Rating:
7.2
Iron Maiden - A Matter Of Life And Death
28 August 2006


Disc I
01. Different World
02. These Colours Don't Run
03. Brighter Than A Thousand Suns
04. The Pilgrim
05. The Longest Day
06. Out Of The Shadows
07. The Reincarnation Of Benjamin Breeg
08. For The Greater Good Of God
09. Lord Of Light
10. The Legacy
11. Hallowed Be Thy Name [Radio 1 'Legends' Session] [iTunes bonus]

Disc II [Special Edition DVD]
+ The Making Of A Matter Of Life And Death
+ The Reincarnation Of Benjamin Breeg [video]
+ The Band Recording "Different World"


A Matter Of Life And Death is an album concerning warfare, religion, and the causal connections between the two. Accordingly, Maiden entered the stage to the sound of war-movie music, in front of a backdrop which initially shows the bombed-out ruins of what might be Strasbourg 1977 or, given the band's East End origins, Stratford.

Such gaucherie is only to be expected from a band whose passports all say 50 or nearly that, but whose style seems to be grounded forever in 1980's Heavy Metal. With verses like "Far away from the land of our birth/We fly a flag in some foreign earth/We sailed away like our fathers before/These colours don't run, from a cold bloody war", A Matter Of Life And Death is clearly an album with its heart in the right place, but it is also the work of a band that simply loves what it is doing and does not seem to be interested in venturing away from its styles. Tough enjoyable, they have now become a bit predictable.

The anthem choruses are there, the epic songs are there, the lead guitar duals are there, the three-guitar onslaught is there as well, but these things have been heard before. Yet Iron Maiden knows how to go around developing good melodies along good power-chords. The Reincarnation Of Benjamin Breeg, and Different World are two good examples here, showing the band firing on all cylinders.

These Colours Don't run also shows how articulate Bruce Dickenson can be in his observation of war and the mechanisms behind it. He does put a human touch in this song which is all about a soldier in a war zone. However, for sheer intensity, the best songs can be traced to the two longest songs, namely For The Greater Good Of God and The Legacy. Again, both songs throw so much light on propaganda onto war and its undesirable after-effects. When it comes to creativity, A Matter Of Life And Death may not be as effective as Powerslave or Somewhere In Time, but it still has enough good songs to keep the band's avid fans happy, as well as appealing to newcomers.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 5
Production: 8


Band profile: Iron Maiden
Album: A Matter Of Life And Death


 


written by Lupas | 06.02.2007


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Staff review by
Jeff

Rating:
8.4
It's never easy to write the review of the new album of the legendary Iron Maiden. The band is so big and famous that you'll always get comments from the nostalgic people that will say that it was better before (a point that is not especially wrong on a side) and comment from some others ones who cannot understand that a band can change a bit its musical orientation and will always request hits a la "Fear Of The Dark". Unfortunately for them, "A Matter Of Life And Death", 14th release is of the combo, is different… Really dark with a lot of progressive elements, I think that the ones who want some new "The Number Of The Beast" will be disappointed but all the ones who (like me) believe that "Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son" is the best album of the band, will like the new release…

Read more ››
published 28.08.2006 | Comments (88)



Comments

‹‹ Back to the Reviews
Comments: 31  
Users visited: 87  
Search this topic:  


Marcel Hubregtse - 06.02.2007 at 11:44  
Finally a good review on THE MOST overrated album of 2006. Can't argue with ANY of the marks you gave. Spot-on.
Lupas - 06.02.2007 at 13:17  
Well iron maiden are iron maiden and i gave them 5 for originality cause they have no intention to try something different from their style. As i wrote , they sticked with 80's style. And this style gave them all the sucess they want till now .


BTW , Marcel thanks for your comment on my first ever review. Hope to do some more
matthioso - 06.02.2007 at 19:19  
i'm not really a big iron maiden fan, but this cd is good. It creates a wierd atmosphere and I like that.
LethargyMan - 14.02.2007 at 01:06  
This album was "very alright." I agree with some reviews that said that the songs are long for the sake of being long. But there were many redeemable aspects to this album that lupas pointed out.
Doc Godin - 14.02.2007 at 03:57  
this album really how do I say...ruined Maiden for me, ruined might be a little too harsh for the point im trying to make, I'll always enjoy the classics like number of the beast and piece of mind, but ever since I bought this album I find it really hard to bring myself to buy any more Maiden albums. Overall i found this album quite boring, and not because of lack of originality, but just because I found the music genuinly boring.

Awesome cover though.
TheRealThing - 14.02.2007 at 08:13  
I'm going to agree with my drummer on this one. This album was a huge let down. There was really no hard rockers on the album, which immediatley through me off on the first listen, and way too many progressive elements for band like Iron Maiden. I prefer Dance of Death for sure, and I have high hopes that they will hammer out a solid rock album in the future, if they do indeed make another one.
Baz Anderson - 14.02.2007 at 11:04  
yes, I pretty much agree with the gist of the interview and the comments that follow.
this album was certainly my letdown of the year - I also prefer 'Dance Of Death' even though many people seem to bash that album a bit too much

this album just doesnt keep my attention where it should be.. I dont like the production on it either - it sounds kind of flat to me
Dam3k - 07.05.2007 at 18:11  
Written by Doc Godin on 14.02.2007 at 03:57

this album really how do I say...ruined Maiden for me, ruined might be a little too harsh for the point im trying to make, I'll always enjoy the classics like number of the beast and piece of mind, but ever since I bought this album I find it really hard to bring myself to buy any more Maiden albums. Overall i found this album quite boring, and not because of lack of originality, but just because I found the music genuinly boring.

Awesome cover though.


omfg I thought I was the unique who thinks that!
Lupas - 08.05.2007 at 21:55  
Written by Faithless Martyr on 08.05.2007 at 16:18

to me, one of the best albums they have ever made! maybe the best, man. steve harris says it is! new staff is always good : )



well two persons with different minds
RavenLord - 08.05.2007 at 23:00  
I disagree. For so many people to say Maiden have not evolved and yet to criticise them for not having enough 'rockers' on the album is self-contradictory, in my view. Yes, they've stuck to their roots (a lot), and why shouldn't they? 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it', and AMoLaD has many elements that separate it from the rest of their catalogue, I feel, such as the lengthier intro to 'The Legacy' (quite possibly one of the best intros they've ever done, especially live) and the blood-pumping main riff in 'Lord of Light'. The bass intro to 'The Longest Day' is just ominous, and the entire song builds and builds to a great climax. To me, this is progress, without abandoning their past completely...given the giant tantrum so many fans gave over there not being enough classics in the setlist (in a tour that is sandwiched between two tours of nothing BUT classics), I'm glad they didn't over-experiment.

I'd say Different World sounds a lot like the archetypal opener they've used since Futureal on Virtual XI, but they know what they're good at, and they go ahead and do it. I fully support their decision to have played the full album live, as I think it's one of their best, and I've listened to all of them more times than I can count in the past year or so.

8.9 from me...it's not quite 90%+ Killer, but it's damn close...probably 2nd behind Brave New World since Bruce returned.
Relentless - 09.05.2007 at 03:13  
Iron Maiden go prog! Very disapointed in this release. To be honest though the last Maiden album I really enjoyed was 7th Son. There are no stand out tracks on the album and it all sounds a bit flat.
It sounds like what it is middle aged men making a metal album.
Samuel550 - 15.03.2008 at 21:13  
Please guys, you really want to talk about a band who's completely burnt out they're musical style, look to AC/DC.

With A Matter of Life and Death, Iron Maiden have proven that they are still more relevant in todays modern world of Heavy Metal then bands like Metallica or any other band back from the 80's. And people whining that this album doesn't contain any rockers need to think again; Different Worlds, These Colors Don't Run, Brighter then 1000 Suns, The Longest Day and so forth. If it sounds like Maiden and nothing else, it's good.
Powerslave16 - 11.06.2008 at 06:32  
Written by Guest on 15.03.2008 at 21:13

Please guys, you really want to talk about a band who's completely burnt out they're musical style, look to AC/DC.

With A Matter of Life and Death, Iron Maiden have proven that they are still more relevant in todays modern world of Heavy Metal then bands like Metallica or any other band back from the 80's. And people whining that this album doesn't contain any rockers need to think again; Different Worlds, These Colors Don't Run, Brighter then 1000 Suns, The Longest Day and so forth. If it sounds like Maiden and nothing else, it's good.


I am gonna be this guys friend...:)
Cycho - 01.07.2008 at 14:46  
I really like this album but for sure it's definately not their best.
I heard it 4-5 times but i dont really had this feeling to hear an Iron Maiden album

In fact it's really random ...
Nicko's Nose - 23.10.2008 at 04:28  
Good review.

Its not a bad album at all, but its very far from original... Most of the riffs sound recycled and the same chord progression is repeated in EACH song! They HAVE to stop using this chord progression.
Richard - 24.10.2008 at 20:42  
Written by Nicko's Nose on 23.10.2008 at 04:28

Good review.

Its not a bad album at all, but its very far from original... Most of the riffs sound recycled and the same chord progression is repeated in EACH song! They HAVE to stop using this chord progression.


I think that's part of the Maiden winning formula... As others have said, they're damned if they do the same thing, and damned if they change too much, and seemingly even damned if they do both! I think this is a damn fine album.
Nicko's Nose - 25.10.2008 at 03:28  
Written by Richard on 24.10.2008 at 20:42

Written by Nicko's Nose on 23.10.2008 at 04:28

Good review.

Its not a bad album at all, but its very far from original... Most of the riffs sound recycled and the same chord progression is repeated in EACH song! They HAVE to stop using this chord progression.


I think that's part of the Maiden winning formula... As others have said, they're damned if they do the same thing, and damned if they change too much, and seemingly even damned if they do both! I think this is a damn fine album.

Oh, I don't want them to change their sound. I just want them to stop using this chord progression.

I like AMOLAD, but I can't stand unoriginality, so I can't give it more than 7/10.
Deadmeat - 17.05.2009 at 13:18  
I didn't like much this album. it sounds like maiden lost the feeling of powerness they had...
Uirapuru - 24.05.2009 at 11:13  
Very fair review. That's only a good album.. one more of Iron Maiden that doesn't change my life..
GT - 24.05.2009 at 17:48  
Funny that I never read this review. It's quite good and fair. I like the album but as you say it might not be their most original one. By the first listen I really didn't liked it, but after seeing IM performing it live I gave it another chance at it only got better from each listen.
Ellrohir - 25.09.2009 at 14:04  
This still good album...and some songs are great
JÄY - 11.02.2010 at 17:29  
I will pray for those who dont like this album..there is no hope for you
Ellrohir - 11.02.2010 at 17:56  
As the time goes this album became one of my most favorite...and i am not alone with this option - in fact i know also people, who were putting crap on it in the beginning and now they say they love it
Met@1lurg - 11.02.2010 at 19:04  
Yeah, nice one. Especially i like "Brighter than a thousand suns". Pure heavy metal album. Good work by Bruce.
Met@1lurg - 11.02.2010 at 19:08  
Written by Ellrohir on 11.02.2010 at 17:56

As the time goes this album became one of my most favorite...and i am not alone with this option - in fact i know also people, who were putting crap on it in the beginning and now they say they love it

JayX is not right about it. Is he a monk to pray?! ha-ha-ha.
Met@1lurg - 11.02.2010 at 19:11  
Written by JÄY on 11.02.2010 at 17:29

I will pray for those who dont like this album..there is no hope for you

Hey! Hands off! This album is so classic heavy!
JÄY - 11.02.2010 at 19:19  
Written by Met@1lurg on 11.02.2010 at 19:11

Written by JÄY on 11.02.2010 at 17:29

I will pray for those who dont like this album..there is no hope for you

Hey! Hands off! This album is so classic heavy!

i know...thats what i am saying
Ellrohir - 11.02.2010 at 19:46  
I think it isnt really "pure heavy metal" album...in fact it is more likely very "progressive"
Met@1lurg - 11.02.2010 at 19:51  
Written by Ellrohir on 11.02.2010 at 19:46

I think it isnt really "pure heavy metal" album...in fact it is more likely very "progressive"

Ok, can you tell me songs that are progressive?
Ellrohir - 11.02.2010 at 20:04  
start with The Legacy
Angel Of Mercy - 11.05.2010 at 13:56  
For The Greater Good Of God. Pretty much everything apart from the first two tracks.

Advertise on Metal Storm


Login or register to post here.



Similar topics

Forum Topic Similarity Started
Reviews Iron Maiden - A Matter Of Life And Death 11.5 28.08.2006 by Bas
News Iron Maiden - "A Matter Of Life And Death" Audio Samples Online 10.5 20.08.2006 by Spyroid
Albums Iron Maiden - A Matter Of Life And Death 10.5 25.01.2010 by JÄY
News Iron Maiden - Behind The Scenes Of "A Matter Of Life And Death" 10.5 21.08.2006 by Eddie
Events USA, Hartford, CT - Iron Maiden: A Matter Of Life And Death 9 30.08.2011 by Glaucus



Hits total: 4678 | This month: 46