Paul Anthony of Planet Rock conducted an interview with Bruce Dickinson ahead of IRON MAIDEN's headlining appearance at last weekend's Download festival in the U.K. You can now listen to the chat using the widget below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On performing in China for the first time on "The Book Of Souls" tour:
Bruce: "China was interesting — actually a lot less difficult in some respects and more challenging in other respects. And the big picture was actually quite straightforward. It was stupid stuff that you're just, like, 'Why?' And the answer is I think they are a little bit inflexible, they're still a little bit scared of everybody going raving mad if they allow everybody complete freedom of thought and action. But, honestly, we did 99 percent of everything we normally do, and it went down great."
On paying tribute to the victims of the Bataclan massacre while performing at the French edition of the Download festival on June 10:
Bruce: "It was actually a flag that was a specific guy that was killed at the Bataclan. And there were a lot of his friends at the shows, and they said, 'Could you hold it up and just sort of do it?' So I thought it was kind of an appropriate thing to do, because we… When the Bataclan thing happened, it was very difficult to know exactly what to do. I mean, people were very quick to put out tribute statements, and this statement and that statement. It was such an awful thing; it was manifestly obvious that it was a shocking event. I'm not sure sometimes it helps if everybody goes out making statements left, right and center. Everybody knows it was a terrible thing. And it was long enough, and there was a good enough opportunity to stand there and say, 'Look, the best thing we can do with all these things is stand up and live your life.' That's the best message you can send."
IRON MAIDEN's world tour, in support of the band's latest album, "The Book Of Souls", kicked off on February 24 in Sunrise, Florida (a suburb of Fort Lauderdale).