Question of the Week




Welcome to “Question of the Week,” a (sometimes) weekly debate amongst the MetalSucks staff regarding a recent hot button issue.

Since we saw Iron Maiden play a set list comprised mostly of newer songs this week, we decided to ask our writers:


The MS staff’s answers after the jump.

Awesome! I think Steve Harris is in charge of this stuff, so likely it’s he who presents this intriguing concept: to market Iron Maiden shows as a multi-night experience. I won’t be the only MS journo-hunk to point out that a few years ago, the world saw Maiden’s middle era show (plus “Fear of the Dark” for some reason). And this summer, we’re taking a intensive course in post-Blaze sextet Iron Maiden. Cool. So the tours lock together for the concertgoer, and make better logistical sense than doing the range of material over two- or three-night stands; in that scenario, a group of 50-somethings must rehearse for months to get, uh, 40-60 songs into shape for a tour that will consume, what, a half-decade? No, this way, our doubleheader is delayed, we have time apart, the heart grows fonder, we may rest. Then we reconvene for different songs after a couple of summers. Hopefully, 2013 will bring a Maiden early-days tour and a return to the Killers set. That kinda would complete the cycle, so I just hope this whole thing isn’t the wind-up to retirement. Cuz I’d be forced to remind Harris that I got a death-ray for precisely this type of situation.

-Anso DF

I’m going with lame. On the one hand, it’s gotta suck to be a sort of Legacy Band, playing the same set for 3-4 decades with a new song or two thrown in there. This goes double for Iron Maiden, who, unlike their metal godfather contemporaries, are still putting out arguably decent music. But on the other hand… come the fuck on. While Maiden do still have enough gems in their latter day catalog to not play an Edward the Great setlist, they’re certainly not having the sort of late-career resurgence that totally overshadows their original run. It would make sense if kids getting into the band now were getting hooked on Brave New World or A Matter of Life and Death, but they’re getting in the same way the rest of us did: “Run to the Hills,” “The Trooper,””Number of the Beast,” and so on. There are a baby-sized handful of fans who would truly enjoy seeing Iron Maiden run through a new shit setlist. The rest of that crowd are gonna be pissed that they recognize 3 or 4 songs. Yes, your newer albums are good, gentlemen. But you can’t give the shaft to the folks that gave you the capital to buy your jet and Bruce Dickinson’s feather pants.

-Sammy O’Hagar

I’d say somewhere in-between. ‘Cause I’m actually not sure Sammy’s assertion is correct — when Bruce Dickinson asked the crowd at MSG on Monday night how many people were seeing Maiden for the first time, a HUGE amount of the crowd went nuts, and based on all the singing-along, I was in the minority in asking, “Which fucking song is this?” At some point roughly after Piece of Mind, Maiden stopped being a fast, nasty metal band and became a slick power metal band. A friend at the show put it best when he complained that newer Maiden is “overwrought,” and that while “Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” is a good song, not every song needs to follow in that same vein. These guys always put on a great so no matter what, and new Maiden certainly isn’t bad (I’m glad every generation seems to have their own Maiden material, the same way they have their own James Bond), but at the end of the day, I really just don’t care about anything in the post-Blaze era. Except for Brave New World. That record is pretty terrific.

-Axl Rosenberg

Somewhere in-between.  People getting all bent out of shape that they’re not doing any staples like “Aces High” need to calm the fuck down, because they just did two tours of all the classics.  Not to mention, this setlist does give a nod to their more mainstream hits — I mean, they’re doing “The Number of the Beast” and “Fear of the Dark” (the latter of which I’d be quite happy to live without, because enough is enough).  I’d say it was lame just because it seems like a mix of “meh” songs; they’re good enough without really getting the blood pumping. Plus, they’re not really strong picks, especially the choices off A Matter of Life and Death (where’s “Different World?”).  However, it’s summer and summer means beer and Maiden. Plus “Blood Brothers,” which I love, is on there. So it’s not a show I’m dying to see, but one I’d go to if I had the choice.

-Leyla Ford

I didn’t see it, but my handsome friend the White Whale did. He says: “I went into it expecting the worst. Dream Theater’s setlist was cut brutally short, and that alone left a bad taste in my mouth. Luckily, their opening was solid, both in terms of the song (“Wicker Man” off Brave New World) and how well they played despite the fact that at their age Eddie should be the youngest looking person on-stage. And that same good vibe continued throughout the setlist. I really don’t have any major complaints except that the middle was a bit slow. Also, is it a complaint to say “Hallowed Be Thy Name “still rocks harder than almost everything? If so… yeah. Iron Maiden still slays, and I’m cautiously optimistic for Final Frontier!”

-Dave Mustein

Awesome. As I stated in my show review, we’ve seen the classics before and we’ll see them again. What we are witnessing on this tour is a pretty special moment in Maiden history, and probably the last opportunity we’ll ever have to see some of these fantastic newer songs live. And, as Axl and Dave Mustein are saying, a Maiden show is a Maiden show is a Maiden show, and they’re always incredibly entertaining. People should stop whining and let the band do what they want to do. They’ve earned that right.

-Vince Neilstein

Show Comments
Metal Sucks Greatest Hits