The World of Solo Maiden

Eh, the Olsen stuff doesn’t mix well at all with the Skin/ToG stuff, IMO. I don’t think you can make that work as a coherent album unless you re-record the Olsen tracks to sound more in line with the others, like what happened with “Tears Of The Dragon”.
I think if you go into it with a Physical Graffiti mindset, where you can tell that the tracks were recorded at different times, it still works.
It was a bad idea in 1986, a bad idea in 1994, and still a bad idea IMO. The Physical Graffiti approach worked decently for Zeppelin because they had already done some experimenting with genre bending and had a backlog of unfinished material that they could cobble together into an album. Iron Maiden on the other hand really only does one thing (albeit exceptionally well). I feel like Bruce's solo career up to Accident of Birth was a gradual realization that Metal is what he does best. Those Balls to Picasso outtakes are just weak.

Besides, Physical Graffiti isn't a flawless album. There's a lot of excellent material there but it definitely shows that there wasn't a cohesive vision.
Those Balls to Picasso outtakes are just weak.
I really disagree, every time I hear them I find myself wishing they got a better due than just as bonus material on a re-release. To me they're some of the most interesting material Bruce ever did, and stuff like "The Breeding House" or the first "No Way Out" are strong stand-alone tracks and the Olsen material is a lot of fun, almost surprises me every time that I like them as much as I do.

Besides, Physical Graffiti isn't a flawless album. There's a lot of excellent material there but it definitely shows that there wasn't a cohesive vision.
I agree to an extent, but the expansive nature of it makes it the album I enjoy going back to the most. No Zep album is perfect.
Alive in Studio A + Alive at the Marquee Club

It's pretty nuts how much material we have for this period of Bruce's solo career - a studio album, bonus tracks with alternate takes, a "live in the studio" re-recording of previously released material, and a live concert recording. The last two are actually super enjoyable and I didn't find myself as bored with these songs as I expected.

For one thing, Bruce sounds way better while singing these tracks live. Gone are the issues seen on Balls to Picasso itself - suddenly the man has overcome all the obstacles and is soaring as ever before. "Tears of the Dragon", for instance, sounds fucking awesome now. I wish we heard this on the album proper.

Then there's the band. The Skunkworks ensemble has come together (the fourth band Bruce assembled from the era!) and they are really grooving with each other. I was shocked to hear how cool the rhythm section is here. I love Eddie Casillas and Dave Ingraham, but my goodness are Chris Dale and Alessandro Elena rocking out here. Lots of great parts all across the two records, and the style is a lot looser and a little more fun. It's like the material finally stopped taking itself too seriously.

Alex Dickson isn't quite as good as Roy Z, but he holds down the fort with style. The recording of "Fire" from Studio A is ten times better than the original studio version, particularly because of that sick comedown and build up they've extended in the instrumental section. The three classic Tattooed Millionaire tracks (title track, "Son of a Gun", and "'58") are also here and they're solid. The riff to "Millionaire" proves how killer it is even when not played by Janick. And I love the extended drum intro to "Hell No".

All in all, great stuff. It's cool to hear these songs come to life a lot better when everyone is loosened up and grooving with each other. And Bruce working the Marquee crowd during "Hell No" is fucking great. Fun stuff.