From Fear to Eternity: The Best of 1990-2010 collects 23 tracks over the span of two discs from the venerable British heavy metal legends. The first anthology to cover the band’s post-halcyon days, it’s remarkable how seamless the transition was. Unlike other acts that left their handprints in the cement in the late '70s and '80s, Iron Maiden never really lost steam, despite a mid-'90s shake-up that saw iconic lead singer Bruce Dickinson swapped out with Wolfsbane vocalist Blaze Bayley for two albums. The addition of keyboards, a controversial, late-'80s move that split some fans upon the releases of Somewhere in Time (1986) and Seventh Son of a Seventh Son (1988), proved largely tasteful and subtle, and did little to hinder their signature blend of fantasy-fueled symphonic metal and straight-up English hard rock. Culled from eight studio albums (including the pair of Bayley offerings), the songs on From Fear to Eternity may not reach the dizzying heights of the band’s Piece of Mind/Number of the Beast heyday, but stand-out cuts like “The Wicker Man,” “Different World,” “Tailgunner,” “Dance of Death,” and “Brave New World” bristle with the energy and conviction of a group 20 years younger. Dickinson's voice is apparently indestructible, and the triple-guitar attack, held down to the mat by the incomparable Steve Harris (founder/bassist), remains a veritable master class in heavy metal picking. It's an impressive feat, to say the least, but what stands out the most is the fact the band has amassed the kind of loyal, age-defying fan base that virtually guarantees a lifetime of sold-out world tours, a feat they managed to pull off without ever selling themselves out.
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AllMusic Review by James Christopher Monger
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2