You've got to hand it to Iron Maiden. After two decades of recording and releasing albums, the British sextet still has its share of fresh ideas, something it proves once more on A Matter of Life and Death. The opening tracks "Different World" and "Brighter than a Thousand Suns" show, more clearly than ever, the group's progressive rock roots and its affinity for upsetting expectations about what a heavy record should sound like. But some of the material--"These Colours Don't Run" and the epics "Lord of Light," "The Legacy," and "The Longest Day"--also suggests that the band could stand to expand outside its comfort zone a little more often. By now we know what to expect even from the most unusual Maiden album and that familiarity ultimately sinks A Matter of Life and Death faster than any fad at the forefront of the heavy rock scene. At best the record shows the band is still vital, at worst it shows us that Steve Harris and company are coming up a little bit winded these days. --Jedd Beaudoin
Limited Edition two LP vinyl pressing of this highly anticipated 2006 release by the finest British Metal band, bar none, Features 10 tracks including the first single 'The Reincarnation of Benjamin Breeg'. EMI.