The Final Frontier

Studio Album by released in 2010

The Final Frontier review

Transfiguration of Iron Maiden in the new millennium

Almost thirty years ago the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal legends Iron Maiden released their revolutionary record The Number Of The Beast (1982). It kicked off the band’s best albums streak including Seventh Son Of The Seventh Son (1988) considered by the musicians themselves their best effort to date. As the nineties stepped in, Maiden feel victim to tribulations. They first had to let go guitarist Adrian Smith, and then, their singer Bruce Dickinson, one of the best rock-voices of all times. This even ignited some speculations about the ensemble’s upcoming collapse. Those who believed so could not even think that Iron Maiden would not only stay alive, but become even stronger as the new millennium came. After the return of prodigal sons Bruce and Adrian, the number of the members grew up to six. Iron Maiden had three guitarists, which opened up completely new and previously undiscovered opportunities. In 2000, the Englishmen released a magnificent album called Brave New World. Despite the far-from-young age, the musicians promised to give hundreds of concerts and make a few new albums. Since then, the heavy-metal monsters have issued three more CDs, Dance Of Death (2003), A Matter Of Life And Death (2006), and, finally, The Final Frontier (2010), the subject under discussion.

A good lot of pleasures from The Final Frontier

The fifteenth studio full-length album from the heavy-metal leaders is a good lot of surprises, gifts and discoveries for each and every Iron Maiden to find and enjoy. The title track, Satellite 15… The Final Frontier is not entirely a song because in the beginning it’s just a futuristic intro, which sounds too weird on an Iron Maiden album. It is followed by vigorous El Dorado, an official single off the CD. Number three is Mother Of Mercy, the first song of the anti-war category. This idea is developed by the epic When The Wild Wind Blows. The song has an astonishing text based on the eponymous cartoon about a fictitious nuclear attack from the Soviet Union on the Great Britain. If you follow the lyrics, the eleven-minute track will speed through your mind like a flash of light. Once you taste its melodies, you will want to replay them one more time. After a number of listening, you are likely to love all the tracks of The Final Frontier; but there are those that will grab your heart all at once. Check put the ballad Coming Home with Bruce’s unimaginable singing in the chorus, or the nine-minute Talisman, another story about seas and their conquerors from Iron Maiden, and, at last, Man Who Would Be King with mesmerizing mid tempos and soft guitar riffs.

Iron Maiden don’t get older; they get better

A Matter Of Life And Death, Iron Maiden’s previous album released four years ago, was equally interesting and contradictory. That long player did not have anything similar to what the English band used to do in the eighties. Yet Iron Maiden were not set to play what they already played, something that was attractive twenty years before and could not be attractive then. The Final Frontier has a lot in common with the predecessor. It features a plenty of long compositions, and the guitarists from time to time put aside straightforward and simple heavy metal riffs and solos offering prog-metal elements, which enriched their songs with complex structures and fancy times. Sure, there is no point expecting for new smashers like Run To The Hills, or Be Quick Or Be Dead, golden classics of the band. We have another epoch now, and the audience has different tastes. Beginning from 2000, Iron Maiden have been releasing new albums pretty seldom, making up for it with their extreme durations. The Final Frontier’s 76 minutes could be a crucible for any listener if The Final Frontier were something different from what it is. Practically leaving in the past their long and alike intros with choruses based on one and the same line repeated endlessly (both widely presented on the band’s previous three albums and condemned severely), Iron Maiden recorded an amazing CD that becomes better and better as you keep listening to it.