Nearly 30 years after Iron Maiden released one of the all-time-greatest metal albums, it's sorta surprising how tame The Number of the Beast sounds these days. This stuff used to cause shock, scandal, and outrage; the band was even labeled a bunch of devil-worshiping degenerates. But anyone who actually bothered to listen to the record heard a group that was searching for answers to some of life's biggest mysteries: Is there a God? Has he forsaken us? Is reality real? What powers drive the evil that men do? Should we just give ourselves over to the pleasures of the flesh and be done with it? But it's not very metal to wax philosophical, so Maiden made some noise. And it did so brilliantly.
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