Home Read Albums Of The Week: Bruce Dickinson | The Mandrake Project

Albums Of The Week: Bruce Dickinson | The Mandrake Project

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Renowned around the world as one of the greatest and most distinctive heavy metal vocalists of all time, Bruce Dickinson has just released his long-awaited seventh solo album (and comic book series) The Mandrake Project. The album — Dickinson’s seventh solo album and his first since Tyranny Of Souls in 2005 — sees the long-time Iron Maiden frontman reunited with long-time musical collaborator and producer Roy Z.

“This album has been a very personal journey for me and I am extremely proud of it,” Dickinson explains. “Roy Z and I have been planning, writing and recording it for years, and I am very excited for people to finally hear it. I’m even more excited at the prospect of getting out on the road with this amazing band… to be able to bring it to life. We’re planning to play as many shows as we can in as many places as possible, for as many people as we can!”

Across 10 inventive, expansive and absorbing tracks, Dickinson and Roy Z have created one of 2024’s defining rock albums. Sonically heavy and rich in musical textures, it sees Dickinson bring to life a musical vision long-in-the-making, and features some of the finest vocal performances of his career.

Photo by John McMurtrie.

Recorded largely at L.A.’s Doom Room, with Roy Z serving as both guitarist and bassist, the lineup for The Mandrake Project was rounded out by keyboard maestro Mistheria and drummer Dave Moreno, both of whom also featured on Dickinson’s last solo studio album Tyranny Of Souls.

The Mandrake Project is not just an album, but a dark, adult story of power, abuse and a struggle for identity, set against the backdrop of scientific and occult genius. Created by Dickinson, the accompanying comic series is scripted by Tony Lee and stunningly illustrated by Staz Johnson for Z2 Comics, released as 12 quarterly issues that will be collected into three graphic novels.

Fans of Dickinson and Iron Maiden will notice the album features the track Eternity Has Failed, which first appeared in a different form as If Eternity Should Fail on Maiden’s 2015’s album The Book of Souls, illustrating how long the creative process for The Mandrake Project has been in the works.

Bruce has previously described lead single Afterglow Of Ragnarok as “a heavy song and there’s a great big riff driving it… but there’s also a real melody in the chorus that displays the light and shade that the rest of the album brings.” And the track is brought vividly to life in a cinematic video.”