Spitfire making Maiden voyage
FLAMETHROWERS, a giant Spitfire warplane and a flying Icarus – Iron Maiden don’t do live shows by halves.
The heavy metal veterans are heading back to the NEC for their Legacy of the Beast tour and fans can expect another incredible spectacle on Tuesday.
Inspired by the band’s mobile game and comic book of the same name, the set design will transform the stage into a number of different, interlocking worlds as they delve into their Eighties back catalogue – with a handful of surprises from later albums thrown in.
There’s plenty to go at: since their self-titled debut in 1980 the band have released 16 albums – topping the charts with five of them, including their latest offering The Book of Souls in 2015 – and amassing album sales of more than 100m worldwide.
The band have spent nearly four decades honing their live shows, and have toured relentlessly since lead singer Bruce Dickinson and guitarist Adrian Smith rejoined the group in 1999.
The Spitfire will buzz over the stage during the opening number Aces High. The plane is a 90 per cent sized replica of an actual Supermarine Spitfire Mk Vb registration number AA 853 from 302 Squadron that saw active duty in 1941.
Says singer Bruce: ‘‘We would have made it actual size but we had to cut it down by 10 per cent to fit on some of the festival stages, otherwise it’s an exact replica of arguably the greatest plane design ever, in fact one of the best designed machines ever!’’
But this is certainly not the only show-stopping effect, with pyrotechnics, special effects and new incarnations of mascot Eddie. The production and set list were inspired by the Maiden free to play mobile game Legacy of the Beast which is available on iOS and Android platforms.
“For this History/Hits tour we decided to base the theme around the Legacy Of The Beast name, which suits our purposes perfectly by giving us scope to get creative and have some fun, especially with Eddie,’’ added Bruce.
Since the opening night of the tour in Estonia at the end of May, the band have already played to around 750,000 fans in sold-out stadium, arena and festival shows across Europe, including selling out the prestigious Atletico Madrid football stadium in Spain.