Iron Maiden
The Number of the Beast


5.0
classic

Review

by Kit Brown USER (73 Reviews)
April 27th, 2006 | 28 replies | 5,978 views


Release Date: 1982 | Tracklist

Review Summary: INVADERSSSSSSSSSS! RAPING!!!!!!!!1

7 of 7 thought this review was well written

There comes a point in time where a band is no longer just popular, they are a force of nature. A monster that cannot be tamed. There are very few of those bands, especially in the heavy metal scene. But if you ask most metal fans who some of the classic greats are, you'll probably get the typical list: Metallica, Megadeth, and of course...

Iron Maiden

This band has been playing some of the metal scene's greatest hits since the late 1970s and hasn't really showed any signs of stopping. They've released a myriad of full length albums, live CDs, the infamous Rock in Rio DVD, and much much more. Their live shows have become well known as some of the best around, thanks to their triple guitar attack, pounding rhythm section, soaring vocals and elaborate stages.

But what of the band's albums? Sure, their older material is not as earth shattering as their first few, but no worries. You can always go back and listen to such classics as Killers and Powerslave and always find something new to fall in love with...but what is the band's "best" album? I'm going to have to agree with the masses and say that it's this one. 666!

The Number of the Beast

Iron Maiden on this album was:
Steve Harris - Bass
Bruce Dickinson - Vocals
Dave Murray - Guitar
Adrian Smith - Guitar
Clive Burr - Drums

"This album is a metal classic? Why's that?"

Why, I'm glad that you asked. This album was the band's big break upon the rock and metal scene in 1983. Their first two albums (Iron Maiden and Killers), while both being solid releases, were just not enough to make them the legends that we know them of now. What was the reason behind this? It's a simple answer, and I can explain it in two words: Bruce Dickinson. This man has been known as one of the best vocalists not only in metal, but of all of rock history. His voice has become infamous because of his soaring high notes that has been imitated many times but never truly duplicated. Every song on this album features some of his finest work, if not the finest. Paul Di'anno just can't compete.

Another reason would be another two word answer: the riffs. This band is well known for their constant swift E minor riffing, and this album has some of their finest and most popular ones. Take the band's most famous song "Hallowed Be Thy Name" as a prime example. This song is simply loaded with great dual guitar parts from start to finish. The harmonized part at about 5:50 is not just the best riff on the album, but one of the best riffs ever created by the band, if not the best. Steve Harris, the band's bass player and principle songwriter, also loads up the album with his very loud bass lines that have now made the band different from the other 80s metal acts. Songs like "Invaders" and "22 Acacia Avenue" are jam packed with swift bass lines, courtesy of Harris' lightning fast right hand.

If you know me and my tolerance with metal albums, you'd know that I don't like a band that plays the same song 10 times in a row and calls it an album. It just doesn't work unless there's some change in the middle. Iron Maiden knows how to balance their sound in order to make an album tasteful and know when to change things up. After you've just been sucked in by the galloping lines of "Invaders", the band insantly slows things down and enters the slower and very emotional "Children of the Damned". And of course, the final powerful song "Hallowed Be Thy Name" shows that the band can start off with a slow song and by the end play some of their speedy riffs. Balance is a key factor in what makes this album so great.

"Wow, that sounds awesome! I really should pick this up! So are you saying that this album doesn't have anything wrong with it?"

...Just about. There are only a few complaints that I can make with this album, and I'm going to be very brief about them. While all of the songs are listenable, some of them have their lacking moments. "The Prisoner", even though the chorus is very catchy, is not as consistent when being compared to the juggernauts this album has to offer. I know I'm going to get some crap for this, but I can't say that I really like "Run to the Hills" that much, either. The guitar riffs aren't anything special when you put them up against other riffs that you've already heard on the album. And I can't take the lyrics seriously either, seeing as how they're singing about the injustices that the Native Americans had to go through, and they're a band from England. It seems a bit out of place, you know?

Other than just a few low sections on the album, I'm extremely pleased with it and I can listen to it many times, never tiring of it.

Track Ratings:
Invaders: 5/5
Children of the Damned: 4.5/5
The Prisoner: 3/5
22 Acacia Avenue: 5/5
The Number of the Beast: 5/5
Run to the Hills: 3.5/5
Gangland: 4/5
Total Eclipse: 4/5
Hallowed Be Thy Name: 6/5 :)

Final Album Rating: 5/5 -- A Metal Classic!



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Apocalyptic Raids
April 27th 2006



810 Comments


Nice review. I would probably rate 7th Son, Piece Of Mind and maybe Powerslave above ths though.

Iai
Emeritus
April 27th 2006



3553 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Man, "Invaders" and "22 Acacia Avenue" are two of the worst peak-era Iron Maiden songs. And only 4.5 for "Children of The Damned"? Only 3.5 for "Run To The Hills"? Ouch.

kno_kontrol
April 27th 2006



448 Comments


Im not huge on this album, its alright, but I prefer Powerslave, as I think thats my favorite album from them. Good review nonetheless
This Message Edited On 04.27.06

pattern_recognition
April 27th 2006



950 Comments


I'm sure a lot of people already know this, but...
If you've never noticed, the intro of Fade To Black (by Metallica) is virtually identical to the intro of Children Of The Damned, except played with slightly different chords and slowed down.
Listen to it, it's quite unmistakeable.
Not that I'm knocking Metallica or anything. We all know Maiden was an influence on them.
They're both great bands, they're both great songs, and they're both off great albums.
Great review, too, Thor. My fave track would have to be Hallowed Be Thy Name.

incubotic
April 27th 2006



78 Comments


Ive never really seen what the big deal is with Iron Maiden to be honest, I saw them at Reading and they seemed to be good preformers but the music just doesnt do anything for me.

-The Frank
April 27th 2006



5 Comments


you gave gangland a 4/5 and the prisoner a 3/5?

not cool

tom79
April 27th 2006



3365 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Hallowed Be Thy Name and the title track are amazing. The whole album is good. Good Review too.

Digging: Rainer Maria - Look Now Look Again

Sepstrup
April 27th 2006



1563 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I'm not much into metal but I like this album. Hallowed Be Thy Name is fantastic. I can see your point about the lyrics in Run To The Hills, but it's still a great song, in my opinion.

I think Iron Maiden are a great band for people who have prejudices against the genre, because they simply sound good. I can, for instance, understand why people don't like early Metallica album, because James can't really sing. Good album for people who aren't into the genre, definitely.This Message Edited On 04.27.06

crag
April 27th 2006



4 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

nice review, but IMO the majority of Maiden's other albums are far superior to this one.

Aeksis8745
April 27th 2006



448 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Yeah I agree this one wasn't that appealing to me although it did have one of my favorites on it (Hallowed). Powerslave was a much better album and my favorite from them.This Message Edited On 04.27.06

ollie_poole
April 27th 2006



19 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

QUOTE: "And I can't take the lyrics seriously either, seeing as how they're singing about the injustices that the Native Americans had to go through, and they're a band from England."
I resent that. The main persecution of the Natives came loooooooong after we English (the proper term is actually British) had left. Ever heard of a little something called the 1763 Proclamation Line?
Anyway not wanting to make this into something from the politics part of the pit...but I agree the lyrics are a bit OTT maybe. But that's metal for you! Spinal Tap forever!This Message Edited On 04.27.06

led-zep-chris
April 27th 2006



52 Comments


This is the album that got me into Maiden in the first place. I like your review and I love the album
Ya know they're planning to make another one?

Bfhurricane
April 27th 2006



6197 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

^to the comment above^ NEW ALBUM THIS FALL!
Awesome album too. As a matter of fact, awesome review! This and Powerslave are easily in my top 10 albums of all time. I can see why a lot of people prefer Powerslave or 7th Son over this, its one thing to compare one Iron Maiden album to the next because they're all good. But there is hardly an album out there by another band that can top the musicianship, composition (everything from the riffs to the lyrics) and just plain awesomeness of this.

tom79
April 27th 2006



3365 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Hey i agree with you Thor, Run To The Hills is not one of my favorites on the album either. I still like it, but Maiden has made better in my opinion.This Message Edited On 04.27.06

temporary
April 27th 2006



207 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I honestly don't think this compares to Piece of Mind, Powerslave, or Seventh Son,
but its still a fine album. Children of the Damned and Hallowed Be Thy Name are
mind boglingly good, though. Of course, its not quite the same without Nicko...

Edit: I do agree with you on Run to the Hills, I'd say its far from their best.This Message Edited On 04.27.06

south_of_heaven 11
April 27th 2006



5433 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

As a Maiden worshipper, I love this album.
And I will point out that this review was great.
However, "The Prisoner" is one of the highlights of this album IMO, as with "Run to the Hills". "Gangland" on the other hand, should've been a 3.
But "Hallowed Be Thy Name" is my all-time favorite song ever. It is simply mind-blowing.

lJl Ricoche X
April 27th 2006



9 Comments


Great CD by Maiden, definatly their first big seller. It's got it all from the radio stuff you hear (number of the beast + run to the hills) and then it has just pure amazingness (hollowed be thy name). These aren't the only good songs on the CD, the whole things amazing, they couldn't have done it without Brucy Wucy.

Neoteric
April 27th 2006



3243 Comments


Great review, this reminds me to re-write my one....

Mikesn
Emeritus
April 27th 2006



3709 Comments

Album Rating: 4.3

Great album, but I prefer Powerslave and Somewhere in Time. I always thought Number of the Beast (song) and Run to the Hills were kind of overrated though.

Jim
April 28th 2006



5110 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Don't worry Thor, I'm not too crash-hot on Run to the Hills either. Great song, but there's better on here. And pattern_recognition isn't the only one to notice the rather blatent comparative qualities of Children of the Damned and Fade to Black. First thing I thought when I heard it actually.
In conclusion, classic for sho'.



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