Hail to the King (Avenged Sevenfold album)
|Hail to the King|
|Studio album by Avenged Sevenfold|
|Released||August 23, 2013|
|Recorded||2012-2013 at Can-Am Studios and Capitol Studios|
|Genre||Heavy metal, hard rock|
|Avenged Sevenfold chronology|
|Singles from Hail to the King|
Hail to the King is the sixth studio album by American band Avenged Sevenfold. It was released on August 23, 2013 in New Zealand and Australia, and was released on iTunes on August 27, 2013 and in North America on the same day. The album was produced by Mike Elizondo. This marks the first album with new drummer Arin Ilejay, who joined the band as a touring drummer in 2011 before becoming an official member in 2013. This is also the first Avenged Sevenfold album without any musical contributions from the band's late drummer, Jimmy "The Rev" Sullivan.
The album was a commercial and critical success, reaching number 1 on the Billboard 200. This marks Avenged Sevenfold's second album to top the Billboard chart as well as their first to reach number 1 in the UK, topping the UK Albums Chart. It also topped the Canadian, Brazilian, Finnish and Irish album charts. Also, the album spawned two number 1 singles on Billboard's Mainstream Rock, Hail to the King, and Shepherd of Fire. The former spent 11 weeks on the top of the chart. On July 16, 2014 the album was certified Gold by the RIAA for sales of over 500,000 copies.
On November 15, 2012, vocalist M. Shadows said that the band has been working on a new album since the recording of "Carry On" in August 2012. In December, the band said that it plans to begin recording material for their next album in January 2013, with release planned for later in the year. In January 2013 the band started recording their new album. The band started streaming snippets of their new album in May 2013 on their new radio app. It was on the app that Arin Ilejay was confirmed as an official band member and replacement of deceased drummer and founding member The Rev. In an interview with Metal Hammer about the new album, M. Shadows said that the album would sound more blues rock-influenced and more like classic rock and classic metal in the vein of Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin.
The band released four teasers on YouTube showing the band going through the recording process as well as providing snippets of songs off the album. On June 26, 2013, the band revealed the title, cover art and release date of album. In July, the band revealed the complete track list of the album.
Synyster Gates stated of the album: "I think our songwriting has improved by leaps and bounds. Sonically, this record is our biggest record by fucking far. When you turn this fucking thing on, it blasts your fucking head off." M. Shadows stated about the album's music: "On this record, we want a very bare bones, riff-oriented approach. Because it's really easy for us to say 'That melody would sound great here, throw this background vocal here, here's this harmony.' We had to restrain ourselves from doing that just to keep it more badass and just more straightforward rock."
Zacky Vengeance stated: "We styled everything back and went to the core of heavy metal instead of trying to overcomplicate it. We wrote and wrote, and felt we really achieved what we were going for ... we're really proud of what we've come up with."  Johnny Christ stated about the album's musical style in an interview with bravewords: "It's definitely us. It's just the next progression. It's probably the heaviest record that we've put out - in its own right. It's been a great response for the single (Hail to the King) so far, which I feel is a good way to see what the rest of the record is going to sound like. There will be some surprises in there for fans, but overall, I'm just excited." He also said the album is more groove metal-oriented.
Release and promotion
The same day, the band revealed a Limited Edition of Hail to the King for pre-order available on their website, much as they did with their previous album, Nightmare. The limited edition set included:
- Limited Edition “Treasure Box”: Antique gold colored embossed foil paper wrapped box featuring exclusive Hail To The King artwork
- Deluxe Hail To The King album on CD: Housed in a digi-pak with a card including a download to an extra bonus track
- Exclusive Canvas Print: 11.75″ x 11.75″ Canvas print of the Album Cover artwork, printed and rolled up to fit inside the treasure box
- Photo Book: 11.5″ x 7.125″ 20-page + cover perfect-bound soft-cover book featuring a sampling of photos of the band throughout the years
- Death Bat Challenge Coin: 2″ silver colored metal coin with a design stamped on front & back
- Death Bat Skeleton Key: 4.5″ silver colored metal skeleton key
- Digital Content: Instand download Hail To The King Single. Download of Hail To The King album on street date
- Pre-Sale access to the upcoming Avenged Sevenfold US Tour
On August 19, 2013, the album was made available for streaming on iTunes.
|The New Zealand Herald|||
|The Oakland Press|||
Hail to the King received positive reviews upon release. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream music critics, the album received an average score of 70, based on 9 reviews, which indicates "generally favorable" reviews. In a summary of his review, Chris Epting of Loudwire called the album "a modern metal classic that reflects the past while very much embracing the present." Artistdirect's Rick Florino stated, "Hail to the King doesn't just raise the bar for the band, but it raises the bar for everyone else to follow and compete with."
In a very positive review, Dom Lawson of The Guardian judged, "Stripped down to a core of thudding Sabbath-like grooves and brash, spiky vocal refrains, Avenged now sound every bit as vital and imperious as the bands they aspire to emulate." "Hail to the King represents a clean sweep, a divergence into classic metal and their best chance of hitting the heights they’ve always longed for," according to Q magazine. "The next giant crossover metal band has arrived," reviewer Tom Bryant concluded, giving the album a 4 stars out of 5 rating.
Not all critics were as enthusiastic. In a mixed review, Jason Lymangrover of Allmusic remarked, "Unfortunately, once they tried to take inspiration from other bands, they mimicked them so well that they lost their sense of identity in the process." He also accused "This Means War" of ripping off Metallica's song "Sad But True".
In a more negative review, Bradley Zorgdrager of Exclaim! said "After it concludes, Hail to the King makes it challenging for listeners to recall any specific moment, which defeats the purpose of a pop (metal) album." The album has received some criticism and was accused of ripping off other artists. The album also has been compared to bands like Iron Maiden, Metallica and Pantera.
In a blog post, Machine Head frontman Robb Flynn was also very critical of the album, denouncing it as a mere cover album and making several jokes about the similarities a selection of songs share with those by Metallica, Megadeth and Guns N' Roses. M. Shadows responded to the criticism saying that he "read it as a joke", but noted that "if it is a joke, it was kind of overboard".
The album sold 159,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at number one on the Billboard 200 chart.
All songs written by M.Shadows, Zacky Vengeance, Synyster Gates, and Johnny Christ.
|1.||"Shepherd of Fire"||5:25|
|2.||"Hail to the King"||5:06|
|4.||"This Means War"||6:10|
|Deluxe version bonus tracks|
|11.||"Hail to the King" (music video)||5:13|
- Avenged Sevenfold
- M. Shadows – vocals
- Zacky Vengeance – rhythm guitar
- Synyster Gates – lead guitar, additional vocals on "Planets"
- Johnny Christ – bass guitar
- Arin Ilejay – drums
- Session musicians
- Storm Lee Gardner - Vocals on "Requiem"
- Ran Jackson - Vocals on "Requiem"
- Jessi Collins - Vocals on "Requiem"
- Sharlotte Gibson - Vocals on "Requiem"
- Rick D. Waserman - Voice-over on "Requiem"
- Brent Arrowood - Sound fx on "Shepherd of Fire"
- Brian Haner, Sr – Outro guitar solo on "Coming Home"
- David Campbell – Orchestra arranger & conductor
- John E. Acosta – cello on "Requiem", "Crimson Day" and "Acid Rain"
- John Wittenberg, Josefina Vergara, Michelle Richards, Natalie Leggett, Sara Parkins, Songa Lee, Tereza Stanislav – violin on "Requiem", "Crimson Day" and "Acid Rain"
- John Fumo, Rick Baptist – trumpet on "Shepherd of Fire", "Requiem" and "Planets"
- Jeff Babko – piano on "Acid Rain"
- Alan Kaplan – trombone on "Shepherd of Fire", "Requiem" and "Planets"
- Douglas Tornquist – tuba on "Shepherd of Fire", "Requiem" and "Planets"
- Mike Elizondo – production, keyboards on "Crimson Day", "Heretic" and "Coming Home"
- Allen Wolfe – A&R
- Joanna Terrasi – A&R
- Brent Arrowood – assistant engineer
- Chris Sporleder – assistant engineer
- D.A. Frizell – illustrations, treatment
- Adam Hawkins – engineer
- Paul Suarez – pro-tools
- Cam Rackman – paintings, portraits
- Andy Wallace – mixer
- Bob Ludwig - mastering engineer
Charts and certifications
|Australian Albums (ARIA)||2|
|Austrian Albums (Ö3 Austria)||3|
|Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)||30|
|Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)||23|
|Brazilian Albums (ABPD)||1|
|Canadian Albums (Billboard)||1|
|Danish Albums (Hitlisten)||6|
|Dutch Albums (MegaCharts)||6|
|Finnish Albums (Suomen virallinen lista)||1|
|French Albums (SNEP)||25|
|German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)||5|
|Hungarian Albums (MAHASZ)||8|
|Irish Albums (IRMA)||1|
|Italian Albums (FIMI)||8|
|New Zealand Albums (Recorded Music NZ)||3|
|Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)||3|
|Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)||5|
|Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)||4|
|Spanish Albums (PROMUSICAE)||12|
|UK Albums (OCC)||1|
|US Billboard 200||1|
|Canada (Music Canada)||Gold||40,000^|
|United Kingdom (BPI)||Silver||60,000^|
|United States (RIAA)||Gold||500,000^|
^shipments figures based on certification alone
|Australia||August 23, 2013||Warner Bros. Records|
|New Zealand|
|United Kingdom||August 26, 2013|
|Canada||August 27, 2013|
|South Korea|
|United States|
- "Avenged Sevenfold Confirmed to Enter Studio Next Month". Blabbermouth. December 21, 2012.
- Epting, Chris (August 28, 2013). "Avenged Sevenfold, 'Hail to the King' - Album Review". Loudwire. Retrieved August 28, 2013.
- "Avenged Sevenfold - Hail to the King Review". About.com. Retrieved 31 August 2013.
- "Avenged Sevenfold - Hail to the King". www.killyourstereo.com. 25 August 2013.
- "AVENGED SEVENFOLD's 'Hail To The King' Certified Gold In U.S.". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved August 24, 2014.
- "Avenged Sevenfold Singer Says New Album Is 'Coming Along Nicely'". Blabbermouth.net. 2012-11-15. Retrieved 2012-11-17.
- "AVENGED SEVENFOLD Confirmed To Enter Studio Next Month". Blabbermouth.net. December 21, 2012. Archived from the original on December 21, 2012. Retrieved December 21, 2012.
- "M Shadows Wants The New Avenged Sevenfold Album To Be A Metal/Rock Classic". Metal Hammer. 2013-02-13. The new album has a lot more of a Sabbath and Zeppelin feel to it, ” he states. “There’s definitely more Sabbath in what we’re writing, and we’re proud of ‘Carry On,’ but this album is going to be on a whole new level. We’re shooting for late January, early February [to enter the studio] and to have the album out in the summer. I’m pretty sure that we’re looking to go overseas first, so you guys will be seeing it before everyone else... We’re going back to Sabbath stuff. We’re looking at blues chords they’re playing most of their stuff in. We’re listening to Zeppelin. We’re going backwards with what we want this record to feel like. I wanna write a classic metal record, a classic rock record in 2013.
- "Avenged Sevenfold Reveal Cover Art, Title, and Release Date of New Album". Revolvermag. Retrieved June 26, 2013.
- "AVENGED SEVENFOLD: New Album Title, Cover Artwork, Release Date Revealed". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved June 26, 2013.
- "AVENGED SEVENFOLD: Trailer For 'Hail To The King' Animated Series". BlabberMouth.
- "Avenged Sevenfold Singer Talks New Record: 'It's More Bada-s, Straightforward Rock'". Ultimate-Guitar.
- "Avenged Sevenfold on New Album: 'We Went to the Core of Heavy Metal'". Ultimate Guitar.
- Bowar, Chad (July 15, 2013). "Avenged Sevenfold, Deftones and Ghost B.C. to Embark on Fall 2013 U.S. Tour". Loudwire. Retrieved July 16, 2013.
- http://www.avengedsevenfold.com/hailtotheking/. Missing or empty
- "AVENGED SEVENFOLD: Entire 'Hail To The King' Album Available For Streaming". BlabberMouth.
- "Hail to the King Reviews". Metacritic.com. Retrieved 2013-08-30.
- Lymangrover, Jason (August 29, 2013). "Hail to the King - Avenged Sevenfold". Allmusic. Retrieved August 29, 2013.
- Slessor, Dan (August 27, 2013). "Avenged Sevenfold - Hail to the King". Alternative Press. Retrieved August 27, 2013.
- Florino, Rick (August 21, 2013). "Avenged Sevenfold "Hail to the King" Album Review – 5 out of 5 stars". Artistdirect. A Relative Media Company. Retrieved August 27, 2013.
- Zorgdrager, Bradley (August 23, 2013). "Avenged Sevenfold - Hail to the King". Exclaim!. Retrieved August 28, 2013.
- Lawson, Dom (August 22, 2013). "Avenged Sevenfold: Hail to the King – review". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved August 27, 2013.
- Kara, Scott (August 28, 2013). "Album review: Avenged Sevenfold, Hail to the King". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved August 28, 2013.
- Graff, Gary (August 26, 2013). "Listening Room: "Hall of Fame" puts Big Sean on the path to immortality". The Oakland Press. Retrieved August 28, 2013.
- Dolan, Jon (August 27, 2013). "Avenged Sevenfold, 'Hail to the King'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved August 27, 2013.
- Bryant, Tom. Q, November 2013. Record reviews. New releases. Avenged Sevenfold - hail to the King. P. 101
- "Review: Avenged Sevenfold - Hail to the King [Album]". AEaston. August 21, 2013.
- Machine Head’s Robb Flynn On ‘Hail To The King’: Who Knew That Rerecording Metallica Could Be Such A Hit?!”
- "AVENGED SEVENFOLD Singer Responds To MACHINE HEAD Frontman's 'Covers Album' Critique". BlabberMouth.
- "Avenged Sevenfold | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart. The Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold: Hail To The King" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
- "AVENGED SEVENFOLD's 'Hail To The King' Tops U.S. Chart". BlabberMouth.
- "Hail to the King (Deluxe Version)". iTunes. Retrieved 15 July 2013.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King". Australiancharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold - Hail To The King" (in German). Austriancharts.at. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King" (in Dutch). Ultratop.be. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King" (in French). Ultratop.be. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "CD - TOP 10 Semanal". (In Portuguese). Associação Brasileira dos Produtores de Discos. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Canadian Albums Chart for Avenged Sevenfold. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King". Danishcharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King" (in Dutch). Dutchcharts.nl. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King". Lescharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Longplay-Chartverfolgung at Musicline" (in German). Musicline.de. Phononet GmbH. Retrieved 2013-09-03.
- "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ – Magyar Hangfelvétel-kiadók Szövetsége". Mahasz.hu. LightMedia. Retrieved 2013-09-12.
- "GFK Chart-Track". Chart-Track.co.uk. GFK Chart-Track. IRMA. Retrieved 2013-08-29.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King". Italiancharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King". Charts.org.nz. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King". Norwegiancharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King". Swisscharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King". Swedishcharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold – Hail To The King". Spanishcharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Avenged Sevenfold Album & Song Chart History" Billboard 200 for Avenged Sevenfold. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2013-09-02.
- "Canadian album certifications – Avenged Sevenfold – Hail to the King". Music Canada.
- "British album certifications – Avenged Sevenfold – Hail to the King". British Phonographic Industry. Enter Hail to the King in the field Search. Select Title in the field Search by. Select album in the field By Format. Click Go
- "American album certifications – Avenged Sevenfold – Hail to the King". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH