I caught the highly entertaining Iron Maiden documentary last night, and realized I’ve been taking this legendary band for granted for a very long time. I first discovered them in high school, when Piece of Mind was released and was a somewhat rabid fan for a few years, then left them behind to follow my sometimes unfortunate changes in musical taste.
Iron Maiden: Flight 666 brought it all back. The reasons I liked Maiden in the first place are all still firmly in place – the music, which blasted through The Neptune (inspiring much head-bobbing) and the men behind the music who are front and center in this film. Maiden’s truly dedicated fans are captured in a way all of us can relate to and I wish I had been at any/all of the shows that were made possible by the band’s ingenuity and awesome customized Boeing 757, Ed Force One.
I knew Bruce Dickinson piloted the band, crew and equipment, and am not sure why, but I loved seeing him in his ‘pilot suit’, complete with tie, in the cockpit or checking the plane pre-flight. Given the distances flown and the tight show schedule, I have no idea how he had the energy to pull it all off. By the end of the film, The Neptune felt a little bit like a venue, as the audience was applauding at the end of songs and broke out in cheers as the credits started to roll.
Pictured is Maiden fan Norm, who has seen the band live several times, first in 2000. He was unable to choose a favorite song, saying it changes day-to-day. Even without the marquee, there would have been no doubt about the subject matter of the film, as Iron Maiden shirts were sported by every third or fourth person in line.
I’ve never seen Iron Maiden live, and before viewing Flight 666, had no desire to, but I’ll be there, next chance I get.