Do surprise albums work?

Recently, the Australian rock band Northlane released their newest album Mesmer. However, it came as a surprise to everyone. There was no buildup to the album, no hint that there was new music coming from the band, and it caught everyone by surprise.

Trying to follow in the footsteps of Avenged Sevenfold, Northlane surprised its fans with a new Mesmer, and the sales numbers weren't the best. While Mesmer only sold 1,800 copies in the first week, the band's 2015 album Node sold 3,500 in its first week.

Last year, Davey Muise put out a video about the importance of first week sales, you can watch that video here:

So the question is, does the surprise release work? Avenged Sevenfold sold 72,000 copies of their surprise album, The Stage in the first week. While that number isn't awful, their previous album The Nightmare (which was well-hyped) sold 169,000 copies in its first week.

What do you think about this topic? Let us know in the comments!