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BasqueStorm
Metalhead

Joined: Wed May 26, 2010 2:21 pm
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Location: Turks and Caicos Islands
PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 6:59 am 
 

Ok, we have been talking about this here:
viewtopic.php?p=2171981#p2171981

Guidelines for an Interesting Post: Your best albums of the 2012 year (top 10?), explaining why, description of the band (including genre), sample link (Youtube song), the ones surprisingly NOT in your list and explaining why.

Edit: Added description of the band and sample link as suggested.

P.S: I'll need some time to make mine.
Thanks.


Last edited by BasqueStorm on Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:31 am, edited 4 times in total.
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henkkjelle
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:06 am 
 

Shouldn't we wait for the actual end of 2012? I would love to post my top 10, but it's not a definete list yet.

Don't you dare to make any doomsday jokes....
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BasqueStorm
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:12 am 
 

henkkjelle wrote:
Shouldn't we wait for the actual end of 2012? I would love to post my top 10, but it's not a definete list yet.
Don't you dare to make any doomsday jokes....

I don't really know if there's any big release pending to be released.
Feel free to do whatever.
I'll start to work on my post since people started to post their lists in the mentioned thread.
P.D: Damm! I was! LOL!


Last edited by BasqueStorm on Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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joppek
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:39 am 
 

would also be nice if the lists had at least a genre description + possible youtube (etc) link to some material off the album
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Metantoine
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:27 am 
 

Yeah, some description. Not only lame lists with nothing else. I'll post mine in 2013.
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BasqueStorm
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Joined: Wed May 26, 2010 2:21 pm
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Location: Turks and Caicos Islands
PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:41 am 
 

joppek wrote:
would also be nice if the lists had at least a genre description + possible youtube (etc) link to some material off the album

Metantoine wrote:
Yeah, some description. Not only lame lists with nothing else. I'll post mine in 2013.

Thanks for the suggestions!
P.S: Holy shit! 96 albums!

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STORMM
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Joined: Sun Oct 22, 2006 10:27 am
Posts: 2833
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 9:35 am 
 

BasqueStorm wrote:
henkkjelle wrote:
Shouldn't we wait for the actual end of 2012? I would love to post my top 10, but it's not a definete list yet.
Don't you dare to make any doomsday jokes....

I don't really know if there's any big release pending to be released.
Feel free to do whatever.
I'll start to work on my post since peaple started to post their lists in the mentioned thread.
P.D: Damm! I was! LOL!


I have a couple of what should be fantastic releases due in the post but I have a feeling they will not be here until well after Christmas! Should still end then year on a high when they arrive, one maybe topping my list.....!!

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vulcan plutarchy
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Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2012 10:36 am
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 9:44 am 
 

This mandatory Youtube thing, do we really want like 50 Youtube links for the new Kreator album?
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Wombface
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:16 pm 
 

It would be nice to see a favorite EP of the year as well in the list. And maybe favorite album cover, with description of course. Or maybe that's too much? Anyways, youtube links will be appreciated and I doubt you'll see 50 links for the same song.
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inhumanist
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:43 pm 
 

I think I'm still gonna need at least half a year or so to scrape together a top ten of 2012 albums. Far too early to make any decisions. Still need to listen to all that shit.
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ObservationSlave
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:48 pm 
 

In no particular order:

Be'lakor- Of Breath and Bone: I have enjoyed all three of their albums, but I feel that this one is the most melodic; the songs seem to fit together very well and make listening to the album from start to finish very coherent.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYBgWgjjgxQ

Rush- Clockwork Angels: I believe that this is the best that Rush has put out in many many years. These guys still have it and weren't shy to show it here.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZcFGrWjOX0E

Ne Obliviscaris- Portal of I: I am a huge fan of the use of violin and clean vocals on this album. Very progressive, but also many elements of black and melodic death metal.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aMorAdnCixg

Testament- Dark Roots of the Earth: I thought that the Formation of Damnation was pretty good but this album is another step in the right direction. Its very heavy and thrashy. I don't care much for the covers, but powerslave isn't too bad.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aHyVbLMSO7k

Orden Ogan- To the End: I had never quite known what this band was missing, but whatever it was they found it on this album. Every single song is great (except maybe Angels War), with easily the best vocals and production to ever come from Orden Ogan.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5dd1MD9Dro

Wintersun- Time I: I know this album got mixed reviews but I love the Japanese sound in When Time Fades Away and Sons of Winter and Stars. Its not quite as heavy as the first album, but the production is phenomenal and Jari kills it on vocals. I know its short, but Time II is coming out next year (hopefully).
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lsWxLQDzJOU

Angelus Apatrida- The Call: Taking influence from all of the best thrash metal out there, this album does not stop from beginning to end. This is yet another example of a band who has been decent up until now, and then released a killer album. My favorite thrash album of the year.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LrpsjO7tOCY

Sylosis- Monolith: I'm sure many will disagree, but I am a fan of the cross between melodic death metal and thrash with a dash of metalcore. The musicianship on this album is outstanding, and as always takes you from one melodic riff to the next.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tocEwt4HHOg

Bloodshot Dawn- Bloodshot Dawn: Caught somewhere between Sylosis and Be'lakor, Bloodshot Dawn is another example of a very heavy melodic band. They do a great job of mixing melodic and death aspects.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=40PMzd-xjos

I think this is all I got for now in terms of the good.

My biggest disappointment has got to be Ensiferum. Their experimentation on From Afar went very well (Stone Cold Metal for instance), but this album just does not do it for me.

I was also disappointed with The Sword. I actually really enjoyed Warp Riders, but Apocryphon has them digressing back to the more stonery sound. Every song sounds the same.

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Sokaris
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:50 pm 
 

I hope its cool if I post a link to mine published elsewhere:
http://www.globaldomination.se/best-of/ ... 12-sokaris
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Misfit74
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 9:47 pm 
 

Sample links aren't required, are they?
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Subrick
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 9:50 pm 
 

Misfit74 wrote:
Sample links aren't required, are they?


-_-
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MalignantThrone
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 12:35 am 
 

I don't really keep up with all the new releases from the current year while they happen (that's what next year's for, in my mind) so my list isn't really going to have that many big names. Nevertheless, I present it to you, the denizens of MA:

10. Catechism - Catechism: some random industrial/harsh noise release I got in an order from a distro. Pretty cool stuff, two tracks of raw feedback that manages to be loud but with the treble toned down enough for it to be kind of sonically soothing. Non-annoying use of samples and tracks that don't just retardedly meander in 500 different directions? Sign me up.
http://aterre.bandcamp.com/track/side-a

9. Converge - All We Love We Leave Behind: I honestly don't really remember exactly what this sounded like (I mean, it's Converge, duh, that should be enough of a description by itself), but I thought it was cool, if not as good as other albums I've heard by them.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-vZRGK4FbI

8. Dying Fetus - Reign Supreme: the only Dying Fetus album I've ever heard (only got it because I saw the deluxe edition for $8 in an f.y.e.) but hey, this is cool. Catchy, riffy, and - most importantly - wiggery death metal that just crushes and noodles and punishes. Not the most brutal thing I've ever heard, but still really good fun.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IHb7h_LP6ek

7. Yzordderrex - Yzordderrex: yeah, yeah, a ShaolinLambKiller band, but this is seriously really cool stuff. It's drone/doom with a lot of Khanate influence and a bit more outright experimentation with minimalism, noise and ambience. Not a huge fan of the vocals, but the surprisingly competent guitar tone, memorable riffs and solid drumming more than make up for it.
http://yzordderrex.bandcamp.com/album/yzordderrex

6. Disfiguring the Goddess - Sleeper: it's a lot different from Big Chocolate's earlier stuff with DTG, incorporating a lot of djent influence and all, but it's a change for the better in my mind. Retardedly heavy, warm production job, interesting use of synths, awesome vocals (as usual) and some sweet rhythms and riffs. Also, my CD copy came with a bonus disc with all the songs as instrumentals, which is really interesting to hear.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lKmiE82Gssc

5. Secreted Entity - Horrifying Hallucinations of Ungodly Activities: fast, upbeat, trashy, and over-the-top slam fucking death metal. The guitar tone is strangely raw, the slams are massive, the blast sections are insane and fun (insanely fun, even), and the slams are massive. Reminds me of early Waking the Cadaver, in a way.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O9Y3tx03hwA

4. Morbid Footnote - The Ugliest King: wow. I stumbled upon this on MA's promotional forum and it's seriously retarded good. It's like death/grind with all the death metal influence taken from a modern OSDM band. The production job is ridiculously massive, the riffs are awesome, the drums are thunderous, and the vocals somehow manage to find the strength to roar at you through this entire crushing wall of sound. It's a short release but I seriously can't recommend it enough - out of all the albums on my list this one is probably the only one that the majority of people reading this would enjoy.
http://morbidfootnote.bandcamp.com/albu ... liest-king

3. El-Ahrairah - The Gates of Dawn: this was my first taste of El-Ahrairah and I can safely say that it won't be my last. From what I understand their earlier stuff is different, but this particular album is composed of awesomely atmospheric, soaring black metal riffs, usually backed by fast (though not retardedly blistering) and simplistic drumwork haunting vocals that are somewhere between a wail and a shriek. All of this wrapped in an extremely fuzzy but ultimately warm and soothing production job.
http://aterre.bandcamp.com/album/the-gates-of-dawn

2. The Mung - Showering in Shit: this is one of those albums where I feel like it was custom-designed for me. Wet, pitch-shifted roars and high, raspy shrieks for vocals? Check. Gargantuanly massive guitar tone? Check. Huge southern-tinged groovy sections and equally awesome blastier parts? Check. Screw you guys that need seriousness in your music, the rest of you come jam the fuck out to "Pee on Me, Amputee" with me.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oo3Qt6c17jw

1. Epicardiectomy - Abhorrent Stench of Posthumous Gastrorectal Desecration: my favourite album of the decade so far, easily. This is Cephalotripsy on every single illicit substance imaginable - all of the Czech Republic's monuments were probably leveled when the slams on this album were recorded. Clanky drums which know how to use syncopation flawlessly, a perfect sense of pacing, thick and memorable slams, and gruff but catchy vocals. My little blurb here really doesn't do this album justice, go read the ~3,000-word review I wrote for it here.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUUxcEb4qmE

I can't really give out honourable mentions because even with this list of ten albums I'm starting to bleed into the "ehhh, it was pretty good I guess" territory, and so anything further would start to feel less like awards and more like "these were the albums I heard that were rather mediocre". However, I would like to give props to the album Artaud by Sirotek, a Russian industrial noise project whose album I (yep) blind-bought way back in the beginning of 2012. It lies just outside the top 10 for me, but seriously, you should look this up - good, catchy songs which each have a unique atmosphere and still manage to be rough enough in their presentation to suffice for noise listening. I can't find any links on YouTube, but, um, if you're the thieving type of music listener you should be able to find it for download pretty easily. It was the second result for me when I typed "sirotek artaud" into Google...
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nosferatu1234
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 12:50 am 
 

Subrick wrote:
Misfit74 wrote:
Sample links aren't required, are they?


-_-


I can understand needing to post some descriptions and why an album is in your top 10, but for every person to post a youtube link for every single album? Seems a bit much. If someone feels it just overly necessary to link a song for people to hear because their description can't justify it, than fine, but to make a youtube link mandatory for every single album included in everyone's top 10? There were only so many albums that were released this year... Particular albums are going to be mentioned in the majority of a lot of people's lists. Do we really need a new youtube link each time someone puts it in their top ten list? I mean, ten youtube links for each post? That's a bit overwhelming.
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vulcan plutarchy
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 1:11 am 
 

I wanted to check out that Be'lakor album but seriously couldn't find it anywhere for a halfway decent price.
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ObservationSlave
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 2:02 am 
 

vulcan plutarchy wrote:
I wanted to check out that Be'lakor album but seriously couldn't find it anywhere for a halfway decent price.


I agree, it is difficult to find at a low price. If you are willing to put $21 on it (includes shipping/handling), then you can buy it from their website. http://www.belakorband.com/cd

I would say that it is worth it, I am still in love with the album.

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ClaymanOnFire
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 2:12 am 
 

I only have three favorite albums :lol: I found a lot of music this year, but barely any of it was made in 2012...

1. Les Discrets - Ariettes oubliées...
Wow, just wow. This is simply amazing. A beautiful blend of Post-rock, Post-Black metal, and a touch of acoustic folk, composed with an emotional arc in mind and mixed near-perfectly. The ebb and flow of melancholy, hope, and downright sorrow is masterful. Take the fourth track, "Ariettes oubliées I : Je devine à travers un murmure..." It starts with a slow build up, which almost feels like trying to hold back tears after some terrible loss. At first you can control it, but the emotional pressure keeps building. You keep trying to choke it down, but eventually it just erupts into full-blown weeping as the distorted guitars kick in. Add to that the hopeful complex of emotions that closes the song, and you have quite a song.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tvcgBgb8o0Q

2. Anaal Nathrakh - Vanitas
If you've heard Anaal Nathrakh before, you know what to expect. Lots and lots of evil. But not demonic evil, it's distinctly human, full of confusion, malice, hatred, and frustration. I especially like how they managed to blend in the electronic elements. Dave Hunt's vocals have improved as well, both cleans and screams (listen to Todos Somos Humanos for some inhuman howling). But the track I'm going to share, A Metaphor for the Dead, had me confused at first. The body of the song was suitably dark, but the outro featured an oddly melodic guitar lead. Then I read the very accurate guessed lyrics on Darlyrics. The song is based on an opera called "Pagliacci," which the chorus is taken from. After reading lines like "laugh, clown, so the crowd will cheer!" that melodic lead takes on a whole new meaning. It sounds tragic, and almost like it's mocking the poor protagonist.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FtSCjPA22-E

3. In Mourning - The Weight of Oceans
Superb Melodic Death metal with a progressive twist. The lyrics are interesting as well, literally about a journey across a sea monster-infested sea and metaphorically about religious discontent. There's also a hint of Post-rock buildup/climax in the compositions. While this album didn't blow me away like the first two did, it is a welcomed fresh take on Melodic Death metal even if you've heard the core elements before.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZ4ioEQ7okM
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Misfit74
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 3:01 am 
 

nosferatu1234 wrote:

I can understand needing to post some descriptions and why an album is in your top 10, but for every person to post a youtube link for every single album? Seems a bit much. If someone feels it just overly necessary to link a song for people to hear because their description can't justify it, than fine, but to make a youtube link mandatory for every single album included in everyone's top 10? There were only so many albums that were released this year... Particular albums are going to be mentioned in the majority of a lot of people's lists. Do we really need a new youtube link each time someone puts it in their top ten list? I mean, ten youtube links for each post? That's a bit overwhelming.


This.

And for me it's not so much overwhelming as it is unnecessary. Anyone with a keyboard can type/search 'youtube' 'band' 'album' if they've made it this far already... :roll:
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Kuranes Trevor
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 4:13 am 
 

Here are some of the best for me:

Undergang - Til Døden Os Skiller
They have gotten better.
Easier to hear everything, but still raw and nasty as fuck!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1SltEwbWv2E

Aura Noir - Out To Die
Better than "Hades Rise" and every song on this album rules!
Can't believe this isn't one of the biggest bands around.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-SqSAqfRHo

Deus Otiosus - Godless
Again, better than the debut. Every song is very good and memorable
and each one different from the last!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vpCYIY6bKOk

Horrendous - The Chills
Very special and strange death metal.
Just listen to it!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vk0l1dIZqMo

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symbolic1188
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 6:23 am 
 

Didn't listen to that many new albums this year. I did, however, discover some older US power metal stuff and a lot of other neat albums I had been missing out on. That said, here are the ones from this year that I really did enjoy:

Rush- Clockwork Angels- Easily my favorite this year. The best they have done in awhile. I think the crowning achievement here is the title track. The ringing atmospheric chords, driving verse, amazing solo and jazzy bridge make this the best song they have done in decades.

Dinosaur Jr.- I Bet on Sky- Somehow, J Mascis always gets me. Add some fuzz and noise to a catchy melody, add his signature low-key vocals over it and there you have it. The difference here is the great execution and guitar work. Perhaps their best since "You're Living All Over Me."

Converge- All We Love We Leave Behind- Converge are a noisy, brash, incredibly abrasive band. While it is hardcore, they don't fit neatly in that box. This continues here with experimental stuff like "Coral Blue" and "Sadness Comes Home." If you can get past the vocalist, there is plenty of great guitar work and solid drumming.

Meshuggah- Koloss- I don't think any description is required here. You probably either love them or really, really dislike them.

Testament- Dark Roots of Earth- I love the title track and True American Hate. Skolnick and Peterson are on fire here. They maintain the energy level for the duration. In my opinion, this is their most complete effort since the 80's.

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Itheus
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:28 am 
 

In no particular order:

My Dying Bride - "A Map of all Our Failures"

I thought perhaps MDB had hit a slump with Evinta and For Lies I Sire, but this is one of their top 3 albums IMO. There's even flirtation with funeral doom on this album which can be a good or a bad thing, but it's done well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ednom9e5eqo

Sigh - In Somniphobia

This album is just insane. Their all over the musical spectrum, but as a whole I guess would be considered avant-garde. "Amnesia" from the album would be my song of the year.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iADy4KIx5LY

Elysian Blaze - sure, it might be long and bloated, but it's really good. I'm not one to complain about 2+ hours of solid music.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=clPNTEdO1hA

Devin Townsend - Epicloud - this is so not my type of music. But I have a friend that said "just listen to it". I did, and am glad. It gives me a nice intermission from all of the "grimness"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C_XHSdayJ-E

Alrakis - "Alpha Eri" - not sure if this was a 2012, but am going with it. Spaced out one man black metal...with a nice mixture of ambient. Depressive, oppressive, and well done.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POD3riJvL18

Marduk - "Serpent Sermon" - black metal masters back with another solid release. Catchy riffing + Mortuus vocals, love it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HjVcW59Wu0s

Panopticon - "Kentucky" - at first glance, I didn't see how blue grass and black metal could go together. But with all of the folk elements, it makes sense...and it's done well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eO2CUheXMfs

I know my descriptions suck, but I threw this together in 5 minutes.

Album that I was disappointed/surprised that's not on this list - Shining's "Redefining Darkness". I've been a fan of just about everything they've released, not matter how cheesy and over the top their act is. For some reason I just haven't been able to buy into their latest.

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Dave_o_rama
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:53 am 
 

10. Kreator - Phantom Antichrist (Thrash Metal)
It's probably not the greatest Kreator album ever, but these guys still know how to write some good songs. From serious thrashers like the title track to the slower, more goosebump-inducing From Flood Into Fire, this album has a lot of memorable moments in it that make it worthy of this list.

9. The HAARP Machine - Disclosure (Progressive Metalcore/Technical Death Metal/Djent)
This album's combination of progressive metalcore/tech death/djent will probably turn off a lot of people, but it's actually pretty catchy and good. It's not like the band plays all these styles at once, though, and the album has some nice variety because of it. And the addition of the Sitar and Koto also keep things fresh.

8. Woods of Ypres - Woods 5: Grey Skies and Electric Light (Black/Doom Metal)
What I like most about Woods of Ypres is that David Gold's bleak lyrics aren't drenched in symbolism and imagery; They're simple and relatable to me. The songwriting and riffwork are good too, with faster, more aggressive songs like Adora Vivos and the drumming in Death is Not An Exit.

7. Anaal Nathrakh - Vanitas (Black Metal/Grindcore)
I was a little disappointed with it at first, mostly because I was expecting Passion 2.0 (and Passion is one of my favorite albums of all-time). While there was some Passion 2.0 in it (I'm looking at you, Forging Towards the Sunset), the increased industrial influence and occasional deathcore-isms won me over as I listened to it more. I second everything ClaymanOnFire said about the album as well.

6. Hooded Menace - Effigies of Evil (Death/Doom Metal)
Classic Hooded Menace, for those who have listened to them. Although some of the melodies weren't quite as evil as we've come to expect from them. Some of them sound... happier or more harmonious to me. But I think that serves to make the album even more disturbing.

5. The Contortionist - Intrinsic (Progressive Deathcore)
What I loved about Exoplanet was the way that album's lighter moments seemed to suck you into a strange, new world far removed from anything any other deathcore band (or even most bands in general) has done. And these lighter, more immersive moments are the biggest part of this album. And even the heavier parts, which aren't as prominent here, are still awesome.

4. Asphyx - Deathhammer (Death/Doom Metal)
This album doesn't offer anything new for anyone, but it does offer some damn good neck-breaking death metal and some crushingly heavy death/doom all rolled into one neat package. And Martin Van Drunen's vocals, which I've grown to love, are the best fit this album could hope for.

3. Dawnbringer - Into the Lair of the Sun God (Heavy Metal)
I'm not sure how this album does it, but the atmosphere this album creates is incredible. It even got me hooked quicker than The Contortionist did. Feel free to take a listen for yourself.

Currently tied for first place:

Aborted - Global Flatline (Death Metal/Grindcore)
In my opinion, this will be the gold standard for death/grind albums for a long time to come. Every track is jam-packed with it's own set of riffs, sometimes completely different from the songs before and after it. And yet it all makes sense and flows perfectly. There's not a single moment of boredom from the creepy intro Omega Mortis, to the haunting Endstille, and even the two bonus tracks after that in some editions.

The Faceless - Autotheism (Progressive/Technical Death Metal)
I had no idea what to expect going into this album (the trailers for it shattered them), but I find this album to be absolutely epic, especially the Autothiest Movement trilogy. Blistering speed in some parts and technicality that's not wankery don't hurt, either. Just like Global Flatline, there's not a single moment of boredom to be found here.
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rumpusaurus
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2009 11:56 pm
Posts: 184
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 1:02 pm 
 

I've not listened to a few bigger releases this year (Anaal Nathrakh, for example), but of what I've heard, these are my favorites. Also, I really like the format that Dave-o-rama used, so I'll be using that as well.

Sigh - In Somniphobia (Avant-Garde Black/Heavy Metal)
I've taken the time to learn all about Sigh's previous releases over the past few years of knowing about them, and one of their best traits I've picked up is their uncompromising approach to writing music. "In Somniphobia" is just as uncompromising and experimental as previous releases such as "Hail Horror Hail", but far better executed. Favorites from this album are "Somniphobia", "Amnesia" and "Equale".

Slice the Cake - Other Slices (Progressive Deathcore)
So, this album literally came out yesterday, but I can already tell it's going to stay on the same level of enjoyment as my other favorites from this year. Slice the Cake released an album earlier this year called "The Man With No Face", which began some kind of concept that the bands albums will follow. However, they had plenty of music which, while not "lesser" music, just didn't fit in with the concept of their other material, so they created this release as a B-sides album of sorts. I'm liking this release even more than any of their previous material, though. "Fractal Exam Sequence" seems to show some awesome X-Japan influence (though that may be coincidental), and "The Siren's Song" is one of the best songs I've yet to hear which can be classified as modern deathcore. "Kow Otani's Castle in the Sky" (and "The Great Migration", which to me seems like the opening of "Kow Otani"), however, is by far the best piece of music this band has ever done.

Lunar Aurora - Hoagascht (Atmospheric Black Metal)
Lunar Aurora has been a consistently awesome band. "Andacht" is my favorite of theirs which I've heard, as I've still not listened to a few of their earliest albums, and this album hasn't changed that, but "Hoagascht" is certainly an excellent addition to an already excellent discography. The guitars, drums and vocals are all very well executed and produced wonderfully, but the synths are what make this album excel, to me. The track "Sterna" is my favorite from this album, taking the bands ambient influence to new highs with a brilliant synth build in the middle, followed by one of the most emotional and epic climaxes of this album. Other favorites are "Im Gartn" and "Reng".

The Omega Experiment - The Omega Experiment (Progressive Metal)
The finest progressive metal album to be released this year. This album takes influence from a huge amount of other artists and styles, but manages to mix all of these influences to create an album of pure quality. I recognize that there are a lot of comparisons which can be made to Devin Townsend and Dream Theater (a band that I typically don't enjoy) throughout this release, but it comes across to me as genuine appreciation for these artists rather than simple mimicry. Huge production, intricate guitars and drums, lush synths and great songwriting dominate "The Omega Experiment", with my favorite tracks being "Stimulus", "Motion", "Furor", and "Karma". Something which made this release even more impressive was that the band created and release it independently, though the band just announced that they've signed with Listenable records yesterday. Good luck to them!

Deathspell Omega - Drought (Experimental Black Metal)
Everything I enjoyed in "Paracletus", I enjoyed in "Drought" as well. Unrelenting assaults of guitars, drums and vocals seem to swirl together to create one of the darkest and most chaotic releases this year. The songwriting of this album, much like "Paracletus", is a step above previous DSO releases, which leaves this EP sticking with me long after having listened to it. The obvious standout track, for me, is "Firey Serpents".

Disfiguring the Goddess - Sleeper (Industrial/Brutal Death Metal)
I wasn't that into Disfiguring the Goddess before this release, besides the track "Void Leacher" from his last album, "Circle of Nine". This release shows Cam stepping up his songwriting and production levels to new (and, admittedly, fairly strange) levels. The greater presence of synths has been a negative quality to some, but I love the dark and mysterious tones that these synths bring to otherwise unrelenting brutal death metal. The production is definitely a little odd - very warm, as mentioned in a previous post, but also very artificial - but I find this removal of any form of natural/typical production to further enhance the very inhuman element of the music. The drums are programmed, but very well written, and the vocals are devastating. My favorites are "Sleeper", "Queen Kingdom", "Daugther of Depths" and "Mountain", but every song on this release is almost equally strong, so I use the term "favorites" lightly.

My favorite releases that were either non-metal or re-releases:
Matryoshka - Laideronnette
Deftones - Koi No Yokan
Sigh - Gallows Gallery (Blood Music re-release)
Aves - Feathers
Big Chocolate - Red Headed Locc

It's also worth mentioning that the discovery of Talk Talk's "Laughing Stock" and Steve Roach's "Dreamtime Return" this year have both been a big deal for me.

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6Xul66
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Nov 12, 2009 4:48 pm
Posts: 443
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 2:43 pm 
 

Cattle Decapitation - Monolith Of Inhumanity (Death/Grind) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUfBPDRulPc

After The Harvest Floor I was pretty sure they wouldn't be able to top that record, but they went and released this beast. They've stripped back their sound a little on this record I find, which has made for some extremely catchy and heavy Death Metal. All 11 tracks on this are outstanding, not a single bad moment on this record. The song writing is top notch, and the highlight for me has to be Travis' vocals. The guy simply gets better by record and his extension of the clean/raspy vocals that he introduced a few records ago are a lot prominent on Monolith, which I personally think add a whole other dimension to the sound!

Aborted - Global Flatline (Death/Grind) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THvP2TXwBwk

Again another solid release from Aborted. Every track offers something different and just kicks major ass. I haven't got much to say about this record, its just a quality release.

***No particular order***

Seprevation - Ritual Abuse E.P (Death/Thrash) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJB-21dhRQs

This band hail from UK and I just recently checked out this band after my band played with these guys a few weeks ago. I was instantly blown away by what I heard, which was a nice blend of old school Death and Thrash Metal in the vein of Slayer, Morbid Angel, Sadus etc. A short release from these guys, with just 5 tracks, but every single song is un-relentless. For a small underground band from the UK, there's not a single bad point on this E.P, in my opinion. Pure homage to the old school masters!

Cryptopsy - Cryptopsy (Death Metal) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=16uvKqODiPc

I was honestly not expecting much from this album, but I was pleasantly surprised. Musically a lot better then what I've heard from the last album, vocals aren't anything extraordinary but they're livable and actually grow on you after a while. Just a really fun album.

Meshuggah - Koloss - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Da4GCw657g

Another solid release from Meshuggah. I actually prefer this a little more then Obzen as it keeps my attention for a lot longer. Plus Demiurge has become one of my favorite Meshuggah tracks...just a massive headbanging anthem!

Murder Construct - Results (Death/Grind) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=la-H6BVZhSU

Short explanation to this as there's not much to say other then a great brutal slab of Death/Grind. A very catchy release and to top it off it has vocals from Travis Ryan so all in all a very solid release!


If i can think of any more to add to this I'll whack them up when I can

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CF_Mono
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:21 pm
Posts: 1446
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:12 pm 
 

I'll start off by saying that entering my first year in uni, I haven't had a lot of time for listening to underground music. I don't think that all of these albums are particularly awesome, but many at least have some good parts, and still make it into my top ten of 2012. I can't compare this year to 2009 and 2010, when I was in highschool, listening to lots of music and drowning in tons of good albums. I can name dozens and dozens of them from that era that I still spin regularly. I'm gonna have to look through his thread and see if any of the albums I haven't heard of change my mind. But anyways, without further hesitation, here what I got so far...

1: Goatwhore - Blood For The Master (Extreme/Thrash Metal)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ybKifd3J0NI
I actually picked this album up at random because this girl I went on a date with pointed it out while we were wandering around the mall. I had heard of Goatwhore before, but never given them a fair listen, and when I plopped this into the CD player in the car, she go a little anxious that I might crash into something from all the headbanging. This is without a doubt just pure metal, refined and executed perfectly. Great riffs, thrashy beats, dark and angry elements. Just a plain load of fun and It's the clear #1 spot for me this year.

2: High on Fire - De Vermis Mestyriis (Thrash/Stoner metal)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fq1gb50iobU
High on Fire has without a doubt changed a lot since their first album. Snakes was a really different album for them, there were clear elements that they were adding all kinds of metal influenced into their sounds. Vermis has further solidified that notion while still retaining a stoner sound and attitude in their music. Again, this album is just plain fun. Good headbanging stuff with lots of huge power chords and riffs.

3: Rush - Clockwork Angels (Prog Rock/Metal)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IIAftTV4tBk
I shouldn't have to say a damn thing about this. I haven't spun this album once without listening to it all the way through. Fucking amazing melodies, great wonderful passages, and it all still feels like classic rock with that daring proto-metal edge. It still all comes down to the riffs on this one too, but every modulation and change from verse to chorus and chorus to bridge ect. is purely beautiful. Every facet of the band is great too, the singing, drumming, guitars and bass all have a multitude of shining moments. Plus it's some of the best production I've heard in a while without getting too flashy.

4: Anaal Nathrakh - Vanitas (Grindcore/Black Metal)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ibA7Ew_eWgQ
Another relentless album. A step up from the slightly experimental Passion.The Production has been cleaned up a bit but not without sounding too wussy. As usual they do a great job of having real brutal bashers and groovy riffs mixed in with dark atmosphere and repetition.

5: Every Time I Die - Ex Lives (Hardcore Punk/Metalcore(?))
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9SmHZocjphg
One of the few metalcore bands worthy of my attention, if you even want to call them that (I never understand the labeling on this kind of music). They have done a great job of kicking major ass over the years, and they really get what it means to be heavy, angry, and fucking pissed off. New Junk Aesthetic managed to have some more interesting and memorable mathy parts and rocking riffs, but Ex Lives sill proves to be a great album to jam out to despite being way more uniform in sound and style all the way through. It's also considerably heavier than the prior LP.

6: Torche - Harmonicraft (Stoner Metal/Rock)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bc4FeYfUjvA
I wish I could remember how I was turned onto these guys, but they were recommended in a number of different places. I finally heard a local band cite them as an influence, so when I picked up their latest LP, I was not disappointed. There is an obvious modern rock flavor on this album, but it's not at all a bad thing. It's mixed harmoniously with a massive fuzzy stoner sound and takes you to interesting places with really original songwriting and structuring.

7: Incantation - Vanquish In Vengeance (Death Metal)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WdHbT5wSckM
Holy shit, just when you thought they were dead, Incantation comes out of nowhere like a blow with a fucking sledgehammar. The riffs have never been odder and more crooked than now. They've proven to me that a band can still be consistent after two decades of working. I was also convinced after Dead Congregation's debut LP, that someone else had found out how to play Incantation better than Incantation, but fuck, this album changed my mind, and both bands are good in their own right. Loving this album to death and I have a feeling that I will for a long time.

8: Revocation - Teratogenesis (Progressive Technical Death Metal)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Hv_tYHmt7Y
Never fond of Revocation before this EP, but it's clear that prog fever has rubbed off onto them, and man it's worth it. The riffs sound like typical tech death, so if you're into that kind of thing it's good I guess. But there are also a few thrashier moments, and the song structures can get very complex. But most of all, the shining moments on this EP are the solos, these guys shred the poor souls out of every one with no mercy. I feel terrible for missing them when they toured here with the HAARP Machine and The Faceless, but finals were just way too important for me to put in second place behind a live show. The problem here is that some of the epic moments are peppered throughout some rather underwhelming ones, and I'm also still not a fan of the vocal style.

9: Candlemass - Psalms For The Dead (Doom Metal)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qb9tjjJ8dyg
Candlemass always brings up interesting conversations because of how different each album is, and also because of how wide the opinions of doom metal can be. It is clear that Candlemass made the proper decision to retire in order to prevent rehashing old material. There are still good songs on here, and their solos are still some of the best that metal has to offer, but unfortunately I could have seen this coming miles away. This is inconsistent in a slightly different way from the Revocation EP I mentioned above. It's clear that all of the music here is good, but it just had the potential to be that much better. That being said, Robs vocal delivery still slayed, and I'm having a lot of fun with this respectably doomy album.

10: Rings of Saturn - Dingir (Progressive Deathcore)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cTUQQxEX0vw
Okay, I know a lot of people are really going to disagree with me here, but Dingir really had some great material to offer. Like the above, there are some truly fantastic moments that shine, but many of them are also surrounded by crap. ROS has also caught prog fever, and despite that fact that I think this whole movement is overhyped and a fad, It's really helped this band organize their thoughts, and there are some really refreshing ideas on this album, unlike their first album which pretty much uniformly sucked.

I will add links to all these albums in a second...

Other notable albums:

Periphery - Periphery II (You know, these guys are great for starting a revolution and everything, but it almost seems like their time has come and gone. Again, inconsistency is a major problem here. They don't sound like Periphery anymore, now it's more like a band that's trying to sound like Periphery. It's like they were way more concerned with their tone on the album rather than what they were actually writing.)

Valborg - Necrodepression (A little let down by this. I read that there were noise influences on this album and that's what induced a lot of the repetition. Lots of strange riffs as usual, just felt like recycled ideas that didn't make it on the last album. They're still my favorite underground Swiss bastards though.)

Kreator - Phantom Antichrist (I don't really like Kreator but this album is probably my favorite of theirs. Loving the slightly extreme and melodic parts. Good thrash in general.)

Dethklok - Dethalbum III (Matured a lot. They (he) went from novel songs mocking the death metal style, to a legitimate band with some catchy parts. Still feels like it needs development though, very predictable song structures.)
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Terri23
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Sep 30, 2010 3:53 am
Posts: 2096
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:36 pm 
 

In no particular order

Overkill - The Electric Age. Continuing the good form of Ironbound, this album shows the band as strong as ever. The album features more memorable songs than Ironbound, but perhaps isn't quite as consistent. The band is back meaner and angrier than ever.

Rush - Clockwork Angels. Proving that age is no barrier to producing good music (though Black Sabbath / Heaven & Hell proved a few years back) Rush produce what is possibly the best album they've ever written, which given the quality and vastness of their back catalogue is a real statement.

Sigh - In Somniphobia. This piece of insanity continues to amaze almost a year after its release. Flowing between metal, avante-garde, jazz, and whatever else in between, In Somniphobia was easily the best weird album to come out this year.

Steel Assassin - WWII: Metal of Honour. The old school power metallers continue onwards from the brilliant War of the Eight Saints. This balls to the wall effort is what power metal should sound like. It's aggressive, fast, in your face, and really doesn't let up.

Cannibal Corpse - Torture. The best thing Cannibal Corpse has ever released. The band appear to have found their way after a disappointing release. This also showcases an ever more mature Cannibal Corpse. I for one hope they continue in this vein.

Ne Obliviscaris - Portal of I. There's not a lot I can say about this that hasn't already been said. It's just a shame it took 5 years to come out. Easily the best black metal I've heard in modern times, which is broken up nicely by the atmospheric sections.

Hellwell - Beyond the Boundaries of Sin. It stars 2 of Manilla Road, and was written by Mark Shelton. This is a Manilla Road record with keyboards added. Atleast one of the songs was written for Playground of the Damned. Manilla Road are up there for consistency with bands such as Bolt Thrower. You know what you're getting here.

Ereb Altor - Gastrike. Ereb Altor lose nothing of their doomy atmospheric approach while heading closer to black metal territory.

Honorable mentions to Heretic, Malice, Rituals of the Oak, Carach Angren and Dark Empire.

The disappointing:

Angel Witch - As Above, So Below. After reading a lot about this in the lead up to its release, it really was hard to not be disppointed with the final product. The album really was sub par, even compared to the bands mid 80's efforts. The songs that were written back in the 80's which were left off the bands discography until now really should have remained lost in the 80's. The songs written for the album were a little better, but the one shining light on the album was the opening track.

Kreator - Phantom Antichrist. Why do they insist on this modern melodic approach? The band really needs to get back to its 80's no bullshit thrash approach. When the highlight on an album is covers - predictable ones at that - you're in trouble. Mille really needs to find his balls and go back to writing the thrash the band became known for. Fuck, if Overkill can do it, so can Kreator.

Wintersun - Time I. Similar to Angel Witch's mention here. When the debut track is your best effort, the album is in trouble. When that track is an instrumental piece, well, one has no words (pun). This album was dour, lame, over produced, and had way too many expectations. This album is in danger of becoming the metal Chinese Democracy. The best part? There will be a Time II. Expect this no doubt equally boring piece to be available early next decade. With any luck, it might come out before the next Guns N' Roses effort.

Running Wild - Shadowmaker. I really didn't have too many expectations for this. But I still expected something. Shadowmaker was just pathetic. Whatever Kasparek was drinking was good stuff, because no sober person in the right mind would release this pile of dirge. The worst thing about this was that there was an album released by a well known band that actually managed to eclipse it in the pure shit category.

Manowar - The Lord of Steel. This album is just a joke. Everything about this albums release was a joke. The "pre-release" in Hammer magazine was the joke of the year. The retail version featuring improved production and a new song was better, but better production can't save shitty song writing. This album has absolutely nothing to offer. Even diehard Manowar fans are unsure of the album. Only the Manowar elites are fighting for this one. But no one ever took them seriously anyway.
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CF_Mono
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:21 pm
Posts: 1446
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:26 am 
 

nosferatu1234 wrote:

I can understand needing to post some descriptions and why an album is in your top 10, but for every person to post a youtube link for every single album? Seems a bit much. If someone feels it just overly necessary to link a song for people to hear because their description can't justify it, than fine, but to make a youtube link mandatory for every single album included in everyone's top 10? There were only so many albums that were released this year... Particular albums are going to be mentioned in the majority of a lot of people's lists. Do we really need a new youtube link each time someone puts it in their top ten list? I mean, ten youtube links for each post? That's a bit overwhelming.

Yeah the extra two minutes of work is a real pain.
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Acidgobblin
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 7:56 pm
Posts: 2234
Location: Antarctica
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 3:25 am 
 

I didn't have a very big year in terms of metal, mainly listening to electronic styles, but I did very much enjoy several releases:

-Deathspell Omega: Drought. These guys just keep getting better; Paracletus was utterly brilliant and this release followed well in its shoes. I really appreciate their use of actual melody on this album; whilst still largely dissonant and almost meandering, there are some great moments of really haunting riffage. Very unique bands. 8.5/10 for this album, only due to the short playing time of the album.

-Merduk: Serpent Sermon. Great release from one the best BM bands. They have efficently resurrected themselves several times now, and added a lot more complexity to their still sledgehammer-to-the-face style. Great performance by Arioch and fucking fantastic drumming; worth listening to for the drumming alone IMO. 8/10

Nothing else has really floored me this year due to the above reasons, but bit of love for Alcest- Les voyages de l'âme, Drudkh- Eternal Turn and Mgla- With Hearts Towards None.
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slavonic777
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2008 7:36 am
Posts: 887
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 4:47 pm 
 

Endezzma - Erotikk Necrosism. It was quite long waiting for this release but already after Alone EP I was convinced about high qualities of this band. There are experienced guys in it and the record is black metal as its best, reminding old bm legends but theres enough variety and the album have its own face. Vocalist is excellent.
http://youtu.be/NZtQ9xPZF5U

Shroud of the Heretic - Boiled to Death EP. Love the MONSTROUS sound of this EP. This is the death/doom metal in the vein of Sonne Adam as I like it. Cant wait for their next release.
http://youtu.be/Mh2VXISa_Uo

Sonne Adam - Doctrines of Dark Devotion EP. What to say... Good as expected and as pretty much everything they released (with Transformation being the weakest link imo).
http://youtu.be/8uGYl8K6VJk

Dol Ammad - Cosmic Gods: Episode I - Hyperspeed. Not fitting to my list at all but I cant help myslef, this synthetic operatic project of Thanasis Lightbridge
totally gets me. Everytime I listen it I have that overwhelming feeling of monumentalness and I found this band to be highly original.
http://youtu.be/X29afbjL_l0

Alchemyst - Nekromanteion. Obscure black death metal, together with Venenum, Beyond and Drowned the best stuff to come from Germany in recent years imo.
http://youtu.be/2-KAjTTyWag

Beyond - Enter Transcendence. As above. Very short but intensive slab of death metal. Heavy as hell.
http://youtu.be/M6o0Qaf-fMg

Hesper Payne - The Strange Tale of Samuel Gonzalez. doom/death metal, Axis of Perdition members. The only release I enjoyed from this band.
http://youtu.be/CDiRQJhbtbQ

Aptorian Demon - Libertus. Norwegian black metal. Strange it had rather average or even bad reviews. My feelings are that this album was done with great zeal and is full of great ideas. So much better than current Keep of Kalessin with which Ghash parted his way.
http://youtu.be/U-6cSloXIaQ

Quadrivium - Methocha. I've only heard one song and few short samples so I should not include this album, but hey! it was so good, at times VERY similar to Arcturus in their best times!. I must get my hands on the whole thing.
http://youtu.be/k58EuRejfGg

Svartidauði - Flesh Cathedral. This is kind of cool and very challenging black metal stuff. Reminds me of bands like Deathspell Omega. I still dont know whether I like it or not, I still have to give it much more spins, but definitely theres something about it...
http://youtu.be/OkL9LiFX-5Q

Kekal - Autonomy. Not very big fan of their bm period (however it is definitely ok stuff) and I didnt like some of their recent stuff either but this newest, experimental/industrial based album I ended liking quite a lot.
http://youtu.be/iJEILeZfH0o

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brandon1986
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2011 3:11 am
Posts: 108
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 6:54 pm 
 

No particular order

Wintersun- Time I(symphonic melodic death metal). I know it received mixed reviews, and waiting for it for 8 years offered frustration amongst other things, but I think Wintersun did a great job adding a new dimension to their music with all the orchestral pieces along with much improved clean vocals from Jari.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dg6yS1WHpvk

The Slow Death- II(death/doom) Great album that is very depressing and is one album that fully captures the feeling of despair and sadness. A concept album about the last remaining people on earth. The female vocals of Mandy Andresen are haunting and depressing, the harsh vocals of Greg Williamson are very well done and brings a very good sense of anger to balance the despair and sadness.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ji-XN1JEA0

Xanthochroid- Blessed He With Boils(epic melodic black metal) A very diverse album to say the least. A mix of black metal, folk,melodic death and a pinch of power metal. The lyrics are very well done, with many different characters in the vein of King diamond's Abigail. Definitely the debut of the year for me.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kI7F2GrNJtE

Daylight Dies-A Frail Becoming(melodic death/doom) A good mix of slow more doom style tracks and more heavy mid tempo melodic death metal style tracks. In these tracks you have just very good harsh vocals of Nathan Ellis and some damn good cleans from Egan O' Rourke.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TUvsa9yuloc

Swallow the Sun- Emerald Forest and the Blackbird(death/doom) A bit more melodic than their earlier stuff. The album just flows from one song to the other perfectly. The scattering of female vocals are done very well, especially on Labyrinth of London
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RqvaDIl9zt4

Astral Sleep- Visions(death/doom) Like the Xanthochroid album this one is very diverse when it comes to the vocals, you have black metal shrieks, some growls and also some very good clean vocals. The 4 track album is very slow and crushing, each song over 13 minutes long. The lyrics are all about dreams, which is a subject I find interesting that really made me connect to the music.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HUVOcf0c0w0

Before the Dawn - Rise of the Phoenix(melodic death metal) Rise of the Phoenix is a shift in sound of sorts for Before the Dawn. Clean vocals in the choruses are now gone, there is a noticeable increase in blast beats, and the general sound of the guitars is slightly heavier than previous releases, this style change is for the better in my opinion.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQqYINRnhng

enslaved- riitiir-(progressive black/viking metal) Enslaved just keep on making great album after great album,this album is more well rounded than the previous 2 albums. The clean vocals of Herbrand Larsen is i think very much improved. The use of keyboards are very well done, especially in the track Death in the Eyes of Dawn.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_O0lROvDY9Q

Dark Empire-(progressive,power/thrash) A different musical direction compared to their first 2 albums. More progressive with a great number of tempo shifts. Also style shifts at one time you could be hearing power metal and then it goes into melodic death metal and then into thrash. It works very well. The almost 14 minute closing track "The Cleansing Fires" shows this very well
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhgYXX6X9go

blind stare- the dividing line(melodic death) Quite extensive use of the keyboards on this album, which is done very well. The vocals are in the mid growl range for the most part although in parts there is some gutteral vocals. As well as clean vocals. The clean and death metal vocals are done in great proportion.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxMkcJh5kss

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androdion
Metal freak

Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 10:34 am
Posts: 4928
Location: Portugal
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 10:23 pm 
 

I'm not really accustomed to making lists of best albums so I'll try to be a bit creative and give my insight of what I thought about this year. My focus is mainly on death metal since it's my favoured genre. Also take into consideration that there are many albums I haven't even heard yet.

This has been an interesting year in terms of reissues and some compilations are worth noticing:

Spoiler: show
Abhorrence - Completely Vulgar -> A marvellous CD edition courtesy of Svart (the same label that reissued Rippikoulu) that presents their demo and EP plus a few live songs that have an almost decent sound. The layout of the digifile imitates a gatefold LP with the CD being inserted on one side and the booklet on the other. The booklet is massive and has liner notes from all band members in a xeroxed paper style. On top of the undeniable value of the music the edition is completely drool worthy.

Autopsy - All Tomorrow's Funerals -> A collection of all their EPs in one digibook with the studio clean up being supervised by the band members. Also present a few new songs and a rerecording of a 1987 song, so all in all a lot of bang for the buck and an excellent way to get into some of the band's smaller pieces of rottenness.

Timeghoul - 1992-1994 Discography -> First time ever on CD of the band's two demos, courtesy of Dark Descent Records that has accustomed us to some quality reissues. Excellent opportunity to get into the band's work and a beatiful six panel digipak. The small cult this band has is somewhat justified and this reissue is probably long sold out given its demand.


There have also been a few bands and albums that disappointed me and these are the ones that did it best:

Spoiler: show
Ahab - The Giant -> Probably the biggest disappointment this year. After two great albums, even though I favour their debut, I was expecting something good. But from the moment I heard the first sample from the new album my nose started to itch. How some people can still call this "funeral doom" is beyond me. Ahab has been pussyfied and could very well become the new best friend of Agalloch fans.

Angel Witch - As Above, So Below -> Being a big fan of the band's early work I have to say it out loud, this album is boring as fuck! There are a couple of moments, a riff here and a solo there, or a bit of an up-tempo shift in the rhythm. But ultimately it's all so phoned in and the vocal performance is so by the book that I can hardly consider this a decent album.

Cryptopsy - Cryptopsy -> Supposedly a return to form with main writer John Levasseur being again in the band. While being undoubtedly an album with the typical signature sound of the band I have to say that it brings nothing new to the table. Matt is still a horrible vocalist not worthy of being at the front of this band and I've honestly lost all hope of ever enjoying one of their albums again.

Gorod - A Perfect Absolution -> I found Transcendence to be somewhat hit and miss and with a new line-up and label everything could happen. What did in the end was that one the more interesting modern tech death bands suddenly started sounding really bad in my ears. There are a lot of elements introduced in their sound, like some polyrhythms and a bit of an added dose of jazz fusion, plus their new singer is horrible. I was expecting much better from them.

Hooded Menace - Effigies of Evil -> Another band I love that seems to be at a loss for fresh ideas. This new album is basically a rehash of their previous but with an even lighter approach and little of that weight characteristic of death/doom. It's almost an heavy metal album with (too many) horror movie samples and gutturals. Lasse is capable of much better than this and the album is passable.

Kreator - Phantom Antichrist -> Oh well, what now Mille?! It's the same album, formula, songs, melodic hooks and whatnot again? So the machine needs to keep running even though the songs suck balls and that Kreator hasn't released a decent album in almost (or probably over) a decade? Some people will eat this up but after so many years listening to the band I can't really vouch for this one. SSDD all the way!


Now to what I've actually enjoyed:

Spoiler: show
Anguish - Through the Archdemon's Head -> Me listening to traditional doom? I can very well thank these guys for doing so with their demented vocalist, good doomy pace and great guitar hooks. Coincidently I went to check Candlemass and Reverend Bizarre after these guys stirring an itch for more of this type of doom.

Asphyx - Deathhammer -> A band that rarely disappoints, coming this year with a major blunt force trauma of an album. Punishing and catchy, it's a beast of an old school album and in line with some of the band's best works. Despite the modern production that will make some people get away from it I say it's probably their best album since 1992. Probably, yeah.

Ataraxy - Revelations of the Ethereal -> Without a doubt the OSDM album of the year for me. Such a monolithic slab of atmosphere drenched Finnish death metal, done by a young Spanish band that is rapidly turning into a personal favourite. In a year with many OSDM albums this is without a doubt the best of the bunch!

Barren Earth - The Devil's Resolve -> One of the few albums, if not the only one, that reaps the teachings of Dan Swano's Moontower and applies it to a modern context. Brilliant album from the Finnish supergroup and a must for anyone into prog rock, Dan Swano or Opeth. Seriously, get this one!

Bound By Entrails - The Stars Bode You Farewell -> One of those albums that suddenly gets a lot of hype from a small segment of people on the web, but one that actually deserves it for once. Very interesting effort on the "extreme prog" front, mixing many different things into a fine piece of music. Not the best thing ever as some have made it but certainly an album worth owning.

Desecresy - The Doom Skeptron -> A clear improvement over the debut and one of the good and solid OSDM albums of the year. The band sounds even more Finnish this time around and the insertion of some Depravity stylings has certainly given them an added flavour. Recommended.

Dodecahedron - Dodecahedron -> One of those cases where the clone is better than the original. Why? Because while the Dutch collective makes use of the DSO formula they've constructed an album that has a clear emphasis on the riffs with added dissonance, very much unlike their primary influence. Anyone into DSO will love this and for me it's even better than them.

Hail Spirit Noir - Pneuma -> A happy accident that I found about while exchanging emails with the guitarist from Transcending Bizarre? and I have to say that it grown on me to become one of the best things I've heard the entire year. Do you want to know how black metal would've sounded in the 70s? Can you imagine King Crimson mixed with Darkthrone? Head into the insanity that is this album, I personally love it more than chips!

Horrendous - The Chills -> Another case of OSDM worship gone right. This one stitches a whole lot of different influences into a happy corpse that wants to rip you apart. Definitely recommended for fans of most regional death metal scenes of the early nineties as it is composed by elements from many of them.

Napalm Death - Utilitarian -> Twenty five years and still ripping! Another powerhouse of a grind album that still has a bit of an added flavour by some clean vocals, saxophones and more. This will please longtime fans as much as newcomers and is a sign that the band doesn't wish to slow down so soon.

Paradise Lost - Tragic Idol -> So this was always going to be good, given the past couple of albums and my undeniable love for the band. But what I got in the end was much more than what I expected and I can safely say that this is probably my favourite album of theirs since Draconian Times!

Process Of Guilt - Faemin -> If you know me you've realized by now that I love this band. If you don't then be warned that I do. I've heard hundreds of albums this year from different time periods but none has struck me as hard as this one, to the point where I actually gave it a perfect score. Finally I can say that one band stroke to hit the genius of Neurosis and managed to do so while still bearing a sense of identity. It's an absolutely brilliant album that is bound to please anyone into the "post" scene, but beware that it's much more aggressive and packs enough tension/release to raze down an entire city block. It's probably the only album I can put alongside Neurosis' "golden age" (92-96) and that is able to stand tall. Enough said!

Undergang - Til Døden Os Skiller -> Another OSDM album to close the list. This one continues to bear the mark of greatness, even if originality isn't a major factor here. The riffs, the atmosphere and the horror movie samples done right (take heed Lasse, this is how you do it!) all convey into a rotten piece of music. Recommended.
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Koji_Sunioj
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sat Dec 22, 2012 6:46 pm
Posts: 8
Location: In the borders of every country
PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 1:50 am 
 

In no order..



Desecresy - The Doom Skeptron

This is old school dm, with doomy elements as well. A finnish band, this is their second record. I haven't heard alot of metalheads talking about this album, but man it has great songwriting in it. All the brutality you'd expect from a Death Metal album, all the anticipation and buildup you'd see in well thought out song layout. Highly recommended.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jv_oPw3jlWc

Katatonia - Dead End Kings

I know I might get heat for this, but everything from The Cold Great Distance to this, has been just great. I didn't care for anything before that to be frank. In fact, I will say that I find this album to be the strongest after TGCD. I don't find it as overdramatic as NITND, nor as cold as TGCD - but somewhere in between. Good songwriting, good melodies etc etc.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJihdZm5qeU

Veiled In Scarlet - Idealism

Melodic DM from Japan. This feels unique to me in a way, because it really feels like it was written from the heart. The riffs almost sound like they could be right out of a Castlevania game, which pretty much is one thing I've always been looking for in a melodic dm band. No frills, no bullshit, just all melodic DM. Melodic DM that doesn't come with all the overproduction and sugary anthems is a big plus for me. I think people that don't like Melodic DM might like this because it sounds more old school.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWrio6Kri5E

Black Breath - Sentenced to Life

This is crust/death metal/death n'roll from Seattle. I was blown away when I first heard this band live, because it had the guitar tone of bands like Dismember and the ferocious, soul ripping tension of punk vocals. While their first album was more tuned towards DM, this one has a better production with a bigger crust emphasis. It's raw, unrelenting, and fun. I would definitely recommend this to someone who likes old school dm and an appreciation for good crust.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AkQ9xMUxpsQ

Converge - All We Love We Leave Behind

This, honestly, is my first real introduction to Converge and I really enjoyed this one. Someone told me that this album is slightly heavier than previous, but I will be sure to check out the discography as well. Apart from the aesthetics, I find this to be very cleverly written, well produced and overall just alot of fun to listen to. All I can say is, if you haven't heard it or aren't really acquainted with the band - definitely give this a shot.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qrq4d7UkwdY

Ataraxy - Revelations of the Ethereal

This is the debut album of the spanish old school DM band, a very good one as well. It has influences from all the big names, especially the american ones like Incantation, Immolation and Morbid Angel. The songs build up really well, instead of going in full throttle. But that's to be appreciated, as it greatly contrasts the sound when the heaviness does kick in. If you into old school DM, much like I am - please do yourself a huge favor and listen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KrADm_caokg

Unfathomable Ruination - Misshapen Congenital Entropy

This is a debut album from UK brutal death metal. I'm quite picky, but for some reason this seemed to be the most solid to me in most of the bands I heard from the same genre this year. I don't know anyone else that knows this album, but give it a listen. It's fantastic, everything you'd expect in good brutal DM. Not much else I can really say here besides that.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XUgRjqKWIyE

Kamikabe - Aberration of Man

Another newcomer with their debut album. Technical DM from the states, with some noticeable core elements imo. But, its great nonetheless. The band is really good at building the song, which most tech DM lacks tbh. The riffs are great, the band delivers.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wW9DH98O67o

Deathspell Omega - Drought

When I think of the word Drought, I think of hopelessness, barren, wide areas of empty uninviting space where nothing lives. Water so scarce, dissipates into thin air as it touches your tongue. This band encompassed all of that into that single word really, really well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JgED7nXlxZE

ah.. there are quite a few more, maybe I will post later.

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Erdrickgr
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Nov 23, 2007 6:44 pm
Posts: 320
Location: PA, US
PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2012 5:40 am 
 

96/100 - Carach Angren - Where the Corpses Sink Forever (Symphonic Black, Netherlands)
The guitars are a bit too low in the mix at times, but that's the only complaint I have about the album, and this is definitely my favorite album of the year. The storytelling, both musically and lyrically, is simply amazing... and come to think of it, this was the first time I read the lyrics straight through on an album in many years.

94/100 - Ea - Ea (Funeral Doom, Russia)
The whole album is a single song, and this is a long, beautiful, peaceful, and at times emotive piece. I wouldn't say it breaks new ground so much as refines and magnifies what was done correctly on previous albums in the genre.

91/100 - Kreator - Phantom Antichrist (Thrash, Germany)
Another good album by these guys, pushing past where they went on Hordes of Chaos and elevating almost every element (the softer bits in particular are much improved).

87/100 - Daylight Dies - A Frail Becoming (Melodic Doom/Death, United States)
Good vocals and guitar work, and a nice variety of sounds here. Definitely more metal than the band logo or album cover would seem to imply.

85/100 - Cannibal Corpse - Torture (Death, United States)
Yes, yes, these guys aren't reinventing the wheel, I know. But this wheel works quite well in fulfilling it's purpose, and I like it, so I certainly don't mind! Some good musical hooks on this album.

84/100 - The Howling Void - The Womb Beyond the World (Funeral Doom, United States)
A bit repetitive at times, and fairly unheavy, but overall a very solid funeral doom release.

82/100 - Merrimack - The Acausal Mass (Black, France)
From the first notes of the first full-length track (after the intro track) these guys had my attention. There are some great moments on this album.

81/100 - Wodensthrone - Curse (Black/Folk, United Kingdom)
A nice mix of elements, with the folk and softer bits being given in the proper amounts, and the metal driving the music when it works best.

80/100 - Nekromantheon - Rise, Vulcan Spectre (Thrash, Norway)
An entertaining album with a nice mix of fast, thrash, intricate, and straight-forward
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Tuesasinus
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2011 5:00 pm
Posts: 20
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2012 1:43 pm 
 

Of the albums I purchased:

Disclaimer: Can't link youtube I'm at work.

1. Katatonia - Dead End Kings
I keep coming back to it to listen to it again and again and again. There is no reason I can put it anywhere else. Best album of the year for me for sure.

2. The Faceless - Autotheism
I absolutely LOVE Opeth so this one came as a surprise to me when I randomly heard it on XM radio, which I hardly listen to as is. I'm one of the people who believe that Opeth stands on it's own and yet here is an album that completely competes with any or all of Opeth's albums. The guitar solo work actually made my hair on my neck stand up because it was so perfectly done. It's a masterpiece. If I bought it earlier than today I'd have given it the album of the year, but I also have heard the single for quite some time now and just didn't jump on it quite yet.

3. Wintersun - Time I
Being that this is my personal list and not what I think is the general feeling this gets ranked here. It's a great album and while short it still offers enough to keep me going after 8 years of no new music. I love the flow of the album and I feel like I go into another place when I listen to it.

4. Meshuggah - Koloss
I like Meshuggah but I have to be in a certain mood to listen to them. This album is the exception. I love how hard it punishes the listener and I love how aggressive it is. The beats are great to listen to and it gives me another great work out mix.

5. Devin Townsend Project - Epicloud
I don't normally like the softer stuff from Devin, but this out is something that I can play for anyone and it's a nice change to what I normally listen to.

6. Dethklok - Dethalbum III
I didn't like the 2nd, but I decided to give this a chance and I'm glad I did. Crush the Industry is awesome and will be a song that I go to over and over again for a long time. I like that each of the songs are different and I like the progression the musicians have made from the first 2 to this album.

7. Carach Angren - Where the Corpses Sink Forever
I still think Lammendam is their best release, but this album is definitely better than Death Came Throw a Phantom Ship. I like the atmosphere and it was fun to listen to. I got sick of the album pretty quickly though so it's not that high on my list.

8. Gojira - L'enfant Sauvage
I think Gojira is hands down one of the best bands to listen to in the gym. The songs got such a nice heavy groove that you just get into it and push hard. I don't like pointing out the gym nonsense because I think people are tards for doing so, but it's still worth pointing out for the sake of the albums I have already discussed. Anyways, I love the guitar work in Explosia with the James Bond'esque guitar sound that really isn't used enough these days. I'll keep listening to this album for sure.

9. Bound by Entrails - The Stars Bode You Farewell
I would easily rate this higher if a proper label took these guys, reformed them, and gave them a respectable re-record so we can all hear this masterpiece the way it should sound. These guys are really good and it is unfortunate they will not do another album.

10. Agalloch - Faustian Echoes
If it wasn't an EP I'd probably rate it higher. I don't listen to this that much, but I definitely like it. It's a good change for Agalloch, although The Mantle is still hands down my favorite album of theirs.

11. Ensiferum - Unsung Heroes
This album is ok, but doesn't even scratch the predecessor. I could always change my opinion of course and have a better appreciation of it later on, but for now I was somewhat disappointed.

12. Fear Factory - The Industrialist
When I heard it the first couple of times it was honestly forgetful. I didn't even realize I'd heard the whole thing till halfway through it on second listen. I will admit that I've listened to it more lately and it could certainly be one of those albums that I fall in love with later, but as of right now I'm just kinda not interested.

13. Anathema - Weather Systems
This was my first purchase of one of them albums and I guess after hearing The Beginning and the End I was kind of expecting something different from them. It's very hard to listen to as it gives you that choking feeling during some sections of it, which certainly makes it a great album. The problem is that it just isn't my thing. My tastes in music is always changing and I could certainly have a different opinion, but for now I'm just not interested except to show my GF that I like other things not in the metal genre.

14. Epica - Requiem for the Indifferent
I keep expecting Epica to be something their not. Idk kind of in the Nightwish fold, but I guess I keep getting disappointed. This album isn't that good anyways save for 1 or 2 songs.

Again, just my opinion for the albums I purchased this year.

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MikeyC
Official Greeter of Broken Hills

Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2006 5:16 am
Posts: 10757
Location: Australia
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 8:22 pm 
 

Erdrickgr wrote:
84/100 - The Howling Void - The Womb Beyond the World (Funeral Doom, United States)
A bit repetitive at times, and fairly unheavy, but overall a very solid funeral doom release.

I would like to get this, actually. I have The Howling Void's other 2 albums and they're quite good.

Tuesasinus wrote:
4. Meshuggah - Koloss
I like Meshuggah but I have to be in a certain mood to listen to them. This album is the exception. I love how hard it punishes the listener and I love how aggressive it is. The beats are great to listen to and it gives me another great work out mix.

This album is merely "okay", and that's coming from a Meshuggah fan. Don't get me wrong, it's got some great songs on it, but it won't be getting in my top 10 this year, I don't think.
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Jonpo
Hypercolombowler

Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2007 10:05 am
Posts: 4496
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 8:34 pm 
 

So is Dave really the only one listening to Dawnbringer? Or was everyone else unimpressed? I can't make a list as that and Hellwell may be the only 2012 albums I've bought. I'm usually too busy playing catch-up.

Really though, check out the new Dawnbringer.
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lord_ghengis
Metal freak

Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2006 8:31 pm
Posts: 5383
Location: Australia
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:05 pm 
 

Dawnbringer starts really well but then the last three or four are all slower longer songs which fail to impress. The uptempo rocking is the only side that stands out.
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Jonpo
Hypercolombowler

Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2007 10:05 am
Posts: 4496
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:13 pm 
 

Did you write a review that said something to the same eeffect? Maybe I've just read it from multiple folks. It strikes me funny though, the second half is definitely the stronger for me, with VI being my favorite. That song mixes in the Uriah Heep styled organ with the cast-off Iommi riff so perfectly, gets me everytime.
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