Top 100 of 2010
1. Enslaved: Axioma Ethica Odini...hands down, the most amazing album this year.
Black metal meets progressive rock, and the end result is Enslaved's
2. Masterplan: Time To Be King...a very close second. Power metal album of the
year. Jorn Lande is back!
3. Black Country Communion: Black Country Communion...a supergroup for the ages!
Impressive 70's styled hard rock with a touch of blues.
4. Orphaned Land: The Never Ending Way of ORWarriOR...ethnic progressive metal,
with a touch of death metal thrown on top. KILLER!
5. Frogg Café: Bateless Edge...are there no limits to what these guys can do? I
6. Decrepit Birth: Polarity...crushing technical death metal. Their best yet!
7. Vanden Plas: The Seraphic Clockwork...One of the best progressive metal bands
around release another stunner!
8. Spock's Beard: X...Best release of the post-Morse era!
9. Helmet of Gnats: High Street...jazz/prog/fusion doesn't get any better than
10. Ihsahn: After...once again the former Emperor frontman proves what a virtuoso
11. Star One: Victims of the Modern Age...bombastic, proggy, & heavy!
12. Nevermore: The Obsydian Conspiracy...Another stellar release from Nevermore
13. Dimmu Borgir: Abrahadabra...Might be too theatrical and orchestral for some,
but I like the symphonic & over the top nature of it all.
14. Myrath: Desert Call...This band was a new discovery for me this year, but I
like their brand of ethnic & symphonic progressive metal
15. Borknagar: Universal...It's been a few years, but well worth the wait.
16. Iron Maiden: The Final Frontier...the cagey old veterans return with another
platter of intelligent & adventurous heavy metal.
17. Kamelot: Poetry For the Poisoned...Not sure what's going on with Kahn these
days, but they still managed to release another winner here.
18. Glass Hammer: If...The band from Tennessee return to bombastic prog on this
super, Yes flavored stunner!
19. Atheist: Jupiter...technical extreme metal pioneers return with a solid
20. Brainstorm: Memorial Roots...One of the most underrated power/prog metal bands
come up with another winner!
21. Mob Rules: Radical Peace...Never much listened to these guys, but after this
killer concept release, I'll be keeping my eyes on them for sure!
22. Fozzy: Chasing the Grail...some of the best hooks in metal. Chris Jericho
proves there's more to him than the WWE!
23. Spiritual Beggars: Return to Zero...Enter Apollo, who is now splitting time
between this band and Firewind. This might be my favorite release from Mike
Amott's alter-ego to Arch Enemy.
24. Circle II Circle: Consequence of Power...a wonderful metal album from Mr.
Stevens & Co!
25. Fear Factory: Mechanize...easily the best FF album in years. New line-up, more
brutal, more memorable, more Fear Factory!
26. Charred Walls of the Damned: s/t...metal supergroup of the year. Richard
Christy, Tim "Ripper" Owens-magic!
27. Firewind: Days of Defiance...another killer power metal platter from Gus G and
28. Barren Earth: Curse of the Red River...death metal, psychedelia, prog
29. Erik Norlander: The Galactic Collective...the keyboard wizard returns with
another jaw dropping release!
30. Immolation: Majesty and Decay...no slowing down for these New York death metal
31. Triptykon: Eparistera Daimones...Tom G and his new band pummel on their debut
32. Haken: Aquarius...heavy modern prog gem, and a band that's going to really go
33. Jon Oliva's Pain: Festival...former Savatage frontman continues to keep the
34. James LaBrie: Static Impulse...excellent solo release from Dream Theater
35. Creation's End: A New Beginning...another metal supergroup that chalked up a
winner this year
36. Ralph Towner/Paolo Fresu: Chiaroscuro...jazz release of the year. Towner is a
12 string guitar legend!
37. Martriden: Encounter the Monolith...US progressive black/death upstarts once
again wow with another killer release
38. Annotations of an Autopsy: The Reign of Darkness...surprise deathcore release
of the year for me. Brutally heavy!
39. Elysium Theory: Modern Alchemy...upstate New York proggers arrive!
40. Dark Tranquility: We Are the Void...not as good as some of their past gems,
but still a solid release for the Swedish melodic death metal legends.
41. Melechesh: The Epigenesis...Lovin' this latest platter from the Israeli black
42. Eloy: Visionary...legendary German prog rock band returns with a solid effort
43. Blind Guardian: at the End of Time...symphonic power metal doesn't get much
better than this!
44. The Pineapple Thief: Someone Here is Missing...a very fine modern prog album,
that many mainstream folks would love
45. Rhapsody of Fire: The Frozen Tears of Angels...I had sort of given up on these
guys, but this one is red hot and a welcome return
46. Black Label Society: The Order of the Black...another band I had given up on. Zakk has seemingly given up the booze and returned with his best album in years!
47. Yngwie Malmsteen: Relentless...Yngwie & Tim 'Ripper' Owens once again give us
48. Unitopia: artificial...awesome modern prog with a 70's flair
49. Exodus: Exhibit B: The Human Condition...no stopping these thrash legends
50. Univers Zero: Clivages...another collection of chilling dark prog from these
51. Keneally/Minnemann: Evidence of Humanity...the musicianship on display here is
52. ReVamp: ReVamp...yes, there is life After Forever
53. Overkill: Ironbound...another 80's thrash band that just keeps getting better
54. Intronaut: Valley of Smoke...psychedelic progressive metal-a must hear!
55. The Ocean: Anthropocentric...moody, dark, psychedelic, proggy, heavy-get it!
56. Cradle of Filth: Darkly, Darkly, Venus Aversa...another solid platter of
gothic & symphonic black metal
57. Gary Husband: Dirty & Beautiful, Volume 1...70's fusion fans need to hear
58. BangTower: Casting Shadows...another hot fusion release. Percy Jones baby!!
59. Gamma Ray: To the Metal...very solid power metal album from Kai Hansen & crew
60. Canvas Solaris: Irradiance...one of the most consistent prog/fusion bands out
61. Pain of Salvation: Road Salt One...these guys keep changing & morphing. This
one easily surpasses their previous effort.
62. Jones/McGill/DeCarlo: s/t...once again, Percy Jones baby!
63. Freedom Call: Legend of the Shadowking...upbeat power metal to lift your mood!
64. Braindrill: Quantum Catastrophe...technical death metal studs do it again!
65. Angra: Aqua...easily their best in years!
66. Accept: Blood of the Nations...Udo who? If you loved early 80's metal, you
need to hear this one!
67. Cathedral: The Guessing Game...the masters of psychedelic doom
68. Mars Hollow: Mars Hollow...highly enjoyable modern prog outing
69. District 97: Hybrid Child...if there is a prog album that would spark interest
in the mainstream, this is certainly a great choice
70. Pathfinder: Beyond the space, Beyond the Time...wonderful symphonic power
metal concept album
71. Emberstorm: Memories of Time...enjoyable & memorable power/prog metal
72. Roswell Six: Terra Incognita: A Line in the Sand...heavier than the debut, but
still bombastic concept material with killer vocals
73. Aeon: Path of Fire...one of the best technical death metal bands around.
74. Dark Funeral: Angelus Exuro Pro Eternus...No slowing down these black metal
75. FramePictures: Remember It...excellent new progressive metal. A band to watch
76. Bachman & Turner: Bachman & Turner...if you loved BTO, this is as close as you
are going to get. Outstanding!
77. Votum: Metafiction...Porcupine Tree & Katatonia fans need to check this one
78. Garaj Mahal: More Mr. Nice Guy...US fusion band comes up with a winner yet
79. The Dillinger Escape Plan: Option Paralysis...not as drop dead impressive as
past releases, but still quite good
80. Ov Hell: The Underworld Regime...you have to wonder if this is only going to
be a one-off, but it's still damn good black metal from this supergroup
81. Molly Hatchet: Justice...purists may scoff at the fact that there is only one
original member here, but the band still kicks ass and this is one hell of a
Southern Rock album
82. Watain: Lawless Darkness...violent, brutal black metal-what more could you
83. Keep of Kalessin: Reptilian...these guys are really sculpting their style into
a more accessible form of black metal. I like it!
84. The Rebel Wheel: We Are in the Time of Evil Clocks...avant-garde, heavy prog
with a touch of jazz. Sounds like a more modern King Crimson!
85. Terje Rypdal: Crime Scene...longtime ECM jazz guitarist comes up with another
86. North Atlantic Oscillation: Grappling Hooks...this one came out of left field.
Great poppy prog!
87. Symphorce: Unrestricted...so far, my favorite release from these power metal
88. Solution 45: For Aeons Past...there is life after Scar Symmetry!
89. Abigail Williams: In the Absence of Light...superior US symphonic black metal
90. Nik Bartsch's Ronin: Llyria...stunning jazz from the folks at ECM
91. Aisles: In Sudden Walks...wonderful romantic prog
92. Divinity: The Singularity...Canadian technical death/prog metal upstarts
return with another solid release
93. Glyder: Yesterday Today and Tomorrow...Irish hard rockers impress
94. Charles Lloyd Quartet: Mirror...gorgeous jazz album
95. Michael Formanek: The Rub and Spare Change...stunning melodies and daring
improvisations. Another winner from the ECM stable
96. Anat Fort Trio: And If...get swept away by this gorgeous jazz release
97. Eric Johnson: Up Close...guitar virtuoso does it again
98. Forbidden: Omega Wave...another killer release from an 80's thrash veteran
99. Manticora: Safe...thunderous power/progressive metal
100. Robin Trower: The Playful Heart...blues-rock guitar legend shows the
youngsters how it's done
Best Live Albums of 2010
Dio: At Donnington UK-Live 1983 & 1987
The Derek Trucks Band: Roadsongs
Heaven and Hell: Neon Nights
Johnny Winter And: Live at the Fillmore East
Michael Schenker Group: Rockpalast
Soft Machine: NDR Jazz Workshop
Michael Schenker Group: 30th Anniversary Concert-Live in Tokyo
Rory Gallagher: The Beat Club Sessions
While Heaven Wept: Triumph: Tragedy: Transcendence-Live at Hammer of Doom
Joe Satriani: Live in Paris: I Just Wanna Rock
Motian/Potter/Moran: Lost in a Dream
Neurosis: Live at Roadburn 2007
Dickie Betts & Great Southern: Rockpalast
Paul Butterfield Band: Rockpalast
Fair Warning: Talking Ain't Enough-Live in Tokyo
Soft Machine Legacy: Live Adventures
Top 25 of 2010
1. From. Uz: Seventh Story
2. Ephemeral Sun: Harvest Aorta
3. Ihsahn: After
4. Orphaned Land: Never Ending Way Of The OrwarriOR
5. Borknagar: Universal
6. Therion: Sitra Ahra
7. Anathema: We're Here Because We're Here
8. District 97: Hybrid Child
9. Agalloch: Marrow of the Spirit
10. Mars Hollow: Mars Hollow
11. Erik Norlander: The Galactic Collective
12. Spock's Beard: X
13. Unitopia: Artificial
14. Pain Of Salvation: Road Salt One
15. Dimmu Borgir: Abrahadabra
16. Haken: Aquarius
17. Big Big Train: Far Skies Deep Time
18. Roswell Six: Terra Incognita - A Line In the Sand
19. Manning: Charlestown
20. The Pineapple Thief: Someone Here is Missing
21. The Rebel Wheel: We Are in the Time of Evil Clocks
22. Frogg Café: Bateless Edge
23. Jon Oliva's Pain: Festival
24. Star One: Victims of the Modern Age
25. Eloy: Visionary
Top 20 of 2010
1. Periphery: S/T - The BEST new band I have heard in YEARS! They just crush and
their drummer, Matt Halpern is a monster! THIS what 7 stringed guitars should
sound like! Unbelievable.
2. Accept: Blood of the Nations - THIS is what an old school Metal band that
starts over SHOULD sound like....THEMSELVES!! From the 1st notes from Wolf
Hoffmann and Co., Accept explode and announce that they are back, BIG time. Mark Tornillo kick ass in every way possible. WHAT a return for the Metal world!
3. Meshuggah: Alive - It's Meshuggah live, need I say more?! Didn't think so!!
4. Fear Factory: Mechanize - What happens when Burton C. Bell & Dino Cazares
kiss & make up? They get back on track and make ANOTHER killer FF record. It
doesn't hurt to recruit the drum legend, Gene Hoglan either!
5. Overkill: Ironbound - The ONLY Old school Thrash band that has NEVER
disappointed! Blitz & the Wrecking Crew just kill on this latest record.
6. Weapon Head: Surgical Smile - I love these guys! Part Hard Rock, Part Metal,
Part Indie Power Pop...all awesome!
7. Proghma-C-Bar: do Travel - Another WOW band. Who knew that the Polish had
been hiding these guys? Check out their Bjork cover of Army of Me & tell me it
8. Soilwork: The Panic Broadcast - Back on track with a great Swedish Metal
record. One of the real pioneers of the Swedish Metal movement of the past 10
9. John Norum: Play Yard Blues - One of my all time favorite pickers. Norum
slows it down and takes a step backwards into the Blues. Another nice cover of a
Thin Lizzy song. Can never go wrong with anything Lizzy.
10. Black Label Society: Order of the Black - Zakk Wylde delivers his strongest
effort to date. Full of some of the best riffing since his 1st Ozzy record. And
new drummer Will Hunt crushes, too!
11. Richie Kotzen: Peace Sign - The BEST singer/songwriter that no one has
heard. Forget about his shred guitar legend status and LISTEN to that ungodly
voice and his songcrafting. Such a shame that he continues to go unheard. Part
R&B, Part Guitar god = a song styling, bad ass mofo.
12. Black Water Rising: S/T - Great Hard Rock band with an attitude, catchy
songs and GROOVE. If you liked Dark New Day and Sevendust, you will eat these
13. Nevermore: The Obsidian Conspiracy - Dane, Loomis and company release my
favorite Nevermore record so far. A little more straight ahead and more focused.
14. Solution .45: For Aeons Past - Damn, what a great record! Some wicked
grooving going on here. Great clean vocals with deathy shouts underneath and
awesome guitar playing, too.
15. Narnia: Course of a Generation (Reissue) - More Melodic Swedish goodness.
What a pleasant surprise.
16. FEN: Trails Out of Gloom - Dark, depressing and awesome.
17. Ihsahn: After - I didn't expect to love a solo record from a leader of a
Black Metal band, but holy shit, do I! What a talented guy.
18. Fozzy: Chasing the Grail - The Duke aka Rich Ward! One of the most
underrated Metal guitar players with the GREATEST tone! No one writes a groove
or riff like him. Chris Jericho sounds better on each & every record.
19. Deftones: Diamond Eyes - To the point, powerful and gritty. It's been a
while since these guys were firing on all cylinders.
20. Mnemic: Sons of the System - Another great release from these guys. More
powerful grooving within.
Best of 2010 List
This list could have easily been doubled. There is such a wealth of fantastic
releases this year.
1. Mindwarp Chamber: Supernova - Progressive metal at it's finest. This is the
must have disc of the year.
2. Mindgames: MMX - Irresistible progressive
3. Agalloch: Marrow of the Spirit - Melodic dark
4. Anima Mundi: The Way - A band that is going to set the
progressive world on fire.
5. Unwritten Pages: Pt. 1. Noah - Monster debut
with 2 disc concept album.
6. Iron Maiden: The Final Frontier - Veteran
rockers show how it's done!
7. In Vain: Mantra - One of the very best of the
8. David Minasian: Random Acts of Beauty - The title says it all.
9. Circle II Circle: Consequence Of Power - Another brilliant offering from Zak
Stevens and company!
10. Glass Hammer: If - Progressive music as it should
11. Avantasia: The Wicked Symphony - Tobias Sammet does it
12. Avantasia: Angel Of Babylon - See above!
13. Paul Oakley: Out
Of The Ashes - Amazing instrumental guitarist!
14. Hookah The Fuzz: Hookah
The Fuzz - Mesmerizing blend of metal, jazz, symphonic, thrash and about every
other genre known to man!
15. Dawn of Silence: Wicked Saint or Righteous
Sinner - A killer power metal band for fans of Avantasia etc. .
Earth: Curse of the Red River - Easily one of the most powerful metal albums of
17. Jon Oliva's Pain: Festival - One of the greatest songwriters
of our time continues to astound.
18. Emberstorm: Memories Of Time - From
left field comes this new Swedish power metal powerhouse.
19. Aeon Zen: The
Face of the Unknown - Last year's artist of the year is back again with a
terrific progressive metal release.
20. Voodoo Johnson: 10,000 Horses - This
is how heavy metal should sound. Dynamite rock and roll with their first full
21. Sully Erna: Avalon - A surprise from the Godsmack frontman.
22. Blind Guardian: At The Edge Of Time - Another great release from one of the
best there is.
23. In This Moment: A Star-Crossed Wasteland - The best
female fronted metal band on the planet does it again.
Sevenfold: Nightmare - Their best offering ever and a habit forming album.
25. Disturbed: Asylum - Picking up where they left off last time.
Revenent Dead: Two Evils - Massive metal from Birmingham, England.
Masterplan: Time To Be King - Jorn and Company give us a treat!
The Showdown - Two terrific vocalists, one package!
29. Crematory: Infinity -
Melodic death metal masters.
30. Spock's Beard: X - They give us another
31. Black Label Society: Order Of The Black - Their strongest
32. Murderdolls: Women and Children Last - Great campy metal.
33. Charred Walls of the Damned: Charred Walls of the Damned - A
must have metal album.
34. Heaven Grey: Falling Mist - A gothic metal
35. Keep of Kalessan: Reptilian - These guys just keep getting
36. Manticora: Safe - This one is a Safe bet! Great Swedish metal.
37. Enslaved: Axioma Ethica Odini - Epic album pure and simple.
Godsmack: The Oracle - Heavy metal with a vengeance!
39. Gravedigger: The
Clans Will Rise Again - A brilliant folk metal album.
40. Rob Zombie:
Hellbilly Deluxe 2 - Like a B grade horror movie.
41. Shattered Hope:
absence - A captivating doom metal disc.
42. Gamma Ray: To The Metal - Fist
pumping metal anthems abound!
43. Rhapsody of Fire: Frozen Tears Of Angels -
A tasty power metal treat!
44. Cradle of Filth: Darkly, Darkly, Venus Aversa
- A cool, dark concept work.
45. Votum: Metafiction - A dark full bodied
prog metal treat.
46. Heaven Grey: Falling Mist - Brooding, gothic
47. Buddy Guy: Living Proof - Blues guitar legend struts his
48. Vanden Plas: The Seraphic Clockwork - Majestic power metal treat.
49. Orphaned Land: The Never Ending Way of ORWarriOR - Magical blend of
metal and the Holy Land.
50. Star One: Victims of the Modern Age - Arjen
Lucassen's newest masterpiece.
51. Dimmu Borgir: Abrahadabra - A melodic
death metal must have.
52. Kamelot: Poetry For The Poisoned - Roy Khan and
Company does it again.
53. Ihsahn: After - Another huge album from the
54. Throes of Dawn: The Great Fleet of Echoes -
Atmospheric, dark brooding metal.
55. Equalibrium: Rekreatur - Exquisite
fork metal with dynamite orchestration.
56. Areknames: In Case of Loss -
Terrific prog with a jazzy feel.
57. Rage: Strings To A Web - 25 years and
still a powerhouse!
58. Volbeat: Beyond Hell Above Heaven - Americana metal.
59. James LaBrie: Static Impulse - I like this one more with
60. Pertness: From The Beginning To The End - Power Metal to the
61. AnsoticcA: Rise - Female fronted gothic metal, what a terrific
62. Seventh Wonder: The Great Escape - Magnificent progressive album.
63. Marcos De Ros: Pecas de Bravura - Guitar virtuoso very aptly titled
64. Sky Architect: Excavations of the Mind - New retro prog rockers.
65. Cancerbats: Bears, Mayors,Scraps & Bones - Hardcore punk face melter!
66. Iron Fate: Cast in Iron - Vocalist Denis Brosowski has a set of pipes!!
67. Gallows End: Nemesis Divine - Old school heavy metal...Yes!!
Way: Building The Tower - New singer, new attitude, new metal must have disc!
69. Kivimetsan Druidi: Betrayal, Justice, Revenge - Folk metal fun!
Giant: Promise Land - The return of hair metal. Just good old fashion fun.
71. Heljareyga: Heljareyga - Power/folk metal debut that is impressive.
The Howling Void: Shadows Over The Cosmos -Chilling funeral doom metal.
Instanzia: Ghosts - Canadian power metalers who rock.
74. Kerion: The
Origins - Female fronted French power metal.
75. Klone: Black Days - Many
metal genres blended to make a massive album!
76. Kylesa: Spiral Shadow -
Sludgy, psychedelic and hypnotic.
77. Helloween: 7 Sinners - They are back
with a vengeance!
78. Innerwish: No Turning Back - Greek melodic power metal.
79. Sinbreed: When Worlds Collide - Hard to resist power metal.
Magics: Behind The Sorrow - Female fronted symphonic metal.
Vision: Sacrifice - Prog metal goodness. This is a keeper!!
82. Viathyn: The
Peregrine Way - Canadian progressive metal. Very good!
83. The Sword: Warp
Riders - Heavy metal sci-fi concept disc.
84. Sunrise: Trust Your Soul -
Ukrainian power metal treat.
85. Dark Tranquility: We Are The Void -
Anything but tranquil!
86. Negura Bunget: Virstele Pamintului - Folk/black
metal mixture that works!
87. Signum Regis: The Eyes of Power - Heavy metal
88. Icewind: Again Came The Storm - Melodic power metal.
89. Monster Magnet: Mastermind - Heavy metal as it should be played.
90. The Showdown: Blood in the Gears - Southern testosterone filled metal.
91. Firewind: Days of Defiance - Powerful Gus G at his day job!
Accept: Blood Of The Nations - Take the thrashing you are about to receive.
93. Myrath: Desert Call - Terrific Middle East metal. Rock the oasis!
Carach Angren: Death Came Through A Phantom Ship - Symphonic death metal that is
95. Anubis: Waking The Dead - They just keep getting better and
96. Jerry Jennings: Shortcut To The Center - Instrumental guitarist
97. Something Beautiful: Songs About Angels - Terrific
98. Mutiny Within: Mutiny Within - Watch out for these guys.
They are good.
99. George Lynch: Orchestral Mayhem - He is a guitar God!
Best of 2010
2010 was another strong year for music. As usual, there were many albums I did
not have the pleasure of hearing including new releases by District 97, Frogg Café, Glass Hammer, Anathema, Helmet of Gnats, Demians, Haken and many others too numerous to mention. That said, here
are my favourite albums this year:
1. Spock's Beard: X
2. From.uz: Seventh Story (My favourite album of 2010.
3. Persephone's Dream: Pan: An Urban Pastoral (The band
outdid themselves this time. Their best release to date and one of the year's
4. Orphaned Land: The Never Ending Way Of ORwarriOR
(Progressive metal does not get any better than this.)
5. The Pineapple
Thief: Someone Here Is Missing
6. Psychedelic Ensemble, The: The Myth Of
Dying (Top notch progressive rock and a joy to listen to.)
7. Tea Club, The:
Rabbit (One of modern prog's finest bands and an excellent sophomore effort.)
8. Hackett, Steve: Out Of the Tunnel's Mouth (I love this disc, definitely one
of his best.)
9. Norlander, Erik: The Galactic Collective (This should be
prerequisite listening for all keyboard players. Norlander revisits some of his
best songs and makes them even better.)
10. Rebel Wheel: We are in the Time
of Evil Clocks (This is one wild ride of adventurous progressive rock. It still
surprises after repeated listens.)
11. Carptree: Nymf (A fine follow up to
Insekt and another lovely display of moody progressive rock.)
Arrival (If you like epic songs, you will love Arrival. Hamel's finest work.)
13. Manzanera, Phil: The Music 1972 to 2008 (One of the best compilation albums
I have had the pleasure of hearing.)
14. Dianoya: Obscurity Divine (This
Polish band completely blew me away with their unique brand of edgy progressive
15. Roswell Six: Terra Incognita: A Line In the Sand (The second part
of the trilogy takes the band into heavier territory. Another great listen.)
16. Sky Architect: Excavations Of the Mind (An excellent album filled to the
brim with epic style progressive rock.)
17. Relocator: Relocator (One of the
best metal/fusion albums released this year.)
18. K2: Black Garden (A
powerful album of inspired progressive rock.)
19. Keneally, Mike/Marco
Minnemann: Evidence Of Humanity (Improvisation never sounded so good.)
Modest Midget: The Great Prophecy of a Small Man (The band's unique style of
quirky progressive rock is like a breath of breath air.)
21. IO Earth: IO
Earth (Another fantastic debut album. Yes it is pompous, but it is oh so
22. Proximal Distance: Proximal Distance (If you are a fan of
Pink Floyd you will want this album.)
23. BangTower: Casting Shadows (Heavy
fusion and first class musicianship makes this an outstanding debut album.)
24. Delusion Squared: Delusion Squared (Modern progressive rock from France with
a flair for technical virtuosity and great melodies.)
25. Panic Room:
Satellite (The band does a great job combining different styles and
incorporating some great melodies along the way.)
26. KOI: In Tomorrow Hid
Yesterday (Another fine progressive rock band from Sweden. Should we expect
27. Watson, Dean: Unsettled (One of the best instrumental
albums of the year.)
28. Chris: Making Sense (The very talented drummer of
Sky Architect has made a tasty album of symphonic rock and pop.)
Anti-Matter Gravity (Delicious melodic prog and one of the nicest surprises of
30. Rausch: Rausch (Poppy prog at its finest and excellent piano
31. Picchio dal Pozzo: A_Live (A fine album of avant prog
focusing on dreamy atmospherics and beautiful melodies. )
32. All Over
Everywhere: Inner Firmaments Decay (Lush and melodic folky prog shrouded in a
veil of melancholy.)
33. American Hollow: Whisper Campaign (A richly varied
release and a fine debut album.)
34. Kulju, Dave: Notes In the Margin (Fans
of David Gilmour should take notice.)
35. Soul Enema: Thin Ice Crawling
(Excellent symphonic progressive rock from Israel.)
36. Solstice: Spirit (A
more introspective take on classic style prog.)
37. Cleveland, Barry:
Hologramatron (Excellent progressive rock with an experimental edge.)
WolfSpring: WolfSpring (A modern approach to prog with a nod to past greats.
Love the vocals.)
39. Wishing Tree, The: Ostara (A mellower Rothery and the
beautiful voice of Hannah Stobart.)
Best of 2010
It's best of time once again and there has been so much enjoyable music during
the past year, so instead of rating the lot I just narrowed it down to my top
1. Myrath: Desert Call
2. Orphaned Land: Never Ending Way Of The OrwarriOR
3. Heavenly: Carpe Diem
4. Dimmu Borgir: Abrahadabra
5. Therion: Sitra Atra
6. Vanden Plas: The Seraphic Clockwork
7. Helstar: Glory Of Chaos
8. Star One: Victims Of The Modern Age
9. Helloween: 7 Sinners
10. Heathen: The Evolution Of Chaos
11. Overkill: Ironbound
12. Magic Kingdom: Symphony of War
13. Rhapsody Of Fire: The Frozen Tears Of Angels
14. James Labrie: Static Impulse
15. Avantasia: Angel Of Babylon and The Wicked Symphony - box set
16. Nevermore: The Obsidian Conspiracy
17. Dark Moor: Ancestral Romance18. Accept - Blood Of Nations
19. Kamelot: Poetry For The Poisoned
20. Mob Rules: Radical Peace
Other bands/acts that have releases which deserve mention include Angra,
Wuthering Heights, Soulfly, Seventh Wonder, Labyrinth, Haken, Blind Guardian,
Firewind, Sodom, Death Angel, Immolation, Elvenking, Rage, Sabaton, Tarja,
Exodus, Iron Maiden, Voices Of Extreme, Freedom Call and Gamma Ray. Albums that
fell short came from Annihilator, Ozzy Ozbourne and Disturbed.
Mark 'Tosh' Davies
Once again 2010 has lived up to all expectations and what a fantastic time to
appreciate guitar driven music. Well after alot of thought and deliberation here
we go with my top albums of 2010...
Top CDs of 2010
1. Audrey Horne: Audrey Horne (Excellent album and excellent live band, the
coming together of many black metal band members to produce the best album of
2010 with killer chorus' throughout. I've just played it to death)
2. Slash: Slash (Almost top but missed it by a g-string! The ultimate summer
album and an amazing choice of vocalists that suit every song chosen for them
perfectly, and Slash just rips the fret board apart)
3. Alterbridge: AB III (Every album by these guys just gets better and AB III is
no exception, simply stunning)
4. James Labrie: Static Impulse (If Dream Theater never made another album this
guy will never suffer, heavy as you like and his voice is in top form)
5. Grand Magus: Hammer Of The North (Injected full of Sabbath riding skidoos
through the forest,I love it because it sounds so heavy at extreme volume)
6. Black Country Communion: Black Country Communion (The term 'super group' is
often used but this really is the ultimate definition)
7. Stone Sour: Audio Secrecy (A little more commercial doesn't mean more
lightweight, well crafted songs and Corey Fucking Taylor, the end)
8. Dio: Donington Live '83 - '87 (Not always a fan of live albums but this one
is just perfect, this is why Ronnie was loved so much he gave his all to his
live performance and this captures it perfectly)
9. Black Label Society: Order Of The Black (When you think Zakks knocked down he
comes back with the album of his career 'Overlord' just rips your face off)
10. Baptized In Blood: Baptized In Blood (New signings to Roadrunner with an
album that steams along at 100mph, heavy metal is back...and they have Blood in
Another fantastic year for live gigs has seen me cover the length and breadth of
the U.K and this year saw me travel to 3 festivals in 3 country's in 3 weeks and
also a few in the U.S, here is my very difficult top 10 gigs/performances of
Top Live Gigs of 2010
1. Heaven & Hell (High Voltage Festival Victoria Park London. Glenn Hughes and
Jorn Lande made a grown man cry and I'm not afraid to admit it)
2. Devin Townsend (Cheyenne Saloon Las Vegas. Mad musical genius blows me away
with an amazing performance)
3. Down (High Voltage Festival Victoria Park London. Phill and the boys bring
the deep south to London and tear it up)
4. A Perfect Circle (The Pearl @ The Palms Las Vegas. Two nights and two full
albums,is this the end? I hope not judging from these perfect performances)
5. Amorphis (Bloodstock Festival Derby England. First time for me and what a
show was well worth the wait)
6. Y&T (Download Festival Derby England. Classic rock stalwarts show the
youngsters how to put on a gig, shame it was a little short)
7.I shan (Hellfest Festival Clisson France. Amazing, simply amazing)
8. Slash (Graspop Metal Meeting Dessel Belgium. A masterstroke having Myles
Kennedy on vocals and Slash just oozed 'Rock Star' from every pours in his body)
9. Audrey Horne ( High Voltage Festival Victoria Park London. What a
performance!! Had me singing along and moshing like the Bastard son of Lemmy)
10. Rammstein (Sonisphere Festival Knebworth England. Fire, Fire and more Fire,
the last time England saw this much fire from the Germans in England was in
Well there we have it let's hope 2011 brings us more of the same and the much
awaited Van Halen appearance in the U.K.
Here's to 2011.....
Top Ten Releases of 2010
1. Deathspell Omega: Paracletus. A twisting, churning monolith of bizarre and
technical black metal, Paracletus remains one of the most intriguing and
captivating metal releases I've heard this year. Simply put, this is an album
that will possibly outlive the novelty of every other entry on this list, purely
on account of its sheer originality and riveting vigour. The album's single,
'Devouring Famine', might be among the most fundamentally disturbing pieces of
music ever released. Simultaneously ugly and beautiful.
2. Periphery: Periphery. Undoubtedly the most anticipated metal release of 2010,
the Periphery debut bursts with an energy and ferocity that is surprising,
considering how long it's been in the making. Misha 'Bulb' Mansoor proves his
worth as one of the pioneers of the progressive djent style, and a fresh yet
competent supporting team comes together in perfect synergy to produce an album
that has already set the template for innumerable bands to come. A defining
statement for modern metal.
3. Ihsahn: After. The legendary Ihsahn's third solo effort brings several new
elements to Vegard Sverre Tveitan's already eclectic palette, culminating in the
most mature and accomplished addition to his expansive oeuvre. Dark, pensive and
melancholic, with decidedly wistful undertones courtesy Jorgen Munkeby's slick
saxophone performance, After is the perfect end to Ihsahn's planned trilogy of
albums, a summation of a veteran's collective musical sensibilities, coupled
with a robust and full-bodied production job to bolster a near-perfect work.
4. John McLaughlin and the 4th Dimension: To The One. Brimming with a rare sort
of chemistry between four highly skilled instrumentalists, To The One sees
McLaughlin at his recent best, backed by a rhythm section featuring Etienne
M'Bappe, Mark Mondesir and the legendary Gary Husband. Explosively spirited and
driving, To The One echoes McLaughlin's open admiration of his primary influence
John Coltrane, while staying true to his reputation of continually reinventing
himself with every release.
5. Demians: Mute. It's hard to believe this gem is the work of one man
performing all instruments. Nicolas Chapel's voice is effortless and evocative,
with an endearing French accent, exuding the sort of class and finesse that's an
unfortunate rarity in current alternative rock. Ably handling guitar, bass,
keyboard and percussion duties, Chapel's uncanny songwriting abilities and
ethereal vocals elevate this album far above the herd.
6. Cloudkicker: Beacons. The third solo album in this list, and Cloudkicker's
second release of the year, Beacons bears the distinction of being 2010's most
singularly beautiful metal album, with lulling melodies and post-rock ambience
punctuating a highly rhythmic modern progressive metal soundscape. Produced
entirely by Ben Sharp himself, Beacons navigates smoothly through a smorgasbord
of moods and feels with unrivalled ease, and Sharp's guitar playing perfectly
walks the very thin line between graceful atmospherics and fretboard wizardry,
to form a refreshingly balanced and human musical statement.
7. Soilwork: The Panic Broadcast. After encountering mass disapproval from their
fan base with 2007's Sworn To A Great Divide, Soilwork got their act together
with The Panic Broadcast. Peter Wichers' return to the band shows just how
irreplaceable and integral he is to the band's chemistry, breathing life into a
band that was leaning towards sounding tired and uninspired. Newcomer Sylvain
Coudret adds a welcome dash of contemporary shred pizzazz to the classic
Gothenburg sound, while vocalist Bjorn 'Speed' Strid turns in a career-best
performance. The Panic Broadcast showcases a band at the peak of its maturity,
with winning formula and a set of musicians to execute it with nothing left to
8. Radiance: The Burning Sun. An ambitious meld of heavily syncopated,
polymetric riffing in the vein of Swedish innovators Meshuggah, and classic
progressive metal, The Burning Sun puts a fresh spin on the somewhat overused
djent sound, infusing it with operatic vocals. The brainchild of Necrophagist
guitarist Sami Raatikainen, Radiance presents a new ideal of modern metal, as
complex, cerebral and daringly experimental, with production values that rival
some of the biggest names in the business. A fantastically accomplished debut.
9. Triptykon: Eparistera Daimones. Thomas Gabriel Fischer is a living legend,
after helming the seminal Celtic Frost and pioneering an entire sub-genre of
metal. After the rather unexpected demise of Celtic Frost, Fischer announced his
new outfit Triptykon, and with a young team backing him, unleashed Eparistera
Daimones. Vicious, seething and defiant, the Triptykon debut is a triumph of
charisma and authority over excess. Let's face it; no one can belch an 'Ugh'
into a microphone as terrifyingly as Fischer.
10. Immolation: Majesty And Decay. Death metal veterans Immolation show no signs
of petering out with their eighth studio album. Majesty And Decay is an exercise
in pummelling, percussive savagery, tempered with the signature agonising
dissonance that put Immolation at the top of the New York scene as far back as
1991. Ross Dolan's thunderous voice is at its menacing best, and Robert Vigna's
riffing is as potent as ever. A welcome return to form.
Top CDs of 2010
1. Myrath: Desert Call - Never ever thought Algerians could make music like this
2. Orphaned Land: The Never Ending Way Of OrwarriOR
3. Division By Zero: Independent Harmony
4. Scorpions: Sting The Tail - because they say it is their epitaph
5. Dianoya: Obscure Infinty - Wonderful Polish music better than a lot of other
6. Dante: Saturnine - The first was good, their second even better.
7. Echoes: Nature existence
8. Edenbridge - Sollitaire
9. Avenged Sevenfold: Nightmare - With DT drummer Mike, in the meantime no
longer with either DT or Avenged...
10. Demians: Mute
11. Glass Hammer: If
12. Kingfisher Sky: Skin Of The Earth
13. The Reasoning: Adverse Camber
14. Molly Hatchet: Justice - Will they get justified after all this time
15. Dead Letter Circus: This Is the warning
16. Pure Reason Revolution: Hammer And Anvil
17. Shadow Theory: Behind The Black Veil
18. Seventh Wonder: The Great Escape
19. Spiritual Beggars: Return To Forever
20. James Labrie: Static Impulse
21. Ark: Wild Untamed Imaginings
22. Disperse: Journey Through The Hidden Gardens
23. Kiske & Sommerville: Kiske & Sommerville
24. My Favorite Scar: My Favorite Scar
25. Prophecy: Illusion Of Time
26. Star One: Victim Of the Modern Age
27. Widespread Panic: Dirty Side Down
28. Chris: Making Sense
29. Mindsplit: Charmed Human Art of Signifigance
30. VandenPlas: Seraphic Clockwork
31. Mystery: One Among The living
32. Mastermind: Insomnia
33. Mastercastle: Last Desire
34. Day Six: The Grand Design
35. Crystal Palace: Reset
36. Oceansize: Self Preserved While Bodies Float Up
37. Sky Architect: Excavations Of The Mind
38. Hookah The Fuzz: Hookah The Fuzz
39. Quandary: Ready To Fail
40. Hemina: As We Know It
41. Pain Of Salvation: Road Salt One
Not Too Heavy List
1. Gazpacho: Missa Atropis - Dreaming of .... So good
2. Agents Of Mercy: Dramarama
3. Guy Manning: Charlestown - Our English story teller, no one does it better
4. King Crow: Phlegethon
5. Persephone's Dream: Pan An Urban Pastoral
6. Haken: Aquarius - A gigantic debut album - seldom heard them better
7. The Enid: The Journey - This is how to mix classic with modern music, Robert
Godfrey and the lads make it happen.
8. Big Big Train: Far Skies Deep Time
9. Pineapple Thief: Someone Here Is Missing
10. District 97: Hybrid Child - from X-factor to highclass music
(The-Top-10-Plus list is not in any particular order)
Angelfire: Angelfire - The inimitable Steve Morse, nobody does it better
Heart: Red Velvet Car - Still going strong the lovely Ann and Nancy Wilson
TinyFish: The Big Red Spark
Mostly Autumn: Go Well Diamond Heart
Aries: Double Reign - Italian prog
Brother Ape: A Rare Moment Of Insight
David Minasian: Random Acts Of Beauty
French TV: I Forgive You For All My Unhappiness
Frogg Café: Bateless Edge
K2: Black Garden
Koi: In Tomorrow Hid Yesterday
Lalle Larson: Weaveworld
PBII: Plastic Soup
Yogi Lang: No Decoder - without RPWL ... sounds great
SBB: Blue Trance - Old polish rockers still going strong
Sunchild: The Wrap
Divine Baze Orchestra: Dead But Dreaming
Unitopia: Artificial - From down under they bring great epics and neo prog
Anathema: We're Here Because We're Here
T: Anti Matter Poetry
From.Uz: Seventh Story
Delusion Squared: Delusion Squared
Morild: Time To rest
Windmill: To Be Continued...
Colin Masson: Mad Monk And The Mountain
Top instrumental albums
1. Dean Watson: Unsettled - How to make a solo album, really solo
2. Relocator: Relocator - German rockers with a fantastic debut CD, instrumental
3. Fusonic: Desert Dreams
4. Lebowski: Cinematic
5. Frames: Mosaik
6. Crack The Sky: Machines
7. Alkenion: Another Time
8. Joe Satriani: Black Holes and Wormhole Wizzards - the instrumental
9. God is An Astronaut: Age Of The Fifth Sun - instrumental but then different
Top 30 Albums of 2010
This has been a terrific year for progressive rock and metal - I've discovered
some truly amazing music in 2010. As I write this Top 30 list, a few
high-profile releases (such as Blind Guardian, Kamelot, and Asia) would've made
my list for sure, but I haven't had the opportunity of hearing them yet. There's
just so much great music and so little time! I had a tough time deciding on a
few neck-and-neck situations in terms of ranking, but I think this is a pretty
consistent list that represents my favorite studio releases of this past year.
1. Shaolin Death Squad: Five Deadly Venoms - An unexpected masterpiece; one of
the best albums of the past decade for sure.
2. Haken: Aquarius - A breathtaking and original progressive rock/metal debut.
3. Empty Tremor: Iridium - An overlooked gem of prog metal; one of the best I've
heard in a long time.
4. Pain of Salvation: Road Salt One - Another amazing effort from PoS; these
guys just keep reinventing themselves!
5. Tinyfish: The Big Red Spark - This prog rock concept release captivated me
from beginning to end; nothing short of spectacular!
6. Enslaved: Axioma Ethica Odini - Another winner from these Norwegian black
7. Demonic Resurrection: The Return to Darkness - Quite possibly the best Indian
metal release ever.
8. Spock's Beard: X - The best post-Morse era album from the Beard for sure!
9. Iron Maiden: The Final Frontier - Another great album from Maiden; these guys
just keep delivering!
10. System Divide: The Conscious Sedation - A heavy, beautiful, and all-around
breathtaking death metal release.
11. Persephone's Dream: Pan - An Urban Pastoral - The unique concept album is
sure to appeal to any fan of classic symphonic prog.
12. Demiurg: Slakthus Gamleby - This Swedish death metal supergroup is one of
the best ever!
13. Avenged Sevenfold: Nightmare - Much better than one might think at first
14. Darkwater: Where Stories End - Progressive power metal at its finest!
15. Star One: Victims of the Modern Age - Arjen Lucassen & co. just keep
delivering amazing albums!
16. Vanden Plas: The Seraphic Clockwork - Another solid effort by these German
prog metal legends.
17. Guillotine: The Cynic - India has an extreme metal scene to keep your eye
on, and Guillotine is great proof of this! An all-around amazing release!
18. The Shadow Theory: Behind the Black Veil - This impressive supergroup never
19. Downspirit: Point of Origin - The seamless blend of blues and power metal
makes for a highly enjoyable experience.
20. Sebastian Persini: Lost City - Instrumental album of the year 2010 - Persini
is an musical mastermind!
21. Albatross: Dinner Is You - This King Diamond-esque EP is another winner in
the Indian metal scene.
22. Dawn of Ashes: Genocide Chapters - This dark, evil, and nightmarish
symphonic black metal album is bound to keep you sleeping with the lights on at
23. Dean Watson: Unsettled - This is the best jazz rock album I've heard in
2010; Dean Watson has created an amazing work of art here.
24. Powerworld: Human Parasite - An enjoyable and impressive power metal album.
25. Atheist: Jupiter - The technical death metal pioneers are back and in
26. Frogg Café: Bateless Edge - These guys are simply one of the best U.S. jazz/prog
rock bands on the scene right now!
27. 7Days: Into Forever - This is everything about progressive power metal gone
28. Life Line Project: Distorted Memories - A highly successful modern symphonic
prog album with breathtaking keyboard wizardry.
29. Cephalic Carnage: Misled by Certainty - This shows a bit of a change in
Cephalic Carnage's crazy deathgrind sound, but is every bit as good as their
previous acclaimed masterpieces.
30. Aborym: Psychogrotesque - Few albums can create as dark an atmosphere as
this one here; turn the volume up and the lights off!
2010 has been, at best, a difficult, at worst awful year for me, most
because my mother passed away during it. This has, understandingly, I hope led
to music not being the be-all-and-end-all kind of thing that it usually is in my
life. Consequently, there are many albums that ordinarily I would have killed
for being unpurchased let alone listened to (Stsr One suffering in particular in
that respect.) Therefore the following may not be as well considered as I'd have
liked and may even be a bit happier than usual but that's what I needed this
Top 20 CDs of 2010
1. Freedom Call: Legend of the Shadowking - Insanely happy music. If there's a
more fun song than Merlin, I'd kill to hear it. Brilliant live act as well.
2. Therion: Sitra Ahra - Reliably excellent.
3. Manowar: Battle Hymns MMXI - Still fabulous.
4. Firewind: Days of Defiance - Not quite as good as The Premonition but highly
5. Bruce Springsteen: The Promise - Springsteen's rejects dwarf most artists'
6. Molly Hatchet: Justice - Not really Molly Hatchet but sounding much better
than for quite a while.
7. Cradle of Filth: Darkly, Darkly, Venus Aversa - I'm in the minority in
thinking that the Filth have actually got better with age.
8. Blackmore's Night: Autumn Sky - Possibly not quite as good as Secret Voyage
but still uniformly excellent expecially the cover of Celluloid Heroes.
9. James LaBrie: Static Impulse - I know some can't get past the extreme vocals
but it's good to hear Jimmy on some short songs for once.
10. Avantasia: Angel of Babylon / Avantasia: The Wicked Symphony - both a
million times better than the last Edguy albm.
11. Helloween: 7 Sinners - Continuing a late period renaissance for the band.
12. The Reasoning: Adverse Camber - Excellent British prog 1
13. Panic Room: Satellite - Excellent British prog 2
14. Meat Loaf: Hang Cool Teddy Bear - Much better than expected. He should pack
it in as a live performer though.
15. FM: Metropolis - Superbly melodic comeback, so much better than their last
records before the split.
16. Sabaton: Coat of Arms - Powerful and melodic.
17. Hellyeah: Stampede - Better Man is one of my favourite sings of the year.
18. Peter Frampton: Thank You Mr. Churchill - Class.
19. Equilibrium: Rekreatur - Folk Metal heaven.
20. Tarja: What Lies Beneath - The odd duff track but also featuring the
incredible (genius or not?) cover of Still of the Night.
Best Live Gigs
HammerFall/ Dream Evil
Best CDs of 2010 - Year End Report
1. Edenbridge: Solitaire - The best new find of 2010! Best female vocalist I
have heard in a very long time. I just cannot take this one off the CD player.
The player is now full of their catalog. Soft and hard mixed perfectly. Best new
band of 2010. When it came down to rating, I have listened to this album and
their catalog more than any other band this year. Really looking forward to what
is next for this band.
2. Anima Mundi: The Way - Wow another great find this year! Like hearing Yes for
the first time again. This is what I wanted in a Yes - influenced band. Not a
copy, but an original with a similar sound and grounding. Can't wait to hear
their next one. It sounds like it will be another epic.
Artificial - This is a fantastic album full of inspiration, innovation and
light. This band had an excellent 2010 with a celebrated European tour. They
have opened the door to stardom and next year will be another big one. Looking
forward to more new music from them next year.
4. Kingcrow: Phlegethon - What
a year of discovery it has been. I think my new favorite location for music is
Italy, with all the friends and bands I have met this year. This band is another
of those great bands that can mix hard and soft so well. This album will rock me
well into 2011. Looking forward to the next turn on their journey. With the
press they're getting this year the story has just begun for this band.
The Watch: Planet Earth - Finally took a chance and bought one of their albums
this year after hearing and reading so much about them over the years. I am so
glad I did too. This is an excellent representation of what early Genesis was
trying to achieve and a possible point in the direction of where they may have
gone if they had stayed together. A fall favorite. Looking forward to their new
album in January 2011.
6. Majestic: Ataraxia - Four of my top six best albums
of the year are new bands I found this year, confirming this great year of
discovery. This was a great surprise to find near the end of the year. I have
two of their back catalog and I have now witnessed the kind of consistency that
makes me look forward to their next.
7. Black Crowes: Croweology - If this
was all new material it would have had a run for the top. Still one of my
favorite blues/rock albums of the year, but it is mostly from the back catalog.
Some of the songs do take on a whole new life with this album. Their concert was
easily concert of the year. A great way to go out on top…if it really is the
8. Black Country Communion: Debut - The debut blues/rock album of the
year with some tough competition. Talking with Glenn and finding out most of
this album was recorded live in one take was enough to lock up a place in the
top ten. Song of Yesterday is just incredible. If they write more of those kinds
of songs there will be no reason for them not to be at the top of the hill next
9. No Sound: sol29 - Remix - What an excellent revision on this album.
Sounds perfect for an album I already enjoyed. Right up there with Unitopia for
CD package of the year. The DVD is wonderful.
10. The Black Keys: Brothers -
This was a summer favorite. It echoed loud all over the Olympic Peninsula!
11. Steve Hackett: Out of the Tunnel's Mouth - Steve's best in years and the
additional tracks on the extended mix lift this high.
12. Karnataka: The
Guiding Light - Still one of my favorites of the year. Excellent work. With the
band re-organized I am really looking forward to their next.
13. Kaipa: In
the Wake of Evolution - The feeling of spring has carried over throughout the
14. Ed Kowalczyk: Alive - I feel allot more alive after hearing this
album. One of the most inspirational albums of the year.
15. Ruby Hill: New
Breed - What a year it has already been for these guys. You should see how far
these guys have come in a year.
16. Star One: Victims of the Modern Age -
Arjen does it again. The movies he chose are great but the hard edge of this
album makes the music some of the best he's produced.
17. Pure Reason
Revolution: Hammer and the Anvil - Excellent work. Glad to see this band back in
form. One of my favorite English bands.
18. Pineapple Thief: Someone Here Is
Missing - I knew this would be good. Most of their albums are, but this one is
so complete. Nothing's missing. However, there is allot of tough competition at
19. Gracious Few: Debut - Excellent debut.
20. Steve Miller:
Bingo - Again, this is all re-makes of older songs. But Steve and his guests
fill these songs full of life again.
21. Fijieri: Endless - Tim and Stefano
make this just incredible!
22. Stefano Panunzi: a Rose - Receiving this with
Fijieri was such a wonderful surprise!
23. Tangents: One Light Year - In a
year full of surprises this one made spring great.
24. Dirty Sweet: American
Spiritual - Great find of the first quarter. Looking forward to the next album.
With the Crowes callin' it quits this may be the band to fill the void in the
25. Tom Petty: Mojo - Excellent work. Glad to see Tom and the boys
26. Joe Bonamassa: Black Rock - Definitely going to rank high on new
artists of the year for me.
27. Karnivool: Sound Awake - Another real
surprise that still gets allot of play.
28. Salem Hill: Pennies in the Karma
Jar - An excellent introduction to this band.
29. Mondo Drag: New Rituals -
Another great surprise.
30. Alex Carpani: Waterline - Memories of the best of
31. Loreweaver: Imperviae Auditiones - What a wonderful surprise!
32. Barbara Rubin: Under the Ice - Beautiful music.
33. Echo Us: Tomorrow
Will Tell the Story - Ethan does it again. Excellent thinking music.
Syngularity: More to Say - More great music from Pascal.
35.Agents of Mercy:
Dramarama - Finally picked up this and the debut. Great music bringing back the
sounds of prog from the past.
36. Sade: Soldier of Love - The couple's album
of the year!
37. Midlake: The Courage of Others - Great for a good cold
38. Tamaryn: The Waves - Another great female vocal with
good synth music.
39. Tron: Movie Soundtrack - Excellent synth work and one
of the best soundtracks I have head in a while. I usually don't listen to movie
soundtracks that often, but this one is so good.
40. No Man: Wild Opera -
Another great remix and package.
41. Frozen Ocean: Debut - Excellent acoustic
music with a message. Looking forward to more from them next year.
Fistful of Mercy: As I Call You Down - Excellent debut for this new side
43. The Mission: Dum - Dum Bullet - Great revisions on the back
catalog and an introduction to what might be the next step.
44. Robert Plant:
Band of Joy - Good, but not enough new material or hard rockers.
Miller: Dreamtigers - Looking to purchase more of the back catalog.
Hammer: If - Great music, but too similar to Yes.
47. Gazpacho: Missa Atropos
- Good music but the competition was much tougher this year than in 2008.
Demians: Mute - Good album.
49. The Armada: WOMadelaide - Great live album.
Still hoping to get the studio album someday on iTunes.
50. Eric Norlander:
The Galactic Collective - Excellent synth and a cool intergalactic symphony.