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Top Misunderstood Song #2 – The Number of the Beast

What Everyone Thinks: It’s a Satanic song! It celebrates Satan, and is BAD.

The Truth: It is not bad. It is awesome.

The song isn’t so much in celebration of Satan as it is in terror of him. Basically, the guy has witnessed a Satanic ritual, though whether it’s in real life or a dream is uncertain…

What did I see? Could I believe? That what I saw
that night was real and not just fantasy

Just what I saw in my old dreams were they
reflections of my warped mind staring back at me?

Torches blazed and sacred chants were phrased
as they start to cry hands held to the sky
In the night the fires are burning bright
the ritual has begun Satan’s work is done
666 the Number of the Beast
Sacrifice is going on tonight

This can’t go on I must inform the lord
Can this still be real or just some crazy dream?

While somewhat scary, this image is one of the milder examples of terrifying 80’s hair.

Ultimately, the storyteller is so freaked out that he goes to tell the authorities what’s happening, but gets sucked into the madness and oh no what now.

But that’s the thing. It’s not, hooray! Rituals! It’s, Oh, no. Rituals.

The thing about Iron Maiden is, they spend a lot of time singing about history, or being afraid. If you’re scared of the devil, you might relate to The Number of the Beast.

I can understand this kind of confusion ‘way back when this first came out and there was no Google to check the lyrics. But it’s now time to look closer. We have the internet.

In conclusion: If Bruce Dickinson and Judy Garland had a baby, that baby’s vibrato would surely be strong enough to shatter even the strongest foundations of the world.

3 Responses to “Misunderstood Songs – Day 2”

  1. on 11 Jun 2008 at 10:23 pm Gluttony

    Iron Maiden kicked butt back in the day, but just like everything else they fade away.

  2. on 12 Jun 2008 at 8:01 am Daily Breather

    A most righteous blog, my friend. It’s 7:57am and I’m belting out Maiden in my head in my cubicle. It’s been a while since I rocked the Maiden so early in the morning. Thanks.
    Btw, my boss’s office is #667. The Neighbor of the Beast!

  3. on 15 Jun 2008 at 4:50 pm Claudio

    Gluttony, Iron Maiden don’t sound that faded away. Since Dickinson came back into it, they started rocking again… I think they survived most of the 80s rock bands without losing themselves!

    Karen, I am so happy to read a righteous blog article on an Iron Maiden’s song here on SNTC… thanks and… Up The Irons! 😀

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