I was an impressionable young child.
Initially my musical taste was all about KISS, but clearly that was due to the look, not their music.
Then I grew up a little and actually liked, OH GOD…DISCO!
Hey it was all the rage, and I was a stupid kid…what do you want?
That didn't last to long as I discovered the coolness that was new wave! The Police were all that mattered to me. I desperately wanted to go see them in concert at the Orange Bowl in Miami but my parents shattered that dream with their cries that I was a wee child and hence must be protected from the obvious evil that a Police concert represented.
Then one day I heard of a little group name of Van Halen…and more importantly, I heard a song called Eruption…I heard the power and glory of an electric guitar at full force, and I never looked back. It was clear that Hard Rock and Metal would become my world now. I got everything I could Van Halen, and then went on to discover the majesty of the late, oh so awesomely great, Randy Rhoads, via the insane warbling of Ozzy Osbourne. I was totally hooked.
Finally one great day in 1983 I was strolling through Dadeland Mall with my partner in crime back then, my crazy cousin HC, and we happened by Specs Records and Tapes.
I was an impressionable young man.
Imagine my surprise to see an album (you remember that before CDs, we used to buy and listen to large, flat vinyl record albums?) that featured the Devil on the cover. This Devil was actually being manipulated as a puppet. The PuppetMaster was a long haired "zombie" looking guy with fire for eyes and a huge, wicked ass grin. In really cool writing (were they called fonts back then?) it said:
The Number Of The Beast
I was an impressionable young man…and DAMN, I was impressed.
If I remember correctly, my cousin bought it right then and there, and we got home and WOW…
This was awesome.
We'd never heard anything like it. We wanted more…and luckily for us, Iron Maiden was a very prolific band!
We soon discovered that that hairy zombie was called Eddie, and he graced every album cover, and still does. We discovered the band had changed personnel over the years, but we had discovered the band right when the getting was good.
The next album was called Piece of Mind, and it was even better than Number of the Beast!
And OH, the videos!
MTV actually had balls back then and played Metal right smack in the daytime! (Of course later Metal was relegated to latenights, then weekends, then NEVER! Fucking MTV…)
Then came my greatest adventure up to that point of my fifteen years of existence on this Cursed Earth…
My first concert
Iron Maiden, with special guest Quiet Riot!
WHAT A FUCKING AMAZING EXPERIENCE!
It was a serious rite of passage for me, and I loved every minute of it.
After that there were many more albums, tapes and even concerts.
Through Iron Maiden I actually learned some stuff. They introduced me to Alexander The Great and Samuel Taylor Coleridge, via the fourteen minute "Rime of the Ancient Mariner", based on his epic poem about, in Bruce Dickinson's own words, "what not to do if a bird shits on you". I still ate it all up, and loved it!
But then came this little band called Metallica, and my musical world was torn asunder.
Add to that key personnel leaving Iron Maiden, and suddenly, I just lost interest.
I thought it was over for good.
Despite his amazing voice, I didn't even get into the former Iron Maiden's vocalist's, Bruce Dickinson, solo albums. Then a former Maiden guitarist, Adrian Smith, joined on him on two of his more recent solo albums, and I liked them a lot!
Then came the big news…
The CLASSIC line up was getting back together!
And now I proudly own the newest offering from the all new, yet comfortably familiar Iron Maiden, Brave New World. See, they're still as educational as ever. I'm sure Aldous Huxley never envisioned their version!
I have to say, even though I was so hyped it for it that a let down seemed inevitable, I fucking love it!
Yeah it gtes a litle derivative, and repititious, but overall, Maiden is still the shit!
Even Eddie is right there on the cover, although in his most sophisticated manner yet!(See above)
So when all is said and done, Up The Irons!