IRON MAIDEN’S NICKO MCBRAIN ON ‘FLIGHT 666’ DVD AND PLANS FOR A NEW ALBUM
June 4, 2009
Kory Grow of Revolver Magazine recently conducted an interview with Iron Maiden drummer Nicko McBrain. When asked about a new Iron Maiden album McBrain stated, “We start working on a new record in November. We’ve got November and the first couple of weeks of December booked into writing. We’re gonna do a new album in January 2010, and we should tour with that in late summer, fall time. That’s the plan.”
The idea that metal legends Iron Maiden, a band who has built a loyal fanbase with little help from radio and TV over the past three decades, would tour the world in its own airplane came easily. What has since become the setting of a new documentary about the band and its tour, Iron Maiden: Flight 666, the Film (Banger/UMe), came as a spark of inspiration sometime during the group’s Death on the Road tour, circa 2005. The band was discussing all the cities in the world to where they’d like to travel. Frontman Bruce Dickinson said (here, in the words of drummer Nicko McBrain), “Well, we need our own bloody jet airliner, don’t we?” After the group agreed, they worked out the logistics–including Dickinson, an accomplished pilot in his private life, electing himself to fly the plane–and it wasn’t soon after that that they were boarding a 757 dubbed “Ed Force One” to cruise the world. “We were like, ‘We don’t have to pay for a captain!'” McBrain says. “Like, did we not realize that we still had to pay him to fly the freakin’ thing. [Laughs]”
At the insistence of their manager, Rod Smallwood, Iron Maiden hired Canadian filmmakers Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen, who previously worked together on the documentaries Metal: A Headbanger’s Journey and Global Metal, to film the tour 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The documentarians took full advantage of having unprecedented access to the band members, who are notorious for rarely opening up their private lives, for some candid sequences, as well as the opportunity to connect with the group’s fans. The band didn’t always take kindly to the observation, but it paid off. “There was a time when I wanted to kick the guys off the plane at 35,000 feet,” McBrain says. “I said, ‘See that exit over there? I’m gonna open that door and I will throw your camera out, and you’re gonna be following it.’ It was wonderful in the end, though.” The film, which is out Tuesday on DVD, will air on VH1 Classic and Palladia on Saturday, June 6, at 9 p.m. EST., and also on regular VH1, Saturday at midnight (technically Sunday, June 7). Looking at the process of making the film now, McBrain says he’s happy with the results.
The entire Nicko McBrain interview can be viewed at http://www.revolvermag.com/node/3320.