Avenged’s stage set was phenomenal, featuring large wrought-iron looking gates replete with skeletons, some of them impaled on the fence posts. Stone steps made up the drum riser and stone columns offered giant flaming torches. The backdrop changed scenes to include a spooky mansion and a winged skeleton overlooking the stage.
As the band emerged with the title track to the new release, “Nightmare,” a man dropped from the rafters and dangled from a noose. “Doctors” wheeled out a stretcher and removed the “body” before the second song.
Avenged’s double bass drum and heavy guitars evoke a true classic metal sound, a la old-school Metallica. Singer M. Shadows has a changeable voice that makes one song sound distinctly different from the next, which he made evident on “Buried Alive” and “Beast and the Harlot.”
The band took a moment to remember their late drummer, Jimmy “The Rev” Sullivan, who died at the end of 2009 from an overdose. Dream Theater’s Mike Portnoy has successfully taken the reins.
“So Far Away” was a touching tribute, with M. Shadows calling on the fans to raise their cell phones and lighters to the sky. The place was ablaze in honor of Sullivan.
Avenged finished up their 60-minute show with “Almost Easy,” which fired up the crowd even more.