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Iron Maiden - Iron Maiden CD (album) cover


Iron Maiden


Prog Related

3.85 | 562 ratings

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Prog Sothoth
4 stars Iron Maiden's debut is quite an interesting blend of metal, punk and prog. If one were to judge by the cover alone, the metal tag would spring to mind, or maybe a Misfits style horror punk impression would emerge, since that monster's hair is both long and spiky, but it certainly doesn't instill one to think "progressive rock". But there is prog in this puppy. Good prog too.

The key elements are the bouncy and ever busy bass playing of Steve Harris, the abundance of tempo changes and Paul Di'Anno's vocals. Yeah, during the heavier sections he possesses a punk snarl combined with some vibrato hard rock swagger, but during calm mellower sections (which this album boasts moreso than a lot of their later output), his singing reminds me of B.O.C.'s Buck Dharma with a bit more oomph...and that's a good thing.

Songs like Prowler, Running Free and Iron Maiden are punkish metal fist bangers that have as much in common with your typical prog rock band's output as actress Grace Park has with Cthulhu's mother visually, but other tracks have a distinctively progressive approach. Remember Tomorrow jumps between a smooth ballad style and heavy metal with a sudden fast break in the middle that somehow feels seamless in its transitions. There's no chorus either, just soft to loud dynamics that's every bit as memorable as any chorus hook could provide. Phantom Of The Opera is absolutely progressive metal; it actually sounds more prog- related than most of their later lengthy tracks with a cool trippy section after involving beautiful melodic guitar playing followed by Harris hammering solo before the rest of the band joins and builds up the tension. It's a fantastic number, although Paul doesn't add much to it vocally. He's great on Strange World though, a flat out space rock track that doesn't sound like an Iron Maiden tune at all, except maybe for the guitar solos which compliment the song by being tasteful and almost trippy. Charlotte The Harlot sort of blends the punk metal with bits of prog pretty sweetly.

To be honest, I personally prefer this early era of Iron Maiden the most...there's a raw edge to it combined with their prog influences that their more popular later eras lack.

Prog Sothoth | 4/5 |


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