To Tame a Land

How good is To Tame A Land on a scale of 1-10?

  • Total voters

The Ancient Mariner

Ancient Mariner
From the Commentary for To Tame A Land:

"Musically however, it is a brilliant masterpiece that begins slowly, breaks into a powerful driving rhythm, and ends with a long and interesting instrumental section inspired by the famous classical piece Asturias by Spanish composer Isaak Albeniz (1860-1909), and which slowly retreats back to the original opening softness. A perfect ending to a near perfect album."

I'm actually learning this piece of music at the moment. It's a beautiful tune! The way the b-string is going through it is quite amazing!

It was originally a piano movement which was used by Albeniz in "Cantos de España", and after his death a music publisher added it to the "Suite Española" which has caused a lot of confusion. It was later arranged for guitar by the guitar god Andres Segovia.

Anyway, when I was playing it, the first bit sounded very much like the solos in it-especially when it's slowing down at the end, shortly before the first ostinato repeats again.

They do indeed sound similar. I'll play that bit of the solo in TTAL in a sec and see how alike they are to play-the notes etc. and I'll let you know [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/smile.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":)\" border=\"0\" alt=\"smile.gif\" /]
'to Tame A Land'

What Maiden have done is taken the melody and moved it an octave higher. That's assuming they did hear the piece and rip it off (remember that there's only a few notes in a key (26 in total on the key of C) so it could just be coincedence)
'to Tame A Land'

I very much doubt it's a coincidence, mate. Too obvious, wouldn't you say?

It's just a shame that Harris didn't credit Albeniz for the inspiration.
'to Tame A Land'

Maybe. The only way to find out would be to ask Steve himself. But yeah, they are identical! Perhaps there was no reason to credit Albeniz-he can hardly sue the band for ripping him off!

It might be the same reason he didn't co-credit Samson for writing Ides Of March...
'to Tame A Land'

I suppose it makes sense. I'd like to have more opinions about all this though [!--emo&:angel:--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/biggrinangelA.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'biggrinangelA.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
'to Tame A Land'

Al the song is based around Asturias. The Intro is very similar , and the bridge is the same melody. There one section before the solos thats a rip off. Ang the harmonic structure is the same the whole song.
'to Tame A Land'

hey mav, has steve mentioned anywhere that he used asturias as inspiration or is it sth that you noted when you compared the 2 songs?
'to Tame A Land'

I am not aware of Steve making any mention of it anywhere. Albeniz is not even included in the album credits!
'to Tame A Land'

Now you can read other visitors' comments on 'To Tame A Land' as well as post your own. Any contribution to the commentary will be much appreciated, may it be cultural references relevant to the song (links to related websites, interpretations that may have been overlooked in the Commentary, and the like) or personal essays related to the topic of the song. Just be aware that messages that are either off-topic or too wacky may be deleted.
'to Tame A Land'

5 out of 5. This song is a big part of the reason that PoM is my favorite album.

I haven't heard the Albeniz piece, but I'd believe Steve stole from it. This tune definitely has a Spanish vibe, which isn't typical of Steve at all.

AM, just a technical correction: there are 7 notes in the key of C. Adding more octaves doesn't really change the number of notes; a C is a C is a C. You're right that 26 of the notes on the guitar fit in the key of C, but that's just an instrument-specific fact. A piano can play over 50 notes in the key of C, but it's still the same key.

Actually, I suspect AM knows that; I'm just trying to make sure the non-musicians don't get too confused. Then again, for all I know, I'm only making matters worse. [!--emo&:p--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/tongue.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'tongue.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
'to Tame A Land'

Thanks for clearing that up, SinisterMinisterX! [!--emo&:)--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/smile.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'smile.gif\' /][!--endemo--]

I was being instrument specific due to it being a guitar solo but yeah, there's only seven different notes.
'to Tame A Land'

A great epic in the vein of Phantom Of The Opera and Hallowed Be Thy Name, though the lyrics are a bit difficult to understand unless you know about Dune. The intro bit is beautiful, making the guitars coming in directly afterwards sound much heavier. I also like the way the harmony part in the middle slows down towards the end of the song.
'to Tame A Land'

It is often argued that Dune is an allegorical novel.
A brief synopsis would be something like this: WARNING: Contains Spoilers.
About then thousand years into the future, mankind is almost extinct. Thinking machines rule most of the universe. A great war between man and machines begins, later known as the Butlerian Jihad, after the family leading it, the Butlers. The war lasted for more than a hundred years, and finally the machines were defeated in the Battle of Corrin. The Butlers took the name of Corrino after the planet on which the battle took place, and the ruler of the new House Corrino declared himself Padishah Emperor of the Known Universe.
The battle itself was led by two generals, one from the family Atreides, and one from the family Harkonnen. During the battle, the Atreides general uncovered an act of cowardice by the Harkonnen (I don't think we know axactly what it is). Therefore, more than ten thousand years later, House Harkonnen and House Atreides still are mortal enemies.
As thinking machines where banned (Even religiously, the Orange Cathoclic Bible (The most important religious book in the Dune universe) states: "Thou shalt not make a machine in the image of Man's mind").
During the war, the Tio Holtzman invented a device which became very common, a shield field. The shield deflects any object moving toward it, at a higher speed than a certain factor (The factor can be tuned), making longrange weapons such as rifles useless. The shield has one other weakness, when shot at with a laserbeam ("Lasguns" are common weapons in the Dune universe), it creates a very powerful explosion. Holtzman's assistant Norma Cenva modified the device for folding space, thus making space travel easier and faster. Plotting a course through foldspace is very difficult though, and computers couldn't be used.
It was also discovered during the war that melange, a substance found in the desert on the planet Arrakis (Caled Dune by its natural inhabitants, the Fremen) gives limited prescience. In larger doses, the prescient ability became even stronger, but it was highly addictive, and withdrawal caused death. Melange prolongs life, though. Therefore, it is the most important thing in the the Empire, and all Nobles ingest it. Since melange is only found on Arrakis, the House which rules Arrakis gains extreme wealth. The ruling power of Arrakis is given by the Emperor to a House of the Landsraad, for a period no longer than a century.
Thus, the Spacing Guild was formed. The Spacing Guild's Navigators live in tanks filled of melange gas, and they are mutated as an effect of the melange. The Navigators' prescience allows them to plot a safe course through foldspace. The Spacing Guild got a monopoly on interstellar travel and interplanetary banking.
The Spacing Guild has no army, but because of their monopoly on space travel, they can stop any act of war. War is permitted, but the Guild mus be paid high fees for transport of troops.
Other mind/body training schools also appeared, such as the Bene Gesserit, and the Mentats.
Bene Gesserit is a Sisterhood of women who have trained their bodies and minds to the level where they can control their bodyly functions with extreme prescion. A trained Bene Gesserit can, for example, stop her own heart and use "Voice", which is a special form of speech used to take control over people.
Some Bene Gesserit undergo a special ritual called Spice Agony in which they take a large overdose of melange. Due to their total control of their biochemistry, they can change the posion (Melange is an effective posion in large doses) to something harmless. If they succeed, and survive, they gain all memories of their female ancestors. A Bene Gesserit who has survived Spice Agony is called a Reverend Mother.
The Bene Gesserit has several breeding programs, the most important aims to create the Kwisatz Haderach, a male Reverend Mother who can gain the memories of all his ancestors, male as female.
Mentats are "human computers", in the third book in the series - Children of Dune, princess Irulan explains that a Mentat has trained his mind to think in many logical steps. Mentats are used to plan certain actions, or to process large amounts of data when an investigation is needed. Being a Mentat is not something every human can achieve, and therefore Mentats are highly valued.

Arrakis, the most important planet in the Empire, is a very uninhabitable planet. The entire planet is desert, desert, desert, desert. Not even an oasis. There is no free water in form of rivers, seas or lakes. None whatsoever. The Fremen, the natural inhabitants of Arrakis, have adapted to the desert. The lack of water is so extreme that Fremen cry very rarely, crying is called "Giving water to the dead". At death, all water in a Fremen's body is collected and added to the tribal reservoir of water. In the desert, all Fremen wear stillsuits ("Without a stillsuit you would fry on the sands so hot and dry, in a world called Arrakis), which recycle all water from perpiration, urine, feces and breath and collects it in a tube
In the desert, the giant sandworms rule. They are more than two-hundred metres long, and worshipped by the Fremen, who call them "Makers", because the sandworms (called shai-hulud) make the melange. The entire process is quite complicated. The Fremen also use the shai-hulud as a means of transportation! They use tools called Maker Hooks to hold one of the Worm's segments open, which exposes the worm's vulnerable flesh, and thus forces it to stay above the sand. The sandworms are drawn to any vibrations in the desert, but the Fremen have devloped a certain type of walking, which allows them to cross the desert without disturbing the worms.

At the beginning of the first Dune book, House Atriedes gains control of Arrakis, in exchange for the water planet of Caladan. What they do not know is that House Harkonnen and the 81st Padishah Emperor, Shaddam Corrino IV, are plotting against House Atreides. House Harkonnen has ruled Arrakis for 80 years, and they have opressed the Fremen, treating them as scum and animals.
On Caladan, House Atreides prepares for the move. Paul Atreides, Duke Leto Atreides' son with his concubine Lady Jessica undergoes a Bene Gesserit test, where he is tortured, and may choose death instead. Paul's mother, Jessica, is of the Bene Gesserit, and has trained Paul in their ways.
What we do not know until later is that Lady Jessica is the daughter of Baron Vladimir Harkonnen (That's right, House Atreides' mortal enemy), and that she was supposed to give Leto a daughter. That daughter would then have children with Baron Harkonnen's nephew, Feyd-Rautha. The Bene Gesserit hoped that this would create.. The Kwisatz Haderach. But Jessica gave birth to a son (The Bene Gesserit can choose the gender of their children), and therefore, the Sisterhood belives that he can be the Kwisatz Haderach, one generation early.

On Arrakis, House Harkonnen launches a huge attack on House Atreides, with Imperial Sardaukar (Elite forces of the Emperor) disguised as Harkonnen troops. The attack succeeds, due to a traitor no-one suspects, and Duke Leto is captured and later killed. Jessica and Paul however, manage to flee out in the desert, and Paul becomes a leader of the Fremen, who call him Muad'Dib after the desert mouse of Arrakis, which can survive in the open desert ("...and the mice that hey call the Muad'Dib)".
In the desert, both Paul and Jessica undergo the Spice Agony, of which the Fremen have a closly related variant of. Jessica is pregnant while undergoing the ritual, and thus her daughter becomes sentinent while in the womb. Pual survives the ritual, and gains prescience, because he is the Kwisatz Haderach.
Two years later, Paul Muad'Dib attacks the Imperial and Harkonnen stronghold at the town of Arrakeen, the Imperial Sardaukar are slaughtered by the Fremen, and Paul Muad'Dib becomes Emperor.

Oh, I should say something about the song! It is a great song, although the lyrics may be a little hard to understand for someone who hasn't read Dune.
Once you have read it though, it all becomes crystal clear.
"He has the power to make it all end" Refers to the threat Paul makes when confronted with the Emperor Shaddam Corrino IV. He threatens to destroy the spice melange by killing all sandworms on Dune, if Shaddam doesn't resign from his throne and makes Paul new emperor. The Spacing Guild immedietly responds and threatens to strand the Emperor and all of his forces on Arrakis, if Shaddam doesn't accept Paul's deal.

Do I get a cookie for writing so much? Everyone who reads it all gets one. [!--emo&:)--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/smile.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'smile.gif\' /][!--endemo--]

Edit: Yes, I have too much spare time.
'to Tame A Land'

I don't have read the book, but I've "seen" the movie : I've slept the whole time ! [!--emo&:D--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/biggrin.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'biggrin.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
It's not my kind of stuff. [!--emo&-_---][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/sleep.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'sleep.gif\' /][!--endemo--]

But the song is amazing and, for me, one of the best Maiden song ever !
The bass line is [!--emo&:bow:--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/bowdown.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'bowdown.gif\' /][!--endemo--] and the solos are [!--emo&:nana:--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/lambada.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'lambada.gif\' /][!--endemo--] (my english vocabulary makes progress day after day ! [!--emo&:p--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/tongue.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'tongue.gif\' /][!--endemo--] )

5/5 for this one !
'to Tame A Land'

[!--QuoteBegin-GomJabbar+Nov 29 2004, 08:19 PM--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(GomJabbar @ Nov 29 2004, 08:19 PM)[/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--QuoteEBegin--]Great info thnx. [!--emo&^_^--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/happy.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'happy.gif\' /][!--endemo--]

[!--emo&:blink:--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/blink.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'blink.gif\' /][!--endemo--] LOL, where did you get your nick? Gom Jabbar is Dune all the way [!--emo&;)--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/wink.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'wink.gif\' /][!--endemo--]

And, am I only one to hear a slight hissing sound after the intro? Maybe it's a sandworm approaching...
And, as for the allegory:
[!--QuoteBegin-][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE([/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--QuoteEBegin--]From a historical perspective, many have noted similarities between the narrative events of Dune, in which a foreign-born native son of an old colonial order unites disparate and warring tribes of religious desert nomads to win freedom from a decaying Imperial power, and the Arab Revolt of early 20th century Middle Eastern history, at which time a British liaison officer T.E. Lawrence mobilized Arab fighters to break the power of the Ottoman Turks in the Arabian peninsula. While there are many parallels, one of the most trivial and bizarre may be that in the film adaptations Dune (1984) and Lawrence of Arabia (1962), both characters representing the old Imperial order (Emperor Shaddam IV and the Turkish Commander, respectively), are played by actor Jose Ferrer. The spice melange is often compared to oil in this context.[/quote]
'to Tame A Land'

Wow, this song is just... stunning. The beautiful exotic guitars are mesmorizing, the bass lines are magnificent, the drums fit the atmosphere, and how Bruce holds those long notes is astonishing. This song inspired me to read Dune and is the reason why Piece of Mind is my favorite album. Although the lyrics are uncomprehindable (sp?) to anybody who is not familiar with Dune - which is why they get so much heat from Maiden fans - it works to the songs advantage by making it more mysterious. This is another one of Steve's mindblowing epics, and used to be his favorite song he ever written (I'm not sure if it still is). It even sounds better live with Dave's guitar solo and Nicko's drum solo at the end. Rating: 5/5
'to Tame A Land'

[!--QuoteBegin-Blade Runner+May 2 2005, 12:14 AM--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(Blade Runner @ May 2 2005, 12:14 AM)[/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--QuoteEBegin--]Wow, this song is just... stunning. The beautiful exotic guitars are mesmorizing, the bass lines are magnificent, the drums fit the atmosphere, and how Bruce holds those long notes is astonishing. This song inspired me to read Dune and is the reason why Piece of Mind is my favorite album. Although the lyrics are uncomprehindable (sp?) to anybody who is not familiar with Dune - which is why they get so much heat from Maiden fans - it works to the songs advantage by making it more mysterious. This is another one of Steve's mindblowing epics, and used to be his favorite song he ever written (I'm not sure if it still is). It even sounds better live with Dave's guitar solo and Nicko's drum solo at the end. Rating: 5/5

I agree completely. It's a shame this song gets critisized for its lyrics, I think they are craftfuly mysterious...
'to Tame A Land'

bow down to the lord! What Steve does on this track is simply amazing! All in all this is definitely one of Maiden's best moments. What else could I give that than 5 stars and my full admiration! Maiden rules, and this proves it
'to Tame A Land'

Amazing, beautiful music. One of my fav epics so far. 5/5. I like the lyrics, too, despite having never read Dune.
'to Tame A Land'

This is an incredible song to play on a bass. Amazingly fun stuff throughout the whole thing. Bass alone gives it 5 stars.