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his fast-paced song musically reminiscent of 'Aces High' is an excellent album and concert opener. The opening riff and Nicko's precise hammering are the signs that the Iron Maiden of the Golden Era is back. The song itself has a quick tempo, with heavier parts and rhythm changes typical of Maiden, and Adrian Smith does a great solo.

The lyrics seem to highlight the general apathy of our modern society and our egoistic disinterest in what is happening in the world until something actually happens to us and we get "knocked to our feet". Watching "the world explode every single night" refers probably to those who watch the evening news and who have an overload of grisly images of wars and sufferings, and who become gradually de-sensitised and de-humanised.

This selfishness is further portrayed by the refusal to pay the "ferryman", most probably Charon, who according to the Greek mythology was ferrying the souls of the recently departed across the river Acheron, and not the Styx as many may think, from the land of the living to that of the dead incidentally, Styx was the name of Bruce's very first band (nothing to do with the famous American rock band, though). The image seems once again to emphasize the fact that the modern world is more and more inhabited by zombies whose feelings are either dead or dying.
The symbol of the new rise of the wickerman, a figure of paganism, might imply that we are slowly going back to ancient "evil" ways. The ritual was once performed as a fertility rite for the land in former Celtic tribes, where a giant wicker man was burned with living beings inside, mostly farm animals but also sometimes humans too, then the ashes were spread on the fields as fertiliser. Technically, the system was good as the ashes would contain a lot of elements beneficial to the crops, mostly a fair amount of nitrogen from the animals, but there are nowadays many very efficient fertilisers on the market that render this method quite fortunately obsolete.

The 1973 British film The Wickerman, starring Christopher Lee and Edward Woodward, should be mentioned as the original source of inspiration for both the song and the video. This film was made in various versions and remains nowadays a cult film for the fans of the genre.



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