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Avenged Sevenfold

Avenged Sevenfold, also known as A7X, is a hard rock and heavy metal band from Huntington Beach, California, United States.

Biography

Early Years

The band was formed in 1999. Avenged Sevenfold's first album, Sounding the Seventh Trumpet, was recorded when the band members were eighteen years old. It was originally released on their first label, Good Life Recordings. After lead guitarist Synyster Gates joined the band, the introductory track "To End The Rapture" was re-recorded with Gates playing, and the album was re-released on Hopeless Records. Their follow-up album, entitled Waking the Fallen, was also released on Hopeless Records and was awarded a positive rating in Rolling Stone magazine. Shortly after its release, Avenged Sevenfold were signed to Warner Bros. Records.

Mainstream Success

City of Evil, the third album which was released on June 7, 2005, strayed from metalcore, and instead headed a little more towards heavy metal and added a harder rock sound with influences ranging from various bands. During the recording of City of Evil, M. Shadows' vocal styling changed to focus more on melodic singing rather than hardcore screaming. Some cite the change in vocal style as consequence of vocal chord damage (that resulted in subsequent surgery) during a tour supporting Waking the Fallen. Although Shadows acknowledges the damage and surgery, he says that the change in vocal style was not a result. In their new DVD "All Excess", Mudrock, producer of Avenged's second and third albums, said prior to Waking the Fallen, Shadows had stated that he wanted a CD with half-screaming, then one with no screaming, which was achieved in City of Evil. But he maintains that he's able to scream even better than before since the surgery and training with vocal coach Ron Anderson, who worked with various artists, from Axl Rose, to Kylie Minogue, and Chris Cornell.

Their song "Blinded In Chains" was used in the soundtrack for the video games Need for Speed: Most Wanted and Arena Football. "Bat Country" was used in the soundtracks for SSX on Tour, NHL 06 and Madden 06, following in the footsteps of "Chapter Four" which had also been on the soundtrack for NHL 2004, Madden 2004 and NASCAR Thunder 2004. The song "Beast and the Harlot" was in the soundtrack for Burnout Revenge. All the above games, not coincidentally, are produced by various divisions of Electronic Arts. "Beast and the Harlot", covered by a band working for RedOctane, also appears in Guitar Hero II, released in November 7, 2006. The song "Burn it Down" is featured on the October 24, 2006 release of the Saw III soundtrack. At the 2006 MTV Video Music Awards, Avenged Sevenfold received the award for best new artist in a video. They took the award over several other artists like Angels and Airwaves, James Blunt, and Panic! At the Disco.

Recent Events

In 2006 A7X did a worldwide tour, including the US, England, Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. After canceling fall and winter 2006 tour dates, the band announced that they were planning their fourth studio album, a self-titled album. M. Shadows has stated that it will not be a City of Evil Part 2 or Waking the Fallen Part 2, but he says it will attract fans of both original albums. They say it will be somewhat of a surprise to their fans. To "tide fans over" until the release of their newest album, tentatively scheduled for October 16, 2007, Avenged Sevenfold released their first DVD, All Excess, on July 17, 2007. The DVD includes a documentary and live footage dating back to 1999 along with music videos and the making of the Seize The Day music video. It is an all regional DVD and is approximately 156 minutes long. Before the actual release of the DVD, there were several theatrical premiers around the United States on July 16th, 2007. Avenged has stated that the mixing of the new album will be finished by early August 2007, and the band will start their first tour dates of 2007, playing an Asian tour with stops in Indonesia, Singapore, and Japan.

Band Name and Topics

The band's name is a reference to the book of Genesis in the Bible where Cain is sentenced to live in exile for the crime of murdering his brother. God marked him so that none would kill him on account of his sin; the man who dared to kill Cain would have "vengeance taken upon him sevenfold." The title of Avenged Sevenfold's song "Chapter Four" references Genesis 4:15, the chapter of the Bible in which the story of Cain and Abel takes place. The song's subject also appears to be this story. "Beast and the Harlot", yet another song derived from the Bible, comes from the book of Revelation only it is written in the first person and refers to the punishment of Babylon the Great, world empire and seat of false religion. Another biblical reference occurs in the song "The Wicked End". In the song, several times it is said "dust the apple off, savor each bite, and deep inside you know Adam was right." making reference to Eve eating the forbidden fruit. Although the band's title and members' stage names make references to religion, Shadows stated in an interview that they are not a religious band. "Anyone that read the lyrics and really knew anything about us, they would know we're not promoting either", he said. "That's one thing about this band that I love is that we never really shove any kind of, like, political or religious beliefs on people. We just, the music's there to entertain and maybe thought-provoking on both sides, but we don't try to, like, really shove anything down anyone's throat. There's too many bands that do that nowadays, I think."

Band Members

Current Members

  • M. Shadows - lead vocals, keyboard, guitar (1999-present)
  • Synyster Gates - lead guitar, piano, additional vocals (2001-present)
  • Zacky Vengeance - rhythm guitar, additional vocals (1999-present)
  • Johnny Christ - bass guitar, additional vocals (2002-present)
  • The Rev - drums, piano, additional vocals (1999-present)

Former Memebers

  • Justin Sane - bass guitar (1999-2001)
  • Dameon Ash - bass guitar (2001-2002)
Chart Positions Album
US Hot 100US Mainstream RockUS Modern RockUK Singles Chart
2001"Warmness on the Soul"----Warmness on the Soul
2003"Unholy Confessions"----Waking the Fallen
2005"Burn It Down"---#92City of Evil
2005"Bat Country"#60#2#6#84City of Evil
2006"Beast and the Harlot"-#19#40#44City of Evil
2006"Seize the Day"-#17--City of Evil
2007"Walk"---iTunes download

Videography

DateTitleNotesLink
March 2001Warmness on the SoulProfessional video(Video)
March 6, 2004Unholy ConfessionsLive video with dubbed music(Video)
June 2005Burn it DownLive video with dubbed music 
July 28, 2005Bat CountryProfessional video directed by Marc Klasfeld(video from Bedlam Society)
February 6, 2006Beast and the HarlotProfessional video directed by Tony Petrossian 
June 30, 2006Seize the DayProfessional video directed by Wayne Isham
July 17, 2007All ExcessDVD featuring a documentary, live performances,
music videos, and outtakes.

Compilations

DateTitleLabelSong/s
2002Plea for Peace/Take Action! Vol. 2Subcity Records"Turn the Other Way"
2003Take Action! Vol. 3Subcity Records"Chapter Four"
2003Warped Tour 2003 CDSideOne Dummy RecordsDarkness Surrounding
2003Metal=Life CD/DVDSubcity Records"Unholy Confessions" & Video
2003Operation: Punk Rock FreedomHopeless Records / Subcity Records"Chapter Four" & "Darkness Surrounding"
2004Hopelessly Devoted to You Vol. 4Hopeless Records / Subcity Records"Second Heartbeat" & "Darkness Surrounding"
2005Hopelessly Devoted to You Vol. 5Hopeless Records / Subcity Records"Chapter Four" & "Eternal Rest (Live)" (feat. "Unholy Confessions" video on Enhanced CD)
2005Masters of Horror Soundtrack "Beast and the Harlot" (live)
2006Kerrang! - High Voltage: A Brief History of Rock "Walk" (Pantera cover)
2006Hopelessly Devoted to You Vol. 6Hopeless Records / Subcity Records"Darkness Surrounding" & "Unholy Confessions" (feat. "Unholy Confessions" video and "We Come Out at Night" live at Warped Tour 2003 video on included DVD)
2006Kerrang! - Kerrang! Awards 2006 "Beast And The Harlot"

Guest Features in other artist's songs

  • Savior, Saint, Salvation - Bleeding Through Featuring M. Shadows
  • The River - Good Charlotte Featuring M. Shadows and Synyster Gates
  • Buffalo Stampede - Cowboy Troy Featuring M. Shadows
  • Falling Away From Me - Korn featuring M. Shadows who temporarily replaced Jonathan Davis (due to medical attention)
  • Like Always - A Permanent Holiday featuring M. Shadows