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piece of change

Piece of Mind

Piece of Mind is the fourth studio album by British heavy metal band Iron Maiden. It was originally released in 1983 (see 1983 in music) on EMI, and on Capitol in the US; it was reissued later on Sanctuary/Columbia Records. It was the first album to feature drummer Nicko McBrain, who had recently left the Paris-based band Trust.

"The Trooper" remains as one of the most popular songs in the band's history, and has been included in the set list of all of the band's concert tours since the album's release. During the Blaze Bayley era, it was used as the closing song for the lineup's tours.

Two songs were covered for the 2008 tribute album Maiden Heaven: A Tribute to Iron Maiden; they were "The Trooper" and "To Tame a Land".

History

Lyrically, the album reflected the group's interest in books and film. For example, "To Tame a Land" is based on Frank Herbert's novel Dune. "The Trooper" is inspired by Tennyson's Charge of the Light Brigade. "Still Life" is inspired by fantasy/horror writer Clark Ashton Smith's pre-World War II short story Genius Loci. Other inspirations include "Where Eagles Dare", a film, and a novel by Alistair MacLean; "Quest for Fire", based on the film by Jean-Jacques Annaud; the writer G. K. Chesterton who is quoted at the beginning of "Revelations". More exotic influences include Greek mythology, albeit slightly altered for "Flight of Icarus", and samurai legend Miyamoto Musashi ("Sun and Steel"). Aleister Crowley influenced a good piece of the remaining lyrics of "Revelations," which was written by Dickinson.

This is the first Maiden album that was not named after a song featured on the album itself (though the words "peace of mind" appear prominently in the album's sixth song, "Still Life"). In its earliest phase the album was named Food for Thought but was changed so it would suit the artwork more. The name of the last track was meant to be "Dune," but Frank Herbert, who disliked heavy rock bands, denied permission to use his book's name and thus a new name had to be chosen.

Included in the liner notes is a slightly altered version of a passage from the Book of Revelation. As printed in the liner notes, it reads:

"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more Death. Neither sorrow, nor crying. Neither shall there be any more brain; for the former things are passed away."

The actual text (from Chapter 21, Verse 4) is nearly identical, except that it says "neither shall there be any more pain..." . This change can be seen either as a reference to the album's name, or the removal of Eddie's brain on the cover, or to drummer Nicko McBrain's inception into the band for this album.

World Piece Tour was the tour supporting the album.

The album ranked 21 on IGN's list of the top 25 metal albums.

Hidden message

At the beginning of the sixth track, Still Life the band included a hidden message which could only be understood by playing the album backwards. This was a joke and an intended swing back at the critics who had accused Maiden of being satanic. The backwards-message features Nicko McBrain mimicking Idi Amin (or rather mimicking John Bird mimicking Idi Amin) uttering the following phrase "What ho said the t'ing with the three "bonce", do not meddle with things you don't understand...", followed by a belch. The phrase itself is taken from the satirical album The Colleckerted [sic] Broadcasts of Idi Amin by Bird and Alan Coren. "What ho" and "What ho said the t'ing" are phrases that also crop up regularly on McBrain's "Listen With Nicko!" tracks from the First Ten Years collection.

Track listing

  1. "Where Eagles Dare" (Steve Harris) – 6:10
  2. "Revelations" (Bruce Dickinson) – 6:48
  3. "Flight of Icarus" (Dickinson, Adrian Smith) – 3:51
  4. "Die With Your Boots On" (Dickinson, Smith, Harris) – 5:28
  5. "The Trooper" (Harris) – 4:15
  6. "Still Life" (Dave Murray, Harris) – 4:53
  7. "Quest for Fire" (Harris) – 3:41
  8. "Sun and Steel" (Dickinson, Smith) – 3:26
  9. "To Tame a Land" (Harris) – 7:27

1995 reissue bonus CD

  1. "I Got the Fire" (Montrose cover)
  2. "Cross-Eyed Mary" (Jethro Tull cover)

Chart performance

Album

Year Chart Position
1983 UK Albums Chart 3
Pop Albums 14
Billboard Hot 200 70

Singles

Year Single Chart Position Album
1983 "Flight of Icarus" UK Singles Chart 11 "Piece of Mind"
"Flight of Icarus" Mainstream Rock Tracks 8
"The Trooper" UK Singles Chart 12
"The Trooper" Mainstream Rock Tracks 28
1990 "Flight of Icarus" UK Singles Chart 7 "The First Ten Years"
2005 "The Trooper" (live) Canadian Singles Chart 5 "Death on the Road"
"The Trooper" (live) Greece 9
"The Trooper" (live) Spain 1
"The Trooper" (live) Sweden 5
"The Trooper" (live) Switzerland 61

Certifications

Country Certification Sales/shipments Year
US 1x Platinum 1,000,000+ 1986
UK 1x Platinum 300,000+ 1995
Canada 2x Platinum 200,000+ 2006
Germany Gold 250,000+ 1996
Finland Gold 25,000+ 1990
Spain Gold 50,000+ 1983

Personnel

References

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