“The great thing is that there's clearly a huge audience out there waiting to hear what we do right now" Adrian Smith
Iron Maiden – masters at live
Prodigious in the amount of music they have produced as well as the enormous number of live performances they have given Iron Maiden has had a huge impact on the course of the genre of music most often called heavy metal. International superstardom has been granted this most successful of heavy metal bands via the Ivor Novello Award for international achievement in 2002, inclusion in the Californian Hollywood RockWalk in 2005 and the BBC Greatest Metal Band Of All Time designation in 2009.
The group Iron Maiden originated in the Leyton area of London, England through the efforts of songwriter and bass player Steve Harris in 1975. Harris says the name came to him after watching the movie, The Man in the Iron Mask. The lineup of the band has undergone numerous changes in the course of time due to personality friction, drug abuse, musical differences and pursuits of personal careers but the high quality of the literary inspired lyrics and drive of the Maiden have persisted in winning new fans through each transition.
Iron Maiden – Just a group of British boys
Considered one of the pioneers of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) movement in the UK the band released their first album, Iron Maiden, in 1980 which went to #4 on the UK Albums charts within 7 days of being released. The volume, speed and direct lyrics distinguished NWOBHM from punk and post-punk through the 80’s and band delivered along these lines when glam metal became more marketable. Standing with Motorhead as the only other band to stick to the traditional HM style IM has enjoyed a long and successful career catering to the niche metal market.
Fame began with the 1982 release of The Number of the Beast which went platinum in the U. S., was the band’s first #1 on UK charts and held Top Ten positions in many countries.
Iron Maiden established their pattern of impressive tours with the World Slavery Tour they undertook after the release of Powerslave in 1984. Historically one of the biggest music tours ever the band played to over 3.5 million individuals in 13 months.
From 1982 albums followed annually until 1986. The Somewhere in Time album of 1986 included the bands first use of synthesized guitars and bass. In 1988 Iron Maiden released Seventh Son of a Seventh Son as their experimentation with a concept album. The album became their second album to be ranked #1 in the UK.
The decade between 1989 and 1999 was tumultuous for the group with many changes in membership and ended with the lowest ratings in the charts of the bands career. After several more successful albums and tours Dickinson split with the band in 1993. Staying vital through live albums and best of compilations the band continued on. The hiring of Blaze Bayley in 1995 did not improve their ratings and he left in February of 1999.
Dickinson and Smith rejoin the group in 1999. Critical acclaim and worldwide commercial success followed with the release of Dance with Death in 2003. Concerts in North and South America, Europe and Japan in 2003-04 were sold out. Another indication of their regained worldwide popularity is that their 2006 release, A Matter of Life and Death, went platinum in India as well as rating #9 on Billboard 200 and #4 on their homelands charts.
During the 2008 Somewhere Back in Time tour a full length documentary was filmed titled Iron Maiden: Flight 666, was released to select theaters on April 21, 2009 and received great reviews.
Iron Maiden recently announced they are scheduled to tour during the summer of 2010. Material is written and production will begin on next album which is expected to be released in 2011.
Did you know that...
- ...the band performed live for three years before recording anything.
- ...virtually every rock and metal band lists Iron Maiden as one of their influences.
- ...in the 1980 the band was viewed as Satanic and was banned from performing in Chile.