Multi-platinum headliners Avenged Sevenfold (comprised of M. Shadows, Synyster Gates, Zacky Vengeance, Johnny Christ and Brooks Wackerman) released their highly anticipated eighth album, Life Is But a Dream… this week via Warner Records.
This genre-bending, bold and unnerving collection is their first full-length since 2016, and features the lead single “Nobody,” which has secured its place in the Top 5 at Rock Radio. A7X dig deep into the components that elicit the strongest emotions, toggling between the light and the dark in refreshingly strange ways. Transitions and tempo changes shred the rulebook, but there’s method to the madness.
UK Fans can win an all-expenses paid trip (including 3 nights hotel) to New York to see the band play at Madison Square Garden on June 23rd by visiting the band’s UK store before 11a.m 7th June to pre-order the album HERE.
Written and recorded over the span of four years, Life Is But a Dream… is designed to provoke and inspire, courageously broadening the new wave of American heavy metal sound pioneered by the band with confidence, attitude and intention. Upending predictable conventions without sacrificing hooks, the band’s eighth album champions discomfort, tension, rage, and groove with esoteric abandon, exploring the absurdity of life and death.
The album opener, “Game Over”, indicts the mundanity of everyday life, particularly one without purpose or fulfilment. “Mattel” goes on the offensive about the Barbie-girl-on-steroids artificiality of cities and suburbs, from fake pleasantries to fake grass. The lead single, “Nobody”, explores the ego death sought by mystics and shamans for millennia, the recognition that the self is an illusion, that we are everything and nothing at once.
We Love You” decries the rat race and “Cosmic” celebrates love traversing time, space, and evolution. “Beautiful Morning,” by contrast, is a darker existential crisis, giving false relief by the empty promises found in “Easier.” Tracks eight, nine, and ten form a triptych of sorts – “G,” “(O)rdinary,” and “(D)eath,” or “GOD.” People wrap themselves in The Secret, manifestation, or religion, but God? God sees them all as obsessive fans who missed the point and simply hit reset. The robot that follows ponders the nature of consciousness. Following “(D)eath,” the title track is a piano number tickling toward sweet oblivion.
Far from nihilistic despair, the expansive themes and existentialist exploration of Life Is But A Dream…offer more of a celebration and liberation of life while exploring the possible illusion of free will and determinism. The aim is for the audience to aspire, in life, to what Avenged Sevenfold aspires to in art. Confrontation, reinvention, acceptance, surrender, struggle, and the courage to fail, on our own terms, with integrity. “There are no rules. It doesn’t matter what anyone thinks,” Shadows points out. “One day, we’ll all be gone, and eventually, we’re all forgotten. So, once you find your own purpose, go for it.”
With Life Is But a Dream…, the band continues to prove they are well ahead of the curve, in more than just sound. Always on the cutting edge of music and technology, A7X have partnered with Berify to include an NFC tag with exclusive content and blockchain authentication on all CDs, vinyl, cassettes, and official merchandise sold on A7XWorld.com. Additionally, the album art and packaging are intricately created by renowned artist and friend, Wes Lang.
On Friday, May 26th and Saturday, May 27th the band hosted a Life is But a Dream… art exhibit at Beyond The Streets art gallery in Los Angeles, showcasing the band’s suite of 20 original Wes Lang paintings created for the album, including the iconic cover image. Over two days, the gallery saw over 1000 attendees and held an intimate discussion between M. Shadows, Synyster Gates, Wes Lang, and Roger Gastman (owner of Beyond The Streets). Watch the compelling conversation HERE.
Additionally, Avenged Sevenfold will support the release of Life Is But a Dream… with two massive live shows this month, a SOLD OUT show at the Kia Forum in Los Angeles on June 9th and another at Madison Square Garden on June 23rd. The band made its first festival appearance in five years earlier this month on Friday, May 19th at Welcome To Rockville at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. This summer, the band is taking off on an extensive North American tour; head HERE to find tickets.
To date, A7X have sold over 10 million albums worldwide and earned two consecutive No. 1 albums on the Billboard 200 album chart (2010’s Nightmare and 2013’s Hail To The King) to go along with over a billion video views and a billion-plus Spotify streams, as well as multiple No. 1 singles on rock radio. The band are equally known for their spectacular live shows, selling out arenas and headlining the world’s most prestigious rock festivals.
At the forefront of rapidly changing technology, cultural mile markers, and new ways for communities to engage, Avenged Sevenfold is steadily constructing its own ecosystem in real time, existing in a symbiotic relationship with its audience based on complete trust and mutual respect. Life is But a Dream…is the natural creative anchor and sonically immersive environment for this mission.