Average Rating: 3.18
Rating Variance: 0.93
Objectivity Score: 93% (Very Balanced)
Sort by: Rating | Release Date | Rating Date | Name5.0 classicAvantasia GhostlightsThis album still acts as a peak of Tobias' creativity. Every song is crafted in such a way to perfectly compliment the featuring vocalist and the guest musicians. From the bass-y vocals on "Draconian Love" to the 'Classic Kiske' pseudo-soprano melodies on the title track and "Wake Up To The Moon" (which also has an absolutely killer string line). All of the tracks are accompanied by a blast of orchestral sounds and the classic power metal shredding that put Tobias and his various groups on the map.It is a masterpiece.
Four Years Later this opinion still stands
Favorite Track: Wake Up to the MoonC418 Volume AlphaAn overdose in Nostalgic simple piano soundscapes amplified by occasional percussion instrumentation and soft complimentary synths. A true masterclass in Video Game Ambiance. rFavorite Track: "Clark" and "Moog City"Casualties of Cool Casualties of CoolWhile the singing is really pretty, and particularly shines on moments like the gorgeous "Flight", "The Code" and "Moon" the real highlight for myself were the moments in between these peaks. Where the album's soundscape opens into a foreboding mournful cacophony. "Hedja" with its native tinged instrumental, "Pier" with its repetitive rumbling percussion and "Deathscope" which drops out like a panic attack and floats through its cold bitter space to its ending. Fantastic album. Devin Townsend EmpathNah, that's it, I'm 5'ing this. The production is top fucking notch, the mix of metal, symphonic, and electronic is electric and the performances all around are superb. Every track has that one moment that makes me go "fuck this is so good". Classic albumElectric Light Orchestra A New World RecordWHOO ARE YOOOU AND WHOO AM IIIII Goddamn I love this album. Especially that title track.Electric Light Orchestra Eldorado Another album I slept on for far too long. Sublime mix of rock and orchestra from beginning to end.
Whenever Jeff belts "I will STAAAAAAAAYYYYY" I feel that in my soul.Jerry Goldsmith The MummyGoldsmith's finest.Moby PlayWhy does this thing sound so fresh still? And at nearly an hour and 18 tracks it does not feel overlong? Impressive as hell.Pink Floyd The WallWhile I believe the mixes on the film version is overall better than the album mixes, I still can't help but admit the power this album gives off. Sure there maybe there is one or two tracks that drag the album a bit longer then needed (The Show Must Go On), but that doesn't stop the strengths where they lay. The three-way punch of "Nobody Home", "Vera" and "Bring the Boys Back Home" is nothing short of fantastic. The climax, "The Trial" is of course the perfect culmination of everything the album was building to. And the reprise of "In The Flesh" serves as yet another fantastic recontextualized moment whose commentary on the rise of facism and the willing audience it attracts bites even harder than it did in '79. While the film completes the picture and concept that the album sets up, the album is stlll a fantastic experiences. Queen A Night at the OperaThe first half of what I consider the Queen "double-album" Night at the Opera and Day at the Races. Bombast is put on max here with multi-layerd vocals and theatricals all around this album. Sure this album does trip a bit more than A Day at the Races (the pointless last song) but it does it it is on part with A Day at the Races and usually surpasses it in some places.Radiohead Kid AA big grower album. Hated it at first, but after a few more listens I began to realize exactly how genius the album is. Melancholy apocalyptic music at its finest. Sergei Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3 in D minor, Op. 30Rachmaninoff's addicting collaboration of technicality and melody makes from his best Concerto and one of the most satisfying in its category. Soundtrack (Video Game) Sonic the Hedgehog CD Original Soundtrack 20th AnnThe Killers Pressure MachineFuck me. A bold uncompromising look at rural and cultural rot. Romanticizing the darkness of living in a town wrapped in decay. Families not understanding what is happening in their homes until it is too obvious to ignore. The darkness of the chilling and blunt "Desperate Things" the gorgeous "Quiet Town" with its harmonica / piano solo and the title track with the jaw dropping fiddle. Just a really fucking good album. Better than ITM? Honestly, yes.
Edit: 8-9-23. About 2 years on from this album's release and I think it gets better over time even. 'Quiet Town', one of the album's center pieces, is one of the most ingenious tracks Brandon and co has ever penned. The effortless lyrics divulging blind acceptance of tragedy under the guise of something greater while the upbeat melodies keep the facade in place. You almost forget just how dim it is, and that is the point. The usage of interviews too adds so much depth to every stop on the journey. This is one of those albums where you feel every emotion. 4.5 superb100 Gecs 10,000 gecsHaving never touched a 100 Gecs project this was pretty shocking to say the least. Once overstimulation subsided I realized.. hey this is pretty fuckin good! The 27 minutes feels breezy, not a second too short or long. The production is fantastic, blending in a metric ton of bizarre samples elevated by the equally as strange compositions. 'The Most Wanted Person...' sounds like a cartoon breakdown as the wacky sound effects contrast with the relatively dark subjects. It works even? Even the more off the wall tracks like 'Billy Knows Jane' (with its brutal outro) and 'One Million Dollar's work in spite of their purposely unrefined presentation. Absolute peak highlight is 'Doritos & Fritos' with its pumping drum beat, glitchy riff and general pop punk delivery. The whole package comes together nicely. If this is Zoomer music, then we're in good hands. Angelo Badalamenti Twin PeaksOne of the very best soundtracks the world of television has to offer. It perfectly captures the weird, odd world of Twin Peaks and excels at being entertaining even without the show itself. Angelo Badalamenti Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With MeAfter having seen the film this music takes a whole new meaning. The Phony-Uplifting "The Voice of Love" the short but eerie "The Black Dog Runs at Night" and the sleazy, chunky "The Pink Room" make up the film's most memorable sequences. That is of course not even mentioning the comforting "The Pine Float" and the gorgeous "Sycamore Trees" featuring a fantastic vocal performance by Jimmy Scott. This whole soundtrack is great, even if some tracks feel as if they drag only a tad. Avantasia The Mystery Of TimeIn recent times this has been getting the most play out of their Discography for me. It's tight 10 tracks leave no room for bloat and even with it clocking in at a longer 60 minutes, the length feels perfect. The album easily shines best when it allows the orchestra to take hold, like on opener "Spectres", "Savior in the Clockwork" and the nmulti-section bombastic closer "The Great Mystery" but beyond that the album's hooks are some of Tobi's best. "Where Clock Hands Freeze" is a relatively brief 4:30 with the best Kiske performance on an Avantasia record and some of Tobi's best melodies, period. Shoutout also to "What's Left of Me" which is a gorgeous ballad that has the album's themes of time and personal introspection reach an absolute peak. Superb experience. Beast In Black From Hell With LovePower metal meets 80s pop. Something I never knew I wanted.Ben Folds Rockin' The SuburbsSuch a satisfying album. The way each song has pianos that arpeggiate and interject within the melodies is fantastic. And, goddamn, the actual music is so much fun. They can be bouncy and upbeat (Zak and Sara, The Ascent of Stan) or they can be slow and melancholic but equally as great, (The Luckiest, Fred Jones Pt 2). Ben does it all and comes out on top.Bonnie Tyler Secret Dreams And Forbidden FireJim Steinman's production bring Bonnie Tyler up to her peak. Fantastic song writing across the board, super cheesy 80s production, it is everything I love about over-ambitious 80s pop all wrapped up into one superb record. Dadahack Tap3A criminally underrated percussive minimalist electronic project. From the bombastic swelling opening track, to the gloriously addictive bloopy Burnt Fox and Pattern Recognition this album has a dreary cloudy vibe and sets its flow excellently. The final track ends with a sweeping organic string section which swoops and bends before fading out subtly, much like Dadahack themselves. Shame nothing else came from them, as this album shows a mastery in creative a dreary dreamy mood that keeps the listener entranced. Daft Punk DiscoveryA superb blend of samples and arrangements making for Daft Punk's most electric release. Devin Townsend LightworkThe first half of this album is superb. Second half starts to lose direction just a bit, but ends
on a satisfying closing track. The one two punch of Equinox and Call of the Void is euphoric and
brings the most emotional moments of the album. Dimensions's frantic climax explodes as the
symphonic intro to Celestial Signals takes over focus gliding listeners into the last section of
the project. Opener Moonpeople is another highlight with its chunky bass groove and a tasty dry
drum beat topped with Devin's floaty yet irresistibly catchy vocals. While not as consistently
superb as Empath, Lightwork continues down the same general direction with more than enough to
Okay but really how has this man done 25+ albums and *STILL* hitting the studio with fresh ideas?
On further review this thing gets better with each listen. Even some of the weirder tracks like
"Heartbreaker" and "Heavy Burden" are irresistibly memorable with their Devy quirks that are
undeniably frantic and fun. Diablo Swing Orchestra Pandora's PinataStarts off catchy but a bit underwhelming... but then once Black Box Messiah hits the album goes from banger to banger to banger. Particular favorites are "Honey Trap Aftermath", "Exit Strategy of a Wrecking Ball" and "Black Box Messiah" The last minute of "Justice for Saint Mary" is some of the most bonkers sound design I've heard in a while. Great stuffDJ Shadow The Mountain Will FallA bold experimental effort that goes from having percussive lead drops ("Three Ralphs") to more traditional modern hip hop ("Nobody Speak") and even a full blown lounge jazz piece ("Ashes to Oceans"). At times it can be musical whiplash, however it never feels out of place enough to scoff. Don Broco Amazing ThingsSuch a fascinating record, it really grips its teeth into you and doesn't let up. The tighter focus and cohesion on the record lets the tracks breathe within their context and less between the whiplash of styles. Don Broco are at their best when they contrast more realistic in the moment themes of humanity and the growing social discontent to the absurd and satirical. This is seen in tracks like 'Manchester Super Reds...' and 'Uber', which both initially hook the listener with funny surface level concepts and chunky riffs, but on deeper inspection there is way more to digest. At times it leans harder into the darker straight faced side which works consistently well, like on the magnificent 'One True Prince', but it knows what to take seriously at face value and when to just go off the wall like on 'Bruce Willis'. Fantastic album. Dream Theater Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes from a MemoryIts cheesy and over indulgent, but damn do they sell it. The album's finest hour is when the group goes onto these massive instrumental set pieces. "The Dance of Eternity" being the epitome of this style. It's great, but not completely perfect. Electric Light Orchestra TimeA Perfectly crafted collection of some of the tightest pop-rock songs from the 80sElectric Light Orchestra Face the MusicA superb mix of the prog rock elements of their earlier work and the pop tendencies that would dominate their discography from here on out. For every pop hit like "Evil Woman" or "Strange Magic" you get moments of experimental production beauty on tracks like "Fire on High" and the masterful closing track "One Summer Dream". Foxy Shazam Foxy ShazamDitching the more "metal-ish" aspects of their previous two releases. Instead we get a much more
easy going and bombastic approach which is not too dissimilar to Queen's later albums. Catchy,
fun, and fantastically produced it is a rock-pop album that will definitely be remembered for
years to come. Oh and the vocal performance is blisteringly good every lyrics is delivered with
such passion and emotion that puts everything into a league of its ownGorillaz Demon DaysThe production on this thing is wickedly smooth, helps that the song writing is also quite good. I See Stars TreehouseA sublimely produced and performed album filled with rich ice-y melodies that pack such a hard punch that it'll keep listeners coming back for more.Matt Borck Shadows of the MoonA lovingly personal effort that doesn't overstay its welcome. Meat Loaf Bat Out of HellSteinman and Mr. Loaf team up for one of the best symphonic rock projects of all time. Muse The ResistanceEasily the best production on a Muse album, and the classical styled writing really gives a new depth to many of the tracks. Some people dislike it, but it sounds so damn good. Muse Black Holes & RevelationsThere is not a bad track here. From the beauty of Starlight to the crunch of Map of the Problématique, and even the Spanish tinged final few tracks... it all works incredibly well.Nine Inch Nails The Downward SpiralTDS has not aged a day. It still sounds fantastic and has deep enough compositions to be picked apart day after day and continue to find new instrumental elements stashed away deep within. Nine Inch Nails Year ZeroThis album is filled with disgusting production. Distortion fills the air as stuttering snares and white noise filled the soundscape.... but that production works incredibly well in the grand scheme of the album, and Reznor as usual does it with grace. Nine Inch Nails The FragileTakes what The Downward Spiral did and expands it giving listeners a wider industrial pallet and a much much longer runtime. Queen A Day at the RacesQueen continues their foray into theatrical rock with an equally as solid album.Radiohead In RainbowsI do not know if I have heard production that sounds this fresh before. The gorgeous soundscapes of the intoxicating "Reckoner", the subtle chunky bass of "All I Need", and to the osculating strings of the drop-dead-gorgeous "Nude". This album still sounds brand new. The song writing does wane and grow during the album, with some tracks clearly being stronger than others, but generally it is a comfortable listen with production that is to die for. Self Breakfast With GirlsThis album is one of the most "grower" albums I've listened to. The first time I hated it, second time I liked it, third time I loved it, and the fourth time I absolutely adored it. Perfectly paced, varied, lyrically great, and flows perfectly from song to song. rThe Fratellis Costello MusicWhy did it take me so long to understand this album? Absolute banger from start to finish. There are definitely tracks that are better than others but its all fun and catchy as hellThe Fratellis Here We StandGets better with every listen. While it's not as in your face as Costello Music, the writing is more mature and interesting with some really unique sounding ideas.. like the twangy "Stragglers Moon" and the explosive "Milk and Money"The Killers Imploding the MirageIt's been a while since I've been so moved by an album. But hey, they pulled it off here. The climax of My God is probably my favorite musical moment of the year. The weight has been lifted indeed. U2 The Joshua TreeUnderworld DRIFT Series 1 Sampler EditionThis is sublime. From the gorgeous arps and pads of "Listen to their No" so the somber experimental soundscapes of "Brilliant Yes That Would Be" this sampler picks what I think are some of the project's best moments and condenses them down into a superb hour long album. There are some personal favorites that are missed. The disgusting distortion of "One True Piano..." and the thirteen minute "Another Silent Way" 'suite' are missed. Weezer OK HumanCan every Weezer album have a string section? This was so good. 4.0 excellentAngelo Badalamenti Twin Peaks: Music From Season 2 And MoreNot quite as consistent as the first Season's soundtrack, but the best here is on par with the best of the first season. "Half Heart" is drop dead gorgeous with that fantastic sax melody. Anna von Hausswolff All Thoughts FlySacro Bosco is one of the most foreboding unnerving pieces of music I've heard this year. And that album art is terrifying! What a unique surprise this was to randomly stumble uponAvantasia The Wicked SymphonyAvantasia MoonglowPassing 3 years since its release, Moonglow might still not beat its older brother Ghostlights as the best Avantasia album, but it sure does try. The lyrics, while still that classic Sammet-glish of utter nonsense has continuous moments of beauty (see the opening track's showstopping bridge). Similarly, the epic 11 minute The Raven Child serves as the compositional highlight, never stopping for a moment releasing every ounce of energy. Weak ending (a cover? why?) aside, Moonglow is better than it was on release, a step below Tobi's best but several above everyone else. Leave it to Tobias to squeeze a memorable performance out of every goddamn vocalist he can gather. Its a celebration of the genre above all else. Avantasia Lost in Space Part IIAyreon The Human EquationBattle Tapes FormWith a new album seemingly on the way I revisited this. I think the strongest tracks are still quite strong, with the opener and closer both bookending the EP with a perfect blend of crunchy electronic freakouts and smooth driving grooves. 'Control' is another highlight with probably the best hook out of the remaining 3 tracks. Saying that the middle 3 tracks are not bad by any stretch and are entertaining, but just don't hit the absurd highs of the opening and closer. Ben Folds So ThereBilly Idol The Roadside EP"Bitter Taste" is absolutely sublime! Billy Idol's vocals have never sounded better then they have here. The rest is good too, great even, but Bitter Taste is really something special. Billy Joel An Innocent ManTaking keys from the Doo Whop filled 50s, Billy Joel returns to his childhood to give us some of his most wholesome material in his entire catalog. Blind Guardian Legacy of the Dark LandsI still very much enjoy this. The production is god-fuckin-awful. Should have gotten Sascha Paeth since he clearly knows how to produce an orchestra in a metal setting. The compositions however are strong, every track has a moment that strikes the listener, from the catchy as hell coda on In the Red Dwarf's Tower to the absolute disgustingly distorted explosion on In the Underworld (which works, even more with its broken production). Might miss the chugging a bit, but it works regardless. Bon Jovi CrossroadThis is worth it for Always alone... what an absolutely stellar track.Boston BostonCake Fashion NuggetCake Comfort EagleEasily Cake's most addictive release. The opening trumpet melody on "Opera Singer" shows listeners what to expect. While there are some strange choices in terms of mixing on the title track, the rest of the album remains rock solid. "Love You Madly", "Shadow Stabbing", "Short Skirt / Long Jacket" and the title track are all fantastic.Crush 40 The Best of Crush 40Crywolf SkeletonsA drab, cold, and depressing EP that shows Crywolf at his most vulnerable. Moments of heart wrenching anguish (Fuse (Liminal)) and synth filled percussive wonder (Quantum Immortality) fill the EP's long 37 Minute run time, but yet it never feels overlong. Daft Punk Random Access MemoriesThis album goes to some really insane places, and I love itrDanny Brown Atrocity ExhibitionSome of the best hip-hop production I've ever heard. "Ain't It Funny" and "Golddust" both are hard afDeadmau5 Where's the Drop?A fantastically performed collection of Joel's more emotional tracks. While at times it does seem to bleed together, one can not deny the intense amount of orchestral beauty that pokes through on most of the tracks. death's dynamic shroud Heavy Black HeartA superb album that takes the formula of vaporwave and twists it on its head giving the listener a surprisingly cinematic experience. From the catchy upbeat hooks of "Life Should Be Easy", to the sub-bass infested "You At Night" and the playful "South God Queen". Each track never overstays it's welcome, shedding the album of its stereotypical Vaporwave skin and allowing it to stand on its own. Devin Townsend Nightwork4ing this for Precious Sardine alone. Other stuff is great too, with Yogi being another highlight. But NOTHING compares to the utter off the wall technicolor insanity that unfolds in that tracks first 5 minutes.Devin Townsend Project DeconstructionDevin's stab at Symphonic Metal is fantastic. Opener 'Praise the Lowered' with its industrial esque opening right down to its massive climax. 'Juular' is another fantastic track with an addictive hook that includes an incredible appearance by Ihsahn who competes perfectly in a call and response with Devin's softer verse vocals. 'The Might Mastrubator' has arguably the most off the wall writing on the project, with it shifting from a showtune to a weird electronic beat which sounds like something from Terraria, not that I am complaining. Weirdly addictive, and thoroughly entertainingDevin Townsend Project AddictedDiablo Swing Orchestra Sing-Along Songs for the Damned & DeliriousDiablo Swing Orchestra Swagger and Stroll Down the Rabbit HoleThe songwriting is like Pandora's Pinata on more-crack, every bizarre choice dialed up to 10. And this is a good thing, takes a lot to make me smile on first listen and I was smirking the entire time. Although, the mixing here is downright atrocious, which is a shame. Everything sounds so muddy and pointlessly bass-y, it gets fatiguing to listen to in all honesty. War Painted Valentine, Speed Dating an Arsonist, Malign Monologues, Out Came the Hummingbirds, and Snake Oil Baptism are my favorites
Update 7-11-22: A few weeks after the album released they uploaded a studio video on Instagram playing a completely different mix of "Speed Dating an Arsonist" and it sounds substantially better and entirely different from the album mix. What happened??Dire Straits Making MoviesDJ Shadow The Mountain Has FallenDJ Shadow Live In Manchester: The Mountain Has Fallen TourThis isn't your typical live album, instead of playing the vanilla tracks, DJ Shadow takes a unique approach and mixes all sorts of his tracks together to one huge Best Of Set filled with all sorts of new details.Dream Theater The AstonishingThis album has a bad stigma around it. Partially deserved. The lyrics and story are at best inoffensive background noise to at worst cringe. There are production errors too, one particular nasty one on "A Tempting Offer" "...To Deeci-----deee!".
And yes, the second disc really begins to lose steam.. however that first half is pretty consistently interesting, heck even some of the lesser 2nd disc tracks really work too.
Where it counts, the melodies, arrangements, and vocal performances, they all are stellar, like some of their best period. Oh yea, true, this album could have been helped a lot by streamlining the album's flow and letting some tracks breathe. Cutting some of the more redundant cuts and expanding existing to have more moments of instrumental ambience like on "Heaven's Cove" or something like the groovy outtro to "A New Beginning".
Regardless! This is the last time I feel Dream Theater really tried something new in writing and thematically ..and I think that inherently makes it more interesting then either of their two recent projects which are both paint by numbers. Beyond that, the freshness to their ambition makes the many melodic highlights shine brighter. Dream Theater Six Degrees of Inner TurbulenceWhile the first disc swings and misses quite a bit, the 2nd disc is a delightfully ambitious prog metal masterpiece. Dream Theater ScoreThis is worth it alone for the Octavarium and Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence performed with the full orchestraEarth, Wind and Fire I AmEdguy Space Police - Defenders of the CrownA nice fun breath of fresh air after the controversial 2011 "Age of the Joker" (Which I really enjoyed despite a few mediocre tracks). Here Edguy throw caution to the wind and come up with some of their goofiest material yet. rSongs about overhearing a couple having sex, having dinner with the mythical Baba Yaga, and even a fun cover of the quriky 80s hit "Rock Me Amadeus". An excellent outing from the boys. Edguy Age of the JokerNot exactly the travesty that everyone says it is. Production is a bit quiet, musically might sound a bit bland at points, but the good here is among Edguy's best. Pandora's Box, Robin Hood (even if it's a bit too long), Every Night Without You are all Edguy at the top of their game with catchy hooks and some great vocals (especially on Pandora's Box). The second half of the album does show Edguy playing close to the books (The Arcane Guild, Fire on the Downline, Faces in the Darkness) but it is by no means bad, just a bit bland. Edguy SuperheroesElectric Light Orchestra Secret MessagesA dated 80s washed collection of some of Jeff's strangest tunes. Besides the jarring
"Loser Gone Wild" and the strange track arrangement (featuring little to no build) it
remains a solid final great albumElectric Light Orchestra Out of the BlueA long dive into some of the most recognizable and timeless pop songs of the 70s. With the now classic "Mr. Blue Sky", the string and synth duet found on "The Whale" and the goofy "Jungle", Jeff lynne and Co. have crafted their most consistent release to date. Electric Six I Shall Exterminate Everything Around Metake a shot every time Dick Valentine says "solo" to introduce a solo. You'll be dead by the halfway point. Album still rocks hard though. Enter Shikari Nothing Is True and Everything Is PossibleErasure I Say I Say I SayCompletely engrossing. It goes across a wide range of emotions, from the eerie "So The Story Goes" to the frantic "Run to the Sun". The use of synths on this thing are consistently interesting and never get grating or too dull. It hits a perfect mix. Exuma ExumaFeed Me Calamari TuesdayFoxy Shazam The Church of Rock and RollMore bombastic than its older brother (S/T) and shorter to boot Foxy Shazam's 4th album sounds very powerful and bombastic, and the song quality is surprisingly up to the part of S/T if not a tad bit weaker. Still a worthy listen, sucks that they didn't keep this up.Foxygen HangFreedom Call BeyondSo cheesy it hurts. So cheesy I love it. Catchy power metal in the modern age. GoldeMan VoxelGreen Day 21st Century BreakdownGreen Day American IdiotHeavenly (FRA) Dust To DustHeavenly (FRA) VirusFollowing their Concept-album 'masterpiece' "Dust to Dust" Heavenly updates their sound with modern (better) production and some of the most catchy hooks and riffs in their whole catalog. Heavenly (FRA) Carpe DiemOn their 6th album, Heavenly stretches their creative juices from their 2006 effort, Virus, even
further. From soaring ballads like the infinitely uplifting "Farewell" to their signature
shredding power metal anthems like "Ashen Paradise", Carpe Diem might be their very best. Jason Becker Triumphant HeartsBeyond how much of a Triumph this is for Jason to release this, the music itself is damn good filled to the brim with catchy orchestral melodies and beautiful accompanying solos. Jon Bellion Glory Sound PrepA lovable scatterbrained album whose short length hurts it more than helps. The tracks here overall are tighter than anything Jon has done previously and this leads to some genuinely fantastic moments like Couples Retreat with its addictive sidechained drop and Cautionary Tales with a lush nostalgic synthline that plays out the song in a satisfying descending counter melody. Jon Fratelli Psycho JukeboxAn album chocked full of Jon's most playful lyrics, and melodies. Knife Party Abandon ShipNot phenomenal by any means musically (although I'd argue the production is top tier), it does however succeed in bringing a wide variety of different inspirations and set ups and morphing them into the Knife Party "brostep" language.
The extended runtime lets the tracks breathe and force itself to try new things, which works more often then not. Boss Mode with its sharp synth cutting through the drop with a distorted determination. EDM Trend Machine revels in its own atmosphere, not letting the usual 'in your face' synth and production cut through quite as hard. It does get a bit silly,
especially in its later tracks with Micropenis and Superstar both working in their own way but have aged more due to their jabs at humor then the actual musical content. Kaleidoscope, however, closes the album with a spacey chill conclusion that holds up perfectly. An album full of straight in your face bangers that doesn't try to hide that fact, its an acquired
taste, but one I still quite enjoy. Knights Dark MatterA tightly crafted collection of prog rock tracks that indulge in both Muse and Queen worship. Not
that it is a bad thing. Some highlights include the excellent opener Dark Energy, the rocking
Bones, and the ballad Odessey. Lena Raine OneknowingMacklemore and Ryan Lewis This Unruly Mess I've MadeI've got a soft spot for this album. The production is on point as usual and most of the tracks are, above all else, a lot of fun.Moby InnocentsWhile it may fly a bit to close to familiarity, Innocents is a strong album from Moby. The opener and "Saints" with their equally explosive cinematic pallets are immediately catching. But, the real highlights are the quieter moments, where Moby takes a back seat to the simple like emotionally effective vocals from the guests take the lead. "A Case For Shame" and "Almost Home" hit that perfect balance of synths and gorgeous melodies. While "The Perfect Life" with its bright sunny choir contrasts excellently with the grim cold "The Last Day". Even the albums darkest moments are worth a mention with A Long Time and The Dogs both creating an intoxicating uneasy soundscape.Moron Police Boat on the SeaMr. Mister Welcome to the Real WorldUniform of Youth and Broken Wings are sublime 80s tracks. The rest that is here is also shockingly good too, fun catchy and driving. Muse ShowbizA few dull songs "Escape" and "Overdue" but the rest is gold with some of the best being, "Unintended", "Falling Down", "Muscle Museum", "Hate This & I'll Love You", and "Sober" Muse The 2nd LawIn retrospect this is the dividing line between Old Muse and New Muse, where the British Alt Rock trio swapped for an Operatic Fuzzy Nightmare of silly antics and increasingly bombastic fluff. rThis hits a good last reflective meeting of the two before going all in on that later direction. It has the ridiculous cheese that is seen and amplified in the following decade while still retaining the restraint and classical touch from their first decade. Sure, it jumps from genre to genre in an extreme whiplash of conflicting tastes, and at times is a bit too much for its own good, but it all works in spite of its lessening restrainMuse AbsolutionNick Cave and The Bad Seeds Skeleton TreeNine Inch Nails Not the Actual EventsNine Inch Nails Hesitation MarksNine Inch Nails Add ViolenceOn par with NTAE, which already was excellent. From the atmospheric drab "The Lovers" to the angry "Not Anymore" the EP goes in plenty of surprising directions given its short run time. The only fault comes in the last 7 minutes of the monster "The Background World" which repeat the same loop over and over (52 times) just adding a tap of distortion with every redo. This gets repetitive fast and serves as a sore spot on an otherwise excellent EP.Nine Inch Nails With TeethNine Inch Nails StillNine Inch Nails Bad WitchShit Mirror's chorus sounds like its ripped out of Year Zero with its danceable and jazzy tones. Overall the rest is equally as interesting, distorted, and anxious. Reznor brings out his inner Bowie for some striking vocal moments on "God Break Down the Door" and the ethereal closer "Over and Out." It's so weird and different that I am not sure exactly how to compare it. It'll get better with age im sure. rEdit: and it hasOrden Ogan GunmenWestern Symphonic Power Metal, what more could you ask for? Feel like they did not grip the Western motif quite enough but what is here is still solid power metal with a tiny western flair. Panic! at the Disco Death of a BachelorA lush varied pop rock album. Filled with sharp brass performances and some unique ideas. Pyotr Tchaikovsky The Nutcracker, Op. 71One of the undisputed kings of holiday albums. While not ever piece hits equal levels, the best here is Tchaikovsky's wormiest work. "Arrival of Drosselmeyer" has a surprisingly modern sounding melodic motif which serves as a short but hooky as hell ear worm. Similarly, the "Divertissement" pieces in the middle of the second act are truly the highlight, with 10 minutes of easily the hookiest melodies. From the fluttering flutes in "Chinese Dance" to the thumping "Dance of the Reed Pipes" its' all so wildly good. Although it would be a crime to not mention "Waltz of the Flowers" with its blossoming melody and the "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy" which speaks for itself. Might not be his most complex, but certainly his most recognizable and catchy. Radiohead OK ComputerRadiohead's magnum opus rock album. It's not as incredible as Kid A or as lush as A Moon Shaped Pool... but in terms of a rock album Radiohead can do no better than this. Fantastic. Radiohead A Moon Shaped PoolGorgeous album, the strings add a huge depth into the Radiohead palette. From the loud abrasive opening track to it's depressing conclusion, it all sounds fantastic and shows that Radiohead are still as good as they have ever been.Radiohead Hail to the ThiefIt is raw and aggressive, but still has moments of that subtle Radiohead electornica that has come to define them in more recent years. The descending vocal lines of the hypnotizing "Backdrifts" to the gorgeous build of "We Suck Young Blood" up to even the hyper-aggressive "2+2=5" and the hopeless closer "Wolf at the Doorr. Not a commonly talked about album, but it deserves it. Real Life HeartlandEarly 80s New Wave at its absolute best. With the 80s classic "Send Me and Angel" and some other catchy cuts like "Always" , "Heartland" , and "Catch Me I'm Falling"Robert Schumann Carnaval Op. 9No. 5. Eusebius is one of my favorite pieces of piano music. It is gorgeous from start to finish. The rest of this collection is pretty stellar too. Scott Lloyd Shelly Terraria SoundtrackScott Lloyd Shelly Terraria Soundtrack Volume 2Self Porno, Mint & GrimeA great selection of the more experimental songs that came from the Ornament and Crime sessions.
Some tracks like "Summersound", "Now", "While the Gangsters Sleep", and "Evolution" are
practically begging to be om the main album.Self GizmodgeryExperimental but still very much a Self album. Some amazing tracks with some mediocre hits. Has
pacing issues at the end of the album.... you know what I mean just look at the tracklist.
Self Ornament & CrimeMy review is a bit outdated with my current opinions on this album. Production is sublime. I want to specifically mention deep cut "Coming Over" which is absolute ear-candy. With its distorted and delayed synth keys bringing this airy and gorgeous soundscape that grows and grows before exploding during the tracks climatic second verse (with some of Matt's best penned lyrics "You can't recognize her wings when they're wrapped up in mine") Sonoio RedVery rarely does an album blow me away first listen, this is one of those cases. A mesmerizing selection of distorted synths and hooky melodic vocals, what's not to loveSoundtrack (Film) Scott Pilgrim vs. The WorldSoundtrack (Film) Shrek: Music from the Original Motion PictureSoundtrack (Film) The Rocky Horror Picture ShowSoundtrack (Video Game) Fight Songs: The Music of Team Fortress 2Soundtrack (Video Game) Sonic R Original SoundtrackYou can't not dance around to thisSoundtrack (Video Game) Sonic Rush Adventure Original SoundtrackNot as loved as the first game's soundtrack, but damn is it still great. "A New Venture", "Plant Kingdom" and "Coral Cave" are the best in the game, but every track is great. Soundtrack (Video Game) World of WarcraftThe original Duotar theme still gives me chills to this day. St. Vincent MasseductionWith Sublimely smooth production, great vocal performances, and some addicting hooks, St. Vincent's newest album might be one of her best. St. Vincent MassEducationA surprisingly excellent remix? recreation? of her 2017 release. Even though some songs don't exactly excel or do much new with the new acoustic instrumentation (Happy Birthday, Johnny) others are greatly benefited by the stripped down production. (Sugarboys, Pills) System of a Down HypnotizeSystem of a Down MezmerizeTears for Fears Songs from the Big ChairOf all the albums from the 80s, Songs from the Big Chair has easily aged the best production wise. In some cases it can hold up to modern albums with its full instrumentation and excellent lower end. The Church SeanceA dark reverb-heavy album which goes from moments of melodic beauty on "Electric" to
moments of anxiety ridden experimentation on the frantic "Travel by Thought". An under
the radar gem from a forgotten yet prolific Australian band.The Fratellis Eyes Wide, Tongue TiedWhile not perfect The Fratellis newest album is pretty fun and overall a good listen. It mixes to form a sound that sounds similar to their first and second album mixed together. Songs like "Me and the Devil", "Baby Don't You Lie to Me", "Thief", and definitely "Dogtown" makes this album a good listen, even if you weren't fond of their 3rd album. rThe Fratellis In Your Own Sweet TimeIt still has its moments, and its heights are some of their highest (Starcrossed Losers, I've Been Blind, Advaita Shuffle, I Am That) but some of the tracks have lost their impact over the years. Still solid but not as solid as initially thought.The Killers Sam's TownIn their sophmore effort, The Killers takes the grit and shifts it to 10 giving us a more conceptually satisfying dive into the mind of someone leaving everything behind and trying to create their own new path. The best moments are those that take the gritty production and runaway with it, the dark "Uncle Jonny" and "The River is Wild" are both album highlights showing the extreme edges of melody and grit. The Killers Battle BornAn album drenched in 80s rock and synths. An absolute cheesefest, but one of the best out there. The National Sleep Well BeastA dark depressing brooding effort by the critically acclaimed group. Some highlights include the sharp "Turtleneck" , the depressing "Nobody Else Will Be There", and the hard hitting "The System Dreams in Total Darkness" The Who Who's Next"Baba O'Riley" alone makes this a classic in the genre.Tiny Mouse Tiny adventuresSounds like a weird 90s musical mishmash. There are plenty of elements that harken back to classic super specific pieces of nostalgia. Tracks like "Tiny Bits of Peanuts" sound like a Budget PC Games (specifically those made by Sierra). Tracks like "The Adventure Begins" sound like background music ripped straight from an early 90s anime. Occasionally it touches on more modern sensibilities about synth nostalgia, like with the glistening 80s keys on "Rodent Funk" Really it is just nice to hear a Comfy Synth album is so impeccably produced and varied as this, taking full advantage of the niche it is trying to fill. Twenty One Pilots TrenchStill holds up. There are some filler tracks, and they really drag down the themes and aesthetic of the album... like the wonder wall lite "The Hype", the forgettable "Smithereens" and the sweet but ill-fitting "Legend. The highs here are absurdly high. "Jumpsuit", "Levitate", "Bandito" and "Pet Cheetah" are all superb and the closer might just be one of their most mature penned tracks ever. There should have been more focus on the concept and theme, then the album wouldn't been borderline sublime. Twin Atlantic GLAAn album chock full of riffs that WILL gets lodged into your head, couple that with fantastic vocals and equally as great fuzzy production and you have an underappreciated scottish-pop rock album. Shoutout to CS:GO of all things for introducing this to me.Vangelis Blade Runner SoundtrackJust fantastic electronic music. There really is not much else to say. Weezer PinkertonWeezer The White AlbumThis album is one of the rare Weezer albums where everything feels effortless in the perfect way. Lightning strikes twice. The melodies just click together like puzzle pieces. The production is chunky and clean but still has a bit of that fuzz that you want from Cuomo and Co. The lyrics aren't disjointed or incoherent cringe. Even the "dumb" song "Thank God For Girls" is so tongue in cheek that it works fantastically. 3.5 greata-ha Hunting High and LowAndrew W.K. You're Not AloneAn odd mix of "party" anthems and symphonic rock strung together with speeches about "getting above the mud" and "enjoying life." Its so sweet and wholesome my teeth fell out. Pretty good overall though besides some questionable production choices.Avantasia Angel of BabylonUpon further reflection I think this is, while uneven, a good addition to the Avantasia catalog. Stargazer's has a grimy downright epic conclusion with shredding guitar solos fight for control over the narrative of the track. The title track is superb and has one hell of a Chorus, easily one of Tobi's best. Death is Just a Feeling shows the theatrics of Avantasia on full display with a fantastic vocal performance from Jon Olivia. Alone I Remember has this hard rock jaunty riff that is impossible not
to bounce along to. Even the more typical "Power Metal - Hard Rock" blended tracks are pretty good, Your Love is Evil, Rat Race and Promised Land are all three really great. Hell even the ballad, Blowing Out the Flame, is fantastic. Really besides the weak chorus of Stargazers, the fairy weak closing track and the incredibly weak Down in the Dark I really fail to see how this is seen as substantially weaker than The other two Wicked Trilogy albums. Avantasia The ScarecrowAvantasia Lost In Space (Part 1 & 2)Avantasia Lost in Space Part IAvantasia A Paranormal Evening With the Moonflower SocietyOverall enjoyable. Very comfortable song writing, feels like a sweet little family reunion. Tobi does need to expand his musical ideas next time, as this album gets a bit too close to a "Greatest Hits of Avantasia" compilation which hinders some of the more interesting elements. Ayreon The SourceBattle Tapes TextureTaking direction from the slower funkier middle half of their "Form - EP" Battle Tapes returns with a vengeance. Saving the glitchy distorted buzz as an accenting peak in tracks like the addictive "If Only" and opener "Brand New" whose bridge is Battle Tapes at their best, both tracks are in all honesty. The inclusion of the nearly 5 year old single "Weight of the World" serves as a fairly lonely questionable choice without much fanfare on an album full of otherwise new tastes of glitchy electronic bombast. A step up from Polygon in nearly every aspect.rBilly Idol The CageWhile there is no clear highlight like on The Roadside with the superb "Bitter Taste" what is
here is still pretty great pop rock from the aging yet still excellent sounding Billy IdolBilly Idol CyberpunkThis thing kind of slaps and I really don't care. It's dated, cheesy, too overtly serious for its own good. But somehow it all pulls it together with some great tracks. Bjork DebutBlind Guardian Beyond the Red MirrorBlind Guardian The God MachineI'm usually not into Blind Guardian's more 'straight' metal. I usually prefer a mix of their more symphonic elements. But this is pretty great! I loved all of the singles, especially Secrets of the American Gods which is a fantastic slice of music. The closing track is also a highlight with Hansi ripping the climax of the song in half in the most fantastical way only he can. Great album but gets a bit samey at points, and the production is still not fantastic. Better mixing than their 2015 and 2019 effort but still sounds a points muffled and soupy.Bo Burnham Inside (The Songs)Bon Jovi CrushBONES UK Bones UKIt's loud, crunchy, distorted, and a ton of fun.Butthole Surfers ElectriclarrylandThis is absolutely nuts and all over the place, but I really enjoy most of it. "Pepper", "Cough Syrup" and "Jingle of a Dog's Collar" are all fantastic. Cazzette EjectA massive 80 minutes worth of some of the most 2012 styled House music you'll hear. It has occasional misses, however a majority of the album remains a solid listen, even if you aren't down to party. Besides the awful closing bonus track F4T and the questionable placement of Beam Me Up twice on the album, there aren't any true detractors that makes it less than good. Charlie Puth VoicenotesSay what you will about his pseudo-douchey persona, and his awful first album... this is a pretty great sophomore effort. Taking keys from 80s pop (who isn't these days, not that I'm complaining) Puth puts together a great collection of tracks. From the absolutely tasty bass riff on "Attention" to the all accapella "If You Leave me Now" the album is chock-full of some great pop. It won't change your life, but its a nice comfortable album. Cheap Trick All Shook UpChicago Chicago XIDaft Punk HomeworkThis is a debut full of pieces that work deceptively well. However, those pieces are stretch to absurd lengths, makes it hard to justify its crushing 74 Minute length. What is there is more than enough to craft a slightly bloated but excellent 45-50 minute album, but when multiple tracks drag on past the 7 minute mark, even the absurdly catchy hook on 'Around the World' and the addictive distortion on "Rolling & Scratchin" can't save how long it feels. This is something they later nailed (generally) on Discovery. Production on the other hand is sublime, from the opening vocals to the closing thunderous synths "Alive" every vocal, synth, and effect pops off the page with tight precision.David Byrne Look into the EyeballSurprisingly addictive and fresh. "U.B Jesus" is a killer opener with bizzaire percussion and a swooping chorus of voices. "The Great Intoxication" marks another high point with its, for lack of a better word, intoxicating hook which builds into a great climax. "Like Humans Do" is unapologetically upbeat and catchy as all hell. "Desconocido Soy" has this excellent driving punching melody and closer ties it together with a rock solid little track. Really enjoyableDeadmau5 While(1<2)A great selection of 15 songs or so drug down by the severe padding of the other 10.Devin Townsend Project EpicloudIt might be short and not very "challenging" compared to some of his other work, but as a straight forward listening experience it is entertaining and catchy. Some tracks are substantially stronger then others, with the run of "Save Our Now" to the phenomenal "Kingdom" followed by the heartfelt "Divine" being the strongest portion of the album. The rest is very pleasant and catchy no doubt but lacks the build and release of the other pop oriented Devin albums, like 'Spirits Will Collide' from Empath. The musical elements work but feel a tad toned down and flatlined under the bombast which should, if anything, elevate that. Still Great overall but not as strong as it should be. Diablo Swing Orchestra PacifisticuffsMe: "What could this possibly be? Like some synthwave stuff?"
Track 1: Hard Rock / Country
Me: "Sold."DJ Shadow Our Pathetic AgeNot the expanded follow up to The Mountain Will Fall that I wanted. But the vocal half of this album is solid. Production is interesting and lyrics, while leaning more towards melodrama, do what they need to. The instrumental section of the album though (W/o Firestorm, We Are Always Alone and Rosie) are at times awful. With some tracks (Beauty... and Juggernaut specifically) sounding likes absolute wastes. Beauty... just goes off a cliff with a terrible synthline and Juggernaut being a wasteland of vocal cuts and sparse synths. Don Broco TechnologySlightly overlong and a tad thematically repetitive by its conclusion, Technology is still a memorably good album, but never reaches the perfect balance of thematic cohesion and satisfaction like on their follow up. The addictive 'Pretty' and superb 'Tightrope' serve as the immediate highlights, however other tracks like 'Yen' and 'Potty Mouth' are both equally excellent. Relegate 3-4 tracks as bonus tracks and this album would've been much tighter.Dream Theater OctavariumDream Theater Systematic ChaosDream Theater Train of ThoughtDynazty Titanic MassA blast of catchy modern power metal with free-flying choruses and fantastic vocal performances. Occasionally it does dip to some generic production however the great here is really great. Ed Sheeran xOn retrospect it holds up quite well. Sheeran hadn't yet collapsed into the drivel of a dozen "Perfects" and "Thinking Out Louds" yet so it comes off and completely authentic. It's still very much pop, but there is that authenticity to it which adds to every track. "Don't", "Sing", "Bloodstream", hell even the mega hits "Photograph" and "Thinking Out Loud" are solid when taken on their own outside of their absurd popularity. Edguy Tinnitus SanctusEdguy's controversial hard rock diversion is a solid reinvention of their aging sound. Album opener "Ministry of Saints" and the expansive "Speedhoven" are album highlights, but the rest is solid, albeit off genre hard rock tracks. Edguy Rocket RideEdguy's most straight forward release to date. While at times it does get a bit stale, most of the tracks here are fun and catchy as hellEdguy Hellfire ClubOne of the best transitional records you'll hearEels Beautiful FreakWeirdo 90s alternative rock. You can't help but like it.Electric Light Orchestra DiscoveryI wouldn't call it perfect, or well-aging, but there are some really great tracks here. "On the Run" with its addictive hook and "Wishing" with its gorgeous synth melody are the best. But, there isn't a true clunker on here, they just aren't exactly timeless. Electric Light Orchestra On the Third DayGreat album, production still isn't to peak ELO but it still sounds pretty good. The hook on "King of the Universe" is phenomenal as is the entirety of "Bluebird is Dead". But the whole album is filled with great tracks. Erasure CowboyErasure The InnocentsFilled with that signature 80-90s Wavestation styled synthpop action that I find so enduring, even though I didn't have my childhood surrounded by it. A fun time all around.Erasure World BeyondIt's rare when an artist-approved cover album (an entire cover album for that matter) is released. It's even rarer that it surpasses the original. This is one of those rare cases. Gone are the mediocre synth-pop / acoustic hybrid production that plagued the original version, instead being replaced by a great piano-string hybrid group. Although there are some holes (Andy's syncopated "Sky Sky Sky" on 'Love You To The Sky' feels out of place with the lack of a staccato pronunciation from the strings.), it is indeed a much more unique and superior experience to last year's version. Eurythmics Touch"Here Comes the Rain Again" is one of the best songs from the 80s. Period.Fall Out Boy Save Rock and RollPretty nice album, with the highlites being: "The Phenoix", "My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark (Light Em' Up), "Alone Together", "The Mighty Fall", and "Death Valley".Flogging Molly Life Is GoodFlogging Molly SwaggerForeigner Agent ProvocateurSome excellent mid 80s cheese. Filled to the brim with catchy classics and some mesmerizing 80s synth sounds.Foxy Shazam IntroducingFreedom Call Master of LightBesides the album art (Holy shit) this is a solid outting from the cheesiest PM band you will EVER
find. Not as consistent as their prior album "Beyond" but still has some real gems.Freedom Call M.E.T.A.L.Definitely a Freedom Call album, besides the awful title track the rest of the album still carries that trademark Freedom Call cheese that most fans expect. The opening track, "111" and "One Step Into Wonderland" were the album highlights, both containing soaring catchy-as-hell choruses. Solid stuff if a bit redundant. Gooding Building the SunGooding's big return after a 3 1/2 year hiatus brings out their best with solid production and some great hooks. Highlights include the sarcastic single "Troublemaker" the nasty synth heavy "King for a Day" and the somber apocalyptic closer "Rose and Thorns". Gorillaz HumanzThis is a clearly rushed, unfinished and downright ugly sounding album... much of the production sounds like demos, and that's not counting the amount of literal demos / unfinished concenpts that crept their way onto the even more odd Super Deluxe edition. But I kinda love it for its clear unfinished nature.Green Day American Idiot: The Original Broadway Cast RecordingGreen Day NimrodHarry Styles Fine LineIf ever there was an album to soundtrack the weird days of the Pandemic, this is certainly one of the most memorable. Harvey Danger Where Have All The Merrymakers Gone?Heavenly (FRA) Sign Of The WinnerThe 2nd album from Heavenly finds themselves refining what they created with their debut in such a
way to craft an almost great album. Helloween Rabbit Don't Come EasyHelloween ChameleonA misunderstood misstep. Sure it doesn't come close to capturing what fans expected from Helloween, but if taken on its own turf it is a fun jazzy metal album. Tracks like "Crazy Cat" and "When the Sinner" are filled with fun groovy horns that only add to the experience. Helloween The Time of the Oath"Power" and "Forever and One (Neverland)" are fantastic power metal classics. But the rest is pretty solid but by the numbers. Helloween Gambling with the DevilHole Dweller With Dreams of HereafterAs someone who is more into the synths themselves and not the purposely dirty analog aesthetic this was really good. The production is tight, and the melodies are really solid across the board. Special highlight to that opening track, it is gorgeousI Know Leopard Love Is a LandmineI See Stars Treehouse (Acoustic)Acoustic renditions of some of the tracks from their best album. What's not to love? It doesn't work as well as the originals but they're still nice.I See Stars New DemonsWhile some songs reek of copy-paste choruses, a majority of what is here is some of their best
work. Jon Bellion The Human ConditionBig, Bombastic, and fun. Without a doubt one of the best produced albums of 2016. Jon Fratelli Bright Night FlowersAn excellent downbeat album about longing to find love, and the trails and tribulations that comes along with that quest. It may not be everyone's cup of tea. But those strings are irresistible. Klaatu 3:47 EstKnife Party Rage ValleyOut of Knife Party's EPs, this is the best front to back. Not only containing two of their more popular tracks, which both are still a lot of fun, but the two 'deeper' cuts are fantastic. Special shoutout to Sleaze, which is one of their best period. The robotic voice, the brassy introduction melody and the stuttering disgusting drop all collide together into quite the banger. Rage Valley too spends its sweet time building to a monstrous drop, not their heaviest but the satisfaction still hits. M83 Hurry Up, We're DreamingMeat Loaf Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into HellHonestly... it's quite good. There are some tracks that are just, lacking, but generally there is more than enough to like here. The Jim Steinman-isms are pouring out of every hole. I love that, but it is not for everyone. Michael Buble ChristmasMichael Jackson HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book IJackson digs into the world on his half-compilation half-new 1996 effort. With some all time classics like "Stranger in Moscow" abd "Earth Song" and some quirky, angry cuts "Scream", "Tabloid Junkie". It's a weird slightly unhinged look into the collapse of Jackson's life in the spotlight. Moby Play: The B SidesA bit more experimental compared to the main album's 18 tracks, The Play B-Sides jump all over the place without much thought, not that any thought was expected considering they are B-Sides. "Memory Gospel" with its massive synth strings and subtle vocalizations is a early highlight, while Sunspot sounds like a lost Spyro the Dragon level with its groovy Rhode lead and rhythmic bass. There are weak moments though, with "Flower" being one of the earliest examples. Feeling less like a new idea and more of a alternate universe "Honey" from the main album but without the bite. Those wanting more Play era Moby should be pleasantly surprised regardless of its imperfections. Muse Origin of SymmetryMuse Origin of Symmetry: XX Anniversary RemiXXCitizen Erased remix blows the original out of the water, very excited to hear the rest. My Chemical Romance The Black ParadeAn album commonly shoveled alongside the other emo-rock tragedies of the mid 2000s. However, unlike other contemporaries in the genre, and their own prior attempts, My Chemical Romance succeeds in bringing an album that above all else is an entertaining fantastically produced journey. From the twisted carnival of the addictive "Mama" to the hook filled diversion, "Teenagers", this is an album that rises above all others in a genre. New Politics A Bad Girl in HarlemNew Politics' most consistent album. Runs just as long as it needs to and doesn't feel strung out. A ton of catchy hooks, simple but effective production, and feel good lyricism. Nine Inch Nails BrokenNine Inch Nails Ghosts V: TogetherFirst time I've ever been fully engrossed in a TR & AR Ambient album. Some tracks feel a bit too long winded, but it's all so mesmerizing that you forget how long they are. Nine Inch Nails Ghosts VI: LocustsOlivia Rodrigo SourThere is something so universally inherently relatable about teenage angst and puppy love relationships. While there is pretending its a perfectly written record, the simplicity of it all strikes a right chord. And I will never get enough of Olivia's angsty line delivery on opener "brutal" and "good 4 u"Pendulum ImmersionPeter Gabriel Scratch My BackPhil Collins ...But SeriouslyPhil Collins TarzanPhoenix (FRA) Wolfgang Amadeus PhoenixA solid pop-rock-indie effort if a bit samey and unimaginative throughout its later half. The instrumental experimentation that makes up the two parter feels out of place among the general indie pop the album is filled with. Opener Lisztomania comes up as genuinely fantastic, and is not followed far behind by Countdown and the Instrumental piece Love Like a Sunset, Pt. 1. The rest of the album comes up as too samey to be truly memorable and too poppy to be truly interesting beyond a passing admiration. Poets of the Fall Temple of ThoughtThe Happy Song is one of the most over the top hard rock songs I've ever heard, and it works so well because of that. Poppy I DisagreePoppy's best project so far. Hits the diversity that I'd hope for with a more metal / sludge direction while keeping it about the hooks. The strongest elements are the moments where Poppy lets the glitch infused production and vocal aggression take control, during tracks like BLOODMONEY, Fill the Crown, and Bite Your Teeth. I just wish more of it followed this style instead of giving in the Cutesy melodies like on the hook of Concrete. A great project that could have been elevated even higher by dropping the meme aspects of going full blast on the aggression and glitches. rThis is the direction she went with the extra tracks added on I Disagree (More). Queen JazzQueen News of the WorldRa Black SunRabbit Junk Rabbit Junk Will DieRadiohead AmnesiacRadiohead's Jazzy almost black sheep of their experimental catalog. Dark, Brooding, and weird it stands far on its own from Kid A, its more acclaimed older brother. Radiohead The BendsRadiohead In Rainbows Disk 2Ranges from "as-good-as Disc 1" to "Slightly less so" From the gorgeous swelling strings of "Down is the New Up" to the headbanging and irresistible "Bangers + Mash" down to the somber apocalyptic closer "4 Minute Warning". These may be more hopeless than the main disc, but the electric neon production that made the main album so addicting is here in full force. Radiohead KID A MNESIAFor the third disc. There are moments that really shine through, like the isolated string tracks which sound gorgeous and the opening "Why Us" version of Like Spinning Plates. Even this version of True Love Waits, the original version of Pulk/Pull is also fascinating. Sadly there just feels like there is something missing. I think the Minidisc leak, for as good as it was, set the bar simply too high. Roy Orbison CryingCame here for the original version of Crying... Stayed because it's actually a really damn good album. Scissor Sisters Ta-DahIt is a very fun and catchy album, when it hits it hits hard, but it does have it's collection of misses too.Self BrunchHappy Accidents should have made it to the full standard edition of the album, it is fantastic. The other two tracks are pretty decent but underwhelming.Self Super Fake NiceMatt's Temporary return to the self formula brings out a solid selection of tracks. Not perfect, but definitely worth a listen or two. Best tracks are "Runaway", "Subconscious Life", and "Looks and Money".Shannon Shaw Shannon in NashvilleA solid 60s throwback album. Complete with swelling strings and tacky organs. The opening track is definitely worth a listen.Shoji Meguro Catherine OSTSixx:A.M. Modern VintageIt's fun. Nowhere near the disaster that some people make it out to be. Stars, Before Its over, Miracle, Hyperventilate, and Drive are all greatSixx:A.M. This Is Gonna HurtThe first half of the album is pretty stellar all things considered. The title track, "Lies of the Beautiful People", and "Live Forever" are fantastic and haven't aged a day. The other half of the album have cliched late 2000s hard rock-isms that just have aged, "Deadlihood", "Sure Feels Right". They're not awful, but definitely aged. Sixx:A.M. Prayers For The Damned (Vol. 1)A solid return to form after the divisive "Modern Vintage". While a few of the tracks are forgettable, the good stuff here is somehow better than even their debut. Sixx:A.M. Prayers For The Blessed (Vol. 2)As good, if not slightly better than the first volume. Properly continues and builds on the themes of the first volume which makes it feel like a proper continuation instead of merely B-Sides. Very pleased. Sixx:A.M. Heroin Diaries SoundtrackSmallpools SmallpoolsA solid debut EP. Not a bad song here, although Dreaming is easily the best of the bunch.Soundtrack (Disney) The Hunchback of Notre DameSoundtrack (Film) Digimon: The Movie (Music from the Motion Picture)Soundtrack (Film) Shrek 2Soundtrack (Video Game) Sonic the Hedgehog BoomThe lesser of the two soundtracks, but it still remains a great addition to the Sonic Music Library. Spencer Neilson takes a much more soft-rock / atmosphereic synth led direction to the levels which give a unique but still excellent listening experience. In fact, the special stage theme, and tidal tempest actually fits better in the JPN soundtrack than their JPN counterparts.Soundtrack (Video Game) Jet Set Radio OSTSoundtrack (Video Game) Unreal TournamentSoundtrack (Video Game) Vivid Sound x Hybrid Colors: Sonic Colors OriginalSoundtrack (Video Game) Planetary Pieces: Sonic World Adventure Original SSoundtrack (Video Game) Sonic Frontiers: Stillness & MotionOne of my favorite gaming experiences of 2022, getting high and just exploring with this game's soundtrack entering my earholes was a special time, even if it is flawed in many aspects. A lot of the stuff here is substantially better than any game in the series (sans Sonic Mania) since Lost World. It knows when to let the atmosphere breathe and when to turn up the tempo and attack you with the electronic jitters. While some of the Cyberspace level pieces are bland, when they work they really work like the track "Database" which hits you in the face like a brick with its frantic melody and it's subass drop. The real highlight is the overworld "Island" themes which build and expand depending on your progress. Kronos island Mvt. 1 is fantastic with its foreboding synth swells and melancholic piano perfectly accenting the player's first exposure to the opening act of the game. If anything, the 23 different overworld themes and Cyberspace tracks are worth checking out. The rest fills the space but is never unpleasant or bad. Stewart Copeland Spyro: Year of the Dragon OSTIf ever there was a soundtrack that made me go, "yep that's the year 2000" then it's this. And that's not a bad thing at all! Sunrise Spring, Sunny Villa, Cloud Spires, and Fireworks Factory were the core to my early childhood music exposure. Copeland does it once again! Stewart Copeland Spyro The Dragon OSTSystem of a Down ToxicityNot as whacked out and insane as their double-album in 2005, but what is here is still that perfect mix of weird and metal. Tenacious D The Pick of DestinyThe Call Reconciled"I Still Believe (Great Design)" is one of the best songs of the 80s, a perfect mix of synths and theatrics make for a wonderful 5 and a half minute adventure. The Church Remote LuxuryThe Comet Is Coming Trust in the Lifeforce of Deep MysteryIt's like this strange mix of Synthpop / Vaporwave and one nutty-ass Saxophone...
...and it works.The Fratellis We Need MedicineThe Fratellis Half Drunk Under a Full MoonI'll have to let this one simmer a bit. Over a year out from its original intended release this thing finally comes puttering out of the finish line. It is reverb drenched, sometimes dreary, but kind of beautiful all at the same. A good coda to the horrible year of 2020 even if it was intended to be the start. The Hives The Death Of Randy FitzsimmonsNever been huge into The Hives (more so never had a chance to really listen to them closely) but I like this a lot. Not much else to it, just really solid stuff with the particular highlights being the more ambitious cuts like "What Did I Ever Do To You" (in all of it's "Do I Wanna Know" glory). The Bomb is frantic as hell and a mind teistingly fun ride. The Killers Day & AgeIf Sams Town was a mix of rock and electronic, then Day & Age is them taking the rock out of the electronics and making a whole album in that glitzy pop style. And it turns out really strong.The Killers SawdustA pretty good look at the missing pieces from both Hot Fuzz and Sam's Town, while the Sam's Town styled tracks (which tend to be darker) are easily the best here, The Hot Fuzz left-overs still have a bit of charm to them (Ballad of Michael Valentine). It's not a great listen-through though as nothing really flows and it ends with a dull string of remixes and covers. The Prodigy Invaders Must DieThe Struts Everybody WantsRelistening to this, it really does kick the crap out of their second album.The Struts Strange DaysAs one of the first volumes of the "Quarantine Album" era that occurred during the Pandemic's early days, this serves as both a cultural mark for where the world was, and an impressive showcase of the band's hook writing prowess. Recorded in 10 days the band shows more variety and stronger ideas/ performances than their 2018 Sophomore release. A flash in the bottle, capturing a dreary and depressing era in modern society accented with The Struts happy go lucky quirks. All made more interesting with a more self reflective mature focus on tracks like the excellent opener "Strange Days". Tokio Hotel Dream MachineA solid 80s washed throwback pop album. From the atmospheric opening track 'Something New', the nostalgic 'What If' to the percussive closer 'Stop, Babe' there is not a real bad moment here. And for Tokio Hotel, that's a great achievement. Train My Private NationTrans-Siberian Orchestra Beethoven's Last NightTrans-Siberian Orchestra The Christmas AtticTwenty One Pilots BlurryfaceSome of the most mesmerizing production I've ever heard on a pop album. Unisonic Light of DawnWeezer MaladroitFirst 2/3 of the album are pretty fantastic. But once the last stretch begins with Slave the album deflates pretty fast and runs right out of ideas. Not much a damper to forget the majority of the album, as it is superb. Weezer Pacific DaydreamWeezer SZNZ: WinterThe strongest of the SZNZ series. While still not truly excellent, this is the closest to really capturing lightning in a bottle. The opener is cold and effective, Iambic Pentameter is probably the strongest tracks in the series, period. Sheraton Commander is a fantastic theatrical experiment with some lovely string flourishes throughout. Each track has a particular moment that is memorable or cool. Surprisingly solid. That being said... SZNZ overall is a messy mixed bag, with maybe 12-15 good tracks at most and A LOT of filler. Doesn't come anywhere near the magic of other recent Weezer successes like White and OK Human3.0 goodAvantasia The Metal OperaTobi's early stuff has never really been my cup of tea. This is no exception. At points there are moments where Tobi's songwriting abilities poke through and come up with something great. The Tower, Avantasia, and Glory of Rome are good examples of that. However, some tracks just feel motionless with their repetitious choruses and stagnate instrumentation. The production sounds weirdly clean and tinny. The drums, however, are consistently excellent. Wish I liked this more than I do, theres great stuff here but the entire thing is bogged down.Avenged Sevenfold NightmareIt's got good moments, "Welcome to the Family" and "Fiction" are unforgettable... and even "Buried Alive" and "Danger Line" are too pretty great. Much though goes in one ear and out the other. It's solid but not quite great. Barns Courtney The Attractions of YouthBillie Eilish When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?Blind Guardian At the Edge of TimeBrockhampton TMAs what basically amounts to a Coda, TM is a decently pleasant listen with enough highlights to keep hardcore fans happy. Man On the Moon and Crucify Me are particular highlights with their extended outro solos that bring a small sense of finality and discomfort to them. Keep it Southern is also a highlights with its short length making sure it doesn't overstay its welcome with its catchy hook and self reflective performance from Kevin Abstract. Bruno Mars Unorthodox JukeboxIt's Good, It's varied. That's about it. The roots that lead to 20k and Uptown Funk are planted here. Bruno Mars 24K MagicAbout half great half dull as hell. It's good but once again Bruno Mars is at his best in his singles, and on autopilot elsewhere. C418 Volume BetaIts fine for the most part. But it stands on an electronic contrast with the ambient piano loops
of the other Volume Alpha. Just feels out of place, and at times, completely uninspired. That's
not to say that it's bad. Alpha, Dead Voxel, Ballad of the Cats, Kyoto and Concrete Walls are all
fantastic and retain the original style. Chicago Love SongsColdplay Viva la Vida or Death and All His FriendsDaniel Deluxe CorruptorA nice little Synthwave album that gets a bit stagnate and tedious in the second half.Darren Smith and Terrance Zdunich Repo! The Genetic Opera OSTDeadmau5 mau5ville: Level 1Deadmau5 4x4=12Deadmau5 >album title goes here<Deadmau5 For Lack of a Better NameDeadmau5 Polar (Music From the Netflix Film)Nosedrop is absolutely fantastic, the rest is fine enough too if you like distorted Reznor inspired soundscapes.Devin Townsend SnugglesA nice peaceful experience, especially when paired with *other* factors. Well produced, has that Devin charm to it. Solid. Devin Townsend Project TranscendenceHas its moments that shine really bright like the rerecording of "Turth" and the fantastic "Stormbending" and the climatic "From the Heart". However, even with its tight production and solid performances, it starts to feel a bit stale. Tracks are structurally solid but go in one ear and right out the other. Still a pleasant listen with enough highs. The bonus disc, however, is greatDido Life For RentDJ Shadow The Less You Know, the Better"Give Me Back the Nights" is the most unconfortable track I've heard in a while. In a good way. Dream Theater A Dramatic Turn of EventsDream Theater Distance Over TimeIt's fine enough. The three singles were easily the weakest parts of the album... however nothing here really stood out too much. Barstool Warrior (funnily enough) was the best track followed closely by At Wit's End. The production has seen a huge step up from The Astonishing, the drums here back a huge punch and nothing is muddied too much. The solos are also Petrucci's best in ages, with some crazy technical ones and some melodic ones, its a nice balance that works well. This is one of those albums that I may go back to eventually, but after two listens I feel like I've already gotten all I can out of it. It's fine, but it isn't terribly memorable. Dua Lipa Future NostalgiaWorking in retail I can't go over 20 minutes without a track from this album being played. And after I Shazamed it and realized what was happening to my brain... I accepted that this kinda slaps.Edguy MonumentsA solid compilation that includes some fan favorites and deep cuts. The new tracks aren't anything crazy (excluding the Avantasia drenched Ravenblack and the old school Landmarks) but decent enough to tide over some fans till their eventual full-length returnFeed Me High Street CreepsWhile it doesn't have as much of an expansive pallet as 2013's Calamari Tuesday, High
Street Creeps returns Feed Me to top form with a memorable collection of modern EDM. The
best tracks are when Feed Me returns to his Electro roots, in tracks like "Barrel Roll".
Most of the album though has spacious percussive drops that are addicting and
make for an interesting listen. A solid, imperfect effort.
(Sidenote: The release year is 2019, idk why it put 2016) Feed Me A Giant Warrior Descends on TokyoFoxy Shazam Dark Blue NightFundamentally a different band then they were during their golden age, that is undeniable. However, out of all of their swings in the "Foxy 2.0" era this is easily their strongest, both on paper and in execution. From the gorgeous opening orchestra that allures listeners in right down to the expansive (almost exhaustingly so) tracklist the album is full of weird fuzzy distorted ideas. Most of them work too, which is even more surprising. Sure, corners should have been cut but considering how much works, I think they slide by that problem just enough to really enjoy the ride.Freedom Call Legend of the ShadowkingGorillaz The Now NowGreen Day Revolution RadioThe mastering on this thing is god awful. But, saying that, this has some of their best material since their 2009 effort or hell at points even their 2004 project. Somewhere Now, Outlaws, the title track, and especially Bang Bang are highlights. But, it feels generally like Green Day by Numbers. Way better than the trilogy and whatever the hell Father of All is but far from their most conceptually interesting / most cohesive. HammerFall Crimson ThunderHelloween The Dark RideHelloween Straight Out of HellHelloween Better Than RawHere Come The Mummies Carnal CarnivalI See Stars Digital RenegadeIt's pretty good. While it never reaches anywhere near the maturity and cohesiveness of Treehouse or even New Demons, the music
here is indeed some of their catchiest, not that it is a bad thing. I See Stars PhasesI See Stars Anomaly / DriftFinally, after nearly 7 years since their last full length and this is what they have to show. They are good but not quite at the same level of tight focus that Treehouse displayed. Production sounds like an obvious evolution with its focuses more on airy spacious melodies using the breakdowns as more accents then as a crutch, however the it all sounds a bit muddy and lacks punch when it needs. I enjoy this side to them more generally, but this doesn't quite hit and high that Treehouse delivered. As long as the rest of the album continues (bare minimum) at this level then I will be pleased but not blown away. I can't help but think that Don Broco on their 2021 album did what I See Stars is doing here but better. Ill-Advised MasochistsFiller galore! While many tracks fill that angsty industrial aesthetic, many also feel pointless or have points where it becomes embarrassing. Faithless Elector with its impromptu chicken impressions or Mercy with its unnecessarily lengthy sample that delays the track's effect longer than it should. There are great moments scattered throughout though. The penultimate track, Parasite, is filled with foreboding bass stabs, similarly the bright synths at the end of Sleep deliver the same foreboding effect. Sleep and Bridges both feel like something straight out of an MCR record, with an upbeat sing-along-chorus and interjecting strings and orchestration. There is something to like here, if it drug down by a messy tracklist and common misfires. Ill-Advised Lisieux 1: RenaissanceMore of the same from Masochists only shorter and more focused. Starless and She Will Be Queen both has an EDM undertone to it, from the rumbling bass in Starless to the dubstep influenced chorus on She Will Be Queen. Wound and Glass Mirror No. 5 use distorted percussion and atonal synthlines to deliver an addictive atmosphere that doesn't sound too distant from something off of NIN's Year Zero. It's all fine, if nothing special. Imagine Dragons Night VisionsA solid debut that is retroactively made worse by every other album in their discography. Kendrick Lamar DAMN.I really don't like rap. But I will admit, this was a pretty fun listen. The transition between BLOOD. and DNA. is exactly the kick in the stomach I needed to realize this wasn't what I normally listen to, and for what its worth, this is the only Rap album i'll head back to.Korn See You on the Other SideA few notable tracks stand out for me. "Twisted Transistors", "Politics", "Coming Undone", "Open Up", "Liar", and "For One One" quickly come to mind. A fun ride non the less. Lil Yachty Let's Start Here.It is so close to something great. The album is at its peak when it is constantly shifting and juxaposing itself against itself. At points it feels almost cinematic, like the fantastic opener "The Black Seminole" which flawlessly grows and morphs through different musical ideas setting the perfect scene. There are only a few other tracks that really approach this peak. "I've Officially Lost Vision!" is one highlight which morphs and distorts creating an almost overwhelming sense of stress. The closer, "Reach the Sunshine" also approaches these heights which its long spacious outro juxtaposed to its distorted freakout. I just wish the other tracks, which come closer to a poppier Tame Impala then the more experimental opening tracks, did a bit more with what they are given. Maroon 5 It Won't Be Soon Before LongMeat Loaf Welcome to the NeighborhoodMore concise song writing that properly accents Meat Loaf's weaker vocals makes for a better return to form. Muse DronesIts good... great in places, but it all feels by the numbers and restrained. You have some fantastic cuts like the frantic "Reapers" and the crunchy "The Handler" but then you have some really weak cuts like the overly long "Psycho" and the unoriginal and lame "Mercy". The good still outweighs the bad, and in a front-to-back listen the entire thing flows nicely. Muse Simulation TheoryMuse's grand struggle for pop relevancy revealed itself drenched in pop culture references and a tacky half-exposed 80s flair. I don't hate it. The A side of the album has many fantastic tracks, the opening epic Algorithm and the highlight two punch of Propoganda and Break it To Me which are both fantastic. But when those original three singles rear their head in the back half the entire experience falters. Closer, The Void, remains the only real track worth love in the second half with its drab rumbling ending. Good ideas are here, but they were somehow spread too thin, and yet also not developed enough. Imagine that? New Politics Lost In TranslationNine Inch Nails The SlipNine Inch Nails Pretty Hate MachineNirvana NevermindIt's fine. I just can't bring myself to enjoy it past the first few tracks, and even then... I guess grunge just doesn't click with me. Paramore This Is WhyProduction is on point, nice to listen to, but it is so boring. So many nice touches and things that should pack a punch,
but yet once it ended all of those moments faded fast. could be a fantastic listen given the right mood and time. Yet to
find that myself though.Pathfinder Fifth ElementPoppy EAT (NXT Soundtrack)Poppy's songwriting rebounds after that horrendous "Music to Scream to". Not as great as "I Disagree" but still great stuffRa Critical MassA good record with some excellent songs but bogged down by some pretty harsh duds, the best are: "Awake", "Supermegadubstep", "Won't Be Home Tonight", "Running Blind", "Ecstacy", "Tragic Empire", and "The Voice Inside My Head".Radiohead The King of LimbsReal Life FlameWhile it has its' moments, most of the charm of the debut is gone. "The Longest Day", "No Shame", and the eerie "Cathedral" are the only moments that truly pop.Scatman John Scatman's WorldA collection of mostly catchy tracks.. although the overall experience is drug down by some
notably awful lyrics that have some crazy flow issues. Serj Tankian Orca Symphony No. 1Smallpools Lovetap!Soundtrack (Anime) Sonic XSonic DRIVE is a kickass opening song, the rest is good too I guess. Soundtrack (Film) The Great Gatsby (Music from Baz Luhrmann's Film)Soundtrack (Video Game) Sonic AdvanceThere is some great stuff here like Neo Green Hill's theme and Ice Mountain being by far the biggest standouts. The rest is very enjoyable too in the moment but never really has me scrambling to listen to it outside of the game. Sykotik Sinfoney EargasmDumb Dumb Pseudo-Metal music, but its still entertaining regardless The Church Of Skins and HeartThe Church The Blurred CrusadeThe Killers Hot FussThe Struts Young & DangerousIt has its moments for damn sure. "Who Am I?" and "Fire - Part 1" are album peaks with their infectious melodies complimenting their squeaky clean bombast production. "Ashes - Part 2" and "In Love With a Camera" are also both rock solid pop tunes . The rest is fine, but ultimately feels too clean and passable to be memorable. The Weeknd StarboyTokio Hotel Kings Of SuburbiaWhile the lyrics are shallow and the vocals are, at times, awful... the highlights are interesting enough to make it an easy album to return to. Trans-Siberian Orchestra Letters from the LabyrinthTrust Company The Lonely Position of NeutralTwin Atlantic POWERReplacing the tasty guitar riffs from GLA for a full indie pop aesthetic, Twin Atlantic returns, firing out in a relatively comfortable fashion. Besides two filler tracks, nothing here feels like a total waste. The whole thing comes together feeling like a very safe and partially regressive album that fails to pick up on GLA's strengths. It's an album full of moments that shows shades of wanting to be more. Twin Atlantic TransparencyTwin Atlantic, now a two man group, are traveling further from their fuzzy rock roots. If Power was themselves taking a hard left Synthy Pop turn then Transparency is committing to that shift with a more original take. There are some audacious oddly catchy numbers like "One Man Party" and "Bang on the Gong" which are bizarre but non the less catchy. If you liked the direction Power started veering into then you will enjoy something on this. Weezer WeezerWeezer SZNZ: AutumnProbably best of the SZNZ project so far, still has a few clunkers and overall isn't excellent but credit where it is due. Far from the blackhole that was summer and the weird undefined quirkiness of Spring. 2.5 averageDeadmau5 Mau5ville: Level 2Deadmau5 W:/2016ALBUM/Dream Theater Falling into InfinityDream Theater Dream TheaterEd Sheeran Ã·Upon review, its not terrible. There aren't many issues with it. But a lot of it goes in one ear and right back out the other. Tracks like Castle on the Hill, Eraser, New Man, and Supermarket Flowers still work really well. Personal favorite, Save Myself, is a really sweet farewell track. But the rest is really... boring. Ed Sheeran +Ed Sheeran =I think this is more lively than Divide. But with that comes a lack of cohesion. Nothing goes together. Saying that, there are still some good ideas and tracks here. Bad Habits has a slick vocal melody and a dark dancey chorus. The Joker and the Queen has a very sweet chorus and some nice strings to tie it together. Collide has a nostalgia laced instrumental topped with a simplistic yet effective hook. Even Shivers has a really effective instrumental that is static but serves its point well. Nothing, really though, makes it any better than a few highlights. Electric Light Orchestra Alone in the UniverseOpening track and closing track are fantastic, the rest are... perfectly average. Electric Light Orchestra From Out of NowhereOn the upper side of mediocre. Nothing sticks out about this besides a few catchy cuts, like the title track. Production is the same ol' dry Lynne style and it lacks a lot of dynamics. Completely forgettable, which is a shame from such a legendary musician Electric Light Orchestra Part II Electric Light Orchestra Part IIElectric Light Orchestra Part II Moment of TruthDecently solid. While there are some really obvious clunkers, there is enough here to make it a charming diversion. Erasure Tomorrow's WorldIts pretty decent. Thats about all there is to say. Its a harmless half hour of synthpop covered
in the early 2010s EDM-POP Craze, complete with the ugly production. Fitz and the Tantrums More Than Just A DreamThe title track and the walker are excellent indie pop jams, the other stuff is fairly average, by the numbers, popFoxy Shazam GonzoIt sounds so weak. The vocals can't shine due to the recording style (They recorded it start to finish in one evening) and everything sound so dead or empty... like they were half asleep. Tragic Thrill does sound great, but even that song sounds so sleepy. Which coming from the bombastic excellence of S/T and The Church of Rock and Roll is a huge step backwards. fun. Some NightsStarts off strong but quickly sputters and runs out of steam. Gorillaz Song Machine, Season One: Strange TimezAbsolutely no cohesion but I think it works. Seeing the album's theme and vibe shift in real time as the COVID Pandemic loomed over the release of this thing makes it one of the more interesting "Quarantine Albums" of the time. Not a fantastic album, there are more whiffs than hits for me, but I appreciate the ambition and the time capsule nature of the whole thing. Gorillaz Cracker IslandThere are moments which are really cool but it is all drowned out in this synthpop direction that they've been working with since 2018. Not that it is inherently bad however, it lacks edge. I think the title track is the only thing that wormed itself into my head. The rest is passable and at points nice but never does enough to really make an impact. Green Day iDOS!Production is god awful. Songs are mostly OKAY. Some gems "Makeout Party", "Lazy Bones", "Lady Cobra", "Wow! That's Loud" but the rest are just okay with some downright awful tunes, "Fuck Time" , "Wild One"Green Day iTRE!Green Day Â¡UNO!Green Day Otis Big Guitar MixThey sound miles better, much less of a fatiguing experience. I'm interested to see if there are more to come. Greta Van Fleet Anthem of the Peaceful ArmyBesides the great opening track most of the stuff here is mediocreHammerFall (r)EvolutionPerfectly fine Power Metal. Nothing too special, a few catchy choruses, average production, average vocals. Harry Styles Harry's HouseSushi Resturant is so fucking good, but the rest is... fine. Coming from Fine Line, which was excellent, this is a big step down.Heavenly (FRA) Coming From The SkyThe underproduced and utterly forgettable debut from one of Power Metal's most overlooked bands.
Besides the first two tracks and the excellent bonus track "Promised Land" it all feels
underdeveloped and sludgy. I See Stars Digital Renegade [Instrumental]It's a pointless release of a decent album. It's fine.John Adams On the Transmigration of SoulsIt's an eerie, melancholic piece that I can't see anyone listening to outside of its intended purpose.Knife Party 100% No Modern TalkingKnife Party Lost SoulsA nice general return to form, if it doesn't do too much new with the ageing Knife Party "brostep" or "Brohouse?" formula. Opener No Saint is an autopilot production saved soely but its cinematic drop. Lost Souls feels lost in its muddled dirty metaphor, trying to harken back to Centipede from Rage Valley without the success. Death and Desire, however, is fantastic. A catchy hook that is doubled by the brassy synth melody that trades spots with the vocals during the drop. Ghost Train is an interesting experiment that has aged better than most. Its very weird, argubly unfinished, yet its weird spectre scream of a drop somehow works. Krewella New World Pt.1Nero Welcome RealityNeurosonic Drama QueenI think there is good to found here. A majority of the tracks are ear worms. The kung-fu rap in Are Solar, the entirety of the gem Boneheads, and plenty of other tracks have a few bits that bite and stick in your brain. The lyrics however are generally horrendous, album opener is the absolute worst filled with gross glorification of sexual abuse in the industry with a horrendously misogynistic bite all the while bitching about their lack of fame. Walk before you can run fellas. To a teenager this is the greatest music ever, jump forward ten years after and it has its moments... but that's about it. Ninja Sex Party Attitude CityOliver Tree Ugly Is BeautifulAverage pop music with a small 90s alt flair made notable by the gimmick of a bloated ego. Not terrible, but god is this schtick lame Panic! at the Disco Pray for the WickedHalf of the album's tracks are great ("Hey Ma, Look I Made It", "Roaring 20s", "Old Fashioned") but the other half is either harmless ("King of the Clouds") or just... bad ("Silver Lining") a major step down from 2016's Death of a Bachelor. Pegboard Nerds Guilty PleasuresQueen Bohemian Rhapsody: The Original SoundtrackIt's a compilation of Queen's greatest hits with the occasional rare-live recording. Nothing special, much like the movie itself. Radiohead Pablo HoneyRichard Marx Repeat OffenderBesides the 80s classic ballad "Right Here Waiting" nothing here is anything to write home aboutSelf SelfaforniaSelf The Half-Baked SerenadeEh... Production doesn't sound as crisp and dynamic as the following and previous album and the songs are much more "noise" then actual music. Not the worst thing (Kiddies and Joy the Mechanical Boy are great.) but the weakest Self album by far. Self Subliminal Plastic MotivesSixx:A.M. 7An interesting revamp of seven of their tracks. A nice change of pace for those looking for it. But not completely interesting. Skrillex BangarangSkrillex Quest for FireWhile I can't say I'll ever return to it in the near future, it is undeniable that Skrillex has crafted a really frantic and fun dubstep album. The features lend themselves to the album's most interesting moments. Like the spaced out drop on Hydrate or the hectic rattling on XENA. Another highlight is the Supersonic where the rusty sharp synths cut through the drop like a finely tuned knife. Very tight production, although a bit bland of a sound palette, sounds so much similar to a dozen other recent electronic projects. Although, where it matters, the arrangements, interesting samples, and synth choices do help elevate it past its otherwise boring production.Skrillex Donâ€™t Get Too CloseI think I enjoyed more on here then on the first release. The first three tracks flow together so nicely which is a complete reversal from Quest for Fire. The recontextualization of Leave Me Like This was a nice surprise and made the album's slower frame of mind really settle in.
The title track is genuinely filled the rusty depths of my rotten heart with a sweet moment of somber innocent fun, even if the first time without knowing the 'twist' makes the vocals initially obnoxious.
Much like the first it shares its fair bit of forgettable bland moments with equally as dull production, although it shines more here to my ears. You have one genuinely good 10 track album between both albums here, and bland dubstep. It is fun, but only those few moments stick around past the end.
Bad for Me is a disastrous fan fic version of Lil Dicky's "Earth" complete animal meowing sounds and gross gross percussion.
3AM Sounds like a Minecraft Parody track from 2016.Soundtrack (Video Game) Altered BeastClassic game, barely above average soundtrack. Nothing stands out as bad, which for early Genesis is solid, but the soundtrack still doesn't do anything particularly fantastic to stand out. Starbomb Player SelectA few comical tracks, like "Minecraft is for Everyone", but much like the debut most of the comedy comes from "haha they aren't supposed to say that!" and it feels pretty stale. Styx Kilroy Was HereI liked the opening track, even how cheesy and dated it is. The track, "Don't Let it End" is also just as cheesy but damn if it doesn't just make you smile. Styx seems to half commit to the concept though as the entire album feels like a 40 minute tangent in the first act of a full story. The Killers Wonderful WonderfulThe Killers lose their unique edge, producing an average by-the-numbers indie pop album. There are seeds of something truly special, the experimental title track and "The Calling" show this, however the rest of the album strays far from what these tracks say and do. The Longshot Love Is For LosersTrain Drops of JupiterWeezer The Red AlbumWeezer HurleyWeezer SZNZ: SpringThey sure did nail the sound of Spring, that's for sure. Weezer SZNZ: SummerProduction is really tight and chunky, the highs are higher but also the lows are just as lame as the lows of Spring. Decent Job.Zedd True ColorsIt's perfectly fine. If you like this kind of music you'll like this. Otherwise, you won't get much out of this besides a few headbobbin' tunes. 2.0 poorBrockhampton The FamilyIt's like listening to a livestreamed therapy session, with all of the inherent one sided toxicity intact. A 35 minute rant type of stream of consciousness accented by unfinished underdeveloped beats and a lack of respect to the legacy and everyone involved. Occasionally hitting gold only when it becomes too arrogant and devolves into self sabotage. Charlie Puth CharlieI respect the craft and the clear effort put into production, but most of this is really blandly written pop music.Coldplay Music of the SpheresThe writing disparity from the closer to the rest of the album is astonishing. I mean I can't say its truly terrible, as it is catchy at the very least but... jeez. Emojis as song titles, at times lifeless production (although it mostly sounds fine), and some of the lamest writing they've done yet. The closer, as many have already said, is by far the best track here. Deadmau5 mau5ville: Level 3DJ Shadow The OutsiderEdguy Kingdom of MadnessUnfortunately any good songwriting here is overshadowed by the awful production.Electric Light Orchestra Balance of PowerPretty dull and uninspiredElectric Light Orchestra ZoomBesides the solid "Moment in Paradise" the album has nothing besides below average "rock and roll" duds. Electric Light Orchestra The Electric Light OrchestraWhile undoubtedly ambitious, the production and songwriting never quite hit the mark leaving an underwhelming, dated, and messy productElectric Six How Dare YouErasure World Be GoneThe song writing is safe, but what really kills it is the dull production. Foxy Shazam BurnDecent. Some good songs (Dreamer, In My Mind, Dreamscape 2020) but holy shit there are some garbage production choices. Into the Wild has a disgusting drop in audio volume which ruins what was already a bad track. Dreamscape 2020 has this same issue and feels even more jarring as the song abruptly switches to something different. It sounds like a song I'd make and then "maximize" the volume just to test the song itself. Not something for a finished album. Everything else *works* but is underwhelming. What happened to the S/T type of writing and production. Jeez. Foxy Shazam The Heart Behead YouThe preview video for this thing sounds absolutely gorgeous. I am extremely excited for this after the dud of 'Burn'
Edit: How did I get this so wrong such a shame! The opening track has that Foxy charm I love, but the rest is a lamer Burn. Damn.Green Day Father of All MotherfuckersIt's a perfect trailer music compilation, and that's about it. Jonas Brothers Happiness BeginsIt's decent enough radio fodder. Only Human is ridiculously catchy and the opening track is decent enough. But nothing really stuck with me beyond that. It has more character than their older stuff, that's for sure. Knife Party Haunted HouseThere are pieces here that work, but it never quite hits the mark. Power Glove is a great track all the way through, with a massive drop that demands to be noticed. LRAD and EDM Death Machine on the other hand have their moments but are missing far too much to work. LRAD is the closest however, with a catchy simplistic synth melody kicking off before opening the soundscape up even more with the anticlimactic, yet still fitting drop. The Internet Friends remix introduces more variety than the original track, but at the cost of nullifying either's importance, why waste valuable EP time on a remix that doesn't change much. Korn The Path of TotalityMarilyn Manson Heaven Upside DownKill4Me is a hard jam. The rest of this though... nothing great. Meat Loaf Braver Than We ArePoor Meat Loaf, you can tell that he is trying his darnedest to attain that theatrical spice that made Bat Out of Hell and Bat Out of Hell 2 so successful. But here, it seems his voice as finally reached his limit, its kinda sad to listen to really. Muse Will of the PeopleEven as a Muse fan, this is bad. I have found something to really enjoy in every Muse album.. even Sim Theory for all of its pop indulgences had some real gems. But Man, this just can't hit the mark.
Some tracks sound great in their bombastic stupidity (which is what I want from Muse) like You Make Me... Halloween, and Won't Stand Down. But a lot here is undercooked. Liberation has hands down some of the worst lyrics Matt has ever penned (if I'm sure it wasn't randomly generated) and the production during the Choir segments is awful. (Why is there a flanger?) Ghosts could have used a better instrumental instead it just peters along with a fairly repetitive arpeggio.
...But the real piece of work is Verona which is just the worst. Dreadful mixing with Matt, Dr. Synth Lead, and the guitar fighting in a 3 way duel for prominence with what sounds like clipping beating them all. The synth choices are jarring against each other. Matt's vocals don't fit the softer instrumental and sound like they're from a different fucking world.
And don't get me started on the snoozey sleepy vocal melody during the chorus of the closing track. New Politics VikingsNinja Sex Party Cool PatrolPanic! at the Disco Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die!Stale production, harsh vocals, and dull song writing make this a hard sell. While some tracks are interesting "Vegas Nights" and "Casual Affair" most are by the numbers dance pop, and not very good dance pop at that. Pegboard Nerds Nerds By NatureLong gone are the days where Pegboard Nerds were melodic in their dubstep wankery. Besides the aptly titled "Melodymania" there is nothing here that is worth a full listen. How far they've fallen.Shawn Mendes Wonder"Wonder" has the dorkiest sounding chorus of the year. Imagine Shawn Mendes is stretching his arms gradually as his voice opens up. Ridiculously cheesy. Harmless though. Soundtrack (Film) West Side Story SoundtrackSoundtrack (Video Game) Sonic Forces OST - A Hero Will RiseMost of the Modern Sonic music is inoffensive and forgettable. Most of the Classic Sonic music is ear grating and most of the Avatar music is out of place. The whole thing feels uneven and not at all cohesive. Besides the main theme Fist Bumb and the closing track The Light of Hope there is nothing here to come back to. The Killers Don't Waste Your WishesExactly what it says on the tin. A compilation of the 11 years of Christmas singles. Nothing too terribly offensive, but not my style. Weezer The Teal AlbumI thought this was just a classic reddit meme, but it actually exists.... well its fine enough, some decent covers, some lackluster ones, its fine. Weezer RaditudeWeezer The Black AlbumThis this is a real piece of work. While there are some highlights, like the truly excellent opening track and 'High as a Kite' (I even like Living in LA), everything else falls to dirty under composed yet overproduced mediocrity. The album has no central core or theme so the entire thing feels disjointed and aimless. It even closes with a track that had no business even being considered for the album. It's like a worse Pacific Daydream, taking the same dreary pop aesthetic but instead going 20 different directions with no goal. Weezer Make BelieveWeezer The Green AlbumYou Me At Six Night People1.5 very poorBladee Red LightChicago Chicago VIIIA rather poor album. Each song has that grody 70s rock twang to it that makes the entire thing feel flacid and dated. Ed Sheeran No. 6 Collaborations ProjectI'll defend Multiply and Divide, but there ain't no defending this.
As bad as I expected. Only memorable portions are the opening synth line on "Beautiful People" which then devolves into mediocre nonsense and the closing track BLOW which is honestly pretty solid. Sheeran's vocals during the first verse are pretty great, shame that the entire album holds Sheeran back in order to give spotlight to all of the featured artists which at most times clash in the worst possible way with Sheeran's folk-pop performances. Production is flat and the songwriting mostly devolves to modern pop cliches that simply do not work. Electric Light Orchestra Mr. Blue Sky: The Very Best of Electric Light OrchThe compositions are as great as ever. But... god.. what is this production? It lacks any of the dynamics of their original release sounding more sterile than fresh. This would have been a safe, pointless, but perfectly adequate release if it were just the originals but these remakes just don't cut it. I'd give this a 1.5 but it literally won't let me vote.Fitz and the Tantrums Fitz and the TantrumsGorillaz The FallHans Zimmer The Amazing Spider-Man 2The hardest I've laughed at a movie soundtrack ever.I See Stars The End of the World PartyImagine Dragons OriginsAs an album, it fails on nearly every level. But as Beat Saber maps this rocks. Weird how that works. Imagine Dragons Mercury - Act 1I kinda like the screaming, its raw and different. But the rest is still just *snooze* Knife Party Trigger WarningOn revisit, this is awful. The burnout from Abandon Ship rips through any idea this EP had and shreds it. Plur Police relies on one specific hook for a whopping 4 minutes, nearly 8 if you include the remix. Parliment Funk is fine but feels unfinished with its abstract sputtering drop having little variation during either half of the track. Kraken is forgettable, at points it sounds more like a Tom Staar track, defeating its own purpose entirely. Logic EverybodyLogic's "Everbody" aka "How to Say I'm Bi-Racial in 13 Different Ways"Macklemore GEMINIIt's like if Macklemore took every song from "This Unruly Mess I've Made" and went "Yo, how can I make this 10x worse? Oh wait I got it!" and gave us such classics like "Willy Wonka", whose Blasting trombones sound like a Great Value version of anything Ryan Lewis gave to him. Just awful. Nickelback All the Right ReasonsI actually like Photograph.... but yeah the rest of this is doo-doo. Owl City CinematicYep.Panic! at the Disco Viva Las VengeanceHis smug aura mocks me...
Every song sounds like 25 different better songs blended together into a modern mush of muddy
production and obnoxious Queen worship (coming from someone who enjoys his fair bit of Queen
dreadful vocals, flaccid production, low effort album art.
Only enjoyment is from Mr. Vocalist absolutely bombing these songs live. Absolutely hilarious. Pentatonix Christmas Is Here!about as interesting as old toastPitbull Global WarmingA pretty bad album, but non the less it is indeed a Guilty Pleasure for me.Simple Plan Simple PlanBesides the opening track, which opens the album with a great chorus, the entire thing feels angsty, almost comically so.Soundtrack (Film) Suicide Squad: The AlbumI hate almost every cut here. But damnit, is this not the most 2016 compilation album to ever exist? Heathens and Sucker for Pain reek of that mid 2016's dark-pop synth work I can't help but love it. Starbomb StarbombMost of the comedy comes from "haha thats vulgar! And these are kid games!" and it feels just... really unfunny. Doesn't help I'm not the biggest fan of Arin's comedy style so I'm not particularly the target audience. Visions Of Atlantis Eternal Endless Infinity1.0 awfulAJR NeotheaterThey baaaaaaaaaaaaaaackAJR The ClickIt's like if somebody sucked all the catchy fun likability from Jon Bellion's' "The Human Condition" and replaced it when an airy synth-filled mess with someone constantly going "OHAAHWHAHA" in an obnoxiously high tone.Corey Feldman Angelic 2 The CoreHere is the thing. This album in its current state is godawful, one of the worst released by a known artist. But at the same time, some of the ideas here aren't all that bad. Penultimate track 'Mercy' shows that there is indeed a catchy hook buried beneath the awful production and awful vocals. And that goes too the same for a few of the tracks. Most of the tracks are cliche, but if they were performed my competent artists then MAYBE they would be atleast a solid mainstream pop diversion. As it stands, this album is unlistenable. Danzig Danzig Sings ElvisThis album is so bad it genuinely crashed Spotify once I hit play. DJ Khaled Father of AsahdThis is an albumFalling in Reverse Fashionably LateDAE Play video games?Florida Georgia Line Can't Say I Ain't CountryDon't make me turn this here tractor around... I will!Helloween My God-Given RightWell this is actually quite bad.I See Stars 3DPotentially solid but dated songwriting is ruined by the awful production. I See Stars Green Light Go!The title "Car Alarm Symphony" is about all you need to know. Iced Earth A Narrative SoundscapeI heard about it, I thought "wow that sounds like the project I'm working on. Maybe I shouldn't do mine if it's as shit of an idea as people say" then after listening to this... Nah, idea isn't shit, it's the execution. Quiet ass instrumentals plodding along with dialogie that doesn't build or climax, instead meandering. Sounds like two half finished ideas smashed together for 70 minutes. Not that you should have to explain how to do an album like this to industry professionals.. But typically you, like, use the spoken word passages to accent specific moments and let the music tell the bulk, not just drown what tepid instrumentals there are with so much wordy nonsense you would be mistaken for thinking you accidentally turned on a video essay. Imagine Dragons ÆŽVOLVEBombastic garbageJake Paul and Team 10 LitmasChristmas Coal for all the misbehaving children is taking a much much much worse form this yearJohn Cage 4'33''Awful "experimental" hipster tripe in the purest and most cringe inducing form. Jonas Brothers A Little Bit LongerThat album cover is pretty classy though, you gotta admit.Juice WRLD Death Race For LoveHe really did the Playstation dirty!Kendrick Lamar DAMN. Collector's EditionKid Cudi Speedin' Bullet 2 HeavenLil Pump Harverd DropoutLil Xan TOTAL XANARCHYLogic Supermarket (Soundtrack)Get Litty! Get Get Gritty! Rick Sanchez! Get Shwifty! (Brought to you by Logic)Luke Bryan Tailgates & TanlinesHAHAHAHA "Country Girl Shake it For Me?" What in the hell? This is every stereotype of modern country in one awful package.Maroon 5 Red Pill BluesThose are some F I L T E R E D B O I SNicki Minaj QueenNicki the type of person to whine on Twitter when her album doesn't set the world on fireNostalgia Critic The Walllol.Poppy Music to Scream ToTop 1 "What in the hell" musical decisions in 2020Shawn Mendes IlluminateI really really really dislike this man and his album. Shawn Mendes Shawn MendesShawny Boy is back again with another awful album. Maybe I'm just a party pooper. Soundtrack (Film) Alvin and The ChipmunksJust to think, this nonsense started the late 2000s YouTube trend of "Chipmunk" covers, pretty terrible. Starbomb The TryforceThe Gerogerigegege ShowaI'd rather watch furry pornTrain A Girl A Bottle A BoatTrain Does The Most Recognizable Beginner Piano Melody I Van Halen Van Halen III
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