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Maiden33
11-30-2011, 08:22 PM
Fret not, those who yearn for Progressive, Power, and Traditional/Melodic Metal recommendations from the board's resident guru! :tongue:

I won't be ready to begin posting for another week or so, but what I'm planning on doing is kicking off on Wednesday, December 7th and post 1 album every day from then through the 31st, counting down to 1. I may post an "honorable mentions" on the 6th, or somewhere else along the way. I'm pretty sure I've nailed down which albums to include, just gotta nail down specific rankings.

I opted out of doing more of a general "year in review" which include shows, because I went to an overall low number of shows this year, that a top 10 would be absolutely pointless. I think I went to like 12 or so, including the Armored Saint show I'm going to this Friday.

MPF
11-30-2011, 11:02 PM
Fret not, those who yearn for Progressive, Power, and Traditional/Melodic Metal recommendations from the board's resident guru! :tongue:

I won't be ready to begin posting for another week or so, but what I'm planning on doing is kicking off on Wednesday, December 7th and post 1 album every day from then through the 31st, counting down to 1. I may post an "honorable mentions" on the 6th, or somewhere else along the way. I'm pretty sure I've nailed down which albums to include, just gotta nail down specific rankings.

I opted out of doing more of a general "year in review" which include shows, because I went to an overall low number of shows this year, that a top 10 would be absolutely pointless. I think I went to like 12 or so, including the Armored Saint show I'm going to this Friday.

I wait for this every year. :rocker:

SomewhereInTime72
12-02-2011, 09:03 PM
I want this.

Spiner202
12-03-2011, 07:57 AM
I have the feeling this list might be my favourite. Bring it on :D

Sanitarium78
12-03-2011, 09:14 AM
Cool, a year end list around here where I may have actually heard of the bands and some of the albums that are on it:D

Maiden33
12-05-2011, 09:53 AM
Provided I can get all the relistening in that I want to do today - I should be posting my 5 "honorable mentions" tomorrow, and then kick off the proper countdown on Wednesday at #25!

Seventhzealot
12-05-2011, 10:06 AM
Provided I can get all the relistening in that I want to do today - I should be posting my 5 "honorable mentions" tomorrow, and then kick off the proper countdown on Wednesday at #25!

I'm using the exact same format on my FB apart from the fact that I'll probably do 12 honorable mentions :D

Maiden33
12-05-2011, 10:46 AM
Actually I decided to kick this off in some capacity today with my "5 Biggest Disappointments" of 2011. I like these albums varying degrees - from thinking some are pretty solid and just outside of my top 30-35, to thinking some definitely suck. But the purpose of this is just acknowledging which artists let me down the most. These are in no particular order.

01 Edguy - Age of the Joker
Despite how much I was scared when Rocket Ride came out, and how much Tinnitus Sanctus didn't exactly change anything, I was still hopeful for a new Edguy album. They've been one of my favorite bands for years, Hellfire Club is one of my favorite albums ever made, and Tobias Sammet wrote and released 2 great albums in 2010 with Avantasia. Sadly all my hopes were in vein. I wouldn't say this flat out sucks, there are a handful of tracks I enjoy, but for the first time in the band's career, there are less tracks I enjoy than ones I don't, and a couple of them just flat-out suck. I would say this band is pretty much done at this point, sadly.

02 Dragonland - Under the Grey Banner
Dragonland started out as the band their name would lead you to assume they are - cheesy power metal, but in 2004 they began to change directions with their outstanding album Starfall, and the evolution continued with 2006's Astronomy. I really loved the niche these guys began to carve out for themselves, so it saddens me that guitarist Olof Morck has apparently decided to continue to push that style 5 steps too far in the new project Amaranthe, while Dragonland have somewhat returned to form. That's not REALLY the problem though - the songs just aren't very good. I wasn't even compelled to listen to this album more than twice.

03 FullForce - One
FullForce are a supergroup of Prog/Power musicians, including Cloudscape vocalist Michael Andersson, Hammerfall drummer Anders Johansson, ex-Hammerfall guitarist Stefan Elmgren, and Carl Johann Grimmark of Narnia and Rob Rock fame. I had high expectations for this project, but ultimately, it just didn't deliver. I think songwriting is mainly to blame - the songs just aren't as strong as they should be.

04 Scheepers - Scheepers
The Ralf Scheepers solo album - this one just kinda sucked. This album had a great roster of guests, and I do like Ralf/Primal Fear, so I was definitely expecting to at least get a few great tracks out of it - and opener "Locked in the Dungeon" started off pretty strong. But overall this disc is just pretty damn disappointing.

05 Jag Panzer - Scourge of the Light
It's been almost 7 years since the last Jag Panzer album - long enough that I was wondering whether or not this would even happen. I loved Casting the Stones, and always have been a pretty big Jag Panzer fan - so it honestly really, really bummed me out when this dropped and I was just very underwhelmed by it. Nothing about this is genuinely bad, I just think it's not as good as it should have been - there's nothing much that made me want to keep listening to it. Sadly the band have now parted ways with this as their swan song - but if it took them this long to release an album like this, maybe it was for the best.

Spiner202
12-05-2011, 11:58 AM
It's nice to finally see some Metal albums I recognize on a list (even if they are on a disappointments list).


01 Edguy - Age of the Joker
Despite how much I was scared when Rocket Ride came out, and how much Tinnitus Sanctus didn't exactly change anything, I was still hopeful for a new Edguy album. They've been one of my favorite bands for years, Hellfire Club is one of my favorite albums ever made, and Tobias Sammet wrote and released 2 great albums in 2010 with Avantasia. Sadly all my hopes were in vein. I wouldn't say this flat out sucks, there are a handful of tracks I enjoy, but for the first time in the band's career, there are less tracks I enjoy than ones I don't, and a couple of them just flat-out suck. I would say this band is pretty much done at this point, sadly.

I actually think this album is better than Tinnitus Sanctus. There are a few really cool tracks (the first two and "Two out of Seven") and the rest is certainly listenable. Obviously he's doing way better with Avantasia, and I don't expect Edguy to be amazing again, but I'm not that disappointed with this album (nowhere near my top 10 though). What is disappointing are their recent setlists.

03 FullForce - One
FullForce are a supergroup of Prog/Power musicians, including Cloudscape vocalist Michael Andersson, Hammerfall drummer Anders Johansson, ex-Hammerfall guitarist Stefan Elmgren, and Carl Johann Grimmark of Narnia and Rob Rock fame. I had high expectations for this project, but ultimately, it just didn't deliver. I think songwriting is mainly to blame - the songs just aren't as strong as they should be.

I still haven't heard this one, but I expected a lot out of it. I'm one of the biggest HammerFall fans there is, so I've been waiting since Stefan left Hammerfall for him to return to music.

MPF
12-05-2011, 01:18 PM
I have to agree with all 5 sadly. They were all pretty damn disappointing. :(

Maiden33
12-05-2011, 08:56 PM
I've decided to expand my "Honorable Mentions" list all the way up to a dozen albums, which I've decided to post in two sets of six to keep things manageable. Set 1 will be coming up shortly!

Maiden33
12-05-2011, 09:28 PM
Honorable Mentions, Part 1:
I heard close to 90 albums this year. Technically these are the albums ranked 26th-37th, in some randomized order. So all of these albums are pretty strong, just not quite strong enough to make the proper list.

01 Anubis Gate - Anubis Gate
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51nk6d9%2BQlL._SL500_AA300_.jpg
Ranking this all the way back on the list kinda depresses me, but the truth is this album just didn't quite "do it" for me like the last two Anubis Gate records, especially 2007's Andromeda Unchained. I don't think it's necessarily the singer change, just something about the songs don't really do it for me as much as they should. Nevertheless, the band still does really shine at times and I really respect these guys for being a pretty damn original and unique sounding band in a sea of derivatives.
Featured Track: "Golden Days" (Official Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ravGcKto3I)

02 Serpentine - Living and Dying in High Definition
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-DssmbYGhryE/TmjYKRJ0hVI/AAAAAAAAB-A/hCcjpBFcib8/s1600/SERPENTINE-%2B2011%2B-UK.jpg
2011 has been a great year for the Melodic Rock / AOR genre, as will be reflected by several selections elsewhere on my list. This was one of those "I'll check it out on a whim" sort of things, and I was quite impressed. Certainly nothing new going on here (is there ever in this genre?), just damn catchy and solid songwriting with some memorable performances and hooks - including vocals from TNT vocalist Tony Mills. Definitely worth the time for fans of Journey and the like.
Featured Track: "Dreamer" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-6QB_5nkILo) (Literally my 3rd or 4th choice, but very, very little of this album is on YouTube)

03 Demon's Eye - The Stranger Within
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61MS%2BU2hGEL._SL500_AA300_.jpg
Demon's Eye began as a Deep Purple tribute band, who have now made their own, original album fronted by iconic hard rock vocalist Doogie White (Rainbow, Yngwie Malmsteen, Rata Blanca, etc). The result is a delightfully "retro" sounding 70's hard rock record, as one would expect from a band who began as a Deep Purple tribute. In the right mood this really does it for me, but ultimately I merely really like it, I don't really love it or anything.
Featured Track: "The Best of Times" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2YWGUJzMPbY)

04 Hibria - Blind Ride
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61VaFXjqwAL._SL500_AA300_.jpg
This was a bit of a disappointment for me. Hibria holds my pick for one of the greatest debut albums of all-time with 2004's Defying the Rules, and the follow up in 2008, The Skull Collectors was a damn strong record as well. One of the things that always set this band apart was the virtuosic bass work on their stuff, which sadly, since the departure of their original bassist, is now gone. The band has since turned to a slightly heavier, more down-tuned sound. The songs are a bit more concise than on previous efforts as well. Still, if you really love the idea of Power/Speed metal with balls and some great players, Hibria should be on your "to hear" list.
Featured Track: "Beyond Regrets of the Past" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7x_YStFaH0A)

05 Enbound - And She Says Gold
http://www.metalkingdom.net/album/cover/d65/41050_enbound_and_she_says_gold.jpg
Holy hell - a new power metal band that doesn't suck. Hell, at this point in the game, a power metal album period that doesn't suck is enough to warrant attention from me. Enbound are a great new outfit from Sweden, playing what is best described as traditional, Melodic Power Metal. Hard to say too much beyond that. If this band matures in the right direction from this debut, they may actually have a career ahead of them.
Featured Track: "Combined the Souls" (Official Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xV4qO80k3iI&feature=related)


06 Iron Savior - The Landing
http://www.metalkingdom.net/album/cover/d38/51715_iron_savior_the_landing.jpg
After about four years, Piet Sielck's power metal outfit Iron Savior is back in action with The Landing, which is about as solid of an album as they've ever put out. Iron Savior are honestly just one of those bands who are forever destined to be a "B Circuit" band, and this album does not change that. As I said though, if you like this band and this style (German Power Metal), you can't go wrong, and there's a number of really enjoyable songs. Actually, the record is enjoyable pretty much all the way through.
Featured Track: "Starlight" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ir7c2f-P1hk)

MPF
12-05-2011, 09:49 PM
*realizing this is how I should have made my 55-21 albums in my thread*

D'oh!

Some good albums in there though.

Maiden33
12-06-2011, 06:54 AM
Part two coming up soon!

ravenheart
12-06-2011, 06:56 AM
Demon's Eye is just an honourable mention? Shame on you, Jeff.

Iron Savior and Enbound aren't even worth a status that high.

ravenheart
12-06-2011, 06:57 AM
I wait for this every year. :rocker:

Don't encourage him ;)

Maiden33
12-06-2011, 07:26 AM
Honorable Mentions, Part 2:
Again, I heard around 90 albums this year, so actually do really enjoy all of these albums, they just fall just outside my top 25. These are essentially the albums ranked 26-37th, in some random order.


07 Royal Hunt - Show Me How to Live
http://www.roadrunnerrecords.com/blabbermouth.net/soulflypremiere/rhshowcover.jpg
The return of "classic" Royal Hunt vocalist DC Cooper had many people buzzing with excitement, myself included. Though I enjoy stuff with their other vocalists a lot, something about DC has always felt "natural" for Royal Hunt. I was a little concerned about how fast this album came about though, fearing it would lack in quality songwriting and memorable songs, and sadly I think I was dead on with that fear. The album is still pretty strong, I don't think Royal Hunt could put out an album I don't like, but considering they released my #3 album of 2008, it's a bit of a let-down.
Featured Track: Honestly, not a single song from this is on YouTube. :confused:

08 Mr. Big - What If?
http://www.gibson.com/Files/aaFeaturesImages2010/Mr-Big_What-If.jpg
I've never been a huge Mr. Big fan, always more of a casual admirer because of the talent within the band - I've loved some of their songs, but most of the albums on the whole are underwhelming. This comeback album still isn't a perfect 10, but I genuinely feel it may be the best complete record they've ever made, as the grand majority of the tracks are very enjoyable. I'd say there's still a few fillers, but the bottom line is that "Undertow" and "I Won't Get in My Way" are two of my most-played songs of 2011, hands-down.
Featured Track: "I Won't Get in My Way" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWgMsg_2bT4)

09 Myrath - Tales of the Sand
http://www.cdinzane.com/images/P/MYRATH-TALES%20OF%20THE%20SANDS.jpg
Myrath's 2010 album, "Desert Call" managed to creep up my list all the way to about #15. This band hails from Tunisia and really utilize their musical heritage in their sound - basically sounding like an Arabic Symphony X. At least that was sort of what they did on the previous record. This new album sees the band stripping away the songs a bit, focusing on shorter, more concise songs - which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but I do miss a lot of the "epic" feel of the last record, and I think some of the songs here get a bit same-y as the album goes on. Nevertheless, this band is pretty excellent and worth your time if you're looking for something different.
Featured Track: "Time to Grow" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRv1efKFZQc)

10 The Magnificent - The Magnificent
http://myglobalmind.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/the_magnificent_cover.jpg
It's been so long since the last Circus Maximus record that I'll check out anything vocalist Michael Eriksen is singing on. As I mentioned, it's been a great year for the Melodic Rock/AOR genre, and this album is no exception. There's a few absolute gems here, and Erksen's voice works surprisingly well for this sort of stuff. Some great guitar playing as well, but this stuff isn't for everyone I guess.
Featured Track: Again, nothing on YouTube.

11 Doogie White - As Yet Untitled
http://www.metalkingdom.net/album/cover/d43/50136_doogie_white_as_yet_untitled.jpg
I've been waiting for this much-talked-about Doogie White solo album for several years now. First off, I want to award major points for the great, tongue-in-cheek title. Also, there's some really outstanding songs to be found here, with some great guest appearances from the likes of Marcus Jidell (Evergrey, ex-Royal Hunt), Pontus Norgren (Hammerfall, The Poodles), and Patti Russo (Meat Loaf, Trans-Siberian Orchestra). Sadly, there's three or so songs on here that I just flat-out don't like, so even though there's a half-dozen gems, it's not enough to propel the album that high up my list.
Featured Track: "Lonely" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ug1jiYWIm8c)

12 Voodoo Circle - Broken Heart Syndrome
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-hY1QgAg_Gqw/TWe-c7Pv_5I/AAAAAAAACeU/Dga5mTKN0sk/s1600/CAPA.jpg
Voodoo Circle are a bit of a supergroup consisting of Pink Cream 69 vocalist David Readman, Mat Sinner (Sinner, Primal Fear) on bass, and chief songwriter Alex Beyrodt of Silent Force, Sinner, and Primal Fear. The band's first album was a bit of Yngwie Malmsteen worship, but rather enjoyable. This sophomore record sees them mature a lot beyond that, getting into a very 70's-derived hard rock sound - reminiscent of early Whitesnake, Coverdale-era Deep Purple, and bluesy rock of the like. If that sounds appealing to you, definitely check this out.
Featured Track: "Don't Take My Heart Again" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nOtV36mVaaI)

Maiden33
12-06-2011, 12:29 PM
The response to this isn't giving me a ton of incentive to charge ahead with the actual list. :tongue:

Epidemic Reign
12-06-2011, 12:57 PM
The response to this isn't giving me a ton of incentive to charge ahead with the actual list. :tongue:

I've never heard a single one of those bands :D

But I'm probably going to check each one of them out over the next few days.

Lots of cool album covers anyway!

MPF
12-06-2011, 01:58 PM
The response to this isn't giving me a ton of incentive to charge ahead with the actual list. :tongue:

Sorry man, been a rough couple of days. It will either get better or worse very soon today.

Once I know what's up, and if I still have internet, I will respond more. Everything is solid so far.

Seventhzealot
12-06-2011, 04:15 PM
Honorable Mentions, Part 2:
Again, I heard around 90 albums this year, so actually do really enjoy all of these albums, they just fall just outside my top 25. These are essentially the albums ranked 26-37th, in some random order.


07 Royal Hunt - Show Me How to Live
http://www.roadrunnerrecords.com/blabbermouth.net/soulflypremiere/rhshowcover.jpg
The return of "classic" Royal Hunt vocalist DC Cooper had many people buzzing with excitement, myself included. Though I enjoy stuff with their other vocalists a lot, something about DC has always felt "natural" for Royal Hunt. I was a little concerned about how fast this album came about though, fearing it would lack in quality songwriting and memorable songs, and sadly I think I was dead on with that fear. The album is still pretty strong, I don't think Royal Hunt could put out an album I don't like, but considering they released my #3 album of 2008, it's a bit of a let-down.
Featured Track: Honestly, not a single song from this is on YouTube. :confused:

08 Mr. Big - What If?
http://www.gibson.com/Files/aaFeaturesImages2010/Mr-Big_What-If.jpg
I've never been a huge Mr. Big fan, always more of a casual admirer because of the talent within the band - I've loved some of their songs, but most of the albums on the whole are underwhelming. This comeback album still isn't a perfect 10, but I genuinely feel it may be the best complete record they've ever made, as the grand majority of the tracks are very enjoyable. I'd say there's still a few fillers, but the bottom line is that "Undertow" and "I Won't Get in My Way" are two of my most-played songs of 2011, hands-down.
Featured Track: "I Won't Get in My Way" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWgMsg_2bT4)

09 Myrath - Tales of the Sand
http://www.cdinzane.com/images/P/MYRATH-TALES%20OF%20THE%20SANDS.jpg
Myrath's 2010 album, "Desert Call" managed to creep up my list all the way to about #15. This band hails from Tunisia and really utilize their musical heritage in their sound - basically sounding like an Arabic Symphony X. At least that was sort of what they did on the previous record. This new album sees the band stripping away the songs a bit, focusing on shorter, more concise songs - which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but I do miss a lot of the "epic" feel of the last record, and I think some of the songs here get a bit same-y as the album goes on. Nevertheless, this band is pretty excellent and worth your time if you're looking for something different.
Featured Track: "Time to Grow" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRv1efKFZQc)

10 The Magnificent - The Magnificent
http://myglobalmind.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/the_magnificent_cover.jpg
It's been so long since the last Circus Maximus record that I'll check out anything vocalist Michael Eriksen is singing on. As I mentioned, it's been a great year for the Melodic Rock/AOR genre, and this album is no exception. There's a few absolute gems here, and Erksen's voice works surprisingly well for this sort of stuff. Some great guitar playing as well, but this stuff isn't for everyone I guess.
Featured Track: Again, nothing on YouTube.

11 Doogie White - As Yet Untitled
http://www.metalkingdom.net/album/cover/d43/50136_doogie_white_as_yet_untitled.jpg
I've been waiting for this much-talked-about Doogie White solo album for several years now. First off, I want to award major points for the great, tongue-in-cheek title. Also, there's some really outstanding songs to be found here, with some great guest appearances from the likes of Marcus Jidell (Evergrey, ex-Royal Hunt), Pontus Norgren (Hammerfall, The Poodles), and Patti Russo (Meat Loaf, Trans-Siberian Orchestra). Sadly, there's three or so songs on here that I just flat-out don't like, so even though there's a half-dozen gems, it's not enough to propel the album that high up my list.
Featured Track: "Lonely" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ug1jiYWIm8c)

12 Voodoo Circle - Broken Heart Syndrome
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-hY1QgAg_Gqw/TWe-c7Pv_5I/AAAAAAAACeU/Dga5mTKN0sk/s1600/CAPA.jpg
Voodoo Circle are a bit of a supergroup consisting of Pink Cream 69 vocalist David Readman, Mat Sinner (Sinner, Primal Fear) on bass, and chief songwriter Alex Beyrodt of Silent Force, Sinner, and Primal Fear. The band's first album was a bit of Yngwie Malmsteen worship, but rather enjoyable. This sophomore record sees them mature a lot beyond that, getting into a very 70's-derived hard rock sound - reminiscent of early Whitesnake, Coverdale-era Deep Purple, and bluesy rock of the like. If that sounds appealing to you, definitely check this out.
Featured Track: "Don't Take My Heart Again" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nOtV36mVaaI)


That Myrath album is pretty good. Solid progressive metal with some middle-eastern elements!

SerpentineVIVIVI
12-06-2011, 04:46 PM
I don't usually like to give incentive to stuff like this, but I won't pretend that I relate to the majority of your musical tastes and that you know your stuff, so I would love to see the rest of this list. I need to check out a few of the mentions, although I know most of them. And I'm disappointed that the Anubis Gate and Myrath aren't up there, as well as Mr. Big and a few others. But I still look forward to the list as a whole. :)

xStructualDefect
12-06-2011, 04:49 PM
I didn't even know Dragonland released an album this year. I thought their first 4 releases were solid, but I rarely listen to power metal nowadays so I haven't paid much attention to them.

SomewhereInTime72
12-06-2011, 09:43 PM
Lack of Royal Hunt on youtube is annoying! :bouville:

Epidemic Reign
12-06-2011, 10:40 PM
Lack of Royal Hunt on youtube is annoying! :bouville:

They're on Spotify ;)

ravenheart
12-07-2011, 03:28 AM
The response to this isn't giving me a ton of incentive to charge ahead with the actual list. :tongue:

OK, here goes:

- Myrath's previous album was better
- Demon's Eye should be a lot higher, certainly higher than Doogie's solo album, although that was a damn good album too
- Royal Hunt with Mark Boals > Royal Hunt with DC Cooper
- Placing of Mr. Big and Voodoo Circle is about right, so long as that fucking awful new Sinner album isn't higher
- If any of Holy Force, Ilium, Vinder, Images of Eden, Valsans or Emerald Sun place in your list, I'll find and kill you :tongue:

That do you? ;)

Maiden33
12-07-2011, 09:35 AM
OK, here goes:

- Myrath's previous album was better
- Demon's Eye should be a lot higher, certainly higher than Doogie's solo album, although that was a damn good album too
- Royal Hunt with Mark Boals > Royal Hunt with DC Cooper
- Placing of Mr. Big and Voodoo Circle is about right, so long as that fucking awful new Sinner album isn't higher
- If any of Holy Force, Ilium, Vinder, Images of Eden, Valsans or Emerald Sun place in your list, I'll find and kill you :tongue:

That do you? ;)

-Agreed
-If I would've actually ranked these honorable mentions, Demon's Eye would've been around 26th or 27th - and Doogie's solo album would've been around 34th or 35th.
-Paradox II: Collision Course with Boals is my second-favorite Royal Hunt album, so I obviously love that era of their career. And the last record (X) was still better than the new album. But it's Royal Hunt. They're one of those "by the numbers" bands I can really enjoy.
-I'd ignore this page for the next 24 hours... :eyes:
-I guess I don't have to fear for my life then. :tongue:

Maiden33
12-07-2011, 09:44 AM
#25:
Sinner - One Bullet Left
http://www.cdstarts.de/images/wallpaper/Sinner_OneBulletLeft.jpg
Sinner have never been a frighteningly original band. To be honest, they are downright derivative - that's their "thing". Mat Sinner likes Thin Lizzy - and I mean REALLY likes Thin Lizzy, and that's pretty apparent throughout the majority of this disc. Some of these tracks could come right off a classic Thin Lizzy record, with Mat's vocal phrasing and delivery very similar to that of Phil Lynott's, and some great twin guitar work. Derivative? Yes. I can't deny that. But the bottom line is that I really, really enjoy it, and that's really all that matters to me.
Featured Track: "Back on Trail" (Official Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v6Oi1nnfoPw)

ravenheart
12-07-2011, 06:18 PM
#25:
Sinner - One Bullet Left
http://www.cdstarts.de/images/wallpaper/Sinner_OneBulletLeft.jpg
Sinner have never been a frighteningly original band. To be honest, they are downright derivative - that's their "thing". Mat Sinner likes Thin Lizzy - and I mean REALLY likes Thin Lizzy, and that's pretty apparent throughout the majority of this disc. Some of these tracks could come right off a classic Thin Lizzy record, with Mat's vocal phrasing and delivery very similar to that of Phil Lynott's, and some great twin guitar work. Derivative? Yes. I can't deny that. But the bottom line is that I really, really enjoy it, and that's really all that matters to me.
Featured Track: "Back on Trail" (Official Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v6Oi1nnfoPw)

The presence of this album pretty much invalidates the rest of the list :finger:

maidenpriest
12-07-2011, 06:22 PM
I wait for this every year. :rocker:

Best part of every year lists

powerslave_85
12-07-2011, 06:23 PM
08 Mr. Big - What If?
http://www.gibson.com/Files/aaFeaturesImages2010/Mr-Big_What-If.jpg
I've never been a huge Mr. Big fan, always more of a casual admirer because of the talent within the band - I've loved some of their songs, but most of the albums on the whole are underwhelming. This comeback album still isn't a perfect 10, but I genuinely feel it may be the best complete record they've ever made, as the grand majority of the tracks are very enjoyable. I'd say there's still a few fillers, but the bottom line is that "Undertow" and "I Won't Get in My Way" are two of my most-played songs of 2011, hands-down.
Featured Track: "I Won't Get in My Way" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWgMsg_2bT4)
Scrolling quickly + that album cover = me thinking there's a band calling Mr. Pig.

That's my only contribution to this thread :lol:

Maiden33
12-08-2011, 09:23 AM
#24:
Saxon - Call to Arms
http://www.metalkingdom.net/album/cover/d20/41797_saxon_call_to_arms.jpg
After 32 years, Saxon are soldiering on about as strong and consistently as ever. They've done better, but it's still everything that makes a solid Saxon album. The band went for a slightly more "retro" feel, returning to their late 70s/early 80s British metal roots, as opposed to the more European, modern approach of some of their more recent stuff. There's a dud track or two (I'm looking at you, "Chasing the Bullet"), but overall it's another damn solid Saxon album, proving why they are one of metal's most enduring and unsung bands.
Featured Track:
"Mists of Avalon" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GAnprIS0uXQ)

Maiden33
12-09-2011, 08:48 AM
#23:
Charred Walls of the Damned - Cold Winds on Timeless Days
http://metalholic.co/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Charred-Walls-of-the-Damned-Cold-Winds-on-Timeless-Days-300x300.jpg
CWotD's debut album showed some promise, but ultimately didn't exactly blow my mind. I felt like if they corrected a few things about it, they would have a great project - and I have to say that most of those things have been fixed. The songs here seem a bit more well-composed and memorable than the majority of what's on their self-titled debut. The style is still basically tech-death with Tim Owens singing instead of having harsh vocals. Outstanding playing, and some really strong and surprisingly melodic songs. My biggest complaint is that the album just feels too long - it should have been 10 tracks instead of 12.
Featured Track: "Zero Span" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EA6v243vpbA)

IrritatedTrout
12-09-2011, 09:00 AM
Cool artwork.

Indestructible
12-09-2011, 10:43 AM
I have heard other projects Tim Owens has done and they are not that good IMO. His vocals are still good but I feel he did his best vocal performances with Judas Priest and Iced Earth, Framming Armaggedon(Iced Earth) being the best. Doubt he will top that again.

Maiden33
12-09-2011, 12:04 PM
I really didn't care for his solo album outside of 1 or 2 songs, didn't care for Beyond Fear at all, and think the 2nd album he did with Yngwie blows. But the first one is solid, and Charred Walls of the Damned is definitely good stuff, worth checking out.

Indestructible
12-09-2011, 12:06 PM
I like Scream Machine from Beyond fear, that's what I want to hear from Tim Ownes, but the rest of the album wasn't like that song.

jhdeity
12-09-2011, 02:00 PM
#24:
Saxon - Call to Arms
http://www.metalkingdom.net/album/cover/d20/41797_saxon_call_to_arms.jpg
After 32 years, Saxon are soldiering on about as strong and consistently as ever. They've done better, but it's still everything that makes a solid Saxon album. The band went for a slightly more "retro" feel, returning to their late 70s/early 80s British metal roots, as opposed to the more European, modern approach of some of their more recent stuff. There's a dud track or two (I'm looking at you, "Chasing the Bullet"), but overall it's another damn solid Saxon album, proving why they are one of metal's most enduring and unsung bands.
Featured Track:
"Mists of Avalon" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GAnprIS0uXQ)

Cool song and even better solo. Gotta check this out STAT

Maiden33
12-09-2011, 04:13 PM
Cool song and even better solo. Gotta check this out STAT

Coincidentally I saw Saxon play down in Baltimore, MD (near you) this past October. It was an outstanding show (as always from them) and they played that song.

jhdeity
12-09-2011, 05:28 PM
Coincidentally I saw Saxon play down in Baltimore, MD (near you) this past October. It was an outstanding show (as always from them) and they played that song.

Yeah I missed that show due to that night being a big party night of some sort. Halloween maybe? I remember being out and thinking how much more fun i'd be having seeing Saxon for the 1st time in 15 or so years.

ravenheart
12-09-2011, 05:40 PM
#23:
Charred Walls of the Damned - Cold Winds on Timeless Days
http://metalholic.co/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Charred-Walls-of-the-Damned-Cold-Winds-on-Timeless-Days-300x300.jpg
CWotD's debut album showed some promise, but ultimately didn't exactly blow my mind. I felt like if they corrected a few things about it, they would have a great project - and I have to say that most of those things have been fixed. The songs here seem a bit more well-composed and memorable than the majority of what's on their self-titled debut. The style is still basically tech-death with Tim Owens singing instead of having harsh vocals. Outstanding playing, and some really strong and surprisingly melodic songs. My biggest complaint is that the album just feels too long - it should have been 10 tracks instead of 12.
Featured Track: "Zero Span" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EA6v243vpbA)

The first couple of tracks I heard from this, I really thought they'd solved most of the problems the first album had. Then I listened to the rest of it, and realised they hadn't. It still sounds like Tim's recorded vocals for different songs to the ones the band is playing.

Dextrimental
12-09-2011, 05:42 PM
It still sounds like Tim's recorded vocals for different songs to the ones the band is playing.

I was trying to work out what irked me about that record, and that's exactly it.

Maiden33
12-09-2011, 06:42 PM
Yeah I missed that show due to that night being a big party night of some sort. Halloween maybe? I remember being out and thinking how much more fun i'd be having seeing Saxon for the 1st time in 15 or so years.

It was only Oct. 15th so it probably wasn't Halloween related. It was an awesome night. Final night of the tour, my friends and I basically got to hang out with the band after the show, I did a shot with Paul Quinn. Quite awesome.

Maiden33
12-10-2011, 08:41 AM
#22:
Arch/Matheos - Sympathetic Resonance
http://www.hellbound.ca/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Arch_Matheos_SympatheticResonance_th.jpg
Those who love the voice of John Arch from his tenure with Fates Warning back in the early/mid 80's were given a teaser of a return back in 2003 with his EP "A Twist of Fate". Arch is back now with a full album, featuring the entire current lineup of Fates Warning (minus Ray Alder, of course) behind him. As a result, the musicianship is absolutely top-notch, not question about it. The production also shines, and the songs (only 6, but 3 are over 10 minutes) are very strong as well. The only thing that stops me from loving this so much more is that I just am not a huge fan of John Arch's voice. I never have been, and that probably won't ever change. If Alder had sung on this as a Fates Warning record, it would probably be in the top 10 or 15. Nevertheless, it's still a great record.
Featured track: "Midnight Serenade" (Official Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwcL04CYews)

maidenpriest
12-10-2011, 11:21 AM
#22:
Arch/Matheos - Sympathetic Resonance
http://www.hellbound.ca/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Arch_Matheos_SympatheticResonance_th.jpg
Those who love the voice of John Arch from his tenure with Fates Warning back in the early/mid 80's were given a teaser of a return back in 2003 with his EP "A Twist of Fate". Arch is back now with a full album, featuring the entire current lineup of Fates Warning (minus Ray Alder, of course) behind him. As a result, the musicianship is absolutely top-notch, not question about it. The production also shines, and the songs (only 6, but 3 are over 10 minutes) are very strong as well. The only thing that stops me from loving this so much more is that I just am not a huge fan of John Arch's voice. I never have been, and that probably won't ever change. If Alder had sung on this as a Fates Warning record, it would probably be in the top 10 or 15. Nevertheless, it's still a great record.
Featured track: "Midnight Serenade" (Official Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwcL04CYews)

Love this album. Neurotically Wired and Stained Glass Sky are definitely major highlights for me. I agree that if Alder would've sang this album it would've been much better but I like Arch as well so this was a good album.

jhdeity
12-10-2011, 04:35 PM
It was only Oct. 15th so it probably wasn't Halloween related. It was an awesome night. Final night of the tour, my friends and I basically got to hang out with the band after the show, I did a shot with Paul Quinn. Quite awesome.

Ah, it was my buddy's bachelor party. I was 15 min away at Scores and after an hour I was wishing I was at the show. I did set up the coolest 4-girl mosh pit lap dance ever that night. After that I got bored though.

Listened to teh whole cd. I gotta give Saxon credit. After writing them off asfter that Apple cover album Innocence? (name escapes me) they have really put out some incredible music.

MPF
12-10-2011, 04:40 PM
I'm glad to see Arch/Matheos ranked so high!

Maiden33
12-10-2011, 04:52 PM
Ah, it was my buddy's bachelor party. I was 15 min away at Scores and after an hour I was wishing I was at the show. I did set up the coolest 4-girl mosh pit lap dance ever that night. After that I got bored though.

Listened to teh whole cd. I gotta give Saxon credit. After writing them off asfter that Apple cover album Innocence? (name escapes me) they have really put out some incredible music.

Yeah, their first 5 records are classic metal at its finest but starting with Crusader in '84 they went downhill. Starting in '97 though (Unleash the Beast album) they really came into their second prime. Every record since has been at least solid with a few great tracks - honestly 2004's Lionheart is my favorite Saxon disc, period.

jhdeity
12-10-2011, 07:29 PM
Yeah, their first 5 records are classic metal at its finest but starting with Crusader in '84 they went downhill. Starting in '97 though (Unleash the Beast album) they really came into their second prime. Every record since has been at least solid with a few great tracks - honestly 2004's Lionheart is my favorite Saxon disc, period.

Yeah Crusader was the last one I kinda liked. It took a while to grow on me and I only liked a few songs. Power & the Glory on the other hand I liked start to finish.

Thanks for reminding me about Lionheart. I went and picked it up but never had a chance to listen to it.

SomewhereInTime72
12-10-2011, 08:04 PM
Huh, I didn't even know about this one. Definitely seems like I gotta check it out though.

Maiden33
12-11-2011, 08:28 AM
#21:
Presto Ballet - Invisible Places
http://www.progarchives.com/progressive_rock_discography_covers/1968/cover_402141912011_r.jpg
I admit that even though this is this band's 3rd or 4th album, I actually hadn't really heard them before. However I knew the band consisted of founding Metal Church guitarist Kurt Vanderhoof and last vocalist Ronnie Munroe - who I had never really cared for in Metal Church, which is probably why I hesitated at first. Big mistake. This band does an outstanding job with the whole 70's prog rock sound, really reminiscent of Kansas and Yes at times. If it weren't for the production, you could fool me into thinking this came out in 1976. I usually don't care too much for the whole neo-prog thing, but this band really does it for me, and every song on this disc is very enjoyable.
Featured Track: "Between the Lines" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CwqUW04fUFQ)

Maiden33
12-12-2011, 08:41 AM
#20:
Anthrax - Worship Music
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61fyxTx3arL._SL500_AA300_.jpg
Hopefully this will get some conversation going on in this thread. As much as I really love this album, I want to get one thing out of the way - I don't really consider this a "comeback" album. I'm in the extreme minority who actually really enjoyed We've Come for You All and John Bush in Anthrax for the most part. Thus I'm not in the group of people who act like the band haven't put out a good album in 20 years. The only way I consider this a comeback album is in the sense that it's been 8 years since the last record. I also genuinely believe that this album would've worked just as well with John Bush on vocals, especially songs like "The Devil You Know". All in all it's just a pretty fantastic record with only one or two small low points. Even though I do like Bush-Anthrax, it's my favorite thing they've done since Sound of White Noise, and one of the better records they've done, period. Also, I've been singing the praises of Rob Caggiano for years, I'm happy to see him finally get some respect with this album.
Featured Song; "The Devil you Know" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TT76uz21TNg)

Sanitarium78
12-12-2011, 09:01 AM
Worship Music is close to the top of my list for album of the year. I agree with what you said about though. Joey does a good job with it but the album was certainly written for John Bush to sing on. In fact there's some songs on here like the first three, The Giant, The Constant and Revloution Screams where I think "this song kicks ass but it would be even better if Bush sang on them". That's not a knock against Joey's performance it's just the album wasn't written for his voice.

Still, it's a great album but the next one they do, or should I say if they do another one with Joey, I think it will be more like the old Belladonna albums since he'll be with them from the strat of the whole process. But I still believe that Bush is the singer that Scott and Charlie really want to be fronting Anthrax.

IrritatedTrout
12-12-2011, 09:22 AM
I like the Bush era too but I love this album and I'm glad Joey is the one fronting them now.

ravenheart
12-12-2011, 09:58 AM
#20:
Anthrax - Worship Music
Hopefully this will get some conversation going on in this thread. As much as I really love this album, I want to get one thing out of the way - I don't really consider this a "comeback" album. I'm in the extreme minority who actually really enjoyed We've Come for You All and John Bush in Anthrax for the most part. Thus I'm not in the group of people who act like the band haven't put out a good album in 20 years. The only way I consider this a comeback album is in the sense that it's been 8 years since the last record. I also genuinely believe that this album would've worked just as well with John Bush on vocals, especially songs like "The Devil You Know". All in all it's just a pretty fantastic record with only one or two small low points. Even though I do like Bush-Anthrax, it's my favorite thing they've done since Sound of White Noise, and one of the better records they've done, period. Also, I've been singing the praises of Rob Caggiano for years, I'm happy to see him finally get some respect with this album.
Featured Song; "The Devil you Know" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TT76uz21TNg)

I liked all the albums in between too. But this is still better than all of them. Right now it's my favourite Anthrax record and I think it's going to make my top 5 for the year.

Maiden33
12-12-2011, 07:12 PM
I liked all the albums in between too. But this is still better than all of them. Right now it's my favourite Anthrax record and I think it's going to make my top 5 for the year.

I don't think that's a crazy thought at all. Honestly I'd say it's my 3rd or 4th favorite Anthrax record, easily.

Dextrimental
12-12-2011, 07:18 PM
I don't think that's a crazy thought at all. Honestly I'd say it's my 3rd or 4th favorite Anthrax record, easily.

Totally agree. Also, probably the highest rated release from any of the big 4 for the last 5 years for me.

Maiden33
12-13-2011, 07:41 AM
#19:
Dream Theater - A Dramatic Turn of Events
http://www.progarchives.com/progressive_rock_discography_covers/378/cover_5124132962011_r.jpg
This was probably one of the most anticipated albums of 2011 in the large Prog metal circle. In 2010 Dream Theater parted ways with co-founder and seemingly eternal drummer Mike Portnoy, which raised some serious questions about their future. Not only was Portnoy unarguably one of the best drummer's in the world, but people were very curious how much of the writing was his. People like myself had an optimistic outlook, as I had long-thought that Portnoy was the source of most of the influence in the band I did not care for - and I have to say this album makes me feel very vindicated. Outside of the surprisingly bad "Build Me Up, Break Me Down", this is a great record, filled with all the hallmarks that make Dream Theater a great band. Sometimes the songs are a little less outstanding than they should be, but ultimately this album restored my faith in the band to shed some of their negative influence and attempt to get back to just writing great Progressive Metal in the style of their old stuff. I'm pretty comfortable saying this is my favorite post-Scenes From a Memory Dream Theater album, and if not, it definitely wins my vote for the most consistent.
Featured Track: "Bridges in the Sky" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Av2OaPEnsnI)

BloodoftheKings
12-13-2011, 08:20 AM
I like Sound of White Noise more then Worship Music and WCFYA isn't far behind.

Sanitarium78
12-13-2011, 03:48 PM
The new Anthrax is my fourth favorite album from them. POT, STD and ATL will always be the top three though. Worship Music just edges out SOWN and WCFYA and I like both of those a lot to.

Dream Theater's new one is in my top five of the year. In fact i'm wondering how it got ranked so low on your list and i'm interested in seeing the other albums you got over it. The album is easily their best work since Six Degrees.

SomewhereInTime72
12-13-2011, 07:44 PM
New Anthrax is my favorite from them since SOWN. Quite frankly it kicks a heinous amount of ass. I had low expectations because it'd been 8 years and they changed singers like crazy but, I was so happy to be utterly wrong. :horns:

Maiden33
12-13-2011, 07:50 PM
The new Anthrax is my fourth favorite album from them. POT, STD and ATL will always be the top three though. Worship Music just edges out SOWN and WCFYA and I like both of those a lot to.

Dream Theater's new one is in my top five of the year. In fact i'm wondering how it got ranked so low on your list and i'm interested in seeing the other albums you got over it. The album is easily their best work since Six Degrees.

19th out of about 90 albums is definitely not low. Everything in the top 20-25 I consider a great record, some are just greater than others. I strongly believe it's the best (if not best, definitely most consistent) record in over a decade, but this was a tough year. I absolutely love every album in my top 12-15.

Maiden33
12-14-2011, 08:18 AM
#18: Journey - Eclipse
http://rockdelight.files.wordpress.com/2011/05/journey_eclipse-cover-300x300.jpg
I'm sure someone will take issue with this - every time I voice my defense and support for the current lineup of the band, I get shit from someone for it. Maybe it's because I'm young and I didn't experience the band with Steve Perry first-hand, but I don't care. I think Arnel Pineda is the perfect frontman for the band, and regardless of all the other politics or whatever, I think this band is outstanding, and despite of their huge success, they remain underrated for their true musical brilliance. Outstanding songs, outstanding playing. Neal Schon is easily one of my favorite guitarists, bar none - and he truly shines throughout this album.

Featured Track: "Resonate" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F6umCccJOZY)

ravenheart
12-14-2011, 08:21 AM
#18: Journey - Eclipse

I'm just surprised it's not higher.

Maiden33
12-14-2011, 08:26 AM
I'm just surprised it's not higher.

Is that your way of saying you actually think it's good, or that you're surprised I might not be as big of a fanboy as you thought? :tongue:

ravenheart
12-14-2011, 09:41 AM
Is that your way of saying you actually think it's good, or that you're surprised I might not be as big of a fanboy as you thought? :tongue:

The latter ;)

Maiden33
12-15-2011, 08:21 AM
#17:
Flaming Row - Elinoire
http://static.rateyourmusic.com/album_images/051dadb03a6522e4b1f91cba4ca49960/3563568.jpg
I checked this out on a whim, all my Prog-snob friends had been really jerking off over this, and I never expected to buy into the hype... but honestly I have to say it's pretty fantastic. For a first project by some random guy from Germany, he's sure roped in a huge list of guests and been able to make an incredibly potent Progressive Rock/Metal concept record, sure to appeal to any Ayreon fan. Just as with Ayreon, something about it doesn't perfectly click with me at all times, but there are some truly outstanding things about this record. Covering a very broad musical scope, from vocal-harmony laden mellow acoustic stuff to thrashier riffs with harsh vocals, it's a musical rollercoaster of emotions. The album is a bit long, filling an entire disc, so it's a chore to sit through in one listen, but it can be very, very rewarding when you do.
Featured Track: "Unearth the Truth" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gzpqZq8V6EY)

Maiden33
12-16-2011, 07:36 AM
#16:
Lost in Thought - Opus Arise
http://t3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRR1MU_Y2mwOI-osilf7ymGAxaKNETsjbTLmq0nCjWRi6HkB2waLNU6U0Pr
Lost in Thought are a new Progressive Metal band from the UK, with Opus Arise being their debut album. Upon first checking this out, the first two songs didn't exactly grab me, so I actually turned it off and listened to something else instead. Eventually, about a week later, I saw their song "Blood Red Diamond" was on the BraveWords website player, so I said screw it and played it, and I was blown away. The song has since become one of my favorite songs from the year, and inspired me to go back and give the album a fair shot. The first two tracks are still, oddly, not highlights, but they've grown on me a lot and this is a damn impressive and consistent debut album. I hope these guys stick around. Stylistically I would say it reminds me of a cross between Vanden Plas and Myrath.
Featured Track: "Blood Red Diamond" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfCGJXzFofM)

SerpentineVIVIVI
12-16-2011, 06:52 PM
I hadn't heard new Journey, I quite like it. Good featured track, the rest of the album is pretty good too.

I totally agree about the Lost In Thought album, it's a killer record (although how the first track didn't stick out to you immediately is beyond me, it's easily my favorite one).

Maiden33
12-17-2011, 07:58 AM
#15: Theocracy - As the World Bleeds
http://www.mauce.nl/site/wp-content/plugins/image-shadow/cache/c36c574d3e2f2437447106f5599d3ff6.jpg
Theocracy started as a one-man project by vocalist Matt Smith nearly a decade ago, unleashing a completely singularly recorded self-titled debut in 2003. In 2008, with a proper band backing him, Smith and Co. unleashed "Mirror of Souls", which was a highlight of that year for me. But now in 2011, I feel the band is finally coming into their own as a completely legit band. For those who don't know (or can't tell by the name), Theocracy are a Christian Metal band, which means in order for my Agnostic self to even listen to them, I have to think they're music is great. This really isn't much different of an album that Mirror of Souls was, just better. The absence of one overly long epic keeps the pace flowing nicely from song to song. All in all just a great listen. The lyrics get a tad preachy, but for the most part nothing I can't stomach.

Featured Track: "30 Pieces of Silver" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MVs2ulome_Y)

Maiden33
12-17-2011, 08:16 PM
I know that most of you guys haven't heard most of these albums - but has anyone actually been checking out the songs I've been posting? Any thoughts? Because, yeah, sadly, there aren't a whole lot of popular albums on this list, I'd hate to be posting 10 of the remaining 14 to crickets, haha.

mankvill
12-17-2011, 08:31 PM
I've been watching. I just can't really comment on anything yet. :eyes:

SomewhereInTime72
12-17-2011, 08:34 PM
I've been watching. I just can't really comment on anything yet. :eyes:

Same here. A couple of the songs have made me think "oh I wanna hear the rest of this", but I feel that I don't really have much to say until I actually do listen to it heh.

Maiden33
12-17-2011, 08:35 PM
There's probably like 3 albums in the remaining 14 that are actually well-received and widely listened-to on this board, so I'm sure those will warrant some discussion. But given how many people claimed they were excited for this, and how many said they were looking forward to checking out stuff, I am a little disappointed at the lack of replies.

maidenpriest
12-18-2011, 02:31 AM
I work at Target and therefore christmas season has taken over my life hence why i haven't been. I was kinda surprised that DT wasn't higher, but I do agree that its their best since Scenes from a Memory. I figured you would post Breaking All Illusions as your highlight track though. The albums afterward (esp Theocracy) have been really good, I downloaded them and shall listen to them!

Maiden33
12-18-2011, 09:38 AM
#14: Eumeria - Rebel Mind
http://www.themetalpit.ca/Eumeria.jpg
I'd been hearing about this band for a year or two, and how they supposedly had a debut album on the way and that it was going to be awesome - but I usually don't buy into any hype until I have actual music to listen to. The truth is that this is one outstanding and impressive Progressive Metal band, filled with incredible undiscovered players. Everyone in this band impressed me, but what I think impressed me most is that guitarist Reece Fullwood is more or less my age (21), and puts most guitarists 10 years his senior to shame. Also, vocalist Jonny Tatum is probably one of the best new vocalists I've heard in a while. I'm pretty picky about singers, and I rarely find ones I've never heard before that really impress me. This guy almost sounds like a 90's James Labrie, but with 2x as much balls. The music these guys play is a very ballsy sort of Prog Metal as well, full of 7-string guitar and crunchy riffs. I really hope this band sticks around and continues to release music this good in the future.

Featured track: "Legion" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jqpeXikUfpg)

Maiden33
12-18-2011, 05:54 PM
It's pretty sad that after 8 hours without a post, this is in danger of being bumped off the first page of this subforum. I seriously miss this board 2-3 years ago when only people who had been here for 2+ years decided to do these threads, and there were maybe 10-12 of them. Also, I really hate all the people on here doing them without posting any kind of an intelligent review of the album. If all you're going to do is post an illustrated list, couldn't you just save that for the voting thread in a few weeks?

Dextrimental
12-18-2011, 05:58 PM
I love the idea of everyone doing a list, I've actually discovered at least one record from each list that I missed during the year, including yours. More lists is better than less, because some people here are somewhat predictable in their lists, everyone doing one means there's a lot more unpredictability in the final picks and what not.

Maiden33
12-18-2011, 06:00 PM
I love the idea of everyone doing a list, I've actually discovered at least one record from each list that I missed during the year, including yours. More lists is better than less, because some people here are somewhat predictable in their lists, everyone doing one means there's a lot more unpredictability in the final picks and what not.

I'm much more bothered by what I mentioned about the lack of information in people's threads. I understand that everyone wants to post a list, and that having a thread for your list does help it get noticed better than one single thread with lists posted - but I don't like that people have been posting nothing more than the album cover and maybe a link to the song.

ravenheart
12-18-2011, 06:46 PM
It's pretty sad that after 8 hours without a post, this is in danger of being bumped off the first page of this subforum. I seriously miss this board 2-3 years ago when only people who had been here for 2+ years decided to do these threads, and there were maybe 10-12 of them. Also, I really hate all the people on here doing them without posting any kind of an intelligent review of the album. If all you're going to do is post an illustrated list, couldn't you just save that for the voting thread in a few weeks?

Aw, are people taking attention away from you? :violin: ;)

Dextrimental
12-18-2011, 06:47 PM
I'm much more bothered by what I mentioned about the lack of information in people's threads. I understand that everyone wants to post a list, and that having a thread for your list does help it get noticed better than one single thread with lists posted - but I don't like that people have been posting nothing more than the album cover and maybe a link to the song.

True enough point, without reviews, it doesn't give anyone justification to check it out.

Maiden33
12-18-2011, 06:48 PM
Aw, are people taking attention away from you? :violin: ;)

Sorry, we can't all have our websites. :tongue:

ravenheart
12-18-2011, 06:49 PM
True enough point, without reviews, it doesn't give anyone justification to check it out.

You mean there's not enough there to overcome everyone's intrinsic laziness?

Dextrimental
12-18-2011, 07:11 PM
You mean there's not enough there to overcome everyone's intrinsic laziness?

Well, a review actually justifies the user having their own thread at least, and, not for me personally, but I'm sure others will judge the album by the review, then check out the song if it peaks their interest. Hypothetical example: Someone doesn't like Hammerfall, Jeff says a band sound exactly Hammerfall, the person doesn't bother checking them out because they already know the style of music won't be for them, and thusly doesn't waste 5 minutes and waits for the next entry and review. While that approach isn't for a lot of people, some people do judge by reviews, its why they're published in the first place.

SomewhereInTime72
12-18-2011, 09:15 PM
Yeah, without reviews or blurbs or whatnot, you could really just be making a single post with the list of albums in the 2011 thread. I don't like listening to music just on the basis that some guy on the internet liked it enough to put on a list.

Though it is possible I'd actually make an exception to that for someone I particularly trust the tastes of - which doesn't really happen here anyway because there's no one here I agree with at more than a 75% basis at best :tongue:.

DethMaiden
12-18-2011, 09:17 PM
Yeah, without reviews or blurbs or whatnot, you could really just be making a single post with the list of albums in the 2011 thread. I don't like listening to music just on the basis that some guy on the internet liked it enough to put on a list.

Though it is possible I'd actually make an exception to that for someone I particularly trust the tastes of - which doesn't really happen here anyway because there's no one here I agree with at more than a 75% basis at best :tongue:.

You shouldn't seek someone you know you already agree with but someone who can help you expand your horizons. ;)

SomewhereInTime72
12-18-2011, 09:23 PM
You shouldn't seek someone you know you already agree with but someone who can help you expand your horizons. ;)

I find my horizons are expanded more easily by people I typically agree with on the interests we shared previously. ;)

Maiden33
12-19-2011, 09:44 AM
#13: Malison Rogue - Malison Rogue
http://united-metal.ru/uploads/posts/2011-11/thumbs/1320387594_1314711460_front.jpg
If you took Queensryche, Fates Warning, and Iron Maiden circa the mid 80's and put them into a blender and then aged the result 20 years, you would end up with Malison Rogue - a new Traditional Metal band from Sweden, whose debut album is nothing short of awesome. Opening track "Friend or Foe" had me at first listen, but the remaining 7 tracks offer up many great melodic chorus, great guitar leads, and carefully crafted traditional metal riffs and song structures with some pleasant progressive touches. Their vocalist has a pretty strong voice, reminiscent of a singer in particular which escapes my mind for some reason. The album actually feels a little short, clocking in at just about 40 minutes, but I suppose I'll take it as a good thing, as there's absolutely no filler to be found here. This was definitely a year for great debut albums, and this is no exception.

Featured Track: "Friend or Foe" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9Ayv0HVG8E)

PowerMaiden
12-19-2011, 10:11 AM
...and Iron Maiden circa the mid 80's ...]

I don't know where you came up with that one buddy but that's just wrong... they sound gay if you ask me, just terrible association


Cheers !
PowerMaiden

Maiden33
12-19-2011, 10:13 AM
I don't know where you came up with that one buddy but that's just wrong... they sound gay if you ask me, just terrible association


Cheers !
PowerMaiden

With all due respect, just shut up. Seriously.

Crionics
12-19-2011, 10:14 AM
#13: Malison Rogue - Malison Rogue
http://united-metal.ru/uploads/posts/2011-11/thumbs/1320387594_1314711460_front.jpg
If you took Queensryche, Fates Warning, and Iron Maiden circa the mid 80's and put them into a blender and then aged the result 20 years, you would end up with Malison Rogue - a new Traditional Metal band from Sweden, whose debut album is nothing short of awesome. Opening track "Friend or Foe" had me at first listen, but the remaining 7 tracks offer up many great melodic chorus, great guitar leads, and carefully crafted traditional metal riffs and song structures with some pleasant progressive touches. Their vocalist has a pretty strong voice, reminiscent of a singer in particular which escapes my mind for some reason. The album actually feels a little short, clocking in at just about 40 minutes, but I suppose I'll take it as a good thing, as there's absolutely no filler to be found here. This was definitely a year for great debut albums, and this is no exception.

Featured Track: "Friend or Foe" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9Ayv0HVG8E)

One of my favorites of the year as well :fist:

illuminatus917
12-19-2011, 10:15 AM
I don't know where you came up with that one buddy but that's just wrong... they sound gay if you ask me, just terrible association


Cheers !
PowerMaiden

There's some Bruce Dickinson in the vocals. There's some Queensryche in the sound.

PowerMaiden
12-19-2011, 10:16 AM
With all due respect, just shut up. Seriously.

I don't get it, you asked for some comments ?


anyway


Cheers !
PowerMaiden

PowerMaiden
12-19-2011, 10:17 AM
There's some Bruce Dickinson in the vocals.

:lol:

yeah right


Cheers !
PowerMaiden

DethMaiden
12-19-2011, 10:21 AM
Seriously, dude. The whole All Things But Maiden Suck So Kneeleth Before Them act is pretty fucking old at this point. Malison Rogue DOES sound like Maiden and Queensryche, you don't like them because they aren't in your canon of 10 bands you listen to.

illuminatus917
12-19-2011, 10:21 AM
:lol:

yeah right


Cheers !
PowerMaiden

Did you listen to the same song I listened to?

Maiden33
12-19-2011, 10:22 AM
You'll have to excuse PowerMaiden, he's so incredibly close-minded and puts Maiden on such a ridiculous pedestal that he's incapable of recognizing that anything he doesn't like MIGHT have drawn influence from Maiden.

And yes, I asked for comments - from people who have something interesting to say. The ONLY thing you ever post about anything I post (unless it's actually about Maiden) is bitching that what I like sucks and that you don't understand how 1) Anyone listens to it, and 2) How it's influenced by Maiden.

Sanitarium78
12-19-2011, 10:24 AM
I don't know where you came up with that one buddy but that's just wrong... they sound gay if you ask me, just terrible association


Cheers !
PowerMaiden

He didn't say it was exactly like Maiden. It's got elements in there but I think it sounds more like Queensryche. Also, that's only one song so the rest of the album maybe does have some Maiden like qualities to it. Of course nobody will ever match Maiden but at least because of them we're getting newer bands like this who are writing traditional sounding metal. Which we need more of today if you ask me.

I liked the song and i'm gonna check some more stuff out from the band. Sorry, for not posting more often here but I have been reading it. My computer's been having some problems lately so i'm not always able to listen to the song links you've posted.

PowerMaiden
12-19-2011, 10:40 AM
You'll have to excuse PowerMaiden, he's so incredibly close-minded and puts Maiden on such a ridiculous pedestal that he's incapable of recognizing that anything he doesn't like MIGHT have drawn influence from Maiden.

And yes, I asked for comments - from people who have something interesting to say. The ONLY thing you ever post about anything I post (unless it's actually about Maiden) is bitching that what I like sucks and that you don't understand how 1) Anyone listens to it, and 2) How it's influenced by Maiden.

I don't agree on the closed minded thing. I listen to a lot of diverse stuff even other than metal. But if that's your perception of my musical taste that's fine with me there is nothing I can do about it. You probably get that because I tend to post more on Maiden related stuff.

Also concerning that band, of course one of their main infuence is Maiden, all of the so-called classic or traditionnal metal bands of today are influence by them. But imho your comparision failed in my hears when I listened to that song. Apart from maybe a few harmonies (that all of those type of classic metal bands do) They're is really anything that is worth mentionning that they achived with succes as far as being related to Maiden in that song.


I'm sorry you find my opinions are not interesting. With that in mind I won't be posting in your threads anymore (all of which I read btw) . and yes sadly I don't comprehend a lot of stuff you seem to enjoy for some reason but it's not against you. It's just the music.

For your last point I will say it again, I agree they were infuenced by Maiden, that was not my point , my point was that they failed at it. That's what I said, It sounds gay to me.


Cheers man !
PowerMaiden

ravenheart
12-19-2011, 11:48 AM
traditionnal

mentionning

Words ending in "ion" don't have a second 'n' when you add an extra ending to them... just sayin' ;)

He's right about one thing though. Malison Rogue suck :finger:

IrritatedTrout
12-19-2011, 12:25 PM
Sounds like Queensryche and the singer kinda reminds me of Tobias Sammet. I won't comment on the quality, but I also don't think it sounds like Maiden. Although the way you worded the description I'm not sure if you even meant that they sounded like Maiden, or that they were just obviously an influence.

Maiden33
12-20-2011, 09:11 AM
#12: Epysode - Obsessions
http://www.progarchives.com/progressive_rock_discography_covers/6826/cover_342131102011_r.jpg
Epysode are a project founded by guitarist Samuel Arkan of relatively unknown band Virus IV, and Obsessions is an insanely good concept album featuring a suspenseful, interesting story, some outstanding Progressive Metal songs, and a fantastic cast of singers. The most prominent vocalist is Kelly "Sundown" Carpenter (Beyond Twilight, Outworld), who gives an absolutely stellar performance throughout the album. Also featured are Magali Luyten (Beautiful Sin, Ayreon), Oddleif Stensland (Communic), Rick Altzi (Thunderstone, At Vance), and Lisolette Hegt (Dial, Ayreon). There's a slew of guest musicians which form a pretty impressive band. This is an album that truly grows on me with each listen, but what I think impresses me most is how all 5 singers blend together to create one very interesting combination. Each song is not simply sung by one singer, or even two singers in most cases, but the vocalists actually share the spotlight, interweaving with eachother, something most other concept albums with multiple singers sadly don't accomplish. Bottom line is that if you love Progressive Metal, this is a must-hear album.

Featured Track: "Obsessions" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JI_LNT8spik)

ravenheart
12-20-2011, 04:05 PM
#12: Epysode - Obsessions

Correct.

ravenheart
12-20-2011, 04:08 PM
You'll have to excuse PowerMaiden, he's so incredibly close-minded and puts Maiden on such a ridiculous pedestal that he's incapable of recognizing that anything he doesn't like MIGHT have drawn influence from Maiden.

And yes, I asked for comments - from people who have something interesting to say. The ONLY thing you ever post about anything I post (unless it's actually about Maiden) is bitching that what I like sucks and that you don't understand how 1) Anyone listens to it, and 2) How it's influenced by Maiden.

Woah, woah, woah. Back the tinted vision truck up. Did Maiden33 just accuse someone else of having a shallow range of taste?!

Maiden33
12-20-2011, 06:41 PM
Woah, woah, woah. Back the tinted vision truck up. Did Maiden33 just accuse someone else of having a shallow range of taste?!

There's a pretty god damn huge difference between:

1) Only actively listening to 4 or 5 metal subgenres, and happening to like bands within them that you consider generic/derivative.

and

2) Listening to a total of about a dozen bands, and placing one in particular on such a ridiculous fanboy pedestal like he does with Maiden.

I know you (and others here) have such an issue with the fact that I really only build my lists on Progressive, Power, and Traditional metal with hints of AOR and other things, but that's too god damn bad. It does not mean that I am musically closed-minded. I listen to a LOT of different stuff, a good deal of it not metal in the least - but I just choose to build my lists based on what I listen to the most in a given year, which, yes - happens to be this sort of stuff, largely because most of the non-metal stuff I enjoy is older stuff from previous year, or in most cases, decades. I'm NOT a professional music critic, I'm not required to live up to some sort of standard of how much of X vs. how much of Y I listen to.

MPF
12-20-2011, 07:43 PM
There's a pretty god damn huge difference between:

1) Only actively listening to 4 or 5 metal subgenres, and happening to like bands within them that you consider generic/derivative.

and

2) Listening to a total of about a dozen bands, and placing one in particular on such a ridiculous fanboy pedestal like he does with Maiden.

I know you (and others here) have such an issue with the fact that I really only build my lists on Progressive, Power, and Traditional metal with hints of AOR and other things, but that's too god damn bad. It does not mean that I am musically closed-minded. I listen to a LOT of different stuff, a good deal of it not metal in the least - but I just choose to build my lists based on what I listen to the most in a given year, which, yes - happens to be this sort of stuff, largely because most of the non-metal stuff I enjoy is older stuff from previous year, or in most cases, decades. I'm NOT a professional music critic, I'm not required to live up to some sort of standard of how much of X vs. how much of Y I listen to.

:rocker::rocker::rocker:

DethMaiden
12-20-2011, 08:50 PM
There's a pretty god damn huge difference between:

1) Only actively listening to 4 or 5 metal subgenres, and happening to like bands within them that you consider generic/derivative.

and

2) Listening to a total of about a dozen bands, and placing one in particular on such a ridiculous fanboy pedestal like he does with Maiden.

I know you (and others here) have such an issue with the fact that I really only build my lists on Progressive, Power, and Traditional metal with hints of AOR and other things, but that's too god damn bad. It does not mean that I am musically closed-minded. I listen to a LOT of different stuff, a good deal of it not metal in the least - but I just choose to build my lists based on what I listen to the most in a given year, which, yes - happens to be this sort of stuff, largely because most of the non-metal stuff I enjoy is older stuff from previous year, or in most cases, decades. I'm NOT a professional music critic, I'm not required to live up to some sort of standard of how much of X vs. how much of Y I listen to.

I am, it's a hassle. I just want to listen to hipster black metal all day. :( :(

Maiden33
12-20-2011, 09:23 PM
I am, it's a hassle. I just want to listen to hipster black metal all day. :( :(

Hey! I vowed to keep this thread completely clean of that term and the entire debate over it, and up til know I've been keeping that promise! :tongue:

Dextrimental
12-20-2011, 10:39 PM
Well that was an unnecessary dose of mud-slinging in this thread. Epysode are pretty good for a style of prog I don't usually enjoy. May pick up that record at some point.

SomewhereInTime72
12-21-2011, 03:11 AM
Featured Track: "Obsessions" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JI_LNT8spik)

Well hot damn, this song is pretty awesome. Very Ayreon like...:horns: I kind of hate the band name, but that's really a minor issue, heh.

ravenheart
12-21-2011, 08:04 AM
I am, it's a hassle. I just want to listen to hipster black metal all day. :( :(

At least I only make you listen to non-hipster black metal ;)

ravenheart
12-21-2011, 08:04 AM
There's a pretty god damn huge difference between:

1) Only actively listening to 4 or 5 metal subgenres, and happening to like bands within them that you consider generic/derivative.

and

2) Listening to a total of about a dozen bands, and placing one in particular on such a ridiculous fanboy pedestal like he does with Maiden.

It's different yes, but really one is only an extrapolation of the other. The irony is still astonishing.

Maiden33
12-21-2011, 08:18 AM
It's different yes, but really one is only an extrapolation of the other. The irony is still astonishing.

Whatever you say. I'm not discussing this any further, so please put the issue to rest. I have no problem with you coming into this thread to comment on the releases, even if it's telling me you completely disagree with me liking it. I do however have an issue with people coming into this thread to remind me of how closed-minded I am because I don't like certain metal subgenres. I've been on this board for six years, people should sure as hell know what to expect from me at this point, so I don't know why I have to go through this almost every year, it's gotten very old by now.

Maiden33
12-21-2011, 08:28 AM
#11: Borealis - Fall From Grace
http://a3.l3-images.myspacecdn.com/images02/139/e73993cb86074e47b124721504eb6d28/l.jpg
Borealis are a Prog/Power outfit hailing from Canada (Toronto, specifically), who self-released their debut album World of Silence in 2008. The record was good, and showed considerable promise, but when I heard the advance track "Where We Started" from this album, I knew they were about to considerably step up their game - and the record did not let me down. At just 9 songs/43 minutes long, Fall From Grace is a very punchy, to-the-point collection of extremely well-played and catchy songs, whose style can best be summed up as a less Gothic, more Power Metal-influenced Evergrey sound, which isn't surprising as several members of Borealis cite Evergrey as a big influence. Vocalist/Guitarist Matt Marinelli has a very strong, charismatic voice that is a bit deeper than most others in this genre, but also has a fairly distinctive tone to it that most others lack. The band managed to get a direct support slot on Saxon's 2011 US tour, during which I was able to meet and hang out with the guys, and can now call them my friends as well as the band responsible for my #11 album. If these guys can continue to grow from this as they did from their debut, their future should be excellent.

Featured Track: "Where We Started" (Official Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I79UW4eCs5g)

Spiner202
12-21-2011, 08:33 AM
Only #11? :D

I'll have quite a bit to say about that album in my thread! Everyone should listen to it (and World of Silence, which I think is far superior).

Maiden33
12-21-2011, 08:35 AM
Only #11? :D

I'll have quite a bit to say about that album in my thread! Everyone should listen to it (and World of Silence, which I think is far superior).

I'm willing to bite that there may be better songs on World of Silence, but I admit I'm a sucker for the super-glossy production of Fall From Grace, and I think Matt's singing has improved as well.

IrritatedTrout
12-21-2011, 09:03 AM
I heard the singer from Borealis uses a straw for his water bottle onstage. :D

street_burial
12-21-2011, 09:14 AM
I heard the singer from Borealis uses a straw for his water bottle onstage. :D

thats metal as fvck

Maiden33
12-21-2011, 10:07 AM
I heard the singer from Borealis uses a straw for his water bottle onstage. :D

https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/308606_10100401088247813_8229703_50183243_10610018 02_n.jpg

You can see a bit of it there, haha. He has one of those microphone stand drink holders and then a big long straw/tube so he can drink from it while they're playing. Apparently people have made fun of them for this, but I think it's genius and frankly, I want one for myself for my own band's shows, haha.

SomewhereInTime72
12-22-2011, 06:40 AM
Haha that is hilarious, yet awesome.

Maiden33
12-22-2011, 01:32 PM
#10: Stratovarius - Elysium
http://www.angrymetalguy.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/stratovarius_elysium.jpg
Stratovarius's career was in the toilet in 2005-2006. Despite a reunion of the classic 1995-2003 lineup, the self-titled album pretty much sucked, and the tour support it was a bit underwhelming. Then 2007-2008 saw the departure of co-founding guitarist Timo Tolkki, and what seemed like eminent death for the group. When your chief songwriter and bandleader departs during the most difficult part of your career, things don't exactly look promising... but the band found guitarist Matias Kupianen, and released Polaris in 2009, which was surprisingly good, but ultimately feel sort of flat for me with repeated listens. It had a few strong tracks and was definitely a pleasant surprise, but something was missing. I feel that Elysium succeeds in all places where Polaris failed. A thoroughly enjoyable set of great and fairly diverse songs showcasing everything Stratovarius are great at doing, including a superb 18-minute epic that is easily my favorite thing the band have recorded since 2000's Infinite album. I thought this was something I would never say, but I truly believe Stratovarius have created an album on par with their classic work, such as the aforementioned Infinite and Visions. If you're a Stratovarius fan or really a fan of power metal at all, this is a must-hear album.

Featured Track: "Elysium" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ikDS1TBAElo) (Yeah, it's an 18-minute song, so only for the patient, but it's so obviously the best song on here in my opinion)

SerpentineVIVIVI
12-22-2011, 03:01 PM
Spot on. This album is great, and Elysium is definitely the best track on the album (although Under Flaming Skies and Move The Mountain also are noteworthy). This album would be on a pretty high spot for me as well.

maidenpriest
12-22-2011, 03:34 PM
Spot on. This album is great, and Elysium is definitely the best track on the album (although Under Flaming Skies and Move The Mountain also are noteworthy). This album would be on a pretty high spot for me as well.

Agreed. I also agree with you saying that its on par with some of their classic work Elysium is an amazing song. Event Horizon is amazing as well. Definitely in my top 10

Spiner202
12-22-2011, 05:37 PM
This album made me a Stratovarius fan. I had only heard Elements Part I before, but I took a chance on this because of the awesome artwork and it turned out to be a great album. The only song that I think is somewhat weak is "Lifetime in a Moment", but even that has a few catchy moments. I'd love to see Stratovarius play this whole album live!

SerpentineVIVIVI
12-22-2011, 05:56 PM
What I find is most albums with really good artwork tend to be just as good musically. It's a strange theory I've came up with, and obviously it's subjective, but it has worked for the most part. I don't even look at albums with poor album covers, and the few times I do, I am proven right.

xStructualDefect
12-23-2011, 01:14 AM
I totally forgot Stratovarius came out with an album this year. I like Polaris but I kinda thought it had some filler. Definitely gonna check out Elysium right now actually haha.

Maiden33
12-23-2011, 09:47 AM
#9: Redemption - This Mortal Coil
http://www.heberger-image.fr/data/images/26066_pochette_redemption.jpeg
Even though #9 is clearly a very high position, when a band previously held three top 3 albums in 2009, 2007, and 2005 with 3 consecutive albums, #9 feels like a step down, and sadly, it is. I've praised Redemption as the best new band of the 2000-2009 decade, who have a fairly unique approach to Progressive Metal. For those who aren't familiar with them, the band takes a relatively darker and more emotional approach to Prog Metal, with very personal and introspective lyrics sung by the very emotional vocals of Fates Warning's Ray Alder. Despite all of the players in the band being outstanding, they usually don't get too much into typical Prog wankery and remain relatively song-based. This Mortal Coil is no exception to any of that, with the lyrics taking on an even more personal tone, as this album was inspired by guitarist/lyricist Nic Van Dyk being diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, and his coming to grips with his own mortality. On paper that should've made this my favorite Redemption album, but sadly two things I think hold it back. One, I think this Ray Alder's weakest vocal performance on a Redemption album. I don't know if it was just a weak performance or if he's truly losing his touch, but his voice is just a bit dry and weak at times. My other complaint is the production and overall sound of this album, which to me is just strange. It's not necessarily bad, just very weird, and I particularly don't care much for the guitar tone. That being said, the songs are pretty much as strong as anything Redemption have done before, hence how they can still manage to land at #9 in such a competitive year. They remain one of my favorite bands around today. Also, this album features a bonus disc on some versions that includes some cool and unexpected covers.

Featured Track: "No Tickets to the Funeral" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FAc4P4Vq_rI)

The_jman
12-23-2011, 03:04 PM
#9: Redemption - This Mortal Coil
http://www.heberger-image.fr/data/images/26066_pochette_redemption.jpeg
Even though #9 is clearly a very high position, when a band previously held three top 3 albums in 2009, 2007, and 2005 with 3 consecutive albums, #9 feels like a step down, and sadly, it is. I've praised Redemption as the best new band of the 2000-2009 decade, who have a fairly unique approach to Progressive Metal. For those who aren't familiar with them, the band takes a relatively darker and more emotional approach to Prog Metal, with very personal and introspective lyrics sung by the very emotional vocals of Fates Warning's Ray Alder. Despite all of the players in the band being outstanding, they usually don't get too much into typical Prog wankery and remain relatively song-based. This Mortal Coil is no exception to any of that, with the lyrics taking on an even more personal tone, as this album was inspired by guitarist/lyricist Nic Van Dyk being diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, and his coming to grips with his own mortality. On paper that should've made this my favorite Redemption album, but sadly two things I think hold it back. One, I think this Ray Alder's weakest vocal performance on a Redemption album. I don't know if it was just a weak performance or if he's truly losing his touch, but his voice is just a bit dry and weak at times. My other complaint is the production and overall sound of this album, which to me is just strange. It's not necessarily bad, just very weird, and I particularly don't care much for the guitar tone. That being said, the songs are pretty much as strong as anything Redemption have done before, hence how they can still manage to land at #9 in such a competitive year. They remain one of my favorite bands around today. Also, this album features a bonus disc on some versions that includes some cool and unexpected covers.

Featured Track: "No Tickets to the Funeral" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FAc4P4Vq_rI)
I really dislike the sound of this, production, guitar tone, and vocal production especially as compared with how much I enjoyed snowfall on judgement day's production and tone and such.

sorry I'm a little late to the party, but I read the whole thread. there were a couple I enjoyed, most aren't for me, but sadly of late my musical tastes seem to be shifting again and I don't even feel like listening to half of my own music collection.

MPF
12-23-2011, 04:05 PM
This Mortal Coil is my favorite Redemption album.

I will admit Snowfall's production is a lot better. But I like the rawer vibe of this, it matches the tone of the album.

And being a fan of everything from Evergrey to Woods Of Desolation, Adler's voice doesn't bother me :)

Maiden33
12-23-2011, 04:21 PM
I should also note that I didn't care THAT much for the production of Snowfall either. To me the best sounding Redmeption album is EASILY The Origins of Ruin.

MPF
12-23-2011, 04:30 PM
I should also note that I didn't care THAT much for the production of Snowfall either. To me the best sounding Redmeption album is EASILY The Origins of Ruin.

I wasn't really implying that, I was just going in running order.

But yeah The Origins of Ruin is my 2nd favorite Redemption album, and Memory is still my favorite Redemption song.

Maiden33
12-24-2011, 10:12 AM
#8: Iced Earth - Dystopia
http://www.metal4all.com/wp-content/plugins/rss-poster/cache/76964_IE-DystopiaLowRes-300x300.jpg
This is my personal vote for comeback album of the year. I used to love Iced Earth when I first got into them in like 2004-2005, but I had all but given up on them as of about a year ago. I thought Framing Armageddon was OK, and The Crucible of Man sucked. Then with all the singer changes and whatnot, things just didn't seem promising. What seemed like the ultimate sign of their demise for me was the addition of Into Eternity vocalist Stu Block. I had to see Into Eternity live six times between 2005 and 2008, and I hated them, partially for Stu's vocals, so I pretty much put Iced Earth in the "done" bin upon the announcement of Stu's arrival.

I could not have been more wrong. The truth of the matter is that Iced Earth have put out their best record in a long time, if not, and I can't believe I'm about to say this - their best record ever. Jon Schaffer truly recaptured the balanced, song-based approach of their classic Something Wicked record, with a great bunch of songs with virtually no filler, a rare feat for an Iced Earth record. The band is great, featuring Troy Seele, possibly my favorite Iced Earth lead guitarist to date, as well as the unbelievable, shockingly great vocals of Stu Block, who manages to come off with a mixture of about 40% Barlow, 30% Ripper, and 30% of his own style and flavor. This album has completely re-energized the group and made me want to see and support them, and pull my Iced Earth shirts out from the back of my closet and wear them again. This is truly the perfect comeback.

Featured Track: "Dystopia" (Official Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zuwW9IVwZ0U)

Maiden33
12-25-2011, 05:33 AM
Wow, I didn't expect this album to get no responses, haha. I guess it's because of Christmas. Either way, #7 will be up within the next hour or two.

Maiden33
12-25-2011, 12:18 PM
#7: Toby Hitchcock - Mercury's Down
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51HrwAR1ZnL._SL500_AA300_.jpg
Toby Hitchcock is an American vocalist who has done a good deal of session work for AOR artists like Pride of Lions, but this album is his first solo endeavor, featuring the songwriting and musicianship of Erik Martenssen (W.E.T.). I do really enjoy some AOR and Melodic Hard Rock, but I approach most albums very hesitantly, as I find it nearly impossible for someone to craft an AOR album which doesn't start to bore me by around track 5 or 6 - which is what I was expecting from this, but I was dead wrong. Through twelve outstanding tracks, this album never loses steam, every song completely stacked with powerful vocals, great guitar playing, and formulaic but catchy and memorable songwriting with top-notch hooks. Many people want to put this sort of music down, but I think songwriting (especially catchy songwriting) is a skill you can not teach someone to develop, so I do really appreciate stuff like this. Sure, it's AOR/Melodic Hard Rock, which means there's always going to be people whining that it's neither metal enough or interesting enough, but I personally don't particularly care. Toby is undoubtedly my favorite new vocalist I discovered in 2011.

Featured Track: "A Different Drum" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ztw4tJcjgYQ)

MPF
12-25-2011, 03:57 PM
Loved Dystopia, haven't checked out Mercury's Down yet.

ravenheart
12-25-2011, 04:44 PM
#7: Toby Hitchcock - Mercury's Down

Even I like this one. Which, for gay-metal, is rare ;)

Maiden33
12-26-2011, 09:02 AM
#6: Subsignal - Touchstones
http://getmetal.org/uploads/posts/2011-10/1317577826_1317577399_subsignal-touchstones-2011.jpg
This is my "wild card" album for this year. I admittedly strongly gravitate towards albums by bands I already know and love - it's very rare that an album can crack my top 5 or even 10 if I didn't know of the band prior and build that fanship in advance, so the fact that an album by a band I had never hear of prior to August managed to rank 6th here is a huge deal for me, especially considering Subsignal are pretty different from what I usually go for. There's a lot of Progressive Rock in this, reminiscent of bands like Yes, and neo-Prog Rock bands like Marillion and Pendragon - but overall it defeinitely takes on a more metal vibe. I've been describing these guys to friends as "Neo-Prog Rock gone Metal". Either way, it's fantastic, and this has been one of my most-played albums of the year, with something new and fascinating revealing itself to me upon every listen. Fantastic vocal melodies and harmonies, really great expressive guitar playing and very interesting rhythm section work can be found throughout the disc. I can't fully explain quite why I like this so much, but I do.

Featured Track: "Con Todas Las Palabras" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXUBWcY4vHo)

Sanitarium78
12-26-2011, 05:48 PM
Dystopia is great. Their last album I thought was OK but it certainly wasn't enough for me to lose any faith in the band. Schaffer has proven time and again, no matter who the singer or the rest of the lineup is, he always comes out with something that will be good to great. I'm not an Into Eternity fan but Stu's vocal performance is amazing on this album. It's given the band a new life and energy that Barlow, while still a very good singer, couldn't deliver at this point.

treghet
12-26-2011, 05:51 PM
I've never really been into Iced Earth but I checked out that song and it's actually pretty good.

Maiden33
12-26-2011, 07:05 PM
Top 5 begins tomorrow! Anyone think they can guess the 5 albums?

MPF
12-26-2011, 07:49 PM
I haven't seen Pagan's Mind yet, nor Iconoclast by Symphony X. And of course Evergrey has yet to be mentioned....

Hmm....

Spiner202
12-26-2011, 08:03 PM
I haven't seen Pagan's Mind yet, nor Iconoclast by Symphony X. And of course Evergrey has yet to be mentioned....

Hmm....

I can't quite remember if Riot has been mentioned, but I could see them also making the list.

Maiden33
12-27-2011, 04:29 AM
#5: Eden's Curse - Trinity
http://www.cdjournal.com/image/jacket/large/411101/4111010401.jpg
The first two Eden's Curse albums were decent, but ultimately just didn't do that much more me. I thought they had some pretty strong potential as Melodic Metal albums, but Michael Eden's voice was a little off-putting for me, and I was just never compelled to revisit the albums... but something about the album was just different for me in a huge way. Dream Theater vocalist James Labrie makes guest appearances throughout the album, most notably on the track "No Holy Man", though he provides very noticeable backing vocals on pretty much every track. Helloween's Andi Deris also contributes to the song "Black Widow", and though I normally can't stand Deris's voice, I enjoy the guest spot. Overall these songs just do it for me in a way I never expected them to. Really strong hooks and catchy, powerful choruses, some great guitar work, and melodic vocals. I know that there's nothing really groundbreaking going on here, but this has easily been one of my most-played albums this year, I just keep coming back to it, and that makes a big difference for me.

Featured Track: "Trinity" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOqLe7gaofs)

ravenheart
12-27-2011, 05:16 AM
#5: Eden's Curse - Trinity

You had to go and spoil it, didn't you?

Maiden33
12-27-2011, 05:19 AM
You had to go and spoil it, didn't you?

Is this implying you've actually been enjoying the list lately? :tongue:

ravenheart
12-27-2011, 05:34 AM
Can't comment on the Subsignal one, but otherwise you were starting to get on a bit of a roll with IE and Toby Hitchcock... then this :tongue:

Maiden33
12-27-2011, 05:36 AM
Can't comment on the Subsignal one, but otherwise you were starting to get on a bit of a roll with IE and Toby Hitchcock... then this :tongue:

Well I know you really disagree about one album in particular yet to come, so it was bound to end eventually, haha.

ravenheart
12-27-2011, 05:56 AM
Well I know you really disagree about one album in particular yet to come, so it was bound to end eventually, haha.

Yeah, but no one cares about Riot ;)

The_jman
12-27-2011, 03:48 PM
the 4 remaining have to be symphony x, evergrey, pagan's mind and Riot, not necessarily in that order.

MPF
12-27-2011, 04:59 PM
the 4 remaining have to be symphony x, evergrey, pagan's mind and Riot, not necessarily in that order.

I'll say from 4 to 1:

Pagan's Mind
Symphony X
Evergrey
Riot

The_jman
12-27-2011, 06:31 PM
I'll say from 4 to 1:

Pagan's Mind
Symphony X
Evergrey
Riot
I would have had from 4-1 pagans mind, riot, evergrey, and symphony x, but you could be right.

SomewhereInTime72
12-28-2011, 10:32 AM
the 4 remaining have to be symphony x, evergrey, pagan's mind and Riot, not necessarily in that order.

Good call. :D ;)

Maiden33
12-28-2011, 10:50 AM
#4: Pagan's Mind - Heavenly Ecstasy
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/517Sbl4XyuL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

I've loved Pagan's Mind for a few years now, and think they're one of the best new bands of the past dozen years. Their albums Celestial Entrance and Enigmatic : Calling were amazing offerings of epic, sci-fi themed celestial Progressive Metal, but despite a few of the band's best songs, the 2007 album Gods' Equation was a big letdown for many fans. That coupled with the long wait for a new album had some, including myself a bit worried. All those doubts were laid to rest upon listening to this. The band have opted for a bit more of a melodic, straight-forward approach than ever before, as heard on tracks like "Walk Away in Silence", but still retain most of what made their previous albums great. This band is just great, with each member pulling their weight to make one outstanding and fairly unique sounding package - but ultimately the standout star for me is again guitarist Jorn Viggo Lofstad, who is one of the most underrated players in the world if you ask me.

Featured Track: "Intermission" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHAoHifynHM)

Maiden33
12-29-2011, 10:32 AM
#3: Evergrey - Glorious Collision
http://musiccredo.files.wordpress.com/2011/02/evergrey-glorious-collision-2011.jpg?w=300&h=300

Everyone here should know by now that Evergrey are one of my favorite bands. I think their first 5 albums are an almost unparalleled streak of awesomeness almost no other band has ever achieved - but in 2006 things took an ubrupt turn with their album Monday Morning Apocalypse which many (myself included), didn't particularly care for. In 2008 they released Torn, which was a step back in the right direction, but ultimately was still a step short of the quality I expected from an Evergrey album as a whole. This album has seen the band completely return to their glory of the past, but in a completely fresh way. This album is not simply a return to form, nor is it reliving their former glories. The band has managed to create an album here that almost plays like a "Best Of" album done with all new songs, if that makes any sense - it's sort of a mixture of their classic sound (for example, "It Comes From Within" really reminds me of something off Solitude Dominance Tragedy), with a really successful approach to their newer sound mixed in. There's more keyboards than on the past two albums, the guitar work is more memorable, the riffs are better and not so seemingly pre-occupied with being as heavy as possible, and the songs are just a bit more memorable. The band notably changed 3/5 of its lineup before recording this album, and I must say that I think these changes were for the best. I think it removed a lot of the peripheral influence I didn't care for and allowed Tom S. Englund and Co. to make a very fresh and incredibly powerful new album and absolutely assure the future of this band.

Featured Track: "Leave it Behind Us" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kp1ys35Q3Ls)

ravenheart
12-29-2011, 05:04 PM
the 4 remaining have to be symphony x, evergrey, pagan's mind and Riot, not necessarily in that order.

Not that it's predictable or anything ;)

MPF
12-29-2011, 05:10 PM
Not that it's predictable or anything ;)

*Said way way into the top 4* ;)

ravenheart
12-29-2011, 07:01 PM
Most of the list could have been predicted if order were set aside.

Come on Jeff, throw us a curveball and pull out a thrash album for #1 ;)

DethMaiden
12-29-2011, 07:02 PM
I'm just wondering how he has room for Riot, Symphony X, and Fucked Up. :confused:

ravenheart
12-29-2011, 07:06 PM
I'm just wondering how he has room for Riot, Symphony X, and Fucked Up. :confused:

Simple. Riot aren't in because their album is boring ;)

Maiden33
12-29-2011, 09:37 PM
Simple. Riot aren't in because their album is boring ;)

I don't want to get into a big spiel about this, but to most simply sum up how I feel:

The Riot album has everything about it that makes a great Riot album in my eyes. I love Riot. Thusly, I love this album. I don't really think I should need to defend it beyond that.

Maiden33
12-30-2011, 06:51 AM
#2: Riot - Immortal Soul
http://metalfields.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/riot-immortal-soul.jpg?w=300&h=300

Riot are one of my favorite bands, largely because I think they've tried a bunch of different styles throughout their 35-year career and never really failed at anything. From the Hard Rock sound of their early years, to the speed-metal/US power metal style of their classic Thundersteel album, to the Thin Lizzy-influenced classic metal sound of the Mike Dimeo-fronted era - the band has never released anything I don't like - and I especially did really love their previous album, 2006's Army of One, so even though this is a reunion of the 1987-1991 lineup of the band, I don't really consider it a comeback album. The band has revisited the speed/power metal style of the Thundersteel and Privilege of Power albums, with a renewed force of energy. I just love this album, that's really all there is to it, since this is my own personal list. Aside from Ravenheart, I actually haven't seen this get any negative reviews, but I know he's still going to give me some sort of shit about it.

Featured Track: "Riot" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lvbFXo-M8ec)

Maiden33
12-31-2011, 08:34 AM
#1: Symphony X - Iconoclast
http://www.allflac.com/covers/b_67052_Symphony_X-Iconoclast-2011.jpg

Well, here we are. I will say that this wasn't even close for me actually. Most years, I end up strongly conflicted between 2 or 3 albums for this #1 spot, but this year, I've been pretty determined for months that this would take the honor. Don't get me wrong, this was a great year - this is probably the strongest top 20 I've ever assembled, but Iconoclast just has a certain quality to it that makes me love it so much more than everything else.
I admit I was not the world's biggest fan of 2007's Paradise Lost. There were a few songs I loved (Title track, Revelation, Eve of Seduction) - but on the whole I didn't particularly care for the new direction, and was really scared of what the future might hold for the band. Iconoclast is, in my opinion, the album Symphony X needed to make at this point in their career. This album has enough of the new ground they covered on Paradise Lost, and a solid dose of what made their older stuff so great that it sort of makes everyone happy. Each year I usually only encounter maybe a half-dozen to a dozen albums that easily transcend the "new music" label as stuff I listen to for that year and become just music I love and music I want to listen to regularly, regardless. Iconoclast made that jump by far the most easy of any 2011 release, in fact the actual double-CD has barely left my car since the week the record came out. Though the album is full of highlights, for me, the far-and-away highlight track is without a doubt "When All is Lost", which to me is not only the best song on the record, but at this point I would say it's one of my favorite songs this band has ever recorded, which is a huge deal for me. It's just perfect.

Featured Track: "When All is Lost" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rw4SdGv5UzI)

GarageMetal468
12-31-2011, 11:36 AM
For some reason I didn't like the new Symphony X as much as I thought I would, even after 2 or 3 listens... But it's been a while since I've listened to it and I've been meaning to give it another listen just to make sure I'm not missing anything.

Anyway, this was a great list. Though I'm not as big into prog/power as you are and Iconoclast was pretty much the only album on here I've heard, I can tell this was a fun time putting it together as it was seeing what was next. I'll probably get around to checking some of these bands out in the future.

maidenpriest
12-31-2011, 10:35 PM
Definitely the best album of the year. I agree that When All is Lost is the best song on the album. Only songs that i thought were below the cut were Heretic and Lords of Chaos. everything else was fantastic to me. So excited to see the tour for this album.

SomewhereInTime72
01-02-2012, 10:04 AM
Wow, I honestly wasn't expecting Iconoclast to be your #1. But I think it's completely understandable to put it there. It's really high up for me too and it's just overall :drool:. I just thought that with it's similarity to Paradise Lost it might have it's position swapped with Evergrey or something ;). Awesome list man.

Maiden33
01-02-2012, 10:10 AM
Thanks to everyone who followed this list. I just posted this to Facebook:
40. Fate - Ghosts From the Past
39. Elevener - Symmetry in Motion
38. Serpentine - Living and Dying in High Definition
37. Doogie White - As Yet Untitled
36. Iron Savior - The Landing
35. Hibria - Blind Ride
34. Demon's Eye - The Stranger Within
33. Royal Hunt - Show Me How to Live
32. Ronny Munroe - Lords of the Edge
31. Mr. Big - What If?
30. Sinner - One Bullet Left
29. Enbound - And She Says Gold
28. The Magnificent - The Magnificent
27. Saxon - Call to Arms
26. Charred Walls of the Damned - Cold Winds on Timeless Days
25. Voodoo Circle - Broken Heart Syndrome
24. Myrath - Tales of the Sand
23. Arch / Matheos - Sympathetic Resonance
22. Anubis Gate - Anubis Gate
21. Presto Ballet - Invisible Places
20. Anthrax - Worship Music
19. Flaming Row - Elinoire
18. Journey - Eclipse
17. Dream Theater - A Dramatic Turn of Events
16. Lost in Thought - Opus Arise
15. Theocracy - As the World Bleeds
14. Malison Rogue - Malison Rogue
13. Eumeria - Rebel Mind
12. Epysode - Obsessions
11. Borealis - Fall From Grace
10. Stratovarius - Elysium
09. Redemption - This Mortal Coil
08. Iced Earth - Dystopia
07. Toby Hitchcock - Mercury's Down
06. Subsignal - Touchstones
05. Eden's Curse - Trinity
04. Pagan's Mind - Heavenly Ecstasy
03. Riot - Immortal Soul
02. Evergrey - Glorious Collision
01. Symphony X - Iconoclast

Fe Maiden
01-28-2012, 10:22 AM
#22:
Arch/Matheos - Sympathetic Resonance
http://www.hellbound.ca/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Arch_Matheos_SympatheticResonance_th.jpg
Those who love the voice of John Arch from his tenure with Fates Warning back in the early/mid 80's were given a teaser of a return back in 2003 with his EP "A Twist of Fate". Arch is back now with a full album, featuring the entire current lineup of Fates Warning (minus Ray Alder, of course) behind him. As a result, the musicianship is absolutely top-notch, not question about it. The production also shines, and the songs (only 6, but 3 are over 10 minutes) are very strong as well. The only thing that stops me from loving this so much more is that I just am not a huge fan of John Arch's voice. I never have been, and that probably won't ever change. If Alder had sung on this as a Fates Warning record, it would probably be in the top 10 or 15. Nevertheless, it's still a great record.
Featured track: "Midnight Serenade" (Official Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwcL04CYews)I'd put this much higher based on just the music alone.....I understand what you mean about Arch's vocals.....but it sounds great overall.

Fe Maiden
04-03-2012, 02:24 PM
#9: Redemption - This Mortal Coil
http://www.heberger-image.fr/data/images/26066_pochette_redemption.jpeg
Even though #9 is clearly a very high position, when a band previously held three top 3 albums in 2009, 2007, and 2005 with 3 consecutive albums, #9 feels like a step down, and sadly, it is. I've praised Redemption as the best new band of the 2000-2009 decade, who have a fairly unique approach to Progressive Metal. For those who aren't familiar with them, the band takes a relatively darker and more emotional approach to Prog Metal, with very personal and introspective lyrics sung by the very emotional vocals of Fates Warning's Ray Alder. Despite all of the players in the band being outstanding, they usually don't get too much into typical Prog wankery and remain relatively song-based. This Mortal Coil is no exception to any of that, with the lyrics taking on an even more personal tone, as this album was inspired by guitarist/lyricist Nic Van Dyk being diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, and his coming to grips with his own mortality. On paper that should've made this my favorite Redemption album, but sadly two things I think hold it back. One, I think this Ray Alder's weakest vocal performance on a Redemption album. I don't know if it was just a weak performance or if he's truly losing his touch, but his voice is just a bit dry and weak at times. My other complaint is the production and overall sound of this album, which to me is just strange. It's not necessarily bad, just very weird, and I particularly don't care much for the guitar tone. That being said, the songs are pretty much as strong as anything Redemption have done before, hence how they can still manage to land at #9 in such a competitive year. They remain one of my favorite bands around today. Also, this album features a bonus disc on some versions that includes some cool and unexpected covers.

Featured Track: "No Tickets to the Funeral" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FAc4P4Vq_rI)I think this album is spectacular.