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Release date: 2 October 1995
Style: Heavy metal

Rating:

6.9 | 932 votes

Owners:

1060 have it
46 want it
2 trade it


Disc I
01. Sign Of The Cross
02. Lord Of The Flies
03. Man On The Edge
04. Fortunes Of War
05. Look For The Truth
06. The Aftermath
07. Judgement Of Heaven
08. Blood On The World's Hands
09. The Edge Of Darkness
10. 2 A.M.
11. The Unbeliever

Disc II [Japanese Release]
01. Justice Of The Peace
02. I Live My Way
03. Judgement Day

Reviews (2)
Lyrics (11)


Line-up
Bayley Alexander Cooke - vocals
Janick Robert Gers - guitars
David Michael "Dave" Murray - guitars
Michael Henry McBrain - drums
Stephen Percy Harris - bass

Additional musicians
Michael Kenney - keyboards

Gregorian chants by The Xpresion Choir.


Additional info
Produced and mixed by Steve harris and Nigel Green.

The 2CD Japanese edition of this album contains a bonus disc containing three b-sides from 'The X Factor' recording sessions. This release is quite rare due to the fact it is currently the only place where the track 'I Live My Way' can be found in CD format. Although the track was previously released beforehand as the b-side on the 'Man On The Edge' picture-disc single.

Guest review by
Spyroid

Rating:
5.5
Every fan of Iron Maiden knows the story about the "The X Factor" album - out with Dickinson, one of the best metal singers of all time, and in with Blaze Bayley, an unknown stranger with a voice very far from Dickinsons. And what the hell would that result in? Well, when I heard this album for the first time I had very low expectations, I had the expectation that this was Iron Maiden's worst album. But I was really surprised by the epic and experimenting opener, and the next two tracks were also really good apart from the vocals which wasn't bad but not near Dickinson. I began to believe I really liked 'The X Factor', but when the I came to the end of the last track, my mind had made an 180-degrees-turn.

Read more ››
published 29.07.2008 | Comments (28)

Guest review by
Papa_Ray

Rating:
8.8
Well, this is the one. The X Factor, Iron Maiden's tenth studio album, is probably the most controversial record they have ever put to tape. Yes, this was the first album not to feature the thunderous vocals of Bruce Dickinson since Killers way back in 1981. Outrage swirled about when the announcement was made, and before long the band drafted in former Wolfsbane singer Blaze Bayley to fill Dickinson's epic shoes. Bayley sported a lower voice that resembled almost nothing to the sound Dickinson had supplied the band for seven studio releases. It is well known that this is the first of two records Iron Maiden created with Blaze Bayley singing. What a lot of people don't seem to realize, however, is that The X Factor breathed new life into a legendary band that had previously released two underwhelming subpar albums with its larger than life lead singer.

Read more ››
published 23.08.2010 | Comments (40)

Found in 36 lists
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Comments

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Comments: 29  
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CHINO0097 - 27.03.2011 at 21:03  
  Not a very good album but it's OK.
Troy Killjoy - 27.03.2011 at 21:22  
  I wouldn't even call it OK really. Maybe a 4/10 on a good day.
RavenKing - 27.03.2011 at 23:44  
 
Written by Troy Killjoy on 27.03.2011 at 21:22

I wouldn't even call it OK really. Maybe a 4/10 on a good day.


I will keep it as short as possible: this album is utter crap.
Yasmine - 27.03.2011 at 23:48  
Rating: 4 I could've been worse though,4.
Vikcen - 26.05.2011 at 18:10  
Rating: 10 Umm, by the way is better the other cover, mola más =)

Troy Killjoy - 26.05.2011 at 19:36  
  Despite the alternate cover art, the music still sucks.
R'Vannith - 27.05.2011 at 03:48  
Rating: 7 Quite a boring album, but it has its redeeming qualities.
eyeofthebeholder - 22.08.2011 at 19:16  
Rating: 7 Very boring in some moments and enjoyable in others.rating: 7/10
Aristarchos - 11.07.2012 at 10:39  
Rating: 9 Very underrated. I can't see why everybody hate this album. It's probably my fifth favourite with Maiden. I know Steve Harris loves this album too. I love this darker side of Maiden, especially I love "Judgement Of Heaven".
Ralle - 08.10.2012 at 20:58  
Rating: 9 So underrated album.
Blaze did a good job.
Vikcen - 10.10.2012 at 22:37  
Rating: 10
Written by Ralle on 08.10.2012 at 20:58

So underrated album.
Blaze did a good job.


Without doubt
Dentura - 12.11.2012 at 21:51  
Rating: 8 I don't understand all the hate behind this album. Sure it's a different singer with a different voice, but so what? I'll admit it took me a while to get into Bayley's voice, but once I did, this album really started to shine very nicely. Blaze has actually hit much higher (almost Rob Halford style) notes than what he hits here (check out the very end of his Alive In Poland performance of "Tough as Steel" and you'll see what I mean. ). All-in-all, this is in my opinion the strongest 1990s Maiden album.
Bad English - 01.03.2013 at 00:19  
Rating: 5 Maybe Blaze came in wright time, even his vox are week, so low , but its good and well 2 albums whit IM and they make him star, IM make him to what he is nowdays, no IM who knows Wolfsbane .... hardly fiew of you , now he is a big name, sellinmg more thanks to IM ....this album is OK, lil sad and nostalig because no more Bruce, no more siren, we knw now he came back, but those days fans didnt .... well I dont say this si let dawn at all
Jaeryd - 02.04.2013 at 14:00  
Rating: 5 I can't decide whether to rate this album a 6, because there's nothing particularly annoying or bad about it, or a 5 because it's so "meh" and boring that it sucks.
Azarath - 03.04.2013 at 21:15  
Rating: 8 It doesn't sound like any other Maiden album. That's a good thing.

Written by Dentura on 12.11.2012 at 21:51

All-in-all, this is in my opinion the strongest 1990s Maiden album.

I agree.
mikeprado30 - 24.06.2014 at 07:45  
Rating: 7 The less good IM album IMHO. Anyway is a nice experiment with new elements for the band's sound. But the songwriting could be better (that is proven in Virtual XI, that was better IMHO).

Has boring parts and nice parts (from The Aftermath the album gets better).

Sign of the Cross is nice but I insist, could be better.
terrorist - 07.12.2014 at 19:31  
Rating: 10 Great melodies, great lyrics, diffrent vocals but very good, and the darkness which other maiden albums don''t have is absolute fantatstic.
Bad English - 26.07.2015 at 20:39  
Rating: 5
Written by deadone on 24.06.2014 at 08:05

Just listened to this one yesterday. I have never been able to fully get into it and yesterday was no exception.


Lack of energy and overall gutless sound don't help. Some songs would've worked ar better if they had been sped up.


if Bruce be on vocals?
I like this, I wish Doogie would do one album whit Maiden actually, but Blaze was right person
Leonidas - 25.09.2015 at 00:23  
  Just because it's different than usual maiden albums doesn't mean it's a bad album.

In my humble opinion through my twenty+ year course through metal music I'd say it's one of the most dark and vivid emotional 90's heavy metal album. Such strong and inner feelings and thoughts can overwhelm you through the lyrics and the atmospheric music even after so many years.
One of the most unique I'd dare to say albums of Iron Maiden with the most emblematic song being The Sign of the Cross. Try to listen to the album with an open mind and you'll know what I mean.

"Hold on for something better
That just drags you through the dirt
Do you just let go or carry on and try to take the hurt"
Lit. - 25.09.2015 at 02:44  
 
Written by Leonidas on 25.09.2015 at 00:23

Try to listen to the album with an open mind and you'll know what I mean.

Well, listening to it with an open mind is why I think it sucks. It's simply not a good album. If I listened to it with a closed-mind, I'd probably think it's the best thing since sliced bread like every other mindless Maiden fanboy.
Marcel Hubregtse - 25.09.2015 at 06:36  
 
Written by Leonidas on 25.09.2015 at 00:23


In my humble opinion through my twenty+ year course through metal music I'd say it's one of the most dark and vivid emotional 90's heavy metal.





By saying that about this album I'd say you only started listening to metal a couple of months ago.
Leonidas - 25.09.2015 at 23:48  
 
Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 25.09.2015 at 06:36

Written by Leonidas on 25.09.2015 at 00:23


In my humble opinion through my twenty+ year course through metal music I'd say it's one of the most dark and vivid emotional 90's heavy metal.





By saying that about this album I'd say you only started listening to metal a couple of months ago.


And by your answer I'd say you are like 12 years old or 13 maybe??? Real mature response and pretty strong forensics you got there dude....
Vikcen - 27.09.2015 at 01:49  
Rating: 10
Written by Leonidas on 25.09.2015 at 23:48

Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 25.09.2015 at 06:36

Written by Leonidas on 25.09.2015 at 00:23


In my humble opinion through my twenty+ year course through metal music I'd say it's one of the most dark and vivid emotional 90's heavy metal.





By saying that about this album I'd say you only started listening to metal a couple of months ago.


And by your answer I'd say you are like 12 years old or 13 maybe??? Real mature response and pretty strong forensics you got there dude....


You are right, 12 or 13 years old, more or less.
Lord_Regnier - 22.10.2015 at 04:27  
 
Written by mikeprado30 on 24.06.2014 at 07:45

The less good IM album IMHO. Anyway is a nice experiment with new elements for the band's sound. But the songwriting could be better (that is proven in Virtual XI, that was better IMHO).


Songwriting and "Virtual XI" don't belong to the same sentence, unless you believe that repeating the same stupid chorus 20 times in half the songs is something that can be called 'songwriting'.
Hellthunder - 03.02.2016 at 00:21  
Rating: 6 Blaze's awful vocals ruin much of it, but it has some really great compositions.
Lord_Regnier - 03.02.2016 at 01:05  
 
Written by Leonidas on 25.09.2015 at 00:23

Just because it's different than usual maiden albums doesn't mean it's a bad album.


Agreed. It's not a bad album because it's different.
It's a bad album because the music sucks.
dark2711 - 03.02.2016 at 14:44  
  Definitely not my favourite album by the band, but I loved it when it first came out and listened to it loads back then. Though I don't play it that much these days I do still enjoy it when I have it on. First three tracks in particular are very good and stand up compared with what the band has released in recent years.

I really like the Aftermath, remember learning it on guitar when I was first starting out. While I enjoy all the other tracks with the exception of Edge of Darkness & The Unbeliever, the former sounds like it is trying to steal from Hallowed Be Thy Name, while I just find the intro from the later irritating. Have the singles, so own the b-sides, but you can tell when listening to them why they didn't make the album, as not as good, but in saying that they are worth having in my music collection.

Went to see them on that tour and was great to witness the band in a venue that holds less than 2,000 people. Blaze was great in the moment though if you went back and scrutinized the vocals they didn't hold up that well on some of the material he was asked to sing. Always was a mystery to me why they didn't introduce more Di'anno material into the set that he could have sung more comfortably.
CakeTrolley - 17.07.2016 at 18:45  
Rating: 10 I has ever since I got this album had strong feelings for it. I never understood the hate for it, I think all the songs here are extremely well written both musically and lyrically. Sure there are some weaker parts, for example the chorus in "Fortunes of War" is pretty dull and "Man on The Edge" isn't really on par with the rest of the tracks. But then we look at the highlights. "The Edge of Darkness" truly feel as a soundtrack to Apocalypse Now, dark and thrilling (When you've faced the heart of darkness, Even your soul begins to bend). When they pick up the speed in "Judgment of Heaven" and we get one of Steve Harris best lyrics (If you could live your life again, Would you change a thing or leave it all the same?) then we have one of the most underrated Maiden songs ever. "Sign of the Cross" with it's really exciting instrumental section (4:40-10:00) is so close to perfection as music gets, it's without any doubt their best song exceeding the 10 minute mark. And then of course the solo section in "The Unbeliever" (from 3:35) does in every way challenge the Powerslave solo part. Overwhelming stuff.
Just as Somewhere In Time, Seventh Son and AMOLAD they managed to capture a tight atmosphere that connects all the songs and they all feel a part of a entirety. Even the three songs that got left out of the ordinary release is fucking fantastic. This one deserves nothing less than full rating.
tominator - Today at 01:05  
Rating: 8 Best 90s Maiden album imho.

Nothing really bad on this album (like for example The Angel And The Gambler on Virtual XI, Weekend Warrior on Fear Of The Dark or Hooks In You on No Prayer For The Dying). Some tracks are forgettable (I'm personally thinking of Man On The Edge, Look For The Truth and 2 A.M.). Some ok songs like The Aftermath and Fortunes Of War.

But all the other songs I really like. Judgement Of heaven (some really good riffs and lyrics in that song), Blood On the World's Hand (that base intro!), The Edge Of Darkness and Lord Of The Flies have excellent lyrics as well. And Sign Of The Cross... well that song is just amazing in every way.

As for Blazes voice. I like it on this album. Would it have worked with Bruce on it? Definitely, I even think a lot of people wouldn't dislike this album as much if that were the case. But I honestly think that with the darker tone of the album, Blazes voice works perfectly well.

Overall does this album compete with the 80s output and most of the 2000s output? No not imo, but damn this album has some amazing tracks and for me personally it easily blows Fear Of the Dark (yeah I just said that), No Prayer For The Dying and Virtual XI out of the water.

7.5/10

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