Riff Police! Pull Over! #20: Black Veil Brides Vs Avenged Sevenfold!

How often has it been said that Avenged Sevenfold have ripped off Metallica, Pantera or Guns n’ Roses at various points over the last 19 years? The Orange County band may have started out Metalcore but have evolved over that time and with latest offering “The Stage” have shown a far more progressive side, thanks in part to the recruitment of former Bad Religion drummer Brooks Wackerman. But we’re interested in something much earlier in the bands career. 2003 saw the Avenged Sevenfold release “Waking The Fallen” through Hopeless Records and single “Unholy Confessions” was perhaps the song that gave the band the push they needed. It’s a cracking song, perhaps even their best to date and the riffage is unmistakable.

Some 6 years after “Unholy Confessions” was released, Black Veil Brides appeared on the scene with “Knives And Pens” lyrically posing the question, which is better? Knives – destruction, in other words, self harm or Pens – creation, the choosing life and to start to write music. As good as the song is, it sounds… familiar. Influenced? You’d have to ask guitarists Johnny Herold and Nate Shipp on that one. But given that they stylised the Black Veil Brides early years in such a similar way…

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