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19 June 2024

Avenged Sevenfold: ‘We Had A Bit Of An Identity Crisis’

Avenged Sevenfold
press/Brian Cattelle
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Avenged Sevenfold guitarist Zacky Vengeance has spoken to NME about coming back with polarising new material and celebrating classic albums.

Vengeance was interview shortly before headlining this year’s Download festival. “It just feels good to be here after so many years,” he said. “Because when you’re home and working on an album that isn’t finished, you have a lot of ‘what ifs’ in regards to how the future looks. We don’t operate on a schedule. We don’t know what’s gonna happen. So the fact that we’re here now feels really good. But until we hit that last note on stage, it’s not gonna feel completely great because there’s a lot of nerves involved. We’re still humans! Definitely happy to be here though.”

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Noting that it had been a year since the release of latest album Life Is A Dream…, Vengeance reflected, “It has been an amazing response, but probably not for the reasons that bands would typically say. It has been the exact response that we set out to achieve which is to be polarising and create something that a lot of people didn’t know that they wanted. For us, that makes the best art because people expect a certain thing from the bands they like. But for us it was about creating something that they don’t know that they need in their lives… and honestly that pisses some people off too! But we’ve always been that way. We’ve always done that.

“At this point in our life, to come back at it being a little bit older and still be able to achieve that, it’s been awesome. It hasn’t been for everyone and some people have said it’s the worst album they’ve ever heard, but also some have said it changed their life. If you’re just running through the motions, then I don’t think you’re succeeding as an artist.”

When reminded that classic albums City Of Evil and Nightmare will enjoy anniversaries next year he suggested the band plan to celebrate them, “I think those albums are really monumental and fans have grown with them. They’ve meant a certain thing to people at a certain place in their life, so I think it’s important that we do something.”

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