Numbers From The Beast - An All Star Tribute To Iron Maiden
Restless Records
Heavy Metal
11 songs ()
Release year: 2005
Reviewed by Jason

Let’s face it, there aren’t many of us that would go out and spend our hard earned cash for a tribute CD that is riled with bands we’ve never heard of and massacre classics for 70 minutes. Based on my experience with these kinds of releases, Tribute CD’s tend to have 1 or 2 well known acts covering awesome tracks meant to tingle people’s interests, while the rest of the disc is filled with bands no one’s ever heard of that play lackluster renditions of songs you’d prefer to hear performed from their original artist. Though some people don’t enjoy the idea of covering music, I think that a good cover track here and there doesn’t hurt since it’s kind of cool to hear a classic redone by a good band with their particular style. It’s a darn shame to have to buy an album when all you want is to occasionally hear a cover or two out of curiosity, but once in a blue moon there comes a tribute CD that is done the right way and is actually worthy of a purchase, and Numbers from the Beast is one of those rare moons. A good tribute CD, in my mind, is one done by well known, talented artists and puts a nice spin on the music without transforming it into something too “over the top” or so boring that you ask yourself why the heck this band covered the track in the first place. Numbers From The Beast is on of those tributes that is “done right”; it was recorded by over 45 of top-notch artists from all facets of metal who collaborated to simply make awesome covers of some of the best Iron Maiden tracks ever recorded. Some of the names appearing on this album are the current and/or ex-members of bands like: Billy Idol, Dokken, Twisted Sister, Testament, Anthrax, Iced Earth, Whitesnake, Dio, AC/DC, Styx, Motorhead, Malmsteen, Deep Purple…and the list goes on, and really, who can really ask for more in terms of killer musicians. The 11 tracks span through nearly the entire Maiden discography and even include a version of The Wickerman off the Brave New World album done by members of Anthrax, Armored Saint, and Rob Zombie, along with a few other prominent artists. Though virtually every track one would expect to be on a Maiden tribute album is present, the only track I expected to be there and which isn’t Hallowed be Thy Name.

Virtually all the tracks on this album are done extremely well apart from a few exceptions here and there. For example, the musicianship and ripping solo at the beginning of The Evil That Men Do makes this one of my favorite tracks on the album, but what hinders this song from being absolutely killer are the vocals done by WWE wrestler Chris Jericho. Though his singing isn’t abysmal, they definitely don’t compare to the vocals of Jeff Soto (Malmsteen/Soul Circus) who sings for Aces High on this same disc. Same goes for Fear of the Dark, which even though has a killer line-up, doesn’t manage pay tribute to the song since the signature riff at the beginning of the tune sounds too down-tuned and the vocals sung by Chuck Billy (Testament) are too raspy. This tribute album certainly isn’t perfect but Tracks like The Trooper, sung by Lemmy from Motorhead, or Flight of Icarus, sung by Tim “Ripper” Owens, makes this one hell disc. Even original Maiden vocalist Paul Di’Anno is featured on this disc and even after 20 some-odd years later is still able sing Wrathchild with the same energy and quality as it was recorded in the old days.

There’s a lot that can be said about this tribute album but I’ll stop here so that you may discover this disc on your own. The all-star line up is truly impressive and the long list of artists that redo these classic Maiden tunes do it in a way that truly pays respect to band. To all Maiden fans: this is one tribute album worth buying.
Killing Songs :
The Trooper, Wasted Years, Aces High, 2 Minutes to Midnight, Wrath Child, The Evil That Men Do
Jason quoted no quote
1 readers voted
You did not vote yet.
Vote now

There are 20 replies to this review. Last one on Fri Jan 06, 2006 6:11 pm
View and Post comments