Avenged Sevenfold is:
M. Shadows - Vocals
Zacky Vengeance - Guitar
Synyster Gates - Guitar
The Reverend - Drums
Johnny Christ - Bass
Clearly, AVENGED SEVENFOLD have thrown away the rulebook with WAKING THE FALLEN, their sophomore effort for Hopeless Records, AVENGED SEVENFOLD (or "A7X") shatter preconceptions of punk and metal.
Guitar World (March 2003) said the band "completely blur the line between metal and punk." The magazine also noted that the band would "be as comfortable on the Ozzfest stage as it is playing punk rock dives."
WAKING THE FALLEN eschews punk's loud-fast rules for extended songs that go well past the two-minute punk song, the three-minute rock song to the 6-7 minute opus. Punk rock with melody, metal's white-knuckle intensity and powerful wails combined with unflinching lyrics and an adventurous and epic spirit make the band stand truly alone. The 12 songs found on WAKING THE FALLEN include the blistering "Desecrate Through Reverence," the melodic punk metal anthem "Second Heartbeat" and the two-part, 14-minute epic, "I Won't See You Tonight."
The five piece hails from Orange County, California, influenced by everyone from Pantera, Metallica and Iron Maiden to Bad Religion, Misfits, Guns N Roses and NOFX. In addition, guitarist SYNYSTER GATES (an attendee of the Musicians Institute of Technology) and the rest of A7X confess a fondness for prog-metal musos Dream Theater and experimental rock group Mr. Bungle.
Produced by Mudrock with Fred Archambault, WAKING THE FALLEN marks the beginning of a bold new direction for punk rock and metal.
"At first, we were nervous about working with a producer because we didn't want our song structures changed. We didn't want to be formatted into three-minute, verse-chorus-verse songs. We told Mudrock that we want to sound epic, with big harmonies, have clean-sounding vocals like Iron Maiden's, and then go into heavy stuff like Pantera. We wanted to use all those influences and still make it work."
AVENGED SEVENFOLD formed when its members were still in high school. As M. SHADOWS explains, "We made our first record (Sounding The Seventh Trumpet) when we were 18 years old." Since then, they've made the road their home, hooking up with metal acts such as Shadows Fall and Mushroomhead and leaving their impression on the 2003 Vans Warped Tour. Charles Cross of Rolling Stone (August 7, 2003) anointed AVENGED SEVENFOLD the Warped Tour 2003 "Second-stage must-see," going on to call them "?
???a Goth-metal band with a singer who looks like Elvis and sounds like Axl Rose."
"We're not here to please only one segment of music fans. There's always going to be some segment of the audience that isn't expecting what we play," says M. SHADOWS. The band's killer solos (inspired by Slash of Guns N Roses and Pantera's Dimebag Darrell) paradoxically fit naturally with the vocals as SHADOWS moves effortlessly from deathly shrieks to movingly sung cascading melodies.
As befits the drama and darkness inherent in their songs, AVENGED SEVENFOLD's name is based on the philosophy "what comes around goes around," originating with the Biblical story of God's wrath upon Cain for killing his brother Abel. According to the book of Genesis, "And the Lord said until him, 'Therefore whoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold'." Despite the spiritual connotations of their name, AVENGED SEVENFOLD's music does not hinge on religion. At the same time, they are converting many with their unique sound.
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