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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on September 16, 2006
The nineties were a disastrous time for Iron Maiden. Then came the awesome Brave New World but I was still sceptical and I thought that maybe their reunion inspiration will fade. Indeed, Dance of Death showed some signs of fatigue although it contains some of Maiden's finest songs (Pashendale, No More Lies, Dance of Death, Face in the Sand) besides some of their worst (Wildest Dreams). But I never imagined that their third post-reunion effort will be such a masterpiece! This is the most epic album of the group, the songwriting is brilliant ( I wish some of the new groups learn from that). Bruce Dickinson is one of the last great voices in metal. His singing is impeccable throughout the album. The rest of the band is also in top shape, the sound of the album is perfect.

Some fans critisize the length of the songs, but I think that metal is not meant to be a fast food music. For me Different World (4 minutes, the only short song on the album) is the weakest. It's an OK opener, but it's poppy refrain doesn't fit with the dark and heavy mood of the rest of the album. All the rest of the tracks deserve 10 stars, but probably Brighter than a Thousand Suns, The Longest Day , For the Greater Good of God, These Colours Don't Run, The Reincarnation of Benjamin Breeg and the Legacy stand slightly higher above the rest with their intensity. This album ranks among the best albums of the group (for me they are at least six, I count the bad ones which are three) and it will become a classic in the history of Iron Maiden and heavy metal. And after six great reunion years, Maiden are rejuvenated and definitely back to stay.
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Majestic is the best word I can think of to describe A Matter of Life and Death, the 14th studio album by Iron Maiden (and 3rd of the "reunion era). That, and classic. This truly is classic Maiden: Most songs running between 7 and 9 minutes long, recorded virtually live off the floor, raw and epic. I truly believe that this represents the absolute peak of Maiden's creativity. While not a concept album like Seventh Song, it does indeed follow themes: war, religion, storytelling.

Anybody who thought Dance of Death sounded tired had better get ready to be blown away by a revitalized band. Maybe doing that "Early Years" tour got Maiden hungry to write something new and epic. Who knows what happened? Either way, this is the best album of the reunion era, and a shining moment in the Maiden canon. While "Different World" starts the show in a fast and furious way, similar to "Wildest Dreams" from Dance of Death, this is no re-tread. This time, melody is at the forefront.

The triple guitars have never sounded better, the songwriting has never been stronger, and Bruce is still wailing the whole way through. I can't pick a favourite song, every one is excellent, but here are some highlights:

"Wildest Dreams", a killer fast opener.
"These Colours Don't Run", a war epic, the three guitars meshing into one ferocious whole.
"The Longest Day", another war epic, with mournful melodic chorus.
"Bejamin Breeg", riffiness emphasized.
"For The Greater Good of God", which is perhaps the most epic of all the epics, absolutely stunning, every second of it is dramatic.

The sound of this album is the perfect mix of heavy and raw with just enough polish. The sound straight from the mix was so hot, they didn't even have to master this album, so they left it unmastered. Seriously. Even the cover art is a vast improvement over Dance of Death. Eddie leading his troops of death into some unknown battle.

Try to pick up the version that came with the insightful documentary DVD. Also, be sure to pick up the singles. B-sides included:
Hot live 2006 versions of "Hallowed", "The Trooper", "Run To The Hills", "Iron Maiden", "Different World" and even "Benjamin Breeg". There was also a studio version of their cover of "Hocus Pocus" by Focus!
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on October 23, 2016
Although there are some good Maiden tunes here, they started going back into the long "Epics" again. This album is pretty much middle of the road. The previous two albums were excellent, but this one just muddles along.
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on May 27, 2014
I purchased this Cd for two reasons, I grew-up listening to Iron Maiden and I Love Tanks-Armoured Fighting Vehicles..So the cd cover was a prompt also for me to purchase..
I am a retired Tank Crewman..Battlefield speculations, of My Time, rated a Soldier's (Ground Pounder) life span at 3:00 minutes and a Tank Crewmans life span at 7:minutes in all out battle..
The cd title fits well with this information..
I found the cd well worth listening and rocking to..
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on December 29, 2008
I am a life long maiden fan so my review is probably biased but this is an outstanding album. Maiden went through a tough period in the 90's but with the re-introduction of Bruce and Adrian Smith, the band has been progressively improving with each subsequent release in the 2000's. This album can qualify with Maiden's best from the 80's. The music is typical Maiden but some songs like the Legacy and Brighter than a thousand suns, go somewhat beyond the Maiden box. As well, the lyrics are outstanding especially in the aforementioned the legacy. Give it a listen, you will not be disappointed. Noteworthy songs: they're all good but the ones that will stick in your head are Brighter than a thousand suns, Benjamin Breeg, these colours don't run, and the legacy is an absolute masterpiece.
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on September 19, 2006
OMG...Maiden just keep impressing me. Usually with older metal bands, their new albums are all crap. This album is definatly not. I would have to say it's probably there third best album, definatly the best since ssoass. There is not on bad track on this album. The sound is truly amazing, kinda of a darker feel, but extremly entertaining to listen too. It's hard to pick just one great song on here, but if I would have to I would pick For the greater good of god. The lagacy has some nice acoustic guitar work. Some parts in the legacy reminds me of Led Zepplin. Every metal fan should have the album. Truly a masterpiece.
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on September 9, 2006
This is one of the best albums of Iron Maiden.

Certainly this album can easily fit into IM's golden era albums (1984 -1989) with 7th son and PowerSlave and somewhere in time.

For some of you, it might take a few listening before you can start liking the album, but if you are a true fan of Maiden's style, this album will certainly exceed all your expectations.

I will give it a 9.1 out of 10

Best tracks: The legacy, For the greater good of God, These colours don't Run, Out of the shadows.

PS: The legacy is probably one of their best tracks ever !!
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on June 9, 2012
this is an amazing CD every song awsome it shiped fast worth every cent i love this CD and if your a maiden fan you have to buy this it not the same as the 80's stuff but diferent dosent make it any less awsome
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on November 5, 2006
I have spent last 33 years of my life as a hard rock/metal fan.

In my opinion this is the best album by Iron Maiden predominantly due

to the fact that, unlike some of their earlier efforts where it is

easy to pick the best song of the album, this album is a battery of

one masterpiece after the other. Some say that it is for the mature metal

music lovers. I think the maturity is demanded only in the understanding

of the music and even my teenage son who is a musician likes the album a lot.
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on November 9, 2006
Yet another good album released by Bruce and the band. Thank heavens Bruce came back because I hadn't purchased an Irom Maiden Album in the 90's after Bruce left. Since Brave New World they have released Dance of Death and now Breeg, and they continue to be great!!! Out of the Shadows a 2nd favorite on this album is a good tune to mellow down to after a hard days work. This album is classic maiden with again a strong sound of bass which continues to signiture their good albums.....

Rated - Giggidy!!!
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