REVIEW: Iron Maiden – Revenge Is Living In the Past (2006 live bootleg CD)

Part two of a two-part series on live bootlegs. For part one, click here!

IRON MAIDEN –  Revenge Is Living In the Past (2006 live bootleg CD, The Godfatherecords)

Astute metal fans know that there have been couple very special Iron Maiden tours of late that were not commemorated with a live album. That’s shocking considering how many live albums Maiden’s done since reuniting with Bruce and Adrian in 1999 (four). The one I had been seeking the most was the Matter of Life and Death tour. On that tour, Maiden played every song from that excellent album in sequence. Some moaned and complained about the shows being loaded top-heavy with an album 70 minutes in length. Those people did not appreciate what they were witnessing, which was the only time you were going to be hearing most of these songs live. And what great songs they are. I am on record with A Matter of Life and Death being among my favourite Iron Maiden albums.

Then, at the Toronto Musical Collectibles Record & CD Sale 2014, I found it: A soundboard recorded double CD from Stockholm, November 18 2006. This was the second of two nights at the Globe arena. (They would return to Stockholm again a week later on the 25th!) I do not pay money for “burned” (CD-R) bootlegs, and one vendor had hundreds of beautifully packaged, factory pressed live bootlegs. They had many from this label, The Godfatherecords, all in lovely digipacks. I paid $40, the most I paid for any single item at the CD show. This was well below the $60 that I paid 15 years ago for the awful Virtual Lights Strikes Over France, also by Iron Maiden. I think $40 was a fair price for a double bootleg CD of this quality.

MAIDEN REVENGE_0006

How does a live performance of A Matter of Life and Death hold up?  Remarkably well!  In fact there was only one song that I felt didn’t work well, which was “The Longest Day”.  It’s a great song on album, but live, Bruce’s vocal is more erratic.  Still, it is hard to be critical since this is but a blip in the course of the CD.  The songs are remarkably album-accurate otherwise, with Steve and Adrian providing backing vocals where needed.

“Different World” is a brilliant opener, and the crowd is immediately fired up.  Also well received was the single “The Reincarnation of Benjamin Breeg”.  At the conclusion of A Matter of Life and Death, Maiden break into “Fear of the Dark,” and the crowd sings along to every word, as they often do.  The set closes with classics:  “Iron Maiden,” “2 Minutes to Midnight,” “The Evil That Men Do,” and “Hallowed Be Thy Name”.  All brilliant of course.  It is good to have an excellent sounding commemoration of this tour.  I had never really understood why Iron Maiden did not release their own official CD.  That’s why the world needs bootleggers.

The Godfatherecords generously filled out the second CD with four songs from another very special show:  Rome, October 27 1981.  Why is that special?  It was only Bruce Dickinson’s second show with the band!  Ever!  Paul Di’Anno’s final show was only a couple weeks prior, on the 10th.   From this show, we get “Iron Maiden,” “Transylvania” (what a bizarre song to include since it’s instrumental), “Drifter” and “Prowler”.  I don’t think I have a copy of Bruce singing “Drifter” on anything else I own!

The sound quality is not that great, as expected.  The lineup then was Bruce Dickinson, Steve Harris, Dave Murray, Adrian Smith, and Clive Burr.  Immediately obvious is that the band were playing much faster back then, and Bruce’s range was greater.  It’s very cool to hear Steve Harris himself do the song introduction on “Transylvania”!  I don’t think I’ve ever hear him speak so much on stage before.  (He also introduces “Prowler” with Bruce.)   And Bruce singing “Drifter”?  Very different.  The audience “Yo yo yo yo’s!” along to Bruce, but it sure sounds weird to hear anybody but Paul Di’Anno doing it.

This is a great CD, and if you happen upon it, I recommend you add it to your collection.

4.5/5 stars

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21 comments

  1. Cool purchase Mike….
    This is one of those Maiden albums now that tend to get overlooked after the Powerslave and 7th son reincarnated tours of 2006 and 2012,
    This is i think there best studio release since 7th Son!
    And for some reason it flies under the radar …and once again I gotta go & dig this one up.
    It’s cool u tracked this bad down….packaging everything looks mint…..
    Great read….
    I laughed when u mentioned Bruce’s yo yo yo’s…..he gives er that as well on the Beast Over Hammersmith where he also blasts the suits at EMI sitting up in the balconys……
    Hahahaha….

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    1. Thanks man!

      I think it’s the best studio release of the reunited band…probably the best one since 7th Son too…maybe even earlier. 7th Son is great but they have a better sonic quality now, especially with the 3 guitars!

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      1. I was pretty relieved when I first heard it cause I was worried they were going to be on a slide after Dance of Death. Didn’t like it that much. I think Matter and Final Frontier are two of the best albums they’ve put out.

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        1. Can’t argue with that. I don’t know of any band who have created art with this kind of quality and frequency at this stage of their careers. They can release all the live albums they want — they’re entitled to.

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  2. I used to buy boots back in my callow youth but then I discovered tape trading and off I went!

    Is the ’06 show soundboard quality?

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  3. This is my favorite Maiden live recording… ever! Only after I heard this, I realized how great a record AMOLAD actually is – but the sound of this live show is so much better than that somewhat sterile sound of the studio album. Much recommended – so don’t hesitate when you see a copy. It is available on eBay for reasonable prices every now and then…

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    1. Hey Metal Meepy, thanks for posting! It’s good to hear from someone else who’s heard this.

      I don’t much the sound of the studio album but I get what you mean by “sterile”. I’ve read that the album was a lot of first takes, and that they didn’t master it, so perhaps that impacts the sterility?

      Regardless I second what you said, don’t hesitate!

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      1. Indeed, the lack of mastering hurts the sound quality of the AMOLAD studio recording a lot – which to me feels ‘sterile’ and not ‘full’.

        As an aside: Godfather does a great job selecting the best available live recordings – and the packaging is always stunning. I am in the lucky possession of all Maiden releases by Godfather so far: 8 double CDs + 5 single CDs + 2 box sets of 3 double CDs each. I frequently listen to all – possibly with one exception: ‘Fiery The Angels Fell’ off the Somewhere in Time tour, because there are also the better and more extensive alternatives ‘Living in the Golden Years’ and ‘Out in the Night The Fires Burn’ (box-set double CD).

        You must be able to appreciate audience recordings, though, as most are of that type. Especially the Di’Anno era recordings are great (note that ‘Remember Nagoya’ comes in two different packagings), and so are the after-2000 ones (2 or 3 of these are sounboard recordings). Like I said: this ‘Revenge is Living in the Past’ is my favorite of all, also taking into account all official Maiden live releases. $40 (or 30€) is a common price for the double CDs, although you certainly may be able to find them cheaper (esp. in Italy, where I assume these are being made, or otherwise on eBay).

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        1. Thanks for the detailed info on those Maiden bootlegs!

          I personally love a good audience recording. I’ve said in the past that I prefer the Kiss “club tour” bootleg Unholy Kisses to Alive III. It’s just a loud, sweaty bootleg. And I love at the start of “100,000 Years” when an audience member can be heard saying, “I don’t believe it. I do not fucking believe it!”

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  4. Personally I’d like a live album of the Ed Hunter tour. Best set list of any maiden tour in my opinion. We know there are recordings, man on the edge was released on from fear to eternity and I think Killers and some others are available as B sides

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank god for bootleggers. with the benefit of hindsight I think that the Maiden England tour of 2014 was a more appropriate place to play a whole album. As for my previous comment I forgot I wrote that one so the one I wrote on the Ed Hunter review is almost identical. Imagine my surprise reading this one and thinking “wait when did I write this? Did I write this?”. Do you mind if we become friends on Facebook? I feel Messenger would be a more efficient way to discuss things as opposed to commenting back and forth.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes go ahead but be forewarned I can still take a while to respond.

      I don’t know if I mentioned this but at one time a friend of mine had a VHS copy of the Ed Hunter show in Toronto. So I have seen and heard that.

      However. Adrian Smith was unable to appear due to the death of his father. So what Toronto saw was the five piece lineup from Fear of the Dark at that show.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. An interesting point is that Maiden planned to officially release their Download 2007 appearance but it was cancelled for some reason.

      Looking back at that Facebook request, there was more to it than just ease of discussion. I though you were a really cool guy and I wanted to get to know you better, but I wasn’t able to fully put that into words back then

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Yeah they were done with the full album. The live stream of it is on YouTube (which may explain its cancellation)

          I also heard that Donington 2014 was recorded and then cancelled.

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