The Number of the Beast - Iron Maiden (Single)
Single Track from Iron Maiden - Genre: Rock - Release Year: 1981
1 reviews from the community
Review of "The Number of the Beast - Iron Maiden (Single)"
Woe to you, Oh Earth and Sea, for the Devil sends the beast with wrath, because he knows the time is short.
Perhaps one of the most controversial singles in the career of the band Iron Maiden, “The Number of the Beast” was the band’s second single off the album by the same name, and the seventh in the bands history. As well as the second single off the album it was also the second to feature the then new boy of the band Bruce “Air Raid Siren” Dickinson, who thoroughly stamps his mark on the whole overall sound of the band through this song especially.
The band at the time of the release of this song consisted of:
Bruce Dickinson – Lead Singer
Steve Harris – Bassist
Dave Murray – Lead/Rhythm Guitarist
Adrian Smith – Lead/Rhythm Guitarist
Clive Burr – Drums
Beginning with a couple of biblical quotes taken straight from the Book of Revelations done in the style of Vincent Price and provided by the late Barry Clayton, the track starts off with a rapidly running guitar riff with Bruce’s calm and collected lyrics gently treading over the proceedings. Slowly, but surely Dickinson’s voice builds and builds into an almighty scream that seems to come from the very bowels of hell itself. Following this the song really blisters along with a pace and strength that draws the listener along at breakneck speed. With drums and bass line thumping along and the twin pronged guitar chugging from Dave and Adrian, Bruce has nothing to do, but allow his great vocal talent to run riot over the top of everything.
Lyrically the song is seen to contain an awful lot of satanic content and meaning, but like so many parts of the Bible the meaning of the number 666 which is used throughout the song can be taken in another form as some believe that the number 666 actually referred to the Roman emperor Nero, who at the time of the Bible’s conception was considered by many to be the face of evil throughout the known lands. Alongside this concept there are a number of other explanations as to the meaning behind the number. The songs actual meaning though comes from a nightmare suffered by Steve Harris after watching the film the Omen II. However, the association with the biblical quotations at the beginning of the song, and the use of the mythical number 666 has lead to this track being the bands most controversial song to date. However this additional publicity formed the basis for what has become a firm favourite amongst fans. The track itself due to its popularity with the fans has been one of the few that has remained a constant mainstay within the bands live repertoire.
The song has a great many of the band’s trademark sounds contained within it, everything from the twin lined guitar riffs through to the thumping roar of the bass guitar. The main star of the song though is the fantastic voice of Bruce, as he proves himself to be amongst the greats in the Metal world. One of the mainstay features of any Maiden song is the formidable guitar solo, and this song benefits from not just one, but two as Dave takes the first honours, followed by Adrian’s turn at bat.
For now twenty years this has been a tried and tested Maiden classic that very few other songs from the genre can compete with, and it will always remain a firm favourite of mine, as well as a virtual army of Maiden fans.
Product Information : The Number of the Beast - Iron Maiden (Single)
Manufacturer's product descriptionSingle Track from Iron Maiden - Genre: Rock - Release Year: 1981
Artist(s): Iron Maiden
Title: The Number of the Beast
Release Date: 31/12/1981
Rights: Digital Remaster 1998 The copyright in this sound recording is owned by EMI Records Ltd
Release Year: 1981
Listed on Ciao since: 13/08/2010