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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2012, #6 – #4

MetalCatBe glad you don’t live on the Planet of the Dolphins or in any other sub-aquatic civilisation. You can’t do chemisty, make fire or smelt metals under water. It would probably be even more difficult in salt water. I should imagine it would also be quite a bugger trying not electrocute yourself with a big amp.

On Water Planet there is no music except for The Whale Glee Club and the Coral Crackers.


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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2010, #12 – #9

MetalCatMy choices today are mostly dark and deep except for Pathfinder, which is about 1.5 seconds above us at the speed of light.

I don’t want to visit the Moon. All that dust would make me sneeze. Nor do I need to visit any other planetary or lunar bodies in our solar system. I’ll wait for an advanced civilisation to invite me to visit their world where they destroyed AutoTune as soon as it was invented.


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Mik’s Top 100 Favourite Albums of All Time #35-31

Top100A while ago, at the same time as Matt and Reggie, I posted my Top 100 All Time Favourite (Metal) Albums over at the forum The History of Metal on FB. It took a good amount of time and effort to put it together, but it was so much fun! My taste in metal is always changing, so the list will not always look the same. In fact, it’s already a bit different than it was when I first put it together and posted it on the forum seven months ago.

I tried to limit myself to three albums per band to make the list a little more diverse and interesting. I don’t really consider the ‘test of time’-factor when selecting what albums that will go on my list, instead I measure it by how strongly the album has affected me emotionally and how much/often it has helped me through both good and bad phases in my life. That’s why you can find quite a few newer releases among my favourites too.


#35 Omnium Gatherum – New World Shadows

Accessible and infectious, but still tastefully complex with a modern feeling. I like the versatility of this album, it’s good if you need positive energy, it’s heavy and powerful enough to headbang to, at the same time it’s relaxing, works for sing along when you want to practice your growling skills, it’s quite family friendly, perfect for private air-guitar performances and beautiful enough to keep you company on cold winter nights. What more can you ask for?


#34 Lantlôs – .neon

Post rock mixed with black metal is one of the best combinations of musical styles. Add a dose of jazz, intense emotional singing and some proggy elements and you have Lantlôs. Their music makes me close my eyes and completely lose track of time. The album has an unusual dark, flowing feeling to it that makes every song a pleasure to listen to. To me, this is an atmospheric masterpiece where the music perfectly pictures the album’s lyrical theme.


#33 Finntroll- Visor om Slutet

The most beautiful troll album ever. I love every second of it and every sound, from the frog’s “ribbit”, the trolls gnarling while sharpening their knives and the owls howling. It’s not a typical Finntroll album and it’s partly what makes it so good; this is more atmospheric, full of emotions with many instrumental parts and nature-related sound effects. It’s dedicated to Somnium, a band member that passed away, and they really managed to create something unique for him.


#32 Alcest – Les Voyages De L’Âme

Because the music juuust floooows and wanders in such a nice, wonderful pace throughout the whole album. It’s so smooth and seamless. I barely notice when a track ends and a new begins, or the pause between the songs. This is one long, extremely beautiful listening experience that takes me away to another me(n)tal dimension and makes me relax completely. An album to daydream to.


#31 Watain – Sworn To The Dark

I don’t care about Watain’s dark and super-evil image and everything that comes with it. I simply like the music because of the awesome, detailed and powerful sound. This is not recorded in a deep forest in the middle of nowhere! It has the typical raw black metal atmosphere, but you can actually hear every instrument being played, which I appreciate. You can find a bit of Dissection and a small dose of Bathory here and there, but Watain has their own recognizable style and to me they are one of the very best black metal bands out there.


Album Review: Gris – À l’âme Enflamée, l’äme Constélle


Release Date: July 9, 2013

Tracks: 10

Length: 80 minutes, 2 discs

Genre: Atmospheric depressive black metal (with many acoustic parts)

Previous releases: Neurasthénie, 2006 (under the name Niflheim), Il Était Une Forêt…, 2007

Recommended for fans of:  Alcest, Agalloch, Sombres Forêts, Drudkh, Lantlôs, Forgotten Tomb

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The 12 Days of Metalmas: Day 3: Three French Bands

8903537-french-flag-on-a-diamond-metal-textureOn the 3rd day of Metalmas my true love gave to me
Three French bands
Two headless doves
and an Opeth in a pear tree.

Gojira, Alcest, and Uneven Structure are all from France and play some damn great metal.

Gojira know for their poly-rhythmic and percussive style of instrumentation have really broadened and expanded on what can be done in technical metal and also have added tons of heart into their music both from their instruments and also in their environmentally charged lyrics.

Alcest are an interesting beast. To some they may not even be considered metal and that is where their genius shows through. Taking elements of metal that don’t accentuate aggression or brutality they use many of the more beautiful and somber elements of the genre to create some of the best post-metal out there today.

Newcomers Uneven Structure are one of the pioneering bands really pushing the envelope of the whole ‘djent’ craze by injecting elements of ambient music into their pulsing and hard-hitting sound marrying beauty and aggression.