Adrian Smith - Psycho Spirit Still Burns Bright
By Martin Popoff

"Sometimes you have to kick yourself in the ass to do things. You know, I think Bruce and I have both been on a bit of a journey these last few years."

So speaketh Iron Maiden's Adrian Smith, or more accurately Smith's cheese detector, bought at the same shop Bruce got his. Fact is, while Steve Harris was off writing like a mushroom, a few members of his ingrown fiefdom had the sense to fly the coop and write vital, fresh music. Bruce, is undoubtedly one of those, what with the forever smug satisfied smirk he can now wear, no matter what his official dogtag, due to a string of well-regarded solo albums, with more undoubtedly to come (the man needs a vehicle for grown-ups).

Second enigma would be Adrian Smith, the man leaving Maiden back in early '90, creatively fired by his ASAP solo album, especially the shiny production values, and then swung right down the other way when Maiden had decided to make No Prayer For The Dying a return to a combative, street-level roots metal sound (as Bruce sez, "recorded in a barn."). That was the final er, straw: basically, musical differences, both production-wise as well as due to the fact that Adrian's writing itself was getting more commercial.

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