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The Man Who Would Be King

Discussion in 'The Final Frontier' started by Ranko, Jun 26, 2010.


How good is The Man Who Would Be King on a scale of 1-10?

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  6. 5

  7. 4

    0 vote(s)
  8. 3

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  10. 1

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  1. Mosh

    Mosh The years just pass like trains Staff Member

    This is a strange song, it's not really that long and yet it feels like a journey. It's strange to think that it's almost exactly the same length as If Eternity Should Fail.

    Anyway, there's a lot going on here. The intro all the way up to the heavy buildup is very cool, one of my favorite moments on the album. The actual verses could be a lot better, the vocal melodies are a bit dull and the lyrics are very awkwardly phrased. But the riffing and the prechorus are really cool. I really enjoy the story being told in the song too, Steve has a knack for building an interesting mystery around characters in his songs. I think that's something he learned from Peter Gabriel.

    The instrumental section is very cool, especially the slide melody and the backmasked guitar solo. Something new for Maiden. The twin melody afterwards is glorious.

    This is a hard song to assess, there are things I like and things I don't like. It's not one I go for often, but I enjoy it a lot when I do.

  2. Poto

    Poto Ancient Mariner


    I really like the intro to this one. One of Dave's finest. The entire song is very exciting musically IMO. I like the backwards solo and the guitar playing underneath it. Nice touch.
  3. LooseCannon

    LooseCannon Yorktown-class aircraft carrier Staff Member

    Dio was better.

  4. BeThyJames

    BeThyJames Trooper

    A complex, ambitious song but the different elements don't come together for me. I actually find parts of it boring which is not something I've ever said about Maiden.

  5. MrKnickerbocker

    MrKnickerbocker clap hands


    Dave Murray’s follow-up to The Talisman is the worst song on the album. The Man Who Would Be King feels like a bunch of random pieces glued together with no regard for key or pace. Imagine this: the song begins with a quiet guitar solo. A Murray song starting with a mournful guitar lead, you say? Well, I never! When the band kicks in, the key changes from A to E, and though it shouldn’t sound so out of place, there’s no leading notes helping the song along. It sounds forced. Bruce sounds great, despite the childish lyrics. The solo break is so completely random that it distracts from what is actually a cool instrumental section (I call it the “elephant horn” section). Murray's solo is lost amid a confusion of notes mixed far too low while the elephant horn wails. It sounds cool on its own, but has no relevance to the song. Neither does the chipper unison riff that appears after the solo. The ending refrain with Bruce's wailing and harmonized guitars is great, but again so very random. Sadly, the song never feels cohesive, despite containing a bunch of solid musical ideas. It is the clunkiest, though not the worst, progressive song the band ever made.

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