88.1 WKNC’s Pick of the Week 4/6
Time has seen this band shift from a pure metalcore band into prog-metal masters. Every album of theirs has shown a shift and change in not only the band’s talent, but also in their songwriting skills. This EP, while it only contains three songs, holds a wealth of material contained in them.
From beginning to end, he Parallax: Hypersleep Dialogues will take more twists and turns that 24 does in an entire season. What truly sets this album apart from the band’s previous endeavors, however, is the seamless blending of past and present elements.
We get a sense of what is to come from the start of the record as Thomas Giles ominously plays his keyboards, as if he were summoning the ferocious beast Godzilla from the depths of the ocean for “Specular Reflection.” Just as the piano crescendos into a climax, the guitars and drums kick in, pummeling you with frantic riffs and erratic blast beats.
All throughout this barrage, Giles’s vocals berate us with a harshness seen in many death metal bands. As he screams his heart out, the guitars take a gradual change from intense pummeling to a firm massaging, blending intricately with the harshness of the vocals, before breaking down completely into a serene progressive interlude.
Giles’s vocals adapt to this change as his vocals take on an ethereal aspect, seeming to float over the air, as guitars hold a sustain over a constant drum beat, that slowly builds up into a melody that would make Muse jealous.
Seamlessly transitioning from the first song, “Augment of Rebirth” sweep picks its way into BTBAM history as being quite possibly the heaviest song the band has ever written. Constant stop-go guitar riffs litter the song from beginning to end, as keyboards seem to sneak in ever so slightly, intertwining themselves with the riffs and gutteral vocals.
Seeming to draw inspiration from The Dillinger Escape Plan with regards to insanity, the band constantly switches between intense fast playing and heavy breakdowns that seem to beat into your very soul.
But true to BTBAM style, they refuse to stay constant as they inject a polka interlude reminiscent of the bards of old as they entertained kings, before merging into a polka metal fusion blasting its way through your speakers.
In what could be my favorite song written by the band, “Lunar Wilderness” encapsulates everything that makes BTBAM, well, BTBAM.
It starts off beautiful and chill before suddenly kicking in with harsh vocals and catchy guitar riff that sticks with you for the rest of the day. The vocals take on a dual aspect as they shift between gorgeous clean vocals and harsh yelling.
Known mostly for their intricacies in guitar work, the band spares no expense as they unleash solo after solo, sometimes undercutting the vocals and creating a vacuum of intensity. Suddenly, as if the heavens decided to part and spare us from this destruction, the song drops into a peaceful ending interlude, letting the listener down from the chaos.
Combining all these songs together into one long, conceptual piece, these North Carolinians show they can fuse the beauty with the brutal and the calm with the chaotic, forming a tornado that will sweep you off your feet before putting you back down.
88.1 WKNC’s Pick of the Week 10/22
By Jonathan Newman, WKNC Chainsaw Music Director
How does one define epic? I believe, in my humble opinion, that if you were to look up the word epic in the dictionary you would see a picture of Blind Guardian’s latest magnum opus, At The Edge of Time.
This album is pure magic. From the opening strings and orchestra, to the closing guitar riff, this album is absolutely flawless. All of the songs on the album are based off of fantasy stories, and it really shines through in the lyrics.
The opening song, “Sacred Worlds,” was originally in the video game Sacred 2, where you had to find the band’s instruments in a quest. They extended the song with a full orchestra intro and outro, adding more depth and character to the song. This song immediately sets the tone for the whole album and gives you an idea for what you have in store.
The next song on the album that really shines is “Tanelorn (Into The Void),” based off the series of books Eternal Champion. The song is fast, having more speed metal akin to their earlier work. The guitars drive you forward, leading you to a catchy chorus you can’t help but sing along to.
One of my personal favorites, “Curse My Name,” is based off of John Milton’s novel, The Tenure of Kings and Magistrate, where a king is killed for not fulfilling his duties. It is an epic ballad where you will sing along to every word, and even raise your fist in the air, screaming the chorus at the top of your lungs. It is one of the best tracks on the album and quite possibly the best out of their entire 20 year discography, ranking second only to “The Bard’s Song (In The Forest)”, a crowd favorite.
Another stand out track, released as a single earlier this year, was “A Voice In The Dark.” This song is a combination of all things that makes Blind Guardian special. It is a fast, speed metal type song with a catchy chorus that cannot help but make you smile as you listen to it. Try as you might to resist, you will have trouble not singing along to the chorus every time it rolls around.
The last song to make mention of is “Wheel of Time,” based off of the Wheel of Time fantasy series written by Robert Jordan. This song is very much akin to the band’s last epic song, “And Then There Was Silence.” It is bombastic with its huge chorus where the lead vocalist, Hansi Kursch, vocals are layered upon each other.
It is a fantastic way to close an album, and one that will force you to play the CD again, and again.
All of the songs on here are beautiful and composed perfectly. The orchestra added to the songs con-tribute depth that one rarely finds in CDs these days.
This band has been together for over twenty years and have grown immensely; evolving from a speed metal band, to something that defies genres. I recommend this album for anyone who loves power metal, prog metal or even just music in general.
It is a fantastic album and one I think that will be very hard to top. I will be listening to this album until I reach the edge of time.
This is the Noobhammer, and I bring you a gift from the universe! It is my interview with the Scumdog who lives in Antarctica. I am of course talking about the one and only Oderus Urungus of GWAR! Listen to us talk about bloody pits, Doctor Who, and whores.
To state the obvious, we here at WKNC love music. A lot. We also love live music. A lot. Most, if not all, of us attend many concerts and music festivals each year. What follows are lists of some of WKNC’s deejays’ favorite shows of the year. They range from national to local acts, regular shows to festivals. Some (myself included) went to so many it was hard to narrow it down to five, so we listed ten. Some lists are in numerical order, others are not. Caribou, Future Islands, and the inaugural Hopscotch Music Festival were some of the most common favorites, among dozens of other acts. Check it out:
Synthesiser Patel (Daytime/Afterhours)
- Metric @ Lollapalooza
- of Montreal @ Cat’s Cradle
DJ Mensch (Daytime)
1. The National @ Raleigh Memorial Auditorium
2. Minus The Bear @ Lincoln Theatre
3. Max Indian @ Hopscotch Music Festival
4. Broken Social Scene @ Hopscotch Music Festival
5. The Rosebuds @ Hopscotch Music Festival
May Day (Daytime)
1. Broken Social Scene @ Hopscotch Music Festival
2. Camera Obscura @ Duke Gardens
3. Surfer Blood @ Cat’s Cradle
5. OK Go @ Lincoln Theatre
DJ Mollypop (Daytime)
1. Paul McCartney @ Sprint Center (Kansas City)
2. The Weepies @ Lincoln Theatre
3. Phoenix @ Koka Booth Amphitheatre
4. Crooked Still @ Casbah
The Noobhammer (Chainsaw)
5. Boris @ Cat’s Cradle
Iris G (Daytime)
- Mumford & Sons @ 9:30 Club (Washington, D.C.)
- Ratatat @ MeetFactory (Prague)
- Active Child @ Hopscotch Music Festival
- Cassis Orange @ Duke Coffeehouse
- Veelee @ Duke Coffeehouse
- Old Bricks @ Kings
- Deerhunter @ Cat’s Cradle
Sarahnade (Daytime/Post Rock Block)
1. Trans-Siberian Orchestra @ RBC Center
3. Phoenix @ Koka Booth Amphitheatre
6. This Machine Kills Cancer benefit
DJ Ones (Daytime)
1. Phoenix @ Koka Booth Amphitheatre
2. The New Pornographers @ Memorial Hall (UNC-CH)
3. Broken Social Scene @ Hopscotch Music Festival
4. The Big Pink @ Cat’s Cradle
5. Sharon Van Etten @ Hopscotch Music Festival
DJ Hammerhead (Chainsaw)
The Blog Lady (Blog Editor/Staff Photographer)
1. The Avett Brothers @ Asheville Civic Center Arena
2. Lost In The Trees @ Cat’s Cradle
3. Mandolin Orange @ Troika Music Festival
4. The Rosebuds @ Hopscotch Music Festival
5. Chatham County Line @ Troika Music Festival
DJ Vice (Daytime)
2. Passion Pit @ The Fillmore Charlotte
3. The Avett Brothers @ Asheville Civic Center Arena
Just John (Daytime)
2. Beach House @ Cat’s Cradle
3. Every Future Islands show
4. Joanna Newsom @ Carolina Theatre
5. Ponytail @ Siren Music Festival
The Cosmic Cowboy (The Church of Bluegrass and the Truer Sound)
1. John Prine @ Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival
2. Joanna Newsom @ The National (Richmond) and Variety Playhouse (Atlanta)
4. Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy @ Borque’s Social Club (Scot, LA)
5. Charlie Louvin @ Borque’s Social Club (Scot, LA)
DJ Elly May (Daytime)
1. Delta Spirit @ Cat’s Cradle
3. Holy Ghost Tent Revival @ The Pour House
4. Minus The Bear @ Lincoln Theatre
5. Turbo Fruits @ Local 506
8. Alice In Chains @ Raleigh Memorial Auditorium
Agent Orange (Daytime)
1. Broken Social Scene @ Hopscotch Music Festival
Riff Raff (Daytime)
- Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros @ Cat’s Cradle
- Ludacris @ Reynolds Coliseum
DJ Kligz (Daytime/Local Lunch)
4. Beach House @ Cat’s Cradle
1. LCD Soundsystem @ Pitchfork Music Festival
3. The National @ Raleigh Memorial Auditorium
4. Wilco @ Durham Performing Arts Center
8. Deakin @ Hopscotch Music Festival
9. GWAR @ Lincoln Theatre
What were your favorite shows and/or music festivals of the year?
Noobhammer here again with another discussion of the table that is round. This week I have four topics to touch with the mighty Excalibur. Two of those topics are reviews of concerts I have been to recently—Boris and Cynic; the other two topics are album reviews. One, for me at least, is the long awaited Blind Guardian album At The Edge of Time, and the new Iron Maiden album, The Final Frontier. However, due to the length of these subjects, I will be dividing it into 3 segments, which will span this entire week, so look for the other two later this week. So once again, let us delve deep into my brain, which is littered with Magic: The Gathering cards, D20s, and of course dragons I wish I could train and ride. First, I’m going to give you guys a look at the least power-metal item in this entry, but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t powerful. This is of course Boris at the Cat’s Cradle.
From the moment I walked through the doors of Cat’s Cradle and took up my usual spot at the front-center of the stage, I knew that I was about to witness something special. The stage was giving off a vibe as the Sunn (O))) amps stood there gleaming in light, lowly humming, barely audible over the talking of the crowd. Soon the lights dimmed, darkening the stage, and the opening band took the stage. For the life of me, I can’t remember their name. Maybe at the old age of 22, my memory is finally starting to fade from me, but what I can remember is that they put on a great show. Two guys from the Czech Republic just rocking out, enjoying their tour.
As soon as they finished playing, no one moved from their spots as the lights came back up, and the stage techs feverishly worked to set up Boris’ drum kit and tune their instruments. The tension inside of me started to build as the workers one by one left the stage, the last one blinking a flashlight towards the back of the venue, signaling that they were ready. Almost instantly the lights dimmed, and the crowd rose as one in a roar of excitement as fog began to cover the stage. The members of Boris walked through the clouds, like the Japanese monsters they are. As they took their positions on the stage, I felt my excitement begin to boil over as I watched with anticipation.
Suddenly from out of nowhere, I felt as if I had been struck by a 747. After the initial wave of shock had passed over me, I realized that feeling was the first note of Boris playing. A low, driving hum, echoing from amps signaled the start of my journey. The high guitars notes slowly crescendoed, mixing with the bass to form a haunting melody that stirs the deepest recesses of your soul. I didn’t have time to even comprehend what was happening as Takeshia began to wail mournfully into the mike, his voice barely audible over the drone of guitars and drumming.
My mind was lost in a trance as they band continued to play. I couldn’t believe what was happening in front of me. There are only five instances I can think of in which I have been truly blown away, and left speechless by a band: Isis, Jesu, Pelican, Nine Inch Nails, and now, Boris. I have listened to many of their studio albums, Smile and Pink being two of my favorites, but they never prepared me for the live show. Not even the live albums prepared me enough for the audio onslaught against my ears and even my soul. Watching them live had me rooted to the spot, my mouth agape in wonder at the beauty and chaos in front of me. The guitars washed over one another, forming melodies within their layers.
Even their faster paced songs didn’t cause the crowd to break into a ruckus and mosh. We banged our heads, but we couldn’t move from where we were standing. Boris seemed to have cast a spell over everyone in the venue. As they played through all their songs, not once did I lose focus, become distracted, or even wish for them to end. In fact, I wanted them to continue playing well into the night. It wasn’t until they finished playing the Black Sabbath-esque “1970″ and said goodnight to us all that the spell was broken. I looked around in confusion, like so many others around me, trying to explain what I had just witnessed. When I turned back to the stage, the band had left as mysteriously as they came. Luckily I got to meet them after the show and talk to them, but when asked about the seemingly magical and entrancing effect of their show, all I got from them was a smile.
by Noobhammer on Jul.05, 2010, under Chainsaw
Hello, The Noobhammer here to give you his weekly thoughts of metal, be it new reviews, startling news, or just whatever is on his mind. This is the first post of my round table, and many of you are probably thinking, “Hey Noobhammer, this seems awfully similar to ‘Cannibal’s Corner.’” Well, it is, but it isn’t. Yes, this is an opinion blog, and we both may discuss what the other has said or written, by mine has a completely different feel to it. While Cannibal Cory’s may seem like a trip down to the basement with your good old friend Sweettooth, the homicidal clown that you love, mine is more of a gathering around a round table where we discuss magic…and dragons….yeah….
ANYWAYS! My first topic is a counterpoint to Cannibal Cory’s idea about Borknagar’s latest album, Universal.
First off, I have to disagree with my good friend Cannibal Cory. While he says that this album does not deliver the punch, I have to disagree. While the guitars may not be as intense as other black metal bands, Borknagar is not your typical black metal band. I have been listening to this band since Quintessence, and the mix of clean vocals with the harsh vocals is what really gives this band their edge. It has been four years since their acoustic album and six years since their last album proper, and this latest album is a return to form of sorts for the band. It flows very similar to their classic album Empiricism. Their music flows along the same lines as Emperor’s later work, and, as such, mixes brutality and beauty, which is what makes this album bloody fantastic. Yes, I do enjoy some of the heavier tracks, but sometimes, just like Swallow The Sun and Katatonia, the slower songs can be heavier and more brutal than the faster songs. So while this album may not appeal to everyone, fans of Emperor’s last album as well as black metal fans who love a little bit of clean vocals will love this album.
Let us continue onward with some album reviews for albums that came out this past month. Starting with Sabaton’s Coat of Arms:
Sabaton return with another album chock full of inspiring music about various battles throughout history. First off, let me say that when you first listen to this album, you will have trouble putting it down for a few days. The songs are very catchy, and the choruses just make you want to raise your fist in the air and charge along the battlefield with the soldiers who fight in the song. By far, though, the opening track is the strongest song on the album. “Coat of Arms” opens up with a synth playing softly before the drums and guitars kick in and instantly make your head bang and foot tap. There are some songs, though sad in nature, will still make you feel powerful, like “Final Solution,” which describes prisoners’ feelings as they are walking through the gates of Aushwitz. It’s hard to say how long these guys will be around for though, because there are only so many battles you can sing about, and a lot of their songs vary little. Despite this fact, they can still write catchy songs that have us hooked.
Rhapsody of Fire return with their first album in four years, and it is a return for glory for the band. After being forced to change their name due to a lawsuit, their previous album, Triumph of Agony, was a big disappointment for me, especially because I am a HUGE Rhapsody fan. This latest album showcases the guitars more than the symphony. Some may see it as a response to the big hit of Dragonforce; I see it as a return to their glory days of the emerald sword. Few bands can compose and move us as well as Rhapsody of Fire can. From the moment you here Christopher Lee (Yes, the Christopher Lee who played Sauraman in The Lord of The Rings movies) give his introduction to “the mighty, immortal warriors, RHAPSODY!” you will have a grin on your face and horns raised in the air. I won’t lie to you, I’ve had this album on repeat since I got it. It makes me want to get on the back of my epic gold dragon, unsheathe my broadsword, and ride into battle with my comrades by my side as we search for the crystal of power. It is a truly epic album, and one that all power metal fans should get. LONG LIVE RHAPSODY!!
FINALLY! The new Nevermore album, The Obsidian Conspiracy, has finally been released. It has taken them five years, and, Odin, it was rough, I almost gave up on them. However, the band surprised me by releasing, not only a new album, but one hell of a new album. Seriously, this album is nearly flawless. The guitars have taken a backseat to Warrel Dane’s vocals, but that does not mean that the guitar shredding we love from this band is gone. No, rather it means that we get a great balance of both. For the first time since Dead Heart In A Dead World, I have been able to sing along with every song on the album. The songs are short but catchy, and their hooks just sink into you, and you will be humming the choruses to the songs all day. It’s hard to explain in words how this album is, but I will say this: it is now a close contender for my album of the year, and Aealo by Rotting Christ is one hell of an album to top.
Well, that’s all I have for this week. Keep tunin’ in to Chainsaw Rock on WKNC 88.1, and be sure to prepare for the Newrockalypse this week as I will be playing songs from all the albums mentioned here. Keep the horns rising brothers and sisters.
I know it’s sad, the prospect of the end of my first year as a DJ coming to a close. But for those of you that don’t know, it is exam week this and next week, followed by that thing called summer. Summer is an exciting season, where I meet relatives and they ask me how stuff at the station goes. I tell them, and then they usually ask if I have ever actually eaten a human. Hah, the nerve!
Anyways, Chainsaw will be alive during this summer, so just because this is my last farewell for the Spring of 2010 doesn’t mean you have to stop listening in. Seriously, when people start ignoring Chainsaw, stuff like in Figure 1 starts to happen. Keep listening to your dose of Rotting Christ, old-school Dimmu Borgir, Goatwhore, Cannibal Corpse, Belphegor, and by listening to Lucretia, Mistress of Destruction‘s, show. Seriously, I may wreck the human body to splinters… er, with splinters, but she will tear down the walls of your house. Noobhammer‘s 2.0 version of his show is definitely a good tune-in as well.
For those that have been consistently reading these blog posts, I provide you with another comic! I know it’s been a while, but it’s either that or concert gore. And I figured concert gore was exciting. Now, I ran into a bit of trouble with this week’s comic and I’m sure you’ll see why. Just remember: offended people tend to have more tender meat. And everyone likes tender meat.
Question of the Week: “How could I be as cool as Noobhammer?”
“I would play Dungeons and Dragons.” -9th Priest
“I’d grab a foam sword and sing while drinking ale!” -Cannibal Cory
When I come back, I hope your limbs will have regenerated, intestines scabbed over, eyeballs re-socketed themselves, tongue stub re-grown, undisembowled, stitches sewn properly, and bones set straight all so another enjoyable round of shows can begin in the Fall of 2010!
The heavyweight band is back with their latest album, and I won’t try to sweeten any of what I have to say about Borknagar‘s latest. There are times when it really does take a knife to the intestines and lets out that nice fine ooze, but I felt that for much of the album I had to repeatedly dive headfirst into any bricks I came across. And if you didn’t know, there’s a mighty ton of bricks here at N.C. State.
I’m sure my colleague and fellow metalhead-in-crime Noobhammer wouldn’t object to calling this piece of work “progressive” in some way, but I’m not a man of labels. I just know that past Havoc and Reason, the guitars aren’t grinding my elbows to dust. Once I even took a flier from those folks on campus gathering attention for their cause by handing out dead tree pulp just so I could papercut my tongue with a pentagram
Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate how they give those cuddly-type of music people their teddy bears and skin-moisturizing lotion, and I thoroughly enjoy black metal artists, but by the end I feel like this is a softer “Aealo” from Rotting Christ. Rotting Christ delivers the rot, Borknagar does not.
Now the Amon Amarth concert this past Tuesday was quite disembowling– or satisfying in layman’s terms. The first band to play was Pandah, and they did a good job getting the crowd worked up on chewing through their own cheeks. They were a refreshing mix of deathly speed and blackened keyboard gore. Next to play was Holy Grail, remnants of 80′s speed metal both in sound and the singer’s tight pants. His shrill was fierce, and we all enjoyed the feeling of leeches feasting from within our ear canal.
Both bands’ styles, however, stood at a contrast to Týr and Amon Amarth. Their songs, based upon Nordic mythology and Scandinavian tales of viking warriors led some in the crowd to produce hammers and bash people’s skulls inside out. Many wound up with a Hammer Smashed Face.
Týr did not disappoint, playing beloveds such as By The Sword In My Hand, Hail To The Hammer, and By The Light Of The Northern Star. Their stage presence was a nice menacing beast through which many lost pints of blood, fluids, and bile. By the time Amon Amarth arrived, the concrete floor was coated with a nice slippery mix of stomach acid, disfigured severed limbs, and organs. Nothing like free food.
Amon Amarth brought quite a light show with them, causing peoples’ eyes to become hyperactive and either explode or pop out and dangle by that stretchy optic nerve. They opened with Twilight Of The Thunder God, where fans immediately lost all sense of self and began destroying each other in a mosh pit of flying gore. Johan, the singer, kept repeating between songs about how rockin’ the people of Raleigh were. If only he could see the floor, where half the crowd was scattered about.
They wound up playing many bloody songs such as Tattered Banners and Bloody Flags, The Fate Of Norns, Down The Slopes Of Death, Cry Of The Black Birds, Under The Northern Star, Live For The Kill, and Guardians Of Asgaard to just name a few. Their destructive power, the packed venue, and the madness-inducing lights created an environment where it was impossible to not headbang and give Johan the horns. I could keep on describing the concert, but instead have a look (that is, if you’ve got eyes to spare at the moment) at the concert pictures. A picture is worth a thousand words, but these blurry pictures are worth the wading through pools of excrement and gore.
Greetings metal community, the Noobhammer here with my top ten albums which smashed the gates with a hammer full of steel.
10. Trenches-The Tide Will Swallow Us Whole
This album was a complete shocker for me. Yet from the instant I popped in the cd, I knew I had something special. This cd combines the heaviness of Isis with the melody and intensity of Haste The Day. This cd mixes these two elements perfectly into an album that doesn’t disappoint and will continually surprise you and have you listening to it again.
9. Arsis-We Are The Nightmare
This album blew me away with its sheer technicality and intensity. Arsis have always been one of those bands that just shock you with their skills on their respective instruments. This cd is no exception. With a step above United In Regret production wise, Arsis shows us what they can do when they flex their muscles and release that Virginian Death Metal machine.
8. Battlelore-The Last Alliance
Can you go wrong with Lord of the Rings? The answer is no, no you cannot. Battlelore has proven this by releasing their 5th full length album based off the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. They seem to gain their stride back with this release after releasing the much softer Evernight album previous to this one.
7. The Sword-Gods of the Earth
The Sword have quickly become one of the best stoner bands to ever come out. This cd is no exception. Their best work to date showcases what The Sword do best: Black Sabbathesque riffs that hook you and lyrics that just make no sense but will have you singing along nevertheless. That is what makes this album so great, their simplicity.
6. Sabaton-The Art of War
Sabaton has made a name for themselves as a power metal band that sings about wars. This album though is a album about the art of war. It has Sun Tzu’s teachings throughout it as we hear about Rommel’s Tank Division, the deaths in the trenches during WWI. This cd is just epic with its material and depth. It also has some very catchy songs that will have you banging your head.
5. Into Eternity-The Incurable Tragedy
The opening lines of this album, “The story is over”, paint the bleak outlook this album has with its concept about a patient who has cancer. This emotionally driven cd is some of the best work Into Eternity has done to date. Stu’s voice really shines on this album as well as Tim’s guitar playing. The mature growth that this band has shown over their last few albums is amazing and makes me impatient for the next album.
4. Avantasia-The Scarecrow
Tobias Sammet’s brainchild guest musician band is one of the best things to hit the metal world with it’s rock opera story and guest singers. I kept coming back to this album alot over the year due to it’s catchy songwriting and “can’t help but make you smile” lyrics. Michael Kiske, Alice Kooper, Jorn Lande, and kai Hansen all appear on this album making it a true masterpiece and hit album.
Pyramaze rose from ashes with the great Matt Barlow on vocals bringing out Pyramaze’s true potential and showing us what we all missed when Matt Barlow left the metal world. This cd just wakes you up and smacks you in the face with powerful lyrics and music. This is truly the year of the phoenix for most bands as they rose from the ashes into the spotlight of greatness.
2. Iced Earth-The Crucible of Man:Something Wicked Part 2
This was almost my album of the year just for its sheer genius and beauty that is contained within its walls. This album showed us what Iced Earth truly is, that no matter how many members they go through they can always release a great album. This album though brought back the prodigal son, Matt Barlow back to the folds of Iced Earth. His voice just fits so natural with John Schaffer’s guitars. This showed us the true power of Iced Earth and left us wanting more.
THIS IS IT!!! MY ALBUM OF THE YEAR!!! IT IS……
1. Cynic-Traced In Air
This is it. The big enchilada. Did you really not see this coming? I mean come on I even said that it was the year of the phoenix for most bands, and Cynic is truly a phoenix. They died in ’93 with Focus and were recently reborn with Traced In Air. They have truly made a masterpiece that many will be talking about for the next fifteen years. This album can be listened to so many times, and yet you wish that there was more. That’s how good it is. It wants you to have more and just shows what a truly masterful beauty this album is that many bands could only dream of attaining. These guys deserve the album of the year for writing a true masterpiece that goes along with A Piece of Time.