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Avenged Sevenfold's Synyster Gates and Zacky Vengeance Discuss Their Hard Rock-Influenced New Album, 'Hail to the King'

“I gotta admit, today is a little nerve racking,” Zacky Vengeance says, speaking to Guitar World on a hot July afternoon in Los Angeles. The guitarist is preparing to head to rehearsal with his bandmates in Avenged Sevenfold, something he has done hundreds of times over their 14 years together. It wouldn’t be cause for anxiety except that, this time, things are a little different. According to Vengeance, Avenged haven’t performed live in more than a year, the longest such stretch of their career.

Dear Guitar Hero: Mick Jones Talks Foreigner, Producing Van Halen's '5150' and Hanging Out with The Beatles

He's the lead guitarist for one of the world's best-selling classic rock acts of all time. But what Guitar World readers really want to know is ...

Dear Guitar Hero: Neil Giraldo Talks B.C. Rich Eagles, "Jessie's Girl," Jeff Beck, Producing and More

He’s married to Pat Benatar and has played guitar on every one of her records, but what Guitar World readers really want to know is…

Jerry Cantrell Tells How Alice In Chains Buried Their Past with 'The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here'

“We approach every new record the same way—by just fucking totally forgetting about the last one,” Jerry Cantrell says about the creative process within Alice in Chains. “You have to start from a zero every time.” For Alice in Chains, of course, starting from zero hasn’t always been so easy. For a long time, the band’s past—both the highs and lows—has loomed rather largely in their present.

Girl on Fire: Orianthi Turns Up the Heat on Her New Album, 'Heaven In This Hell'

When Guitar World finally catches up with her in Los Angeles, she’s just returning to the mainland from a show in Hawaii. Beyond the pleasures of globe trotting, she is clearly enjoying her long-running stint with the celebrated shock-rocker. “We get to celebrate Halloween all year long,” she says. “And I have the best seat in the house every night.”

Interview: Alex Lifeson Discusses Rush's Rock Hall of Fame Induction and Deluxe Reissue of '2112'

Despite an intensely devoted fan base and decades of massive success, Rush have been, for much of their career, regarded as the World’s Least-Hip Rock and Roll Act—the band of choice for adolescent boys mesmerized by 20-minute prog-rock epics, extravagant drum solos, and lyrics filled with tales of snow dogs, warring trees and French national holidays.

Excerpt: Black Veil Brides Guitarists Jake Pitts and Jinxx Talk 'Wretched and Divine: The Story of the Wild Ones'

“I wonder sometimes: Is it cool to hate Black Veil Brides?” asks Jake Pitts, lead guitarist for the band. It’s a fair question. After all, the band holds pride of place as heavy metal’s Public Enemy Number One. Tarted up with face paint and eyeliner, wrapped in skintight leathers and topped with razor-chopped piles of jet-black hair, Black Veil Brides epitomize the type of glammed-up, visually over-the-top rock act that has always been a lightning rod for criticism, from Kiss and Alice Cooper to Mötley Crüe to Avenged Sevenfold.

Interview: Coheed and Cambria on Their Ambitious New Companion Albums, 'The Afterman'

“I’m not a great communicator,” says Coheed and Cambria singer and guitarist Claudio Sanchez. It’s a surprising admission from someone who has not only spent much of his musical life behind a microphone but also masterminded one of rock’s longest-running concept stories.

Interview: Megadeth Guitarist Dave Mustaine on 2009's 'Endgame'

"You know,” says Dave Mustaine, “the other day I was trying to explain to a friend the story of King Midas, and how terribly lonely that must have been for him to have everything he touched turn to gold. "After a while that’s gotta suck, don’t you think? Especially if you touched your loved one…” The Megadeth singer and guitarist lets out a big laugh. “Although given some of the people I’ve had in my life, I’d probably be better off.”

Excerpt: Five Questions with Crazy Horse Guitarist Frank “Poncho” Sampedro

"For that one, Neil just started playing it and we all joined in. I think right before we began, he said something like, 'You know, when we go to the verse it goes to these changes…' and he showed us. Nobody really knew when that was gonna happen, but we just followed along. And there might have been some rough spots. I might have dropped my guitar down a couple times. [laughs] But other than that, that was it. That’s the first take. For years I’ve been telling people that when we get together and jam, it’s just like that. But it was never recorded. "