Senjutsu - Eight Months Later

dickinson1978

Educated Fool
One of the most solid albums they've done along with BNW and AMOLAD for me. Apart from the Darkest Hour which Im not a big fan of, all of the others range from very good to outstanding songs. A great album, no doubt about it
same here....the parchement and darkest hour but i love the rest
 

Josh

Ancient Mariner
As Bruce said, Senjutsu is a more varied album than The Book Of Souls and I agree with him.

But is it really? TBOS has Empire Of The Clouds which is something Maiden has never done before. Mix that in with a ballad and the epics and you have something more varied than Senjutsu. This isn't a bad thing because I'll spin Senjutsu over TBOS nine out of ten times.
 

Ironalice

Ancient Mariner
But is it really? TBOS has Empire Of The Clouds which is something Maiden has never done before. Mix that in with a ballad and the epics and you have something more varied than Senjutsu. This isn't a bad thing because I'll spin Senjutsu over TBOS nine out of ten times.
I really dont think Senjutsu is that varied at all, other than opening the album with a slow burner, the intro / outro to Lost In A Lost World and WOTW being a little different to typical Maiden the rest is really what you expect.
 

Shmoolikipod

Stranger to the Light
It's growing on me, but it's still in the bottom half for me.

Stratego is fine but uninteresting. Speed of Light and The Alchemist are so much better as far as the short blazers go. Now, Days of Future Past is more comparable to them, and I want to say it's my second favourite from the album.

Lost in a Lost World is catchy as hell, and honestly that's pretty cool. I can't think of songs with that running time that aren't epics. My problem with it initially was actually exactly that, it didn't feel big enough compared to the other long songs. But the more I realize it doesn't have to be another Paschendale, the more I like it.

TWOTW makes me go, "neat", and then I forget about it. Just don't care for it much. The Time Machine has found friends in Lightning Strikes Twice and Charlotte the Harlot close to the bottom of my rankings.

The title track makes me go, "awesome!", and then, "but why the synth???" Seriously, what's up with that annoying synth sound throughout the album? It rarely actually adds to the atmosphere and it's especially bad on Senjutsu and Stratego. If TFF has bad production as its "overarching issue", then Senjutsu has the synth. The synth and guitar lines following the vocals too often.

Darkest Hour is great. I love the ambient opening, and the vocals are fantastic in this range. Also nice to hear the "3 chord band" do a little more harmonically. I think it's a (surprisingly) unique ballad in the discography, like what's the next closest thing? Strange World? Wasting Love?

Now, the elephant(s) in the room:
Death of the Celts is probably bottom 4 or so as far as long songs go. It has some really cool parts, for example I love the bass going higher in the instrumental section. And it feels great when the verse finally moves to the chorus. But dammit it's far too long.

The Parchment is weird. The release in the "heading for afterlife..." part remains one of the most satisfactory moments in the entire discography. I'd give the song a 10 if it was for that part alone. But I agree 100% with GhostofCain and Ironalice. The solos may be good, or they may not be, I can't tell because it's so self-indulgent that it loses me 4 minutes in until the vocals come back. And once they do, we still have the entire Transfăgărășan ahead of us. It's a long long road and not always worth it.

Finally, Hell on Earth, and it's so many cuts above the rest here it's ridiculous. I'm talking top 10, when in my most recent ranking of the songs (which I already don't agree with...) The next highest from the album was Days of Future Past at #74. This song goes through the motions so masterfully, and it's possibly the most dynamic song of them all, it's like a compact Empire of the Clouds in this regard! Every little quirk here is so perfectly placed, from the "Prey!" to the tempo change as the solo comes crashing down... They really bring this already fantastic song to life, and it boasts such a great chorus too!

I rank the reunion albums
1. The Book of Souls
2. A Matter of Life and Death
3. The Final Frontier
4. Brave New World
5. Senjutsu
6. Dance of Death

With a decently sized gap between 4 and 5. Both Senjutsu and DoD suffer from that unevenness problem in a way the others don't. You have a top 10 song and a bottom 10 song on the same album.

One of the strengths of the album, I guess, is that it's very varied. You have a ballad, the short rockers, 3 epics of different tastes, the doomy opener, and the slower
stuff (TTM and TWOTW). And whatever LIALW is.

What album competes with this? AMOLAD is just one mammoth after another. Surely nothing from the 80's. Dance of Death has some variety, maybe that's where the unevenness of both it and Senjutsu is born.
 
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Kalata

Out of the Silent Planet
TBOS has Empire Of The Clouds which is something Maiden has never done before.
Yes, but EOTC, the outro of IESF and maybe the outro of TMOS are the only ''new things'' for Maiden in the album. Then we have the drums in Senjutsu, the riff in TWOTW, the intro/outro of LIALW, a proper ballad without heavy parts and a song with 6 solos. It's the most varied Reunion era album.
Darkest Hour is great. I love the ambient opening, and the vocals are fantastic in this range. Also nice to hear the "3 chorus band" do a little more harmonically. I think it's a (surprisingly) unique ballad in the discography, like what's the next closest thing? Strange World? Wasting Love?
Darkest Hour is indeed a unique ballad in the band's discogrpahy. And Senjutsu is one of the band's more interesting and varied albums.
 

chaosapiant

Ancient Marinade
Why are we assuming that “varied” album means “album where the band tries new things?” That’s not how I interpret the word “varied.” The way I think Bruce means it is that the songs on Senjutsu all sound unique and different from each other. They all sound like they could be on their own album. And by that token, I think Bruce is right.
 

TheMercenary

Ancient Mariner
My ranking according to my mood today :

1) Brave New World
2) A Matter Of Life And Death
3) The Book Of Souls
4) Dance Of Death
5) Senjutsu
6) The Final Frontier
 
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