Avenged Sevenfold have come crashing into the cover of Metal Hammer and for the ultimate celebration of all things A7X! We talk to every member, their families and people that know them best.
But that's not all, we've put together a world-exclusive tribute CD to Avenged Sevenfold from 12 bands across the world of heavy metal. Here, the bands explain why they’ve paid tribute to the Orange County legends, and the story behind the songs they’ve chosen.
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1. Fozzy – Shepherd Of Fire
Chris Jericho (vocals): “We wanted to cover something from Hail To The King, as the groove and vibe is much more in Fozzy’s wheelhouse than the more technical metal of other Avenged albums. When we chose Shepherd Of Fire, our mission was to stay true to the original, but ‘Fozzyfy’ it up. We wanted to make our bros in A7X proud... and we think we have done that!”
2. SHVPES – Scream
Griffin Dickinson (vocals): “Scream stood out as having the most scope to be SHVPESified. Avenged do a lot of back-to-back guitar harmony stuff, which isn’t very us, so we gutted that, translated it into a jazz section complete with trumpets, double bass and record scratches, then followed it with the moodiest little beatdown we could. It sounds like SHVPES X Avenged and we’re stoked with it!”
3. Betraying The Martyrs – Bat Country
Baptiste Vigier (guitars): “We were thrilled to be able to cover this track for the occasion; it’s one that inspired members of the band years before we were established. And what better song to showcase the shredding capabilities of our newest member, Steeves Hostin?! It is with great pleasure that we present to you both Bat Country and Mr Hostin!"
4. Upon A Burning Body – Remenissions
Danny Leal (vocals): “We’ve been fans of A7X since the first record, and we’re honoured to pay tribute to them. We wanted to pick a song that wasn’t a big single; as longtime fans, we want to showcase a song people may not be familiar with. We hope the band and people enjoy it. Thanks for the opportunity.”
5. Brutai – Almost Easy
Felix Lawrie (vocals): “Avenged Sevenfold were instrumental in the early development of us in Brutai as teenage musicians, and still are to this day. We hope we’ve done this great song some justice! Big thanks to Simen Sandnes for playing drums on this cover and our longtime producer Matt Hyde for bringing this song to life for us.”
6. Charcoal Tongue – Brompton Cocktail
Chris Mora (vocals): “I became obsessed with Avenged in the seventh grade; I had all their records on my iPod Nano and would watch the Live In The LBC DVD over and over so many times, I could probably recite the whole concert. Avenged have always pushed themselves to make amazing fucking songs and albums. Without time, I wouldn't be the musician I am today."
7. Harbinger – Burn It Down
Ben Sutherland (guitars): “We chose this because we thought it’d be a fun song to make our own, and it already has a breakdown! We added a few sections of our own, though, because we felt it needed another riff, and we wanted to do this excellent song justice.”
8. As Everything Unfolds – God Hates Us
Charlie Rolfe (vocals): “We chose this because it deserves just as much attention as the singles, yet still carries a lot of groove that would play to our strengths; not to mention it was a fitting song lyrically to tie in with our latest single, Centuries – it's almost as if it was meant to be!"
9. Skywalker – Afterlife
Jay Kutcher (vocals): “We love Avenged a lot, and we have loads of respect for their craft and energy. We knew this would be a massive challenge, as those guys are among some of the best professionals in the game. The lyrics are skilfully written and catchy, so it was fun to sing.”
10. Sworn Amongst – Second Heartbeat
Ashley Currie (guitars/vocals): “A7X are my favourite band; they’re the reason I’m in a band now. Second Heartbeat has lots of elements, but the epic chorus and fast melodic verses were the key components we wanted to transpose to this cover. Add the face-melting solo from our friend Kyle Ren [Galactic Empire], and we have something we’re really proud of!”
11. I Fight Bears – Unholy Confessions
Dan Blackmore (vocals): “My friend Daniel Porch, who died last December, introduced me to Unholy Confessions when we were first getting into metal. We covered it to honour him. We shifted the key, sped it up and contrasted the vocals between my harsh growls and [bassist/vocalist] Drew Hamley’s soft tones. Great track.”
12. Greyhaven – Hail To The King
Alex Hills (guitars): “This is a huge, stadium-sized anthem. Vocally, we made sure to keep it faithful to the original, but instrumentally our aim was to make it much heavier. The first time I played in front of anyone at school, I was covering Afterlife, and I got booed off, so it’s definitely surreal to be paying tribute to them on this CD with so many other incredible bands.”
The Avenged Sevenfold issue of Metal Hammer is out now and available to order online.