What type of Blaze-era Iron Maiden fan were you?

What type of Blaze-era Iron Maiden fan were you?


  • Total voters
    130

karljant

Ancient Mariner
Whenever someone, anyone, says "my homeland", I imagine some exotic place with culture and cool mustaches and birds and such. When I think of "my homeland" it's just that neighborhood down the street that went to shit in the late 90s. I lack culture.
Ahahahahahahah... great take! Nope... it's merely Portugal. No exotic birds BUUUUUUUT during 95 one could still spot some dense mustaches from the 70's and 80's grand mustache movement (nothing compared with Poland but still considerable! :p )
 

CA Bryers

Educated Fool
I became a fan in '93, so I'd missed out on all the legendary Bruce stuff that came prior, and had only the uncertainty of this new Blaze guy stepping in. As soon as he'd been announced, I tracked down a copy of Live Fast, Die Fast by Wolfsbane. His voice took a lot of getting used to, but I grew to like it. I thought it might be exciting to have more of an unhinged wildman at the vocals, and that's how he vocally came across in the early Wolfsbane days.

Cut to the release of The X Factor, and I was...unimpressed to say the least. It was dry, dark, and worst of all, there was no hint of the wildness I thought Blaze would be bringing to the table. His restraint I figured was an attempt to fit the Maiden formula, so it felt kind of boring to me. Like many, however, TXF took work to really get into, and that was the case for me. I grew to really like it, and when Virtual XI came out, I immediately loved it. Blaze sounded more confident, the overall sound was brighter, and weirdly enough, I thought it was their best album since Seventh Son.

I still really like Virtual XI, too. Even Angel and the Gambler I can get into no problem. Yes, it's repetitive as all hell, but it's a fun song. The 9-minute version would've worked great as an extended live version, a la Running Free on Live After Death, but comes across as weird in studio format.

I saw them live twice, loved both shows (though in retrospect and repeated listens of many bootlegs) it's clear he wasn't strong live with most Bruce material. He had a lot of hurdles (the band not tuning down to accommodate his range, a monitor roadie who left him mostly standing in one spot during the X Factour, etc.), but it always felt like he never really found his place in the band, figured out who he was there. And it's a shame, because nowadays his stage presence is much improved and his vocals are stronger (not to mention most of his solo albums are damn good).

At the time of his firing, I was legitimately sad that he was gone. He was the ultimate underdog in my eyes, and the underdog got kicked aside for the metaphorical prettier ex-girlfriend.
 

chaosapiant

Ancient Marinade
I became a fan in '93, so I'd missed out on all the legendary Bruce stuff that came prior, and had only the uncertainty of this new Blaze guy stepping in. As soon as he'd been announced, I tracked down a copy of Live Fast, Die Fast by Wolfsbane. His voice took a lot of getting used to, but I grew to like it. I thought it might be exciting to have more of an unhinged wildman at the vocals, and that's how he vocally came across in the early Wolfsbane days.

Cut to the release of The X Factor, and I was...unimpressed to say the least. It was dry, dark, and worst of all, there was no hint of the wildness I thought Blaze would be bringing to the table. His restraint I figured was an attempt to fit the Maiden formula, so it felt kind of boring to me. Like many, however, TXF took work to really get into, and that was the case for me. I grew to really like it, and when Virtual XI came out, I immediately loved it. Blaze sounded more confident, the overall sound was brighter, and weirdly enough, I thought it was their best album since Seventh Son.

I still really like Virtual XI, too. Even Angel and the Gambler I can get into no problem. Yes, it's repetitive as all hell, but it's a fun song. The 9-minute version would've worked great as an extended live version, a la Running Free on Live After Death, but comes across as weird in studio format.

I saw them live twice, loved both shows (though in retrospect and repeated listens of many bootlegs) it's clear he wasn't strong live with most Bruce material. He had a lot of hurdles (the band not tuning down to accommodate his range, a monitor roadie who left him mostly standing in one spot during the X Factour, etc.), but it always felt like he never really found his place in the band, figured out who he was there. And it's a shame, because nowadays his stage presence is much improved and his vocals are stronger (not to mention most of his solo albums are damn good).

At the time of his firing, I was legitimately sad that he was gone. He was the ultimate underdog in my eyes, and the underdog got kicked aside for the metaphorical prettier ex-girlfriend.
All these words you typed? Up there? I like all of them! There in the correct order and mirror my opinion so naturally this selection of words must be correct. Chaos Paint likes this post.
 

andruku

Prowler
I discovered later, but i have always liked Virtual XI.
Its alot different from other Maiden albums, the 'energy' is different :)
I've got it on LP, i can play it right through and get a good buzz off it.
Blaze has a great voice. Como Estais Amigos, Thd Educated Fool, Dont Look To... are always on my Maiden playlists
 
It sounded to me like Maiden with the wrong person singing. The instrumentation sounded like Maiden but Blaze + the new album artwork + my waning enthusiasm for Maiden at the time brought on by NPFTD, and which FotD couldn’t revitalize, prior to Bruce’s departure set these two albums up for a poor reception by me.
 

Metal Warrior 330

Ancient Mariner
I've always been into the Blaze era since around the time I got into Maiden and these days I've been listening to Virtual XI more. X Factor is my favorite Blaze album is X Factor but I've been on a Virtual XI kick. They're all great songs
 

Kalata

Out of the Silent Planet
^ This is harsh but probably true - IIRC, after the VXI tour Steve was not sure if they can continue with Blaze (the low album sales were also disappointing). He also was not sure (at first) about the return of Bruce and considered to disband the band. Nicko was not happy with Blaze's live performances too.

Steve also wanted to disband the band after the departure of Bruce in 1993, but Dave convinced him otherwise, if I'm not mistaken again... (I remember reading that somewhere).
 

CA Bryers

Educated Fool
^ This is harsh but probably true - IIRC, after the VXI tour Steve was not sure if they can continue with Blaze (the low album sales were also disappointing). He also was not sure (at first) about the return of Bruce and considered to disband the band. Nicko was not happy with Blaze's live performances too.

Steve also wanted to disband the band after the departure of Bruce in 1993, but Dave convinced him otherwise, if I'm not mistaken again... (I remember reading that somewhere).
Saying he "wanted to" is pushing it. He said several times with his divorce, he didn't know if he had it in him to push on. Dave did, though, give him the kick in the butt he needed.
 
Great question.

I loved the Blaze era and I defended the band to the hilt. But I was only 12 when Blaze got the job and a fan since Real Live One / Real Dead One / Raising Hell. I just thought Maiden was the most exciting band I'd ever seen and heard, and I just wanted the vibe of their 90s material to carry on with Blaze.... Back then I even preferred Janick's live wire energy to H. I just really wanted Maiden to continue having only just discovered them.

Others have mentioned being gutted by the slow intros on TXF and it was same for me, I really hated the Aftermath, 2am etc, it just wasn't exciting. But I loved SOTC, Man on the Edge and all its b-sides too. I even loved Edge of Darkness. Actually, I was quite pleased with TXF, it had enough exciting moments to balance out the parts I found dull. I also loved Virus and adored the circuit board cover art.

On a school trip to Paris in 1996 I bought a bunch of live Blaze era soundboard bootlegs and was actually happy with his performances. I saw them live for the first time in 1998 on VX11 and it was just the most mind-blowing personal experience for a teenager.

Objective opinions? Of course not. But Maiden 1993 - 1998 represented my inner world as a child and early teenager. The fact that Maiden with Blaze fought their corner and made new music meant the world to me. And, the biggest reward for following the Blaze era was to see Maiden become huge in the 2000s. It was like following an underground band that people hated and criticised me for liking in the 90s, to see them explode and become bigger than ever... it was an awesome and validating experience, and the Blaze line-up was the foundation to the resurgence.
 
Last edited:

Black Bart

Ancient Mariner
Great question.

I loved the Blaze era and I defended the band to the hilt. But I was only 12 when Blaze got the job and a fan since Real Live One / Real Dead One / Raising Hell. I just thought Maiden was the most exciting band I'd ever seen and heard, and I just wanted the vibe of their 90s material to carry on with Blaze.... Back then I even preferred Janick's live wire energy to H. I just really wanted Maiden to continue having only just discovered them.

Others have mentioned being gutted by the slow intros on TXF and it was same for me, I really hated the Aftermath, 2am etc, it just wasn't exciting. But I loved SOTC, Man on the Edge and all its b-sides too. I even loved Edge of Darkness. Actually, I was quite pleased with TXF, it had enough exciting moments to balance out the parts I found dull. I also loved Virus and adored the circuit board cover art.

On a school trip to Paris in 1996 I bought a bunch of live Blaze era soundboard bootlegs and was actually happy with his performances. I saw them live for the first time in 1998 on VX11 and it was just the most mind-blowing personal experience for a teenager.

Objective opinions? Of course not. But Maiden 1993 - 1998 represented my inner world as a child and early teenager. The fact that Maiden with Blaze fought their corner and made new music meant the world to me. And, the biggest reward for following the Blaze era was to see Maiden become huge in the 2000s. It was like following an underground band that people hated and criticised me for liking in the 90s, to see them explode and become bigger than ever... it was an awesome and validating experience, and the Blaze line-up was the foundation to the resurgence.
Being just one year older than you, this is pretty much exactly how I felt. ;)
 

SixesAlltheway

Ancient Mariner
@Helmuth Von Moltke

Pretty much spot on description. I also discovered Maiden with a Real Live/Dead One. Bought A Real Live One (first Maiden CD) and then borrowed a Real Dead One at the library soon afterwards :lol: The X-factor was the first new album I got on CD being a year older than you and I championed it and showed it off to all my friends who would listen. I didn't think at the time it was a weak effort at all but again, I just consumed everything Maiden at the time.

Bought the Angel and the Gambler single on a school trip to Berlin in 1998 but then lost a bit of interest after the release of Virtual XI (got into heavier music at the time...) but then re-found Maiden and saw them for the first time in the summer of 2000 With Bruce and Adrian back :)
 
@Helmuth Von Moltke

Pretty much spot on description. I also discovered Maiden with a Real Live/Dead One. Bought A Real Live One (first Maiden CD) and then borrowed a Real Dead One at the library soon afterwards :lol: The X-factor was the first new album I got on CD being a year older than you and I championed it and showed it off to all my friends who would listen. I didn't think at the time it was a weak effort at all but again, I just consumed everything Maiden at the time.

Bought the Angel and the Gambler single on a school trip to Berlin in 1998 but then lost a bit of interest after the release of Virtual XI (got into heavier music at the time...) but then re-found Maiden and saw them for the first time in the summer of 2000 With Bruce and Adrian back :)
Thank the heavens for UK public libraries in the 90s, I couldn't afford to buy music otherwise!

I bought the Real Dead One cassette from Our Price and then borrowed the Real Live One cassette from a public library in west London. I used to marvel at its inner sleeve; Bruce looked 6 foot tall in the photo taken from under the stage! Little did I know he's actually a midget :) Then I got SIT, FOTD, 7th Son, NPFTD all on cassette...

Exactly the same as you, I got a CD player around the X Factor. Then in late 1995 I won a Radio 1 Rock Show competition when they had Blaze and Janick on as guests. I won the whole Maiden back catalogue on CD. Best day ever!
 
Last edited:

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Great question.

I loved the Blaze era and I defended the band to the hilt. But I was only 12 when Blaze got the job and a fan since Real Live One / Real Dead One / Raising Hell. I just thought Maiden was the most exciting band I'd ever seen and heard, and I just wanted the vibe of their 90s material to carry on with Blaze.... Back then I even preferred Janick's live wire energy to H. I just really wanted Maiden to continue having only just discovered them.

Others have mentioned being gutted by the slow intros on TXF and it was same for me, I really hated the Aftermath, 2am etc, it just wasn't exciting. But I loved SOTC, Man on the Edge and all its b-sides too. I even loved Edge of Darkness. Actually, I was quite pleased with TXF, it had enough exciting moments to balance out the parts I found dull. I also loved Virus and adored the circuit board cover art.

On a school trip to Paris in 1996 I bought a bunch of live Blaze era soundboard bootlegs and was actually happy with his performances. I saw them live for the first time in 1998 on VX11 and it was just the most mind-blowing personal experience for a teenager.

Objective opinions? Of course not. But Maiden 1993 - 1998 represented my inner world as a child and early teenager. The fact that Maiden with Blaze fought their corner and made new music meant the world to me. And, the biggest reward for following the Blaze era was to see Maiden become huge in the 2000s. It was like following an underground band that people hated and criticised me for liking in the 90s, to see them explode and become bigger than ever... it was an awesome and validating experience, and the Blaze line-up was the foundation to the resurgence.
I stepped in one year before Fear of the Dark, but recognize quite a bit in this. :ok:
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
@Helmuth Von Moltke

Pretty much spot on description. I also discovered Maiden with a Real Live/Dead One. Bought A Real Live One (first Maiden CD) and then borrowed a Real Dead One at the library soon afterwards :lol: The X-factor was the first new album I got on CD being a year older than you and I championed it and showed it off to all my friends who would listen. I didn't think at the time it was a weak effort at all but again, I just consumed everything Maiden at the time.

Bought the Angel and the Gambler single on a school trip to Berlin in 1998 but then lost a bit of interest after the release of Virtual XI (got into heavier music at the time...) but then re-found Maiden and saw them for the first time in the summer of 2000 With Bruce and Adrian back :)
So far the "shit live album" allegations @GhostofCain.
People such as Helmuth and Sixes caught the bug because of it! Great album to start with !:)
 

Jer

Love in anger
So far the "shit live album" allegations @GhostofCain.
People such as Helmuth and Sixes caught the bug because of it! Great album to start with !:)
Well, let’s be honest, ARLO and ARDO are still shit live albums, even if they served as a gateway for some new fans. The production is bad, Bruce sounds winded and raspy, and don’t get me started on Janick again.

At this point I don’t think I’ve listened to either one in over 20 years. Maybe the next time I’m feeling masochistic I’ll pop one in and see how far I can get…
 

GhostofCain

Ancient Mariner
So far the "shit live album" allegations @GhostofCain.
People such as Helmuth and Sixes caught the bug because of it! Great album to start with !:)

They are still shit as far as I am concerned. :lol:

I became a fan in 1990 and still remember the disappointment after buying those live albums with my pocket money only to find some raw awfully produced stuff in them. Absolute cack.
 
Top