Fan poll: top 5 AVENGED SEVENFOLD albums ranked, from worst to best | Revolver

Fan poll: top 5 AVENGED SEVENFOLD albums ranked, from worst to best

See if your A7X favorite made the cut
avenged sevenfold 2006 PRESS

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Most metal bands who've been around as long as Avenged Sevenfold have discographies with very clear peaks and valleys. Fans of the O.C. Deathbat crew have a much different type of catalog to contend with, however. Every A7X album (released so far) differs remarkably from the other seven. Some are monstrously heavy, while others have a mainstream melodic polish. Some hone in on a specific sound throughout, while others are jump erratically between various heavy stylings.

Therefore, fan opinion differs wildly, with some listeners riding or dying for the band's OG metalcore days, and others claiming with all their might that the band's most recent material is actually their finest. We knew we'd get a shit ton of divergent yet equally passionate answers when we asked our readers to pick the single best Avenged Sevenfold album. The top five vote-getters are ranked accordingly below. Please be civil in the comments.

5. The Stage

The fact that The Stage made it onto this list just goes to show how polarizing the entire Avenged Sevenfold discography is. The band's 73-minute, prog-influenced sci-fi epic is, to some, one of their most discombobulated and meandering albums. To others (including A7X's own M. Shadows) it's their most accomplished release to date, a culmination of all the musical terrain they'd traversed across their career, not to mention their most ambitious lyrical concept.

4. Waking the Fallen

This is the one old Avenged heads pick as their favorite, so we're glad that it made this list, but also happy that it doesn't occupy the No. 1 slot — because it shouldn't. A7X's second record welcomed lead guitarist Synyster Gates and bassist Johnny Christ into the lineup, tightening the band's delivery, centering Gates' mind-blowing solos and transforming their sound into a full-on metalcore assault, shedding the unfocused skate-punk of their debut. Some of their best songs lie within this tracklist, but as a full record, it pales in comparison to some of their later work.

3. Nightmare

There was a time when A7X thought Nightmare would be their last record. Written in the wake of founding drummer-vocalist Jimmy "The Rev" Sullivan's tragic passing, the band's fifth LP is by far their most emotionally poignant and ballad-heavy, but it's also got some certified bangers on there. "God Hates Us," "Welcome to the Family," "Danger Line" and "Natural Born Killers" are all high-intensity knockouts, and the singles, "Buried Alive" and "Nightmare," are two of the eeriest, urgent and most complete songs they've ever written.

2. City of Evil

To the Waking the Fallen heads reading this: We get it. But also, get over it. City of Evil was A7X's first of many radical reinventions, stripping away the metalcore muscle and ditching the screams in favor of glammy clean vocals and wildly catchy thrash instrumentation. Thanks to runaway single "Bat Country," City of Evil is the record that made the band stars, ushering in a melodic sensibility that they've never shied away from since. But c'mon, the solos on this album fucking rip, the riffs are plentiful and the band have never sounded this vibrant for a whole album straight. City of Evil rocks.

1. Avenged Sevenfold

We're with our readers on this one. A7X's 2007 self-titled is their best record (so far). While its sonic diversity has since been rivaled by The Stage, this is the band's most consistently adventurous release, ranging from deliriously entertaining rock operas ("A Little Piece of Heaven") and swaggering groove-metal riots ("Critical Acclaim") to virtuosic thrash ("Almost Easy)" and the band's single best song in every regard, "Afterlife." When we think of Avenged Sevenfold, the "White Album" cover is where our minds land. We're happy to be on the same wavelength as our Deathbat readers.