“Death On The Road” (DVD) by Iron Maiden

Artist: Iron Maiden
Title: “Death On The Road”
Label: Sanctuary Records
Release Date: 2006
Genre: Heavy Metal
Rating: 8/10

Full concert films of today’s greatest bands is becoming all the more common these days and Iron Maiden seems to be the band that is leading the trend in releasing a live DVD for every tour that they have completed. We last saw them for “Rock In Rio”, a DVD that showcased the “Brave New World” release and now with “Death On The Road” we find the concert for the “Dance Of Death” album being showcased. The performance was filmed in 2003 and was one of the most theatrical that the band had performed in many years. Being one of the leaders in the Heavy Metal music field the concert itself pulls out all of the stops and finds the band in top shape. This 3 DVD set gives you two versions of the concert itself, one in stereo and one in Dolby. Why this was not set to one DVD with both versions is curious to me but they must have had reasons for doing this. The concert itself is excellent and I don’t think you need me to quantify the level of skill that Iron Maiden possesses on stage. For over 20 years they have been a continual force and a driving one in support of the Metal scene. With “Dance Of Death” we find a strong return to their earlier years in some senses and this tour film features a handful of songs from that album. There is a stronger emphasis on recent material but that is a necessary evil for the band for how interesting will it be to see the same old songs performed on every DVD that gets released. Standout performances on the piece are “Can I Play With Madness”, “Paschendale” and of course the legacy favorites. I don’t think we will ever find a Maiden DVD that does not include “Number Of The Beast” or “Run To The Hills” and if you find yourself annoyed by that just think how Maiden must feel. Songs like this become more of the bands signature and cannot be omitted at this stage of the game. I also felt that at this point in the bands touring that they were used to being a six-member lineup with three axe slingers (Dave Murray, Adrian Smith, and Janick Gers) along with Steve Harris (bass) and Nicko McBrain (drums) and consummate showman Bruce Dickinson (vocals). I like Maiden with this lineup very much and think it works in both the studio and live sense.

Bonus Features: DVD2 is the bonus features portion of the set and lately I am finding myself more critical of a release if these are sub-par. Fortunately Iron Maiden’s rich history and massive resources allow these to be quite interesting. We have a full documentary that takes you from the recording process of “Dance Of Death” all the way up to the preparations for the tour performance we see on the film. Bands need to focus on the team that keep these bands running and lately we have seen this becoming more and more the case. Iron Maiden’s technical crew surely has a lot to handle every night to keep them at the top of their game and in that it is very interesting to see and hear their views on this. We get a great description on how this whole stage is setup from the designers, lighting team and sound crew. Other features include “Life On The Road” which is a second documentary which features road commentary with discussions by band and crew. Photo and artwork galleries as well as videos for “Wildest Dreams” and “Rainmaker”.

Wrapped in a beautiful slipcase the set includes a photo booklet and will sit well among your other Metal DVD’s. I was a lot more impressed with this DVD than the last one even though I also enjoyed it. Iron Maiden while slowing down their touring schedule a little bit due to families still show no sign of stopping what they do. They are one of the best Heavy Metal bands to ever have come about and a DVD like this reminds us of this fact. “Up The Irons!!!”

Track Listing:
1. Intro/Declamation
2. Wildest Dreams
3. Wrathchild
4. Can I Play With Madness
5. The Trooper
6. Dance Of Death
7. Rainmaker
8. Brave New World
9. Paschendale
10. Lord Of The Flies
11. No More Lies
12. Hallowed Be Thy Name
13. Fear Of The Dark
14. Iron Maiden
15. Journeyman
16. The Number Of The Beast
17. Run To The Hills

Official Web site: www.IronMaiden.com

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