews with Steve about the album?
Well, Bruce seems to be the "social" guy this time around. Got no problem with that. I mean if you check the interviews he did....they were quite comprehensive.
 

GhostofCain

Ancient Mariner
Well, Bruce seems to be the "social" guy this time around. Got no problem with that. I mean if you check the interviews he did....they were quite comprehensive.

I’d rather have a more balanced view about the album, especially considering that this is the first time in ages than Steve has written 4 songs on his own.
 

Gk1

Here I sit in a serenade of glory!
I’d rather have a more balanced view about the album, especially considering that this is the first time in ages than Steve has written 4 songs on his own.
You got a pont there. And judging by the in depth discussions with Bruce this time around...maybe Steve could provide details he hasn't shared before.
 

The_7th_one

Ancient Mariner
By the way, am I the only one who is missing having some interviews with Steve about the album?
The lack of interviews to Steve for the new album and the fact that we didn't see him since just before the covid in February 2020 when he was promoting British lion in North America… the fact that he thanks to a couple of doctors in this album… makes me suspect that he could have some health issues. I hope I am wrong about it.
 

srfc

Ancient Mariner
The lack of interviews to Steve for the new album and the fact that we didn't see him since just before the covid in February 2020 when he was promoting British lion in North America… the fact that he thanks to a couple of doctors in this album… makes me suspect that he could have some health issues. I hope I am wrong about it.

I'd say you are wrong, BL are about to do a relatively intense 2 month tour supporting the Darkness, certainly more dates in those 2 months than Maiden usually do in 2 months
 

The_7th_one

Ancient Mariner
I'd say you are wrong, BL are about to do a relatively intense 2 month tour supporting the Darkness, certainly more dates in those 2 months than Maiden usually do in 2 months
YOU'RE RIGHT!!! I forget the British lion tour…
 

Spaldy

Ancient Mariner
I'd say you are wrong, BL are about to do a relatively intense 2 month tour supporting the Darkness, certainly more dates in those 2 months than Maiden usually do in 2 months
Yeah but shorter sets and nowhere near the energy of a Maiden show.
 

DJMayes

Ancient Mariner
I guess it's time for some updated thoughts:

I initially described the album as "disappointingly familiar". I think that's perhaps harsh, but it was an accurate sentiment after a first listen when the main things I remembered were specific recycled sections - as the rest hadn't had time to sink in. It still applies to certain songs, mind, who by and large reuse sections other songs used better. The Bruce/Adrian section is in general better. Janick and Steve have some hits and some misses. I like the use of keyboard throughout.

More specific track thoughts:

- Senjutsu is a masterpiece that manages to somehow mix feeling very heavy and very melodic at the same time. The chorus is amazing and it's the bit that I find most often randomly popping into my head.

- Stratego feels a little light on the album now, especially with the keyboard chorus that sounds like it was born in the 80s, but that's no issue. It's still incredibly catchy, and "I hear you calling my name" is one of the best vocal lines on the album.

- I gave The Writing On The Wall a muted reception, but it's one of the better songs here. Super strong, amazing solo.

- Lost In A Lost World is really disjointed. I dislike the "robotic" intro, and we didn't need ATSS/WTWWB again, but it's fun enough to listen to.

- I really love the pace on Days Of Future Past during the verses. If the choruses were as catchy then this would be an absolute favourite.

- The Time Machine is fun enough to listen to, but that guitar part was done better by The Book Of Souls. And that was only an album ago! It's a little early to repurpose it, in my opinion.

- The Darkest Hour is the best track on the album and probably a top 10 Maiden song overall. Absolutely knocks it out of the park everywhere.

- Death of the Celts is fine. No strong thoughts here whatsoever.

- The Parchment is the worst song on the album. It's a whole lot of empty riffing to me, devoid of any hooks. I've listened to it so many times, and yet I can't recall a single part of the first 6 minutes of the song. It does improve after that, but it's nothing spectacular. Too little, too late.

- Hell On Earth is Steve's best song on this album, no questions asked. The acoustic intro is fine, and everything after is just triumphant. There's no other way to describe the general sound of the song. The gallop/vocal melodies are very indulgent, but they just work. The chorus is incredible. Just when you think it's done, it roars back in your face with the "love in anger" line. Glorious.
 

Donner

Ancient Mariner
I've had this album on constant repeat since Friday and I am really happy with how good it turned out. Favorite tracks are Hell on Earth (Steve's best melodies in ages), Darkest Hour, Senjutsu (love how different this is) and The Parchment (nice mash of To Tame a Land/Powerslave/Book of Souls).

My only small gripes are with some production things that bothered me at first but I've gotten used to -
The title track opens with those massive drums but I wished the guitars were heavier when they came in - this doesn't seem as impactful as it could. The drum cadence reminds me a lot of Bruce's Gods of War too which is a fun oddity.

How is it possible that an up-tempo rocker like Stratego is the lightest sounding song on this album? This one seems very differently mixed in parts from the other songs, I'm guessing because of the vocal layering and keys. I wish this one sounded a bit heavier, more like the mid-section of Lost in a Lost World or Time Machine which are way punchier. I still love the song though and the melodies are awesome.

I love the intro to Lost in a Lost World and I kind of wish they had kept the heavier bits out - the intro and outro are melodically sublime.

Days of Future Past is great but I feel like it could have been longer.

I don't care how redundant parts of The Time Machine are - that may be the most fun song on here. I need to be careful not to hurt myself from jigging around once it gets going. Awesome tune!

On the first few listens, I thought each of the 3 Steve epics at the end were a bit too repetitious in their sections (like, why are we repeating things 4x when a 2x repeat would have worked just fine), but those are settling in now for me as well.

I've played the melody lick on Hell On Earth (which one? all of them!) on repeat for hours - that song really is something else.

That being said, I think the production, with it's flaws, is the best since BNW really. The extra attention given to the vocals with reverb, delay and layering has been sorely needed for a few albums now (seriously, The Final Frontier is bone dry - those songs would have worked so much better with the wetter production on here).

Tough to rank this because it all seems so new, but at the moment it's right there with AMOLAD for me. The 82 minutes, even after 20+ listens just fly by still. Love it!
 

DJMayes

Ancient Mariner
I thought it sounded more like the Edge of Darkness part. TBOS's melody is over different context (chords) than here
Perhaps; I'd listened to TBOS the day before Senjutsu was released so it was fresher in my memory.
 

Randalf

Ancient Mariner
So far I've listened the whole album three times from start to finish.

Thought of the day:

AND THE VOICES THAT YOU HEAR NOW AND THE VOICES IN YOUR HEAD

Amazing!

Also, that chorus. I like the song as it is, but you could basically take some of the melodies along with that chorus and make an Eurovision winner out of it. It's catchy.

wish I could go back
I'll never be the same again
Bled for all upon this HELL ON EARTH


It's a nice closer. The Parchment is good too. Death of the Celts is... Eh. It's fine, but it's got all the Steve tropes. I think it's the only song the record that somewhat hurts the flow. But I probably need to give the album a couple of more spins before any deeper verdict.

Still, if someone made a Steve-bot with using all of his previous compositions, DOTC is exactly what that AI would compose.... :p
 
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