Artist: Iron Maiden
Title: “History Of Fear”
Label: Locomotive Records
Release Date: 1/30/2007
If you have read any of my reviews on these “unauthorized documentaries” in the past you already know that I am not much the fan of them. I mean how can any self respecting music fan enjoy a piece that has not one note of the music from the band being discussed or relevant commentary from people in the bands history that truly matter in the larger scheme of things. Let’s face it, how many people care about the guy who knew the drum roadie the band had before they were signed (and I apologize for the absurd example, but I needed to stress the point). Then I saw this one and while it was guilty of some of the same transgressions of its predecessors it also offered some time for the viewer with two of the bands former members from their formative years. This instantly made it a different piece and a little easier to tolerate for the hour that I often felt I would lose at the sake of getting to the end of these things. The members who they talk to are Dennis Stratton, the bands guitarist before Adrian Smith, and his comments are interesting since they fall so much on the bands formation years. Stratton would be fired for personal and creative differences in 1980. The winning commentary comes from the bands original lead singer, at least on record and that is Paul DiAnno. Paul’s unique voice graces both the debut “Iron Maiden” and “Killers” and as far as history is concerned he is part of some of the most important Iron Maiden songs that were ever recorded. Paul comments on the beginning years according to his memory as he sits in a pub sipping on a pint of beer. They do talk to some of the other Iron Maiden members but it is not new footage and seems to be more public domain stuff or archive, while the Stratton/DiAnno stuff is very recent. I think this would have kicked serious ass if it had more new commentary from the bands lineup in 2007, or at least some healthy content from Nicko McBrain who is an absolute riot in interviews.
When it is complete you will probably not watch it again and that makes me feel these are better for rental or borrowing than purchase but of course the Iron Maiden completist might want it just to have and you can’t fault that sort of support for this music. The worse thing that this will do to you is make you grab a few Maiden CD’s and put them in your changer for a good dose of the pure and best stuff the genre ever had thrust upon it. As a Metal head there is no reason for you to not have any of their stuff in your collection, and it’s a recommendation that you have at least five of them for good measure. “Up The Irons”.
Official Website: www.ironmaiden.com