bruce dickinsonJust a few hours ago my pal Axl declared that of the re-Bruced era of Iron Maiden, all of their output since the highly excellent Brave New World should be re-monikered Iron Mehden, and I’d have to agree. Dance of Death and A Matter of Life and Death aren’t bad albums, but they also aren’t that good — I don’t think I’ve listened to either one since they came out. And I’m certainly not alone in these sentiments; when Maiden toured the States on A Matter of Life and Death in 2006 and played the album in its entirety, fans were mighty pissed.

Get ready to be pissed again, because Metal Insider is reporting that the band’s forthcoming U.S. Tour with Dream Theater — which kicked off last night in Dallas — features mostly songs from the band’s past four albums (including the new, as yet unreleased The Final Frontier). Here’s the setlist:

01. The Wicker Man
02. The Ghost Of The Navigator
03. Brighter Than A Thousand Suns
04. El Dorado
05. Paschendale
06. The Reincarnation Of Benjamin Breeg
07. These Colours Don’t Run
08. Blood Brothers
09. Wildest Dreams
10. No More Lies
11. Brave New World
12. Fear Of The Dark
13. Iron Maiden


14. The Number Of the Beast
15. Hallowed Be Thy Name
16. Running Free

Look, I can certainly understand any band’s desire to write and play new material; it must get so boring playing the same old shit over and over. If there’s any band that’s earned a license to play new shit live, it’s certainly Maiden. And I can understand how Maiden might think they did good by their fans as far as classics go with the Somewhere Back in Time Tour in 2008, which housed a gigantic Powerslave stage and consisted of nothing but material from Seventh Son and prior.

At least this time around we get to hear four awesome songs from Brave New World, an album I love love love love. But why can’t the band just mix and match old stuff with new stuff? A Piece of Mind song here, a Dance of Death song there, a Brave New World song here, a Powerslave song there, a brand new song here. Is that too much to ask? Why’s it gotta be one or the other, [almost] all old or all new? I’d think that mixing in a few new songs with mostly old ones would be a great way to enthuse the audience about new material rather than beating us over the head with it.

I think that no one’s really that interested in hearing songs from Dance of Death or A Matter of Life and Death; they’re too recent and they were never well-received to begin with. It’s been 10 years since Brave New World, and I think I’m not alone in really liking that album — so it’s definitely time to trot those songs back out. But the other two re-Bruce albums? Nah.

Anyway, I’m still pretty psyched to see Maiden. I just wish they’d mix up their setlists a little better. Of course, it’s possible that they aren’t playing the same set night after night on this tour… but I doubt it.


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