Metal Hammer Germany has given Avenged Sevenfold’s new album “Hail To The King” a 6 out of 7.
“It took the Californian guys six records to actually land here. While they tried it with coarse metalcore-underground sound with their first two records, there happened to be a huge change in atmosphere with the release of the impressive CITY OF EVIL (2005) and the band really managed to find their appointment in heroic sounds. Metallica, Maiden, Guns’n’Roses – hey, even a progressive Dream Theater touch found its little place in their extended pastiche profile.
A very welcomed evolution which scored continuous huge sales figures in the USA and even after the death of their drummer and songwriter, James Owen ‘The Rev’ Sullivan, they reached their completion with the posthumous paragon NIGHTMARE (with Mike Portnoy on drums). New chapter: HAIL TO THE KING. With ringing intro bells, as well as a new drummer, they go on a transatlantic storm course. Streamlined, A7X have thrown big parts of the more playful, multi-layered ballast over board. Yet better said, brought it to a luscious, compact minimum, to position themselves primarily between metal mainstream like Metallica (more) and 80s-Maiden (less).
Already the title single is with its malmsteen-ish classic runs, the marching sounds and its dramatic chorus, a future stadium filler par excellence. While ‘Doing Time’, as a last relict, brings up some USE YOUR ILLUSION-charm, ‘This Means War’ and ‘Crimson Day’ show more roughly while huge and uncolored “M” (like metal milestone of the 90s) release is being admired.
Exactly, Metallica’s black album is dripping as the main reference from songwriting to the sound out of every pore (though ‘Coming Home’ would be more of a 7th Son era b-side child). That’s probably how the original second grade comic cover got thrown off the display and moved away for a new black simplicity. Long story short, A7X have managed to distil the essence of metallic mass appeal, with only the best, borrowed, metal classic ingredients for the new millennium, pour it into a coherent, modern souped-up recor and, with that, score immensely. “
Translated and submitted by Tess.