Artist: Iron Maiden
Date Released: September 3, 1984
Produced By: Martin Birch
- Aces High (4:29)
- 2 Minutes To Midnight (5:59)
- Losfer Words (Big 'Orra) (4:12)
- Flash Of The Blade (4:02)
- The Duellists (6:06)
- Back In The Village (5:20)
- Powerslave (6:47)
- Rime Of The Ancient Mariner (13:34)
There is no Iron Maiden album free of bad moves. That is what I would say, quite sure of myself, if I forgot the existence of Powerslave. But then again, quite sure of myself, I say that this record is impossible to be forgotten.
While all albums front-lined by Bruce Dickinson tended to be very balanced between the instrumental and the vocal parts, Powerslave shows the band with a slightly stronger instrumental focus, giving the singer something of a challenge and, for that matter, a tremendously well-accomplished one, as here Bruce casted with high authority his most fierce and tight lines of voice. Nicko McBrain’s drumming on any other Maiden record sounds like little more than a poor effort if compared to the ugly man’s work on this masterpiece. Murray & Smith never before or again played so blazing, acid, dramatic and compelling phrases such as these (no one did, actually – at least not in any style familiar to this one) and differently from the other times around, here they seem to be working not as two artists with one purpose, but as one single force equivalent to a whole conglomeration of talent and ability. Band leader Harris doesn’t get away from his nowadays tired approaches, but it was in Powerslave that these approaches were crystallized to its most effective forms.
From the flawless heart-blasting “Aces High” to the astonishing interpretation of Samuel Coleridge epic poem closing this musical journey, Iron Maiden wrought a sound barrier against all defects, protecting the success of a larger-than-life expression on dramatic heavy music.
Iron Maiden’s greatest. Period.