Category: Avenged Sevenfold

SoCal rules on the charts: Avenged Sevenfold's 'Nightmare' a dream debut; Best Coast hits top 40

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Huntington Beach's Avenged Sevenfold confronted the unexpected passing last year of drummer James "The Rev" Sullivan on its recently released "Nightmare." The darkly personal hard rock song cycle has been embraced by fans, as "Nightmare" has given the locals its best-ever sales week on the U.S. pop charts. "Nightmare" lands at No. 1 this week, having sold 162,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan, to hold off another strong sales showing from Eminem's "Recovery."

Avenged Sevenfold has been on the upward trajectory since jumping to Warner Bros. in the mid-2000s, and it is one of the rare bands that continues to see sales increases with each album. "Nightmare" marks Avenged Sevenfold's first album since 2007's self-titled Warner Bros. effort, the act's second for the major, which debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 with 94,000 copies sold in its first week.That represented a major boost for the act. It's 2005 collection, "City of Evil," entered the chart at No. 30, with fewer than 35,000 first week sales. 

Avenged Sevenfold isn't the only SoCal group to post an impressive showing on this week's sales chart. Retro-pop act Best Coast, the indie faves of the moment, enter at No. 36 with "Crazy for You," an album that sold 10,000 copies in its debut week. The buzz on Best Coast's '50's-meets-Ramones-inspired sound began at the South by Southwest conference in Austin, Texas, in March, and has only increased in the weeks since.

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L.A. Times review of 'Nightmare' blasted as 'an insult to all' Avenged Sevenfold fans

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Avenged Sevenfold's latest album "Nightmare" was born during a time of vulnerability, M. Shadows tells the Times in Thursday's Calendar story. The frontman of the hard Huntington Beach-based rock outfit says that the album, completed after the sudden passing of 28-year-old drummer Jimmy "The Rev" Sullivan, who was found dead at his home in Huntington Beach, represents a frank outpouring of emotions.

 

"You can sit there and write about it all day, but if you haven't been through heartbreak, there's just a difference," Shadows says. "When I was writing lyrics, I didn't really care what I was saying; I just cared about what I was feeling. And I think we made the album at such a vulnerable time that it shows.

"A lot of people were like, 'Wow, you're sure getting over the death fast.' We were like, 'No, actually, we're not — we're bawling in the studio every day.' But if we did the record now, there'd be a lot less I'd be willing to put out there. You get more guarded as you realize what's going on."

Shadows details the making of the album in the Times piece, written by Mikael Wood, which includes thoughts from Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy, who was an idol of Sullivan's and completed the drum parts Sullivan had written for "Nightmare." 

 

The piece appears the same week that a Times review of the album has inspired a barrage of angry comments from Avenged Sevenfold fans on this blog. Here is an excerpt, written by frequent contributor Jeff Weiss:

Whether you appreciate the veteran hard rock/metal hybrid depends on your tolerance for spiraling guitars, avalanche drums and satanic screams. Or your inclination to the aesthetic spelled out in the video for lead single "Nightmare," with its bloody and cackling children, experimental surgeries and morbid obsessions. Consider it Edward Gorey as re-conceptualized by Hannibal Lecter and Korn.

The line that's generating the most anger is the closing one: "With imagery haunted by death and lyrical allusions to alienation and angst, Avenged Sevenfold's fifth full-length is almost impossible to appreciate unless you fit the prime demographic: tormented teenage boys."

Here's a brief sampling of the more than 100 comments we have received -- many unfit for publication -- in response to the review. Only the posted user names are shown. 

 

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