Unabletothinkofname's Albums of the Year

2010 was a great year for albums, but on the whole, not so great for metal. We lost many people this year-Dio, Paul Gray, Pete Steele...I could go on. That doesn't mean there weren't many great albums released this year, and so I present:

UNABLETOTHINKOFNAME'S TOP 20 ALBUMS OF THE YEAR

20

Rolo Tomassi

Cosmology

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As I've said before, I'm a big fan of math and alternative metal. Love it to bits. Doesn't weird me out at all. However, the breakdown about 30 seconds into French Motel, one of many excellent songs on the album, is probably the most jarring thing I've ever heard. I just can't get my head around it. At all. And yet...it works. Much like the rest of the album. Rolo have mastered on their second album the perfect balance between melody and all-out chaotic aggression.
The wonky synths add another layer of weird but it's nicely countered by Eva Spence's angelic croon, that is, when she's not roaring her face off (yep, that's a GIRL, people). Spastic and unpredictable, but utterly fantastic. (For fans of: Genghis Tron, iwrestledabearonce)

Recommended tracks: Party Wounds/Sakia/Tongue-in-Chic

19

Parkway Drive

Deep Blue

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A concept album about a man who walks to the bottom of the sea to find the answers to life is a pretty high-brow concept, especially considering it's come from a metalcore band, who are generally about able to pin songs about "fucked up shit" (I'm looking at you, Matt Tuck). Don't let the ferocious slugging beatdowns that are slathered over all the album fool you-this is about as high-brow and introspective as metalcore gets.
Vocalist Winston McCall has the enviable ability to inject massive hooks into the music without ever using clean vocals, most notably on the epic Home is For the Heartless (featuring Bad Religion's Brett Gurewitz). Even if you're on paper as someone who dislikes the genre (hello, me) I advise you to pick this up. (For fans of: Lamb of God, As I Lay Dying)
Recommended Tracks: Sleepwalker/Alone/Home Is For The Heartless

18

Anathema

We're Here Because We're Here

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Beginning originally in the early 90's as a death-doom band in the vein of Paradise Lost and My Dying Bride, Anathema have gradually evolved and mellowed. It's been seven years since their last full album, and it's worth it, too.
10 glorious tracks of beautiful, atmospheric progressive rock, We're Here is a perfect example of how, much like Porcupine Tree (whose frontman Steven Wilson has produced this), the metal community has so readily embraced a palpably non-metal band. The self-helpy lyrical statements can be a little cringeworthy, but the sheer air of joy that surrounds the album more than makes up for it. (For fans of: Porcupine Tree, Oceansize)
Recommended Tracks: Hindsight/Universal/A Simple Mistake


17
Ozzy Osbourne
Scream

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Sure, the lyrics can be cringeworthy. In fact they are most of the time. Sure, his voice isn't that good, and sure, he may not be as sharp as ever. Who gives a shit? It's Ozzy, and he's made an awesome new album.
With new guitarist Gus G using a cleaner tone than his predecessor, the monolithic Zakk Wylde, the riffs shine through better than ever, as do the solos, such as on the pounding Let Me Hear You Scream. It's surprisingly diverse, too, all the way to the final send-off I Love You All. Brilliant. (For fans of: ...Ozzy, mate)
Recommended Tracks: Let Me Hear You Scream/Diggin' Me Down/Let It Die

16
Cancer Bats
Bears, Mayors, Scraps And Bones

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From the sludgy drone of bongtastic opener Sleep This Away it's clear Cancer Bats have progressed past the hyperactive party hardcore of their previous two albums to become one of the truly great bands of their generation.
The beefed-up guitars do more than chug relentlessly (though there's plenty of that), there's more tone in Liam Cormier's voice at long last (though his impressive roar remains intact). Diverse, and never anything less than punishingly heavy until the final grinding notes of their glorious cover of the Beastie Boys' Sabotage draws the album to a close. (For fans of: Gallows, Hatebreed)

15
Kylesa
Spiral Shadow

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One of many bands from the sludge metal haven of Atlanta, Georgia, that has also spawned Baroness, Black Tusk, Zoroaster and prog behemoths Mastodon, Kylesa struck the big time with 2009's stunning Static Tensions and Spiral Shadow might be even better.
Taking a more song-structured approach, the songs are shorter, the atmospheric guitar intros nicely matched by the thundering roars of the chorus and the diversity of their three vocalists, all driven by their dual-drumkit rhythmic assault. Powerful, groovy and never less than utterly stunning. (For fans of: Kyuss, Melvins)
Recommended Tracks: Tired Climb/Drop Out/Crowded Road

14
Killing Joke
Absolute Dissent

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The first KJ album in 28 years to be recorded by the original lineup is a return to their roots, unsurprisingly. Mixing thundering heaviness with throbbing, cerebral dub, much like their debut, Dissent is a return to form, certainly, but for a band who were never really off form, that doesn't say much. Let me then put it this way-if you're a fan of modern alternative or industrial metal, you need this album. Welcome back. (For fans of: Fear Factory, Godflesh)
Recommended Tracks: Endgame/The Raven King/Ghosts of Ladbroke Grove

13
Electric Wizard
Black Masses

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Even from the fact they've named their album after Ozzy's gloriously failed attempt to rhyme it's obvious that Electric Wizard like their drugs (if you hadn't known that before). They've already made heavier albums than this, but now the Wizard have embraced the full-on psychedelic side of doom they always hinted at, but was buried at beneath the walls of solid guitars. Extreme metal doesn't like being reminded of its body-whether the fetishistic slaughterhouse of death metal to black metal's almost religious chastity. Doom metal might pretend otherwise but the Wizard's three favourite things are witches, boobs, and weed. Fuck yeah. (For fans of: Sleep, Monster Magnet)
Recommended Tracks: Venus in Furs/Satyr IX/Crypt of Drugula

12
Triptykon
Eparistera Daimones

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When Celtic Frost split up-no, let's be honest, imploded-in 2007, Tom G Warrior was not a happy man. Well, he's never happy, but...ANYWAY. The story is, he started Triptykon to carry on what he started with Frost's 2006 opus Monotheist, and did it work. Taking the previous album's flirtation with goth and doom metal and taking it even further, Eparistera is one of the most nihilistically draining albums I've ever heard, and 20-minute closer
The Prolonging is up there with Godflesh's Pure II with songs that make me curl up in a ball and hug my pillow. Alternately thrashy (see a Thousand Lies) and stunningly quiet (My Pain), this is the finest extreme metal album of the year by some distance. (For Fans Of: Celtic Frost, Watain)
Reccomended Tracks: In Shrouds Decayed/A Thousand Lies/Myopic Empire

11
Korn
Remember Who You Are

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Korn, for the last few years, have not been at their critical peak. Once a credible influence on modern music, since the departure of guitarist Brian "Head" Welch in 2005 and drummer David Silvera a few years later, they've been floundering, a band who have totally forgotten their roots.
Reuniting with Ross Robinson, famed producer/nutcase, on this album, has led them to their rebirth--this is Korn at their best in years, groovy and aggressive. You could almost believe Johnathan Davis isn't 40 and married to a pornstar. The anger that pervades this album is incredibly real, and quite surprising in places. New drummer Ray Luzier is a powerhouse, and...I can't say enough good things about it. Buy it. (For Fans Of: Deftones, Slipknot)
Recommended Tracks: Oildale (Leave Me Alone)/Let The Guilt Go/Are You Ready To Live

10
Mongo Ninja
No Cunt For Old Men

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I have no idea where to begin with this. I guess I'll start off with some backstory: Mongo Ninja are the result of a collision of Norwegian death'n'rollers The Cumshots with fellow Norwegian thrashers Blood Tsunami, all in their mid 30's. As you might have guessed, this is not a pleasent album.
That doesn't stop it from being utterly fucking brilliant though, whether at its most hilarious (the charming Wheelchair Hooker and Broken Cock) to its bitterly nihilistic (Shotgun Wound (My Last Tattoo), Fuck It All), all delivered in ferocious, snarling blackened gonzo-thrash. Perfect. (For Fans Of: Bathory, Dead Kennedys)
Recommended Tracks: Dead To Me/Wheelchair Hooker/Broken Cock

9
Four Year Strong
Enemy Of The World

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Punk is a fairly diverse world: the album I've just spoken out is furious, gory, grimy, horny and just plain bad. Four Year Strong are the complete opposite. Undeniably pop-punk, their melodies, while wonderfully uplifting, are tempered by a strong modicum of grit, and their punk edge is more hardcore, in common with Gorilla Biscuits and Sick of It All.
Combining heavy beatdowns with the soaring melodies of twin vocalists Alan Day and Dan O'Connor may seem incongruous, but it works, and it works brilliantly. Goofy while always being able to be taken seriously, it's absolutely wonderful, and one of the few albums on this list I can genuinely describe as making me smile while I'm headbanging. (For Fans Of: A Day To Remember, New Found Glory)
Reccomended Tracks: It Must Really Suck to Be Four Year Strong Right Now/Find My Way Back/Enemy Of The World

8
Cathedral
The Guessing Game

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To be quite stereotypical, the best way to sum up the new Cathedral is "Whoa, man." The addition of classic keyboards to their sound has put them among the ranks of the classic prog bands Lee Dorrian so adores, though they've not gone into droney noodling either-their crushingly heavy doom remains intact, delivered at a surprising pace at times (such as fantastic thudding opener Immaculate Misconception).
A concept album of sorts about the journey through human life, it deserves to stand not only among the best Cathedral albums, but the best doom albums, full stop. On two discs with nearly 90 minutes of music (a double album-what could be more rock?), it's a heroic testament to this band's suitably legendary status. (For fans of: Kyuss, Black Sabbath)
Recommended Tracks: Funeral of Dreams/Edwige's Eyes/Journeys Into Jade

7
City Of Fire
City Of Fire

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Now that Fear Factory are back and more brutal than ever (more about that later) it's the perfect time for Burton C Bell to flex his vocal chords elsewhere-Fear Factory are all about massive hooks combined with brutal sped-up heaviness, and the hooks remain, but with a backing suggestive of the first, and best, grunge bands.
Mixing soaring, U2-ish melodies on Rising with a lumbering, Godflesh-like heavyosity on Spirit Guide, complete with eerie digi-psych vocals, and concluding with a stunning cover of The Cult's Rain, this is alternative rock at it's finest, easily. Utterly sublime. (For Fans Of: Soundgarden, Warrior Soul)
Recommended Tracks: Rising/Spirit Guide/Rain

6
Kvelertak
Kvelertak

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The best way to describe this album would be for me to tear my shirt off, pour a can of beer over my head and run around screaming the band's name and various Norwegian obscenities. That should tell you plenty, though, I'll elaborate: Kvelertak are a Norwegian band playing a unique mixture of black metal, hardcore and rock'n'roll. If this seems incongruous, I thought so at first: until I heard it.
Kvelertak are 2010's surprise success story, a band that's united the metal community under one flag, despite their weirdness. And it's not hard to see why: the album is amazing. From the howling Mjod to the ferocious tri-guitar attack of Fossegrim, it's hook-stuffed, gloriously groovy and simply nuts. All together now: "KVELERTAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAK!"
(For Fans of: Nachtysmium, Turbonegro)
Recommended Tracks: Mjod/Fossegrim/Sultans of Satan

5
Bring Me The Horizon
There Is A Hell...

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As divisive as they are, and many critics remain, but certainly a lot of them disappeared when the controversial Sheffield metalcore kids dropped their third album. A huge progression from 2008's Suicide Season, it took the electronic flourishes and guest clean vocals and took them further than anyone thought they were capable of, including me.
From start to finish it's heavily progressive and varied, the choruses beefed up, and much like the Cancer Bats album, Oli Sykes has injected considerably more tone into his vocals, with guest spots from You Me At Six's Josh Franeschi and electro-pop singer Lights lightening the mood slightly. Bleaker and far more powerful than its predecessor, more than any album this year, this sets the bar for metalcore bands-and doubtlessly, few shall meet or surpass it. (For Fans Of: Architects, In Flames. Read my full review here.)
Recommended Tracks: Crucify Me/Fuck/Blessed With A Curse

4
The Dillinger Escape Plan
Option Paralysis

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Straight from the opening power chords of Farewell Mona Lisa, it's clear-oh, nope, there's the mathcore.
Yep, Dillinger Escape Plan have progressed, of course they have. Keeping up their apparent trend of getting better with every release, the midsection of the aforementioned track sounds more like Faith No More than their grinding earlier work, and this is reflected right throughout the album.
There's all the math rage you could want (see the impenetrable Endless Endings) but it's on the lengthier, experimental tracks, like the piano-led Widower and the stunning electronic drone of closer Parasitic Twins. The album's central concept is a powerful message warning against the dangers of technology (to quote frontman Greg Puciato "a band could put their demos on MySpace, get signed, and become famous, theoretically, without ever leaving their room.")
While it's certainly not easy, get past the layers of synapse-melting mathcore and you have Dillinger's most diverse, most accessible and, for some, best yet. (For Fans Of: Converge, NiN)
Recommended Tracks: Farewell, Mona Lisa/Chinese Whispers/Widower

3
Iron Maiden
The Final Frontier

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There's not much left for me to say about this album after my previous review, so I'll leave it short: this album is immense. From the faux-industrial intro of Satellite 15...The Final Frontier to the mountainous second half beginning with the sweeping epic Isle Of Avalon, it certainly requires time to sink in, much like its predecessor, A Matter Of Life And Death.
Containing some of the finest Maiden material since their 80's heyday (closer When The Wild Wind Blows is simply beautiful), it's an incredible statement from a band whom most of their peers have drifted comfortably into retirement age, content to bash out their old hits. Maiden do not rest on their laurels, and long may they reign. (For Fans Of: Judas Preist, Dream Theater)
Recommended Tracks: El Dorado/Isle Of Avalon/The Talisman

2
High On Fire
Snakes For The Divine

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As soon as that immense riff hit my ears, I knew Snakes For The Divine was going to be one of the most metal albums I've ever heard, not even of the year. Based around David Icke's theory that Adam's first wife Lilith ate her own young and took on reptoid DNA (METAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAL!) and becoming the snake-woman you can see on the cover, Snakes is...well...it's just METAL. There's so much else I could say about the album, but that one word just sums it perfectly up. Their mix of classic metal power, furious thrash and epic desert rock is just...awesome. Listen to it, prepare to air guitar, and bang your fucking head off. (For Fans of: Slayer, Motorhead)
Recommended Tracks: Snakes For The Divine/Frost Hammer/Fire, Flood & Plague

1
Fear Factory
Mechanize

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Yeah, well, you know. I love this album so much I'm probably known as "that guy who never shuts up about Fear Factory". I don't care. I love this album and this band more than you can imagine. From the opening drone of the title track to sublime and epic closer Final Exit, this is...just perfect. I do not have a single bad thing to say about this album, and while I've said that before, this is just a sheer monolithic testament to the power of heavy metal. This fucking slays. End of. (For Fans Of: Godflesh, Strapping Young Lad. Read my full review here.

Recommended Tracks: Fear Campaign/Christploitation/Final Exit

Unabletothinkofname:

1
Fear Factory
Mechanize


Yeah, well, you know. I love this album so much I'm probably known as "that guy who never shuts up about Fear Factory". I don't care. I love this album and this band more than you can imagine. From the opening drone of the title track to sublime and epic closer Final Exit, this is...just perfect. [/url]

Couldn't agree more... thier best album since Demanufacture. Final Exit is prob my song of the year too, such a beautiful and soul-lifting piece of work.

Then again, how could Burton, Dino and Gene Hoglan together ever be anything but amazing?

MiracleOfSound:

Unabletothinkofname:

1
Fear Factory
Mechanize


Yeah, well, you know. I love this album so much I'm probably known as "that guy who never shuts up about Fear Factory". I don't care. I love this album and this band more than you can imagine. From the opening drone of the title track to sublime and epic closer Final Exit, this is...just perfect. [/url]

Couldn't agree more... thier best album since Demanufacture. Final Exit is prob my song of the year too, such a beautiful and soul-lifting piece of work.

Then again, how could Burton, Dino and Gene Hoglan together ever be anything but amazing?

I agree wholeheartedly. :D I'd like to know your albums of the year, though, and what you thought of the rest of the list?

Gee, I wonder what genre of music you like. :D

Unabletothinkofname:
[
I agree wholeheartedly. :D I'd like to know your albums of the year, though, and what you thought of the rest of the list?

I liked so few albums this year, I didn't really have a top 5. I enjoyed Pendulum's album, Devin Townsend's One and Mechanise!

Oh and the new Deftones album is awesome too.

As for your top 5, haven't heard any of the others but I do have 3 Anathema albums and think they have been completely amazing since they scrapped the death and went all melodic.

MiracleOfSound:

Unabletothinkofname:
[
I agree wholeheartedly. :D I'd like to know your albums of the year, though, and what you thought of the rest of the list?

I liked so few albums this year, I didn't really have a top 5. I enjoyed Pendulum's album, Devin Townsend's One and Mechanise!

Oh and the new Deftones album is awesome too.

Devin Townsend's album came out last year, actually. I know because I listened to it constantly throughout christmas.
Also, wikipedia says so.

Yeah, i found it a pretty barren year for music too, nearly everything I got was from last year, or further back.

Except Periphery.
That's a fucking monster of an album.

Edit: Crap, that lists just reminded me, I should have gotten Dillinger Escape Plan, I really liked where they were going on the last album. The grind stuff was alright I guess, as samey as ever, but the more melodic and weird songs were fantastic. If it's even more of that stuff it'll definitely be worth checking out.

No Audio Secrecy or Nightmare?

Ah well, I love lots of these choices (Rolo, Parkway, Maiden, Cancer Bats), nice taste! I still haven't been converted to BMTH though.

May I suggest Trashtalk's Eyes & Nines? Love that album. It's like Cancer Bats on steroids!

Outright Villainy:

Devin Townsend's album came out last year, actually. I know because I listened to it constantly throughout christmas.

My bad

Outright Villainy:

Except Periphery.
That's a fucking monster of an album.

That was cool actually, liked it. The guitars reminded me of Meshuggah

MiracleOfSound:

That was cool actually, liked it. The guitars reminded me of Meshuggah

Yeah, there's a definite Meshuggah influence there, especially on The Walk. Neck snappingly good, that one.

I much prefer em to Meshuggah though, mainly because I like a bit of a mix in my albums, and I can't really listen to Meshuggah for more than a few tracks at a time.

That said, Combustion is one of best songs ever.

TheRightToArmBears:
No Audio Secrecy or Nightmare?

Both of those are the sort of radio friendly metalcore/hard rock (respectively) I usually dislike, but in both cases I found both albums pretty good. I enjoyed Mission Statement from Audio Secrecy and Fiction and the title track from Nightmare.

Ah well, I love lots of these choices (Rolo, Parkway, Maiden, Cancer Bats), nice taste! I still haven't been converted to BMTH though.

Not surprised. :P A lot of people still can't make it past the image, derp derp.

May I suggest Trashtalk's Eyes & Nines? Love that album. It's like Cancer Bats on steroids!

Amazing album that I completely forgot about. It's like getting punched in the face for 19 minutes. It completely slipped my mind unfortunately! D:

Outright Villainy:

Edit: Crap, that lists just reminded me, I should have gotten Dillinger Escape Plan, I really liked where they were going on the last album. The grind stuff was alright I guess, as samey as ever, but the more melodic and weird songs were fantastic. If it's even more of that stuff it'll definitely be worth checking out.

It's interesting what they've done-they've combined the math/grind aspect (toned down slightly) from Ire Works with the rockier songs like Milk Lizard, so they now have multi-part songs. I'd say look up the tracks I recommended and Parasitic Twins if you want to totally weird out.

Unabletothinkofname:

TheRightToArmBears:
No Audio Secrecy or Nightmare?

Both of those are the sort of radio friendly metalcore/hard rock (respectively) I usually dislike, but in both cases I found both albums pretty good. I enjoyed Mission Statement from Audio Secrecy and Fiction and the title track from Nightmare.

Ah well, I love lots of these choices (Rolo, Parkway, Maiden, Cancer Bats), nice taste! I still haven't been converted to BMTH though.

Not surprised. :P A lot of people still can't make it past the image, derp derp.

May I suggest Trashtalk's Eyes & Nines? Love that album. It's like Cancer Bats on steroids!

Amazing album that I completely forgot about. It's like getting punched in the face for 19 minutes. It completely slipped my mind unfortunately! D:

I'm just not a fan of Oli Sykes... bleh. Hate the lyrics, hate the guy, not big on the look either.

I would suggest Turbowolf's The Big Cut but it's an EP (which you can download for free! :D), and Black Spider's Sons of The North, but it actually comes out next year and they had a pre-sale. But next year that album will be night unbeatable.

TheRightToArmBears:

I'm just not a fan of Oli Sykes... bleh. Hate the lyrics, hate the guy, not big on the look either.

He is a bit of a cock. I do like the emotion in his voice, though, which is missing in a lot of metalcore HELLO BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE YES I'M LOOKING AT YOU MATT TUCK IS ALSO A MASSIVE TWAT.
Sorry. *cough*

I would suggest Turbowolf's The Big Cut but it's an EP (which you can download for free! :D), and Black Spider's Sons of The North, but it actually comes out next year and they had a pre-sale. But next year that album will be night unbeatable.

I cannot WAIT for Sons of the North, but nigh unbeatable in a year of Machine Head, Opeth, DevilDriver and Cavalera Conspiracy albums? That remains to be seen. ;)

Huh, out of the 20 bands you listed I've heard of 8, and out of those 8 I was only aware that 5 of them had released albums this year (one of which is only because I saw you review it here, which is also the only reason I've heard of the band), and out of the 5 albums that I've heard of I haven't actually listened to any of them in their entirety; it's becoming increasingly clear to me that our "best albums of the year" lists don't really align very much, heh.

Anathema certainly sounds interesting based on your description though, and Amazon kept suggesting I'd like High On Fire all year while I ignored it because the snippets didn't really enthuse me, so you may have just prompted me to do some additional musical delving[1].

[1] I'd be more certain if I had any idea what I'm actually going to do from one day to the next, heh.

On a whole, I love Escapist members' music tastes. I agree with a lot of this list. Cancer Bats, BMTH, Parkway Drive, Dillinger Escape Plan, Four Year Strong, Rolo Tomassi all of these are great bands and every album of theirs released this year is pure gold. Excellent choices, OP!

Outright Villainy:

Except Periphery.
That's a fucking monster of an album.

Oh god this album is incredible, absolutely mind-blowing!

My top 5 albums of this year would be (in no particular order):
Parkway Drive - Deep Blue
The Gaslight Anthem - American Sland
Cancer Bats - Bears, Mayors, Scraps & Bones
My Chemical Romance - Danger Days
Bring Me The Horizon - There Is A Hell...

Aaaaagh but then theres Deftones - Diamond Eyes and 36 Crazyfists - Collisions & Castaways
This was a good year for music...

Unabletothinkofname:

TheRightToArmBears:

I'm just not a fan of Oli Sykes... bleh. Hate the lyrics, hate the guy, not big on the look either.

He is a bit of a cock. I do like the emotion in his voice, though, which is missing in a lot of metalcore HELLO BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE YES I'M LOOKING AT YOU MATT TUCK IS ALSO A MASSIVE TWAT.
Sorry. *cough*

I would suggest Turbowolf's The Big Cut but it's an EP (which you can download for free! :D), and Black Spider's Sons of The North, but it actually comes out next year and they had a pre-sale. But next year that album will be night unbeatable.

I cannot WAIT for Sons of the North, but nigh unbeatable in a year of Machine Head, Opeth, DevilDriver and Cavalera Conspiracy albums? That remains to be seen. ;)

In an incredible coincidence, I've just read that Turbowolf and Black Spiders are touring together next year, so woop! But year, MH... And Lamb of God too if I remember correctly. Next year could end up being better than this year, and this year has been great!

Gildan Bladeborn:
Huh, out of the 20 bands you listed I've heard of 8, and out of those 8 I was only aware that 5 of them had released albums this year (one of which is only because I saw you review it here, which is also the only reason I've heard of the band), and out of the 5 albums that I've heard of I haven't actually listened to any of them in their entirety; it's becoming increasingly clear to me that our "best albums of the year" lists don't really align very much, heh.

Anathema certainly sounds interesting based on your description though, and Amazon kept suggesting I'd like High On Fire all year while I ignored it because the snippets didn't really enthuse me, so you may have just prompted me to do some additional musical delving.

I figured you'd comment but didn't expect you to not yell at me for having Bring me The Horizon on there. I think we got off on the wrong foot.

Anyway, yes, if you like Porcupine Tree and Damnation you'll more than likely like Anathema. It is very heavily atmospheric and keyboardy, and while there isn't much thrust, it's a great chillout album.

TheRightToArmBears:

In an incredible coincidence, I've just read that Turbowolf and Black Spiders are touring together next year, so woop! But year, MH... And Lamb of God too if I remember correctly. Next year could end up being better than this year, and this year has been great!

Oh yeah, LoG too! Now I am officially super-excited. :D A lot of those bands have been gradually getting better so if we get another Wrath, The Blackening and Watershed next year I think my head may explode!

As a huge fan of Porcupine Tree I should probably give Anathema a try - especially since SW produced it and if I recall correctly, he said it would've been listed in his this years "Top 3 albums" if he hadn't been working on it. Can't comment on the rest of those albums.

As to my own albums of the year, I can't really comment much, since this year has seen no CD's from my favourite bands, so I'll just list:

Anesthetize - Porcupine Tree's live DVD
In Live Concert at the Royal Albert Hall - Opeth's Live DVD

(both are awesome, but I liked Anesthetize a bit more).

Last year (2009) was pretty good though, because of releases like:
-The Incident - Porcupine Tree
-Blood - OSI
-Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King - Dave Matthews Band (mostly because of their awesome drummer, who is my favourite drummer after Gavin Harrison, Porcupine Tree's drummer).

Trotgar:
As a huge fan of Porcupine Tree I should probably give Anathema a try - especially since SW produced it and if I recall correctly, he said it would've been listed in his this years "Top 3 albums" if he hadn't been working on it. Can't comment on the rest of those albums.

As to my own albums of the year, I can't really comment much, since this year has seen no CD's from my favourite bands, so I'll just list:

Anesthetize - Porcupine Tree's live DVD

Anesthetize is fucking incredible, love the DVD and the song. Dark Matter made me band-nerd-jizz. As well of course because of the performance in its entirety of my favourite ever album. :D

In Live Concert at the Royal Albert Hall - Opeth's Live DVD

(both are awesome, but I liked Anesthetize a bit more).

I don't regret splashing out 40 euro on this, well worth it. Hell it was worth it for The Lotus Eater alone.

Last year (2009) was pretty good though, because of releases like:
-The Incident - Porcupine Tree
-Blood - OSI
-Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King - Dave Matthews Band (mostly because of their awesome drummer, who is my favourite drummer after Gavin Harrison, Porcupine Tree's drummer).

I love Gavin Harrison too. :D My favorites would be Gav, Brann Dailor and Gene Hoglan though. It took a while for The Incident to grow on me but I'd probably put it at 3rd or 4th of my Albums of the Year last year.

Hey, I've heard of two of those bands (Ozzy and Iron Maiden).

My top 10, and mostly much more mellowed-out list:
1. Laura Marling: I Speak Because I Can
2. Frightened Rabbit: The Winter of Mixed Drinks
3. Punch Brothers: Antifogmatic
4. LCD Soundsystem: This Is Happening
5. Vampire Weekend: Contra
6. Spoon: Transference
7. The Roots: How I Got Over
8. Titus Andronicus: The Monitor
9. Kanye West: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
10. The New Pornographers: Together

So...hoo-ray for diversity in musical interests.

Nice, nice... nice. It's far from my music tastes and I think we've both pretty much sussed that out. I'd thought I'd chip in here with my top 5 since I don't feel up to writing out a much longer post over at my thread.

- Total Life Forever by Foals

- Teen Dream by Beach House

- Postcards From a Young Man by Manic Street Preachers

- Real Life Colour by Magic Man

- Hidden by These New Puritans

in no particular order. Though may I suggest that you give Hidden a listen if you're in the mood for something dark/ classical. It really is very good.

Stranger of Sorts:
Nice, nice... nice. It's far from my music tastes and I think we've both pretty much sussed that out. I'd thought I'd chip in here with my top 5 since I don't feel up to writing out a much longer post over at my thread.

- Total Life Forever by Foals

- Teen Dream by Beach House

- Postcards From a Young Man by Manic Street Preachers

- Real Life Colour by Magic Man

- Hidden by These New Puritans

in no particular order. Though may I suggest that you give Hidden a listen if you're in the mood for something dark/ classical. It really is very good.

Postcards is a fantastic album, it was my number 22 or something (I drew up a list that had around 30 that I whittled down, so). I prefer Journal for Plague Lovers still but it's great.

I vaguely remember These New Puritans from my indie phase (yes, it happened, the first half of 2008, before Death Magnetic came out and I found my calling). I didn't particularly like them but looking back if they're anything like Godspeed You Black Emperor I might try them again.

Gildan Bladeborn:
Anathema certainly sounds interesting based on your description though, and Amazon kept suggesting I'd like High On Fire all year while I ignored it because the snippets didn't really enthuse me, so you may have just prompted me to do some additional musical delving.

I read through the High on Fire description, and was genuinely hopeful because the description of just how METAL it was made me think of Judas Priest's Painkiller, my favorite album ever. Then I got to the part where it was recommended for fans of Motorhead and my heart sank. I youtubed the first two tracks suggested anyway, and while it wasn't actually objectively bad, I really didn't like either song at all. Both of my major grievances with Thrash - A. Flabby song length brought on by needless over-repetition of riffs, and B. Constipated-sounding grunted vocals - were indulged in rather shamelessly.

Anyhow, I'll be getting some money for Christmas to spend on music so I'll probably do one of these lists then after I've had a chance to listen properly to some things that I've only heard individual songs off of thus far. I'm guessing that I'll list about 10 albums, and that the only overlap with this list will be The Final Frontier. Ah well, good review, as usual. I'm not sure if I should be irritated or not by the fact that you keep convincing me to try listening to music that I end up not liking.

and 99 songs of a revolution isnt on there
noooooooooooooooooooooooooo

WhamBamSam:

Gildan Bladeborn:
Amazon kept suggesting I'd like High On Fire all year while I ignored it because the snippets didn't really enthuse me, so you may have just prompted me to do some additional musical delving.

I read through the High on Fire description, and was genuinely hopeful because the description of just how METAL it was made me think of Judas Priest's Painkiller, my favorite album ever. Then I got to the part where it was recommended for fans of Motorhead and my heart sank. I youtubed the first two tracks suggested anyway, and while it wasn't actually objectively bad, I really didn't like either song at all. Both of my major grievances with Thrash - A. Flabby song length brought on by needless over-repetition of riffs, and B. Constipated-sounding grunted vocals - were indulged in rather shamelessly.

Well that bodes less well, as my general impression is we have fairly similar viewpoints on Thrash in the main. I think I might still be slightly more inclined to be charitable though, so I'm still curious what I'll think of a full track from the album (30 second snippets can paint less than useful pictures sometimes, heh).

WhamBamSam:
Ah well, good review, as usual. I'm not sure if I should be irritated or not by the fact that you keep convincing me to try listening to music that I end up not liking.

It seems to be Unabletothinkofname's gift.

Unabletothinkofname:
I figured you'd comment but didn't expect you to not yell at me for having Bring me The Horizon on there. I think we got off on the wrong foot.

No worries, you have no reason to fear me taking you to task because of what you choose to write about or endorse, I'll only ever tell you what my own opinion on the subject is, provided you convince me to listen to it (which you typically do even if it is against my better judgment, so take that as the compliment about your writing that it is meant to be, heh). In this example though you already know what I think about Bring Me The Horizon, so there's really nothing to be gained from rehashing it - no matter how acerbic my prose might get, my purpose is never just "trolling for the lulz![1]".

You enjoy what you enjoy, and sometimes our interests happen to overlap, and I'm cool with that.

Unabletothinkofname:
Anyway, yes, if you like Porcupine Tree and Damnation you'll more than likely like Anathema. It is very heavily atmospheric and keyboardy, and while there isn't much thrust, it's a great chillout album.

Well both of those things are true, so I would say that bodes very well for my potential future enjoyment of Anathema (keyboard-heavy and atmospheric is definitely not a detraction in my book); I shall definitely be checking them out at some point in the near future.

[1] You have no idea how physically painful it was to type that section in quotations out, it goes against my very nature to use 'internet speak', shudder.

 

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