Avenged Sevenfold are one of the later crop of American metal bands having formed in 1999. Taking a different route from the thrash and hardcore bands that came along around them, their sound is more traditional heavy metal, with a melodic backbone. That said, their guitarists have all the chops necessary to excite a mosh pit as their live shows will testify. With their later material, they paint an even wider canvas, becoming more open to other influences and thus broadening their popularity. Avenged Sevenfold's record sales have climbed in parallel with the trajectory of their career with a number of gold and, indeed, one platinum album to their credit. Despite their biblically referenced name and the band member's nicknames having religious associations, they deny being in any way a religious or political band stating that just want to make their fans think for themselves. The album Nightmare, released in 2010, is decidedly in the classic metal mould although the band's softer side is also present giving the record a rounded and complete feel. One of the reasons for this may have been the tragic death of their drummer, Jimmy 'The Rev' Sullivan, in 2009 when the album was under construction. The band dedicated the album to their late colleague on its release. Despite what must have been a massive blow to the band they have decided to continue to tour and make the music their fans so enjoy.