Avenged Sevenfold's M. Shadows: 'I’m Not Trying To Figure Out How To Do A Viral TikTok Moment'

13 June 2024 | 2:02 pm | Mary Varvaris

"They were trying to figure out how to create a viral TikTok moment. What? I’m a f*cking 42-year-old man."

Avenged Sevenfold

Avenged Sevenfold (Credit: Brian Catelle)

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Avenged Sevenfold vocalist M. Shadows has slammed the state of modern major labels, claiming that their former label, Warner Bros. Music, wanted a “viral TikTok moment” out of them.

In a new interview with Kerrang, the singer revealed the band “will never sign another record deal” after a long, legally disputatious run with Warner Bros Music. The group released their last album under the label, Life Is But A Dream…, last June and released the one before that, The Stage, via Capitol.

“We’re one of those bands who [have] actually survived releasing eight records for a major record label, and so we’ve seen a lot,” Shadows said before discussing the changes in modern album rollouts.

According to Shadows, here’s what record labels are doing now: “What they do is they go to TikTok, and they take someone who’s already gone viral [on social media], but who doesn’t have a label and they wrap ’em up into a shitty deal. But they can’t do anything for them.”

On how Avenged Sevenfold were affected by the changes, he continued: “When Avenged Sevenfold were on Warner Bros., they were trying to figure out how to create a viral TikTok moment. What? 

“I’m a fucking 42-year-old man; I’m not trying to figure out how to do a viral TikTok moment. I’m sorry. You’re going to take 24 cents on our dollar, and that’s all you can do, come up with a fucking fake viral TikTok moment?”

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While Shadows isn’t a fan of TikTok moments, Avenged Sevenfold have embraced other aspects of technology meant to connect with fans in different ways, such as Fortnite and developing NFTs. They’ve also worked with AI.

In the leadup to the release of Life Is But A Dream…, the band claimed to have been hacked. An AI podcast app stated that the band’s festival appearances at Sonic Temple and Welcome To Rockville had been cancelled. 

Metal Injection reports that the hacking was a ruse. Avenged Sevenfold fooled fans by using AI voice modifiers for the “fake podcast” confirming their “festival cancellations,” while the entire LIBAD5343.net tease website was written by ChatGPT and DALL-E 2.