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4-Star+ Albums of 2014: Nameless One / Marmor / Slipknot / Destroying Divinity / Starbynary

SealAnd still they come, all those beautiful albums we simply didn’t have time to review properly in 2014. A music reviewer for a European site told me they received 2,700 requests for metal album reviews during the year. Even with a battalion of reviewers it would be difficult to keep up with everything, and which metal fan would have time to read all those reviews and listen to all those albums?

I have been picking out some of the very good albums I missed. Without going into detail about any of these five, I will confidently say they all would have been worthy inclusions on my Best of 2014 list. Accordingly they all receive the Elephant Seal of Approval. By the way, his stage name is Putrid Seal of the Apocalypse.


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Mik’s Top 50 – Intros That Instantly Grab My Attention #47-48

Here’s a list where you only have to listen to the first 30 seconds of the songs to know what I’m talking about!

#48 Overkill – Come And Get It

Overkill is not my style of metal, but this thrashy intro is awesome. The fact that it’s also the opening song of the album ‘The Electric Age’ from 2012, makes it even better, what a good, crushing, shredding, storming start of an album!

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Video(s) of the Week – Download 2013 Headliners

In seems uncharacteristically early to announce headliners for the UK’s famed Download Festival for 2013.  The event is still 10 months away and the promoters have already booked the three headliners.  Based on what I have seen, I would buy a ticket already, but the hardest part would be for which day.  I am not in a position to disappear for the entire three-day event; therefore picking one day would be tough.  In 2013, I would do the weekend if I could because all three headliners are quality acts.  So, without further dela, I will let the videos do the talking.  They are in order from top down – Friday, Saturday, Sunday.  This is already shaping up to be a tremendous June 2013 weekend.


Theme Thursday – Bands I Want To See Live

Other than listening to metal, one of my other favorite things to do is going to live shows and listen to it at ear-numbing decibel levels.  Being 39 and having a job has given me ample time and decent resources to see shows wherever I have lived at that moment in time.  Location has also been a huge factor.  Growing up near Boston, MA and living in San Antonio, TX, Northern California, and England has made things much easier to catch my favorite bands.  For that, I am very thankful yet, some bands still elude me.  I have managed to catch Megadeth 14 times, Slayer 10 times, and Dream Theater 5 times, plus many others multiple times, but for some reason others have slipped away; some by no fault other than my own.  This list is of bands I have yet to see live and still want to see live very much. If you have seen these bands live and think I shouldn’t go, let me know.

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Reggie’s Top 100 Favorite Albums of All Time #80-76

Continuing on with our Top 100 list at The History of Metal, I bring you my next five with a little bit of justification.  If you haven’t checked out The History of Metal or THOM as we call it, please do it’s a cool forum to talk about and share metal.  The page creator does a great job as keeping topics fresh and he also takes the time to pose challenges to the group; Top 100 Albums being one of them.  I think the best part of this whole challenge besides getting to see everyone else’s choices is to reminisce about why I love these albums so much.  It gets me listening to some of these I haven’t heard in a while.  Not to mention, seeing everyone elses favorites gets me to explore some things I haven’t heard yet.  Enjoy!

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Theme Thursday – Drumming

The heavy metal drummer is the official timekeeper of the band.  Often taking a back seat (literally) to the glitz and glam of the lead singer and guitarists, the drummer has perhaps the most difficult job…especially in metal.  First of all, they have to use all four limbs in rapid succession.  They must also use said limbs in an orderly fashion of some sort both of which require countless hours of practice and dedication.  An indirect benefit of being a drummer is that they get to A.  Sit down on the job and B. get a cardio-intense workout while sitting down on the job.

I wanted to take a Theme Thursday and focus some time and energy on the dude (or chick) sitting at the back of the stage somewhat perched up higher than the rest of the band.  Some drummers are well known for their drumming while others just drum and that’s cool too.  Some metal drummers have made a name for themselves in the business  so I wanted to take some time to recognize them, but also note some drummers that you may have not heard of that deserve some recognition.

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Theme Thursday – For Those Who Rocked…

On July 11th, 2001 Slipknot headlined the (Sunday) last day of Sonisphere, UK.  What made this particular event so special was it marked Slipknot’s first live appearance since the death of bassist Paul Gray.  This got me thinking of bands that have lost band members.  In particular, it got me thinking about what happens to the band when a musician dies.  Sometimes, the band moves on and sometimes it is the end complete.

This theme Thursday is a tribute to those who rocked, but unfortunately met their demise way too early in life.  I wanted to take a few minutes to remember their contributions to metal and share them with A Metal State of Mind readers.  I can’t possibly list them all so if I missed one of your favorite rockers please let us know about their accomplishments in the comments box.

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Song of the Week- Do Nothing/Bitchslap

When Slipknot first hit the scene they caught my interest after seeing them at Ozzfest.  I eventually purchased their first album, and while it had a bunch of cool songs on it, there were songs that just didn’t do it for me, but the album showed great potential for the band.  Then they released their second album Iowa, and while it was far from perfect, it showed musical growth within the band and seemed to be a precursor for great things to come.  Then the third album, Vol. 3: (The Subliminal Verses), happened and all my hopes for Slipknot went out the window.  Over the years I’ve gone back and listened to their back catalog again along with their fourth album All Hope is Gone and with the exception of Iowa they really don’t anything for me today.

But before their first major debut they had an album recorded called Mate, Feed, Kill, Repeat with a slightly different line-up.  It consisted mainly of older versions of songs that were eventually reworked for their later releases, but there were a couple tracks that were original to MFKR.  One of those songs that stuck out too me was a little track called “Do Nothing/Bitchslap”.  It was this crazy little death metal/funk combo and for how random and disjointed it is, it’s a blast to listen to.  Check it out.  Oh Slipknot what you could have been.

Theme Thursday – A Decade of Thrash

What is your opinion of the standard thrash recipe?  Do you think thrash as become weak over the years, stayed the same, got better, or a little bit of everything?  Does thrash make you want to puke or snap your fingers…snap your neck?  The theme for this week is going to focus on thrash from 2001-2010.  Not so much the bands themselves, but the songs that define the music.  I will cover the last 10 years with a few words on what’s out in 2011 already. Part II of this theme is that all the songs I talk about fit onto one CD-R.  If you like the tunes I picked it makes for a great mix.  I  will let the playlist do the talking and by all means feel free to comment.

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Sonisphere Festival Update

The final artist list for Sonisphere is complete and they have finally offered day tickets.  You would think that would bring joy to my life, but this is not so much the case.  If you have been following this blog you know that the Big Four is making an appearance at Sonisphere U.K. which is only about 45 minutes from my house.  I have been looking forward to this opportunity and have been patiently waiting for day tickets to go on sale.  Well, today the announcement was made, but with a twist.  They will be holding a ticket eligibility “lottery’ of sorts.  I had to go in and register for which day or days I want to see and then on May 25th I will find out if I have been selected to be allowed to purchase a day ticket.  And if I am lucky enough to get selected to spend 80 pounds for a day pass, they will tell me which day I can go to.

So I chose Friday July 8th because that is the day of the Big Four and I also chose the Sunday the 10th show which features Slipknot headlining and also Opeth, Arch Enemy, and Motorhead; all of which I have never seen live before.  So I MIGHT get lucky and see the Big Four or the other day or I might get shit-nothing.

Whatever happened to first come, first serve?!  I have been looking at that website every day for months now for word on single day passes.  I almost want to boycott the festival and go to Download instead and scream at Linkin Park out of spite.

Well whatever, if I get selected to purchase a ticket I will just let the chips fall where they may because if I get to go I win with either one of those days.  Either I see my favorite bands all in one day or I see other bands I like for the first time.  If I get selected it’s a win win.  If I do not get selected I will technically be a loser and I will be sore about it and you will be the first to hear about it on May 25th.  Stay tuned I might need a shoulder to cry on.  Here are some videos of all the bands metioned inthis article, except Linkin Park.

So what would you do?  Here is the link to the Sonisphere site.

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