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We never felt competition: Iron Maiden guitarist Janick Gers

Janick Gers, one of the three guitarists of popular English heavy-metal band Iron Maiden, says they never wanted to follow trends; however, they always planned to move with the times.

music Updated: Sep 03, 2015 22:40 IST
Ruchika Kher
Ruchika Kher
Hindustan Times
Iron Maiden,Band,Heavy Metal
Iron Maiden are an English heavy metal band formed in 1975.

It won’t be wrong to say that Iron Maiden’s music has inspired an entire generation of metalheads. More than 35 years later, the six-piece band, comprising Bruce Dickinson (vocals), Steve Harris (bass), Nicko McBrain (drums), Adrian Smith (guitar), Dave Murray (guitar) and Janick Gers (guitar), continues to enjoy the same fan following it did in the ’70s.

Set to release their 16th studio album, The Book Of Souls, today (September 4), they are hoping it will appeal to both their new and old followers.

“For this album, we wrote a lot of music in the studio (Guillaume Tell Studios in Paris, France, where they had recorded their album, Brave New World, in 2000). It has a theatrical feel, and has a beautiful effect. It was exciting,” says Gers, speaking to us over the phone.

Even though the band’s journey has been no less than a roller-coaster ride, with many members joining and leaving, controversies surrounding some of their tracks, and surviving the ’90s — which proved to be a difficult time for heavy metal bands in general — they bettered their success with each passing year.

“We did what we could do best. You should always be able to carry the audience with you. It’s important to create songs that you can play for new and old listeners, yet be up to date. With every album, we have tried that,” says the musician.

But did they ever feel threatened by competition of any kind considering several other genres and sub-genres have gained prominence over the years? “We never felt competition (sic). We only do what we know, and we try to do that to the best of our abilities. We never feel the need to compete with other kinds of music. We just do what we believe in, and I guess people like that,” he says.

Even though they have been around for more than three decades, they feel there is a lot left to achieve. “The fact that we are still doing this is an achievement in itself. The band has been around for a long time, but we are always trying to do something better. We want to make better music, and do better shows. That’s the goal,” adds Gers.

First Published: Sep 03, 2015 21:28 IST