The MAIDEN Years: 2018/19/20/21/22/ad infinitum (Rock in Rio and Nights of the Dead)

MaidenUlster

Trooper
When I first got into Maiden AMOLAD was the most recent album. I think you're absolutely right @Mosh that the committment to and belief in the new music made Maiden relevant to younger fans. I didn't feel as though I had "missed the boat" by not being around in the 80s. Maiden were still doing new and exciting things and, even if I missed the 80s, I could be around for this whole new, also great, chapter of the band's history.
Before then my previous favourite band had been AC⚡DC. The contrast is striking.

The first time I saw Maiden live was July 2010, on the first leg of the Final Frontier Tour. When I found out they were playing mostly post 2000 material I was hyped. I loved (and love) those albums and the setlist was a dream. I didn't mind not hearing RTTH etc, I wabted to hear who the band were now. It remains probably my favourite ever gig. Wicker Man is, for my money, the best set opener in the Maiden catalogue. I had just had my first ever pint and was hysterical when they hit the stage. I didn't even particularly mind when someone punched me in the face because his gf was squashed against my back and couldn't breathe.
 

Abiathar

Trooper
AMOLAD is a funny one for me. I just find it hard to get into. I find it a hard slog to listen to. I have tried many times to get into it but just can’t. There are some amazing musical elements to the album, I particularly like The Legacy, but as a whole it just doesn’t gell with me.
 

MaidenUlster

Trooper
Re: AMOLAD - I don't get why people don't like Different World. I think it's a great track. Dramatic and dark and sets the scene. Great chorus too. The music video is a bit goofy so maybe that puts people off?
I've just been relistening to AMOLAD and I forgot how great the last two songs are. I still remember the first time I heard the riff in "Lord of Light" that comes in after the intro. It floored me.
The intro in "the Legacy" where they alternate between quiet and loud, with the acoustic guitar high in the mix even on the loud parts, is genius.
I remember going through a phase where "For the Greater Good of God" was one of my favourite Maiden songs. The lyrics are great, and it has some anthemic lead lines, particularly after the solo sections just before going back into the chorus. Possibly a bit ambitious for a novice guitar player to try to learn from start to finish though...
 

Spaldy

Ancient Mariner
@Mosh

A whole write up on AMOLAD and no mention of its best song, The Longest Day. For shame! ;)

I missed this tour sadly and regretted it ever since. I'm glad I got to see then play FTGGOG on the LOTB tour but I honestly would have preferred TLD. Probably because Maiden don't mess around when writing about WWII battles and it doesn't get much bigger than D-Day. Can't wait to pop in my vinyl copy in a days.
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Different World dark? Hmm, interesting.
Musically it's very uplifting.

@Mosh you noted the small amount of Janick songs he co-wrote on AMOLAD. His amount of solos is at least as striking. Just 4 solos!
Adrian had 4 solos on Brave New World.

@Zare that comment about Steve who he visited first, can we find that again? I'm doubting if that was said in 2010. It would make sense because it followed an album with a lot of strong Adrian input.
 
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MindRuler

Ancient Mariner
The year 2006 is also not an unimportant time for us at Maidenfans. Some of our oldest active members met each other for the first time in real life.
It was the start of a tradition: a Maidenfans meet up, or meet. @Perun and @national acrobat (who is not that active anymore) started in 2006 with some other people.

I think they even met Maiden in the train once, after the concert in Paris. I was jealous! :--)

I met these guys for the first time in 2008. I met them and several other friendly people in the years afterwards (2011, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 in relation to Maiden events in Berlin, London, Stockholm, Cardiff/Paris, Oslo, the Netherlands and a few other times in other contexts). Per and Nush also went to Boston!

(Perhaps these Maidenfans meets started earlier but then I don't think any of these people are still active anymore, I could be wrong though)
It´s nice to meet other Maiden fans. :)
 
It's timely to be discussing AMOLAD, given that the album turns 15 years old tomorrow. :)

Objectively, I'd agree that this is the band's greatest record of the 21st century, and that playing the entire album on tour was an inevitable summation of the band's ethos during the first wave of the 'reunion era'.

I must admit to being pleased that the band relaxed the somewhat self-serious attitude of 2006 in the years that followed.
 

Zare

Uniformly distributed hostility
@Zare that comment about Steve who he visited first, can we find that again? I'm doubting if that was said in 2010. It would make sense because it followed an album with a lot of strong Adrian input.

2010?

I was referring to 2006 as Mosh was speaking about Paschendale being a blueprint for a lot of AMOLAD.
The quote from Harris is in the Making Of.
 

Mosh

Winner of the 2020 Dumbest Comment Ever Award
Staff member
@Mosh you noted the small amount of Janick songs he co-wrote on AMOLAD. His amount of solos is at least as striking. Just 4 solos!
That is true, although each of those four solos are among some of his most memorable work. Especially Brighter Than a Thousand Suns and The Legacy. Similar situation on TFF, few solos but all top. These two albums have increasingly become my favorite Maiden albums for guitar solos.

Re The Longest Day: definitely a great song that has grown on me a lot over the years. The instrumental section in particular is awesome. Love the harmonies and both solos. Also that sludgy machine gun riff.
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
(Sorry for looking ahead a bit but if we compare we need to look at several albums; just in case I did some stuff in spoiler tags)

In 2006 but especially 2010 there was quite some discussion about how Janick was (not) used, especially in songs not written by him.
In 2015 we see more guitar solos per song and Janick was allowed to play more solos than on the previous records (his number of contributions on TFF are a slap in the face of people who care about all the amigos). Another good thing: he doesn't do the third solo as often as on previous albums. His solos appear in unexpected places.
I'm very, very curious if this trend will continue on Jenjutsu.
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Of course it is also about quality. And other aspects besides soloing.
Perhaps you may find his amount of solos unimportant (a non issue). Any limits? 4 or 5 was fine. Is 3 solos also enough? 2? 1?
I think that such a small amount, on so many minutes of music would be a showcase of inequality, which was somewhat corrected in 2015.
 
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Mosh

Winner of the 2020 Dumbest Comment Ever Award
Staff member
I don’t mind jumping ahead a bit for this topic, it is difficult to talk about the solos on this album without comparing them to later albums. There are a few factors at play here. AMOLAD is the beginning of writing credits becoming less collaborative and varied, culminating in Senjutsu. Going back all the way to No Prayer through Dance of Death (with some exceptions, namely The X Factor) you start to see more input from Dave Murray. He has two writing credits on Virtual, three (!!) on BNW, and two on Dance of Death. Bruce is also working with all three guitar players on BNW/DOD. And, of course, Dance of Death is still the only Maiden album where every member contributes to the writing. A byproduct of this, imo, is more variety in the solos. Gers is a much more prominent writer on BNW/DOD so naturally he is going to get more solos.

With AMOLAD, the writing credits are a lot less even. Adrian Smith is the primary songwriter among the guitarists with 5 songs. Gers is down to only two songs and Murray only one. On TFF, this trend continues. Smith is up to 6 songs, Gers 2, Murray 1.

If there’s only one solo on an Adrian Smith song, Smith is going to play the solo. If there are two solos, Murray gets the second solo 99% of the time (that 1% being BTATS). So Gers is only going to get a solo on a Smith penned song if there are 3 solos. It also seems like on Dickinson or Dickinson/Harris songs, the solo is going to go to Adrian most of the time (and probably Murray for the second solo).

Looking at TBOS, we see some trends change that actually help Gers’ chances of getting a solo. For one thing, Dickinson is writing exclusively solo or with Smith. Based on the solo spread, it seems like Gers is more likely to get a solo on a Smith/Harris song than a Smith/Harris/Dickinson or a Dickinson/Smith song (is there reason to think Bruce isn’t as fond of Janick’s soloing style compared to Adrian?). On Senjutsu, these trends continue. Bruce only works with Adrian, and his input is limited to three songs. Gers has two songs again, we can probably assume solos on both of those. For as long of a track as it is, a solo on Senjutsu doesn’t seem outside the realm of possibilities (although it seems rare that a Maiden opener has more than 1 solo). The best news for Gers solo enthusiasts is 4 Harris songs. Harris tracks almost always features solos from every guitar player and they seem more likely to have more variety in the solo selection. Expect at least two Gers solos, probably more. For that reason alone, I expect we’ll get the most Gers solos on an album since the 90s.

P.S. I didn’t notice until this conversation that Adrian has a solo on every single TBOS song!
 
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