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5 Favorite Iron Maiden Albums by the Heavy Review

Updated on February 9, 2012
The "Flight of Icarus" single cover.
The "Flight of Icarus" single cover. | Source

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.

The album cover for "Seventh Son of a Seventh Son".
The album cover for "Seventh Son of a Seventh Son". | Source

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?”.

The album cover from their debut, "Iron Maiden".
The album cover from their debut, "Iron Maiden". | Source

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.

The album cover from "Powerslave".
The album cover from "Powerslave". | Source

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.

The artwork for "Killers".
The artwork for "Killers". | Source

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.

The cover of "Somewhere in Time".
The cover of "Somewhere in Time". | Source

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!

(Be sure to leave a comment and vote in the poll!)

What is your favorite of Iron Maiden's releases from the 80s?

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    • CELEBSFAN78 profile image

      Ara Vahanian 7 months ago from LOS ANGELES

      I like this list of your favorite Iron Maiden albums. However, my top 5 list would go something like this:

      5. Fear of the Dark

      4. Piece of Mind

      3. Seventh Son of a Seventh Son

      2. Powerslave

      1. Somewhere in Time (we both agree that this is Iron Maiden's finest work).

      Keep writing about heavy metal and I will do the same. You have just earned yourself a follower on Hubpages. I enjoy reading about heavy metal album reviews!

    • profile image

      Pavel 2 years ago

      I've been wondering what the explanation is for why Eddie stopped having the skull cap ?, it just kind of disappeared. Anyone know the story, or if there is even one ?

    • TheHeavyReview profile image

      TheHeavyReview 5 years ago

      Thanks for commenting, Mercyful! "Somewhere in Time" really is underrated compared to albums like "Number of the Beast". I agree with you about the filler in that album, and I too don't understand why it is constantly referred to as their best album. "Seventh Son..." is very good as well.

    • profile image

      Mercyful 5 years ago

      I've always felt that Caught Somewhere in Time was one of their most underrated albums of all time. I alternate between Powerslave and that depending on my mood as far as what my "favorite" Maiden album is, but I think they are pretty much tied. I've also never been able to understand why Number of the Beast is constantly put up as the number one or number two on best of lists. Number has some of their landmark songs, but it has so much filler holding it down.

      Seventh is probably also my third favorite.

    • TheHeavyReview profile image

      TheHeavyReview 5 years ago

      Thanks for the comment, FreedomMetal! I love "Piece of Mind" as well! It's a brilliant album!

    • FreedomMetal profile image

      FreedomMetal 5 years ago from Somewhere In Time

      Nice hub - for me, Piece Of Mind is my favorite 80's Iron Maiden album, and the first one I bought!

    • TheHeavyReview profile image

      TheHeavyReview 6 years ago

      Thanks for the comment! Their debut is definitely underrated. I agree that "Number of the Beast" has a lot of filler, it might even be my least favorite of their stuff from the 80s. Up the irons!

    • Shinkicker profile image

      Shinkicker 6 years ago from Scotland

      5 Favorite Iron Maiden Albums by the Heavy Review

      Everyone a classic. I voted for their debut album. I still love it. Glad you omitted the obvious 'Number of the Beast'. Some brilliant songs on it but let down by the weaker ones like 'Invaders', 'Gangland' and '22 Acacia Avenue'

      Up the Irons!!!!

    • TheHeavyReview profile image

      TheHeavyReview 6 years ago

      Thanks for the comment, poetvix! I've never seen them live, but I really would like to one day! I've always enjoyed rating albums by bands, but it sometimes gets hard when you find a band that's really consistent (like Iron Maiden). Have fun listening!

    • poetvix profile image

      poetvix 6 years ago from Gone from Texas but still in the south. Surrounded by God's country.

      Maiden rules! It was the first metal concert I ever went to. Having seen countless since, it remains my favorite. They put on a show like no other! I love this as I have never really considered rating their albums. I think I may be jamming on them all night now.

    • TheHeavyReview profile image

      TheHeavyReview 6 years ago

      Thanks for the comment, The Finance Hub! I'm glad I've peaked your interest. They're a great band!

    • TheHeavyReview profile image

      TheHeavyReview 6 years ago

      Hi Kosmo! Thanks for the comment! All of their work is great, Iron Maiden are a very consistent band!

    • Kosmo profile image

      Kelley 6 years ago from California

      I like Iron Maiden - they have lots of class - though I don't know enough about them to pick a top album. Hey! Later!

    • TheHeavyReview profile image

      TheHeavyReview 6 years ago

      Thanks for reading and commenting! I think "Somewhere In Time" is pretty underrated, you don't see it at the top on these kinds of lists. "Piece of Mind" has some BRILLIANT stuff on it... "Where Eagles Dare" and "To Tame a Land" are among the best Iron Maiden have ever done. All their stuff is enjoyable, though. \m/

    • Michael J Rapp profile image

      Michael J Rapp 6 years ago from United States

      Wow, all awesome. Surprised to see Somewhere in Time #1, but like you say you can't go wrong. Piece of Mind got my vote for #1. Every song on that thing is a classic. Then I'd have to go with Killers, and then it's a toss up between Powerslave and Seventh Son.

      Powerslave was my first Maiden album too . . . long, long ago.

      Great hub!

    • TheHeavyReview profile image

      TheHeavyReview 6 years ago

      Thank you for your comment! When I first got into heavier music, I liked Iron Maiden casually. The song "Powerslave" really got me hooked on them, as well as the "Killers" album. I've never seen them live, but I've watched videos online. They look like an amazing live act! Cool pic, BTW!

      Keep it metal \m/

    • InTuneWithCooking profile image

      InTuneWithCooking 6 years ago from Australia

      Great hub! I have loved Iron Maiden ever since hearing "Live After Death" on vinyl in the 80's when it came out. I finally got to see them last year at Australia's Soundwave Festival, and they did not disappoint one bit! (my profile pic, that's me at the show)

      Thanks for sharing \m/

    • TheHeavyReview profile image

      TheHeavyReview 6 years ago

      "Powerslave" is a masterpiece, for sure! I've always wanted to collect vinyl. I love Maiden's artwork, it's always very detailed which I love. I just can't get over that atmosphere on "Somewhere in Time". "Powerslave" was my first favorite Iron Maiden album when I was getting into them.

    • FatFreddysCat profile image

      Keith Abt 6 years ago from The Garden State

      Can't really go wrong with any of Maiden's 80s output, but I voted POWERSLAVE. Still have my vinyl LP of that one.