Saturday, February 19, 2011

Songs From Poems: Rime of the Ancient Mariner

Iron Maiden: Rime of the Ancient Mariner


Enough with these namby-pamby singer-songwriters, Star Makers. Let's rock!

Back when we did Discoveries week, I shared a photo of my mid-'80s college dorm room. Featured prominently on the wall was a poster for Iron Maiden's Powerslave album. I was quite the metalhead at the time, and Iron Maiden were in the upper echelons of my personal metal pantheon.

Iron Maiden's musical interpretation of Samuel Taylor Coleridge's epic was originally released on Powerslave in 1984, but I prefer this live version from the following year's Live After Death, one of the best live albums in the history of heavy metal.

More than twenty-five years later, I don't find myself listening to most of the metal I grew up on. But Iron Maiden, I can still listen to without--pardon the pun--irony. Their prog-rock arrangements always set them apart from their 80's hair-metal contemporaries, and for some reason Steve Harris' galloping bass lines never fail to get my blood pumping.

So carve out thirteen minutes of your life, put on your headband and tight trousers, and rock out! But remember my dear Star Makers, we're not as young as we used to be. Please practice safe headbanging.

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