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Just as we were getting used to Maiden providing us with great B-sides being live versions or rare songs, we are left here with just an original A-side. ‘Twilight Zone’ is a song which originally would have been a regular song on Killers (it can also be found on the American promo 12”) but was omitted eventually.
‘Twilight Zone’ is a mix of Iron Maiden more rock-orientated material such as ‘Drifter’ and ‘Running Free’ with their already crystallised heavy metal sound. Honestly, I always wished they had put this song on Killers instead of that awful ‘Prodigal Son’. The haunting chorus of ‘Twilight Zone’ is true classic Maiden and could have suited any Maiden album.
Now, I can be wrong but wasn’t this single released a month after the release of Killers? If so, I really see no use to include a regular album track as a B-side. A bit of a bummer so the only reason to get this EP is because of the A-side and the cover, which once again is a nice addition to any Derek Riggs’ collection even though the girl’s face and neck are rather masculine.
So 90 points for one great song and artwork, huge deduction for filling up the single with just an album track.
The Twilight Zone is a bonus track on Iron Maiden’s “Killers”. It starts out well with some memorable guitar riffs and speeding up to what implies a catchy piece of metal, but Di’Anno ruins it with some bland singing that sounds more like rambling to me. Then the chorus is just agh! Di’Anno is trying way to hard here. As cheesy as the expression is, he really sounds like he was pinching his balls here! Thankfully, a dark and distorted solo keep this song from falling apart. The song then repeats, aside from finishing at the end of chorus. Di’Anno’s only good moment here is his last “Can’t you see me!!!” at the end; it sounds very tough. Score: 56%
Nicely enough, Wrathchild, a highlight from ”Killers” is also present on this single . Contrary to Twilight Zone, Di’Anno sounds just plain scary with his angry voice. The bass line is one of Maiden’s best, and the rather dirty guitar tone fits everything perfectly. Score: 95%
Considering the “Killers” album now contains both of these songs, and also the rather bad artwork present on this single, you should just get “Killers”. The album contains better artwork, and much more music. Unless you really love this song, I would ignore this release.
One of the things that I don’t like about the constant barrage of new editions of Maiden material is that they are essentially devaluing older singles such as this one. This of course is in addition to the fact that the latest reissue of “Killers” that I’ve encountered has this song as a bonus track, which ruins the flow of what I believe to be the first true heavy metal concept album. It’s not in any way related lyrically to the story implied in the progression of songs; stop fucking around with history you mindless pencil pushers!!
Anyhow, the song featured on this single is short but quite memorable, containing one of the best vocal performances in studio of Paul Di’anno before his voice got all screwed up. The intro riff is a slower version of the low end minimalist riffs that would be found on several early thrash albums, and the general tempo of the song is quite fast when you consider the time it was recorded in. Likewise we find the most well known song off the Killers LP here to round out the fold in “Wrath Child”, a song that has been butchered vocally on a consistent basis since Di’anno left the band.
This is for the consumption of rabid Maiden fan boys with a fetish for rare collectables. Those who don’t have a similarly rabid appreciation for the history of this band are advised to seek out both these songs on the heretical re-issue that has surfaced here in the states in recent years. I own it, I’m proud of owning it, and it’ll be a cold day in hell before I ever part with it.