Just some news I picked up about the album at BraveWords.com
Taking a long break from all things Maiden, Bruce Dickinson has put the final touches on The Best Of Bruce Dickinson, which for initial pressings, will include a second CD of rarities.
Bruce reflects on the well-regarded solo canon so far, specifically the extra satisfactions he can glean from this process versus work with Maiden. "I think the ability to exercise doubt, right? Because there tends to be a certainty in Maiden, which is a product of personalities within the band. There does tend to be a certainty within Maiden, and part of it is the confidence as well, that Maiden fans are Maiden fans through and through and in general will buy more or less everything that the band puts out, as long as they've done it sincerely. So this breeds a certain sense of self-confidence that no matter what you do, it's going to be right. With my solo stuff, I have no such confidence at all. You feel that there is sort of no safety net underneath you. If you're trying to do something that is different, it can either be slightly worrying or very exhilarating. Your choice. That's one of the main differences."
Besides offering 13 odds 'n' sods (including the infamous 'I'm In A Band With An Italian Drummer'), the album includes two brand new tracks, 'Silver Wings' and 'Broken' being attached to CD1. Bruce offers this comment on 'Silver Wings'. "Roy Z and I were playing around with old demos, and I had heard this backing track that we had and said, 'that sounds like Maiden, 1985 style.' And he said 'yeah, yeah, yeah.' And I said 'go on, I'll write some lyrics and I'll put a tune to it.' So I did, and we all just had a hoot putting the demo down, and we were laughing and drinking beer and I said, 'come on, let's put it on the record.' And he said, 'no, we can't do that; we'll get in trouble' (laughs). And I said 'no we won't, I'll take it to London and I'll see what everybody thinks about it before we do anything.' So I played them this thing and I said to Rod Smallwood, Maiden's manager 'what do you think, man?' And he said, 'I think it sounds fantastic!' So I said, 'so we can put it on the record then?' And he said 'oh yeah!' And so Silver Wings is pretty much Iron Maiden 'Aces High'-style, done by me and Roy. And the other track, 'Broken', was conceived, I suppose as a fairly catchy four-minute song done along the lines of Chemical Wedding."
There's also a track called 'The Wicker Man', which Bruce says "isn't an alternate version, it's a completely different song. The original title for the Iron Maiden 'Wicker Man' song was going to be 'Your Time Will Come' and nobody was really that keen on that title. Steve then had picked out of a line I had written, 'The shadow over the wicker man is rising up again', and said, 'wow, why don't we call it 'The Wicker Man'?' At which point I said, 'oh man, it's going to be 'Bring Your Daughter To The Slaughter' all over again, but then I said wait, OK, I see, it does make sense, because 'The Wicker Man' gave us a cover, it gave us a look to the album, it gave us a stage show, all from this movie. So it was a good choice, a good decision. But the song that appears on my album, on CD2, is a completely different song, written and recorded at the time of Accident Of Birth."
Thoughts now turn to the follow-up to the classic and universally beloved Chemical Wedding record. Bruce wouldn't comment on lyrical or musical direction, adding that "the plans are to do it as soon as I can get a hold of Roy and dig him out of the bunker he's in with Rob Halford, making his new album (laughs). Then early next year, we'll start. And late next year, we'll do a record with Maiden, and then tour Maiden in 2003."
Any touring planned at all as Bruce Dickinson? "No, even if there was a big demand, I have no band at the moment (laughs). They are scattered to the four winds..."