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Review: Iron Maiden - Rock In Rio
Iron Maiden
Rock In Rio

Label: EMI
Year released: 2002
Duration: 175 min.

Rating: 5/5

Review online: August 10, 2002
Reviewed by: Pierre Bégin
Readers Rating
Rock In Rio

Rated 4.6/5 (91.91%) (47 Votes)

On January 19th, 2001, Iron Maiden headlined the Rock in Rio festival to a massive crowd of 250,000 and a global TV audience of millions. Iron Maiden played a two-hour set that was shot by 18 cameras and later edited by Steve Harris. It was the final gig of their Brave New World tour. FINALLY, I got my hands on this jewel! Originally, it was supposed to be released in August 2001 and finally was released in July 2002 here in Canada. When I bought my DVD player last year, it was mainly for this release! That shows you how much I waited for this DVD! (-: Was it worth this long-wait? ABSOLUTELY!

The gig begins with a beautiful and dramatic intro named "Arthur’s Farewell" from the movie "First Knight". This intro puts us directly into the show with very good lights effects. Suddenly, we see Adrian Smith enter the huge stage with the riff intro of "The Wicker Man". Bang! Iron Maiden enters the stage to great acclaim. They begin their set with the first three songs off "Brave New World". In fact, they played 6 songs off their latest album, "The Wicker Man", "Ghost Of The Navigator", "Brave New World", "Blood Brothers", "The Mercenary" and "Dream Of Mirrors". It’s a lot of new songs when you are called Iron Maiden and you’ve got so much classics songs and albums. After reading many interviews with Bruce Dickinson, I can say that it’s a message; they are not a retro band and they are still looking forward and I agree 100% with him. Anyway, these new songs are very good and sound great live.

They played of course their classic songs like "Wrathchild", "2 Minutes To Midnight", "The Trooper", "The Evil That Men Do" and their final song "Iron Maiden" but also their more recent ones in the Blaze-era like the progressive 10 minutes long "Sign Of The Cross" and "The Clansman".

For the encore, Iron Maiden played four classic songs: "The Number Of The Beast", "Hallowed Be Thy Name", "Sanctuary" and ended the gig with "Run To The Hills" after a photo of the band members taken before the large crowd.

My highlights are among other things the intro to "The Wicker Man", "Blood Brothers" a song that I didn’t like too much on the album but really dig live, "The Trooper" and the always wonderful "Hallowed Be Thy Name".

Iron Maiden’s performance is top notch! They all seem very healthy and move a lot on stage (except of course Nicko). (-; It’s great to see and hear the interaction between the three guitarists. Janick plays a lot of leads guitar. Bruce Dickinson’s voice is splendid and powerful. Nicko McBrain plays very tight but a little bit faster on some tunes (like he always did anyway). There is a lot of footage of the always-smiling Nicko behind his kit and this is great because we don’t see him very much live due to his drum. Steve Harris as usual does a great job on bass, but also on the editing of the DVD. The performance of course includes full pyros, scenery, lights and Eddie in the purest Iron Maiden tradition. Believe me, it’s impossible to listen to just one song or listen to the gig at low volume! (-; (It's possible when you live in an apartment ;) - ed.)

The second DVD contains some special features like in-depth personal interviews with band members, a documentary showing a day in the life of the band and 50 exclusive photos from Iron Maiden’s South American Tour, commentary from the official photographer, Ross Halfin. Very interesting to listen to the band members tell stuff about their career, how important the fans are for them and see the band in their day off. For instance, Adrian Smith is interviewed while fishing, Steve Harris at a soccer match (called football in Europe) and Bruce Dickinson fencing. Very well done.

All of this is included in a nice packaging. This is, without a doubt, the best metal DVD I've bought so far. Everything is perfect, the pictures taken from 18 cameras, the sounds in both Dolby Digital 5.1 and Full Rate DTS Surround (I prefer the D.D. 5.1 mix on my system, the voice is clearer and the overall sound is less "boomy") and the special features on the second DVD. It’s worth every single penny I spent for it. I recommend it for every metalhead who love this band, and they are numerous. Moreover, I see it as a very good start to show to the non-metal lovers how this music can be great and grandiose with plenty of energy, dexterity and pleasure to play! This DVD proves without a doubt that Iron Maiden has passed the test of time and is still the leader of heavy metal music. Two thumbs up for the mighty Maiden. Up the Irons!

Disc 1: Live concert

Track listing:

2.The Wicker Man
3.Ghost Of The Navigator
4.Brave New World
6.2 Minutes To Midnight
7.Blood Brothers
8.Sign Of The Cross
9.The Mercenary
10.The Trooper
11.Dream Of Mirrors
12.The Clansman
13.The Evil That Men Do
14.Fear Of The Dark
15.Iron Maiden
16.The Number Of The Beast
17.Hallowed Be Thy Name
19.Run To The Hills

Disc 2: Special features

1.Candid interviews with Steve Harris, Bruce Dickinson, Janick Gers, Dave Murray, Nicko McBrain and Adrian Smith. Subtitled in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese
2.A day in the life
3.Ross Halfin photo diary

Easter Eggs:

Note: The 17 Easter eggs are all on the second DVD. They are all short clips of about 30 seconds that show the band and crew fooling around, especially Bruce!

  • Highlight "Photo Diary", press "Left" and "Enter". It will reveal a clip in which sound engineer Kevin "Caveman" Shirley explains briefly how their sound console has levels which go up to 12 and that they tried to make them go to 13, but they "blew the fucking shit right up".
  • Select "The Band", highlight "Bruce Dickinson", press "Up" and "Enter".
  • Select "The Band" and "Dave Murray", highlight "Days Off", press "Up" and "Enter".
  • Select "The Band" and "Nicko McBrain", highlight "The Band", press "Down" and "Enter". (There are 3 different ones that appear randomly)
  • Select "The Band" and "Bruce Dickinson", highlight "Special Features", press "Down" and "Enter". (There are 9 different ones that appear randomly)
  • Select "The Band" and "Steve Harris", highlight "Days Off", press "Left" and "Enter".
  • Select "The Band" and "Janick Gers", highlight "Days Off", press "Up" and "Enter".
  • There are no Easter eggs for Adrian Smith (at least, I didn’t find any).

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