131 of 135 people found the following review helpful
Iron Maiden's "Powerslave" was to metal what Michael Jackson's "Thriller" was to pop. If you were a fan of heavy metal in the 80's then this album was the soundtrack to your Saturday night out with the guys. There is just so much on this album to rave about, be it the killer chorus of "2 Minutes to Midnight", the great guitar track of "Flash of the Blade, the cool "Egyptian" sound to the title cut, of the epic "Rime of the Ancient Mariner". There was something here for every metal fan. Iron Maiden has made a career out of defying the norm, and in a time when most bands were riding the metal-pop wave, writing songs about Girls..Girls..Girls, or Talking Dirty to Me, Maiden's subject matter was the RAF during WWII and the Blitz with "Aces High". "Powerslave" is about Egyptian mythology, and the album also features a song about fencing "Flash of the Blade". Not your typical song matter for an 80's metal band. But the highlight of the album for me is "Rime of the Ancient Mariner", based on an 18th Century poem, this 12 minute epic tells the tale of a doomed captain and his ship, and is musically one of the most impressive songs in Maiden's catalog. If you haven't heard this song, then buy this album immediately! It's worth the price of the cd alone. It doesn't matter if you think "Powerslave" is Maiden's best album, or if you like "Beast" or "Piece of Mind" or any one of their other albums better, you have to respect Iron Maiden for what they accomplished with "Powerslave".
154 of 162 people found the following review helpful
on June 30, 2004
Im going to start by saying this album is in my top 5 favorite cds and i have over 100.
1. Aces High: This starts the album off with a bang. The guitar riffing is fast, high pitched, and adrenline pumping, not a very heavy song, but still metal and just as good.There is also a great solo by Dave Murray. You'll like this song if you like faster, higher pitched, metal songs. 10/10
2. Two Minutes to Midnight: This was Maidens highest single of this album and for good reason, it has a cool riff and a very catchy chorus. Bruce dickinson does a pretty good vocal performance on this song. The guitar riff is much like Ted Nugent's Stormtrooping. 10/10
3. Losfer Words (Big Orra):This was Maidens last instrumenatal,
and unfortunatly it was not another Ghengis Khan. It has a fast heavy Prog Rock Sounding riff to it, this song is complety unique and I haven't heard anything like it. 8/10
4. Flash of the blade: The song starts out with a unusual riff that sound like it could be part of a Ozzy Osbourne guitar solo.
when the lyrics start both guitarists do your typical iron maiden power cord riffing. There is a cool sychronized solo played in octaves in the guitar bridge. 8/10
5. The Duellists. Starts off with more heavy guitar riffing. Steve Harris plays his bass great in this song, providing a good backup sound in the chorus and the guitar solo that follows. Some parts of this song are very heavy, other parts are filled with melody, and in some parts there is both. There is an excellent guitar bridge and solo. 9/10
6. Back in the Village: It's a decent song but it pales in comparison to all the other songs, it has a really wierd sounding main riff. When the guitar solo starts at 2:30 the song gets really good with good riffs and a guitar solo. 7/10 but 9/10 for the solo
7. Powerslave: This is the secound best song on the album, the opening guitar riff is fast, galloping, and vicous sounding. Then it gets even better during the chorus when the riff changes into something even nastier and faster then the opening one. After the secound chorus the song complety mellows out into a slow beatiful guitar solo, this goes on for a minute then the drums kick in and in launches a fast, powerful, absoluty rocking guitar solo, with Steve Harris's Bass loudly playing along in a catchy little rhythm during the solos.
8. Rime of the Ancient Mariner. The album ends with one maidens finest songs ever. Every single memmber of the band shines on this song, there are more good guitar riffs in this song then on any 10 Nu-Metal albums, nevermind make that 20 albums, i kinda forgot how bad nu-metal is. This song is complety fasicnating and still amazes me. The whole album is worth the price just for this 14 minute epic masterpiece.
Sorry if you didn't understand me or i rambled on, but i just love this album, buy it!
Please tell me what you thought of my review by pressing yes or no, im just curious to see if i was helpful at all. Thanks for reading.
and one other thing listen to wrathchild (the reviewer below me.) he is absoluty right about everything he said, screw king diamond and all that satanic sh*t.
39 of 42 people found the following review helpful
The World Slavery Tour was my first concert ever and, in retrospect, what a great concert to start with! By 1984, when "Powerslave" came out, Iron Maiden had established themselves at the top of the heavy metal heap. Their previous album, "Piece of Mind," was a huge seller, and the successful World Piece Tour set the bar high for the band's follow up. The radio was already playing "Two Minutes to Midnight," so I had an idea we'd have more of the same good music.
When "Powerslave" came out, I grabbed a copy as soon at it hit the stores. I still remember the album -- especially the textured front cover and a mass of hieroglyphics to decipher. (See what you lose with CD art?) There's all sorts of little messages Derek Riggs included in the cover, you just needed to have a hieroglyphics key to decipher them. I also recall there being a message scrawled on the vinyl's lead-out that said, "There's only one!" I'm not sure if that was just a random note or if there was anything to it. Who knows, maybe I had the winning album in some sort of meet the band contest.
Even though I had gotten a small sample of the music, I was a bit disappointed on first listen. I guess I was looking to be slapped in the face and bowled over by it, but that didn't happen. Maybe it was because the band's sound had become more technical, weaving together more intricate melodies, I'm not sure. Nevertheless, over the years, I've grown to really love the album.
In retrospect, this is a pretty good place to start if you've never heard a full album from the band's earlier days. I've always thought "The Number of the Beast" was better, but "Powerslave" shows a band reaching their creative peak. You not only get songs that widely regarded as Iron Maiden classics: "Aces High," "2 Minutes to Midnight," and "Rime of the Ancient Mariner," but the other songs round out the album almost to perfection. I have especially grown to love "Back in the Village" and "Flash of the Blade," two songs I'd love to see in the setlist.
One note -- I am especially thankful for "Rime of the Ancient Mariner;" it came along during Freshman year English class. While the song isn't the whole poem , it contained enough to allow me to quote several passages and pass many a quiz!
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on July 1, 2003
This is a prime example of what every album should be. There is not a weak point on this entire album. It starts off with Aces High, which in my opinion is their greatest opener and one of their best songs ever. With its fast paced drum beat, dueling guitars, and the high pitched wail of Bruce Dickinson, it makes for the perfect opening to this album. Steve Harris bass work as always is incredible, and it can actually be heard which is not true in most metal bands. 2 Minutes to Midnight is a catchy tune with a great chorus which can be stuck in your head for days. Losfer Words is a nice little instrumental which displays the musical talent of each of the members. Flash of the Blade and The Duellists are both great songs, both with incredible guitar harmonies of Dave Murray and Adrian Smith. The title track, Powerslave, is themed in Ancient Egypt during the time of the Pharaohs, and the guitar riff goes great with the theme. Powerslave also has one of the best solos ever. The album closes with the 13 minute epic, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, also another Maiden classic. From beginning to end, this album is flawless.
18 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on August 15, 2005
The year is 1984, and Iron Maiden are boarding a train. Bruce, Adrian, Dave, Steve, Nicko...all aboard? Now it's time to push the pedal to the metal, and don't let up until the album's over. The next stop? A classic, timeless metal album known as "Powerslave."
This English metal band is about as important to heavy metal as Black Sabbath and Metallica. They debuted in 1980, when bands like Ramones and Clash were popular. So, Iron Maiden (and other New Wave of British Heavy Metal bands, like Motorhead and Judas Priest) killed off the uprising of punk, and helped to keep heavy metal alive in the `80's.
"Powerslave" flies by at about the same pace as a Judas Priest record, but there's more to this album than just speed. Like stellar musicianship and super catchy rhythms. Plus, frontman Bruce Dickinson's vocals may be considered by some to be annoying, but I think they help to give Iron Maiden a sound of their own. His famous British-accented upper register usually shines in every song, and he also makes some good vocal hooks.
"Aces High" begins with a chugging riff and stop-start bursts of drums. It then becomes a continuous, running beat, with some of the aforementioned high pitched singing (which sounds similar to Maiden's earlier hit, "Run to the Hills.")
"2 Minutes to Midnight" has another fast, catchy riff and two melodic solos. This song is really a highlight, though, because the chorus is a shout-along (well, almost).
"Losfer Words (Big `Orra)" is a personal favorite, because it's an instrumental. A lot of heavy metal's best albums (i.e. Metallica's "Master of Puppets," etc.) have instrumentals, and not only does "Powerslave" have one, it has a GREAT one. This song features some great guitar work (including a classical sounding solo), and a couple of tempo changes.
"Duellists" is also mostly an instrumental (the middle and most of the end is free of vocals). It also has a fast, chugging riff, two more tasty solos, and a couple more speed changes.
"Powerslave" has mostly galloping riffs. It slows down for the middle, when there are two wailing solos, but it turns back to the galloping beat near the end.
Even though they may not be as relevant now as they were in the 1980's, they have influenced many popular bands (like Metallica), so the spirt of Iron Maiden lives on through them. Plus, even if you don't give them credit for being one of metal's most important and influential bands, "Powerslave" is still a classic, timeless masterpiece which should always have a place in every metalhead's C.D. collection.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on November 19, 1999
This album got some of the most amazing songs I have heard. It starts whit the great "Aces High" that makes u feel like a World War II pilot, then it goes on with a true Maiden classic, 2 minutes to midnight. It is followed by a great instrumental track, Losfer Words, then Flash of the Blade one more good song to remember. The Duellists has a great rhytm, and Back in the Village, altough it's the worse song in the record, still doin' if you hear it with attention. Then comes Powerslave, to me it is one of the best songs written by Dickinson, not a silly song as "Bring your Daughter to the Slaughter" and it to me it beats "Revelations", cause this song have some great riffs, solos, lirics and also the idea is very original. And, Last but not Least, Rime of the Ancient Mariner, one of the best songs Harris has ever write, to me, cause such as Powerslave it has a great history (based on a book, by Coleridge I think) and lirics, a great rhytm and some great melodys. I think this is one of that songs that u just have to put it on, close your eyes and relax, and then u feel something that u cant describe. Sure hope that u can understand my english, once here in Brazil it's not the language and I'm spendin' all I've got here. UP THE IRONS!
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 17, 2005
THE BAND: Steve Harris (bass), Bruce Dickinson (vocals), Dave Murray (guitar), Adrian Smith (guitar), Nicko McBrain (drums).
THE DISC: (1984) 8 tracks clocking in at approximately 51 minutes. This is their 5th album in 5 years. Recorded at Compass Point in Nassau, Bahamas. The disc contains an 18-page booklet with a brief intro, lyrics, band pictures and thank you's. All songs written by Harris and/or Dickinson (with Smith co-writing one). The enhanced CD features a nice multimedia section for your PC - including 2 videos ("Aces High" and "2 Minutes To Midnight"), the band's catalogue of albums, band history, family tree, itinerary from the '84-'85 World Slavery Tour, and more. Digitally remastered in 1998. Cover art by the one and only Derek Riggs.
COMMENTS: It's hard to top this release from Iron Maiden. In my opinion, it sits up on that same lofty shelf with "Number Of The Beast" and "Piece Of Mind". "Powerslave" was Maiden's 3rd monster album in a row and it solidified them as the best metal act of the time. The title track is a classic and it's one of my favorite Dickinson penned tunes, ever. The 13+ minute "Rime Of The Ancient Mariner" is a marathon of a song, and perhaps the band's all-time exemplary magnum opus. "Aces High" and "2 Minutes To Midnight" were two of the band's higher ranking chart hits - and simply fast paced classic Maiden tunes. "Losfer Words" is a hard hitting instrumental (their first since "Genghis Khan" from their "Killers" album in 1981). The only song I give less than a perfect score is "Back In The Village" (a good song, but the least memorable on such a flawless album). I've been to many concerts and one of the stand-outs is Maiden at Radio City Music Hall in NYC (January '85)... 4 sold-out nights in a row (would have been 7 nights had Bruce not been sick). If I'm reaching for some classic old-school longhaired metal, or one of my favorite Iron Maiden albums, "Powerslave" is absolutely one of the first ones I choose. The band was never better than they were here on "Powerslave". Great disc.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on August 5, 2000
Powerslave--The name itself should be compelling enough for just a quick look, but once you get past the initial gaze, be prepared to be blown away. Powerslave is all about power in the songwriting, the guitar riffs, the vocals, the percussion, everything. Maiden's previous two albums, Number of the Beast and Piece of Mind, were very strong as well and Powerslave completes a trilogy of some very fine metal albums.
Though they are a heavy metal outfit, don't think for a second that Iron Maiden can't be intelligent songwriters. And because they are British, they are naturally indebted to their own culture and history as shown in their opening and closing tracks, "Aces High" and "Rime of the Ancient Mariner" repsectively. "Aces High" recalls Britain's finest hour in grandiose Maiden style metal and "Rime of the Ancient Mariner" pays tribute to the great poem of the same name written by Britain's own Samuel Taylor Coleridge which is 14 minutes long.
Their other tracks, most notably "2 Minutes to Midnight" and the title track "Powerslave", all demonstrate Maiden's erudite lyrical qualities, catchy choruses, robust guitar solos, precision drumming and, of course, Steve Harris' marathons on the bass.
Maiden doesn't receive the credit it deserves especially for establishing precedents for the evolution of speed metal, elaborate stage shows, and great quality live performances. Listen to the album straight through (it's hard NOT to do this) and you will see their influence on others at work. This album demonstrates that Iron Maiden can clash fists with any of this so called "new metal" led by lowly underachievers and unintelligent cronies like Limp Bizkit or Korn. And if anyone of these new metal bands believe that they owe nothing to Maiden, then let them get their heads checked. Because much of what goes on today in the metal industry was either established or polished, in full or in part, by Maiden. This album shows Maiden in their prime and how much they did contribute to the overall phenomenon. Their albums, especially this one, are staples for any metalhead. And, as said before, this album encompasses itself around one element--power.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on August 23, 2005
Ah, what's to say that hasn't yet been said? When you look up metal in the dictionary, you'll see Maiden right next to it. And if you don't, then buy a revised copy. This is the definitive sound of everything that ever has been and everything that ever will be metal. Put simply, Maiden are legends, and Powerslave is one of their best efforts. Incredible riffing, mindblowingly complex drumming, killer solos, and that incredible power surge of Bruce Dickinson - this band has a sense of scale, and that scale is big. I can't even try to pick individual highlights, but the last song, the epic "Rime of the Ancient Mariner" is pure genius! Certain parts of that song give me chills like no other. To wrap this short review up (and I know Maiden deserve a longer one), go out, buy Powerslave, crank up the stereo, and have yourself a good time. Really, it can't offer anything less. Not that we'd expect it to anyways.
PS - Sharon Osbourne, her stupid daughter, "Big Dave" and that lame excuse for a band Bury Your Dead can all jump off a bridge for all I care. No one f**** with Maiden and gets away with it! Up the Irons, cuz Ozzfest is now dead!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on March 20, 2006
Powerslave (1984.), Iron Maiden's fifth studio album
By the mid-1980's, Iron Maiden was one of the top metal bands out there and this was further seen in their great fan following. If being on top of the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal scene at the start of the 1980's, with albums such as their self-titled debut and follow up 'Killers' was not enough, the band then made history with the seminal metal classic, 'Number Of The Beast' and then followed it up with the even better (in my opinion) 'Piece Of Mind'. The question was, could this band keep on producing such awesome heavy metal. After a long tour, the band went back to the studio and produced the 'Powerslave' album; their longest work at that point. This album has gone on to be a firm favourite amongst a number of fans but often languishes in the shadow of it's two predecessors. However, is this a fair reflection on the album?
'Powerslave' is in many ways, the last of the straight up metal albums for Iron Maiden in the 1980's, as later releases would explore the bands more progressive side. However for me, this album represents the peak of the band's powers. 'Powerslave' is a monster of an album, featuring blisteringly heavy riffs and consitently great tunes. Also though, more so than previous releases, the album explores more longer and epic songs. In many ways, this is where the album succeeds as these songs are able to keep the listener interested throughout, with plenty of captivating sequences. This is chiefly demonstrated with the title track and the 13 minute epic 'Rime Of The Ancient Mariner', showing the culmination of the band's songwriting ability. The album also features two of the band's greatest singles in 'Ace's High' and 'Two Minutes To Midnight'. Guitarists Adrian Smith and Dave Murray are in blistering form throughout the album, jamming out diverse and varied metal riffs and plenty of great solos, most notably in the 'Powerslave' song. Theres great drumming from Nicko McBrain and Steve Harris shows yet again how well the bass can be played (you could almost describe him as the 3rd guitarist in the band - his bass lines are that impressively dominant in the songs). Bruce Dickenson is well... Bruce Dickenson, vocals legendary as usual.
Not too long ago, the Iron Maiden catalogue got totally remastered and improved. Hence the 1998 remasters are the way to go. The remaster job is great and all of the songs shine through with no sound glitches but also the recent version features and excellent accompanying booklet. The CD itself also has an enchanced multimedia section and you can view video footage of the 'Aces High' and '2 Minutes To Midnight songs from your PC.
The well known opening riff to 'Aces High' gives a classic start to the album. This opener then bursts into top form fast metal from the band. Another song with a World War II theme, which the band are quite fond of in their songs, this is a great start to the song, with the chorus especially the highlight. An even better follow up in '2 Minutes To Midnight'. This is one of the few 6 minute songs that really succeeds as a single. From start to finish, it is an entrancing song with great riffs, fluid bass lines and great vocals. The instrumental 'Losfer Words (Big 'Orra)' is next up. Like most instrumentals, this song is highly underrated. It's another song full of great guitar solos supplemted by a solid bass line. 'Flash Of The Blade', another highly underrated Maiden tune follows. Mellow and deep verse riffs set up a great song and are followed up by another great chorus line. 'Duellists' finishes the first half of the album. This song is mostly instrumental with occasional inspired vocal injections from Bruce Dickenson. The guitar riffs have a heavy but again mellow feel to them, however, it is a style that works very well in this song.
'Back In The Village' opens up the second half of the album. Perhaps the work's weakest track, this song is still no turkey. The song's racy chorus is awesome and the occasional linking guitar riffs are infectiously catchy. However, on this album, the greatest 2 tracks are saved till last. The 7 minute mini-epic 'Powerslave' is the first. The song incorporates Egyptian styled progressions (in tune to the album's cover) which work really well. Bruce Dickenson uses themes of Pharoahs and Gods in what is a great vocal performance on this track. Musically, the song has great chugging riffs and wailing choruses, plus a crazy explosive ending. However the best part of the song is the instrumental part, which has some legendary bass lines from Steve Harris coupled with some killer solos from Murray and Smith. Then, if things couldn't get any better, the 13 minute epic in 'Rime Of The Ancient Mariner'. Some have called this progressive styled song overindulgent (it's Maiden's longest ever song), however there is no doubt in my mind and many others that this is one of the jewels in the crown for the band. Based on a poem by Samuel Coleridge, this epic never loses interest, whether it is in the lengthy verse riffs, the quiet but atmospheric interlude (which features creaking boat sound effects) or during the great harmonised solo section, which is Iron Maiden in full out attack. All in all, an awesome finish to an awesome album.
Many fans of Iron Maiden will say that the band's finest works were 'Number Of The Beast' or 'Piece Of Mind'. Both are excellent, classic efforts however I feel that this album tops them both, chiefly in terms of creativity and sheer power. 'Powerslave' is an album which never has a dull moment and represents the great band at their greatest height. 'Powerslave' is a must for any heavy metal fans collection, this is a perfect demonstration of how metal should be played. Don't miss out!
MY RATING: 10/10; a classic that rises above the rest