Monday, December 22, 2014

Arson Awards 2014: Top 100 metal albums [Part I]

Dividing the list into four pieces, including artwork and links, is always better than a long text list. Maybe it's less likely to completely ignore the albums too, but I've never gone down that path, really. Once again, 2014 left us with a fuckload of music and you never have the time to listen to everything, so for this year I will not include any worst album lists and the likes so that i'll stick to being positive. It's all great, everything's great. Don't forget to autistically knock your head over a wall while listening to each and every one of these records, as a token of appreciation for me doing the same thing all year now just to compile this list.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Arson Awards 2014: Top 12 non-metal albums

It felt wiser to seperate the metal from the non metal albums this time, even though I like keeping year lists with all kinds of music at the end of the day. There were more albums from which I enjoyed a couple of tracks only and these didn't make it to the finals, I hope you already know there are countless more amazing records than twelve for this year. Each one has their favourites:

12. This Will Destroy You - Another Language
Genre: Post-Rock

One of the bands that introduced me to this genre released another great record. Atmospheric, laid back and warm, with some excellent compositions like "Dustism", "The Puritan" and "Mother Opiate".

11. Bassnectar - Noise VS Beauty
Genre: Electronic / Experimental / Dubstep
Listen [1] [2] [3]

I'm really into the style of this producer more than anything else I've come across in EDM, mainly because of his eccentric, colourful and artistic approach to the craft of music.

10. sleepmakeswaves - Love of Cartography
Genre: Post-Rock

The essential band that led me into post-rock. Maybe I was really lucky because them and This Will Destroy You released albums this year. Love of Cartography deserves all the joy you can spend on it.

9. Wovenhand - Reftactory Obdurate
Genre: Indie / Alternative Country

I had no idea about this until I found a Youtube link with the whole album. I shouldn't introduce these guys to anyone, only gonna say their music hasn't lost it's strength.

8. Nadja - Queller
Genre: Drone / Shoegaze

This whole record is amazing, an aural journey into immaterial landscapes. Maybe the closest to metal in this list, even though they have reduced such elements in Queller. Beware of the thick guitars though!

7. Worm Is Green - To Them We Are Only Shadows
Genre: Electronic / Ambient / Trip-Hop

I didn't know this band and gave it a listen because of it's name and album title. It was the first tracks that moved me and it's after all a spectacular effort.

6. Tuomas Holopainen - The Life and Times of Scrooge
Genre: Atmospheric Rock
Listen [1] [2] [3]

I have explained here how close to the core of my heart this stuff resides. Majestic music and one of the best concept albums ever. Oh, and look at this picture.

5. I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness - Dust
Genre: Indie Rock / Post-Punk

I had completely forgotten about this band and didn't know about a new record. I used to give them often and several spins some years ago and the new album turns out to be even better than their early material.

4. Bob Mould - Beauty and Ruin
Genre: Alternative Rock

A veteran rocker that jams with more heart than most artists in his area today. I get a feel like Bob Mould is an unsung hero but anyway. Flawless album, all tracks great.

3. Musk Ox - Woodfall
Genre: Chamber Folk

Came around listening to this after a suggestion from Don Anderson of Agalloch and it turns out to be magnificent. This band has classical guitars, violins, cellos and it is the definition of beauty.

2. Lethe - When Dreams Become Nightmares
Genre: Avantgarde / Electronic / Trip-Hop

When Dreams Become Nightmares might be the first record I listened for 2014 and by then I knew it would be a good year. Lethe is a project of Tor-Helge Skei from Manes and Anna Murphy, who sings in Eluveitie. The two musicians created an album beyond reckoning. Anna's ethereal vocals fill your lungs with euphoria and the smart electronic compositions of the duo are pure awesomeness. Recommended for every person on the planet.

1. Villagers of Ioannina City - Riza
Genre: Stoner / Folk Rock [Ηπειρόκ]

This band has attracted huge attention within the borders of the country. Even if you don't understand Greek, ckeck out Riza for it has a truly addictive sound. Villagers of Ioannina City took traditional Greek songs and fused them with strong Tool elements and traditional instruments, it seems like it is the recipe to success.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Arson Awards 2014: Top 12 EPs

I know I've been around here a lot less than I used to, but I'll keep coming back every year for this shit, for sure. I've moved my reviewing thoughts and general music updating to a webzine named Metal Invader, and that might explain something. Anyway, off we go!


12. Baths - Ocean Death
Genre: Minimal / Electronica / Glitch

11. Mormoan - Empyreal Wisdom
 Genre: Funeral Ambient / Dungeon Synth

10. Trepalium - Voodoo Moonshine
Genre: Swing Death Metal / Jazz

9. Mournful Congregation - Concrescence of the Sophia
Genre: Funeral Doom Metal

8. Vermin Womb - Permanence
Genre: Grindcore / Death Metal

7. Kever - Eon of Cycling Death
Genre: Death Metal

6. Vuyvr - Incinerated Gods
Genre: Black Metal

5. Satariel - White Ink: Chapter 1
Genre: Melodic Death Metal

4. Inter Arma - The Cavern
Genre: Black Metal / Sludge / Post-Metal

3. Svartidauði - The Synthesis of Whore and Beast
Genre: Black Metal

2. Worsen - Blood
Genre: Black Metal

1. Skelethal - Deathmanicvs Revelation
Genre: Old School Death Metal