The good news is that the new album sounds exactly like Iron Maiden has sounded more or less since their come-back with "Brave New World" in 2000. The bad news is that it's pretty impossible to tell the songs apart. It's a massive 1 hour and a half of only 11 very long songs that more or less sounds like the same song. There is not a single hit or a song you can remember afterwards or even a memorable chorus. That's quite an achievement! Or is it?
I've listened to the 2CD on repeat for some time now, and I must say that this is the weakest of the five Y2K+ albums. After his successful cancer treatment Bruce's voice is still in a fairly good shape and the band plays as well as they always do. But what good does it all do, when it's being used as it is here? I wouldn't exactly call it boring, because they are simply too awesome musicians to ever become that, but it's clearly much too much of much too little.
It's an album like this, that makes you long back to the first two Maiden albums with Paul Di'Anno, where it was all much more to the point and it was all pure punk-metal.
Next time, please shorten it down and try to make something I'll be able to sing-a-long to. I refuse to believe that especially Steve Harris has totally forgotten how to do that. The limited edition 2CD is designed as a little book with great artwork and all lyrics in it. At least that part is done right.