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on 12 March 2016
I’m writing this review having had a break from Maiden since Fear of the Dark, I saw flight 666 and I realised they are still great so decided to catch up on their more recent albums and started at Brave New World, as it’s where the classic line-up were reunited. I’m not one of those Maiden fans who gives every album a 5 star rating regardless as that’s just not helpful to people who genuinely want to know if the album is any good. Right – onto the review. Brave new world opens with Wicker Man, a fast-paced, kick-ass rock song with a really catchy guitar riff. Some Maiden songs are slow burners but Wicker Man is instantly likeable. It’s a great start to an album. Next comes Ghost of the Navigator. Oh my word! One of my fave three songs on the album. The intro is superb, a slow build-up that gathers pace until it breaks into a killer buzzsaw guitar riff. Ghost has several parts to it, all of which I like and it’s very much in the classic mould of the great storytelling Maiden songs, the story is great and musically it’s superb. Song 3 is Brave New World. Slow intro which unsurprisingly turns into another quality rock track. I love the music of Brave New World but it wasn’t my favourite song on first few listens, mainly because Bruce sings ‘a Brave New World’ what seems like a thousand times. It’s grown on me though and it’s still a great song. Blood Brothers (song 4) is probably the slowest song on the album, a catchy melodic song that has a chorus that you’ll find yourself singing along to ‘We’re blood brothers’– I bet this is a great live song as it’s a perfect singalong song. The Mercenary (song 5) is a shorter song, straight into a fast rock song and again another killer chorus ‘show them no fear, show them no pain’, a kind of standard Maiden track this one which I mean as a compliment, perfectly decent song. Dream of Mirrors (song 6) is over 9 minutes long but is still not long enough, it’s that good! On first listening this was my favourite song, and it still is. It’s just bloody awesome. Really emotive song, a slower song for a lot of it, Bruce’s singing is perfect as the song builds and builds. Another in a long line of the great ‘storytelling’ Maiden songs, the types of Maiden songs I love. When the guitars kick in it’s perfect and the chorus ‘I only dream in black and white’ is just so goddam catchy, it really gets under your skin this song and shows why Maiden are not just another metal band, they are superb musicians – dream of mirrors isn’t just a great Maiden song or a great metal song, it’s just a great song full stop. It’s some 6 minutes in before dream of mirrors speeds up to a more standard Maiden pace and when the chorus is sung at this faster pace it’s even better! The Fallen Angel (song 7) is the shortest track at just 4 minutes long. Heavy intro which leads to yet another catchy as hell chorus ‘could it be it’s the end of our world’ with a fabulous riff, one of the heavier songs on the album and really good song. The Nomad (song 8) – the only song I’m not that crazy about. It’s another 9 minute song but I just don’t like the weird circus-like guitar riff in this song. That said the intro features a few seconds of harmonies which come later as well – I love bits of this song but not the song as a whole. The next two songs are about the best end to an album you can get. Out of the Silent Planet (song 9) is a brilliant song. A melodic intro which gives us something rare for Maiden – harmonies, and boy does that make this song. A great story, the harmonies on Silent Planet are just plain special, this is Maiden showing off, showing how good they are. Silent Planet is pure class, brilliant vocals, catchy as hell guitar riff, and just for good measure a little bit of funk in the instrumental in the middle of the song. If you don’t like Silent Planet then there really is no hope for you. Thin Line Between Love and Hate finishes the album. Another epic at over 8 minutes long. I love Bruce’s vocals on this song, it’s understated but better for it, show’s that he doesn’t have to hit the high notes to sound great. It’s quite a funky guitar on this song which is right up my street, also love the drums on this song. Thin Line is heavy but slow and funky. The song is great but at the end it slows right down unexpectantly and becomes incredibly poignant and to be honest, quite beautiful, not something you normally say about Maiden but there you are. It’s an amazing end to an amazing album, and it leaves you wanting more. In case you haven’t guessed, I highly recommend Brave New World, it’s right up there with Maiden’s very best albums. Enjoy.
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on 2 June 2016
After the 90's provided a questionable time for Maiden, a comeback was needed, with the classic line up reassembled with the inclusion of Janick Gers, Brave New World was released in 2000 and set to right the wrongs of Virtual XI

Track 1: The Wicker Man - Whereas inferior to the original Radio Version with extra vocal harmonies, The Wicker Man is a perfect blend of classic Maiden harmonies and prog rock, creating an anthem that excels at ramping up energy at the beginning of the album, filled with some excellent vocals from the retuning Dickinson, and a marked improvement in guitar work thanks to Smith

Track 2: Ghost of the Navigator - Really cementing the direction 'New Maiden' was taking, Ghost of the Navigator is a modern classic, the symphonic opening, leads into a song that balances aggression and melody perfectly, Dickinson flourishes in the pre-Chrous demonstrating some of the best key changing abilities in metal, one of the album's best

Track 3: Brave New World - An incredible title track, a mesmerising intro that definitely reminisces prog icons like Dream Theater, based on the book of the same name, the lyricism on display is excellent, with Dickinson showing a wide range of abilities, the guitar trio also show appreciable restraint and slow the bass to flourish when it needs too

Track 4: Blood Brothers - A song originally written with Blaze for his doomed 3rd album with Maiden that never materialised, it shows with Bruce adopting a lowering baritone for the track, one that is a fantastic live anthem, with a Chrous that not only acts as an emotional representation of the bands reunion but one that fans can join in with live and creates a sense of union, another modern classic with Harris shining on the Bass

Track 5: The Mercenary - A track reminiscent of 'The Trooper' fast and aggressive, a fantastic anthem that evokes a Piece of Mind era Maiden, some absolutely stunning bass and drum work from Harris and McBrain respectively elevate the song creating a harsh harmony with Dickinson's punchy vocals

Track 6: Dream of Mirrors - A philosophical Prog masterpiece, Dream of Mirrors wastes no time getting started with a bang, and traverses through multiple time signatures acting as the albums true epic, Dickinson gives his best performance of the album and one of the best in his career, middling in a multitude of ranges, meddling with some of the most resonant lyrics the band has produced, a song where every member of the band shines, Fast triple threat guitars, punchy bass and heart pounding drums and culminate in one hell of an anthem

Track 7: The Fallen Angel - The shortest of the album and of New Maiden in general, a relatively simple track where Dickinson and Harris act as the standouts, a Chrous that is as melodic as it is catchy, short and effective

Track 8: The Nomad - Easily the weakest track of the anthem, it speaks volumes for the overall quality then that The Nomad is still a great anthem, the three guitarists take centre stage here providing some mesmerising prog riffs, however the song simply lacks the lyrical punch of the others

Track 9: Out of the Silent Planet - A slower paced ballad, a introduction that evokes the vast expanse of space leads to some truly wonderful multi-layered vocals that compliment the guitar chords well before the track thunders into the main body of the song where the whole band fire everything they have, some fantastic lyrics are delivered spectacularly, the best moments come from when Harris and Smith join Dickinson and sing smoothly over the guitar and drum work, a great anthem

Track 10: The Thin Line Between Love and Hate - Feeling like an extension of Out of the Silent Planet, it shares many of the same qualities, the greatest moments coming in the form of the three voices creating a unified feel among lyrics that a very nostalgic and hopeful feeling, much like the rest of Brave New World, not one of the greatest closing tracks, also not one of the worst, however the greatest accomplishment of the track comes in the final third where it all slows down and becomes contemplative as much as it is relaxing, Dickinson performs the final lines with a lot of gusto and it comes clear that the band are back on top form as McBrain exclaims 'I F*****g missed this' and solidifies, Maiden are back

Brave New World has some of the greatest tracks of Maiden's career, and acts as one of the greatest come back albums of all time, emotionally resonant and classically metal all while coming into Proggressive styles that define modern maiden, Brave New World is a classic, so following this, what in the world would Maiden do?
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'F*** I missed it' the drummer chirps at the end of this fine record. Just listened to this a second time and Im impressed - Sits comfortably with their best albums - has a classy feel with each song strongly crafted and some really memorable tracks too.

So yes 'F*** I missed it' was the perfect way to end the album because I was thinking exactly the same thing.......Nomad is astounding unto itself but every track is memorable and adventurous and hardrock tastic!

Anyway MAIDEN TOP ALBUMS EVER that you should check out if you are a newbie.....

1 The Number of The Beast (THE ALBUM)
2 The Book Of Souls (almost THE ALBUM - but BEAST has the history)
3 Piece Of Mind (a REVELATION - contains my new fave tracks ever)
4 Seventh Son of the Seventh Son (one of the strongest full of classics)
5 Somewhere in Time (full of catchy choruses - some of the best lyrics of all the albums)
6 Fear Of The Dark (The last of the iconic records from their first peak years - now is their new peak era of course.....)
7 Powerslave (love it but love the above more!)
9 Iron Maiden (whilst outside the top few - some all time brilliant tracks and I like the production on this record despite its rep as poorly mixed - I think it really works and it takes you back - Strange World is a fave- it all is!!)
8 Brave New World (my newest addition to the top 10 - its really good and has just moved up my chart - but just look up further from here...its a pretty steep climb for any album to get in there.......love out of the silent planet..the talisman....the wicker man is a great opener..but the Nomad is one of their best ever....)
10 A Matter Of Life And Death - Very strong return to form this one - Just listen to These Colours Dont Run.....great tracks mostly from start to finish.......Id say this Brave New World and of course BofSouls are the albums which truely rock from the last 16 years.......

Anyway - a brilliant band - there is no denying these guys along with Black Sabbath are the initiators of true Heavy Metal....great great stuff!!!!!!

Pop Quiz - which album was more important Beast or Paranoid???!!!
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on 29 January 2015
The 90s were'nt very kind to Iron Maiden. The emergence of grunge at the start of the decade had a bad effect on their brand of good old fashioned heavy metal. Then there was the departure of guitarist Adrian Smith, followed by key member Bruce Dickinson 3 years later. 2 lacklustre studio albums ,followed by 2 better albums with Blaze Bayley that were unfortunately slagged off by the press/critics.
By the end of the decade, things had got better for the band. Bruce was back on vocals. Adrian Smith rejoined and made I.M a 6 piece. Grunge was dead and buried. Heavy metal was given a new lease of life with the advent of nu metal and stoner rock. Come the year 2000, a well known rock mag said that Iron Maiden were the coolest thing on the planet right now.
Brave New World is, I think, one of Maidens best ever albums. Every song (and I mean every song) is great and top class. Best one has to be Dream of Mirrors. The song slowly, but eventually builds up into a killer chorus. " I only dream in black and white" he sings. Who dreams in black and white? I like those lyrics, man! Both the singles The Wicker Man, and Out of the Silent Planet did well for them in the charts too; and for the 1st time, they even made use of a string section in the song Blood Brothers. I get so used to expecting one of those "epics" on a Maiden album, and the great thing is that they can do it so well without getting too boring and self indulgent. As much as I liked the Blaze Bayley era; I think that getting Bruce to rejoin the band is the best decision they ever made. Album sales improved. so did their chart positions .There was renewed interest in the band, and like I mentioned earlier, they were dubbed the "coolest thing on the planet" at the time. The coolest thing ea, they certainly are alright, and always will be.
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on 16 November 2000
This is the best Maiden Album for a long time and I think it has more to do with the return of Adrian Smith than Bruce Dickinson (although his return is more than welcome and I for one was well chuffed). Adrian Smith brings a certain melodic tone to Maiden that was sadly lacking since his departure. I am not knocking the Maiden's Blaze years, they just did not do it for me.
This album is a real breath of fresh air and a great move for Maiden sticking with the formula of great music but breaking the mould with some of the tracks containing vocal and synth effects... nice (some of the lyrics are a bit pants thought but that has always been part of the fun with Maiden). Steve never fails to deliver on the bass and Niko is fast becoming one of the best metal drummers around! The three guitar combo works surprisingly well (even live, what a feat!!) too.
With modern Metal seeming to be more concerned with masks and contact lenses than decent music, it's a welcome relief to have Maiden back on top form, nice one boys, up the Irons!!
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on 15 August 2000
'Brave New World' is the rebirth of Iron Maiden and possibly of good old fashioned Heavy Metal. Without Bruce Dickinson, the band were not the same but now with Bruce back and new guy Janick, things couldn't be better. Some of the tracks like 'The Wicker Man' and 'Fallen Angel' could easily fit in with earlier albums such as 'Powerslave' or 'Piece of Mind', but others such as 'Blood Brothers' and 'Dream of Mirrors' definitely break new ground for Iron Maiden. 'Blood Brothers' is one of the finest tracks Maiden have ever made. It's lyrics and central guitar piece are really powerful - not headbanging stuff - more like metallic art, if that makes sense. I think you'll find that most of the tracks start off slow, but don't be impatient - they're worth the wait! Like 'Dream of Mirrors' - the 4 or 5 minute slow intro is followed by a speed metal middle which is really breathtaking. Also, the title track's pretty good too. With the 'Brave New World' album, the band have tried to go for a Led Zeppelin style progression (kind of where Metallica are now - although Bruce says he had the idea for that back in the '80s). So a lot of the tracks are even more lyrically based that usual. But there's still loads of old fashioned Maiden speed guitars and Bruce Dickinson's unmistakable operatic style singing to connect it with their earlier work. Definitely one of the best albums they've ever recorded. I bought it in the first week it was released and it hasn't left my CD player for more than 20 minutes since. Maiden fans owe it to themselves to buy it.
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VINE VOICEon 20 October 2010
For basically the whole of the nineties Iron Maiden had released junk and had become a relic who only gave greatest hits tours. Towards the end of the decade many new metal bands (without mentioning nu) had brought the genre towards its second golden age. Many young upstarts had the likes of Maiden and Metallica as heroes and wished to emulate, equal, and better the great albums of the eighties. In short Maiden barely existed, but when the news came that old vocalist and guitarist Dickinson and Smith would be rejoining for a new album, fans had reason to be cautiously excited. I don't think many fans, even the most die-hard loyal Maiden fans expected this album to be the return to form that it was. Not only was crowd pleaser but critics took notice too, the album sold well, the following tour was huge, and most importantly it was their best album in over 10 years. Many would feel that it was even their best album to date. The beast was back.

`The Wicker Man' kick starts the album in the best possible way with Maiden's best song in 10 years. This is fast, angry, features a big chorus, catchy melodies, storming guitars, and the return of Brucie. The band, out of nowhere, suddenly seem rejuvenated and full of energy and this opener sets a standard which is continued throughout the entire record, unlike the previous few albums which had strong openers but soon fell apart. The song was a fairly big hit, Grammy nominated, and has been played recently on the Final Frontier tour.

`Ghost Of The Navigator' in classic Maiden style opens with a big, moody, tone setting riff before some crashing guitars and drums follow through like a bulldozer coming into your living room. The song shifts between sections quickly, each one as melodic and entertaining as the one before- they have clearly learned from the criticism they garnered on previous releases. Every note is urgent and considered.

`Brave New World' starts with another quiet riff which Bruce follows with the vocals. It doesn't take long before this title track really gets into top gear with Bruce letting rip (never sounding better) and the guitars crunching in. The chorus is simple and repetitive but once again there is a flawless ear for a tune. The first part of this album already has more merit than the last 2 put together.

`Blood Brothers' is packed with strings, good bass, and any number of memorable riffs and melodies. This can be seen as another dedication to Maiden fans, or even as a dedication to each band member. Dickinson belts out the chorus, the lyrics are good enough, and there are plenty of shifts in the music which stop anything becoming repetitive.

`The Mercenary' starts at a million miles an hour slowing itself only for a vicious, contemplative chorus. The band seem to have suddenly become much sharper in the criticism of modern life, more angry, and more keen to make a change. We get a furious solo, more terrific riffage, and of course classic metal vocals soaring to the heavens.

`Dream Of Mirrors' echoes some of the ideas and sounds of past albums with a character unsure of his reality. After a loud introduction we are taken down a few steps with yet another classic riff and melody. This builds up to a light chorus (one which the crowd loves to participate in) before circling round again and gradually growing in power and decibels before ripping you a new one a few minutes in. The main chorus blasts around the sound system before we get another 5 and a half minutes of breathless joy and a few surprises.

`The Fallen Angel' is one of the forgotten songs from the album. There isn't anything bad here, another good chorus, good pace, nice vocals and guitars. Nothing particular stands out, this is another solid album track.

`The Nomad' is Maiden at their most thrash, angry, and raw. This is another epic, reaching nine minutes and blends Eastern styles with monstrous guitars, riffs, and lyrics reminiscent of Powerslave. The first phase of the song is fairly basic verse chorus stuff with decent melodies before Dickinson reaches for the high notes. We then get an extended middle section with solos intertwining before returning to the chorus and a softer section. This is all as atmospheric as the epics of their 80s concept albums, growing with further instruments and depth of backing chords until we return to an altered version of the chorus.

`Out Of The Silent Planet' shows some of the repetition of lyrics from the last album and seems now like a strange choice as a single. Thankfully though, the music is good enough that most of the bad points can be glazed over. The guitar and keyboards intro is good, blending into the lyrics which mostly consist of the song title. Naturally we soon get galloping guitars and Dickinson screeching over some nice melodies. Based on Forbidden Planet the lyrics cover some themes from that movie as well as giving us some typically Maiden views of the future- desolate, strange, hostile, and filled with a warped vision of humanity. Once again the mistakes of the present will cause the despair of the future.

`The Thin Line Between Love And Hate' closes the album in suitably storming style after such a great collection of songs. More riffs, more furious playing, decent melodies, and a huge chorus all leave us hoping for the next album. It is another 8 minute plus track but the time flies by just like the rest of the album. The song shifts around 5 minutes in to a calmer, introspective section which stands out from the rest of the song, Dickinson's vocals sound odd here, and it all builds up again with a bit of funk and a few more riffs- why not?

Brave New World showed not only the fans, but all of metal, and perhaps all of music that the band could still pull it off after seemingly being lost forever. Better than most albums of the year by young pretenders the band also succeeded where many of their peers and predecessors failed, showing that you could still make some of your best work with youth long behind you. They give the fans what they want here though with a new, angrier, confident style. In their 3rd decade they produce on of the best albums of their career. Perhaps the greatest feat is that this was not just a one-off, but a return which would continue to be built upon on subsequent albums.
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on 30 May 2000
A lot has changed in the world of heavy metal since Bruce Dickinson left Iron Maiden.His return,along with guitarist Adrian Smith has resulted in the bands best effort for years. The single 'The Wicker Man ' kicks things off in good style and the most striking feature is the size of the sound. Dickinson's voice is back to its Number of the Beast era best and the general quality of musicianship is superb. Title track'Brave new world' harks back to 'Piece of Mind' with its slow building start and powerful chorus. The straight ahead rocking theme continues with such tracks as 'The Mecenary'and 'The Fallen Angel'. Kevin Shirley's production gives the record a stunningly exciting edge,something which has been lacking for many years. This album places Maiden firmly back on the map as the masters of epic metal.
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on 17 November 2000
I patiently read through the first page of reviews from fans of the BNW opus, and was heartened by most of the comments I read.
I was actually managing to hold the belief that there were music fans left. However, after glancing through "music fan from manchester"'s critique of the album, I felt I must pass on my own judgement.
This album is as good as Piece..., Seventh Son..., and Somewhere..., and far superior to Powerslave, Fear of... and No Prayer, three of the musically weakest overall Maiden albums ever, in my opinion, even if they do have their good moments.
But as someone once said, we don't necessarily all need to agree on our favourite Maiden songs or albums.
I am not a head-banger, and never have been.
I enjoy listening to the considerable musical abilities of the, now, six-piece, and enjoy the instrumental sections more than the vocals, most of the time.
The BNW album is abounding with melody, with all six members having the opportunity to take the lead over the piece.
I am not going to scribe a comment about each song, but the highlights, for me, are the title track itself, Ghost of the Navigator, The Thin Line Between Love And Hate, The Mercenary and The Nomad. Steve Harris always seems to write great songs called "The..." something or other.
The weakest moments are Fallen Angel and Out of the Silent Planet, but I know they would stand out on any other band's album.
I purchased the latter as a single, for posterity. And to try and put Maiden up at the top of the charts to show the S Club 7 'music' fan just what good music is all about.(although 4 members of that aforementioned 'band' ARE extremely attractive - and I'm not talking about any of the blokes!)
All in all, Brave New World is a must-buy for any existing or past Maiden fan.
Or, simply the best album someone who has never listened to Maiden can buy.
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on 10 September 2001
I listened to this in France before it hit the shops in the UK and I was hooked. Glad to see Bruce is back, and still rockin'. The Mercenary and the Navigator are my favourites - no-one's quite like Iron Maiden - they truly rock !
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