Things are ramping up nicely for Iron Maiden following Bruce Dickinson’s cancer scare earlier this year. The Book of Souls will be out next Friday, and while the band won’t be touring this year in support of it, it was announced that they will be touring next year. And while the dates haven’t been named yet, the band took to Facebook to detail not all of the details, but what they’ll be traveling in. This time, Bruce Dickinson will be piloting a 747. It’s the largest Ed Force One yet! It also features the album cover on the tail of the plane. Maiden’s new tour will hit almost all seven of the continents, hitting 35 countries. The tour is expected to open in the United States in February.
Dickinson spoke about his new plan on Iron Maiden’s website:
“The greatest benefit of travelling in a 747 is that because of its colossal size and freight capacity, we can carry our stage production and all our stage equipment and desks in the cargo hold, without having to make any of the immense structural modifications needed to do this on the previous 757.
“The savings in complexity, time and cost make using the 747 more practical. All we need to do is paint it and move a few seats around, with the added advantage that there is much more room for band and crew. It’s marginally faster at 0.85 MACH, and the range of 13,000km is much greater – which means we will not have to make the refuelling stops we needed to with the 757.”
He adds: “I still have to learn to fly it! I’m currently doing my training at Cardiff Aviation, my aircraft maintenance facility in Wales, where we recently took possession of a 747 simulator which I can’t wait to get practising on.”
While no more details are being provided, Dickinson vows: “We’re all really excited at the thought of bringing our brand new tour to fans who have never seen us play live before, and of course re-visiting all our old friends again too. You can rest assured we are all working hard to put together a spectacular show.”