With Iron Maiden’s 16th studio album, The Book Of Souls out Friday, this seems like a good time to look back on the band’s many incredible album covers. Few bands ever have been more dedicated to creating iconic cover art. Maiden’s covers, featuring their immortal mascot Eddie, have been frightening eighth-grade metalheads for decades. With that in mind, we’re ranking every Maiden studio album cover from worst to best. Before we get started, let’s remember two key things:
- We’re strictly talking about the cover, not the quality of the album.
- I argued with myself a ton about these rankings, and will probably re-arrange them in my head several times after this.
Okay, now that’s settled, let’s begin sorting this out.
16. Virtual XI (1998)
This one is just way too messy. First off, the logo looks super awkward with the way they try to fit it into the color scheme. More importantly, Eddie looks too silly to be genuinely frightening here. It’s like he’s Krusty The Klown’s skeleton. In an amusing coincidence, Iron Maiden’s worst studio album also featured their worst cover art.