Maiden

Winnipeg Free Press - Section G - - ENTERTAINMENT -

has be­come quite a corner­stone of the set. It’s kind of a par­tic­i­pa­tion num­ber and peo­ple seem to re­late to that song. It’s got some­thing about it. It’s one of those songs I en­joy play­ing the most. The other one is Afraid to Shoot Strangers. That wasn’t in the set orig­i­nally and we de­cided to try it out and it does a good job of cre­at­ing good dy­nam­ics in the set, it brings it down. It’s in­ter­est­ing. It’s a nice con­trast to what else is go­ing on. What keeps you go­ing these days? Per­son­ally I’m al­ways striv­ing to get bet­ter. I just re­ally en­joy it. When I was in the band the first time it was all a bit of a whirl­wind; I wouldn’t say we had suc­cess quickly, but once we did start get­ting suc­cess­ful it was el­e­vated very quickly. We were head­lin­ing are­nas and I was only 23, 24 years old. I think I can en­joy it much more now and take it in and re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate it and en­joy ev­ery minute of it, re­ally. Ear­lier this year you re­leased the

al­bum as a side project. How did that come about? That was done over a pe­riod of years, lit­er­ally. I think I started work­ing on it about five years ago. I saw a band called SikTh and Mi­kee Good­man was one of their two singers. They were more of a new style metal band which I was in­ter­ested in: I like the heavy riffs and the power and that sort of mod­ern metal, what­ever you want to call it. I was very ex­cited about the thought of try­ing to in­tro­duce a bit more melody to it. So I got in touch with them and ended up work­ing with Mi­kee writ­ing a cou­ple of songs. The first cou­ple of things we did were quite in­ter­est­ing, he has a very very dif­fer­ent ap­proach to mu­sic than I do. He’s younger than me and prob­a­bly grew up lis­ten­ing to Pan­tera and Korn and these sorts of bands so we pulled each other out of our com­fort zone. The al­bum’s re­ally heavy mu­si­cally and son­i­cally, which is what I wanted to ex­plore. I’ve got my own stu­dio, so I was able to cre­ate these big gui­tar sounds and I played bass on it. I kept it per­sonal. It was a lot of fun to do. I was proud of the way it turned out. Any thoughts about bring­ing some of those gui­tar tones to Iron Maiden? Iron Maiden will never have that kind of gui­tar sound. I play a bit of de­tuned stuff in the Maiden set, but it doesn’t re­ally over­power, it’s just to cre­ate an­other di­men­sion, an­other colour to the sound. If we started tun­ing down it wouldn’t sound like Iron Maiden, so we’ll never have that sound, that re­ally boomy sort of sound. I think Maiden is a unique-sound­ing band, so you don’t want to mess with that, re­ally. Hav­ing said that we did Satel­lite 15 on the last al­bum which is some­thing I did in my stu­dio, which grew out of a Pri­mal Rock thing. I played it to Steve and he took it in a dif­fer­ent di­rec­tion, so that was quite in­ter­est­ing. That wouldn’t have hap­pened if I didn’t have the PRR thing go­ing. What did you think of the doc­u­men­tary Flight 666? I love those guys Sam (Dunn) and Scot (Mc­Fadyen), they were great. They came out on the road with us. I think it was a bit dif­fi­cult for them be­cause it was out­siders com­ing on a very close-knit thing with our band and our crew. We’ve had a lot of the same crew for a long while, so they had to learn to slip and slide be­tween the hec­tic life of a tour like that, but I think they did a good job and it’s nice to have a doc­u­ment of a lit­tle part of your life. I think it was great to see the fans. The au­di­ences down in South Amer­ica are un­be­liev­able. They sure are pas­sion­ate about you. I don’t think they have ma­te­ri­ally as much as a lot of peo­ple down there so mu­sic means a lot to them; mu­sic and football. It’s a real pas­sion, so when they come to the gigs they let it all out. Are there any songs you’re tired of play­ing? Do you have a in your set? We’ve been play­ing 2 Min­utes to Mid­night for a while now but ev­ery night it takes on an en­ergy and peo­ple re­spond to it so that gives you feed­back and you put it right back into the song and it’s great fun to play as well. There’s noth­ing I don’t re­ally en­joy. Even Run to the Hills is good fun to play. It’s all good. There are two tracks on the set list. That al­bum was re­leased af­ter when you weren’t even in the band, so how did those songs make it into the set? Fear of the Dark For peo­ple who saw the show in 1988, how has the stage set evolved? It looks dif­fer­ent from the show I re­mem­ber at the Win­nipeg Arena. It was taken from the al­bum cover, which has a bleak polar land­scape, but now we’re cer­tainly got more py­rotech­nics. It’s in­cred­i­ble. The light show is more so­phis­ti­cated and com­put­er­ized. To be hon­est I think we’re play­ing the songs bet­ter as a band now than we did 20-odd years ago, so all around I think it’s up a cou­ple of notches. What’s the most fun song for you to play these days? I en­joy all of them re­ally. We play Aces High at the end of the set now. In the past we’ve al­ways opened up with it. You’re al­ways work­ing out the kinks in the first song and that was al­ways dif­fi­cult to play as a first song, but play­ing it at this point in the set lets it breathe a bit more and it’s a lot more fun to play than it used to be when we opened up with it. I think ev­ery gui­tarist who has dab­bled in metal has tried to play that one. It’s a lit­tle bit tricky. It’s like a train. If you don’t get a good grip on it at the start you’re li­able to fall off half­way through.

Iron Maiden is play­ing bet­ter now than 20 years ago.

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