Your Maiden blasphemy

Perun

Academic
Staff member
The biggest problem I have with Fear of the Dark is that it feels more like a compilation album rather than an actual studio album. I think it's the least cohesive album of their career.
This is basically a negative way of expressing a thought I'd been entertaining - Fear of the Dark is probably Maiden's most musically diverse album. It's got a pretty big bandwidth, from power ballad to cock rock (From Here to Eternity, Chains of Misery), pseudo-thrash (Be Quick or Be Dead) and whatever the hell Fear is the Key is supposed to be. It does hurt the flow of the album a bit, and some of the songs, in my opinion, are really not very good, but I think overall, it's a lot more interesting in many ways than most people give it credit for.
 

Number 6

Ancient Mariner
This is basically a negative way of expressing a thought I'd been entertaining - Fear of the Dark is probably Maiden's most musically diverse album. It's got a pretty big bandwidth, from power ballad to cock rock (From Here to Eternity, Chains of Misery), pseudo-thrash (Be Quick or Be Dead) and whatever the hell Fear is the Key is supposed to be. It does hurt the flow of the album a bit, and some of the songs, in my opinion, are really not very good, but I think overall, it's a lot more interesting in many ways than most people give it credit for.
That's not exactly what I was going for with my post. An album can be musically diverse and cohesive at the same time (see: The Final Frontier and, to some extent, The Book of Souls). To me, Fear of the Dark fits only the former category.
 

karljant

Ancient Mariner
The biggest problem I have with Fear of the Dark is that it feels more like a compilation album rather than an actual studio album. I think it's the least cohesive album of their career.
Bingo:
  1. BQOBD: this thing starts with (arguably) the most furious Maiden like tune the band ever composed.
  2. FHTE: then goes to a typical maiden bass intro that makes a turn into a hair metal lalala song
  3. ATSS: then it turns 180 degrees into this eerie awkward tempo slow dirge that out of nowhere blasts into a great Maiden song again
  4. FITK: next we get a miserable atempt to write something in the lines of Zepp's Kashmir gon AOR.
  5. CH: some new hues on this one but yeah... it's Maiden.
  6. WL: what now? A ballad... and a bad one... Maiden writting ballads. Just Great. (FYI Ballad isn't the same as calm or slow song)
  7. TF: a Maiden song indeed. Lackluster but Maiden.
  8. COM: this one is a cross between the hair metal ambiance that begins to pest this record with a slightly more aggressive edge
  9. TA:weird song... seems like an interlude. feels incomplete. But you can hear some Maiden in it.
  10. JBMG: cool Maiden hard rocker (perhaps a bit too hard rock but maiden nonetheless)
  11. WW: this pop rocker could be sing by Sting (as an example) and pass as one of his tunes (if it was reworked to increase its quality heavily)
  12. FOTD: long song with a pompous intro, pompous chorus, lots of guitar harmonies and Maiden all the way (yet the verses are a bit too lalala)
So... I agree with Number 6. No matter if you like the album it or not (I personally don't like the majority of the songs in it) it seems like a patchwork of various influences not within each song (normally that's a good thing) but throghout all songs (normally this ends up in one of 2 results: utter masterpiece or utter disaster) that cannot hold itself in a minimum of coherency.It's the album that pictures Bruce's need to make something new and the band trying to tag along that spirit. No wonder the result wasn't satisfying and he ended up leaving the band...
 

Perun

Academic
Staff member
That's not exactly what I was going for with my post. An album can be musically diverse and cohesive at the same time (see: The Final Frontier and, to some extent, The Book of Souls). To me, Fear of the Dark fits only the former category.
I agree, I just wanted to point this out. When you said it feels more like a compilation, that's pretty much the thought that comes to mind when I think of the album and the diversity I mentioned.
 

Mosh

The years just pass like trains
Staff member
I agree Fear is easily the band’s most musically diverse album. It’s just diverse in the wrong ways and abandons a lot of what makes them interesting.

The Apparition is far from the worst thing on the album, but the recent fascination with that song on the forum has made me less of a fan (similar thing happened with The Fugitive a few years ago).
 

Perun

Academic
Staff member
I agree Fear is easily the band’s most musically diverse album. It’s just diverse in the wrong ways and abandons a lot of what makes them interesting.

The Apparition is far from the worst thing on the album, but the recent fascination with that song on the forum has made me less of a fan (similar thing happened with The Fugitive a few years ago).
We have those fads all the time. One time, everyone hated on Paschendale, another time Hallowed was nothing special... I don't really pay attention anymore.
 

Magnus

Olden Horde
For the most part I am with you on this. However as we move further away from each release time is the cruelest judge. IMO none of the albums after FOTD stood the test of time.

PS: good to be back
Good to see you back mate.
 
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Zare

Automaton Sovietico
I never disliked the Apparition and the solo section is quite good. It should've been a chug driven song but the production is wrong for that type and Nicko basically kills the song (in a negative way) with his Virtual XI level of enthusiasm. I don't usually give much flak to drums (or lack of) on VXI because they simply took a wrong production choice, but here we have a candidate for his worst performance off the career.
 

Formula409

Invader
Another one:

The X Factor is not a bad sounding or badly produced album. In fact it sounds a lot better than No Prayer or Fear Of the Dark.
 
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