M. Shadows Discusses the Disappointing First-Week Sales for Avenged Sevenfold’s The Stage

  • Axl Rosenberg

Avenged Sevenfold’s surprise album, The Stage, sold 72,000 copies in its first week of release. And while that’s a figure for which most metal bands would kill, it represents a fifty-percent drop-off from the first week sales of the band’s last two albums, Hail to the King and Nightmare. The decrease in sales is especially noteworthy because the band is in the midst of lawsuit with their now-former label, Warner Bros., about whom their attorney has previously said “We don’t know what Warner could have done with an Avenged album other than screw it up.” But first-week sales of The Stage — the band’s first album for their new label, Capitol — don’t reflect that sentiment.

Now vocalist M. Shadows has discussed the (relatively) disappointing sales for The Stage in a new interview with Inc.com. Says Shadows:

“We have mixed feelings right now. We know we could have done a boring lead up and taken the number one spot. When you do a three-month buildup you roll pre-orders, singles, etc. into your first week.

“The way we did it, our numbers are just for one week. Like Kanye: his first week numbers [for this year’s The Life of Pablo, which was released via non-traditional means] were low compared to what they could have been had he done the traditional release.”

Shadows continued:

“…We felt it was worth the risk.

“We also take a longer-term view. The average album following a three-month release model typically sees sales drop as much as 80% for the second week. We expect some drop off, too… but we also expect our album sales to continue over a longer period of time.

“It’s mixed feelings, but I’m very excited to be doing new things. I would be depressed if we had done the old buildup process. That feels very 2009.

“Right now we have an album that sold less copies in its first week than the last one. And that’s okay: you can’t break the rules and expect the same result.”

Of course, Shadows has to put on a brave face. And he could very well be right — the decrease in sales could be because of The Stage‘s non-traditional release. The album’s second-week sales will be very telling. If the fall-off is minimal, then we can surmise that initial sales were tied into the album’s surprise unveiling. If the fall-off is average or worse, though…

We should know by Monday, one way or the other.

Read the rest of the interview with Shadows here.

[via The PRP]

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