IRON MAIDEN: Women in Uniform 12″ UK. (Skyhook cover) + Invasion + Phantom of the Opera (live London Marquee 4-7-1980)
(BLACK COLOUR LABELS WITH EDDIE)
SIDE 1 “WOMEN IN UNIFORM”
SIDE 2 “PHANTOM OF THE OPERA” (live London Marquee, 4 July 1980)
ORIGINAL UK 1980 EMI 12EMI 5105(MATRIX NOS.A-4 & B-1U)3 TRACK STEREO 12″ UK SINGLE.
NON BAR CODED PICTURE SLEEVE COVER (UK TOUR DATES NOVEMBER 1980 ON REAR).
A sides cheeky ‘Women in Uniform “is obviously a cover by the Australian band Skyhooks.
If you turn then on the single so you may enjoy the “Invasion” a song first heard on “The Sound House Tapes EP ‘from 1979. It was later re-submitted and ended up on this single B-side, there is also the last recording with the eventually kicked the guitarist Dennis Stratton.
? 1980 Original sound recording made by EMI Records Ltd.
Iron Maidens cover of the Skyhooks’ song “Women in Uniform” was the bands third single and their last recorded work to feature guitarist Dennis Stratton. It was released on 27 October 1980 in order to promote the second British leg of their Iron Maiden Tour.
The idea to cover the song was suggested by the bands publishing company, Zomba, who set them up with studio time at Battery Studios with AC/DC producer Tony Platt. Although sceptical at first about recording a song that was so different to the bands style, bassist Steve Harris conceded when Platt was hired, surmising that “as he worked with AC/DC and that, I thought, ‘Oh, you know, fine. Hes not gonna pull us in any commercial direction.'”. After trying to create their own “heavy” version of the song, to Harris’ dismay he found out that Platt, with help from Stratton, had been tampering with the songs mix as he had been briefed by Zomba to “Try and get a hit single.” As a result, Platt was dismissed and Harris remixed the track himself.
Although the intended mix was restored, the band have routinely mentioned their dislike of the single, with Harris vowing “never, ever, ever to allow anyone outside to fuck around with our music again.”. As a result, its only appearance on CD is as part of The First Ten Years series and a rare 1995 2CD issue of Killers, meaning that the song does not appear remastered.
In spite of this, “Women in Uniform” would also be the basis of the bands first music-video, directed by Doug Smith and filmed at the Rainbow Theatre. Considered an unusual project for a band to undertake in the years preceding MTV, the filming would mark Dennis Strattons last contribution for the band (last stuff recorded with guitarist Dennis Stratton, later on replaced by Adrian Smith).
The song was released almost on the end of the tour, 27/10/1980 and reached the number 35 on the UK top chart.
The single cover features an image of Margaret Thatcher with a machine gun, preparing to attack the groups mascot, Eddie. According to the band, the cover was a joke which was meant to ask whether her motive was through jealousy or revenge (following the infamous “Sanctuary” artwork that featured Eddie killing Thatcher), which managed to cause further controversy as, according to the Liverpool Daily Post, a group of “screaming, chanting, banner-carrying feminists” led a demonstration during Iron Maidens show at Leeds University on 22 November
The sleeve is from thin paper and the vinyl is black. There is also some UK dates on the back sleeve and special thanks to Vic Vella, the guy who on the early days used to drive them to the shows.