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Reggie’s Essential 25 Favorite Instrumentals #6 & #5

bc_rich_widow_wmd_bass_top_imageI love the power of a good instrumental song.  Sometimes they can be energizing or even relaxing depending on the band’s intent with the song.  Some bands use an instrumental song to display a different, sometimes softer side.  And, sometimes an instrumental is a collection of left over riffs and drum parts that didn’t make the final cut.  Or, perhaps they just couldn’t find the words to go with the music.  However they are composed, the instrumental song is a track I look for and hope to find on any album; though there are some bands where it’s almost an expectation.  This list is 25 word-less songs that I find essential to my music library.  I wouldn’t sweat over the exact order, but yeah the ones at or near the top of this list are definitely my favorites.  I know there are many more instrumental songs out there, but these are mine…so to speak.  This list is also limited to only three per band and only one band made this list three times.  Enjoy!

6.  The Ultimatum – Jeff Loomis

It wasn’t until fairly recently I became familiar with Loomis’s solo career.  I imagine watching a video like the one below would inspire many budding shredders to shred even harder.  This song rides on his ability to play solos for an extended amount of time.  Seeing is believing; this is a really cool play-through video.  Enjoy!

5.  Cosmic Sea – Death

Death opened the door for death metal in my world.  It was when I saw the video for Lack of Comprehension off the Human album (same album where Cosmic Sea appears) that I realized just how technical and heavy death metal could be.  Up to that point, I thought that genre had no discernible rhythm.  From there it spread to other bands and before I knew it I developed quite a fondness for death metal in general from the brutal to the technical to the groovy as long as it has some kind of identifiable structure to it.  It has to be more than just growls and blast beats.

Reggie’s Top 15 of 2012

2012Just when I thought 2011 was a banner year for metal, I think 2012 might be equal to or better in terms of both quality music and sheer volume of albums released.  It surely was not a dull moment if you ask me; it seemed like I was listening to at least a couple new albums each week.  Interestingly, I can probably look at half my list and tell you that some of these albums, I had no idea were coming.  They completely snuck on me or I never expected them like Kreator…a band I nearly forgot about came out with a killer album.  The band at #15 I never knew existed until just a few weeks ago and I am still impressed with them.  There are definitely some surprises on my list this year.  Some of these bands have been around for years and I am only now getting into them. I hope you had a great 2012 in metal!  Here are my Top 15 albums of 2012.

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Theme Thursday – Reggie’s Top 5 of 2012 So Far

We are at the time of year to reflect upon at what albums really made an impression on me – it’s time for the mid-year best of list.  We are half way through a pretty amazing year as far as metal is concerned.  Quite a few veteran bands out there released some stellar music…with one New Jersey band topping my list so far.   One thing I love about blogging with fellow metalheads is that we all love metal equally, but definitely have a fondness for different subgenres.  Both Matt’s and Mark’s lists are great and unique and give me something to listen to…some of that stuff I haven’t heard yet.  I hope I can offer the same in return.   Here is my Top 5 list for mid-year 2012.

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Album Review: Jeff Loomis – Plains of Oblivion

Plains of Oblivion is the latest album by guitar virtuoso Jeff Loomis.  Although Jeff has released other self-titled guitar-driven albums, this is the first one since the (kind of) disbanding of Nevermore.  The new album is 10 high-octane tracks covering about 47-minutes.  My experience listening to Jeff Loomis’ solo albums is minimal, but it didn’t take me long into Plains of Oblivion to hear where the brunt of influence in Nevermore came from.  That’s not to say Plains of Oblivion is sounds like Nevermore without vocals, but that Jeff’s style is rather unique and prominent in his old band; it’s easily recognizable.  Ok, maybe it does sound a little like you are listening to Nevermore, but is that really a bad thing?

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Song of the Week – Requiem For The Living

I don’t have much of Jeff Loomis’s solo works. He is a great guitarist and was the reason I got into Nevermore. Unfortunately, Nevermore called it quits, but we still get to hear Jeff Loomis’s crafty work on his latest album, Plains of Oblivion due out in April. Normally, the song of the week is the first random song played first thing in the morning. I make exceptions for the promotion of new music. If there is something new out, I love to share it with you in case you haven’t had a chance to see it yet. This is where Jeff’s first track comes in. Here is his newest song Requiem for the Living.

Song of the Day- 4 March 2011, JATO Unit

Happy Friday Everyone,

Today’s SOTD is by someone for which I have a great deal of admiration and respect.  Of course, it helps that this talented musician is from one of my favorite bands, and is so metal that it spills over into his solo album. 

I think I posted a SOTD from this guy before, but I don’t remember when or what is was.  No matter.  It’s all metal!

The Song of the Day for 4 March 2011 is “JATO Unit” by Jeff Loomis, from the album Zero Order Phase.

Sometimes when a musician breaks away from their respective band, it can cause problems in the band.  This is not the case.  If anything, this has made me like Nevermore all the more, since the band is open to letting their members pursue other options.  Warrel Dane has done it with a solo album, and Jeff Loomis has as well.  I think the drummer Van Williams also has a side project called PureSweetHell.  I heard that a while back, but I am not sure it is still true.  If anyone wants to do some research and get back to me on this, I’ll give you some metal state cash, which is basically respect. 

Have a great metal weekend, damned ones.

Album of the Week- 30 Oct 2010

My pick for album of the week this week is “Praises to the War Machine” by Warrel Dane, released in April, 2008.  This is a great album from the Nevermore frontman.  I am usually pretty leery about albums that are off-shoots of one of the band members, but this is a solid album.  I am biased towards the album because Warrell Dane is one of my favorite vocalists, but the whole album is very good.  There are a few notable guest musicians on the album, namely Peter Wichers (Soilwork), Jeff Loomis (Nevermore), and Chris Broderick (Megadeth). 

There are two cover tunes on the album:  “Lucretia My Reflection”, originally by The Sisters of Mercy, and “Patterns”, originally by Paul Simon.  These two songs alone are worth buying the whole album, in my opinion.  But the rest of the album is put together very well.  The songs are not as heavy as Nevermore, but they are still pretty heavy.  I think it is a great that the songs don’t sounds like Nevermore songs, because there would be no need for a solo album. 

If you are looking for a solid metal album, this is a safe bet.

That is post number 50!  Hell Yeah!  Thanks for tuning in.

Have a great weekend.