I know there are already reviews of this album expressing that people think this is a classic, but I've been wanting to review for a while, and now is as good a time as any. Please don't shit
in the thread about that, or about them appearing on MTV. Thanks in advance.
Now for the review.
City Of Evil
kicks off with Beast and the Harlot
. The second single off this album, it starts off with a guitar lead backed with some piano and other effects. Shadows voice is triple tracked throughout the entire verse. The chorus is the opposite of verse, instead of a dark and gloomy almost haunting atmosphere it's uplifting. The solo in this song is great, Zacky and Synyster harmonize a few parts of it to. The intro becomes the outro of this song too. After some pick scrapping Beast and the Harlot
segues directly into Burn It Down
. Starting off with pick scrapes, it leads into a cool harmonized part reminiscent of Waking the Fallen's Eternal Rest
. Shadows vocals are double tracked throughout the whole chorus, and it's all harmonized adding extra power to it. There are a few breakdowns in Burn It Down
, and the solo is very noteworthy and fast.
With the fading outro Blinded in Chains
hits through the speakers. The opening riff kinda reminds me of the intro to Children of Bodom's In Your Face.
Another harmony part hits right after the intro. This song reminds me most of Chapter Four
with all the harmonies sounding very alike. The verses both consist of Shadows talking quickly in a low voice and singing over them. This is also a song where Johnny Christ really shines through, his bass is pretty audible for the most part, there is even a slight solo right before the outro to Blinded in Chains
. Bat Country
was the first single off of City Of Evil
, it's lyrically about Hunter S. Thompson and the movie Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. The guitar solo in this song is great, but it's my least favorite of A7X's. Their are a few clean breaks after the choruses that slow down the song, and add to the whole Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas acid trip theme. Trashed and Scattered
is the fifth track off of City Of Evil
. This song begins with a blistering guitar part, and again the bass is very prominent in the pre-chorus. This song is lyrically about all the press and magazines trying to talk crap about them in attempts to bring them down, which is appropriate considering all the flack they've been getting since the release of City Of Evil
. Trashed and Scattered
has a great lead part during the chorus, just like in And All Things Will End
, which shows they haven't completely abandoned their older style.
Seize the Day
much like Eternal Rest
from Waking the Fallen
this song signals a transition from the first half of City Of Evil
to the second half. Simply put Seize the Day
is a power ballad, it starts off with some acoustic guitar and Shadows, the electric guitar (played by Synyster) takes a back seat to the rhythm of the song. Still, the solo is mind blowing. I many other people I have talked to think it's the best on the album. Sadly however, most people overlook this track citing Shadows voice, someone even said he sounds like a dying animal. I see no problems however. Sidewinder
starts out with silence for a few moments, then the harmonized guitars come in with a simple lead pattern. the majority of this song contains some harmonized guitars, not as the forerunner of the song, but the background. Adding effect to it. The cool duel guitar battle half way through is amazing, and is of course harmonized showing that Synyster isn't the only good guitar player. The highlight of this song is definitely the outro though, the dueling acoustic guitar solo, you can't get much better then that.
The Wicked End
is simply put, about the end of the world. Some of the lyrics include,
Voice your prophecy, shed some light
Fell sorrow for mankids's chance to survive
Swallowed lies and swam in your own tears
A stab in the dark and it wounded our will
We won't be here tomorrow, hold on to me for one last time
This song starts off with an intricate bass and drum part, then quickly leads into some dueling guitars. Again like Sidewinder
this song is filled with harmonized guitars, that add to the atmosphere. A huge orchestral interlude ensues the middle few minutes of the song, complete with a full choir, and other various orchestral instruments it is the highlight of the song. The solo is also amazing however, a minute or so of Synyster pulling out all the tricks, from pinch harmonics to tapping this solo has it all. Overall this solo has a very aggressive feel, mainly due to the fast pace and drum's blast beats. Strength of The World
starts off completely different, with an acoustic guitar part playing arpeggios. Like The Wicked End
, Strength of The World
also has some orchestral instruments playing. The second the electric guitar kicks in the mood changes very much. It's still laid back but it's heavier and powerful. With some cool leads throughout it this song is my favorite from the album. It's incredibly epic. The soft melodic parts after each chorus with Shads singing
I've seen my family fade away, you've taken my whole life
There's nothing left to say
fit into place remarkably well. The one complaint most have about this song is the chorus, Shadows voice is really annoying, when he goes yeaheaheaheaheah, it really hits a nerve. But other than that no complaints.
starts out with a cool part, that reminds me very much of Pantera. This song is actually written in Dimebag's memory. Like Strength of the World
this song has some quiet moments, followed by hard hitting guitar and pummeling drums. The guitar leads in this song are excellent, some of my favorite from Synyster Gates and Zacky Vengeance. Shadows voice is lacking slightly though, his attempt at doing ohhs like choirs fail miserably. This song is my least favorite off the album, on saved by the lyrics and guitar leads. M.I.A.
. the final song off of City Of Evil
. It starts out slow, with the harmonizing of clean guitars. In this song Shadows sings about, his friends experiences during the Iraq War. Very reminiscent of Iron Maiden M.I.A.
is full of guitar leads, great vocals, amazing drums, but unlike Maiden inaudible bass. The verse reminds me of Hallowed Be Thy Name, with it's stop start pattern. The guitars seem to try to match the vocals almost, when Shadows sings the guitar adds some background leads that make it seem almost like their is more than one person singing. Most of the second half of M.I.A.
(excluding the clean outro) is guitar leads from both Synyster and Zacky. A choir enters near the end. The distorted guitars fade out and in come the clean ones again. Shadows vocals generate a lot of undeserved shit
at the end, they are a combination of his normal raspy talking voice and his singing, and it's supposed to be emotional. Some acoustic guitar, and City Of Evil
comes to a fading close.
- Great guitar work
- Unique in every way, from the lyrics to the instrumentation, all original
- Catchy, it hooks you upon first listen
- Most of the songs convey their meaning without being offensive.
- Not Waking the Fallen Part 2, City Of Evil shows the maturity level of A7X, that aren't just a one dimensional metal band.
- Not Waking the Fallen Part 2, they really changed their sound drastically, upsetting many of their old school fans.
- Long, this albums shortest song is just below the five minute mark, so if you're looking for some short catchy songs you'll be disappointed.
- The guitars are harmonized like crazy, this can be cool, but when overused it can come off as dull to some people.
Avenged Sevenfold is
M. Shadows - Vocals
The Rev - Drums
Synyster Gates - Guitar
Zacky Vengeance - Guitar
Johnny Christ - Bass