Albums of the Year 2016

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Subway Diet
 
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Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Subway Diet » Mon Dec 12, 2016 2:05 pm

Time to make a list and check it twice!

-

I've got a top five, but I've yet to nail down the entire list of ten. So, instead, some honourable mentions!

The Lindemann Award for Fastest Burn Out: Sabaton - The Last Stand
Loud, boisterous fun that's about as deep as a puddle. But what a hot couple of weeks those were!

The Devin Townsend Award for "This is really good, but I'm not quite feeling it": Devin Townsend Project - Transcendence
Dude operates on many wavelengths. Some times I can tune all the way in, and other times I just can't find the signal. This was somewhere in between the two extremes.

Video Game Soundtrack of the Year (Brought to you by Doritos and the Schick Hydrobot): Mick Gordon - DOOM
Best soundtrack of the year for the best game of the year. Perfect compliment to the white knuckle adrenaline rush. 8)

The Obscure Bandcamp artist Award for 2015's album of 2016: Neurotech - Evasive / Stigma
Became a firm favourite quickly, and these albums have since rocketed up there in my list of most played.

Dishonourable Mentions (That aren't bad, just not quite to my tastes.)

Abbath - Self Titled
Coming to this all amped up on early Immortal was a bit of a cold, frosty shock. Slightly too plain sounding black metal with the kind of rock and heavy metal sounds I really don't like bolted on to it. Dad Black Metal. ;)

Mortiis - The Great Deceiver
WHAT YEAR IS IT?!
Like a Nine Inch Nails cover band that got lost in the dark, cold forests of Norway in 1994, Mortiis reemerges from his troll hole with a somewhat derivative 90s throwback album. Would have blown some minds back in the day, but now, it sounds all a bit played out.
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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Mantis » Mon Dec 12, 2016 2:12 pm

Nice categories. I can only assume that the Devin Townsend award would probably go to Devin Townsend every year in your case. :P

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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Subway Diet » Mon Dec 12, 2016 2:36 pm

Mantis wrote:Nice categories. I can only assume that the Devin Townsend award would probably go to Devin Townsend every year in your case. :P
Hey, if I was to list out his albums, there would be more likes than dislikes.

You know what, I'm gonna do it. Right now!

Top Tier - Best ever
Infinity
Physicist
Accelerated Evolution
Addicted

Pretty damn good
Biomech
Synchestra
Epicloud
Sky Blue

Good, but not quite my scene
Ziltoid The Omniscient
Ki
Deconstruction
Transcendence

Won't be putting these on any time soon
Terria
Ghost

Not listened to yet
Causalities of Cool
Dark Matters
Those ambient/drone albums he put out
Some obscure demo stuff that won't see the light of day outside of exclusive packages.

And even then, I'm ranking these on gut reactions. I'm sure some stuff could move up or down, depending on mood. That's the fun about Devin. Always finding something new. :P
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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Mantis » Mon Dec 12, 2016 3:12 pm

Okay here's more or less everything I've bought this year. I seem to buy more and more older albums every year, but 2016 hasn't been a bad haul for new releases.

Youtube tracks in the spoilers for the curious.

Stuff that I really really like
The Rigel Axiom - Dynatron
Some amazing spacey soundscapes with rumbling bass.
Spoiler: show


Sorceress - Opeth
Best of the 3 albums they've done since they changed styles up.
Spoiler: show


Kodama - Alcest
Everything this guy releases is gold, no change here. Album of the year number 1.
Spoiler: show


Guidance - Russian Circles
Everything these guys do is also gold. The last four albums have all been crushingly good post metal. Album of the year number 2.
Spoiler: show


The Uncanny Valley - Perturbator
Perturbator. You just cannot beat this guy for monstrously heavy electronic music. More melodic and accessible than Gost but just as heavy.
Spoiler: show


DOOM - Mick Gordon
Best video game soundtrack in a long time. Gets you pumped up just listening in isolation. Album of the year number 3.
Spoiler: show


Solid releases that didn't blow me away.
The Shape - Dance with the Dead
More bass heavy dance but with added electric guitar. Their best album so far.

Transcendence - Devin Townsend
More of the same DTP stuff that he has admitted he just churns out now to keep the record company happy whilst he pursues other more ambitious projects. Can be a bit of a drag even for a big fan.

The Bones of a Dying World - If These Trees Could Talk
Not as good as their last album. Decent post rock/metal though.

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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Subway Diet » Tue Dec 13, 2016 1:31 pm

Alright. I think I've got a top 10!
Order is just my preference. I'm sure I'd start moving things around, depending on what mood I'm in at that particular moment. Either way, all of these are awesome!

-

10. Darkher - Realms
Wonderfully moody and dark, straddling the line somewhere between doom and folk.
Spoiler: show

9. Spektr - The Art to Disappear
A brutal, auditory hallucination of an album. The whole thing bristles with itchy anxiety.
Spoiler: show

8. THYX - Headless
Proggy futurepop. Funky and fearless in it's comitment to the concept.
Spoiler: show

7. Perturbator - The Uncanny Valley
The most enjoyable thing I've heard come out of the synthwave scene. Approachable, yet still providing all the neon drenched aggro you could want.
Spoiler: show

6. Assemblage 23 - Endure
Emotionally charged futurepop. Excelent music with intense lyrics that left a lasting impression.
Spoiler: show

5. Inquisition - Bloodshed Across the Empyrean Altar Beyond the Celestial Zenith
Cosmic black metal with a scuzzy, psychedelic rock vibe. Dying frog vocals continue to cause spontaneous horn flipping.
Spoiler: show

4. King Goat - Conduit
The hairiest of doom!
Spoiler: show

3. Twilight Force - Heroes of Mighty Magic
Disney power metal! Doesn't fall into the trap of being deadly serious or completely tounge in cheek. This is simply joyous, wonderful fantasy music that doesn't care if you think it's too geeky because it's off riding a friggin' dragon!
Spoiler: show

2. Mistur - In Memoriam
Head severing blackened folk metal and breathtaking instrumental passages mixed together in near perfection in this evocative, soaring viking epic.
Spoiler: show

1. Anaal Nathrakh - The Whole of the Law
This is an absolute stormer! combining melody and structure with brutality and rage. It's almost lethal in it's potency. Every song brings it's own tricky wrinkle with it, changing the formula up just enough to keep you off balance. Not everyone of them lands perfectly, but when something nails it, it's intense, unhinged brilliance!
Spoiler: show


-

And that's that. :o

Edit: That's not that! Did some more fretting over the number one spot. While In Memoriam is an overall more consistent album, The Whole of the Law projects itself to wild heights with reckless abandon.

Listening to both albums again, back to back. I've got to swap their places.
They're both the best damn albums of 2016!
(that I've heard so far)
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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Rossell » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:55 am

Would like to put in an honorable mention to De La Soul - And The Anonymous Nobody. Best rap album of the year and deserving of the accolades in my opinion. Yet to try the new (and final) Tribe Called Quest album so will report back.
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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Snowy » Wed Dec 28, 2016 8:47 pm

Top 10 for me, in no particular order:

DTP: Transcendence
Katatonia: The Fall of Hearts
Abbath: Abbath
Opeth: Sorceress
Meshuggah: The Violent Sleep of Reason
Khemmis: Hunted
King Goat: Conduit
Gojira: Magma
Insomnium: Winter's Gate
Dark Tranquillity: Atoma
Astronoid: Air

Special "Oh get to fuck" award goes to Metallica for their bloated, dull, lyrically-void load of overhyped and underdelivering flab.
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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Jez » Thu Dec 29, 2016 7:33 pm

Not a single one of them bands I have heard of. Ever. Maybe the fifth one down
Last edited by Jez on Fri Dec 30, 2016 12:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby PaladinAl » Thu Dec 29, 2016 8:06 pm

Subway Diet wrote:Won't be putting these on any time soon
Terria
Ghost

Not listened to yet
Causalities of Cool
Dark Matters
Those ambient/drone albums he put out
Some obscure demo stuff that won't see the light of day outside of exclusive packages.


Terria is one of his best albums IMO, not sure what problem you have with it; isn't that fucking riff on Earth Day enough to make you love it? :wink:

Casualties of Cool is absolute garbage. Can't remember Dark Matters, is it the second Ziltoid? If so, it's alright but not a patch on the first. His ambient stuff is well good if you like ambient. The demo stuff is ESSENTIAL. There's a few tracks of his like War that sort of sounded cooler as demos.

If you have trouble getting a hold of the demos feel free to shoot me a PM and I can work out a way of uploading the copies I have for you.

Also I think you missed out his Punky Bruster album, ten points from Gryffindor for that faux pas :wink:
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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Mantis » Thu Dec 29, 2016 8:30 pm

PaladinAl wrote:Casualties of Cool is absolute garbage


What.

The.

Fuck.

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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby PaladinAl » Thu Dec 29, 2016 8:54 pm

Sounds like a joke album to me, like he wasn't even trying. Even the name ticks me off a bit. Seriously, the production is shit on the album, barely any layering of instruments at all which is his trademark. "Lucky Animals" is fucking atrocious.
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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Mantis » Thu Dec 29, 2016 9:21 pm

Lucky Animals is on Epicloud :?

Casualties of Cool is anything but a joke album where he didn't try; he talked a lot in the run up to the album and in his autobiography which I recently read that CoC is an exact expression of his frame of mind at that time and that he was probably more satisfied with it than any other album. He made it slowly over the course of 3 years and had to crowd fund the production because his record label wouldn't release it. You have to be in the right mindset for his more mellow stuff, but it's perfect down tempo spooky country music to chill out to. It was also incredible live at the Union Chapel.

I tend to find that whenever he makes a record where he can really express himself and not just churn it out because the label demands, he always produces far more interesting and darker stuff. Ki, Ghost, Casualties of Cool and Devlab are some of my favourites and they're about as far removed from his conventional metal-pop-prog thing as it gets. He does the heavy stuff like one of the best, but he's always more interesting when they fully let him off the leash to do his own thing.

If you're just mistaking CoC for Epicloud then I would lean towards agreeing with you. I really dug that album when it came out because of how happy it was, but you can certainly tell that he wasn't as invested in it as others. In his book he even wrote that he'd been listening to a lot of pop music at the time and wanted to just do a metal pop album to keep the bills paid and the label happy. In reality he thought that the DTP was over by that point.

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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby PaladinAl » Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:11 pm

Mantis wrote:If you're just mistaking CoC for Epicloud then I would lean towards agreeing with you. I really dug that album when it came out because of how happy it was, but you can certainly tell that he wasn't as invested in it as others. In his book he even wrote that he'd been listening to a lot of pop music at the time and wanted to just do a metal pop album to keep the bills paid and the label happy. In reality he thought that the DTP was over by that point.


I bloody was thinking of Epicloud, egg all over my face :oops:

EDIT: He played the Union Chapel? That must've been lovely, great venue that.
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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Mantis » Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:21 pm

Yeah he's played there a couple of times. Once for Ghost and again for CoC, both were pretty special. Ghost was off the back of doing the other three original Project albums back to back though so it was extra memorable.

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Re: Albums of the Year 2016

Postby Subway Diet » Fri Dec 30, 2016 8:16 am

Just for Al, I'll spin Terria today. See if my thoughts have changed over the past four years.

Also nice to know the music I've been enjoying from the guy is punted out for a buck. In my defence, his half-ass is better than most peoples full-ass.

(Also also - Punky Brüster has some pretty fun tracks, what with having known a few fake punks in my day. :P )
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