on 2 February 2007
It doesnt surprise me that this sits (at the time of writing) at 17 in Amazons order when selected via Bestselling. This album always seemed to fall somewhere short in a lot of peoples opinion. Not as punky as "Iron Maiden" not as polished as "Number of the beast" it seems to sit awkwardly between the two releases either side. But I love it. It has some of the best Maiden tracks ever released, the kick ass Purgatory, Drifters and Wrathchild, the beautiful (yes beautiful) Prodigal Son, the foot tapping Twilight Zone. All great tracks supported by some solid fillers (although 2 instrumentals is perhaps a tad much) but the crowning glory has to be the unbelievable title track. Killers the song is, in my view, the best track Maiden ever wrote. All these years on and my neck hairs still stand up the second that cymbol and bass line start up. The album is worth the cost for the pure headbanging pleasure derived from that song (trust me my head damn near came off when they played Killers live the first time I saw them). But you dont just get one for your money you get 6 or 7 tracks of Maidens best stuff, not enough to warrant 5 stars I hear you cry-it is an album of 11 tracks after all. But you see the other tracks are still very good and how many Maiden albums have classics from start to finish? Go and listen to Number of the beast again and tell me you think all tracks match up to the singles or Hallowed be thy name. No this album is a great one, perhaps not their best, but definitely better than 17 on the Amazon ranks.
on 23 February 2005
I am a fan of other New Wave Of British Heavy Metal bands and kept this album and "Iron Maiden" kept on coming up as highly rated NWOBHM albums, so I decided to give them a try.
Prior to the perchasing of this album I was only a casual listener of Iron Maiden. I knew most of the "classic" songs ("Run To The Hills", "Bring Your Daughter...") but had not heard anything from the Di'anno era. I though I was taking a gamble, but it turns out that I made a good investment!
This album sounds very similar to their debut, but for me it just edges ahead with some superb tracks. Di'anno (singer) really makes his presence felt on this album with a powerful and very versetile voice which works extremely well with the subjects of many of the songs. He still retains the "punky" East-end accent from the first album, but manages to reach some high notes ("Twilight Zone")
The rest of the band also perform well on "Killers", which as I understand was recorded almost as a live album (being that the tracks were layed down in one take as though being performed live). New guitarist, Adrian Smith, seems to be able to work even better with Dave Murry than Dennis Stratton and the two play some great harmonic duets (although not as sublime as on Metallica's "Master Of Puppets") and superb solos (this can also be seemn in the video's available on the enhanced CD) such as in the opening instrumental "The Ides Of March". Steve Harris, on bass, is still the power house behind the beast that is Iron Maiden and, as on the first record, he is the main songwriter and lyicist.
Arguments as to who was/is the best Maiden vocalist aside, this is still a brilliant album and it is good to see that the Di'anno era isn't totally overlooked in Iron Maiden's live shows.
Highlighted songs are: "Wrathchild", "Killers" and "Twilight Zone"
Also recomended by myself: Iron Maiden - "Iron Maiden", Diamond Head - "Lightning To The Nations (White Album)" and Various - "New Wave Of British Heavy Metal '79 Revisited" (its out of print now, but if you see one get it!)
on 4 April 2007
Quite simply their best album. A great combination of heavy metal aggresion, melody and strong songs that they have never managed to achieve again.
As for all this reference to a "punk" influence; this is total nonsense. I can remember when this and the previous album came out and neither I nor any of my school friends would have anything to do with the punks of the late seventies. This is a total 1990's distortion of musical history that the values of NWOBHM had anything to do with the "it's not fair, I don't care" punks of that decade.
on 13 October 2002
A great rock album. Iron Maiden were still a couple of albums away from becoming the more familiar formulaic metal band that they became in the later 80s. The album seems to be packed full of more instrumental songs than any of their others, and so Paul DiAnno's singing is far less intrusive than Bruce Dickinson's - yet when he does sing, it's punchy and to the point. The other members of the band follow suit.
There's a definite feel to this album, it seems rawer, much punkier than their later offerings, and I think that this helps it stand up better. Number of the Beast was a definate classic; but Maiden tainted it by recording a bunch of very similar-sounding albums for the next few years. Not so Killers.
It's difficult to review an album that meant a lot to you personally - but I genuinely think that this is a classic album - if you want to understand Iron Maiden, buy the first three albums - "Iron Maiden", "Killers", and "Number of the Beast". You don't need to know anything more.
on 21 February 2013
I just had to give this album 5 stars as it still remains one of the best metal albums to come out of the early NWOBHM era,following on fast,and i mean fast,from Maidens classic first album. When this first came out I could never understand why it was not that well received in the metal press,i seem to remember Sounds only giving it 3 stars! Well this is faster,heavier and more kick ass than that first album. Maiden dont fail to disappoint here,with all the band members delivering the goods - superb lead guitars,what a rhythm section(one of the best ever in the history of metal) and Pauls vocals scare the pants off you. A real shame this was to be Pauls last album with the band,kinda makes you wonder what would have come next! Full of classic Maiden style tracks,and a great start to the album with the powerful Wrathchild,followed by the speedy Murders In The Rue Morgue...the list go on...whilst i remember i also have to mention the Killers track...one of my all time Maiden favourites,and oh those vocals! Also please dont forget that this was Adrian Smiths debut with the band,and he fulfills his role admirably,proving to be a worthwhile addition to Maidens fast/slow/fast style and heavier sound.
This cd is well presented and comes with a colourful and compact inner - you get some rare photos of all members of the band(and crew!) a long with lyrics to each song,and not forgetting the Special Multimedia Section that include 2 live tracks from Maidens famous gig at the Rainbow.All in all well worth the price and also a big thanks to Amazon for getting this to me so quickly.
on 17 June 2010
More of the same from these hip young upstarts. Hot on the heels of their searing debut, the Maiden boys are creating quite a stir in the new wave punk scene. Just wrap your ears around the title track - it's insane!
I jest, however a listen to this is like a trip back to the '80s (if you're too young, it wasn't as bad as everyone who lived through it says - it was a lot of fun and there was some great music. No, honest) and what a trip it is. In tone it is similar to their debut and is all the better for it, but the tracks are more thoughful and there's evidence of more emphasis on composition this time.
'The Ides of March' opens it well, an instrumental that doesn't overwhelm but sets the scene well for the overly groovy and completely un-Maideny 'Wrathchild'. A great slice of early Maiden that is unsurpassed. 'Murders in the Rue Morgue' follows as something of a minor classic, never played too many times anymore but such a catchy song and one of the first views into the future of the band, as 'Phantom...' was on the previous album. 'Another Life', Genghis Khan' and 'Innocent Exile' are all very good, mid-paced rockers but fall slightly short of classic status. Then 'Killers' kicks in. It is still a live favourite but Paul's voice is more suited to it than Bruce's. Say no more - stone cold classic. 'Prodigal Son' is a personal favourite as it is the least Iron Maiden sounding song ever. It is a beautiful ballad that only now are we hearing more of in their repertoire (Journeyman, etc). 'Purgatory' is much the same as the middle of the album - good, but no cigar. Then 'Twilight Zone', which isn't on my original vinyl, plays as a rather ghostly presence and it just about fits in with the rest of the album. 'Drifter' finishes it off nicely.
Despite a lot of the tracks being kinda filler, Killers is still a classic. It has many tracks still played live today and the cover art is still awesome and one of the all time great covers ever!!
Part of the flawless first 7 Maiden albums.
If you don't have it - why not? I am bursting with envy.
on 17 May 2008
The official line on Killers is that it is a 'difficult' second album and, indeed, something of a blip in the career of Iron Maiden. This was certainly the view of the UK music press early in 1981 when the album was first released and it remains a kind of received wisdom to this day. Well, the received wisdom is wrong. Killers is a fantastic record for a number of reasons and I'll go as far as saying that it is actually my favourite Iron Maiden album. Nearly 30 years on I feel that the second Iron Maiden album is due a major re-evaluation. Here goes:
Killers is an important rock record and something of a game changer for the entire metal scene. It was the first Iron Maiden album to sell globally in any significant quantity. It made the top 20 just about everywhere and it put Maiden into the Billboard top 100 for the very first time. So Killers was a success- we've established that-it is also the right kind of success. The record is very, very hard. You could never describe Killers as a 'sell out.' If anything they've toughened up their sound.
Killers was the first Iron Maiden album to really gel on record. This might be down to the bands frantic touring schedule at this time; this is probably why the band sound so tight and focussed. The record also marks Martin Birch's production debut (what an improvement!), as well as Adrian Smith's debut as second guitarist: he had been in the band only a matter of weeks and yet his playing seems so assured, it is like he had always been there. The chemistry between Smith and Dave Murray is palpable, I must also say something about Clive Burr. What a drummer! And has he ever sounded better than on here? Listen to him on 'Purgatory,' Respect is due! Killers was also Paul Dianno's final Maiden record. Paul is remembered (and sometimes dismissed) as a sort of punk singer but his vocals on Killers are powerful and operatic. Listen to how he holds the note towards the end of 'Drifter' (around the 4.07-4.17 mark). Yeah, Paul rocks.
Granted, the album lacks a 'Phantom of the Opera' or a 'Remember Tomorrow' but it is- undoubtedly-an album with a soul. The cover art is cracking too. Play loud!
on 21 September 2000
This second album killers, was at the time before Iron Maiden canged dramatically, and stayed with a certain style. The album opens with a phenominal instrumental, with a brilliant riff that will get you humming. It is followed by "Wrathchild" with one of Maidens best known and most loved tunes. Each song has a catchy opening, great (and mainly loud) melodies, and makes you want to hear it again and again. The speedy solo's full of energy and skill, and stick in your memory like glue! This album along with their others of the first twelve classic, is remastered, with beter quality, song videos and full lyrics included. Add this to your collection, NOW!
on 26 October 2010
This is without doubt Iron Maiden's best album. If you only ever buy one of their studio albums, make sure its this one. Killers is lean, mean and taut, a pounding powerhouse of 80's Metal. Its far far better than Number of the Beast, the album that alot of Maiden fans witter on about being their best, and Paul D's vocals suit the material perfectly. Murders in the rue morge is simply one of the best rock songs ever written by anyone, and the opening tracks Ides of March/Wrathchild still to this day, make the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end. A stone cold classic.
on 31 May 2016
Exit Dennis Stratton, Enter Adrian Smith, the Guitar God paired with Dave Murray and came to form the twin axe assault that would characterise Maiden's output in the 80s and Beyond, Killers takes the Punk influences of the self titled album and amplifies it tenfold, but is it better than the superlative debut? Let's see
Track 1: The Ides of March - Not much of an instrumental but a lead up to Wrathchild, regardless the track of less than 2 minutes builds up the following ones with gusto, Burr's drumming is excellent here and the riffs climb perfectly, a great opener
Track 2: Wrathchild - A Classic, showcasing Dianno's vast Improvement from the first outing with some incredibly tight bass and guitar riffage, however the vocals definitely take centre stage here, Dianno's screams and talents with falsetto create an unforgettable mid section, that only the Rock in Rio performance has ever came close too
Track 3: Murders in the Rue Morgue - Slow intro, fast verse, punchy chorus, a Maiden Classic that yet again showcases the Late Line-Ups strengths together in one package, I find there isn't much to say, but what's already been said, a song that deserves a place in more setlists than it ever got
Track 4: Another Life - Strange? Yes, it's no Strange World though, a frantically fast riff introduces Dianno's signature growl and carries the song with a Punk Edge for the whole runtime
Track 5: Genghis Khan - Arguably Maiden's best instrumental, the real star here is Burr, drums that clash and smash their way through a seminal song that truly encaptures the tale it's telling through 3 minutes of riffs and beats
Track 6: Innocent Exile - Like Strange World, an incredibly underrated Maiden track that permits one of Dianno's best performances with his time at Maiden, a powerful vocal passage throughout, with a bridge that couldn't be catchier if it tried, Maiden at their best
Track 7: Killers - An intro for the ages, one that hooks you from the moment the needle drops, Dianno's key changes frantically keep the head banging drum riffs alive and well through the finest 5 minutes of raw punk magic maiden commited to tape
Track 8: Prodigal Son - Well, this is weird, Certainly different, a more relaxing ballad amongst the chaos of Killers, with Dianno's old school baritone rearing it's head once again, some tight riffs from Murray and Smith cement their chemistry In a admittedly weird but definitely worthy Maiden track
Track 9: Purgatory - Murray and Smith scorch the tape deck with some absolutely mesmerising riffs while Burr compliments them with some impressive symbol work, meanwhile Harris and Dianno follow on with some pounding bass playing and vibrato filled into falsetto that any vocalist can aspire too, best track, no question about it
Track 10: Twilight Zone - Short and Sweet, a song typical of the album it originates from, regardless it has a chorus that builds with confidence and pays off in spectacular fashion with a typical punk shriek that characterises Dianno
Track 11: Drifter - One of Maiden's least famous closing tracks, for a band known for their closing tracks, typical of a lot of Maiden's first 2 album's output, it is deserved of much more recognition than it receives, and serves as unrestrained closer to one hell of an album
Killers proved that Maiden weren't a one trick pony, Killer, after Killer cements.. Killers? As one of the bands most consistent releases and one of the most overlooked Punk, and Metal Albums of not the just the 80s but History, lost in the curse of the 'pre-number of the beast' era Maiden
But with Dianno shortly exiting after a long and tiring world tour, could Maiden reinvent themselves?