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Iron Maiden with Dickinson is THE Iron Maiden. This single (and any other Dickinson era Maiden album) prove this in superb ways. This single contains the mammoth of a song "Run to the Hills", and the lesser known, underrated, "Total Eclipse."
"Run to the Hills", with all it's glory and popularity is without a doubt one of Maiden's best songs (not counting the long songs). It starts out with the famous, instantly recognizable drum beat that gets you read for the ride. The guitars and bass come in with a simple yet catchy riff, followed by Dickinson's singing. The song then picks up pace when the verse starts, and then leads up to the awesome chorus that is a staple of the song. This process repeats once more before the solo kicks in, and then takes away to the chorus again. The song ends with an out tro accompanied by a nice scream by Bruce.
Now the better part of the single (also a better song then RTTH) is "Total Eclipse". It has a very dark atmosphere that suits the song's lyrics well. The riffs are also pretty simple. There is no complex riffing, and there is no over the top technicality that will make you pierce your eyes out from all the confusion. The best bits of the song are when Bruce sings the following lines before the solo:
"Around the world the nations wait for some wise words from their leading light
You know it's not only madmen who listen to fools
'Is this the end?' the millions cried clutching their riches as they died
Those who survive must weather the storm"
and after it:
"Gone are the days when man looked down,
They've taken away his sacred crown
To be so free, it took so long,
It's not the journeys end, it's just begun"
I am also wondering why the band decided to drop this song off the album instead of some other one because it easily beats "Gangland" or "Invaders". This single gives a great taste of what "The Number of the Beast" is about, and also gives us a song that wasn't on the original release. Overall a good single, but if you have the full album, there is no point in listening to this, unless you want to hear "Total Eclipse".