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AVENGED SEVENFOLD - Avenged Sevenfold


One of the best selling albums of the year in the mainstream rock world takes the form of AVENGED SEVENFOLD’s self-titled fourth album. Avenged Sevenfold sees the band going into another distinct stylistic direction. Their last one, City of Evil, was a surprising power metal romp through HELLOWEEN and STRATOVARIUS. The new album is more distinctly American in style and is more about a mainstream 90’s metal/hard rock sound with more melodic sensibilities. Fans can let out a collective sigh of relief to know that vocalist M. Shadows’ voice is in considerably better shape now. His melodic vocals have gotten back on track and he no longer sounds as if he’s struggling to keep up. Every song here is bent on being a catchy hit and the results vary from the good to the overwhelmingly cheesy. AVENGED SEVENFOLD dish out the obligatory combination of sappy, eyeliner dripping songs and the harder, heavier ones. There’s a lot experimentation with the incorporation of female vocals, country-style guitars, fast piano runs, and wind and string accompaniment. However, they usually come off as being ill-conceived and ill-executed, especially the Tim Burton-esque “A Little Piece of Heaven.” The band’s most legit member in lead guitarist Synyster Gates delivers another top notch performance as he lights up the fretboard. Overall, Avenged Sevenfold is not a bad album nor a particularly great one. It all depends on how much you love (or hate) the band. AVENGED SEVENFOLD’s rabid fans will undoubtedly eat this up and rabidly defend it till the end of their adolescence. (Warner Bros. Records)