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Old 01-24-2015, 10:31 PM   #106
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I was pretty blah on that Agalloch album too and, believe it or not, I am actually a fan. Marrow of the Spirit was wonderful and The Mantle is even better.
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Old 01-24-2015, 10:35 PM   #107
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My review in the list I posted earlier is basically just about how I didn't connect with Marrow but I did with this one.

I mean, sure, "Ghosts of the Midwinter Fires" fucking rules but the rest of Marrow can't hold a candle to Serpent, let alone the band's first three albums (which I doubt they will ever top).
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Old 01-24-2015, 10:51 PM   #108
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I haven't heard the album for a minute, so forgive me if I misremembered it entirely, but I recall The Serpent sounding heavier and more traditionally metal than its predecessor, whereas Marrow was very pleasantly atmospheric and neoclassical in its approach to metal. The latter aligns more with my own taste.

I need to hear Faustian Echoes, the White EP (which I expect to love) and Pale Folklore still, then I'll start re-listening to their discography.
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Old 01-24-2015, 11:20 PM   #109
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Oh yes, Serpent is definitely more traditionally metal, you're quite right there. That said, Marrow recalled some of my favourite influences on their seriously black metal pre-Pale Folklore material and still didn't do it for me. That was the biggest surprise of the whole thing really. I guess I just found things like "Black Lake Nidstang" too drawn out, and not in the good way like "In the Shadow of Our Pale Companion" on The Mantle.

I'm sure you'll dig The White. And I didn't realise you haven't heard Pale Folklore! "She Painted Fire Across the Skyline" is my favourite Agalloch track. In early 2006 my life, insofar as music is concerned anyway, changed forever when I got Pale Folklore, Pure Reason Revolution's The Dark Third, and Anathema's Judgement all essentially together. Fuck, what a time.
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Ian McCulloch the U2 fan:
"Who buys U2 records anyway? It's just music for plumbers and bricklayers. Bono, what a slob. You'd think with all that climbing about he does, he'd look real fit and that. But he's real fat, y'know. Reminds me of a soddin' mountain goat."
"And as for Bono, he needs a colostomy bag for his mouth."

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Old 01-25-2015, 03:30 AM   #110
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Listening to Pale Folklore and just finished She Painted Fire Parts. 1-3. Astounding stuff. Wish I'd been paying attention in the early 00s so I could have supported this band at their peak (they're still pretty good though, way fucking better than the shit band Opeth has turned into).
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Old 01-25-2015, 03:35 AM   #111
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Listening to Pale Folklore and just finished She Painted Fire Parts. 1-3. Astounding stuff. Wish I'd been paying attention in the early 00s so I could have supported this band at their peak (they're still pretty good though, way fucking better than the shit band Opeth has turned into).
I had the good fortune to get into Agalloch just before they announced Ashes Against the Grain. I'd just finished the phase of listening obsessively to Pale Folklore and The Mantle and started wondering "when will they release a new album?" About a week later, Ashes was announced.

And no fucking kidding about Opeth. I'm glad Mikael Akerfeldt is still making music and enjoying himself and finding an audience, but that audience does not include me.
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Ian McCulloch the U2 fan:
"Who buys U2 records anyway? It's just music for plumbers and bricklayers. Bono, what a slob. You'd think with all that climbing about he does, he'd look real fit and that. But he's real fat, y'know. Reminds me of a soddin' mountain goat."
"And as for Bono, he needs a colostomy bag for his mouth."

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Old 01-25-2015, 03:39 AM   #112
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I need to listen to Watershed to determine precisely where the collapse occurred. Heritage and Pale Communion are so boring and derivative of first wave prog/hard psych that it hardly sounds like the same band anymore. If I want that, I'll listen to Mastodon or Blues Pills.

Present-day Opeth might be a notch more tolerable than present-day Dream Theater, but they aren't as hilarious. Opeth just got lame and generic, while Dream Theater is in full on parody mode.
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Old 01-25-2015, 03:46 AM   #113
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Yeah, in a way 1 star albums are better than 2 star albums, because the latter is just tedious and uninteresting, while the former gives you something to talk about and plenty of material for jokes. I swear I've discussed Dream Theater with people more ever since they went to shit than beforehand. Their midlife musical crisis has been a wonderful source of hilarity.

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Ian McCulloch the U2 fan:
"Who buys U2 records anyway? It's just music for plumbers and bricklayers. Bono, what a slob. You'd think with all that climbing about he does, he'd look real fit and that. But he's real fat, y'know. Reminds me of a soddin' mountain goat."
"And as for Bono, he needs a colostomy bag for his mouth."

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Old 01-25-2015, 03:50 AM   #114
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Man. I saw the video for the lead single from their last album and was appalled. Punk rock tried to stop atrocities like that from happening and failed.

As far as 2014 metal goes, Aura by Saor was my front-runner. I loved that album. Wonderful balance of intensity and atmosphere. Some very appealing Celtic influences in there as well.
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Old 01-25-2015, 03:56 AM   #115
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Suppose I should give that Saor album another run. I enjoyed it but it didn't leave a lasting impression.

For me, the great 2014 metal albums apart from Agalloch were those by Wolvhammer and Helms Alee.
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"Mediocrity is never so dangerous as when it is dressed up as sincerity." - Søren Kierkegaard

Ian McCulloch the U2 fan:
"Who buys U2 records anyway? It's just music for plumbers and bricklayers. Bono, what a slob. You'd think with all that climbing about he does, he'd look real fit and that. But he's real fat, y'know. Reminds me of a soddin' mountain goat."
"And as for Bono, he needs a colostomy bag for his mouth."

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Old 01-25-2015, 03:59 AM   #116
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You should. Perhaps it just has to hit you at the right moment.

Forgive me for not investigating metal far beyond the 2014 RYM charts, I'll have to look those albums up. The Behemoth album they were praising on there was not to my taste at all. In fact, I thought it was ass. Pallbearer was enjoyable.
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Old 01-25-2015, 04:08 AM   #117
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I do sometimes wonder if I'm parting ways with metal, because I've generally been uninterested in what's in the RYM charts - especially when some laughable power metal gets a massive first-week rating by fanboys and is then slaughtered as soon as anybody who doesn't care for dragons rates the damn thing. I find myself enjoying old favourites, discovering a handful of cool new shit, and being generally dismissive of the rest I encounter. Helms Alee is a fairly distinctive take on sludge metal (shorter tracks, three vocalists, two of whom are female, so not your usual drawn out shit with a bloke grunting), while Wolvhammer is black and sludge metal with a fairly even balance between the two.

All that said, post-metal keeps ticking the boxes for me in a big way. Heaps of great heavier instrumental stuff last year.
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Ian McCulloch the U2 fan:
"Who buys U2 records anyway? It's just music for plumbers and bricklayers. Bono, what a slob. You'd think with all that climbing about he does, he'd look real fit and that. But he's real fat, y'know. Reminds me of a soddin' mountain goat."
"And as for Bono, he needs a colostomy bag for his mouth."

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Old 01-25-2015, 04:16 AM   #118
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lol Power metal. I can honestly say that I've never heard an album in that genre, but it certainly has brought us some of the world's funniest album covers:







SOLAR CAME OUT!

The Deafheaven/Alcest brand of atmospheric black metal is where my head is at these days. I really ought to check out some Woods of Desolation (they had a record out last year that i wishlisted) and Austere.

Also, Pale Folklore ended. Loved it. Slightly less consistent and atmospheric than The Mantle, but only just. Great band.
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Old 01-25-2015, 04:21 AM   #119
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The Official B&C Best Albums of 2014 thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Axver View Post
My suspicions that my list would end up in a slightly different order if done on a different day were proven correct when I finalised my big RYM list. I'm not going to change what I've put here - once it's posted, it's posted. But in case anybody's interested, here's my big list with a fully-reviewed top 34 (because why not?), a bunch of honourable mentions, and awards for best song, best non-2014 albums I discovered last year, worst album, biggest disappointment, etc.: https://rateyourmusic.com/list/Axver...eases_of_2014/



Huh I didn't know you were particularly interested in metal - I thought your interest in heavy music focused on punk. But in other words, you didn't appreciate the interludes by Musk Ox? I quite like them, I reckon they add to the atmosphere, but I can see why other people wouldn't be so keen.
I like metal the same way I like jazz. On occasion, and usually I have to be in a particular mood for it. And then it never sticks with me, so I can never really name a top 10 bands/artists or anything, just able to point to the vague sub genres I enjoy. I could totally do without ever hearing bands like Bring Me the Horizon ever again, but sometimes I listen to Darkthrone.

I like Agalloch a lot when they sound like Scandinavian black metal and post-rock had a baby. That stuff is great, and generally I try to check out anything you mention that could be remotely similar in that vein (even though I pretty much never actually post and say I did). But those interludes do nothing for me. Not cold or dark enough.

Man, I listened to some Opeth album a couple years ago that was so unbelievably bad I was convinced that I'd mixed them up with another band (I did used to occasionally forget the difference between Opeth and Otep, but it wasn't that), and that maybe they never were good at all. No clue what happened there.
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Old 01-25-2015, 04:38 AM   #120
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Oh my god that Keldian cover.
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Ian McCulloch the U2 fan:
"Who buys U2 records anyway? It's just music for plumbers and bricklayers. Bono, what a slob. You'd think with all that climbing about he does, he'd look real fit and that. But he's real fat, y'know. Reminds me of a soddin' mountain goat."
"And as for Bono, he needs a colostomy bag for his mouth."

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