Reviewing bands I’m unfamiliar with is not without some degree of difficulty. This is especially true for the new A7X album. I decided to do some research on their older music to give myself a better perspective. It must be said: Hail To The King does not, in my opinion, feel as powerful or agressive as their signature sound.
This is not to say that the new album isn’t any good. I am a firm believer in musicians working to try new things and even revamping their sound a little bit. However, HTTK sounds more like Queensryche than A7X to me. The influence seems so heavy that it pushes their more signature sound into the background. My opinions have been confirmed by A7X fans who have echoed the same opinions. They are unhappy with the new album because it doesn’t ring true to their more punk rock roots. The songs that sound the most like their typical sound are Doing Time and This Means War. Even so, these songs still do not seem to have the heart and emotion that one would expect out of A7X.
As a “virgin” A7X listener with no nostalgic attachment to their older music, the album is solid. The intros to each song are somewhat lengthy but are lyrically sound. It’s something I could listen to, but not on repeat. It’s not really an album I would have a craving to put on, but is something I would listen to if it happened to come on. I honestly couldn’t say whether or not this album is going to leave it’s mark on music history. It may very well be just a blip on the radar. No matter what happens, hopefully A7X learns from this album and decides to tap back into their musical roots when they head back into the studio to work on their next release.
1. “Shepherd of Fire”
2. “Hail to the King”
3. “Doing Time”
4. “This Means War”
6. “Crimson Day”
8. “Coming Home”
10. “Acid Rain”
11. “Hail to the King” (music video)
12. “St. James”
Avenged Sevenfold – Hail to the King
Hail To The King
Avenged Sevenfold – Shepherd of Fire
Shepherd of Fire