AVENGED SEVENFOLD – THE STAGE
Released: 28 October 2016
℗ 2016 Avenged Sevenfold
- The Stage
- Sunny Disposition
- God Damn
- Creating God
- Roman Sky
- Fermi Paradox
The title track opens this amazing journey in a distinct Avenged Sevenfold air of foreboding with shred and double kick fury before we burst into the raw excitement that is The Stage.
What an apt name for such a soaring sensation of an album. This entire work is an exploration of Avenged Sevenfold’s contemporary capacity for musical magnificence.
One of those benchmark albums that accurately represents the journey of a truly sensational outfit. The influences driving individual protagonists to reach even greater heights of brilliance. The determination to reach new heights of masterful skill. You can imagine members of the group exploring, improving, improvising and refining until the eventual reunion returns them together for the thrilling construction. We are hereby the recipients of something wonderous.
The title track offers all we, AS admirers hold dear, but with so much more. 8min30sec of stunning introduction, finalised by a lulling back to a relaxed state courtesy of Il Mariachi.
But the second track in Paradigm perfectly lowers us from relaxation into an air of looming malevolence, Zacky Vengeance keeping us aloft the harm in calm delivery, all the while. That is until the one minute mark when all vocal fury is unleashed. Superb lyrics and awesome instrumental accompaniment representative of the emotional journey.
The contribution of each member is nothing short of monumentally astounding.
Sunny Disposition. What an apt title. Vocally, instrumentally and lyrically. Just brilliant and the shredding. Oh the shredding, A timely offering of God Damn is coincidentally met with that exact exclamation. Wow.
On first listen, I must admit to holding my breath for a track as outstanding as Shepherd Of Fire, which never appeared. For me at least, SOF sets the bar extremely high as an album highlight, but before the first three tracks are completed, I blissfully reach the realisation that this entire album has seen the band reach an unprecedented level of excellence. Each track is its own journey, but all are also thoroughly superb. Therefore trying to find a single highlight becomes superfluous. Each journey carrying its own unique appeal but with the distinct Avenged Sevenfold sound firmly embedded.
Creating God. No prizes for guessing folks, but constructed so very well and performed brilliantly.
The delivery is softened with Angels, but not the intensity. Emotionally evocative as one explores further and Zacky holds nothing back to ensure the message is conveyed with an exact measure of angst. One of those magnificent works that is a great track to simply appreciate on face value, but also one that will mean so very much to so many. Superb.
Simulation is perfectly placed subsequent to Angels and is representative of how much attention was afforded track sequence. Calm and fury ebbs and flows from quiet ripples to crashing waves of punishing, pounding, furious anger until we cosmically descend to our unavoidable finale. Perhaps a cosmic coffin slammed shut, but thankfully we can draw breath and proceed on, resurrected by Higher. Amazing stuff Avenged Sevenfold. What a journey.
Glancing at the track listing, each of the songs look quite long, but when you listen through, they do not sound that way at all. Instead, they are completed to utter perfection. All are obviously representative of the bands vision for each element and recorded, mixed and produced without compromise.
This is album is certainly on my list of must haves, clearly catagorised under ‘Tremendous Representations of Progression, Growth and Excellence’.
An album I will enjoy repeatedly, but also suffer the agony of delay. The wait to speak to the band and explore insights into this glorious creation. The unavoidable agitation of awaiting news of a tour and hearing these gems live. In one sentence, an exhilarating journey through a wondrous collection of brilliant creations.
Roman Sky provides string section serenade, acoustic guitar delivery with intermittent occasions of soaring, monumental and glorious highlights. Brilliant delivery.
Fermi Paradox is such an epic journey crammed into such a short slice of ones life. Absolutely breathtaking. Every element just perfect.
Exist is fifteen minutes forty of a truly gargantuan album finale. This is simply beyond my vocabulary. Any attempt of mine to describe something so monumental would fail dismally. Instead, I leave this to the individual. Revel in the majesty and might, mouth agape in bewildered awe. Make what you will of the meaning behind the journey upon which you will embark. Snapped to and fro from the fantasy by power and Avenged Sevenfold musical prowess. Rage, refrain, relax and rejoice in rebellious reverence. It all lies herein. Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson orates a challenging accompaniment, eliciting thoughtful pondering at the very least. Perhaps huddled, shivering, frightened to the core through challenge to all you hold true. Perhaps left in dismay of our lack of significance on an astronomical scale as we scurry about our self-important existence. Perhaps a flash of self-awareness or a moment of cerebral sobriety brought about by bewildered awe. All is yours to explore. Avenged Sevenfold impart, nay manifest to our aural amazement, something truely astronomical.