Philip R. Anderson

Reviews 5
Approval 66%

Album Ratings 53
Objectivity 62%

Last Active 04-03-19 2:50 pm
Joined 03-27-19

Forum Posts 1
Review Comments 36

01.05.20 Our band tracklist09.29.19 First week of autumn- my weekly playlis
08.16.19 Stuff I bought vol. 5- Birthday Edition08.07.19 My life in records
07.06.19 Stuff I bought volume 405.31.19 Stuff I bought No. 2 (+3)
05.10.19 Polish music you might not heard of05.05.19 Stuff I bought No. 01
04.11.19 BLS ranked- an objective take on the su03.29.19 Top Ten Records- A Subjective Selection

BLS ranked- an objective take on the subject

Black Label Society are mocked for their wannabe-southern appearance, and often very flat, unoriginal music with an overdose of pinch harmonics, topped with vocals that sometimes sound like Ozzy having a stroke. But I love them- this could mainly to the fact that every BLS album is linked somehow to some period in my life. Everything that could be said about them has been already said, but I feel that I need to get this list out of my system- therefore it's all about quenching my needs. I don't think anybody reads or gives a fuck about descriptions (including this one), but I do lists mainly to practice writing about albums, as I don't find making a ranking list without descriptions much sense- in the end, who really cares about what order you think albums should be? I tried to rank the albums in an objective manner though, but feel free to throw a tantrum in the comments. PS. Deliberately left out live albums and compilations/ cover albums (Skullage and Song remains not the same).
1Black Label Society
Stronger Than Death

Normally, the sophomore effort of a band is considered to be a difficult thing to bulls eye. In this case, the debut was more of a sketch book of (good) ideas, and it is on Stronger than Death that the band managed to define their production (clarity) and compositions.
2Black Label Society
1919 Eternal

Despite the fact that this record sounds like one long song that just marches on, there is some sort of quality to the whole album. It's very uniform, but in a good way, despite the fact that the production sounds slightly muddy in comparison to the previous one.
3Black Label Society
Sonic Brew

The first album is, as mentioned before, more of sketch-book, full of southern ideas. Not an example of what consistency should look like, this is a Frankenstein of an recording, glued together and patched up. Despite this, I really like this album, for that very reason- it's just very colorful, unlike the mono-colored other two albums.
4Black Label Society
The Blessed Hellride

This piece of art is, a very radio-friendly product, but in the good sense. The production is much smoother, and the songs themselves represent a much more organized fashion. Zakk edges dangerously to Ozzy in his singing, and even invites him to sing in one song. As a teenager, when this came out, I didn't even notice at first that there's Ozzy on one song, I was certain that it was the main man singing. Nevertheless, I started off with this album.
5Black Label Society
Grimmest Hits

Relatively new, this album shows Zakk finally and completely out of the dark period of BLS. He had a slope, then a few albums followed which showed him gradually leaving the slope behind him, and this disc represents a new quality to BLS. Much more blues and a return to certain southern features, I found this album a very, very good come back. It really is the definition of what BLS is about- monotonous, but in a good way.
6Black Label Society
Catacombs of the Black Vatican

This is the album which breathed faith into many of the fans- BLS are practically back on their feet. At first, I found it a bit boring, but after a few listens, it dawned on me that this is actually very good. Slightly muddy though, in the sense that it seems slow and gritty, as if they told Zakk to record an album, whether he likes it or not.
7Black Label Society
Hangover Music Vol.6

The guys definitely needed a breath of fresh air from all that southern metal playing. Their musical minds must have been like stuffy rooms, and this album must have been like opening the windows and letting some air in. You just can't keep riding the rocket, you must crash in the end. This album is good, no doubt about it, but you tend to get the impression that, although they're good at it, acoustic playing tends to make themselves the happiest, and others are just there to listen. A bit like Zakk's 15 minute solos on concerts- he's the one that has the most entertainment from it, which is a bit of a masturbatory effort.
8Black Label Society
Order Of The Black

This album is at the low end,. simply because it didn't leave much impression on me. I listened to it a bunch of times, but can't really remember much more than Crazy Horse and Godspeed Hellbound, which, from what I can recall, are rather mediocre, non-passionate, slightly tired BLS songs, trying to dress up as 1919 eternal songs, but don't really have the cojones to be like them. It still isn't a BAD album, and is a faint light of hope on the horizon after the slump that BLS reached 4-5 years before.
9Black Label Society

Mafia is often highly ranked in many reviews, and I know many people like the album. I myself find many interesting ideas on it, but as a whole, it's a bit tiring. The vocals on it are full-blown Ozzy, the tunes, albeit catchy, are rather bland. A ballad barely making it past the cheesy line (in this river- if you watch it with the video clip, it fails to pass the line), a couple of pointless songs (electric hellfire is one, for example). The album is, all in all, a set of short songs, meant to be radio friendly, but it just flopped. You can see that they needed a break...
10Black Label Society
Shot to Hell

... but they just kept going, and the result of this is Shot to hell. If you produce an album which isn't top-notch and sound tired, you don't just record one more and publish it one year later. Once again, we have a set of songs, where 2/13 only exceed 4 minutes. I'm not saying that the length of a song determines the quality of the album, but here (and on Mafia), it's seems that they just jammed together for a few minutes, threw in a few ideas, and said ''ok, this goes onto the album''. Normally bands have 20 songs prepared for an album and eliminate them down. Here, I have a feeling that they thought ''shit, have to get an album done and we have 0 songs and a week left''. Despite all that, certain songs from this were a good listen when the album came out, and I was a 16 year old.
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