Avenged Sevenfold
Hail to the King


3.0
good

Review

by OhCarrots USER (1 Reviews)
August 20th, 2013 | 22 replies | 2,967 views


Release Date: 08/27/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Avenged Sevenfold dig further into their roots with reasonable results.

8 of 18 thought this review was well written

Avenged Sevenfold have certainly had an interesting history, haven't they? In terms of discography, none of their records are completely identical and yet there are numerous trademarks that identify them all the same. Either way, they've had a few great efforts (City of Evil, Waking the Fallen) as well as a misfire or two (don't even get me started on their self-titled album). However, after the death of the band's drummer The Rev (who also contributed a good chunk of the songwriting), the band have opted to bring a more mature approach, as seen on 2010's Nightmare. There was more emphasis on ballads, more sensitive and dark subject matter, the works. So with a new drummer and a more diverse well of influences to draw from, how does the new record Hail to the King stack up? Well, it kinda goes forward and backward in different places.

First things first though; let's start with some positives. For instance, M. Shadows has grown to be a much more consistent singer, even though he doesn't exactly stretch his limits like he did on Waking the Fallen. He doesn't sound quite as nasally here and at least harbors some confidence in his higher range. The musicianship is pretty damn good as well, definitely making a noble effort to bring the listener back to the days of 80s Iron Maiden and Metallica. New drummer Arin Ilejay doesn't really show his chops very much on this release, instead just keeping things tight in the rhythm section. The songwriting has also become more consistent with this album, keeping the quality in a steady line instead of having a lot of "peaks and valleys" stylistically. Instead of a bunch of mini-epics as heard on City of Evil, Hail to the King just feels tighter and more concise; the song lengths are shorter and you aren't being assaulted by a barrage of guitar noodling (for the most part).

While opener "Shepherd of Fire" begins on a slightly sour note (doesn't the beginning of Illud Divinum Insanus by Morbid Angel come to mind pretty quickly with those midi-sounding synthesizers?), it picks up when the main melody comes around. What you get is a midtempo number with a healthy amount of double bass drumming and harmonized vocals lines. 80s classic metal comes to mind pretty quickly with the songwriting, particularly during the soaring vocal melodies of the chorus. The solo is also nice, with Synyster Gates walking that fine line between appealing melodic lines and those fun shredding moments found on City of Evil. When you get down to it, the faster songs such as this one are some of the best on the album. "Doing Time" is a shorter number that reminds one a bit of "The Struggle Within" from Metallica's self-titled black album, with a similar punk-ish drum beat and such. The music is a bit thrashier on this one as well, particularly in the guitar riffs and vocals; there's a real sense of fun in the music, especially in the speed aspect. You get that certain rush of energy when you hear the homages to 70s and 80s rock n' roll. Songs like "Coming Home" and "Heretic" are similar in tone and follow the pace the other fast metal tracks had already set.

Unfortunately, "following the pace" is where this album falters. While this album is more consistent than other Avenged Sevenfold efforts, it feels even less inspired than many of its predecessors. Many of the songs that try to give off an epic or generally more serious vibe just sound cheesy and downright ridiculous, particularly with "Planets," "Requiem," and Crimson Day." With songs like these, you get such treats as: hilarious choir chants, symphonic samples that would sound better in an Age of Empires game, a ballad that's pretty much five ballads in one, and so forth. Not only that, but we get to the two biggest travesties pretty early on, which are the title track and ESPECIALLY "This Means War." The latter is just awful, particularly because it's pretty much "Sad But True" by Metallica. Low doomy verses with shouting on the first beat of the measures? Check. A long lead guitar line glazed over the top of said riff during the chorus? Check. Pretty much the exact same tempo? Absolutely. The song is an absolute insult; it can't even be considered a rip-off, as it's basically the same exact song with little alterations here and there.

So yeah, this album is very frustrating. It knows what it wants to be, but doesn't know how to go about doing so. Despite the many issues of the album, it is at least a fun one; the classic metal influences and speedy tempos, as well as proficient instrumentation, make the record enjoyable enough. It definitely could have done without the quasi-epic and completely uninspired songs as well, though. This gets my recommendation, but just barely. It's just slightly above the average mark because of those awesome moments when things click.


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Comments:Add a Comment 
OhCarrots
August 20th 2013



335 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

I know there have already been 4 reviews for this, but I wanted to put in my own two cents. Thanks for reading.

JS19
August 20th 2013



4164 Comments


Stop reviewing this album. It's been a day.

Digging: Sadistik - Ultraviolet

OhCarrots
August 20th 2013



335 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Thanks. I listened to this a lot throughout today and yesterday so I could give a more in-depth analysis. I'm not sure if I want to delete and repost this once I get back on my Necrotica account

OhCarrots
August 20th 2013



335 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Haha, I don't know :P Apparently I have 8 days left, but I'm ready for this whole thing to end

OhCarrots
August 20th 2013



335 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Eh, I think A7X is one of those bands where you'll get negged no matter what rating you give one of their albums

Calc
August 20th 2013



12006 Comments


"the band's drummer The Rev (who also contributing a good chunk of the songwriting)"

you know...

Digging: Kashiwa Daisuke - April. #02

joomisy
August 20th 2013



467 Comments


sexy review






not

Cipieron
August 20th 2013



3508 Comments


"However, after the death of the band's drummer The Rev (who also contributing a good chunk of the songwriting). the band have opted to bring a more mature approach, as seen on 2010's Nightmare. There was more emphasis on ballads, more sensitive and dark subject matter, the works. So with a new drummer and a more diverse well of influences to draw from..."



i guess context is everything calc

nononsense
August 20th 2013



3325 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

You got neg'd for your rating, not the review. Well done.

Calc
August 20th 2013



12006 Comments


lets try again cipieron:

"who also contributing a good chunk"

see now?

TheMoonchild
August 20th 2013



444 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Well he did say it well, they're one of those bands who you'll get negged for rating, regardless of the rating.

Digging: Opeth - Pale Communion

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
August 20th 2013



20641 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

oh carrots

Digging: Fallujah - The Flesh Prevails

OhCarrots
August 20th 2013



335 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

@Calc: Got it

Lowder91bird
August 20th 2013



479 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

This album is boring. But this review is pretty well written

Digging: Opeth - Pale Communion

OhCarrots
August 20th 2013



335 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Yeah, this review's my first in a while, so I might be a little rusty. I'll eventually pick up steam again though

Aids
Contributing Reviewer
August 21st 2013



23798 Comments


I negged.

not cause of the rating though so when you run to the meds remember that at least one of the negs was cause the review is really bad!!

I wouldn't have posted anything but I didn't want you to delude yourself into thinking that it wasn't deserved.

ChopSuey
August 21st 2013



2392 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

"I wanna write a classic metal record"

-M.Shadows

OhCarrots
August 21st 2013



335 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

@Aids: Not sure how this was much different from the contrib reviews I was doing before I got banned, but ok

Kris.
August 21st 2013



12152 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

I negged.

not cause of the rating though so when you run to the meds remember that at least one of the negs was cause the review is really bad!!

I wouldn't have posted anything but I didn't want you to delude yourself into thinking that it wasn't deserved.




agreed. not very well written sorry necrobro!

OhCarrots
August 21st 2013



335 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Well on the plus side, at least I didn't post this under the Necrotica account. :]



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