Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King

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One of the biggest issues of the music industry has always been its stars, especially in times of changes, when the old stars are getting close to calling it a day, and they need someone new from the younger generation to carry the flag. In the industry’s attempt to create something, or give a boost to somebody in order to cover the gaps we’ve seen, and listened to a lot of examples of bands and artists that started out with the best perspective only to end up as “has beens” or get out of the picture entirely. Avenged Sevenfold is a special case, since they came out with a sound of their own, and it was their good and hard work achieved to create a hype in the States and create a big notion around them. They became a huge name, they got massive fanbase, media coverage, glory, wealth, until they were stricken by tragedy with their original drummer’s, Jim Sullivan “The Rev”, sudden death. That setback didn’t seem to affect the band, personal and psychological aspect apart, since their popularity continued to rise impressively.

So, now on their first album of the new era they seem to go through an identity crisis, because wherever they give an interview they keep repeating that they want to make music like the one made by the bands they grew up with (like Maiden, Metallica, Guns’n’Roses) and attract even a bigger audience (that’s what we call mainstream, right?). Therefore, they decided to go back to their roots, change their style and release an album that reminds of a lot of the stuff that they allegedly inherited from their mentors. Of course, something like that had happened before with a lot of bands and artists that for several reasons, obvious or not, commercial, or artistic, changed their path in order to achieve greater success without avoiding the furious rants of their fans (does someone in particular come to mind?). What Avenged Sevefold are going to do from now on it remains to be seen, but the album we haven’t even mentioned yet is topping the charts worldwide, whatever that means nowadays anyway.

Finally, since this is a review for “Hail To The King” we have to admit that it’s not a bad album, but is way too flat for a band that got us used to its great inspiration and composition complexity. M Shadows is a great singer, and the rest are very good players, even on a more minimal kind of album. But, what’s important is that this album marks a very crucial point in the band’s career, which stands among the contemporary messiahs of today’s dying music industry, whereas at the same time brings it on critics’ and fellow musicians’ black list! What happens from now on will be very interesting…