“Who is the Crowd?, That peers through the Cage, as we perform here on the Stage”

Dublin at the 3 Arena is the crowd.

The booming chorus of the latest album by metal band Avenged Sevenfold was echoed through the 3 Arena at the opening of the debut world “The Stage “ Tour on  January 7th. If you were feeling a bit adventurous during exam season perhaps you sacrificed a night of study to attend this gig. If you’re a fan of the band weren’t I hope this review will suffice.

After 18 years, 7 albums and wide success among the metal community, Avenged Sevenfold from Huntington Beach, California have become a band to rank with the greats like Metallica or Iron Maiden. Especially in terms of live performance.

Speaking as a huge Avenged Sevenfold fan who has been a fan for a long time. I must say this was by far the best time I had ever seen them. In the past the band had been criticized for not playing longer shows, despite being headliners on their own concerts. This time was different, playing a total of 18 songs, which included a 3 song encore that delighted the audience.  What was most surprising about this set list was the fact they played songs from all seven albums. After seeing them 4 others times previously over the past near decade, even I never seen them do this.  I screamed as they played the opening track “To The End The Rapture” on their first album “Sounding the Seventh Trumpet”. They even instrumentally played “Warmness on the Soul” another song of their debut album, which they haven’t played since the album’s release back in 2001.

c1rvceiwiaakfne (Image from Avenged Sevenfold website)

Front man M Shadows stated to the crowd, that they have 7 types of people in the crowd that like 7 different eras of the band’s career.   One of the most important things to note as mentioned before is the fact this show was the fact they chose Dublin to be the start of the entire world tour. We were very lucky to be treated to hear 4 live debuts of songs from the new critically acclaimed album “The Stage”.  M Shadows told the crowd, the band hopes this will inspire their promoters to let them play a possible concert in Belfast in the future and that other bands would follow with opening a tour in Dublin first.  The set up of the show was incredible. They have several screens and lights across the whole stage. Displaying the various images and animated features that went with the themes of songs they played. One stand out moment was for the ballad “Acid Rain” off their last album “Hail to The King”, that featured an almost hallucjenic like colourful visuals that glistened from the band to the screens. One of the stand out moments was the giant Astronaut that was revealed halfway through the set that came out behind the band.(feature photo here)  This character going with the new Science AI themed of their latest album “The Stage “.

One personal critique of the gig I have that actually have nothing to do with the band, but the crowd. I remember when going to metal concerts as a teenager and getting caught up in the mosh and circle pits. Although, for this gig, at least where I was, the crowd were not getting into it. Even when Shadows requested it for a few songs.  I critique technology and the constant obsession with taking selfies, videos and photos of the gig that they weren’t actually actively enjoying the music. However, at the final song “ Unholy Confessions” off the second album , a large mosh pit opened up that made up for the lack of previously. There were some moments of humour the gig, Irish fans would appreciate. Like M Shadows stating seriously to the drummer that you cannot drink Guinness from a can or you would be sick. This was followed by a large cheer. Or when M Shadows complained about his beard or lack of and how it does not compare to that of Irish beards.   Fans remember that their original drummer and best friend Jimmy “The Rev “Sullivan who suddenly died back in 2009.  Sullivan was known among fans to be Irish.  The crowd cheered when his named as “Our Irish brother” was mentioned in the encore, before playing fan favourite “A little piece of Heaven” which The Rev wrote the “fucked up” lyrics himself.    Final note was the crowd of this show was extremely diverse in terms of age range, showing how the band have expanded upon a wider audience.  This gig was truly one to remember and one of the best gigs of the band in Ireland to date.