by Aeti Amira
Avenged Sevenfold(A7X) was formed in 1999 by high school friends Matthew Sanders(vocals), Matt Wendt(bassist), Zachary Baker(rythm guitarist) and Jimmy Sullivan(drums). They found their lead guitarist Brian Haner Jr. shortly after that. Later in 2000, Wendt was replaced by Justine Sane(2000-2001) and Dameon Ash(2001-2002) who is lastly replaced by their current bassist, Jonathan Seward. Sanders came up with the name Avenged Sevenfold(A7X) based on the story of Cain and Abel from The Bible. Then, in 2001 they went to the recording studio and created their debut album, Sounding the Seventh Trumpet which includes two demos they released earlier in 1999 and 2000. Since then, A7X has released another three albums: Waking the Fallen(2003), City of Evil(2005) and a self-titled album in 2007.
Their first album, Sounding the Seventh Trumpet was released on January 31, 2001 and re-released on March 19, 2002 when Haner joined the band. Recorded in Westbeach, California, USA, this album was produced by Donnell Cameron and A7X under Good Life Recordings and it consists of 13 tracks. All the songs and lyrics in this album were written by A7X themselves are metalcore except for “Streets” and “Warmness on the Soul”. There is not much singing, only screams and growls in the other songs.
Later on August 26, 2003, their second album, Waking the Fallen was released by Hopeless Records. This 12-track album was the last album to feature metalcore sound and the first one to feature their new bassist, Jonathan Seward and the full current line-up. The album received positive feedback both by the fans and the media. Having sold 370,000 copies worldwide, it garnered a spot in the Billboard and also being compared with the big names in music industry such as Iron Maiden, NOFX, Mettalica and the Misfits, just to name a few. The exposure on this album also lead them to a record deal with Warner Bros. Records.
After that, A7X came up with their 11-track album, City of Evil on June 7, 2005. This is their first album under the label Warner Brothers and they came up with new genre, heavy metal and ditched the metalcore sounds. This album is known because of the new vocal style, where the screaming took a backseat, and it’s all singing. This is also when their fanbase grew tremendously and this can be seen when their album went gold in January 2006 with 1,500,000 copies sold worldwide and gain #30 spot on the Billboard Top 200. Their single, “Bat Country” was one of the breakout singles in 2005, reaching #2 on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Charts, #6 on Billboard’s Modern Rock Charts, and #1 on MTV’s Total Request Live. The album also received positive review on their guitar work by Rolling Stone and All Music Guide magazines. Not only that, this album was also ranked #63 on Guitar World’s “100 Greatest Guitar Albums of All-Time,” besides winning the title “Best New Artist” at MTV’s Video Music Awards, beating out artists like Rihanna, Panic at the Disco, and Chris Brown.
Their latest studio album, Avenged Sevenfold was released on October 30, 2007 under Warner Bros. Records. The album which was recorded in Los Angeles, California and produced solely by themselves has 10 tracks includes the singles “Critical Acclaim”, “Almost Easy”, “Afterlife”, “Dear God” and “Scream”, all gained spots in various charts. Having sold over 1,000,000 copies worldwide, this album debuted at #4 on the Billboard 200 Chart and certified Gold by the RIAA. The album won the Kerrang! Awards Best Album-award in 2008 although it received mixed reviews by fans and the media regarding their alteration in musical style.
The band did the Warped Tour from 2003-2005, and many of their own headlining tours covering the United States, Europe, Japan, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand. Their success also gained them an invitation to play at Ozzfest Tour in 2006 on the main stage alongside other well known bands such as DragonForce, Lacuna Coil, Hatebreed, Disturbed, and System of a Down.They are currently still touring the Europe.
A Piece of Heaven’s music video.
Hope this will give you some insights into this great band!
All pictures taken from Flickr.com