Wednesday, September 14, 2011

REVIEWS: AVENGED SEVENFOLD - NIGHTMARE

"Nightmare"
Artist: Avenged Sevenfold
Title: Nightmare
Year: 2011
Genre: Hard Rock
Rate: 7,5

Review: Avenged Sevenfold. This name is quite often synonymous with generic, underwhelming, and other unlikable characteristics. Past albums from this band have always lacked something, and one of these shortcomings is the ability to successfully deliver emotion through their music. This is something Avenged Sevenfold has nearly always failed at, with one exception (I Won’t See You Tonight, Part 1). Something just clicks with this album, and various emotions seep throughout most songs, whether it is anger and angst (God Hates Us), melancholy (Victim and Tonight the World Dies), or reflection (So Far Away).
On the other hand, the overall songwriting has matured greatly on “Nightmare” since the underwhelming self-titled album. Not every song is in generic verse-chorus structure, and while choruses are present, the songs do not always follow a formulaic structure. Lyrics are far superior to their previous effort, as they tend to focus on the loss of band-mate and best friend “The Rev.” As a result, the lyrics are very inspired and sound genuine, except for a few moments (title track “Nightmare”). Most importantly, M. Shadows cuts down on the nasal-whine he has become infamous for, resulting in his best performance since Waking the Fallen.
Another thing Avenged Sevenfold has improved on dramatically is song diversity. Every song sounds completely unique, and it’s near impossible to confuse one track for another. In fact, nearly every musical influence you can think of finds its way onto “Nightmare”, including jazz, progressive rock, death metal, pop rock, and even neoclassical music! Unlike the self-titled album, however, the abundance of influences enhances the album rather than detracting from it. The album never feels bloated, as all of the influences help to feed the band’s emotion to the listener, rather than for the sake of just being there. Surprisingly, through the variety of influences, Avenged Sevenfold managed to create a unified atmosphere that pulls the listener in and never lets go. It’s truly an experience that must be experienced for yourself. Anyone knows it’s hard to explain the atmospheric feelings that bands like Opeth produce.
Flaws are not exempt, however. The first half of the album is more formulaic than the latter half, and falls a bit short. Sometimes Avenged Sevenfold seems to have overlooked verses in exchange for bombtastic choruses, which inevitably results in some annoyingly generic moments. However, these flaws are miniscule in the face of numerous positives that make this album quite excellent.

Tracklist: 1. Nightmare; 2. Welcome to the Family; 3. Danger Line; 4. Buried Alive; 5. Natural Born Killer; 6. So Far Away; 7. God Hates Us; 8. Victim; 9. Tonight the World Dies; 10. Fiction; 11. Save Me.


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