Metal has never been known to be a genre for everybody. As much as some of these bands might have strength in numbers and be loved by fans all around the world, there's a good chance that showing your grandmother a band like Slipknot won't necessarily result in the most pleasant of listening experiences or anything. That's not to say that there aren't at least a few albums that can get you into the genre.
Even though some of these records might be a lot to take in all at once, they all hold up as works of art that can work well beyond the genre they're associated with. Just like all great rock music that has come before it, each of these albums play with your expectations for what a metal record should be, either playing around with different pop sounds every now and again and even throwing some melodic elements into the mix to keep fans rewinding the song back again and again.
Despite these records flirting with a little bit more un-metal sounds across their runtime, there's never a point where they lose their identity or anything. From top to bottom, these are all still metal focused projects, and the song quality is enough to win over almost anyone even mildly curious about the darker side of rock and roll.
10. Piece of Mind - Iron Maiden
For some of the seasoned metalheads in the crowd, some of the greatest hymns in the history of the genre have been made by Iron Maiden. From the first days when metal was finding its feet, almost every single person that picked up a guitar looking to headbang got the trademark gallop that Maiden made so popular on tracks like Run to the Hills. While Number of the Beast may have been the start of the classic period, the more accessible form of Maiden starts just one album later.
Then again, Piece of Mind might not be the best album that Maiden even has to offer. Combing through their back catalog, records like Seventh Son of a Seventh Son may be more indicative of the grandiose side of what Maiden are capable of. What Piece of Mind does have is fundamentals, with almost every one of these songs being a mandatory exercise in what the New Wave of British Heavy Metal was up to at the time.
From the start, you have them kicking down the door with When Eagles Dare before creating a lofty story song with the Flight of Icarus as well as giving us a hint at what the more operatic side of their sound was going to be like on the closer To Tame a Land. Also, anyone who is even thinking about getting into the genre owes it to themselves to give the Trooper a listen, taking everything bombastic about Maiden and condensing it into just a few minutes. Other metal bands might be looking to capture a groove, but Maiden can win over just from pure adrenaline.