Metal Insider contributor Anthony Maisano is listening to a different metal album that was released on that day every day this year. Today, it’s Iron Maiden’s groundbreaking 1988 album Seventh Son of a Seventh Son.
This is my favorite Iron Maiden album. Even at the time, everyone talked about how terrible it was for Maiden to have keyboards, but I love it. The album takes everything good about Maiden, and adds an extra element of cool, calm atmosphere behind it. It gives the album a mystical presence that fits perfectly with the themes of traditional wizard lore. Seventh Son builds off of everything Somewhere in Time established. The title track has some of the most awesome instrumental work by Maiden, and an anthem-like chorus. “Can I Play With Madness” is a different styled song for Maiden. It’s unique, and it’s really cool. Gotta love that cowbell! “The Evil That Men Do” and “The Clairvoyant” have become Maiden staples as well.
The album certainly is not as heavy as previous Maiden albums. Nor is it as fast, and in your face as previous albums. These reasons can be big turn offs for newcomers, and fans of their previous work alike. This is a new style of Maiden. It can be just as interesting as it is hated, by fans. The key differences in this style are what can make this album one of the best, or worst Maiden albums depending on viewpoints.
Favorite Tracks: “The Clairvoyant,” “Seventh Son of a Seventh Son, “The Evil That Men Do,” “Can I Play With Madness?”
If you’re open to some very key differences in Iron Maiden than the days of old, I think this is one of the best there is. It’s a perfect example of a band adapting to a new style, and progressing, while, at the same time, keeping a lot of what was great about the past. Not many bands adapt as good as Maiden did at this time. The stories and atmosphere are some of Maiden’s best, and the riffs, vocals, and bass work are equally as moving. However, this might not be the best album for someone who wants the face paced riffing in the straightforward sense that the older albums had. It’s amazing, but it’s certainly different.