Album review: Bruce Dickinson – The Mandrake Project

Bruce Dickinson has released solo album The Mandrake Project.

It’s undeniable that Bruce Dickinson is an icon when it comes rock and metal music. Having one most distinctive voices, and a career spanning 40+ years, it’s safe to describe him as one of the most successful metal singers in the world.  

He’s just released his latest album, The Mandrake Album, which contains ten tracks with some-what varied sound of sound. It ventures into an almost gothic style of music, to a folky ambience, and some (dare I say) cowboy music. For the most part, it’s for fans of classic rock and metal. It’s loud, fast and with lyrics that tell all kinds of stories, and full of epic guitar solos.  

As good as each song is, Resurrection Man is where my attention was brought in. Yes, because of the Western sound to it. It was something different to hear. Though my attention was lost again towards the end as it continued to sound repetitive.  

 I have two worries with this album. The first is that it’s too alike everything else we’ve heard. And the second, is that, sometimes he holds notes beautifully, and there are times it feels strained. I don’t want to tell Bruce Dickinson how to do his job, he has plenty of experience. I would tell him, if I could, to consider the vocal range he has now – as it will be different to in the 80s. I’d say that to protect his voice as there are some artists (Rod Stewart) who no longer have their voice from stretching it too far, and I do think Bruce is very talented.  

Maybe this album isn’t for me. As much as I do enjoy classic rock, it’s not my go-to genre. I feel like a die-hard fan would love The Mandrake Project, which is out now to buy and stream. 

Vicki Evans

April 3, 2024

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