Enlarge Photo Credit: Jeff Forney

Sales for Avenged Sevenfold’s The Stage Drop Nearly 80% in Second Week

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I know M. Shadows is not a big fan of math, so I owe him an apology in advance for daring to write this story. Sorry, Matt.

With that out of the way, I thought you might like to know that Avenged Sevenfold’s The Stage sold 16,000 copies in its second week of release. Again, that’s an impressive number by metal standards… but it’s also a 78% dip from The Stage‘s first week of release, when it sold 72,000 copies, which already a 50% dip from the first week sales of A7X’s last two alums, Nightmare and Hail to the King.

Although Shadows himself has said that an 80% drop in an album’s second week is fairly standard these days, the fact that the number wasn’t smaller for The Stage suggests that the record’s relatively low debut week sales may have had less to do with the fact that it was a surprise release with very little prior promotion than previously suspected. Certainly, I imagine it will make it more difficult for the band’s attorney to argue that their former label, Warner Bros. — with whom they are now engaged in a lawsuit — would have “screwed up” promotional efforts for The Stage, as previously alleged.

So why weren’t sales for The Stage closer to the figures for Nightmare and Hail to the King? Illegal downloading certainly had something to do with it, but given the size of the drop, I can’t imagine it’s the only culprit. Part of me wonders if it’s backlash for Hail to the King, which was largely perceived as a de facto covers album. It’s possible fans also just weren’t that keen on the album’s title track, which was the only song released in advance of the record’s release… although the 9,000,000+ views that song’s video has received on YouTube suggests otherwise.

So, really, it’s a mystery.

Even though sales for The Stage must come as at least somewhat of a disappointment to both the band and their new label, Capitol, Shadows has previously said that the band “expect our album sales [for The Stage] to continue over a longer period of time.” So, yet again, next week’s sales numbers will be telling.

[via Metal Injection]

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