During an appearance on SiriusXM's "Trunk Nation Virtual Invasion", IRON MAIDEN singer Bruce Dickinson was asked why he and his bandmates keep going back to producer Kevin Shirley album after album, including the group's latest effort, "Senjutsu". Bruce said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Kevin's a very good producer; he's a very good, knowledgeable, technical producer. But we are difficult to work with. I haven't worked with that many bands, but I've worked with a fair number of musicians, and I know in general how people tend to work. Nobody works like we do. We are definitely a one-off. The way things get put together, all the funny little protocols, the little politics within the band. Not in a bad way — this is just the way it works. I imagine it's kind of the same in THE ROLLING STONES. I imagine THE ROLLING STONES, it's not like working with anybody else. It's, like, 'What are they doing now?' They always do that on Thursday. And they've done it for 45 years; that's what they do on a Thursday, and nobody interferes with that. And it's the same with us; we have all these little eccentricities. I don't think we could work any other way."
He continued: "I do albums — obviously, I've done solo albums and things, working with [producer/guitarist] Roy [Z] and some great musicians, and you work in a more kind of traditional way. And Adrian's [Smith, MAIDEN guitarist] done records and worked in a more traditional way. But we, as a band, need to get together and play in a big room and actually make a lot of noise and do… I mean, it's old-school stuff. And when people say, 'You're kind of like dinosaur rock,' I'm, like, 'Yeah. Yeah. It's good.' And that's not a bad thing. How many dinosaurs are there left in the world? If you're gonna be a dinosaur, you wanna be a [Tyrannosaurus] rex. What do you feed a T. rex? Anything it wants. And it's kind of like that with being a producer of IRON MAIDEN — you're part of the team but you've gotta play by our rules. And there's a lot of producers that couldn't cope. Not that they're incapable of doing stuff, but they would rapidly come up against a brick wall with some of our opinions and practices in the studio."
"Senjutsu" marks MAIDEN's sixth album to be produced by Shirley, who has worked with MAIDEN for the past two decades.
In addition to MAIDEN, Shirley has collaborated with dozens of notable acts, including Joe Bonamassa, JOURNEY, DREAM THEATER and LED ZEPPELIN.
Back in 1983, Dickinson told Canadian writer Steve Newton that it would be "unthinkable" for IRON MAIDEN to make an album without producer Martin Birch, who had helmed the previous "Killers" and "The Number Of The Beast" LPs. Birch retired in 1992 after co-producing MAIDEN's "Fear Of The Dark" with bassist Steve Harris.
"Senjutsu" is being released today (Friday, September 3) via BMG.