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5 Favorite Iron Maiden Albums by the Heavy Review
The Heavy Review’s Five Favorite Iron Maiden Albums
Iron Maiden is one of the most incredible metal bands out there. All of their albums from the 80s are great and worth checking out. It’s very difficult for me to make a list like this, but I’m going to do it anyway. The list is in descending order, with #5 being my least favorite and #1 being my favorite Iron Maiden album of all time. I wrote this because I love the band, and I think it could be helpful to newer fans who don’t know the band very well. All of their work is very solid. Let’s also remember that I’m not saying that other opinions are wrong, these are just my personal favorite albums. This being said, please feel free to leave a comment with your opinion.
5. “Seventh Son of a Seventh Son” (1988)
“Seventh Son of a Seventh Son” is Iron Maiden’s grand concept album. It is probably their most keyboard heavy work from the 80s. The sound of the album is still definitely trademark Iron Maiden, but it’s less gritty and even more melodic. I respect the change in the album, and Maiden pulled it off quite well. Songs like “Moonchild” and “The Evil That Men Do” make this a great album. It’s essential listening for any fan of the band, but I feel that they’ve done better things. It’s also one of their more mainstream albums, which is particularly showcased in the song “Can I Play with Madness?”.
4. “Iron Maiden” (1980)
“Iron Maiden” is the debut album from the legendary band. Even from the start, the band had its sound in place. The melodic riffs and speed were all there from this album onwards. The bass is, again, an absolute highlight. “Iron Maiden” is filled to the brim with galloping basslines and excellent guitar soloing. “Prowler” and “Phantom of the Opera” remain as two of my all time favorite Iron Maiden songs. The original vocalist sounds great on this album; he matches the rawer sound that Iron Maiden had at this time. Additionally, it is notable that this album has a very punky sound to it. It’s a lot nastier sounding than everything that came afterwards. Despite this, it has two psychedelic sounding slow songs… a trend that wasn’t continued on later albums.
3. “Powerslave” (1984)
We’re getting into classic album territory here. “Powerslave” is, perhaps, the signature Iron Maiden album. It defines their sound from the early 80s. The songs are absolutely wonderfully crafted; there is no filler on the album at all. The guitar melodies are quite compelling, and beg the listener to come back for more. The drums are great here too, and the bass is very loud on this particular release (always a plus for me). The title track remains one of my favorites from the band, and “Flash of the Blade” is one of their most underrated songs. “Rime of the Ancient Mariner” alone is worth the price of the whole album. “Powerslave” is the one album I would recommend to a new Iron Maiden fan. It displays their signature with some of their most well written songs.
2. “Killers” (1981)
“Killers” is the second album by Iron Maiden, and the last to feature Paul Di’Anno on vocals. It was also the first to feature Adrian Smith as a guitarist. “Killers” sounds more like a signature Iron Maiden album than the debut. The production is way better, and the guitars generally have a cleaner tone. The album is filled to the brim with great songs. The title track begins with a great bass intro and contains some great galloping guitar riffs. “Genghis Khan” might just be my favorite Iron Maiden instrumental, as well. This is an album that just doesn’t get old, even after 30 years. It rests as my second favorite Maiden album because of its strong songs and the unique blend of the earlier Iron Maiden style and the style they became known for later. The album cover is also one of my favorite Iron Maiden album covers.
And the #1 album is...
1. “Somewhere in Time” (1986)
“Somewhere in Time” just has to be the greatest Iron Maiden album of all time. This is metal perfection right here. The album shows a mature band in their prime creating an album with a unique atmosphere. The keyboards, while not immediately noticeable, are used perfectly to create a spacy atmosphere within the songs. They’re not really prominent like in the album that came afterwards, but they give “Somewhere in Time” great depth and mood. The guitars are absolutely flawless. On the surface, they seem like standard Maiden guitars. But they actually play up the mood of the whole album. Just listen to the intro of “Caught Somewhere in Time”, it’s surreal. I also believe that “Somewhere in Time” features the best vocal performance from the superb Bruce Dickinson. He sounds absolutely excellent here. “Sea of Madness” is my all time favorite Iron Maiden songs. It goes from one of their most heavy songs to sounding very relaxed at times. All in all, “Somewhere in Time” is a flawless album. It is my favorite from the band; though I see why others might choose differently.
So there you have it! These are my five favorite Iron Maiden albums. I’m going to take time now to say that the honorable mentions were “Peace of mind” and “Brave New World”. They would’ve been numbers 6 and 7 respectively. I hope that this was an interesting read for those of you familiar with Iron Maiden and helpful for those who aren’t. I’m going to review an Iron Maiden album soon, so if there’s one you want to hear my full opinion on please let me know. Thanks for reading, and keep it metal!
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