Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

Notable Mentions 2021

All of this were close to being in the Top 10 list.

Architects – For Those That Wish To Exist

I’ve heard the name but never really listened.

And they started to come into my life circa 2018 with the “Holy Hell” album, which I liked some songs on, but when “For Those That Wish To Exist” came out in 2021, I was liking a lot more songs.

I was even half way through a review, before I got side tracked with other posts and never went back to finish.

It’s album number 9 which goes to show that artists will never know which album makes a person a fan. They just need to be in the game, a lifer, producing music.

If charts still matter these days, then this album did great business around the world, hitting the number 1 position in Australia and the UK, while achieving Top 10 positions in Austria, Germany, Scotland, Sweden, Switzerland and the Billboard Hard Rock Charts.

While the band was known as a metalcore act when they started out, this album is not. It’s a stadium rock album with elements of all different kinds of metal thrown in and orchestral electronics.

Lord – Undercovers

An Aussie Metal band.

How can you knock back a covers album that has metal re-imaginings of songs like “To the Moon and Back” from Savage Garden, “Message In A Bottle” from The Police, “Playing to Win” from Little River Band/John Farnham. “(I Just) Died in Your Arms” from Cutting Crew, “The Sun Always Shines on TV” from A-ha, “On a Night Like This” from Kylie Minogue, “Break the Ice” from John Farnham, “Send Me an Angel” from Real Life and “Touch the Fire” from Icehouse.

And to top it off there are sizzling metal and rock covers of “Hard to Love” from Harem Scarem, “Reckless” from Judas Priest, “Wild Child” from W.A.S.P and “Runaway” from Bon Jovi.

Plus faithful renditions of “Judas be my Guide” from Iron Maiden, “Of Sins and Shadows” from Symphony X, “Shattered” by Pantera, “Someone’s Crying” and “I Want Out” from Helloween, “Creeping Death” by Metallica, “Silent Jealousy” from X Japan and “The Whisper” from Queensryche.

You can read my review here.

Chevelle – Niratias

Otherwise known as “Nothing Is Real And This Is A Simulation” and it’s one of their best albums in the last 10 years, a concept album that deals with interstellar travel, mistrust in leadership, loss and looking back at the past.

It’s more accessible then some of their previous works, with bigger Chorus’s.

Plus there is some great artwork from Boris Vallejo.

Iron Maiden – Senjetsu

It’s great to have Iron Maiden in our lives. The album is a bit bloated but then again, Maiden from the 2000’s onwards have done things their own way and catered to their own creative muses. Which I respect and still purchase.

You can read my review here.

The End Machine – Phase II

The End Machine is listed as a supergroup consisting of guitar player George Lynch, bass player Jeff Pilson, drummer Mick Brown and singer Robert Mason.

Frontiers basically wanted a Dokken sounding album and with 75% of the band being from Dokken plus a singer who worked with Lynch in Lynch Mob, the possibilities of a Dokken sounding album were high.

The self-titled debut came out in 2019 and in 2021, “Phase 2” came out. The difference here was that Mick Brown vacated his drumming gig due to his retirement and his younger brother, Steve Brown took the spot.

I also had a review partially written on this however other posts took my interest and I never went back to it.

But it did have comments like, “’this song reminds me of <insert Dokken song here>.

For example, “Dark Divide” is “The Hunter”. “Blood And Money” reminds me of “Tooth And Nail”. “Crack The Sky” has this “Stop Fighting Love” meets “It’s Not Love” vibe.

And to tell you the truth, I wouldn’t have it any other way, because while Dokken is on hiatus for new music, The End Machine definitely fills the void and Mason’s pipes are in fine form, while Mr Don is struggling a bit.

So if you like classic Dokken, then do yourself a favour and press play on this.

Standard
A to Z of Making It, Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

Spotify’s New Metal Tracks

I thought I would try out Spotify’s “New Metal Tracks” discovery feature as I was in the mood to sample something different as I was getting the shits with Spotify’s recommendations algorithm. I am a fan of the service but they still have a lot of work to do, especially around new releases from artists I follow. Maybe they don’t promote those artists, because they promote the acts that pay for it. Because there is a lot of shit/noise in their discovery features.

Anyway, lets start with a few selections;

DYNAZTY
Titanic Mass

I was blown away that this was their fourth album in six years. Another Swedish band that has made it to my favourites. The drum groove reminds me of “The Fire Still Burns” in the chorus. It’s fucking brilliant.

Then that harmony riff  kicks in before the solo section and its a cross between Iron Maiden and Helloween. Again fucking brilliant.

“Fire, flames, fury”

ARCHITECTS
Gone With The Wind

It’s like Killswitch Engage with keyboards. I dig.

Do you remember when you said to me, “My friend, hope is a prison.”?

RISING DARK
Plague

Very early Metallica meets Slayer with a bit of power metal. Brilliant. Vocally, the singer is a cross between Chuck Billy and Tom Araya.

Virus spreads, infects the nations
Only cure: extermination
Parasites wiped out of sight
Without mercy, only pride

Plague spreads
We disinfest

CULT OF LUNA
A Greater Call

I heard some music from them years back, however it just failed to stick. But not this time. The mood at the start of the song and how it just builds and builds for the full 8 minutes is pretty full on.

The piece d’resistance is those ethereal backing voices under the harshness of the death metal screams.

We leave. Upward, toward new dreams
A new hope. An odyssey
Underneath. The world left behind
Is dying as we escape gravity

IHSAHN
Disassembled

Musically Ihsahn is brilliant. Anything goes in his songs. Listen to this song. The riffs are prog like, arena like, hard rock like, metal like and the vocals are black metallish and arenarish and etheralish. So many different moods and grooves packaged in a 5 minute song.

A shattered soul presented
Like a disassembled gun
Assassins rushing up the stairs
All allies on the run

HELLYEAH
Human

As much as it pains me to say it, but losing Mudvayne guitarist Greg Tribbett (who formed Audiotopsy after leaving) was the best thing that happened to Hellyeah. They sound more focused and re-energised. And Chad’s lyrics are as always brilliant.

KATATONIA
Old Heart Falls

This is another band that I heard many years ago and no impression was made on me to revisit them again, but man, this song, I love it. It’s got this vibe and groove that is progressive, rock, metal and a Clint Eastwood Western all rolled into one.

Standard