Iron Maiden and Al Gore?

I saw Iron Maiden this weekend. Those are my fingers at the concert, in case you don’t believe me.

Why I went to Iron Maiden is not as interesting as what I experienced at Iron Maiden. About mid-way through the show, the band launched into their 13-minute epic “Rime of the Ancient Mariner.” Early in the song, the captain slays an albatross, a traditional harbinger of good fortune, and suffers the consequences:

The albatross begins with its vengeance
A terrible curse a thirst has begun
His shipmates blame bad luck on the mariner
About his neck, the dead bird is hung.

What was weird, aside from a metal band retelling a Coleridge poem, was to hear Bruce Dickinson, the lead singer, introduce the song by referencing Al Gore and the need to care for the planet.

Just to be sure I wasn’t imagining things, I checked the reviews later in the weekend and indeed, someone else heard the Al Gore reference.

Prior to the show, I couldn’t have named a single Iron Maiden song, but as I read in on them (see this bizarre but illuminating NRO review from 2004) I’m intrigued.

Now, With all the smoke pots firing and amps blaring, I don’t get the sense that Iron Maiden is going to win any awards from Reverb but I’m intrigued. Intrigued too by the penultimate stanza of the Rime:

The Mariner’s bound to tell of his story,
To tell his tale wherever he goes,
To teach God’s word by his own example,
That we must love all things that God made.

Maybe the Al Gore reference makes sense after all.

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