SO, STEVE, TELL US ABOUT YOUR 2016…
“It’s been a bit of a blur, in a way, if I look back on it. Iron Maiden have just done a six-month tour and been to so many different places. It’s been absolutely fantastic with Bruce [Dickinson] flying the plane, and everything else – the whole thing’s unbelievable. It just makes me want more – I’m greedy like that.”
DO ANY MOMENTS OF 2016 STAND OUT IN PARTICULAR?
“Obviously, when the bloody [Ed Force One] engine got slaughtered [in Chile, in March], that was bad news… and that happened on my birthday as well.that was a bit of a birthday present. But our team just rose to the task in a different country, and we were on time for the next gig! That was the most obvious one, because it was such a spanner to be thrown in the works at that time. It’s quite devastating, really, when you get that thrown at you, but an amazing bunch of guys came out and fixed it all, and not so many days later we’re back on it again.”
GIVEN THAT BRUCE’S ILLNESS PREVENTED IT AT FIRST, IT MUST HAVE BEEN SPECIAL TO HAVE FINALLY TAKEN THE BOOK OF SOULS OUT ON TOUR?
“It’s special going out on a Maiden tour anyway – it always is – but when you go through that and you basically get the rug taken out from under you, and you don’t know what’s in the future, it’s extra special for everybody.”
A LOT OF UK FANS’ ONLY CHANCE TO SEE MAIDEN IN 2016 WAS DOWNLOAD. HOW DID YOU ENJOY THAT EXPERIENCE?
“From a personal point of view, I didn’t think it was one of our better performances. Sometimes it’s just like that. But then, sometimes you have a thing like that and everyone thinks it’s great. It’s a different perspective when people are out front. I thought we were good, but I didn’t think we were
great. It was an acceptable performance, but then ‘acceptable’ to me isn’t good enough.that’s why I’m glad we’re doing a UK tour [in 2017]; I feel we still have something to prove.”
FOR THE RECORD, DOWNLOAD WAS ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT. AND THE RAIN WENT AWAY DURING YOUR SET…
“Well, that’s great.we’ve been lucky with things like that.there have been situations in the past where it’s pissing it down all day, then it stops raining when we go on.”
AHEAD OF ITS RELEASE, YOU SAID THE BOOK OF SOULS WOULD BE A LOT TO DIGEST. NOW YOU’VE LIVED WITH IT AND TOURED IT, HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THE RECORD?
“If I’m honest, I was a little surprised by how well it was accepted. I thought we might get a bit of flak because it was too long, or this or that. Obviously, I’m really pleased that the reaction was so good. I didn’t expect that, I thought we would get a bit of grief with it here and there – you know, you can’t please everybody. But in general, it seemed to me that it was received amazingly well. I expected more flak than that, but fantastic, I’ll take that all day long.the reaction we got was incredible.”
FINALLY, ARE THERE ANY GOALS YOU WANT TO ACHIEVE NEXT YEAR OUTSIDE OF MUSIC?
“Well, the last time I tried something I’d wanted to try for years, I injured my knee.that was skiing.two or three years ago I thought,‘the kids are skiing around me and I’m just taking photos’. So I thought,‘sod it! I’m going to have a go!’ I really enjoyed it for the first few days, until I did my cruciate ligaments in my left knee. It took me 18 months before I could play football again. I thought,‘i ain’t doing that again,’ because 18 months without football wasn’t worth it.these aspirations outside of my comfort zone probably aren’t a good idea. I’m not jumping out of a plane or anything like that.”
IT’S SAFE TO SAY THAT IF WE’RE IN FOR A WHITE KERRISTMAS, STEVE WILL BE STAYING FIRMLY INDOORS… “THIS YEAR HAS BEEN A BIT OF A BLUR…” STEVE HARRIS