Iron Maiden : The Writing On The Wall Review
By Elberton Cisnero
Iron Maiden needs no introduction in the world of Heavy Metal. The English band’s discography has grown to 40 albums, including 16 studio albums, 13 live albums, four EPs, and seven compilations. Their discography is augmented by 47 singles and 20 video albums. Two electronic games have been released with Iron Maiden soundtracks, and the band’s music is featured in several video games. Iron Maiden is now releasing their single “The Writing On The Wall.”
“The Writing On The Wall” was written by Adrian Smith and Bruce Dickinson and was produced by Kevin Shirley and co-produced by Steve Harris. The single marks the first new music from the band in six years and is accompanied by a stunning video. With a gentle acoustic guitar opening, the anticipation is set until the electric guitars and bass bring the riff in and kick things into action. Dickinson’s vocals are as strong as ever, singing the verse with his impeccable diction and energy. The chorus is catchy and has Dickinson moving to his upper register in fluid arching passages. The guitar solos are melodic and fiery, as every maiden fan has come to expect. The overall song form has multiple sections and textures. The video is a mini-film; Director Nicos Livesey takes up the story: “We quickly found the expertise we wanted, and people were literally throwing themselves at me to work on a Maiden video – we had more than 60 people in 13 countries from Brazil to France, & Romania to the USA to add something to the clip and I’d say their love, passion, and understanding of the band shines through every frame.” Dickinson initially had a concept for the video, which came to fruition in collaboration with two Award-winning former Pixar executives and longstanding Maiden fans Mark Andrews & Andrew Gordon. With partners lining up to get involved with the project, they chose BlinkInk, a London-based animation studio. Dickinson initially had a concept for the video, which came to fruition in collaboration with two Award-winning former Pixar executives and longstanding Maiden fans Mark Andrews & Andrew Gordon. With partners lining up to get involved with the project, they chose BlinkInk, a London-based animation studio.
Iron Maiden is building anticipation and momentum to their upcoming 17th studio album Senjutsu on September 3rd through Parlophone Records (BMG in the USA). It was recorded in Paris with longstanding producer Kevin Shirley and co-produced by Steve Harris. The first single from the album, “The Writing On The Wall,” shows the band is in a creative space and eager to share their latest work. Steve says, “We chose to record at Guillaume Tell Studio in France again as the place has such a relaxed vibe. The setup there is perfect for our needs; the building used to be a cinema and has a really high ceiling, so there’s a great acoustic sound. We recorded this album in the same way we did The Book Of Souls in that we’d write a song, rehearse it, and then put it down together straight away while it was all fresh in our minds. There’s some very complex songs on this album which took a lot of hard work to get them exactly as we wanted them to sound, so the process was at times very challenging, but Kevin is great at capturing the essence of the band, and I think it was worth the effort! I’m very proud of the result and can’t wait for fans to hear it.”
Bruce Dickinson continues, “We’re all really excited about this album. We recorded it back in early 2019 during a break in the Legacy tour so we could maximize our touring yet still have a long setup period before release to prepare great album art and something special as a video. Of course, the pandemic delayed things more – so much for the best-laid plans – or should that be ‘strategies’!? The songs are very varied, and some of them are quite long. There’s also one or two songs which sound pretty different to our usual style, and I think Maiden fans will be surprised – in a good way, I hope!”
Label: Parlophone Records (BMG in the USA)
Release Date: July 15, 2021