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Your favourite new albums of 2012?

Discussion in 'Maiden Downunder' started by FerretallicA, Dec 29, 2012.

  1. FerretallicA

    FerretallicA HMAS Slagdestroyer

    Mar 23, 2005
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    Sydney, Australia
    It's that time again!

    Despite what was a pretty slow start (at least in terms of metal), 2012 has been what I think is one of the best years for new music in a long time. I can't remember ever having such a hard time picking a "top 10" because of too many killer albums to choose between.

    The only album I haven't heard yet which I expect might make this list is Saber Tiger's "Messiah Complex", but I'll wait until another distributor (hopefully) picks it up. Fuck paying $30+ let alone $50+ to import it. Since I couldn't decide a clear 10 places without it, I'll put all the 'honorable mentions' as equal 10th instead:

    Marillion Sounds That Can't Be Made
    Be'lakor Of Breath And Bone
    Kamelot Silverthorn
    Europe Bag of Bones
    Cradle of Filth The Manticore and Other Horrors
    Black Country Communion Afterglow
    Lynyrd Skynyrd Last of a Dying Breed
    Grimner Fard
    Unisonic Unisonic
    Graveyard Lights Out
    Primal Rock Rebellion Awoken Broken
    Adrenaline Mob Omertá
    The Project Hate MCMXCIX The Cadaverous Retaliation Agenda
    Psycroptic The Inherited Repression
    Napalm Death Utilitarian
    Pig Destroyer Book Burner
    Flying Colors Flying Colors
    Machinae Supremacy Rise of a Digital Nation
    To Mera Exile

    9. The Levitation Hex "The Levitation Hex"

    I still can't put my finger on what it is about their sound which is so different. There's understandably an Alchemist vibe, at times a touch of modern Amorphis, but whatever it is they're doing I love it.


    8. OSI "Fire Make Thunder"

    Whereas the albums leading up to this were a moody mix of progressive metal and ambient electronica, this one is much more atmospheric overall and lacks a lot of the aggression of its predecessors. Still a brilliant album regardless, though with different production this could just as easily have been a new Chroma Key album.

    Invisible Men:

    7. Slash "Apocalyptic Love"

    This further proves that Slash was a far more crucial element in the classic Guns N' Roses formula than Axl Rose could ever dream to be. Only a few relatively flat songs keep this from being higher on my list. After listening to this album many times over, I really hope Velvet Revolver get their shit together with Miles Kennedy on vocals.


    6. Soen "Cognitive"

    Opeth's "Damnation" meets Tool. Though I never really enjoyed the latter, Soen takes only the positive aspects from their influence and the result is something quite unique.


    5. Dethklok "Dethalbum III"

    I wasn't a big fan of the first two Dethklok albums so this one surprised me. They're not really doing anything new here, they're just doing it a lot better than before.

    Impeach God:


    4. Van Halen "A Different Kind of Truth"

    Not really a 'return to form' in my eyes as I don't think they've released a bad album in the last 30 odd years, but definitely a return to the sound which put them on the map in the first place. As much as I dislike David Lee Roth for his seemingly endless douchebaggery, it's not enough to detract from what is, end-to-end, their most solid album since "F.U.C.K.".



    3. Meshuggah "Koloss"

    If you didn't like Meshuggah before, you still won't like them this time around. For the rest of us, this is perhaps their best album to date. A well balanced mix of their classic nails-on-chalkboard sound, the mechanical groove they perfected around "Nothing" / "I", and the frantic energy from their earlier albums which is only starting to really show itself again since "ObZen".

    The Demon's Name Is Surveillance:

    Break The Bones Whose Sinews Gave It Motion:

    2. Pineapple Thief "All the Wars"

    I used to think of Pineapple Thief as a weak wanna-be clone of Porcupine Tree but with this they've really come into their own. Catchy and accessible without being overly simplistic, this is prog rock song writing of Transatlantic caliber without the ambitiousness or pretention - which is a good thing in this instance.

    Burning Pieces:

    Last Man Standing:

    1. Trollfest "Brumbelbassen"

    I absolutely loved their last album "En Kvest For Den Hellige Gral" and I don't think they've really topped it with this one but they've at least equaled it with this one, adding enough new elements to avoid sounding like a stale rehash but still retaining their distinct sound.

    Böse Tivoli:


    Other bands with new albums I've been really enjoying which come to mind but didn't make the "Top 10" cut include ZZ Top, Behold The Arctopus, Mago de Oz, Paul Gilbert, Fuck... I'm Dead, Devin Townsend Buckethead, Wintersun, Yngwie Malmsteen, Bob Katsionis, Andre Matos, Dragonforce, Blaze Bayley... the list could go on. There's so much great music coming out at the moment, here's hoping 2013 can continue the trend.

    So what DIDN'T I enjoy?

    Disappointments for 2012 were surprisingly few - or at least very few come to mind. The big one is Muse. I'm guessing they were smoking whatever Metallica smoked when they decided a Lou Reed collaboration was a good idea. The other big one was Haji's Kitchen, but only because their debut is one of my all time favourite albums and their reunion effort fell way short of that mark.

    [edit] fixed Levitation Hex link [/edit]
    #1 FerretallicA, Dec 29, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 20, 2015
  2. phlogiston

    phlogiston Bejabbers!

    Apr 13, 2001
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    I'm not going to do the list thing.

    I liked Testament's "Dark Roots of the Earth", Unisonic's "Unisonic", Anathema's "Weather Systems" and although it was last year, it was late last year so it counts, D:A:D's "DIC.NII.LAN.DAFT.ERD.ARK".
  3. Spiff

    Spiff I have the power

    Apr 14, 2001
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    Brisbane, Australia
    My favourite is Apocalyptic Love. I think it's on par with Appetite for Destruction, if not better than it. Yeah, I said it.

    Haven't listened to that many new albums, but I did like what I heard of Axe Wound's debut. Also, Delta Goodrem's Christmas EP was a highlight of the last month or so for me.
  4. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg Master Exploder

    Apr 13, 2001
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    Victoria, Australia
    My top ten off the top of my head in no particular order. Might be overlooking something, but oh well.

    Bevar Sea - Bevar Sea

    Sabbathy stoner doom from India. This four track debut album is killer.

    Paradise Lost - Tragic Idol

    I don't own the entire Paradise Lost back catalogue, but chunks of it. I enjoyed Faith Divides Us Death Unites Us a few years back, and this is another step forward. Great album.

    Accept - Stalingrad

    Have had this on the 'to listen to' pile for months and only gave it the first spin last week. Holy shit. This is a monster of an album from a band that many people probably thought were down and out years ago. It sounds like a Euro-metal Painkiller...relentless.

    Troldhaugen - Ramshackle

    Whilst I really love their debut EP to death, the follow up debut album from these guys from Wollongong is a pretty unique body of work. You would struggle to find any band out there making music like this, let alone in Australia, so hats off to em, even if I am a bit disappointed in the straying away from the folk of their EP.

    Katatonia - Dead End Kings

    I'm not sure how this album sits in relation to their other work (that is also kinda how I feel about their previous effort), but I know that I enjoy it.

    Grinspoon - Black Rabbits

    I'm a big Grinspoon fan. This album is quite poppy and feels like it could be more of a Phil solo album perhaps, so it could be seen as disappointing, but the songs are really quite strong.

    Air - Le Voyage Dans La Lune

    French ambient electro duo make their take on the soundtrack to the classic French film. I really enjoy Air's music, and the surprise here was that the soundtrack isn't as ambient as I was expecting at all. Still haven't watched the bonus DVD with the music set to the actual film. Might do today.

    Baroness - Yellow and Green

    I liked what I had heard from Baroness previously, and enjoyed seeing them support Metallica a couple of years back, but had never been grabbed by what they were doing and felt a need to check them out further. Yellow and Green gave me that extra jolt, and now I would call myself a Baroness fan. Good stuff.

    Cold Divide - Weaponized

    Three track EP from Melbourne based dark electro rockers. If you were to combine this bands two EPs and two internet singles to make an album, it would probably be my favourite Australian album of all time. They seem intent in only releasing short bursts of music here and there though, so I will just have to live with it. Amazing band.

    Vessel - Introspective

    For obvious reasons.


    Honourable mentions go to:

    Halestorm for The Strange Case Of... which is a pretty ripping album. These guys were awesome at Download in June. I will give them more time in the future.

    Cradle of Filth for The Manticore and other Horrors. I need to spend a little more time with this one, but already I can tell that it is a stronger album than their previous. I don't think they will return to the magic of yore, but their is some good songs here.

    Muse, because I quite enjoyed The 2nd Law despite being another step down from their previous heights.

    Marilyn Manson, as Born Villain is a much stronger album than most people expected it to be. A few really good tracks on there, and I'm sure others will grow on me with repeat listening.

    I gave Soundgarden's new one a spin last week and it sounded pretty strong, and have read glowing reviews of it too. Might go back to it when I feel like it.

    I'm yet to listen to new ones from Testament and Kreator, both of which could easily make the list from the positive reviews they have been getting. I also really enjoyed Primal Rock Rebellion while listening to them on Spotify, but haven't picked up the album yet. I have a list of a few other things to check out as well, so my top albums might change in coming weeks.

    Disappointment for the year was Steve Harris - British Lion. I don't think it is a bad album, and I kinda enjoy it while listening to it, but it didn't excite me too much at all. For something that was so long in the making, I expected more. If the album was simply titled "Steve Harris' British Lion", it would have made much more sense, as in, Steve Harris endorses this band, rather than labelling it as a solo album. Meh.
  5. Lord Tim

    Lord Tim That guy from LORD

    Apr 13, 2001
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    Wollongong, Australia
    I'm always rubbish at these sort of lists 'cos I'm either recording someone else or caught up in our own stuff to fully pay attention to anything. I will say however that I've had some incredible bands through the studio once again this year (See above! Good luck with Vessel, man! :) ) and I'd have to say that the band that made me stop and go "woah, this is amazing" was Troldhaugen. The amount of thought they put into the layering and orchestration before it even got to the studio was impressive as fuck and I reckon they've come up with something that will set benchmarks in Australian heavy music if they keep at it.
  6. Spiff

    Spiff I have the power

    Apr 14, 2001
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    Brisbane, Australia
    Forgot one, and it's a great one - "3 Pears" by Dwight Yoakam. Also saw him in November after 24 years of waiting and he was great.
  7. Southy

    Southy Proud Brisbane Metaller

    Jul 28, 2001
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    I can never remember what has been released in a month let alone a week, but from what I can think of from here and what I am still listening too, here goes something small

    Napalm Death - Utilitarian
    Testament - Dark Roots...
    The Acacia Strain - Death is the only Mortal
    Gallows - S/T
    The Gaslight Anthem - Handwritten
    Whitechapel - S/T

    That is all I can think of, although I bet there is a shit load more
  8. KoichCPA

    KoichCPA Banned

    Oct 15, 2001
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    Converge - All we love we leave behind
    Baroness - Y&G
    Anathema - Weather Systems
    Pig Destoyer - Book Burner
    Meshuggah- Koloss
    Torche- Harmonicraft
    Old Man Gloom - NO
    Swans- The Seer
    Maximo Park - The National Health
    Frank Ocean - Channel Orange

    or thereabouts.

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