Saturday, March 28, 2015

Iron Maiden - Flight Of Icarus

We have posted many acts on ERV that were (are) one hit wonders, often with the caveat that there is no shame in having only one top 40 hit.  Case in point: Iron Maiden, who scored exactly zero charting singles in the U.S. (Yes, that makes them a no hit wonder, I suppose.)

"Flight of Icarus" is a retelling of the Greek myth of Icarus, although in the Iron Maiden version, Icarus' father (Daedalus) betrays Icarus by encouraging him to fly too close to the sun.  (In the original version, Daedalus warns Icarus not to fly too high, but the boy doesn't listen, with disastrous consequences).

The song works on a number of levels, and is helped by the mythological theme.  Maiden cultivated a fantasy-driven image, which was strengthened by singer Bruce Dickinson's lyrics.  [As an aside, Dickinson is an interesting person with expertise in fencing, aviation, writing, and broadcasting; these varied interests have resulted in at least once source naming him as a polymath.]

Directed by Jim Yukich, the video brings these darker elements to the fore, which are contrasted with the band playing the song in a studio.  While the song was not a huge hit, the Piece of Mind LP reached #14 in the U.S. (#3 in the U.K) and went platinum in both geographies.

The band would remain heavy metal stars through the early 1990's, and remain together (with some personnel changes along the way) to the present day.

Another Maiden classic, 1982's "The Number of the Beast" was featured on ERV's first All Hallow's Even celebration in 2011.

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