This weekend in Mexico City we will have the opportunity to witness the world premiere of a unique and very interesting concept, which rather than clinging to the nostalgia of the glories of the past seeks to revisit what has been built.
On this occasion, two worlds that appear to be opposites touch and meet in order to develop new forms of expression. This is the Minería Symphony Orchestra, in its “Pops” version, which this February 18 will present the Maiden Orchestra concept, that is, a reimagined version of Iron Maiden in a totally symphonic concept.
The idea for this proposal came from Atto Attie, a member of the 24 Cuadros Orchestra and previously a member of the heavy metal band Raxas, who tells us about this new adventure.
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How did the idea of making an Iron Maiden symphonic concept come about?
It comes from those teenage years, when Iron Maiden was my favorite band; I learned to play the bass under the influence of Steve Harris (Iron Maiden bassist) and I always liked classical music. It always seemed very obvious to me that a band like Maiden could take itself into the realm of symphonic music.
“Decades passed and many artists took their concepts to the symphonic realm: Metallica, Deep Purple, El Tri, Cerati, but they didn’t really catch my attention, because at the end of the day it was the band playing. Sonically, although you had the guitars, drums, bass and vocals, in the back you had a string arrangement,” he adds.
“My idea was always that the language was one hundred percent symphonic; On this occasion there will be no band on stage. There will be no guitars, there will be no bass, there will be no drums, and it will be with Minería Pops, that is, the Minería Symphony Orchestra. All executed in a one hundred percent symphonic language. It will be like fifteen Iron Maiden songs…”
What makes Iron Maiden different from other heavy metal bands?
I feel that first is your work ethic. They have been tirelessly traveling the world for 40 years, releasing material, growing and reinventing their fans. There are some very young people, children of chavorrucos like me, who want to take their kids to see the band; I feel that they have also been a very honest band, they have always stuck to the language that they invented. A very galloping, very epic musical language. A language that in many places has to do with the architecture of classical music. Like the double harmonies of the guitars, for example.
“At the end of the day they are already a cult band in Mexico, which is one of the countries that consumes the most metal, and that buys the most from Iron Maiden. I think they are a band that stands apart from other British heavy metal bands. There is Black Sabbath and Judas Priest for example, and apart from that there are the Americans, but Iron Maiden has a special place in the hierarchy of the metal world.”
To give more context to Atto’s words, Iron Maiden came to our country for the first time in 1983, to promote their fourth studio album, the acclaimed Peace of Mindpublished by EMI, which was the label that, together with WEA, most supported the dissemination of metal in Mexico.
Is there a particular song arrangement that you think will really surprise fans?
“Hallowed by your Name” sounds great, “Phantom of the Opera” turned out very well. There are actually very interesting things in each of the different songs; There are also visuals, which is another part of the show’s appeal. Then you have visuals, you have the Mining Symphony playing Maiden’s songs. Yes, it’s definitely going to be a different show and it’s a very interesting cultural crossover. There will surely be metalheads who will want to go to the Sala Nezahualcóyotl on Sundays to follow the season, and conversely, those who go to follow the Minería Symphony will realize that Maiden’s music is worth exploring.”
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Taking advantage of the fact that we talked with you, what’s coming for the 24 Cuadros Orchestra?
We just released an album called Whale Waltzes, are reimagined versions of songs that we really like. They are not covers, they are very different versions of the originals. The idea is to play the new album all this year and prepare new material.