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Review: Bruce Dickinson - Tyranny of Souls
Bruce Dickinson
Tyranny of Souls

Label: Mayan Records
Year released: 2005
Duration: 43:34
Tracks: 10
Genre: Heavy Metal

Rating: 3.75/5

Review online: November 25, 2019
Reviewed by: Mjölnir
Readers Rating
Tyranny of Souls

Rated 4.3/5 (86%) (20 Votes)

We all know the story by now: Bruce wanted to explore genres other than Metal and had a solo project to do so alongside Iron Maiden before leaving in the <90s to focus on it, released some rock albums that were underwhelming at best, and then got back into Metal and released two well-regarded albums with Accident of Birth and the masterful The Chemical Wedding. He joined back with Maiden for Brave New World, only releasing this album back in 2005 and nothing else since then. This apparently served more as a project album rather than a band effort, and for better or worse, it kind of shows.

The first thing to note is that this is neither as heavy as Accident of Birth nor as proggy as The Chemical Wedding. Rather, this album is generally comprised of straightforward, slightly commercial Heavy Metal that ranges from speedier numbers like opener "Abduction" and the blazing "Power of the Sun" to slower, more epic songs like the adventurous "Kill Devil Hill" and "River of No Return". There's also a couple of songs that aren't strictly metal, such as the strummy acoustic ballad "Navigate the Seas of the Sun" and the silly rocker "Devil on a Hog". The performances are solid, and Bruce sounds as good as he ever did, but the songwriting is a little obvious for much of this, often feeling more like a race to the chorus than anything else. It's actually kind of odd how safe a lot of this sounds considering the variety on display.

I can't say I'm surprised that Bruce hasn't done any more solo work since this album, as while it's well produced and well performed, it sounds like he was getting a few more ideas out of his system with this before focusing on Maiden from then on. This isn't as good as the two albums before it, but it's light years better than most of the rest of his solo work. Worth a listen.

Other related information on the site
Review: Accident Of Birth (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
Review: The Chemical Wedding (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
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