GO­ING IT ALONE

The pick of Dick­in­son’s solo songs.

Classic Rock - - LIVVING THE HIGH FIVE -

DRAC­ULA

Nei­ther one of his great­est songs nor even re­ally a solo num­ber, this creaky slice of Ham­mer Hor­ror heavy metal by long-for­got­ten Lon­don band Shots war­rants in­clu­sion as Dick­in­son’s very first record­ing. A cu­rio, but one that pointed to greater things.

SON OF A GUN

The Dick­in­son solo ca­reer got off to a fly­ing start with the glo­ri­ous open­ing track of his de­but solo al­bum, Tat­tooed Mil­lion­aire. A brood­ing take­down of reli­gious im­pe­ri­al­ism, it’s one of the finest things he’s writ­ten, with or with­out Maiden.

TAT­TOOED MIL­LION­AIRE

The al­bum it­self was a stylis­tic grab-bag, but Tat­tooed Mil­lion­aire’s ti­tle track was a brash pop-metal gem with shades of Def Lep­pard’s Pho­to­graph. Who was it about? Our money’s on Nikki Sixx…

TEARS OF THE DRAGON

Dick­in­son’s first post-Maiden al­bum, 1994’s Balls To Pi­casso, was di­rec­tion­less and un­mem­o­rable, but it did pro­duce this bel­ter, fea­tur­ing prob­a­bly his best vo­cal per­for­mance since Maiden’s Hal­lowed Be Thy Name.

OC­TAVIA

1996’s Skunkworks was the sound of a man try­ing to rein­vent him­self for the mod­ern era. It largely fell flat, but it threw up a few lost trea­sures, in­clud­ing this mini-clas­sic.

ROAD TO HELL

Dick­in­son’s re­union with Adrian Smith on 1997’s Ac­ci­dent Of Birth found him re­con­nect­ing with clas­sic heavy metal and brought Iron Maiden’s great­est song­writ­ing team back to­gether. With this gal­lop­ing an­them, they wrote the best

Maiden sin­gle of the 1990s.

MAN OF SOR­ROWS

Dick­in­son doesn’t do bal­lads, but when it comes to stately epics, few can touch him, as this Aleis­ter Crow­ley-in­spired slow-burner from Ac­ci­dent Of Birth proves.

THE CHEM­I­CAL WED­DING

1998’s The Chem­i­cal Wed­ding was in­spired by painter, poet and vi­sion­ary Wil­liam Blake, and the soar­ing ti­tle track flew on the wings of the an­gels Blake once vi­su­alised.

JERUSALEM

Blake’s iconic poem (and English rugby an­them) was the song Dick­in­son was born to sing. In his hands, it’s turned into some­thing new: part mys­ti­cal trea­tise, part Celtic metal drink­ing an­them.

NAV­I­GATE THE SEAS OF THE SUN

Bruce’s feet were back un­der the Maiden ta­ble by the time of 2005’s Tyranny Of Souls, but he’d kept some clas­sic tunes for him­self, in­clud­ing this slice of part-acous­tic, psychedel­i­cally tinged in­ter­stel­lar bril­liance that sounded like noth­ing he’d writ­ten be­fore.

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