City of Evil, the latest release from Avenged Sevenfold features 11 songs that you will fall in love with if you are a fan of Iron Madden, Metallica, Guns n Roses, and every band that makes you want to put your horns in the air and bark at the moon.
The road for Avenged Sevenfold-or A7X-has had its ups and downs. The band has had to battle a few demons while climbing their way to the top of Metal Mountain but alas they have reached the peak.
Lead singer M.Shadows recently busted a blood vessel in his throat which put his singing career in jeopardy. But with determination and the help of a vocal coach-who once trained Axel Rose-M.Shadows strengthned his voice and now rocks harder than ever before.
With two CDs under their belt and a spot on the warped tour the last four years, A7X have spent an extraordinary amount of time and effort perfecting their sweet metal opus that is City of Evil.
The first thing I noticed when placing this CD into my car stereo is its length. This record runs 72min and 53sec. long. That kind of length says this band is confident in their music.
“Beast and the Harlot” is the first track on City of Evil. If your ears have never been exposed to Avenge Sevenfold, this song is the utmost of introductions. It features what every great metal song should such as-guitar solos, Easter candy sweet vocal harmonies, devastating double bass pedals, and of course, lyrics pertaining to evil.
I enjoyed every second of this song, and could not wait to hear how A7X would follow up a 5 min and 40 sec malevolent metal explosion that is track one.
Just then I was confronted with “Burn it Down,” which is a song about distrust and deception. “Burn it Down” features all of the ingredients to a metal masterpiece. It even has a few sprinkles on top-which would be the references to horsemen and royalty of course.
With pounding drums and commanding chords”Burn it Down” flows right into “Blinded In Chains”. Blinded in chains is a politically driven song with passionate lyrics about war, the government and organized religion.
With lyrics such as, “And as clowns you follow suit behind the blood between the red and white and blue” Avenged Sevenfold shows where they stand on warfare and politics.
Spewing their metallic mayhem, Avenged Sevenfold-or A7X-hold strong through the next two songs on City of Evil. Realize that if they sustain the pace they are at any longer, A7X would make their listeners’ heads explode due to Metallic overload.
So on track six titled “Seize the Day” A7X slows down to expose their softer side. This track confronts the after life and the fact that we are all going there. But what lies on the other side of death?
The next two tracks show off further diversity of A7X. Track 7 titled “Sidewinder” is laced with piano, and at five minutes the mood of the song starts to change into a bright flamenco flame.
Then next song, “The Wicked End,” also has a duel personality. The first half of this track is classic A7X. It features wicked dueling guitars and lyrics of death and a world ending prophecy.
The second half of “The Wicked End” takes a turn that starts off sounding like the beginning to a dark Tim Burton Movie featuring choir boys and a full orchestra.
After the conclusion of “The Wicked End” I am confronted with what starts off like a western outlaw song. It’s dusty and dry, thoughts of rattlesnakes and tumbleweeds fill my psyche. Then suddenly I’m pulled from the scorching desert and placed in a commanding song regarding revenge.
The next song titled “Betrayed” was written in memory of Darrell “Dimebag” Abbott who was best known for performing in the band Pantera. Abbott was murdered while performing on stage in 2004. “Betrayed” features lyrics that let you know that A7x dearly misses Abbott.
The last track on City of Evil is titled “M.I.A.” This song is about wartime bloodshed. “M.I.A.” paints a factual picture of war and brings to the forefront the certainty of wartime casualties. This track is a strong track and provides the right amount of closer to this record.
The music on City of Evil is above and beyond anything expected from modern bands. The lyrics are brutally honest and hold strong throughout the entire recording. I highly recommend this record. Without it you will have a void in your music collection that can be filled by no other.