So it’s time to take a look back on what was the highs and lows of the past year. It’s always hard to make up a “best of” list because it always changes depending on what mood you are in, but i think i am pretty satisfied with this list i came up with. I will start with the top-5 albums released last year. And as always there was many good albums released, some huge disappointments and some that just pass you by without making any impact what-so-ever.
5. Portrait – Crimen Laesae Majestatis Divinae
This Mercyful Fate rip-off band was one of the biggest surprises of last year, after their phenomenal debut album the singer left the band so they got a new one and released a 7″-single with this new singer… didn’t like it at all! So my hopes for this one was pretty low, guess my surprise when this sounded nothing like that single.
4. Graveyard – Hisingen Blues
If you live in Sweden you cannot have missed this band, and if you have missed em, check em out. This is old retro 70s style rock n roll. Very good album and if you get the chance see em live.
3. Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats – Blood Lust
Super hyped band wich music is influnced in the 70s psych rock. Well played, hope to hear more from them soon.
2. Anna Ternheim – The Night Visitor
Swedish singer/songwriter, it’s always a joy to hear her music i think. Talanted is one word to describe her, can wait until February to see her on tour.
1. Machine Head – Unto the Locust
I have followed this band since their debut back in 1994 and their career have had it’s high and lows, but since the 2003 album Through the Ashes of Empires the band have gone from clarity to clarity. Unto the Locust is not as good as their previus album The Blackening but it’s not that far behind.
As always there are also disappointments, and two of the biggest ones i would like to say was The Haunted’s “Unseen” and Opeth’s “Heritage”. Both bands are amongst my favourites, and both bands changed their styles radical for their 2011 releases, a style i didn’t like in any of the bands. Sure The Haunted had some cool tunes, but compared to their other releases this one fade away quite easily, when it comes to Opeth… what the fuck!? I know they are huge fans on prog-rock but this is just unlistenable crap, i have tried and tried but i can’t find any good with this album.
Another of my favourite bands also released a record that wasn’t so good, LULU, offcourse i talk about the Metallica and Lou Reed collaboration, but to say this was a disappointment i guess is the wrong choice of words because i had no expectations at all when it comes to this. I think it have a few decent moments but the sound of the album ruins it all, they sould go for a more soft sound , like the one Metallica used on Load/Re-Load or something.
Other highlights would be the books “Metalion: The Slayer Mag Diaries” wich is a huge book with all of the Slayer Magazine issues combined in one huge hardbound book. Slayer Magazine was a Norweigan fanzine wich was the first one to write about the Black Metal scene and existed from the 80s to just last year when they called it quits. Another book , only in Swedish, was the Blod, Eld, Död wich i just finnished reading, the book is about the Swedish Death/Black Metal scene, i think it was pretty okey, some chapter was not that good while other was really good.
When it comes to liveshows i saw quite a few last year (as always i try to go and see as much as i possibly can) and some favourites was Triptykon wich did their second swedish show at the House of Metal in Umeå, very good show, and offcourse i had also seen their first swedish show a year earlier wich also was intense. Other than that i saw Ghost a couple of times, they were as good live as on album. Hmmmm who else did really good shows last year? Kreator, this was actually first time i saw em, wich is strange because of how long i have been listening to em, but it was hopefully not the last time i saw em. Alice Cooper is as always a nice liveact to catch. And last but not least Marduk wich i saw a couple of times last year, best was at the Nordfest wich i was at the frontrow, intense! Is hard to remember all shows but these are some that stood out quite a bit. Shit i almost forgot, Dropkick Murphys, love em never wanted that night to end…. will hopefully see em again when they play stockholm this year.
What are your foundest music memories of 2011? Please share.
Here are some photos i take off shows from 2011