Best of the Beast

Best of the Beast was Iron Maiden's first "best of" album,[4] released in 1996 in three formats: a 34 track (four disc) vinyl, a 27 track (two disc) CD, a 16 track (single disc) CD and MiniDisc. The vinyl edition is, to date, the band's longest record release, running for over three hours.

Best of the Beast
Best of the Beast.png
Compilation album by
Released23 September 1996
Recorded1978–1996
GenreHeavy metal
Length77:53 (single disc CD)[1]
149:40 (2-disc CD)
189:17 (4-disc LP)
LabelEMI
ProducerMartin Birch, Nigel Green, Steve Harris, Iron Maiden, Will Malone
Iron Maiden compilations chronology
Best of the Beast
(1996)
Ed Hunter
(1999)
Singles from Best of the Beast
  1. "Virus"
    Released: 2 September 1996
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[2]
Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal7/10[3]

BackgroundEdit

The track listings are mainly made up of the band's greatest hits (singles) and most well-known songs from their 1980–1995 albums, but they also include a new single, entitled "Virus",[4] and an unreleased live version of "Afraid to Shoot Strangers". Both songs had promotional music videos, the latter of which was filmed during The X Factour and originally featured the band's previous lead vocalist, Bruce Dickinson.

The two-CD version contains two songs from the band's 1979 demo tape The Soundhouse Tapes ("Iron Maiden" and "Strange World," of which the latter was previously unreleased).[4] The 4-disc vinyl pressing is quite rare and has increased in value steadily over the years in music stores and on online auction sites. The standard edition's value has not changed much although the Japanese pressings continue to rise in value. Best of the Beast has long since been out of print and has been "replaced" by Edward the Great in most countries as a 'best of' for the band.[5]

The cover art was designed by Derek Riggs, known for having created most of Iron Maiden's early album covers. It is an amalgamation of his most famous works with the band, featuring Eddies from the Piece of Mind, Powerslave, Somewhere in Time and No Prayer for the Dying eras, as well as those from "The Trooper", Live After Death and a redesign of the Killers album cover.[6]

Track listingEdit

Standard edition CD and MDEdit

No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
1."The Number of the Beast"Steve Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast4:49
2."Can I Play With Madness"Adrian Smith, Bruce Dickinson, Harris1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son3:31
3."Fear of the Dark" (Live in Helsinki, Finland 1992)Harris1993 ~ A Real Live One (1992 ~ Fear of the Dark)7:21
4."Run to the Hills"Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast3:50
5."Bring Your Daughter... to the Slaughter"Dickinson1990 ~ No Prayer for the Dying4:44
6."The Evil That Men Do"Smith, Dickinson, Harris1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son4:35
7."Aces High"Harris1984 ~ Powerslave4:31
8."Be Quick or Be Dead"Dickinson, Janick Gers1992 ~ Fear of the Dark3:21
9."2 Minutes to Midnight"Smith, Dickinson1984 ~ Powerslave6:04
10."Man on the Edge"Blaze Bayley, Gers1995 ~ The X Factor4:18
11."Virus"Harris, Gers, Dave Murray, BayleyNew Track6:30
12."Running Free" (Live in Long Beach, USA 1985)Harris, Paul Di'Anno1985 ~ Live After Death (1980 ~ Iron Maiden)3:25
13."Wasted Years"Smith1986 ~ Somewhere in Time5:06
14."The Clairvoyant"Harris1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son4:27
15."The Trooper"Harris1983 ~ Piece of Mind4:11
16."Hallowed Be Thy Name"Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast7:10
Total length:77:53

Limited edition CDEdit

Disc One
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
1."Virus"Harris, Gers, Murray, BayleyNew Track6:30
2."Sign of the Cross"Harris1995 ~ The X Factor11:17
3."Man on the Edge"Bayley, Gers1995 ~ The X Factor4:18
4."Afraid to Shoot Strangers" (Live in Gothenburg, Sweden 1995)HarrisPreviously Unreleased (1992 ~ Fear of the Dark)6:48
5."Be Quick or Be Dead"Dickinson, Gers1992 ~ Fear of the Dark3:21
6."Fear of the Dark" (Live at Helsinki, Finland 1992)Harris1993 ~ A Real Live One7:21
7."Bring Your Daughter... to the Slaughter"Dickinson1990 ~ No Prayer for the Dying4:44
8."Holy Smoke"Harris, Dickinson1990 ~ No Prayer for the Dying3:49
9."The Clairvoyant"Harris1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son4:27
10."Can I Play With Madness"Smith, Dickinson, Harris1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son3:31
11."The Evil That Men Do"Smith, Dickinson, Harris1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son4:35
12."Heaven Can Wait"Harris1986 ~ Somewhere in Time7:24
13."Wasted Years"Smith1986 ~ Somewhere in Time5:06
Disc Two
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
1."Rime of the Ancient Mariner" (Live in Long Beach, USA 1985)Harris1985 ~ Live After Death (1984 ~ Powerslave)13:10
2."Running Free" (Live in Long Beach, USA 1985)Harris, Di'Anno1985 ~ Live After Death (1980 ~ Iron Maiden)3:25
3."2 Minutes to Midnight"Smith, Dickinson1984 ~ Powerslave6:04
4."Aces High"Harris1984 ~ Powerslave4:31
5."Where Eagles Dare"Harris1983 ~ Piece of Mind6:10
6."The Trooper"Harris1983 ~ Piece of Mind4:11
7."The Number of the Beast"Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast4:49
8."Run to the Hills"Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast3:50
9."Hallowed Be Thy Name"Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast7:10
10."Wrathchild"Harris1981 ~ Killers2:54
11."Phantom of the Opera"Harris1980 ~ Iron Maiden7:20
12."Sanctuary"Harris, Murray, Di'Anno1980 ~ Iron Maiden3:13
13."Strange World" (Unreleased Recording for The Soundhouse Tapes)HarrisPreviously Unreleased (1980 ~ Iron Maiden)5:45
14."Iron Maiden"Harris1979 ~ The Soundhouse Tapes (1980 ~ Iron Maiden)3:57
Total length:149:40

Limited edition vinyl[7]Edit

Side A
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
1."Virus"Harris, Gers, Murray, BayleyNew Track6:30
2."Sign of the Cross"Harris1995 ~ The X Factor11:17
3."Afraid to Shoot Strangers" (Live in Gothenburg, Sweden 1995)HarrisPreviously Unreleased (1992 ~ Fear of the Dark)6:40
Side B
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
4."Man on the Edge"Bayley, Gers1995 ~ The X Factor4:18
5."Be Quick or Be Dead"Dickinson, Gers1992 ~ Fear of the Dark3:21
6."Fear of the Dark" (Live in Helsinki, Finland 1992)Harris1993 ~ A Real Live One (1992 ~ Fear of the Dark)7:21
7."Holy Smoke"Harris, Dickinson1990 ~ No Prayer for the Dying3:49
8."Bring Your Daughter... to the Slaughter"Dickinson1990 ~ No Prayer for the Dying4:44
Side C
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
1."Seventh Son of a Seventh Son"Harris1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son9:54
2."Can I Play With Madness"Dickinson, Harris, Smith1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son3:31
3."The Evil That Men Do"Smith, Dickinson, Harris1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son4:35
4."The Clairvoyant"Harris1988 ~ Seventh Son of a Seventh Son4:27
Side D
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
5."Heaven Can Wait"Harris1986 ~ Somewhere in Time7:24
6."Wasted Years"Smith1986 ~ Somewhere in Time5:06
7."2 Minutes to Midnight"Smith, Dickinson1984 ~ Powerslave6:04
8."Running Free" (Live in Long Beach, USA 1985)Harris, Di'Anno1985 ~ Live After Death (1980 ~ Iron Maiden)3:25
Side E
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
1."Rime of the Ancient Mariner" (Live in Long Beach, USA 1985)Harris1985 ~ Live After Death (1984 ~ Powerslave)13:10
2."Aces High"Harris1984 ~ Powerslave4:31
3."Where Eagles Dare"Harris1983 ~ Piece of Mind6:10
4."The Trooper"Harris1983 ~ Piece of Mind4:11
Side F
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
5."The Number of the Beast"Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast4:49
6."Revelations" (Live in Westfalenhallen, Germany 1983)DickinsonPreviously Unreleased (1983 ~ Piece of Mind)6:11
7."The Prisoner"Smith, Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast6:00
8."Run to the Hills"Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast3:50
9."Hallowed Be Thy Name"Harris1982 ~ The Number of the Beast7:10
Side G
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
1."Wrathchild"Harris1981 ~ Killers2:54
2."Killers"Di'Anno, Harris1981 ~ Killers5:01
3."Remember Tomorrow"Di'Anno, Harris1980 ~ Iron Maiden5:27
4."Phantom of the Opera"Harris1980 ~ Iron Maiden7:20
5."Sanctuary"Iron Maiden1980 ~ Iron Maiden3:13
Side H
No.TitleWriter(s)Original AlbumLength
6."Prowler"Harris1979 ~ The Soundhouse Tapes (1980 ~ Iron Maiden)4:17
7."Invasion"Harris1979 ~ The Soundhouse Tapes (1980 ~ Women in Uniform)2:55
8."Strange World" (Unreleased Recording for The Soundhouse Tapes)HarrisPreviously Unreleased (1980 ~ Iron Maiden)5:45
9."Iron Maiden"Harris1979 ~ The Soundhouse Tapes (1980 ~ Iron Maiden)3:57
Total length:189:17

Chart performanceEdit

CertificationsEdit

Region Certification Certified units/sales
Argentina (CAPIF)[22] Platinum 60,000^
Brazil (Pro-Música Brasil)[23] Gold 100,000*
Finland (Musiikkituottajat)[24] Gold 22,261[24]
Sweden (GLF)[25] Platinum 100,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[26] Gold 100,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Best of the Beast (Media notes). Iron Maiden. EMI. 23 September 1996.CS1 maint: others (link)
  2. ^ Prato, Greg. Iron Maiden-Best of the Beast at AllMusic. Retrieved 23 June 2011.
  3. ^ Popoff, Martin (1 August 2007). The Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal: Volume 3: The Nineties. Burlington, Ontario, Canada: Collector's Guide Publishing. p. 213. ISBN 978-1-894959-62-9.
  4. ^ a b c Wall, Mick (2004). Iron Maiden: Run to the Hills, the Authorised Biography (3rd ed.). Sanctuary Publishing. p. 316. ISBN 1-86074-542-3.
  5. ^ Wall, Mick (2004). Iron Maiden: Run to the Hills, the Authorised Biography (3rd ed.). Sanctuary Publishing. p. 365. ISBN 1-86074-542-3.
  6. ^ "Best of the Beast". Derek Riggs. Archived from the original on 17 May 2010. Retrieved 23 September 2011.
  7. ^ "Iron Maiden - Best of the Beast (Vinyl, LP) at Discogs". Discogs. Retrieved 27 February 2016.
  8. ^ "Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast (album)". Ö3 Austria Top 40 (in German). Austriancharts.at. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  9. ^ "Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast" (in Dutch). Ultratop. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  10. ^ "Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast" (in French). Ultratop. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  11. ^ "Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast (album)". The Official Finnish Charts. Finnishcharts.com. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  12. ^ "Iron Maiden- Longplay-Chartverfolgung". Media Control Charts (in German). Musicline.de. Archived from the original on 17 October 2012. Retrieved 21 October 2011.
  13. ^ アイアン・メイデン – ベスト・オブ・ビースト (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved 21 October 2011.
  14. ^ a b "Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast (album)". MegaCharts (in Dutch). Dutchcharts.nl. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  15. ^ "Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast (album)". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. charts.nz. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  16. ^ "Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast (album)". Sverigetopplistan. Swedishcharts.com. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  17. ^ "Official UK Albums Archive 5 October 1996". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 21 October 2011.
  18. ^ "Iron Maiden – 'Virus' (nummer)". MegaCharts (in Dutch). Dutchcharts.nl. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  19. ^ "Iron Maiden – 'Virus' (song)". Finland's Official List. Finnishcharts.com. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  20. ^ "Iron Maiden – 'Virus' (song)". Sverigetopplistan. Swedishcharts.com. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  21. ^ "Official UK Singles Archive 21 September 1996". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 21 October 2011.
  22. ^ "Argentinian album certifications – Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast". Argentine Chamber of Phonograms and Videograms Producers. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  23. ^ "Brazilian album certifications – Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast" (in Portuguese). Associação Brasileira dos Produtores de Discos. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  24. ^ a b "Iron Maiden" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  25. ^ "Guld- och Platinacertifikat − År 2001" (PDF) (in Swedish). IFPI Sweden. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  26. ^ "British album certifications – Iron Maiden – Best of the Beast". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 29 April 2013. Select albums in the Format field. Select Gold in the Certification field. Type Best of the Beast in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.