City of Evil

Common Sense Media says

Amazing guitar, troubling lyrics. For mature teens.





What parents need to know

Positive messages

Songs express suicidal fantasies and uncontrollable anger.


Lots of violent imagery.


Some innuendo.


Four-letter words, gleefully shouted.


CD insert advertises T-shirts.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that an album with this title is unlikely to be wholesome family fun. Expect lots of profanity and violent imagery (including suicide), as well as sexual innuendo.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Playfully acrobatic guitar work contrasts with troubling lyrics on Avenged Sevenfold's CITY OF EVIL. Instrumentally bold and imaginative, the album falls apart lyrically with tired clichés and hit-you-over-the-head shock value for its own sake, along with equally tired, yet disturbing CD insert artwork. Combining elements of punk, metal, and Spanish-style guitar picking, the band draws unapologetically from a variety of influences. You'll recognize guys who've listened to a lot of Metallica, Iron Maiden, and Guns 'N Roses, yet are trying really hard to create something new. Songs like "Bat Country" and "Burn it Down" express suicidal fantasies and uncontrollable anger. "Trashed and Scattered" gleefully repeats the F-word over and over again. Depressed teenagers may relate, but they deserve more eloquence, at least.

Is it any good?


Angry, stunningly predictable lyrics are generously laced with four-letter words and violent imagery, and do nothing to complement the originality of this group's musicianship. Sung in a tedious full-throttle nasal whine, there is no medium switch on the vocal posturing. Complex arrangements and incredible twin-guitar assaults are the album's greatest strengths, and all but the most die-hard fans will find themselves wishing for more instrumental solos.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the focus and hours of practice that go into the guitar work, and whether or not the lyrics would lose their punch if toned down.

Music details

Artist:Avenged Sevenfold
Release date:June 7, 2005
Label:Warner Brothers
Parental advisory:Yes
Edited version available:No

This review of City of Evil was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Teen, 15 years old Written by12foREVer28 June 13, 2010


Love the band! Some of their songs (in this album and others) are religous.

What other families should know
Too much swearing
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 17 years old Written byD3318 January 14, 2010

Great band, but a bad messages. Still, love it!!

Avenged Sevenfold is such a talented band, and I think that it IS a cd for more mature audiences. However, I know that you can find a clean version of the cd in many stores. I happen to own the clean cd and I think that it's still great without the swearing! No one needs to hear all of that bad language, so why not just buy the clean version? The messages are a little twisted, so you might want to listen to the cd to see if you approve before your kids listen to it. Yes, there's some iffy stuff, but it's an overall great cd.

What other families should know
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 17 years old Written byFiction.Shadows February 5, 2011

A7X For Life

With a title like 'City of Evil' of course it doesn't scream kid and family friendly. Though my parents let me get it at the age of twelve I have come to appriciate music a lot more than I did. Synyster and Zacky do an amazing job on the guitar, Johnny is an awesome bassist, The Rev (foREVer Fiction lives) is the god of drummers and M.Shadows Vocals just add to it all. Amazing CD for anyone who likes 'hard rock' Highly recomend it. =)


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Top Kids' Movies: An Essential Guide for Families