The Stage Has Avenged Sevenfold’s Lowest First-Week Sales in Eleven Years
Avenged Sevenfold’s heated legal battle with their former label, Warner Bros., just got that much more interesting: the band’s debut for Capital Records, The Stage, had the lowest first-week sales for any Avenged Sevenfold album since City of Evil in 2005. In fact, it sold less than half as many copies as the band’s last two albums, Nightmare and Hail to the King, sold during the same time period. It’s also twenty percent shy of the first week sales for the band’s eponymous 2007 album. This despite a previous claims by the band’s attorney, Howard Kin that “We don’t know what Warner could have done with an Avenged album other than screw it up.”
To be fair, The Stage still did really, really well, selling approximately 72,000 copies in its first week of release. And it’s entirely possible that the lower sales are due, at least in part, to the fact that the band released the album as a surprise, with prior announcements suggesting the record wouldn’t be out ’til December.
Still, this does seem to put a substantial dent in A7X’s “Warner Bros. didn’t know what the heck they were doing” argument.
The silver lining is that if A7X lose their case again Warner, the amount they have to pay the label may be lower than it would have been had The Stage sold better: as previously reported by The Wall Street Journal, “To recover damages, Warner Music will be tasked with establishing the answer to a tricky hypothetical question: how much it would have earned had it released the band’s latest album.” So there’s that.