Avenged Sevenfold



by Starblind USER (28 Reviews)
August 30th, 2012 | 44 replies

Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Enough is enough.

Just recently, on a hot summer day, too hot to go outside and with too many hours to kill before the midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises, I found myself playing, of all things, Guitar Hero. I believe it was the third game in the series, I could be wrong. If I can recall correctly, I was paying "Re-Education Through Labour" by Rise Against, and about midway through the song, a sheen of embarrassment hit me. "I'm 20", I say to myself, "and I'm playing a video game that requires you to operate a plastic guitar shaped controller to hit the notes. There's no possible way I could stoop lower than this."

But there is- I could be the bands age, which must be at least mid thirties, playing that pop-punk garbage live, the kind of stuff that only attracts teens who think they're hardcore by listening to Rise Against. (On a side one, I'm sure if you ask these little pukes who their favourite Grindcore band is, they'd respond with Waking the Cadaver.)

My point is, one can't help but get that feeling from listening to Avenged's latest album, the fittingly titled "Nightmare". Oh, it's a Nightmare alright. Their drummer dies and right after they get into the studio to record an uninspired album, am I right?

Without a doubt, I do believe the band set the bar way too high with City of Evil. I loved that album and all it stood for, and I still do. It's a refreshingly old school blend of eighties style heavy metal and punk. The strained vocals are fun, the guitar riffs and solos were catchy, and the drumming was inspired as ever, it was like a loving tribute to all the metal from the eighties we loved. When was the last time you heard a song as fittingly retro as "Beast and the Harlot" or "M.I.A."? Or A soulful ballad like "Seize the Day"? Or an epic tune like "The Wicked End" which felt adventurous at 11 minutes?

Their follow up album was a disappointment and the only songs I could remember from it were "Afterlife" and "Dear God". Oh, there was that "Unbound" son with the godawful female voice too.

So it seems like it's only fitting the follow up to THAT would be disappointing too, right?

"Nightmare" is an ugly pop song that didn't work when it was a cringe worthy republican wet dream anthem named "Critical Acclaim", and it sure doesn't work here. It starts off well enough with the glockenspiel intro, and when the guitars and everything kick in is tolerable too, but then Mtt gives you a taste of how cringe worthy the album will be with an inflection-riddled, "NIGHTMAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARE!!!!"

Oh, about inflections, they're everywhere, especially on the first verse of the song. "BELOW! SHOW! FOREVAH! MIND! SIDE!" he goes overboard on his vowel modifications on this tune, and they're ***ing annoying. Matt, stop "Sahnging" and start "singing". The piano on the bridge is recycled from an earlier b-side named Tension, which I must add is superior,

That's only the first song- plenty of the songs here are just boring. "Tonight the World Dies" starts off with an acoustic intro that sounds similar to the intro to "Omega" by Bruce Dickinson, and I can't really remember anything about listening to the tune except for wishing that I was hearing "Omega" instead. "Victim" begins with church bells... and a chorus. Seriously, a chorus and CHURCH BELLS? Am I listening to ***ing Bon Iver or something? And the song doesn't evolve from there either. Sure the lyrics do tackle an important message about domestic violence, bit listen to "Betterman" by Pearl Jam for a much better song with the same topic. "Buried Alive" is 90% of the reason people call A7X emo, with whingy lyrics that could very well be that of Linkin Park, and for the record, I ***ing hate Linkin Park. And "So Far Away", ANOTHER boring ballad? Really?

You may think I hate ballads. I really don't. If they're done well, I love them. Wasting Love by Iron Maiden is one of my favourite ballads ever. But A7X haven't really made very memorable ballads and it shows here.

This CD. does have some good tunes though. "Natural Born Killers" is a fast, catchy, thrashy tune reminiscent of their old days, "God Hates Us" starts with a slow intro that's nice... Then the song kicks you in the face, with its sudden kicking into heavy mode and stomping on your face subsequently until it's a bloody pulp in the ground... Why not more songs like this?

Then comes the highlight of the album, "Fiction". It is beautiful. Really. The gothic, intoxicating piano. The vocals by Jimmy. The sad and melancholy lyrics that sounded like Jimmy knew his end was well near. It's a tear jerker, but it's the perfect swan song for an insanely talented drummer. Matt joining in for a duet as well is beautiful and it's like the death never happened, and like they're just sharing a nice duet. "Save Me", the albums closer, is a fun tune as well, with enough twists and turns to keep you interested, and while not quite "The Wicked End", still feels epic.

In addition, Mike Portnoy does a good job filling in for Jimmy. He's always been one of my favourite drummers and he didn't disappoint here.

But the problem with the album is... There's too much of too little. There's a few good tracks but they're far and between. NBC and GHU are appropriately placed, so why can't the tracks surrounding them be any good? Especially when almost the entire second half is ballads. Three ballads in a row on an album should never happen, even if they're good.

But that's not the worst problem. My biggest fear is that Avenged have chosen a path that may just lead to their musical demise. I can't see them going on for much longer if they keep walking this path. I get that a lot of bands before them have tried to progress forward with their sound by sort of... lightening up, if that's how you put it, but two boring albums in a row is just inexcusable. But I guess every band is allowed to have a boring period... problem is, they might never fully recover.

I get that bands evolve. I get that they want to change and eventually, mature. But look at Maiden. They've matured over time with 15 albums and they still sound like them old selves. Maybe if Avenged released this later in their career it would fare better. However, as I state above, they've unfortunately evolved into the kind of band that attracts the guitar hero kids who only cheer because they recognize the song. And it'd be pretty embarrassing if they played this kind of stuff in their old age.

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user ratings (1714)
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • WicKed110 (4)
    Overall a really good modern rock album with a few heavy metal tracks....

    Robert Garland CONTRIBUTOR (3.5)
    After the passing of their drummer does a band still release quality or consistant music?...

    johnny21874 (5)
    Dynamic, aggressive, strong. Words cannot express the acclaim this album deserves. A great...

    C. William Emerson (2.5)
    If you like myself was anticipating something along the lines of their self titled, you mi...

  • Chob8 (4.5)
    The first album since the tragic passing of Jimmy ‘The Rev’ Sullivan expresses emotion...

    bluehaze54 (3.5)
    A step in the right direction...

    DreamScapeVirus (3)
    While A7X is not for everyone i recommend people who liked the last album and modern hard ...

    Alexd93 (3.5)
    May not be the best album of their career but nightmare serves well in remembering The Rev...

  • TheMabee (3.5)

    Kaje Watkins (4.5)
    This band's latest effort is one of their best, despite losing their drummer, the late Jim...

    Mike Stagno EMERITUS (3)
    While Avenged Sevenfold have previously been able to overcome their weaknesses, the strong...

    Avius (4)
    It probably won't sway the dissenters, but Nightmare only improves on the classic A7X song...

  • J. Ponton EMERITUS (2.5)
    The sound of the band slowly pulling themselves together, in more ways than one....

    lessermaster (3.5)
    Avenged Sevenfold’s “Nightmare” exceeds all of their past efforts in terms of musica...

Comments:Add a Comment 
August 30th 2012



August 30th 2012


Review is fucking lolbad

August 30th 2012


this is worse than s/t thats how bad this is wow thanks for fucking reminding me

Contributing Reviewer
August 30th 2012


Album Rating: 2.0


Digging: Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels 2

August 30th 2012


these guys were a major influence on jacob's ladder

August 30th 2012


i started reading the first part and when i looked to see how much i had left to read i gave up....

August 30th 2012


these guys influenced my first ep

August 30th 2012



August 30th 2012


hmmm [2]

August 30th 2012


Album Rating: 1.5

they all suck

except waking the fallen that one's okay

Digging: Unearth - Watchers of Rule

August 30th 2012


look andcas mate u think u r a true a7x fanboy but u were nothing on me i was gonna get a tattoo when i was older i know all things a7x

Contributing Reviewer
August 30th 2012


This isn't bad. God Hates Us has some of the best vocals since waking the fallen

Digging: Coldworld - Melancholie

Contributing Reviewer
August 30th 2012


"Their drummer dies and right after they go to the studio to record an uninspired album. Am I right?"

They wrote most these songs before the rev died. They thought about not releasing them but they felt it's what the rev would have wanted. The rev also has vocals on the record. Do your research it's probably the most inspirational record they've done even if it's not their best.

August 30th 2012


The overall album is poor, but I enjoyed the song Nightmare. I'm a sucker for metal songs that utilize
gigantic bells (I'm looking at you AC/DC and Metallica!)

Digging: Pitch Black Forecast - As the World Burns

Contributing Reviewer
August 30th 2012


Album Rating: 3.0

decent album

Digging: Aspherium - The Fall of Therenia

August 30th 2012


Periphery is better.

August 30th 2012


Album Rating: 3.0

Review isn't very good, reads like a rant to be honest. I don't mind this album but it's worn off me a lot. Better than the self titled but can't touch Waking the Fallen or City of Evil. I like Tonight the World Dies, God Hates Us, Victim, and So Far Away. Others aren't very good

Contributing Reviewer
August 30th 2012


Album Rating: 3.0

Periphery is better.

but of course

August 30th 2012


Album Rating: 1.5

Write the review and don't tell us about your guitar hero experience most annoying review

August 30th 2012


comments are worse

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