With the overwhelming success of the current Somewhere Back In Time World Tour 08, and the recent #1 selling DVD Live After Death, which has already gone double-platinum in Canada, EMI are proud to release a very special album on May 13th to chart the first decade of the band's extraordinary career. The album celebrates the essence of the current tour by featuring most of the essential tracks from the band's first seven studio albums and one live album, recorded between 1980 and 1989, and is aptly also entitled Somewhere Back in Time - The Best Of: 1980 - 1989 (full tracklisting below).
In an unprecedented move to let younger fans hear, understand and appreciate the quality of these recordings EMI launch the unique Somewhere Best In Sound, whereby the curious/adventurous can download the entire album without charge from www.ironmaiden.com as a high quality audio file (WMA) which is a typically powerful 320 kbps. Fans will then be able to listen to the entire album at their leisure three times before the download expires. The listener is then given a simple option to upgrade and purchase the album as a full traditional DRM-free download (so they can then copy or do as they like with the album).
Manager Rod Smallwood explains the thinking behind this innovative move:
"Maiden have a huge catalogue that is highly treasured by fans and media alike. However we recognize that our ever-increasing fan base is very young and can't be expected to know all the earlier albums, which is why we have put this collection together for them. Many of our fans weren't even born when the original albums were first released, although amazingly they seem to know all the lyrics when they sing along with the band at our concerts! We also recognize that 'albums' as such have become unfashionable to many over recent years with TV-generated pop artists stringing a couple of 'hit' singles together with filler tracks and releasing them as a quick fill album which disappoints and quickly becomes dated. So this is both an introduction to the band's recording history and a chance for young fans to try a full-length Maiden album and realize they're getting the real deal!
"We wanted to give the kids of today a fair chance of hearing the music as we would have first heard and experienced it in our day when checking it out in a record shop - top quality sound, in their own time and in an environment of their own choosing so they are able to absorb the depth and worth of the music and lyrics that make Iron Maiden the phenomenon they are. What better way to use modern means and a very high quality download! Sadly the WMA (Windows Media Audio) isn't compatible with Macs or iPods but we are confident that our young fans are adept and fluent with modern technology and we will post simple instructions on our website for any that need guidance."
The full tracklisting for the album Somewhere Back in Time - The Best Of: 1980 - 1989 is as follows: 'Churchill Speech', 'Aces High', '2 Minutes To Midnight', 'The Trooper', 'Wasted Years', 'Children Of The Damned', 'The Number Of The Beast', 'Run To The Hills', 'Phantom Of The Opera' (Live), 'The Evil That Men Do', 'Wrathchild - Live', 'Can I Play With Madness', 'Powerslave', 'Hallowed Be Thy Name', 'Iron Maiden' (Live).