Huntington Beach, California Metal band Avenged Sevenfold have released their 7th studio album ‘The Stage’ today, October 28, 2016. After a purposely faked ‘leak’ from Fozzy singer Chris Jericho that hinted at a December 9th release date, Avenged Sevenfold have decided to shock fans and drop the entire album without warning.
“Everyone else is dropping the breadcrumbs, having four or five singles before their record comes out. It completely takes away the mystique of the record; by the time it actually comes out, you’ve already done 50 interviews about what the record’s about and is going to sound like. It’s 2016; people’s attention spans are so short at this point, who has time for three months of lead-up?” – said frontman M. Shadows on the surprise release to Rolling Stone.
Avenged Sevenfold are back and they are here to educate metalheads on the dangers of artificial intelligence, nanobots and how creating powerful computers may eventually lead to the dawn of a new age where humans worship electronics. In other words they’ve created a lengthy, trippy, masterful effort in ‘The Stage’ that tackles several scientific themes and even features a voice-over cameo from the world’s smartest man Neil DeGrasse Tyson.
‘The Stage’ is unlike any other previous Avenged Sevenfold effort but if you’ve been a fan since the band’s earliest days then you won’t be put off by the complex arrangements on their 7th effort. If anything – you’ll probably be blown away by how much work they’ve put into these songs. Tracks like ‘Creating God’ sound like classic ‘Alice in Chains’ while the title track would make Dream Theater jealous. There’s a broad range of influences to be found here that Avenged Sevenfold really dug into in creating such an ambitious album.
“The album is talking about things that are right around the corner that could potentially be changing the world. We have this yearning to know the answers to the big questions about space and why we’re here; we can’t evolve fast enough to figure these answers out on our own, but we can do it through artificial intelligence.” – said frontman M. Shadows on the surprise release to Rolling Stone.
I think this might be my favorite Avenged Sevenfold record since ‘City of Evil’, in that I’m a sucker for complex and longer songs that take fans on a complete journey. Synyster Gates and Zacky Vengeance are delivering their best guitarwork to date here both in terms of the solos and quieter moments as the songs swoop effortlessly between the eerie calm and explosive. I do wish there would be more screaming, but — it ain’t happening dude. I’ve learned to deal with it – Shadows ain’t going all out ever again – or we won’t have a band with him in it anymore. It happens – shit happens medically and we need to move on. I think I finally have and learned to accept that. We always have ‘Waking The Fallen’ to listen to anyway. But in the meantime – take a trip with ‘The Stage’ – it’s a weird but fascinating listen.