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  #1  
Old 12-06-2015, 07:12 AM
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Spiner202 Spiner202 is offline
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Spiner's 2015 Year-End Review

Spiner's 2015 Year-End Review

2015 was yet another fantastic year in music! Unlike prior years, however, 2015 was a little more consistent in releasing good albums, but not great records. The best albums from this year would probably be quite a bit lower in other years, but nevertheless, there was still a lot of great music released.

This year, I'll be giving out the following lists:

Top 3 most disappointing live bands
Top 5 most disappointing albums
Top 10 live bands of the year
Top 30 albums of the year

Let's get started:

Top 3 most disappointing live bands

3. Alestorm - February 5, 2015 - The Mod Club

Have you ever been to a concert where you felt totally out of place? This was me, when I saw Alestorm earlier this year. I've been there since almost the beginning; I bought their first record as soon as it came out, and I've seen them several times over the last few years, but this concert was weird. It seemed like a bunch of people who like metal ironically. The band themselves were fine, but this one was hard to enjoy simply because of the crowd there. I will have no problem going to see them in the future, but I hope this isn't the way their fanbase is going.

2. Bolt Thrower - June 20, 2015 - London Music Hall

This is how you know it was a good year of live music for me. I know it's pretty much blasphemy to say anything negative about Bolt Thrower, but I will. This concert was a letdown for two reasons. The first was that the sound sucked and was really muddy sounding, and the second was that they were completely upstaged by Razor. To be fair to the band, they were still incredibly crushing, but they didn't live up to the lofty expectations set by others.

1. Falconer - July 31, 2015 - Wacken Open Air

Falconer is a great band, but anyone familiar with them knows they're not really a live band. Their set was plagued by technical problems, and unfortunately Mathias Blad is not much of a frontman beyond executing things technically correct. They actually played a really solid setlist in terms of the songs they chose, but they didn't really captivate the audience. On the other hand, this was my only chance to see the band, so it was still worth it, they just weren't all that good.
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Old 12-06-2015, 08:46 AM
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I remember nothing of Bolt Throwers performance that night. That usually doesn't happen to me.

I do remember Razor and they were awesome!
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Old 12-06-2015, 09:56 AM
Breaking The Law Breaking The Law is offline
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I agree with you that there were a lot of really good releases but nothing I would say was earth shattering. I do my own personal top 15 or so list and usually have a clear cut winner by now but this year will really have to compare to see who comes out on top.
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Old 12-06-2015, 10:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Breaking The Law View Post
I agree with you that there were a lot of really good releases but nothing I would say was earth shattering. I do my own personal top 15 or so list and usually have a clear cut winner by now but this year will really have to compare to see who comes out on top.
Exactly. My top 8 are almost all interchangeable with one another depending on what I'm feeling. Likewise, the next 22 are all almost interchangeable, and there were so many releases that are hard to leave off. Normally there is a clear cut winner, or top 3 that are mind-blowing. With that said, I think most of my list will be pretty different from most of the lists here, so stay tuned
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Old 12-07-2015, 07:00 AM
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Top 5 Most Disappointing Albums

5. Hollywood Vampires - Hollywood Vampires

I had a feeling this wouldn't be all that mind-blowing considering that Alice was covering songs that I didn't really like. Even so, the fact that it took him 3 years to record this, messed up his touring cycle again, and will probably not have another album for at least a couple of years is frustrating. It would have been redeeming if the original songs were fantastic, but they don't top anything on W2MN. I definitely won't revisit this album too much.

4. Cattle Decapitation - The Anthropocene Extinction

Monolith of Inhumanity was an incredible record. In fact, it was almost too good. It set the expectations so high for this next record, that the band was sure to disappoint. And that's exactly what they did. The reason why The Anthropocene Extinction is a disappointment is not because it's a rehash of their last record; it is because it just isn't as good. The songs aren't really all that memorable, and they've become much more formulaic with the way they use clean vocals. While this isn't an outright bad record, it could have been much more.
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Old 12-07-2015, 09:46 AM
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Bolt Thrower's sound was definitely a little muddy, though I found it fitting in a way. Made you feel like you were in the trenches with bombs and missiles going off

A friend of mine was at the Alestorm show, he said pretty much the same thing you did. A lot of people seem to like them for the novelty moreso than their actual music unfortunately.
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Old 12-07-2015, 09:59 AM
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Yeah, the Cattle Decapitation album was 'meh'.
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Old 12-07-2015, 03:57 PM
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Some controversial picks so far, I like that.
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Old 12-08-2015, 07:58 AM
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3. Satan - Atom By Atom

In 2013, having never heard Satan before, but knowing of their legendary reputation, I gave a listen to Life Sentence when I got the promo. It was about a month before the release date, but I knew everyone would love it, and rightfully so. It's a great record. The follow-up, however, seems to be receiving as much praise despite being a much worse record. At its core, they aren't really all that different, but that's exactly the problem. There are certain melodies on this record that sound nearly identical to the ones on the last album. Combine that with the fact that these songs are far less memorable and inspired, and Atom By Atom feels very mechanical. It's not bad, but it doesn't really have anything to bring me back to this one over Life Sentence.

2. Helloween - My God-Given Right

Modern Helloween has been very good, but with their two albums prior to this one, they elevated themselves to a new level. Both 7 Sinners and Straight Out of Hell are among the band's best work. Unfortunately, My God-Given Right is the record that brings them back to being enjoyable but not mindblowing. There are a lot of really cool songs on this one, particularly on the first half of the record (the title track, "Stay Crazy", and "Lost In America" all come to mind), but a lot of the songs on this album aren't as catchy as these three tracks. One strange decision is having "Wicked Game" as a bonus track. This song is better than every song on the album other than the three I mentioned above. Overall, My God-Given Right is a good record, but my expectations were absolutely astronomical, and it failed to live up to them.

1. Rocka Rollas - Pagan Ritual

Speaking of astronomical expectations, this album also had them. At some point, Ced's creativity had to run dry as he's releasing 4 albums a year across his various bands. I'm not so sure this is a creativity issue though; he even admitted after the record that this album doesn't really feel like a Rocka Rollas record with its more epic approach and lack of shredding. These ideas made the album feel long and drawn-out, without any of the sing-along parts of albums past. This one is mainly a disappointment to me because I have to be one of their biggest fans. For some reason it feels like nobody is latching on to Rocka Rollas even though they're one of the best bands in metal. Pagan Ritual isn't the best album to start with, and it's certainly not terrible, but it wasn't what I wanted from the band.
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Old 12-08-2015, 06:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiner202 View Post
2. Bolt Thrower - June 20, 2015 - London Music Hall

This is how you know it was a good year of live music for me. I know it's pretty much blasphemy to say anything negative about Bolt Thrower, but I will. This concert was a letdown for two reasons. The first was that the sound sucked and was really muddy sounding, and the second was that they were completely upstaged by Razor. To be fair to the band, they were still incredibly crushing, but they didn't live up to the lofty expectations set by others.
You're fucked. BT killed, muddy sound and all.
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