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Iron Maiden - Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son CD (album) cover


Iron Maiden


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4.21 | 737 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Seventh Son of a Seventh Son would prove to be the last album of Maiden's classic era. After the slight experimentation with synths on the preceeding Somewhere in Time, the band decided to embrace guitar synths for their next album, a concept piece dealing with a young psychic who forsees an apocalyptic future and attempts to warn the people in his village, who ignore him. This is sort of like a power metal version of the Greek story of Cassandra who foresaw the downfall of Troy but could not convince her countrymen to flee. This isn't Maiden's best album from a metal standpoint, but from a prog view this is the apex of Maiden's career.

This, like all Maiden albums from Powerslave to Somewhere in Time, contains no filler tracks. From the rocking opener "Moonchild" to the anthemic "Only the Good Die Young," this album never loses its concept and it is pure prog metal. "Can I Play With Madness?" is the striaght-forward single of the album, but it's highly adictive and doesn't subtract from the seriousness of the album.

Every musician works together on this stunning landmark in prototypical progressive metal. Nicko McBrain is a very inventive drummer who never gets the recognition that Steve, Adrian, Dave, and Bruce do. Though not nearly as technical as a Bobby Jarzombeck or a Dave Lombardo or a Gene Hoglan, his bass drums complement Steve's rythm, and his cymabl and snare workouts make him one of the most well-rounded drummers in metal. Adrian and Dave craft superb passages that work in tandem and also let one player solo while the other forges ahead with a new melody. Bruce's vocals are stunning as usual. I view Steve as the John Entwistle of meta; both manage to unleash amazing bass performances while still keeping to the rythm and not breaking the songs to solo.

Every track is killer, but the standouts are The Clairvoyant, The Evil That Men Do, Moonchild, and the stunning title track, with its haunting yet catchy singalong chorus and one of the greatest solos in metal, though not as good as the one found on the title track of Powerslave.

Maiden was a pioneer of synths in metal. Judas Priest incorporated synths into their album "Turbo," which was released around the time of this album and its predecessor. However, Priest failed to expand their sound or their fanbase as the album bordered on pop and fans hated it. Maiden succeeds with this album because instead of backing off, they crafted one of, if not their heaviest album. Fans of prog metal must own this album. It is not the first prog metal album, but it one of the first and helped to forge the sub-genre along with Queensryche's Operation Mindcrime, Rage For Order, and The Warning, Watchtower Energetic Disassembly, and Fates Warning's Awaken the Guradian. Proggies can live without this, but metal fans must own this album. Highly Recommended.

Progressive Grade: B+

Metal Grade: A-/A

1800iareyay | 4/5 |


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