“Senjutsu”, Iron Maiden (BMG)
Iron Maiden is not a band for those with short attention spans.
Since leaving England in the late 1970s in what would become Britain’s New Wave of Metal, Iron Maiden has never been one to give record companies the three-minute hymn genre. they dreamed of.
Instead, they wrote and performed (and performed a bit more) until they were good and satisfied, and the result was often an epic track of 8-10 minutes or more, fully exploring a topic or an idea until nothing is left to chance.
This is particularly the case on their 17th studio album, “Senjutsu”, which translates from Japanese as “strategy and tactics”. It deals with Iron Maiden’s obsession with war and battle, from the title track to “Darkest Hour”, an ode to Winston Churchill’s perseverance during World War II.
The album’s 10 tracks are an average of eight minutes each, and the last three are 34 minutes combined.
Give singer Bruce Dickinson and Co. props to stick to their musical canons and write a song as long as it needs to be. By the mid-1980s, they were breaking down those barriers with songs like “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”, which lasted almost 14 minutes.
The guitar trio of Dave Murray, Janick Gers and Adrian Smith bring unparalleled firepower to every track, and the duo of bassist Steve Harris and drummer Nicko McBrain have long been among the best in metal.
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