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She Likes It Heavy

Jan 16, 2013

COUNTDOWN TO THE #1 ALBUM (listed at the bottom)! Check out last week's show for the #2 album (Converge) and the rest of the top albums

Best Drumming: Dragged Into Sunlight

Conceptual majestic blackened crust. The band members are anonymous (do not give out their names), wear masks and play live in the dark.

Best Jams: Horisont

Horisont's second album is better than both Witchcraft's and Graveyard's offerings in 2012. Bluesy organic 70's in a hot Swedish package.

Time Warrior: Horisont (Sweden) Album: Second Assault (9:10-13:38)

Best Energy/Mosh: Xibalba

Party in your pants, moshing and fun.

No Serenity: Xibalba (California) Album: Hasta La Muerte (14:13-18:06)

Best Ballads: Pallbearer

Romantic without falling into the trap of sounding like Isis. I started my love for this band early on, hoping they were best friends with Deadbird (both from Arkansas). The vocals are emotional, great riffs an added bonus.

The Legend: Pallbearer (Arkansas) Album: Sorrow and Extinction (19:02-27:22)

Best Whimsical/Fantasy Metal: Ihsahn

European cheese, yes, but new ideas of progressive with badass riffs and jazz infusion. Original, fun album. Yes, he sings, so that is immediate cheese – but the creation is great.  Ihsahn appearing at both Roadburn and Maryland Deathfest.

Arrival: Ihsahn (Norway) Album: Eremita (28:53-34:01)

Best Whiskey Rock: Orange Goblin

Whattup, party, whiskey and smoke and shit.

Red Tide Rising: Orange Goblin (U.K.) Album: A Eulogy For The Damned (34:34-39:15)

Best Transitions: Gojira

Technical progressive, but not pounding harshness that I hate. Not pretentious, but yet dense and rich with sound.

The Axe: Gojira (France) Album: L'enfant sauvage (40:03-44:34)

Best Doom Drone: Black Shape of Nexus

Vacuuming music.

Illinois: Black Shape of Nexus (Germany) Album: Negative Black (45:24-50:56)

Best Vocals: Bezoar

Almost #1, Converge and Sigh just beat it. Female proud to sing like a chick; brutal riffs helping her. Great songwriting.

Vitamin B: Bezoar(Brooklyn) Album: Wyt Deth (52:02-57:31)

Best Unorthodox Brutal/Avant-Garde AND # 1 Album of 2012: Sigh (Japan)

Early 2012 contender for best, ended up being the best. Old school Japanese, need I say more. Fusion of craziness, tight, righteous, crazy, headbangy, unlike anything else.

Purgatorium: Sigh (Japan) Album: In Somniphobia (58:29-END!)


Best Epic:

Evoken (New Jersey), Album: Atra Mors

Amenra (Belgium), Album: Mass V

Best Super Group:

Chrome Waves (Chicago), Album: S/T EP: Members from The Atlas Moth, Nachtmystium, Gates of Slumber; darkly romantic vocals and melody

Best (runner-up) Albums by Legendary Bands:

Enslaved (Norway), Album: RIITIIR

High on Fire (Oakland), Album: De Vermis Mysteriis

Swans (NYC), Album: The Seer: Vocalistically, one of the most profound albums of the year, bringing in images of dark folklore.

Runner-up 70’s style bands:

The Graviators (Sweden), Album: Evil Deeds

Heat (Germany), Album: S/T

Runner-up to Best Saturday Afternoon Album:

Trephine (North Carolina), Album: Make: Sounds like part Brainoil, mix in some heavy sludge beats, mix in some ambient and psychedelic, and what you get is Trephine. They are absolutely evil live, brutal. This year’s album is very post-metal, a more melodic guitar running through. The vocals change it from what could be Isis-ish, to a more brutal genre.

Best Stoner-Groove Metal:

Dopethrone (Montreal), Album: III: These boys have absolutely no apologies in how much they think about pot, smoke pot and want you to do the same listening to their music. Our American version of this band would be Weedeater. Dopethrone made my top albums last year, and this new album is even groovier. The vocalist reminds me of Greg from Brainoil, huge compliment.

Best Thick Rock:

Bison B.C. (Vancouver) Album: Lovelessness: Heavy loud doom, as I have described this band before; but the whole album is rich and does not fit neatly in stoner rock. People now hate stoner and sludge, it is just too prolific, where even the forefathers of the genres bore the shit out of me. Bison B.C. puts in some threads of punk that infuses their songs with a lot more energy, and I would imagine makes for good live stuff. Bison B.C., come down to San Francisco, its the same coast.