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The Book of Souls

British metal gods keep raising hell on a wild double album

Iron Maiden

The English heavy metal band Iron Maiden performs a live concert at the Scandinavian heavy metal festival Copenhell in Copenhagen. Here lead vocalist and musician Bruce Dickinson is pictured live on stage. Denmark 11/06 2014. (Photo by: PYMCA/UIG via Getty Images)

PYMCA/UIG via Getty

Metal’s most fanciful band has gilded its 16th LP with the usual tales of kings, battles and foolhardy missions to the sky — but while those topics might sound like old hat, the veteran Brits indulge their whims without ever getting tiresome. Their three guitarists wield an endless arsenal of galloping riffs and wild solos on the singalong-ready “The Red and the Black” and the urgent “Death or Glory.” What’s most impressive is how vocalist Bruce Dickinson, who recently survived a tongue-cancer scare, still sounds like a cross between an air-raid siren and Maria Callas. And tracks like the 18-minute closer, “Empire of the Clouds,” ensure that these guys will never be short on ambition.

In This Article: Iron Maiden

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