And what is the occasion? I received musics in the mail from Deke! THANK YOU, BROTHER!!!
In the parcel with the Big Drill Car live album (covered in yesterday’s post) was this solo effort by Bruce Dickinson. Sadly, I already had a copy of it (I mentioned this one in a post on October 16, 2017, that I’d found it in the sale bins in Toronto). However, it was AWESOME that Deke thought to send this on to me – he knows that, compared to him and several others in the Community, I am a (relative) noob when it comes to the powers of the Air Raid Siren, but I am definitely making up for lost time.
Looking back at that post, though, I didn’t actually say anything about my thoughts on this 1997 record, just that I had got it, so now that it has come back into my life again, I’m gonna take a stab at it now.
Bruce Bruce’s second solo outing, this time with help from Maiden cohort Adrian Smith, this is 13 tracks of awesome. Freak starts us out just pounding away with huge guitars and heavy everything, with Bruce’s vocals soaring over top. Follow that, inexplicaly, with 0:38 of oddness as a, what, an interlude track? Sure OK! Starchildren cranks things back up and that wee track is forgotten. Taking The Queen and Omega follow the Maiden template somewhat, gentle intro eventually becomes heavier banger, without taking full gallop, though. The album continues on like this, tons of big heavy rockers meet up with ballad-like tracks like Man Of Sorrows and Arc Of Space (with its gorgeous Spanish guitar), while Welcome To The Pit reminds (a bit) of Sabbath, and so on.
This album rocks. It has everything, and does it all well. It’s obvious Bruce took his solo work seriously! I found one review online that said that (in that reviewer’s opinion, anyway), this was better than anything Maiden had released post-Seventh Son. Haha whut. Alright, so some fans have a knack for overstating their excitement when their hero releases new tunes, but still, this is a damn solid effort that rocks heavy and hard, but also mixes things up nicely. Fully recommended.
Thanks again, Brother Deke!