British heavy metal legends IRON MAIDEN have released the "special effects" version of their music video for their latest single, "The Writing On The Wall". The song, which was written by MAIDEN guitarist Adrian Smith and lead singer Bruce Dickinson, produced by Kevin Shirley and co-produced by MAIDEN bassist and founder-member Steve Harris, is taken from IRON MAIDEN's first album in six years, "Senjutsu", which will be released on September 3 via BMG.
Dickinson initially had a concept for the video which came to fruition in collaboration with two award-winning former Pixar executives and long-standing MAIDEN fans Mark Andrews and Andrew Gordon. The pair have over 50 years of animation industry experience between them at the very top-level including work on "The Incredibles", "Ratatouille", "Brave", "Monsters Inc." and "Finding Nemo". With partners lining up to get involved with the project they chose BlinkInk, a London based animation studio celebrated for their work with a variety of global brands from Adidas to Coca-Cola and a number of high-profile music videos.
In BlinkInk director Nicos Livesey, another longtime MAIDEN fan and kindred spirit, they found a man who shared the collective vision for the track — resulting in the final film which features the very first glimpse of a stunning new incarnation of Eddie in spectacular 3D form.
Bruce comments: "I had a pretty clear idea of the concept to accompany the song and when I met Mark and Andrew, on Zoom, it quickly became clear we were all very much on the same wavelength, and this was reinforced with the addition of Nicos and his young BlinkInk team. Our weekly team Zoom meetings were then usually both highly creative and a lot of fun!
"I'm very proud of the way the video turned out. It's more like a mini-film, really. I knew it was going to work out as soon as Mark brought my treatment to life with his incredible storyboards. I thought we could make something very special together. I think we did and hope our fans will agree. In fact, it's pretty much created by MAIDEN fans!!"
Director Nicos Livesey takes up the story: "We quickly found the expertise we wanted, and people were literally throwing themselves at me to work on a MAIDEN video — we had more than 60 people in 13 countries from Brazil to France and Romania to the U.S.A. to add something to the clip and I'd say their love, passion and understanding of the band shines through every frame. They were a dream team for the producers and myself to manage."
The intricate and painstaking process of the making of the video can be read about in more detail here.
For "Senjutsu" — loosely translated as "tactics and strategy" — the band once again enlisted the services of Mark Wilkinson to create the spectacular Samurai themed cover artwork, based on an idea by bassist Steve Harris. With a running time of a little under 82 minutes, "Senjutsu", like their previous record "The Book Of Souls", will be a double CD/Triple vinyl album.
Steve said: "We chose to record at Guillaume Tell Studio in France again as the place has such a relaxed vibe. The setup there is perfect for our needs; the building used to be a cinema and has a really high ceiling so there's a great acoustic sound. We recorded this album in the same way we did 'The Book Of Souls' in that we'd write a song, rehearse it and then put it down together straight away while it was all fresh in our minds. There's some very complex songs on this album which took a lot of hard work to get them exactly as we wanted them to sound, so the process was at times very challenging, but Kevin is great at capturing the essence of the band and I think it was worth the effort! I'm very proud of the result and can't wait for fans to hear it."
Dickinson added: "We're all really excited about this album. We recorded it back in early 2019 during a break in the 'Legacy' tour so we could maximize our touring yet still have a long set up period before release to prepare great album art and something special as a video. Of course, the pandemic delayed things more — so much for the best-laid plans — or should that be 'strategies'!? The songs are very varied, and some of them are quite long. There's also one or two songs which sound pretty different to our usual style, and I think MAIDEN fans will be surprised — in a good way, I hope!"
The full track listing is:
01. Senjutsu (8:20) (Smith/Harris)
02. Stratego (4:59) (Gers/Harris)
03. The Writing On The Wall (6:13) (Smith/Dickinson)
04. Lost In A Lost World (9:31) (Harris)
05. Days Of Future Past (4:03) (Smith/Dickinson)
06. The Time Machine (7:09) (Gers/Harris)
07. Darkest Hour (7:20) (Smith/Dickinson)
08. Death Of The Celts (10:20) (Harris)
09. The Parchment (12:39) (Harris)
10. Hell On Earth (11:19) (Harris)
"Senjutsu" will be released on the following formats:
* Standard 2CD Digipak
* Deluxe 2CD Book Format
* Deluxe heavyweight 180G Triple Black Vinyl
* Special Edition Triple Silver And Black Marble Vinyl (Details to follow)
* Special Edition Triple Red and Black Marble Vinyl (Details to follow)
* Super Deluxe Boxset featuring CD, Blu Ray and Exclusive Memorabilia
* Digital album [streaming and download]