2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars
No prayer for no prayer?, 26 Nov. 2003
Post Seventh Son Maiden released this back to basics effort. While this effectively pre-empted the genre move that would follow away from the over produced hair bands of the late 80s and towards a more raw, hard hitting edge, it's about the only forward looking aspect of this dissapointing release. Unfortunately, one of the creative forces within the band, Adrian Smith, decided to split at this point after being given an ultimatum by band founder and head honcho Steve Harris. His replacement was Janick Gers, a mate of Bruce, who to be honest at this stage wasn't really up to scratch, though he would improve on later albums. The album isn't half as bad as most people would have you believe (it's certainly not the bands worst by a long chalk IMO) but the overall feeling is rushed and unfinished. Semi-epics such as the title track and Mother Russia feel particularly under developed, and are brimming with potential. Bruce Dickinson was clearly on autopilot, turning in lazy cliches such as Tailgunner (Diet Aces High), Holy Smoke and the infamous Bring Your Daughter. Dave Murray weighs in with a couple of under-rated gems in Fates Warning and Public Enema, but generally it's not enough and leaves you with the feeling that Maiden were a few good songs short of a decent album when they went in to the studio to record.