All Hail!

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Nick Westrope

Hail to the King!

Nick Westrope, Writer

Last year, Avenged Sevenfold released their sixth studio album, titled Hail to the King. A quick glance at the album cover gives the impression that the band is reverting to the style of Waking the Fallen, but they’re going back even further, delivering music reminiscent of Metallica, Iron Maiden and AC/DC. That’s right, the 80’s.

Upon listening to the album, the first song, “Shepherd of Fire” immediately struck me as a song by an older rock/metal band, though I could not recall which one. The track sounded great overall, combining modern vocals and retro music.

“Hail to the King” came after, and for a moment I thought I was listening to AC/DC’s “Thunderstruck.” The two songs practically mirrored each other.

Later in the album, “This Means War” caught my attention. It began with a riff that sounded more like contemporary A7X, and suddenly, silence. Listening closely, I heard what sounded like two bombs going off in the distance. I listened for a third, but was instead met by a sudden downpour of drums and heavy guitar. A minute or so into the song, I could recognize Iron Maiden-esque sound, with very few contemporary elements. Nonetheless, it quickly became one of my favorite tracks on the album.

Near the end of the album, “Planets” quickly established itself as the heaviest song on the album, with prominent drums and bass guitar, and vocals that seemed impossibly deep. Near the middle of the song, I was again reminded of Synister Gates’ inhuman skill with a guitar. After a couple of repeats of the chorus, the track ended similarly to how it started.

Overall, Hail to the King is a great album that seamlessly combines the old and the new. Fans of Metallica and Avenged Sevenfold alike are guaranteed to enjoy the album. I personally think that it is one of the best albums to be released by the band and continue to look forward to what they put out next. Until then, Hail to the King!