…And now on the most defining post of my blog.
As I mentioned in my previous post, I have decided to expand my Top 10 list into a Top 20 list in order to truly capture the excellent quality of this year’s releases. Musically speaking, I personally view 2015 as being, in almost all aspects, better than 2014. While some genres fared better than others, it’s hard to escape from the undeniable fact that it was a major year for music both in Metal and beyond.
In many ways, these records have helped me push through this insanely difficult year. I’ve experienced things I never thought I would experience so soon, and my social situation has took a turn for the better. While there were a few mess-ups (including my lack of guitar practice smh), 2015 has been an year to remember, and right now the only thing I fear would be the release of the IB results next January. I hope I do well enough to get into Cambridge (I can dream). Eventually, I ended up emotionally connecting with a diverse platter of albums and organizing this list wasn’t really that easy, even though I’ve been keeping such a list since the start of the year.
Due to the sheer length of a Top 20, I’ll split it into 2 posts, and this post will cover #20 to #11. And without further ado, let’s commence!
#20: Moksha – My Sleeping Karma (Psychedelic/Progressive Rock)
Kudos to My Sleeping Karma for creating one of the best study albums of the year. While there are strange turns in this album, it has a charm that’s hard to find, and the resultant entrancement proves to be quite an experience. This is an interesting album well worth at least one listen, and it’s unique enough for me to listen to it again and again.
#19: Space 1992: Rise of the Chaos Wizards – Gloryhammer (Symphonic Power Metal)
This is a fun album, and what’s more is there to say? If sheer nonsense was transferred to a digital form, sent to Asgard, chopped up and read as music, that would make no sense, and neither does this album. I had no idea where I was going with that, but that doesn’t matter. This album, though, does.
#18: Disciples of the Sun – Pyramaze (Progressive Power Metal)
I’ve already covered this album in greater detail in my AiF, so I won’t say much here. This album is fresh and interesting but could use greater variety. A personal bias towards the Sun (lol i m sungod) makes this album interesting in a comical way. Definitely worth listening to.
#17: That’s the Spirit – Bring Me The Horizon (Alternative Metal)
I have mixed feelings about this album. The departure from their Metalcore style which made Sempiternal so amazing really saddened me. In its place is a style that’s not as listenable. But a good band remains a good band, and the parts that work well work really dang well. Doomed and Throne are personal favorites. Yes, there are parts that make me cringe, but these parts echo my teenage troubles, and that, I do not mind.
#16: V – Scale the Summit (Progressive Metal)
It seems as if those dinosaurs from the cover of The Migration have finally found a home and evolved into God knows what. Although not as strong as their previous offering, this album is great, and hence ensures that the genre of Instrumental Progressive Metal stays alive and filled with good material.
#15: Bloom – Caligula’s Horse (Progressive Metal)
I haven’t been listening to this album that often until this month, and that probably explains the low position on my list. This is a record that I loved from the first listen (as will the rest beyond this), and the style of prog played is amazing honestly. This album has helped me restore faith in new prog (not that it was gone to begin with).
#14: The Book of Souls – Iron Maiden (Heavy Metal)
This album was great, and I can’t lie. But it wasn’t as great as I initially thought it to be after a few listens. In the same month, there was another album that I personally enjoyed much more than this, and that made me think hard about exactly how good this album was. That being said, this is a Maiden album, and hence, it does have a standard high enough to be kept on this list.
#13: Beyond the Red Mirror – Blind Guardian (Power Metal)
This was the second solid release I’ve heard this year, and well, it’s solid. Despite suffering from slight production problems, this album is engaging from start to finish, and is undeniably epic. Many of the songs are long, but I don’t see that as a problem. In fact, the greater and more ambitious construction of the songs captivates me even more.
#12: This Ruined World – Trials (Thrash Metal)
How on earth is this band still unsigned? This album is the best Thrash album I’ve heard in a long long while (read: since 2012). Truth Defiled is a great song, and a similar standard is maintained throughout the entire album. This album is worth repeating on bandcamp, and most agree.
#11: Secret Garden – Angra (Progressive Power Metal)
This was the first solid record that I heard this year. Is it as good as my all-time favorite album Temple of Shadows? No, of course not. But it’s most definitely the best album since then, and I’m happy to announce that Angra is back. Although the production sounds a bit techno-ish and modern (like many new prog bands), the songwriting is great and really stands out. Unfortunately, I didn’t anticipate the quality of 2015’s releases, and hence my previous prediction of this record being in the Top 10 was wrong. Oh well. Still a gr9 record.
And now the next post shall be my personal top 10 of the year. ‘Til then!