Somewhere In Time
IRON MAIDEN

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IRON MAIDEN - Somewhere In Time cover
4.20 | 146 ratings | 16 reviews
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Album · 1986

Tracklist

1. Caught Somewhere In Time (7:25)
2. Wasted Years (5:07)
3. Sea Of Madness (5:41)
4. Heaven Can Wait (7:21)
5. The Loneliness Of The Long Distance Runner (6:31)
6. Stranger In A Strange Land (5:44)
7. Deja-Vu (4:56)
8. Alexander The Great (8:35)

Total Time 51:24

Line-up/Musicians

- Bruce Dickinson / vocals
- Dave Murray / guitar, guitar synth
- Adrian Smith / guitar, guitar synth, vocals
- Steve Harris / bass guitar, vocals, bass synth
- Nicko McBrain / drums

About this release

29 September 1986
EMI

Reissued in 1995 with a bonus disc with the following tracklist:

1. Reach Out (3:31)
2. Juanita (3:46)
3. Sheriff Of Huddersfield (3:34)
4. That Girl (5:02)

Total Time 15:55

Remastered and reissued in 1998 with the following videos:

1. Wasted Years
2. Stranger In A Strange Land

Thanks to metalbaswee, Stooge, Lynx33, Unitron for the updates

IRON MAIDEN MP3, Free Download/Stream

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Iron Maiden - Somewhere Back In Time - The Best Of 1980-1989Iron Maiden - Somewhere Back In Time - The Best Of 1980-1989
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Import
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Import
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IRON MAIDEN SOMEWHERE IN TIME reviews

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aglasshouse
Guys, I've got a confession to make.

I don't like Iron Maiden.

I know this statement is akin to dousing a puppy in kerosene and overhand lobbing it into a raging bonfire, but it's true. I've tried my very hardest for almost four years now to enjoy them, to see the awe-inspiring craftsmanship everyone proclaims is prevalent on so many of their classic records...but I just can't. Not only do I think both drummers on Iron Maiden, Clive Burr and Nicko McBrain, plod out some of the most boring and repetitive rhythms of all time, but the songwriting of so much of their work may have worked wonders back in 1980, but like a joke it got extremely old extremely fast with each successive release following their self-titled debut. I think the revolutionary label slapped to Iron Maiden is quite reputable, but at the same time the asserted quality to match that is repudiable.

But, and I do mean a HUGE but -- Iron Maiden's 1986 work Somewhere In Time is one of my all-time favorite metal albums. Period. Strange, right? A band I dislike making one of my favorite albums? It's true though -- I think that Somewhere In Time is a precision-made, calculated masterpiece that distances itself so far from the band's discography that it might well be from a separate artist.

Somewhere In Time is a dystopian-based, Blade Runner-inspired record that came two years after 1984's Powerslave, an album that showed a lot of promise and had a few great tracks, but didn't nearly harness the same effect as it's successor. The Powerslave supporting tour ate up a whopping 187 concerts and excreted a whole lot of exhaustion onto the band following it, specifically Dickinson, who thus was not able to produce quality songwriting contributions. Dickinson had written some acoustic songs, in fear that if they didn't step up their game to a different level, that the band would "stagnate and drift away" (see even the band recognizes their sameness to a certain degree). Although these acoustic songs were not featured, this attitude continued into the eventual recording process, causing Somewhere In Time to be the first Iron Maiden album to harness synthesizers. While this might seem like a big no-no, considering that often it's the case that once a band starts leaning on the synths it's akin to them just committing creative suicide, but it's quite the contrary; Somewhere In Time's utilization of synthesizers gives a wondrous air of mysticism to the album, as it acts as a supreme background element to the its futuristic setting. It's also a key component in the massive epics that permeate the album. The title track opener, for instance, is a blazing fireball of a gallop that is one of the most prime examples of a perfect setting of the mood on any album, unheeded by the furious scream of synthesizer bursts. 'Wasted Years' is one of three contributions by guitarist Adrian Smith, and is the most lasting relic of this album's legacy. It does have a slightly poppier vibe, which may owe to this fact, but Dickinson's beautiful chorus and the magnificent guitar hook is nothing short of a knockout punch. One more highly recommended track is 'Stranger in a Strange Land', a bass-heavy, groovy romp which acts, in a way, as a better track representative of the theme of being "caught somewhere in time" than, well 'Caught Somewhere In Time'. Perhaps this is because of the lyricism of being in a mysterious world in which the rules are unknown, which I believe the album was trying to tackle. 'Caught' is still the best track, though. Not taking that back.

The band took their biggest step forward with this album, talentwise. McBrain, who I criticized previously for being extremely repetitive and leaning too hard on a a few stagnant drum patterns, is absolutely mindblowing on this release. His constant shifts between the groovy steel heel-click of the slower songs and the fast-paced explosiveness of the faster ones makes for one of his all-time best work. Steve Harris as always is extremely present and upfront, especially for a bassist. The neat thing about him is that, as a part of the percussion section, actually works off of McBrain to create this almost machine-like twang that follows his groove. Twin guitarists Smith and Murray are of course better than ever, offering extremely intricately-woven shredding that did well to pique my interest. Dickinson, although I'll always prefer Di'Anno, is at his zenith on Somewhere In Time, belting out a sort of sophisticated type of melodic yell that few of his peers have been able to accomplish. Absolutely stunning, all of them.

Many critics readily dismiss Somewhere in Time as being "half-baked", or "a hurried coverup of an atrophying creative muscle". These same critics will turn around and praise Seventh Son of a Seventh Son, an album I believe to be leagues below this one, and compliment it for factors they would say that Somewhere in Time wrongfully utilized. I say, pay no attention to them and embrace this one just like you would say Number of the Beast or Powerslave, because it's definitely up there with the best.
Unitron
"Make you an offer you can't refuse, you've only got your soul to lose... Eternally... let yourself go!"

The 80's certainly were the golden age for metal. Heavy metal, thrash metal, and power metal classics were plentiful, as were early masterpieces in the death and doom genres. 1986 in particular was an amazing year, with classics like Master of Puppets, Reign in Blood, Peace Sells, Somewhere in Time, Epicus Doomicus Metallicus, Orgasmatron, Russian Roulette, Rage for Order, and many many more. While I love every one of those albums I listed, there are four of those that are among my all time favorite albums. Perhaps the best one of those is none other than Iron Maiden's masterpiece Somewhere in Time.

Few albums can legitimately claim to have a futuristic atmosphere. Many bands have tried to create this kind of sound, but still retain the qualities of whatever year they were recorded. Somewhere in Time however, manages to have a cyber-punk futuristic atmosphere while remaining timeless. The guitar tone on this album has never been replicated, not even by the band themselves. It's a bit hard to explain without listening to it yourself, but it has this spacey effect partly caused by the guitar synths used. Not to worry though, the synth is purely used for atmosphere here and always blends perfectly with the main instruments.

The riffs maintain Maiden's usual gallop, but on this album those galloping guitar runs place you in the world the band has created. You're right there, running the long-distances in this mysterious future world. Right at the beginning you are caught somewhere in time, and when is up to the listener. The album is full of memorable hooks, and perhaps most notable is the iconic main riff to the classic "Wasted Years". Steve Harris's bass is probably at it's most prevalent on this album, often playing very audible licks different from the guitar. There's even a short solo bass intro to the swing of "Stranger in a Strange Land". The drums are ever powerful as well, enhancing the grandiose sound that the album sets up.

Bruce Dickinson's vocal melodies and lyrics are at their very best here, just listen to any of the eight songs on the album for proof. "Wasted Years", "The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner", "Deja-Vu", and the title track especially all feature beautiful and memorable vocal lines that you'll be singing along to for days. "Heaven Can Wait" is also spectacular with it's synchronized chants during the bridge. The lyrics are perfectly written, as they can all fit into the mood and atmosphere of the album while being incredibly powerful on their own as well. "Wasted Years" and "Deja-Vu" are probably the two main highlights for me, even making me tear up when I listen to them.

The album art deserves a mention as well, being filled with tons of little details and references. Featured are many references to past Iron Maiden songs and albums, such as "Ancient Mariner Sea Food Restaurant" and "Aces High Bar". There are also little tributes to Led Zeppelin, Doctor Who, and of course Blade Runner hidden around the art. There are many more things to be found, and because of that, this is an album made for vinyl.

While sadly often overshadowed by the albums that bookend it, Somewhere in Time is Iron Maiden's magnum opus. The three albums that preceded it are also masterpieces and among my all-time favorites, but Somewhere in Time has the edge over them all as the best one. It nails everything perfectly, and is simply one of the greatest pieces of music ever recorded. If you love classic epic heavy metal and have not heard this album, do yourself a favor and listen to this absolute masterpiece of music. Hope you found this review helpful, feel free to comment!
Vim Fuego
Iron Maiden were the biggest metal band in the world in 1986. Their reputation had been forged through tireless touring and prolific, high quality, very metal albums. Having produced five studio albums in five years, and backing them all up with extensive world tours featuring massive live productions must have become tiring. While the band released metal’s greatest double live album ‘Live After Death’ in 1985, no studio album was forthcoming that year. Was there a problem? Was Maiden tiring? What was happening?

When ‘Somewhere In Time’ was finally released in September 1986, shock horror, Iron Maiden had done something different!

The cover art offered a clue. Eddie had sprouted wires, a bionic eye and a laser, and was standing as a gunslinger in a Blade Runner/Terminator sci-fi cityscape. While not a concept album, like 1988’s ‘Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son’, a future shock/passage of time theme connects much of the album. The biggest change was the addition of synth bass and guitars, much to the consternation of long-time fans of the band. The synth sounds of the guitars and bass added to the cyborg feel, combining both the organic and the mechanical. Steve Harris’ bass doesn’t have quite the same gallop as on previous albums, but the minor change goes along with the band trying to do something a little different. And just because the guitars sounded a bit different didn’t mean Adrian Smith and Dave Murray had forgotten how to play them.

While the singles “Wasted Years” and “Stranger In A Strange Land” were highly successful, neither were instant classics like “Number Of The Beast” or “Run To The Hills”, but as a whole, this album is far more consistent than the previous three. There are no fillers, like “Back In The Village” or “Invaders”. “Two Minutes To Midnight”, from the ‘Powerslave’ album would have fitted perfectly onto ‘Somewhere In Time’, perhaps hinting toward the direction of this album.

There are some great moments of pure Maiden on this album. Bruce Dickinson’s voice is allowed to really soar at times, like on “Sea Of Madness” and “The Loneliness Of The Long Distance Runner”. The latter also features a snare/kick drum pattern from Nicko McBrain to simulate the runner’s footsteps. “Wasted Years” is a song about not wasting opportunities, and the brilliant descending scale riff is one of the best the band has ever recorded.

“Alexander The Great” is one of Iron Maiden’s greatest epics. It was impossible to play live until recent years, because it had so many different guitar lines it required three guitarists, and the lines weave in and out of each other. The lyrics are a dramatisation of Alexander The Great’s conquests, and like great classical pieces, like “William Tell Overture” or “Hall Of The Mountain King”, the multi-faceted, layered music also tells the story. Despite Bruce Dickinson having a degree in history, “Alexander The Great” was written by Steve Harris.

Science fiction influenced metal albums are a dime a dozen now, but back when Iron Maiden released ‘Somewhere In Time’, it was innovative and more than a little surprising. Despite criticism levelled at the band back then, and in the years since, ‘Somewhere In Time’ has held up well. Even casual Maiden fans need to hear this album.
siLLy puPPy
After bursting from his grave from wearing himself out from the “Powerslave” tour on the “Live After Death” album, Eddie springs back to life and takes up time travel on IRON MAIDEN's sixth studio album SOMEWHERE IN TIME. Although it seems like it should be a concept album it only has a handful of tracks dedicated to time. This is the first album the band utilized synthesizers in their sound but as a complementary background setting instead of a full-on keyboard effect. This album to me sounds like there is a lot of recycled riffage going on. There are parts here and there that clearly remind you of previous albums, but despite it all MAIDEN deliver yet another satisfying album from beginning to end. Unfortunately this album just sinks a little between the ones surrounding it for me.

Despite being a tad musically inferior, I have to say that the artwork is one of the best album covers in musical history with tons of references to previous songs, albums and themes. Derek Riggs outdid himself on this one with the Blade Runner themed sci-fi extravaganza. I was initially disappointed that this album was not the fully formed concept album that “Rime Of The Ancient Mariner” eluded to moving toward on the previous album. We would have to wait until the next album for that to happen, but this is still a strong album that despite seeming a little bit like IRON MAIDEN on cruise control still has enough melody and metallic fury to satisfy. Yet another essential listening experience for anyone even remotely interested in traditional metal of the 80s.
666sharon666
Having released a string of five quality heavy metal albums between 1980 - 1984, as well as the well regarded live album/video Live After Death in 1985, on their sixth studio album Iron Maiden began to experiment, adding guitar synths to their established sound.

Though singer Bruce Dickinson seems to have been having a creative dry spell at the time, with no writing credits on the album (his submissions for this one were apparently rejected by the band), guitarist Adrian Smith's work really shines with the singles Wasted Years and Stranger in a Strange Land. My personal favourite here though is the opener Caught Somewhere in Time though Alexander the Great deserves a mention too. I have to admit though that Somewhere in Time is one of those albums that took me some time to really appreciate. It's grown on me a lot over the years but I still consider it slightly inferior to the albums released either side of it, which for me constitute two of Iron Maiden's finest releases. The song Heaven Can Wait is one I still struggle a bit with, which some fans may find odd, as it's generally considered one of the most popular from the album. Overall though Somewhere in Time is another excellent Iron Maiden from their classic era.

Attribution: http://metaltube.freeforums.org/iron-maiden-somewhere-in-time-t3617.html
Sinkadotentree
The eighties of course were a great time to be an IRON MAIDEN fan and "Somewhere In Time" is a perfect example of why this was so. Released in 1986 and i'll agree it's not as good as "Powerslave" but it works regardless. What i like about it is how melodic and reflective it is. I can really relate to this one looking back at the first half of the eighties as the band seemed to be doing with "Wasted Years".It's my favourite song on here, very uplifting. The two songs surrounding it "Caught Somewhere" and "Sea Of Madness" are almost as good and i like the heaviness of the latter track. "Heaven Can Wait" is my least favourite, especially the chorus. "The Loneliness Of The Long Distance Runner" is one i can relate to having been one for years. Just getting back into it by the way after a couple of years off. Check out the bass and drums to start "Stranger In A Starnge Land". Nice heavy sound here. Love this one. Lots of snow and ice around here these days. "De Ja Vu" is atmospheric to start but it kicks into an uptempo tune quickly. "Alexander The Great" is the closer and the longest track on here. This one builds quickly as well. Great tune ! Five stars from this fanboy.
Warthur
There's little doubt in my mind that Somewhere In Time isn't quite as good as the preceding Powerslave, but at the same time it's still a very good Maiden album which is somewhat underrated in the band's catalogue. The main sticking point for me is probably Wasted Years, a flirtation with a more commercial style of metal which, whilst it doesn't actually stray into hair metal territory, often seems as though it's threatening to. Beyond that song, however, the band do a decent job of incorporating synthesisers into their sound and present more epic, progressive songwriting of the sort that by this point was what we all expected of them.
Stephen
It's 1986 and Iron Maiden can't deny the fact that the world is consuming a more pop-oriented heavy metal. Without stripping down the core, this is the first time they tried to adapt to the change by introducing the usage of synthesizer. Although ironically Dickinson rejected that idea, I think Maiden successfully moved one step further. "Somewhere In Time" wrapped tight the clever songwriting of Steve Harris and friendlier musical environment, but doesn't sound cheesy and the aggressive twin axe attack is still there.

"Caught Somewhere In Time" was brought to the front as the opener. The power of the song lies on the punchy chorus and those intense guitar duels. "Wasted Years", which was written by Adrian Smith, has the killer and memorable intro that never got out off your head after all these years. Probably their most melodic song and not a single wasteful moment you can find here. "Heaven Can Wait" and "Deja-vu" are another fave of mine. "The Loneliness of The Long Distance Runner" is an underrated gem with a dynamic tempo and blazing guitars, watch Dickinson's playful vocal technique here, perhaps one of his finest moments. The grand closer, "Alexander The Great", started slow then they build up the tempo to create a monstrous heavy metal epic.

Iron Maiden seized another victory with "Somewhere In Time". A very special album that I personally consider their best of all time and I still cheer it to this day.
Time Signature
Not wasted years...

Genre: heavy metal

Interestingly this album has a quite high rating on MMA at the moment of me writing this review. What is interesting about that is that, when it came out, a lot of disliked it because of the use of synths and guitar synths (Judas Priest did the same with "Turbo", which has also received a lot of flak) - and a lot of rock fans of that generation still think it's one of the worst Maiden albums from the first Bruce era. However, to many people of my generation, "Somewhere in Time" is a very defining album.

In my case, it was the first metal album I heard, and the first metal album I owned. My mother even went down to the local record store with me so I could buy it. Knowing what kind of music Maiden made, she asked me if I was sure that I wanted to buy it, I said that I was absolutely certain, because I'd hear the album before, as I'd gone fishing with one of my friends' older brother the weekend before that, and he'd brought a boom box, but forgotten to bring any tapes other than "Somewhere in Time" which was just lying around in his jacket pocket. My life changed on that fishing trip because I heard "Somewhere in Time". Yes, somewhere in time is the album that changed my life. So, it was important for me to buy it. Once I told my mother that I was certain, she encouraged me to follow my tastes in music (even if she liked Bon Jovi and 80s pop music) - fortunately, my parents have always supported me, and they never took any issues with the music I listened to - I first experienced that with Iron Maiden which was my first independent journey into music.

I loved "Somewhere in Time" then. And I still love it today. It's my all time favorite album by my all time favorite artist.

There was just something about the music with its guitar harmonies, the chugging rhythm guitars, the straight but sometimes totally offbeat drumming, and the magnificent vocals that caught me. I'd never heard that sort of music before, but I was completely hooked upon first listen.

The opening track "Caught Somewhere in Time" is very much an epitome of Maiden metal, starting out with an epic sounding intro which is based on a melodic twin guitar pattern before exploding into a fully fledged glory of galloping and harmonic guitar patterns, a powerful chorus and straight solid drumming interrupted by a couple of syncopations now and then. "Wasted Years" is a more melodic affair with a very syncopated drum beat and the catchies chorus in the world, and then there's the easily recognizable guitar intro; this is easily one of my favorite Maiden tracks. "Sea of Madness" starts out with an aggressive riff which creates a nice contrast to "Wasted Years". It is one of the more obscure tracks on this album, but I think it's an amazing rocker and totally on par with many of the band's most loved classics. "Heaven Can Wait" is a sort of anthem because of the soccer-fan oh-oh-oh-oh sing-along choir in the bridge, but it is also a fast and hard-hitting metal song with a sort of uplifting lyrical message. Then there is "The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner", which was the first Maiden track I ever heard (on that fishing trip, we started with side B for whatever reason), and this song is really a cornucopia of all things Maiden - to the extent that Steve Harris once stated in an interview that he thought it was perhaps a bit too over the top; well, it's not over the top for me - it's just right. "Stranger in a Strange Land" is a midtempo melancholic track with an almost bluesy feel to it, while "Deja Vu", one of the more obscure tracks, is a fast paced track with an extremely catchy chorus. "Alexander the Great" is an epic track, and while it is not the best of its kind (there are many epic Maiden track that work much better), it is still a captivating track.

For my money, the best album ever!
Pekka
Two times had Maiden come very close to crafting the masterpiece worth all five full stars, but there was always the track or two to keep it from happening. But then came 1986, a big metal year with Master of Puppets and Reign in Blood coming out and me being born, so Maiden saw that this is the moment to finally do it.

Somewhere in Time is notable for containing three songs solely penned by Adrian Smith, two of which were released as singles, and obviously for introducing guitar synths to the band's sound. While on some metal albums at the time synths may have seemed just a tacky add-on, Maiden managed to incorporate them tastefully, with their help creating a radiant future-like sound. Bruce Dickinson's song material was left off the album, but his vocal performance is perhaps my favourite from all the Maiden albums he's appeared on. Very clear and powerful with no sign of struggling to hit all the notes.

But this is Adrian Smith's album. Both of the singles, Wasted Years and Stranger in a Strange Land I rank among their very finest tracks ever, as I do their guitar solos. Rather light rock songs both of them, Wasted Years features one of the most memorable Maiden riffs ever and the solo in Stranger... I've got no words. And the way they keep driving the track still higher and higher after the solo with Harris' bass work is phenomenal.

I remember this album being very hard to get into when I first got my hands on it, but before long I grew to love each and every track. Songs like Sea of Madness, The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner and Deja Vu have been for no reason forgotten, but these songs that someone could see as filler I find to be of brilliant quality, the band on full force brimming with gorgeous melodies. Ending the album is one of my favourite Maiden album closers ever, despite the somewhat history-lesson-for-kids sort of lyrics and some forced lines an extremely enjoyable epic battle trip with Alexander the Great.

Five stars, finally. An extremely strong album from beginning to end, with a few highlights still peaking through. A must have, definitely.

Members reviews

Losimba
This is definitely my favourite Iron Maiden album and one of my favourite albums in general, and there are exactly eight reasons for it. But it would be boring to list them, because the tracklist can be found above the reviews.

I've tried hard to find an oh so slight weakness, and failed miserably. Well, not miserably, as I don't want to find one, but you get what I mean. Somewhere In Time is a powerful album from the first to the last chord, the perfection of the famous Iron Maiden sound, and manages the near impossible: it is even stronger than its already great predecessor Powerslave. It doesn't matter whether a song is fast or a bit slower, Steve Harris' bass guitar saunters through it, supported by the ever precise drumming of Nicko McBrain. Dave Murray and Adrian Smith perform twin guitars at its best, Wishbone Ash never reached that level. Above all flies Bruce Dickinson's voice, fed by lyrics that really suit him.

As I said, every single one of the eight songs is simply great and worth 5 stars. Though, this is not completely true, because there is one song that is even better and worth 6 stars. Which one? The one where all those wonderful things I mentioned about the musicians are featured strongest: the most galopping bass beat, the twinniest twin guitars and the deepest, possibly darkest lyrics. In short, Stranger In A Strange Land. The song's only weakness (ha, I've found one in the end!) is that it is only 5 minutes and 43 seconds. 10 minutes would do it more justice.

5.17 stars for the whole album. As this site limits ratings to 5 stars, I'll go with those.
floflo79
Iron Maiden made The Number Of The Beast, Piece Of Mind and Powerslave. Three albums who are surely in my top 20 metal albums of all time. So what can they do after ? Two other masterpieces. Somewhere In Time is an album with a more futuristic tone with synths, mysterious guitars harmonies (like in the intro of Caught Somewhere In Time) and also in the lyrics or in the awesome cover art. The music is just excellent with great pieces like Caught Somewhere In Time, Wasted Years, the epic Alexander The Great, the instrumental Déjà Vu or the great Heaven Can Wait. Every song on the album worth the listening. 5/5.
The Truth
It had been such a long time since I'd given this album a listen, years even, but I'm so glad I had the incredible urge to go on an Iron Maiden binge which is something I hadn't done in even longer.

The magic of the band is with me yet again. Somewhere In Time was perhaps the album that struck me the most when I gave all my Maiden records a listen again, it being a bit more energetic and full of a sort of raw power. Dickinson's vocals are top-notch (as always) and tracks like "The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner" are just really great tunes.

I guess that's what Maiden does, they keep a strikingly similar formula through most of their albums and it really works for them. Especially on this album, the band's true epitome is indefinable because of how many solid records they released but if I was held at gunpoint, I'd say this was it.

Simply a record with some great energetic tunes that aren't achieved by any other band.
friso
Iron Maiden - Somewhere in Time (1986)

In a time 'progressive' was a cursed word Iron Maiden changed their direction in exactly that direction. This somewhat strange move for one of the most popular metal band of their times wasn't perceived as a progress by the fans, but in the progressive community it was seen as a pleasant career-move. Might Harris had always intended to extend his melodic and inventive ideas for the band? Perhaps the roots for this new style can be found in the new technology of it's time (synth-bass and synth-guitar). I don't know, but I learned to like this one-of-a-kind album in their discography.

On the Somewhere in Time album the metal-sound got some electronic edge to it and there now was a frequent use of synthesizers, albeit guitars-synths. The vocals of Dickinson are less close to the listener due to the use of reverb effects. The sound of this album is also a bit more abstract and perhaps a bit spacey to some. The drums are still recognizable Maiden style.

The songs. The album opens with the title track and to be honest, it's not my favorite track of the album. I know a lot of people who really like it, but I think it sounds un-interesting and the melodies just don't seem to work. Even some of the guitar-solo's don't work for me, usually a strong part of the Maiden title tracks. A pity. The next track, Wasted years, is a stronger track with a nice guitar theme and a catchy refrain. It's slight electronic sound works really well here. Sea of Madness is a bit more progressive and has a great bridge and refrain. The lyrics are bit dull IMHO.

Heaven Can Wait is the first masterful Maiden track on the album. This epical track about a near-death-experience has many parts put together in an intelligent and fresh way. The many guitarsolo's work well and the atmosphere works pretty well with the lyrics. Great! The Loneliness Of A Long Distance Runner is a song with a lot of instrumental guitar parts that work very well with the up-tempo approach. I used to think of this song as a real treat: the more melodic guitar parts the better. Stranger In A Strange Land is a simple but effective song like Wasted Years. Somehow the simplistic rhythmical approach (one might say kind of eighties-rock like) works very well. It give focus.

Déjà Vu is an up-tempo track with again a lot of melodic guitar parts and a good lyrical theme. This albums keeps getting stronger! Alexander The Great is the big epic of the album. It has all of the epic ingredient Maiden has to offer: many melodic instrumental parts, a story-line, some more development with instrumental parts (this time even in an odd time- signature!) and a good conclusion.

Conclusion. A strange Maiden album with synths and a slight progressive approach. This new slightly progressive sound is established by it's sound, Iron Maiden already had lot's of inventive songwriting and many melodic parts. Somehow I can understand this album is not for every-one and it might not even be appreciated by all fans of the band. I myself like it, though I think side two is better then side one. Four stars. A lot of guts to make experimental metal like this in the mid-eighties!

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