I consider the hate on Angel and the Gambler just a mindless apeing mentality. Someone reads a heavily overblown comment on the song and how the chorus is repeated 40 million times and they pick up on that and repeat the mantra.
They love how they are aware of that the chorus is repeated a lot and are filled with joy to announce it to everyone that they do.
I think everybody who listened to that song the first few times did realize that the chorus was repeated a lot, but that doesn't indicate that it's a bad song. Besides it's a pretty unique song that is specifically written that way so it doesn't feel too weird that the chorus is repeated that much. It's the 'style' of the song. A very unique style. This is how I see it.
And besides all that, the melody in which the vocals are sang, verse and chorus are pleasing to hear and the backing rhytmn sounds uplifting as well. I can totally understand someone disliking the song but not when it's stated in a way like as if it may be one of the worst things humanity has ever done.
I agree with you completely. Repeating a line or an entire chorus is a standard in music, so it's not necessarily a sin if one song repeats it above average. I found The Angel and the Gambler didn't go overboard, as many other songs have. Again, I can point my barrels at the "popular" music heard on the radio at work, much of which is sloppily written, and in my opinion the "worst" of IM's music still trumps it.
Perhaps I'm accustomed to repetitive music, having grown up in the church, singing in a choir and playing in an orchestra, where poorly put together hymns and worship choruses repeating the same basic phrases were sung ad infinitum. That makes me a little more forgiving to a song like TAatG. Granted, it's far from the expected Maiden material, but a half decent ride on its own.
That and I take some personal relation to most of the lyrics.