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Classic Review: Iron Maiden - Somewhere In Time
Iron Maiden
Somewhere In Time

Label: Capitol Records
Year released: 1986
Duration: 51:20
Tracks: 8
Genre: Heavy Metal


Review online: January 28, 2002
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers' Rating
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Rated 4.65/5 (92.99%) (117 Votes)

This was my first Iron Maiden album back in 1987, and, in line with the "first album syndrome", this is one of my favorite Maiden albums. The order was large following such huge successes as "The Number Of The Beast" and "Powerslave", and I like to think they did quite a good job creating a worthy successor with "Somewhere In Time". There isn't much I do not like on this album, except maybe some overdone repetitive lyrics on the opener "Caught Somewhere In Time" (still a killer song), and "Deja Vu" has always been one of those songs that I just can't decide whether I love or hate it - depends on my mood really. This album saw the band use guitar synths, something that is still being reproached to them today. I'm not much of a fan of that stuff, but Maiden did a good job with them on this album - that's the difference between real musicians and clowns who just pick up on gadgets to make up for their lack of creativity. ;)

My favorites on this album are "Heaven Can Wait", "Stranger In A Strange Land" and the epic "Alexander The Great" (whose Egyptian theme seems a bit more fit to "Powerslave", but the actual style is definitely S.I.T.) "Heaven Can Wait" is just great in terms of speed and Adrian Smith's guitar solo on it is one of my all-time favorites (I remember watching that part of the video over and over - the tape eventually died...) The "oh oh oh" chanting has always sounded a bit weird to me, but the band put it to good use for a few years by inviting fans on stage to sing during that part. The opening riff on "Stranger In A Strange Land" is what caught my attention from the beginning and for long was my favorite Maiden song. As for "Alexander The Great", I still consider it one of the band's best epic songs. Back in the days, the combination of the Egyptian theme with metal music was just amazing, and it still sounds as good as it did when I first heard it.

"Sea Of Madness" has a bit of a chaotic start, with drums sounding like they're coming from everywhere and Harris' bass being way more forward than on the other songs. This one's a bit of a grower. "The Loneliness Of The Long Distance Runner" is the one I always forget - it's not bad, it's not excellent - sort of in-between. I often listened to the album and essentially missed it because I still had the other songs playing in my head. Go figure.

Pretty much all of Maiden's 80's albums are classic material, but "Somewhere In Time" have always seemed to be kind of the bastard child of that era - undeservingly so. This is one of the albums that belong into any metal fan's collection. Did I mention the killer cover art? Highly recommended.

Additional Information

- This album was re-released in Enhanced CD format

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