Based on a completely fictitious character that quite interestingly became a powerful marketing tool for the band, this song may be the weakest on the album. Its release as a single before the album itself has caused some disappointment among a few fans, but it must be said that, as part of the album, it blends perfectly well with the rest of the songs. It has a similar feel to the others and conveys the same sense of gloom and suffering as most of the songs on A Matter Of Life And Death both musically and lyrically. Anyway, being a weak song on such a brilliant album doesn't mean much. This is still an excellent piece.
For weeks after the announcement of the titles of the songs on the official site, everyone has been raking their brain to find out who Benjamin Breeg really was. A website about him even appeared out of the blue supposedly set up by his cousin, a certain "A. Breeg" telling a nice fictional story about this man of mystery (see above). This technique is known as "viral marketing" and consists in exploiting the interrelationships that exist within a community to spread a message through word-of-mouth in pretty much the same way as a viral infection travels from host to host. It is a cheap and very efficient technique that has been used successfully by many companies, but this seems to be the first time that it is employed by a Rock band (once again, Maiden are pioneers). In the present case, the most efficient tool was used: the Internet. Iron Maiden and their marketing people are aware that this medium of communication is extremely powerful (remember that Maiden was one of the first Rock bands to have a website) and made the most of it to make themselves known all over the Web. This gimmick wasn't necessary to promote the name and works of the band, as they have achieved more than their share of fame, but it nonetheless kept the Maiden world-wide community entertained, with the most ludicrous hypotheses about the real identity of Benjamin Breeg emerging here and there from fans with too much time on their hands.
The story is however quite interesting and many parallels can be made between the "life" of Benjamin Breeg, as described on the fake amateur website, and events related to the career of the band and its members (essentially Steve Harris). The following is a little compilation whose source is essentially the www.benjaminbreeg.com fansite and forum: