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  • 268 weeks
    Music Reviews Pt. 1-Periphery, Marissa Nadler, St. Vincent

    Hey guys and gals, trying something new here... people who might have been following me for a bit know I'm a big music nut. I like listening to, playing it, talking about it, and even writing about it. And since my fic-writing is going super-super slow, I was looking for a way to flex those writerly muscles while I wait for my muses to wake the hell up. So, I'm going to try to post reviews of

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  • 269 weeks
    R.I.P. Oderus Urungus

    For any of you who like me, are metal fans, and also with a taste for extremely juvenile humor, this is going to be sad news.

    On Sunday, Dave Brockie, also known as Oderus Urungus, founder and lead vocalist for the legendary Shock Metal band GWAR was found dead in his home in Richmond, VA. Cause at this time is not known.

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  • 281 weeks
    The Doktor's Best Albums of 2013 List (Because You Should Care About This.)

    Yep, it's that time again... you see, I have this crazy fantasy of being a music journalist in my head, and I'm totally obsessed with best-of lists, so I'm going to take advantage of my little pulpit here and share my thoughts on the year in music with the... (does quick count) Four? of you that care. Besides, if I can get just one of you to listen to a Gorguts record, then I've made the world

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    13 comments · 266 views
  • 283 weeks
    New One-Shot Up, and The State of Things.

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  • 298 weeks
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The Doktor's Best Albums of 2013 List (Because You Should Care About This.) · 4:16am Dec 29th, 2013

Yep, it's that time again... you see, I have this crazy fantasy of being a music journalist in my head, and I'm totally obsessed with best-of lists, so I'm going to take advantage of my little pulpit here and share my thoughts on the year in music with the... (does quick count) Four? of you that care. Besides, if I can get just one of you to listen to a Gorguts record, then I've made the world better. Anyway, this year overall was really solid. A few disappointments (the Intronaut record wasn't the classic I was hoping for, Periphery didn't release a record, Falling in Reverse did,) not as many absolutely groundbreaking records as 2012, but a lot of quality straight through. So without further ado...

10. Carcass - Surgical Steel: A recurring theme for this year in music seemed to be triumphant returns after long absences, and no one was gone longer than these British grand masters of Melodic Death Metal, who broke up upon releasing Swansong 1996. What's really amazing is that even though half the band lineup has changed, the end product here still sounds eerily like what they were putting out in the late nineties. Plus, Jeff Walker, Bill Steer and co. are still the undisputed masters of song titles, as seen below.
Listen- "Noncompliance to ASTM 899-12 Standard"

9. Revocation - Revocation: Sometimes it seems that the guys in metal bands are so obsessed with their grym n' brootal image, with all the black clothes and scowling that it's easy to forget that this music can (and should) be fun. Revocation have not forgotten. This super-warpspeed death-thrash lunacy is guaranteed to bring a smile to the face of even the most black-hearted metal misanthrope, and David Davidson's retro-eighties guitar heroics will cause spontaneous hair poodle-ification (yeah, that's a word) and pants-tightening.
Listen- "Scattering the Flock"

8. Clutch - Earth Rocker: I admit, this is kind of a personal pick for me, as Clutch, Lauren Faust, and myself are all are originally from Maryland, which makes this whole blog entry totally relevant to your interests. After a few albums of fine bluesy jam-rock, the band strips things down here and unleashes a furious classic hard-rock assault, sounding more focused and ferocious than they have in years. And as someone who grew up near Washington DC, I'll admit I totally geeked out when I heard the Go-Go breakdown in the middle of "DC Sound Attack." It was embarrassing, but I don't care if anyone saw, that's how good this is.
Listen- "DC Sound Attack!"

7. Cult of Luna - Vertikal: And no, this isn't a Brony-Pandering joke, as these Swedish founding fathers of Post-Metal have been around far longer than FiM has. The name really says it all on CoL's first release since 2006, as this seven-piece band of madmen build towering cyclopean soundscapes that loom over the listener, blotting out all light, before they pull them down over your head in an avalanche of metallic fury. Just listen to it in the dark, with headphones, I dare you. Metal fans often deride Post-Metal as being "Hipster Metal," but if it means I get to listen to music like this all the time, I'll just learn to love the taste of Pabst Blue Ribbon.
Listen- "Vicarious Redemption"

6. Protest the Hero - Volition: There are some bands who, while they are good bands, they never quite get over the hump and release that defining album that makes them great bands. Shadows Fall and Killswitch Engage fall into this category for me, as did this Canadian prog-metal export, especially after the disappointment of their last album, Scurrilous. I don't know if it was the fan-supported crowd-funding or having Lamb of God drum-god Chris Adler filling in behind the kit, but whatever happened, Volition has silenced all doubt and finally made me a believer. The tunes are tighter and more concise than they've been in years, and Rody Walker's vocal performance is as passionate as I've ever heard. Why did I ever doubt?
Listen- "Drumhead Trial"

5. Gorguts - Colored Sands: Yet another triumphant return with their first album since 2001, and I have to admit, I'm totally late to the party with these guys. I think I always figured that, judging from the name that these guys would be some kind of lame Cannibal Corpse or Deicide lowest-common-denominator brute-death metal band. Boy was I ever wrong- what we have here is a Technical Death Metal meisterwerk of horrifying magnitude, a swirl of suffocating chaos wound a round a lyrical theme of the troubled history of the Tibetan People and their culture (no, seriously.) Mainman Luc Lemay has brought on a veritable all-star lineup of experimental metal virtuosos to help birth this monstrosity, featuring members of Behold... the Arctopus, Dysrhythmia, and Origin. It's a daunting journey to tackle, but the rewards are great if you have... the guts (oh shut up, you loved it.)
Listen- "Colored Sands"

4. Maximum the Hormone - Yoshu Fukushu: This bunch is probably most well known to some of you for one of their songs being the theme to the anime Death Note, but even hearing that probably doesn't prepare you for the level of insanity contained within this album. Nu-Metal? Deathcore? Pop-Punk? Funk Metal? J-Pop? Yeah, it's all here. Plus, a female drummer that sings like a chipmunk huffing helium. It's the most fun japan has given us since magical schoolgirls!
Listen- "Yoshu Fukushu"

3. Steven Wilson - The Raven That Refused to Sing (And Other Stories.): Everyone wanted a new Porcupine Tree record, but with the band being on indefinite hiatus, that wasn't happening, sadly. But sometimes when you don't get what you want, you do get what you need... and we needed this. A glorious, lush, beautiful collection of modern-vintage progressive rock, performed by PT main-man/musical genius Steven Wilson, ably aided by a crack team of progressive rock and jazz-fusion wizards. All of this glorious music is held together by a sometimes creepy, sometimes poignant lyrical theme revolving around a collection of ghost stories. I'll miss Porcupine Tree while they're gone, but music like this will make the wait for their return an easy burden to bear.
Listen- "The Raven That Refused to Sing"

2. Queens of the Stone Age - ...Like Clockwork: Damn, Josh Homme, I think your clock is a little slow, seeing as I think we began anticipating this album no less than two years ago? The long wait was totally, totally worth it, though. Gone is the furious dusty desert-rock of Songs for the Deaf, replaced by a surprisingly introspective collection of wonderful songcraft. Homme has never sounded so passionate and invested in his music, and it's near-impossible not to be swept up in the dry desert winds along with him.
Listen- "If I Had a Tail"

1. The Ocean - Pelagial: This is the record that The Ocean has been working up to since Robin Staps first brought them forth from the depths (well, Germany, same thing) all those years ago. A brilliant Progressive Metal journey into the deep, combined with a journey into the depths of the human psyche as per the classic Tarkovsky art-scifi film Stalker... you really, really couldn't get more pretentious than this. But it doesn't matter, because the music is just so grand, so beautiful, and so compelling, even as it gets heavier and heavier, the deeper we go. All performers are top notch here, including much-maligned vocalist Loic Rossetti, turning in what should be a star-making performance if there's any justice. Amazingly, he wasn't even supposed to be on this record, as Staps first conceived Pelagial as an instrumental piece while Rossetti recovered from illness. We talked a bit about "Classic" records earlier, and this IS a Classic record, full stop, and you know it from the first chords.
Listen- "Mesopelagic: Into the Uncanny"

And that's all! Happy New Year, folks.
The Doktor.

Report TheDoktor · 266 views ·
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Comments ( 13 )

Another CoL fan?

Hell yeah!

And Revocation is awesome too.


An interesting selection. So many are good on the technical metal greatness, but marred with that scream vocally that just doesn't fit into dissonance or harmony with the tone of the music. So many have great voices too. But thanks for showing a few new groups.

if the screams aren't your thing, try the Protest the Hero album. Rody Walker growls a little bit, but mostly he sings, and he's great. Very theatrical.

That Cult of Luna record is outstanding, maybe the best Post-Metal album I've heard. Also in sort of the same vein, the Deafheaven record, Sunbather, that one just barely missed making this list. I agonized over giving that the tenth spot (along with the new Skeletonwitch record, and also the Svart Crown album Profane.) And if you liked the Thrashy stuff, might want to try a band called Byzantine.

Also, Luna is most metal of all ponies.

1671110 I love the disharmonic so many of these project, and the do it right. Its not noise, but builds on you. And you can do deep and dark voices, but voices can mesh badly with moh's scale in some places, and its variances are really so heavily perception based anymore, but thank you for a new one to look at. I had found these ones all too nice. If only more folks would highlight ones like this.

Happy that I was able to show you some new records! I might start doing more blog posts about music, if there's interest. It's a passion of mine.

1671121 Before my darn hd crash (that im still recovering from in terms of loss. I was near upwards of about 400gb of music, about 2 months worth.) Im a music nut, and one to find enjoyment in near every type, sans rap (not the old school stuff, the 80's stuff, early.) and country, (before it was really commercialised in a bad way. When they actually sung about real issues. The cash era.) But yeah, i hear more from blogs and places than I do over radio for good new music to follow.

I can relate. Didn't lose a hard-drive, but back before I stored all my music on computer I wrecked a vehicle, and it went up in a huge ball of fire with a CD book in it with about four or five hundred CD's in it. Funny thing was, I didn't usually tote my CD's with me, I'd just happened to been swapping music with someone. Easy come, easy go.

I listen to everything, though like you, my taste in countries shies away from the modern pop-country stuff. The only newer country I really indulge in much would be some of what critics tend to call "Alternative Country," stuff like Neko Case, The Drive-By Truckers (Southern Rock Opera is simply amazing) Kelly Hogan and the Pine Valley Cosmonauts, etc. And I don't find myself getting into much hip-hop newer than the early nineties. Been on a classical kick lately, too, chamber music mostly, like Shostakovitch (some of his stuff is scarier than any Metal.)

1671130 All new names to check out, haha! But agreed, ironically, the hd crashed in the process of backing stuff up to a secondary one I just installed. But yup, I love when you can mix two very different genre's and make something amazing out of it, or the singing of one countries tunes in another language. Sonerien Ou, though a far cry from metal, if memory serves, is a fun example of celtic songs, sung in italian, i believe.

Still, the themed albums are enjoyable, such as avantasia or symphony X does, or Running wild and their pirate themes. All the fun times of letting the music really just melt the worries away. And yeah, metal is great for showing you how good you might have it. Ah, queensryche, operation mindcrime has such the dark lyrics for it, livecrime is even better.

But nice to see you know of the Moh's scale, so many I talk to, have the 'whu?' look when I do. It saves so much time.

Oh, Mindcrime, one of my favorites... for the last few years I've had an insane idea to do a fic in the Buffy fandom that would basically be an adaption of the plot of Mindcrime, with Faith as the protagonist (right now it's in my Too Crazy to Write ideas folder along with my Teen Titans/Seven Samurai mashup.) Symphony X are kind of the inheritors to the sort of thing that Queensryche used to do, I think. I think as far as concept albums goes, though, Opeth's Still Life is probably my favorite. Opeth is pretty much my favorite everything, though, with all the crazy genre blending they do.

I'll have to check out Sonerien Ou. I do enjoy Celtic music.

There are times I love bandcamp. but Here is a lovely voiceless one thats downright enjoyable for seamless flow. A more odd story selection of types, though varied, is Julia Ecklar (and yes, its filk in places, but actually good filk) There's also Nox Arcana, and other folks for more, instrumental options (though in a sort of celtic themed vibe in places of sorts) But heh, :rainbowlaugh: I'm meandering bad being up still from last night haha. But enjoy! :twilightsheepish: And may 2014 bring you great amusement, though Savatage is a classic, and i'm always grateful I got to meet mister wochols. (and I know i likely butchered his name)

Bandcamp rocks. That's how I discovered Pelican, and their latest record is awesome.

Savatage is super classic. And it is cool to meet people like that, I got to meet Mikael Akerfeldt and Fredrick Akesson from Opeth once outside a show, and I'm amazed I didn't degenerate into some kind of music-geek siezure.

Since you were kind enough to provide music, try this. A friend turned me on to Murder By Death a few years back, and this record has become one that I can listen to anytime, anywhere.

And yes, Happy New Year (I actually kind of forgot that happened...)

1671157 Haha, thank you for brightening up a sour patch of early morning before sleep. Have a superb night/day, whenever it is, and a gift to look forward to when I wake.

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