Let me make it short and simple because no matter how much I take moment to say my opinion and prove a point, some “fans” will always take my word as something bad and immature… here goes, People grow up, minds open up and words evolve along with the melodies, to Avenged Sevenfold there’s more than meets the eye… Yes I know yesterday fans will find a bad review to anyone who thinks avenged keeps getting better since city of evil… This is my case, if not very well appreciated… My advice … If you like singing more than screaming, Buy it with no hesitation as this album expresses a new sound to this Yet Rock Band, very well crafted album, it really is quality… Such a good album, too bad I’ll get many unhelpful votes as these “fans” will click for fun and ignorance instead of finding the real art in music. And really getting to grow up with the bands that have made them rock the heck out of a concert or party. In conclusion, this album is 5 stars hands down with 2 thumbs up!!!!
Metal Album Reviews[RSS]
Ok. Thing with this album is, in order to like this album, you have to be a fan of AVENGED SEVENFOLD, or a new listener. Not particularly a fan of Waking the Fallen, or City of Evil, or…eh, Warmness and Sounding something or other. This album is NOT like the others, but no one should be surprised, because thats exactly what the band said before it came out.
This album is awesome. There are songs that will make you raise an eyebrow(if you’re one of those people who can) but as you really listen to them, you FEEL it. Gunslinger, for example, is mindblowing to me, but when it started I was thinking…’what the..?’. A Little Piece of Heaven, is the craziest, and longest. If you watch the MVI, The Rev wrote it, and he and Shadows went crazy singing it, so you can only imagine. Brompton Cocktail, could be my favorite, or Scream, or Gunslinger, which has the deepest lyrics, I think. Which is another good thing to this CD. The lyrics.
All in all, if you’re one of those people expecting another City of Evil, Waking the Fallen, or Sounding the Seventh Trumpet, you wont get it. This still has the Avenged Sevenfold feel, just with a different sound. So try it. I never spend my sad little amounts of money on music that isnt top notch.
Whoa. Where do I start with this one? Okay, I’m just going to say right now that Avenged Sevenfold have created a career-defining album. It may not be their heaviest album to date, but the band ditched the metalcore thing a long time ago. This upset and alienated many of the longtime fans and I’ll admit that it kinda rubbed me the wrong way. At first. Then I realized that with “City of Evil”, the band I had grown to love with “Sounding the Seventh Trumpet” and “Waking the Fallen” were going for something different altogether. But when you think about it, each record they’ve done has always been radically different than the one before it, so a big change on this album shouldn’t come as such a suprise. Still, as different as this self-titled album is, I think it’s their best, most focused (albeit, more polished) yet. It’s the sound of a band busting out of a genre and truly discovering themselves. In short, this is their “Sing the Sorrow”. This is their “Black Album”. It’s sure to upset many, but just as many will find something to love.
Despite all the hatred these guys have had to deal with, they know who their true fans are and this masterpiece should please most of them looking to hear something different than what they’ve come to expect. Still, as different as it may be, it’s still distinctly A7X. This is apparent fromt the get-go with the first three tracks. You gotta love the intro to “Critical Acclaim” and although I’m normally not a fan of politically-themed music, it’s refreshing to hear a different take other than just how much “the administration sucks”. “Almost Easy” didn’t do much for me the first time I heard it but it grew on me after a couple of listens and I can now see why it was chosen as their first single. If the album has one weak moment, it would have to be “Scream”. While far from bad, it’s just kinda mediocre by the band’s standards. It does have a pretty cool “Vulgar”-era, Pantera-esque groove to it and it’s kinda nice to have in the background when you’re having a few.
The album really takes a hard turn with “Afterlife”. This is where things start to really get different. We will most certainly be seeing a video for this one soon on Headbanger’s Ball because it’s sure to be one of the band’s biggest hits. Starts off with some strings before diving headfirst into a dual-harmonies and insane drumming before switching into mid-temp then the chorus hits and we’re left in awe. Yeah, thsi song alone will probably gain them more fans. I’m not sure yet but this could almost be their “Unforgiven”.
“Lost” is one of my favorites right now and it’s one of those that they’re going to catch a lot of grief about. They took the Auto-tune, which is normally used for pitch-correction, and actually used it to give the Dragonforce-like track a whole new vocal dimension. Almost liked they used it as another instrument. It’s laid on so thick that it takes the vocals to a whole new level. Not everybody will dig it, purists are sure to hate it, but I think it was a brilliant move on their part.
If you’ve read ANY reviews, then you’ve probably already heard about “A Little Piece of Heaven”. The first time I heard this one, I had a vicious hangover so things were moving a little slow for me and I had to give it three consecutive listens just to wrap my mind around what all was going on. I read somewhere that the original title was “Big Bear” (an awesome title that I wish they would’ve kept) and this is their “Bohemian Rhapsody”. There aren’t many bands that could pull off a track like this one, and it really should seem kinda out of place, but for some reason it works. “The Nightmare Before Christmas” comparisons are obvious but this plays more like a Tim Burton nightmare mixed with Beetle Juice and a strong dose of sick humor thrown in for good measure. Love it. (Is it just me or is there even a little bit of Mr. Bungle thrown in the mix too?)
The album is nearly flawless in my mind and the production (done by the band) is perfect. (Truth be told, I think Rick Rubin would’ve have been the only other man for the job.) True enough, it will probably alienate a few fans who were expecting “Waking the Fallen 2″ or who’re still mad at Metallica for not recycling “Master Of Puppets” for the rest of their career, but it’s sure to gain them many more fans. In short, die hards will love it, as will open-minded people who are sick of the same-ole radio schtick. Also, it’s ALWAYS a good thing when you can listen to a whole album in one sitting and still be wanting more. 9/10
Since the release of City of Evil, Avenged Sevenfold has been crucified for knocking off the kings of 80’s metal. With their latest self-titled effort, they haven’t mimicked their idols; they just may have become them for their generation.
Avenged Sevenfold is bigger than its categorical brethren in every way. The ungodly solos, the intricate measure for measure harmonizing, the heart-attack drum licks and huge chorus’ all make for a career defining performance.
Kicking off the album with their heaviest track to date is “Critical Acclaim.” After an organ intro that sounds as if listeners are passing through cemetery’s gates and some sleek guitar work that paints the path to come, the track explodes into metal mayhem with double bass and give and take guitar chugging not heard since a certain Vulgar Display of Power. Vocalist M. Shadows’ lyrical rant is easily the most delicious liberal call-out heard in years.
“Critical Acclaim” also unleashes A7X’s newest vocal talent – The Rev. His “Sebastian Bach on heroine” vocal styling is interesting to say the least and plays an important role throughout the album.
The classic thrash of “Almost Easy” continues the upbeat journey, complete with trip-licks courtesy of The Rev and a monster chorus. Following suit is “Scream,” which possesses an extremely dark vibe, complimented with one of the most interesting ascensions and dissensions of scale heard to date.
“Afterlife” proves to be the first explicit differentiation, as it opens with mournful strings and paints a heavy picture of the young dying and trying to escape the afterlife in hopes of resurrecting what was lost. This fascinating display of self-examination and self-regret ends with the most impressive Synyster Gates solo yet.
“Gunslinger” is yet another dissension, as it starts off with M. Shadows delivering smooth vocals, only accompanied by a plucky, acoustic Gates riff. The Southern Rock vibe is strangely welcome and the moment in which the strings go electric is the kind of thing that raises goose bumps.
Shadows’ vocals throughout the album are smoother and more melodic than ever before. He has truly come into his own, developing a sound similar to that of Phil Anselmo of the now defunct Pantera.
“A Little Piece of Heaven” is an absolute triumph. With the help of Danny Elfman’s go-to guys Oingo Boingo, it sounds as if it’s the center-piece of a yet-to-come Tim Burton epic. The dark, yet circusy vibe, complete with full orchestration, vocal give-and-take between Shadows and The Rev. and A7X’s darkest lyrics to date add up to undoubtedly the biggest accomplishment of their career.
Concluding the ride is “Dear God,” an outright country track. Somehow Avenged manage to pull this off, creating their most heartfelt song to date. It obviously wouldn’t be an Avenged track without a solo, which is provided over the last minute of this monster country ballad.
“Dear God/ the only thing I ask of you is to hold her when I’m not around/ when I’m much too far away/ we all need that person who can be true to you/ I left her when I found her/ And now I wish I’d stayed,” sings Shadows.
Avenged Sevenfold is a career-defining album. This self-produced masterpiece reaches heights not even remotely envisioned within the parameters of today’s metal genre. This is a musical journey that will not soon be forgotten.
Up until 2 days ago, all I knew of Avenged Sevenfold were the 2 songs regularly played on Kerrang! TV here in the UK. I liked those enough that when I was wandering through the local HMV store, I noticed that the self-titled CD was on sale and decided to treat myself. And what a treat it has turned out to be. First of all, if you like your metal loud and screaming, non-stop and unintelligible, then this CD may not be for you. Granted there are a couple of tracks that roll around like a thunderstorm caught between two hills, but this CD has much more to offer. Lyrics that at first listen sound innocuous enough but on deeper reading become very dark and vicious, juxtapose wonderfully with soaring guitar work and M Shadows’ gravel-in-honey voice. And right when you think they are a full-blown metal gatepost, you are sidelined with the gorgeous lament of being far from home and missing your girlfriend. Genius!
In an age when most bands actually want to be labeled as a certain genre, Avenged Sevenfold seem perfectly at ease with doing whatever comes to mind. They look metal. They can write with a goth sorrow. They can be as sarcastic as the best punk offerings. The orchestral arrangements add so much to already full songs, and the musicianship and production are polished and swaggering. M Shadows struck me at first glance as another Chester from Linkin Park; he still does but if anything his vocal range is greater and smoother, this guy can sing and growl as required. He is also by far the best eye candy of the quintet, though none of them are shrinking violets and are sure to have their fair share of groupies.
The CD opens with the bitter and twisted “Critical Acclaim”, setting the goth tone with an intro on a church organ. The cover notes don’t say which of the band write the songs, but M Shadows gives it perfect credence with his ranting in mid-tune. Hot on it’s heals comes the single that broke the band in the UK, “Almost Easy”. It’s melodic riff and broken pace is commercial enough for the accountants but distinct enough to do the business. Track 3 is “Scream”, a mix of gothic and bluesy vocals with a chorus that reminds me of old Bond themes, there is something sinister about this song that surfaces again later on the CD. Another great guitar segway leads into a manic chain-saw reminiscent moment; perhaps the band have been watching American Psycho?
The second single from the CD arrives in a funereal mourning of strings full of of false pretenses as “AfterLife” launches into more fast-paced guitars and drums. As M Shadows laments that he shouldn’t be there, the listener is never quite sure if he is the damned or the devil, his voice has such a dangerous edge. By now we know the lad can sing, but track 5 is a wonderful diversion from the metal noise we’ve had so far. “Gunslinger”, perhaps inspired by the Stephen King series “The Dark Tower”, begins with an acoustic blues air as if it’s sitting out on the porch with the sun setting over a dusty plain. Shadows cant keep his voice in check for more than a verse though, and everyone else wants in on the action, lifting the song to classical proportions. This could be the next single; it is certainly commercial enough and shows the band’s range. It feels like an Guns and Roses effort, but with less whining from Axel and more soul from Shadows. “Unbound” brings us back to familiar territory with busy guitars, but wait, is that a piano? Younger British rock fans will feel at home with this track as it strongly echoes the rocksters Eliot Minor with lots of intricate scales rising and falling on a bed of frantic drums. The child-sung bridge is a little unnerving, but it is probably meant to be: Avenged Sevenfold seem happy to make you as uncomfortable as possible while lulling you into parting with your time and money willingly. If I had to pick one track as the filler for this CD, “Unbound” would be it, but only if I absolutely had to pick one.
Another strange twist comes with “Brompton Cocktail” and yes, those are bongos. After wanting to leave the After life earlier in our travels, M Shadows seems to have changed his mind and is now embracing his own end. The title suitably refers to a gothic era, and there is something very Evanescence about this track. Is Shadows the male equivalent to the delectable Amy Lee? You decide. With “Lost” the band return to the opening theme of not being happy with their leaders. This is an anti-war song that assaults the ears with the power of a stealth bomber. And yet more unusual sounds, as Shadows’ vocals are fed through a distorter for the chorus, in case the song needed any more edge. Which it doesn’t. Track 9 is a romp to rival any dark Victorian-style horror show; if you don’t read the lyrics sheet then it is a good quirky song, but delve into the words and you will find a gruesome and violent story with a manic-sarcastic lilt that buffers sickness with humour. As Shadows tells us “She was never this good in bed ~ not even when she was sleepin’” you just know he is serious. It really is a masterpiece but not for those with a delicate disposition, and I imagine Tim Burton being desperate to get his hands on the contract for the video for this one.
The CD ends with another gorgeous ballad, “Dear God”. Coming directly after “A Little Piece of Heaven” the contrast is welcome and jarring at the same time. Leave ‘em wanting more has always been the motto of the best entertainers, and with this Avenged Sevenfold have surely succeeded.