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I've been picked up by www.metal-observer.com so many of my reviews will also be online there in the coming weeks. This will in no way affect my status here, other than that I may be reviewing some stuff there that doesn't show up here for genre reasons, and that you'll see one of those annoying links on the bottom of my reviews from now on.
I'm the lead guitarist of 2 unsigned metal projects, Ominous Glory (Symphonic Power Metal) and Frost Giant (Folk/Melodic Death Metal/Hardcore). You can sample some of the extremely rough versions of our material by visiting my myspace page as they are both on my top friends list.
I'm an avid CD collector and a completist, which means I don't do trades. If it is good enough for me to own in the first place, rest assured that I won't be parting with it. If you're interested in exchanging something that you don't want for money, I might be interested depending on the band and the price. I normally don't download albums unless for short term use before either making a purchase or being completely revolted by what I hear and deleting it from my hard drive. I love jewel cases and I loathe digipacks, as every CD collector who enjoys album art should. Unfortunately due to the massive amount of new CDs coming into my collection I've been unable to keep my collection here up to date. I may try to update it at some point, but right now what you see is my collection as of February 2008.
I tend to be a fan of melodic metal, be it of the Power, Traditional, Progressive, Symphonic, Folk/Viking or Gothic variety. As a guitar player, I'm also a big fan of many of the Thrash bands of the 80s such as Overkill and MegaDeth. I detest most Groove Metal, Metalcore, and a good deal of Brutal Death Metal acts aside from the style's originators (Suffocation, Mortal Decay, early Cannibal Corpse). I've been listening to more of the early Death acts of the late 80s and early 90s, as well as some Thrash/Death hybrids that have popped up in the past couple decades, and I've also gotten into some Black Metal acts, mostly in the 1st and 2nd waves respectively. If you have material you want reviewed, I am obsessed with production, so those of you whom do your stuff on old tape recorders might want to look elsewhere for a review. Black Metal acts, particularly Darkthrone clones, are a dime a dozen these days, so think about the quality of the product before you send it.
100 - An album that maximizes all the elements of the genre. Perfection is a relative concept that relates to what an individual looks for in a collection of songs, in my case memorability, quality, musicality and production. If I can stay in another world through the entire album, it's perfect by my standards.
90 to 99 - An excellent album for it's particular genre, well worth seeking out at full price.
80 to 89 - A good album with very few flaws, listens well for most or all it's duration, worth getting at full price.
70 to 79 - A mostly solid listen, maybe a few songs that sound like filler or some uninspired elements, shop for at $10 or less.
60 to 69 - A flawed album that contains a few exceptional songs, worth $7 or less.
50 to 59 - Mediocre or a couple inspired songs surrounded by filler, worth $5 or less.
40 to 49 - Mediocre to annoying, often contains an element that ruins most of the listen, $3 for bargain hunters or completists.
30 to 39 - Poor, worthy of deriding by educated or profane means, not worth seeking out.
20 to 29 - Bad, either completely devoid of worth musically, technically or production wise.
10 to 19 - Terrible, may cause physical pain to listen to, masochists are encouraged to stick to conventional S&M so we can avoid the whole "My son commited suicide because of the music" bullshit from happening yet again.
0 to 9 - It literally stops being aesthetically displeasing and simply becomes either a vulgar insult to the listener or a joke that is so ridiculously funny that it ceases to be such and is instead disturbing. Picture the South Park episode "Scott Tenorman Must Die" ending and place yourself in Scott's shoes and you'll have an idea of what you're in for.
"Remember my fellow critics, as I, you are but one person with an opinion. Its worth is reflected in the joy of those who profit from your words by finding the music that they seek to love. Use them and use them well." (myself)