Archive for the ‘Stone Sour’ Category

The story of the house of gold & bones continues in part 2, the 5th studio album released by the band Stone Sour. It’s the final chapter in the concept album by the Des Moines band, bringing closure to the story and what happens to our friend Allen.

Following the album is a series of 4 comics and what Corey is hoping to be two feature length movies and a tour later this year early next year where the band will be playing both albums back to back over two night with what he says an insane stage production! Personally I cannot wait for all of it! I’m hoping to make my first overseas trip for the Stone Sour tour as well! For a few reasons; none of my friends here care enough to go, I have a friend overseas who would love for me to join her and well I want to go somewhere!

HOGAB 21. ‘Red City’
2. ‘Black John’
3. ‘Sadist’
4. ‘Peckinpah’
5. ‘Stalemate’
6. ‘Gravesend’
7. ’82’
8. ‘The Uncanny Valley’
9. ‘Blue Smoke’
10. ‘Do Me A Favor’
11. ‘The Conflagration’
12. ‘The House Of Gold & Bones’

Unlike part 1, part 2 doesn’t start out heavy and in your face, instead it starts out with just Corey’s voice and soft piano which slowly develops with drums and eventually it become a heavier song, but a slow heavy song. The song casually flows into the next song which is Black John, which is a personal favourite of mine. Black John is a fast paced heavy song with a soft sampled intro of some sort. The style of Corey’s vocals are what I have come to love a lot over the recent years as he has refined his style even more, his aggressive clean vocals during the verses and his melodic soothing vocals during the chorus, he really knows how to use his voice to his advantage.

The song following Black John is ‘Sadist’ starts out as a relatively relaxed song, a ballad almost I guess you could say. It picks up, but it stays mostly relaxed, witch Corey’s soothing melodic vocals through the entire song.

Peckinpah, an interesting title, not sure where Corey came up with the name for that one. Maybe I will ask him when I meet him one day.. If I ever remember or say anything cause I am terrible when I meet my idols. Stone Sour are an interesting band, they can go from a ballad to a heavy fast paced rip your face off song and not bad an eyelid. Peckinpah isn’t exactly that but it has aspects of 2 different songs in one, one moment it’s calm and just a heavy calm song then all of a sudden it’s full of double kick and aggressive vocals. I love it.

The opening to Stalemate is amazing, I love the melody being achieved here by Corey’s vocals! I would say it’s this albums version of Tired, but Tired still wins! Stone Sour don’t have a niche song like some bands do, they can do it all, ballads, heavy, fast, slow, a mixture of all the above and still make it sound like a band that didn’t exist before.

Gravesend there’s something about this song that I cannot pin point. It’s a great song, but there’s something about the groove (I think) of it that is just different from the rest of the songs so far on the album. It’s a good different though.

82, where each line of the lyrics just flow into each other. It’s another favourite song of mine off the album, it was one that just stood out as soon as I heard it.

The Uncanny Valley, another soft/heavy song. I guess Stone Sour are getting comfortable with writing the mix of soft & heavy songs, there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact I think there’s a lack of such songs in metal and when done right they’re great.

Blue Smoke/Do Me A Favor, Blue Smoke is pretty much just a 2 minute intro for Do Me A Favor, the song means nothing on its own but when placed before Do Me A Favor it makes sense and fits! Do Me A Favor the first single from the album, one of the heaviest songs on the album, and another favourite of mine! A catchy tune, but then again I find most Stone Sour songs catchy!

The Conflagration, it rolls in after Do Me A Favor with a drum roll of sorts and piano with Corey backing it with his melodic vocals. It’s a beautiful song.

The House Of Gold & Bones, the final track to this album and the story, fitting to title the last track the same as the albums. It’s a fast paced song, from what I can tell it’s about Allen and his final moments in the house of gold & bones with lyrics like “I gotta do it alone, I will burn alive in the House of Gold and Bones” which makes you think did he just commit suicide? was he murdered? was it him punishing himself for previous actions?

Over all it’s an amazing album. But I can’t rank it better than part 1, maybe because part 1 holds a special place in my heart, but so does part 2 for very similar reasons as well. Actually the exact same reasons to be honest!

But part 1 has my more favourite songs. Sorry Corey I think you were wrong, part 2 isn’t better 😉 It’s part one! But hey part 2 is still amazing and i’ve garnered 50 plays of it since I first got it a week ago today!

So that’s all from me for this little review I guess on the two new albums from Stone Sour!

Stone Sour: a cocktail featuring amaretto liqueur, orange juice and sweet & sour mix, or more commonly known as the heavy metal band from Des Moines, Iowa, formed by Slipknot singer Corey Taylor and guitarist James Root.

I’ve been following Stone Sour since their return in 2002/2003 from their hiatus in 1997 when Corey & James joined Slipknot in 1997 & 1999. Stone Sour has been a big player in my life in shaping me to who I am, I have made some amazing friends via their music. Most recently & notably my friend Kat who is a great person and has been there for me during some tough times of late. Easily Stone Sour would be a top 5 band of mine along with Slipknot & Metallica, those three bands are responsible more than any other band I listen for me being me, I like to think.

Not sure where I am going with this blog, apart from the fact I have been only listening to Stone Sour since I was able to finally see them at Soundwave last Saturday. It’s given me time to reflect how much the band has matured in the last 10 years since their debut self titled album came out. Back then, they were raw, pissed off and wanted to show everyone they were just that. The years to follow they found their sound & style and kept fine tuning it as each album came along. It’s obvious they never wanted to be the same from record to record unlike many bands have done because it’s a fail safe for them and they know it will always be a hit with their fans. But Stone Sour, nope, a mix of heavy, soft and in the middle is what they are and always will be. Some albums feature more heavy Come What(ever) May for example, whilst some feature softer songs like Audio Secrecy whilst still retaining that edge that makes them Stone Sour.

I always thought Audio Secrecy was one of my least favourite Stone Sour album and Come What(ever) May was my most favourite, it wasn’t until I had this discussion with a friend where she opened my eyes and I realised I don’t exactly have a favourite Stone Sour album, because I love them all despite they are all being different in some way from each other, which makes them unique and great. Especially House of Gold & Bones Part 1, I wasn’t in the right state of mind/place at the time when it came out so I never really gave it a proper listen. In fact I was probably in the worst place I had been in quite sometime when that came out back in October last year. Where I wasn’t into listening to much music, I pretty much stuck to listening to Slash, Alter Bridge & RUSH. Thankfully I made a great friend from the Stone Sour forums who helped me through it all.

Stone Sour, Soundwave Feb 23rd 2013

Stone Sour fans, some of them are amazing some of them, well I question if they’re actually fans given how much they bitch about the band. One thing that has always annoyed me about Stone Sour fans is the ones who say “Stone Sour sold out with this radio rock song” I would like to point out that Stone Sour never sold out, well in my opinion they never did since what I govern a sell out is making the same sounding record over and over again to guarantee sales, sure it works for some bands and you don’t want them to change, but for other bands, change is important, and with Stone Sour I think change is crucial. Who cares if the bands new single is a radio friendly song, their other previous singles from the album are definitely a lot heavier and ballsy.

I know I was probably one of those whiny fans at one point, but i’m not any more, i’ve grown up and realised what kind of band Stone Sour is. I don’t think they’re one to conform to what is wanted by the label or society, as much as it looks like it could be that sometimes, I am sure it is not. But also to those saying Stone Sour write radio friendly songs in terms for hits, where’s your logic behind that? Stone Sour has had on at least every album that has been a huge commercial success, whether that was Bother, Through Glass, Hesitate etc. They will always have that one song that will appeal to the masses that lets them discover the band. Which from a commercial standpoint is never a bad thing having more customers.

As I sit here writing this I have Audio Secrecy playing in the background, I decided to give House of Gold & Bones a rest for the moment since I was on my 63rd listen this morning since Soundwave, whoops. I think I know where this is going now, I just wanted to reflect on what Stone Sour means to me and what sort of impact they have had on me throughout my life. It’s been a positive influence, their music has been there through the lowest of lows for me and it’s made me feel not as alone as I would otherwise.

So to end this on a positive note, I just would like to thank those of my friends who I met thanks to Stone Sours music, you guys are truly some of the best people to grace this planet in terms of friends and being loyal to me.

Love you all.

My second time attending the Australian one day festival titled ‘Soundwave’ again I was setting off with my mate Mike. Unlike last year it was just Mike & I this time, no one else! Though I am hoping next year or the year following a dear friend of mine from England might be joining us for Soundwave! The traffic was non existent on the M1 northbound, couldn’t say the same for southbound, sucked to be anyone going south, ha!

So we got to Brisbane found the best parking EVER (5 dollars for 24 hours, BARGAIN!) and it was only a short walk from the showgrounds. We set off to the RNA Showgrounds in anticipation of not missing out on the first bands we want to see Anthrax for me and Dragonforce for Mike. So I made my way to Stage 1A where I planned to be all day, at first I wasn’t sure if I wanted to be in the pit or not, I soon decided that it wasn’t worth NOT being in the pit especially since it wasn’t that full yet and I had plenty of barrier access!

Anthrax!
ANTHRAX!

My first band for the day and a band I have been wanting to see live for years now! Their set was pretty short only 45 minutes, which meant they only had time for about 5 or 7 songs 😦 and most of the material came from Among The Living, I was hoping more from Spreading The Disease and Worship Music (their latest album) they also threw in their cover of AC/DC’s T.N.T which was a really awesome cover, just a shame the crowd wasn’t that enthusiastic. My only issue with Anthrax’s set was Joey’s microphone was pretty damn quiet compared to everyone else, also fill in guitarist Jon Donais from Shadows Fall lead was almost unheard in the mix, which was a disappointment. Jon Dette (former Slayer drummer) was filling in for Charlie Benante who sadly had to sit out due to personal reasons, but he stepped up and did an amazing job.

Anthrax’s set as follows (from memory)
Caught in a Mosh
Fight ‘Em ‘Til You Can’t
Antisocial
Indians
Hymn 1 (played over PA)
In the End
T.N.T.
I Am the Law

It was a pretty good set, but I wasn’t that familiar/a fan of most songs they played. I wanted to hear more from the new album and some from Spreading The Disease.

Stone Sour!
STONE SOUR!

I’ve been a fan of this band since they reformed back in 2002/2003 and have wanted to see them live ever since, and yesterday was my chance I wasn’t going to let that slip through my fingers! I was in the same spot where I was for Anthrax, right on the barrier stage right (left of the stage if you’re looking at it) or Josh Rands side if you’ve been to a Stone Sour show before. I was pumped to see them, probably more excited for them than I was Metallica. The set opened with Gone Sovereign and into Absolute Zero the two opening tracks off their new album House of Gold & Bones Part 1. So much energy from Corey, he also sounded PHENOMENAL! Everytime I see him his voice has gotten better, I thought he couldn’t top it with Slipknot last year with his vocals, but I was wrong! His voice is like a fine wine gets better with age.

The band went onto play Mission Statement followed by two new songs, then the obligatory playing of Through Glass which actually brought a tear to my eye and reminded me of those amazing friends I have met thanks to Stone Sour, it was beautiful. It was at that point where Josh attempted to throw a pick to me and the girl next to me, but landed short next to the security guard who wasn’t exactly helpful (he redeemed himself later that night though by giving me a Metallica beach ball) he threw the picks deeper into the crowd. Oh well!

The band closed on their highly energetic song 30-30/150 which in a sense means a lot to me, since I had printed on the back of my year 12 jersey in high school. Over all it was an amazing set, I just wish they had a 90 minute set or something. Given the band A Perfect Circle were dead boring and did not fit being on Soundwave. As usual Corey was great with the crowd, he’s a real character live. He’s fun and knows how to interact with a crowd. This picture here is possibly my favourite that I took all day, and it just so happens to be of Corey Taylor throwing water at me.

Corey Taylor

It’s just an awesome action shot of Corey, one that I am quite proud of.

The setlist for their 45 minute set was as follows, some stuff maybe out of order though.

Gone Sovereign
Absolute Zero
Mission Statement
A Rumor of Skin
RU486
Through Glass
Reborn
Say You’ll Haunt Me
30/30-150

Slayer
SLAYER!

It was time for the band I was rather sceptical to see after the weeks events with drummer Dave Lombardo. So I wasn’t going to go to their stage and lose my awesome Metallica spot. I was genuinely excited to see Slayer, but I had been feeling it less and less as the day progressed. Not that Jon Dette who replaced Dave isn’t a bad drummer, he’s actually quite great was just the fact it was Tom & Kerry being the only 2 original members in Slayer at the moment which was a real let down, since Kerry is dead on stage and Tom, whilst he is awesome it’s obvious he’s been feeling it less and less these days. Where as Jeff & Dave always came off as the life of the band and with them both not present it sucks. Though Gary Holt (Exodus) and Jon Dette (former Slayer) were great live.

Slayer opened with Disciple, fucking killer. Jon’s double kicks were powerful, so much so it actually hurt. They played all their hits, which was cool. The crowd seemed to love them. I seemed to ruin a blokes day who was handing out the wrist bands telling him that Dave wasn’t present, sorry dude!

The thing I was sorely unimpressed with Slayer was Toms vocals were soft and Gary’s leads were not mixed into both channels making it look like his guitar was turned right down. We finally heard him on the left side of the arena during their 3 encore songs. But other than that all you could hear was Kerry King which was pretty boring, might I say..

Slayers set was something a bit like this, there’s either something missing or it’s out of order.

Disciple
Die by the Sword
War Ensemble
Chemical Warfare
Altar of Sacrifice
Jesus Saves
Mandatory Suicide
Seasons in the Abyss
Dead Skin Mask
Angel of Death
South of Heaven
Raining Blood

Then it was a painstakingly long wait for Metallica had to put up with some band I had never heard of “A Perfect Circle” who were dead boring and had no idea how to interact with the crowd or themselves. The singer also looked like he was coked out of his mind. Linkin Park then came on afterwards, they’re okay, but i’m not a huge fan of them they have a few alright songs.

METALLICA!

It was now time for the biggest band in the world, that’s right the band 50,000 odd people came to see, Metallica. The band opened with Hit The Lights which sent the crowd INSANE, myself included. They then went into Master of Puppets, possibly their best song ever written. They ran through a few older songs from Justice & Puppets before playing something a little newer Fuel, when James sung the line “Gimme Fuel, Gimme Fire, Gimme That Which I desire” the entire back of the stage lit up in flames from the pyro. You could feel the heat 30 odd metres away at the barrier, it was something. Cyanide followed Fuel, it was also the only song off Death Magnetic they played which sucked cause I like a few other songs off that and the EP as well. During Cyanide the camera guy who was positioned front of the stage went down along the barrier 3 or 4 times during the song, broad coast everyone who came into view up on the massive screen at the back of the stage, of course I got a bit of screen time which ended up being texted by a bunch of mates who were also there saying they saw me. There’s also a blurry as fuck picture circulating facebook!

After Cyanide it was some older tunes then intermission, which was followed by a short videoclip and then the gun fire started.. Yep, it was the intro to One. The whole stage was lit up with all sorts pyrotechnics from small charges, all the way upto fireworks lighting up the sky, it was spectacular. As the smoke cleared James entered and started playing the opening riff to One. The band powered through another 4 songs before ending on Enter Sandman which ended in James on the stage floor with the cameraman zooming into his guitar pick which had a special design for the Australian tour, which consisted of an Australian flag one side with Metallica 2013 and the other side a map of Australia with Australia in the Metallica font with a Kangaroo with a skull and horns.

After that the band left the stage, only to have AC/DC’s ‘It’s A Long Way To The Top’ play over the PA whilst the band went to prepare for their encore of three songs. Their encore consisted of Creeping Death, Battery & Seek & Destroy. The final song of the night Seek & Destroy was energetic as all hell, during the set the Metallica crew threw Metallica branded beach balls into the crowd and more descended from the top of the stage! It was truly a great way to end the night. After the show was over, that wasn’t it, the band came back out with plastic cups full of guitar picks for us! And Lars have out a dozen or so drum sticks. It was really awesome to see a band of their stature put so much effort into giving back to their fans.

Metallica’s set as taken from Metallica.com was as follows.

Hit the Lights
Master of Puppets
The Shortest Straw
Harvester of Sorrow
Welcome Home (Sanitarium)
Fuel
Cyanide
Sad but True
Fade to Black
…And Justice for All
One
For Whom the Bell Tolls
Blackened
Nothing Else Matters
Enter Sandman

Encore:
Creeping Death
Battery
Seek & Destroy

After that we made the timely walk back to the car to head home. It was great cause all we had to do was get in the car and drive out. No waiting around for an hour to pay for parking, downside no talking to cute girls, but we all have to make sacrifices. So we hit the highway and went south first stopping at Yatala for food, but it was too packed with people from Soundwave so we thought fuck that! and decided on Coomera about 10-15 minutes down the road. Which was a smart move there was next to no one there at all! We got some “food” and then went on our merry way at this point it was 1am and we were both buggered, it was a long day and we just wanted sleep. I got home around 1:45am and promptly passed out after texting a friend to let her know I was home safe.

And what I scored from Metallica/my ticket/time table/wrist band for the day.

Stuff!

2013 is quite the year for bands that I love, it’s possibly going to be a bigger year for me musically than last year was, and last year was pretty fucking amazing I must say.

But why is 2013 so big you ask? For a start there’s a new Black Sabbath album?! BLACK FUCKING SABBATH! Sadly it’s only Ozzy, Geezer & Tony touring and doing the album since Bill Ward couldn’t get the contract he wanted or something, i’m not going to go into that since it’s a touchy subject AND it’s a grey area in my opinion.

So first up for 2013 was Bad Religion, I had forgotten they had an album in the works! I also didn’t realise it was released the day before my birthday on January 22nd! I still need to listen to the album, I assume it’ll be typical Bad Religion, but also decent.

Next up for 2013 is Australia guitar virtuoso/rock/pop chick Orianthi, if you do not know who this beautiful, talented and badass guitar chick is from Adelaide, I highly suggest you check out her first TWO albums, Violet Journey & Believe, both very different but both awesome in their own right. She’s also the lead guitarist for Alice Cooper, and Alice doesn’t pick shit musicians. Her new album Heaven in this Hell is due out end of February I cannot wait, i’ve heard a few tracks and they’re clearly more rock n’ roll, the debut single Frozen has a very Hendrix feel to it. Which ain’t a bad thing!

The third album on my radar due for 2013 is David Bowie’s ‘The Next Day’ on March 8th this is his first album since Reality in 2003. I am excited for this, I love Bowie, even if his post 80’s music never appealed to me. But he’s David freaking Bowie, he’s not someone you forget about or not know about. The first single he released from it was Where Are We Now, not a bad song, very Bowie-like in my opinion, the video clip was certainly different to what I was expecting, but it’s Bowie he can do what he damn well likes.

Now Wednesday 13 is meant to be releasing his new solo album ‘The Dixie Dead’ sometime in February or March, there is no confirmed date yet which is sad. I love Wednesday, he’s the artist I believe everyone should look upto. He’s independent of a label, he doesn’t fuck around releasing music, he stays active with THREE side projects, one being Murderdolls which is what gave him the fan base he has. Also he’s a great bloke to his fans.

Stone Sour! Their 2nd part of The House of Gold & Bones duo album. They’re the 2nd band in the last year which I list to to release a multi-part album, Green Day was the other one who released THREE albums within 3 months. I am excited for the second part of this album, I love Stone Sour and I really liked the first part. They’re another band which I cannot fault with their releases.

Daft Punk, i’m not a fan of any kind of electro music, but who doesn’t love Daft Punk?! Especially if you grew up as kid in the 90’s like I did. So i’ll give that a listen, plus they’re the masters of the genre, it’s a fact.

Black Sabbath, the bands first album with Ozzy Osbourne since 1978 when he was booted from the band and replaced with the now late Ronnie James Dio. I am hoping this is true vintage Sabbath and not modern day solo Ozzy. I also hope to see them on tour this year, but that’s looking slim to none sadly. The only gripe I have with the new Sabbath album is it’s titled ’13’ they could’ve been more original than that haha.

That’s it for confirmed albums that are coming out this year; now onto what Wikipedia has as unconfirmed for this year.

AC/DC, being an Aussie I think it’s part of our constitution that I have to love our biggest musical act. But damn AC/DC are so simple, but it goes to show simple sells and they have their formula mastered! I hope they do release an album this year, that would be amazing.

Alter Bridge, it’s known that Myles, Mark, Scott & Brian are off in Tampa (I think) currently writing & constructing the new Alter Bridge album, I only learnt of this band in recent times, about 4 years ago, but I love them, they’re an amazing modern day rock band who deserve every bit of recognition they get. They’re also phenomenal live. I hope the new album is out this year, I need more music sung by Myles Kennedy with his amazing voice.

Anthrax, I believe they have an EP coming out with a bunch of cover, which will be awesome. I love Joey Belladonnas voice and welcome more stuff with him singing on it!

Deep Purple, this band are the reason why keyboards and organs are cool in rock & metal, thank you Jon Lord. I hope they still have it even with out Ritchie Blackmore behind guitar & the late Jon Lord on keyboards.

Dream Theater, not a huge fan but their last release was a pretty solid album, one of my favourites of 2011.

Eminem, like electro not a fan of rap or hip hop, but Eminem, I have a soft spot for the white boy who made it in a black man’s game. Also I grew up hearing his music on the television & radio and it stuck with me, also he does great parody songs, which is what the world needs.

Iron Maiden, another reason why heavy metal exists. All the best bands that started heavy metal were British, it’s a fact! Their last album The Final Frontier was true modern Iron Maiden, I loved it. Was possibly the release I was most excited for in 2010. Can’t wait for more from the metal gods.

Katy Perry & Lady Gaga, it’s true I have a soft spot for their catchy pop songs. Also both are relatively good looking women, can you blame a guy for liking a popstar who dresses in scantily clad clothes and sings about kissing girls or other sexual things? I can’t.

King Diamond, the guy who dresses and looks like a gothic vampire who will suck your blood and then proceed to eat your liver with fava beans who has an incredibly amazing high falsetto voice. His solo work isn’t bad, I wouldn’t say he’s a favoruite but i’ll keep watch on what he releases for sure. Now how about a Mercyful Fate reunion?

Megadeth, it’s already known that paranoid Dave & crew have finished recording and are currently mixing the new album, hopes are that it’s not all about the gov’t are mind controlling us and all these other crazy conspiracies Mr. Mustaine manages to dream up.

Motörhead, Lemmy, love him or well fuck off. He’s Lemmy he is god. Motörhead are like AC/DC they have not changed their sound in 40 years, they don’t care. They’re one of the loudest bands on the planet, ZZ Top being one of the others. I absolutely loved Motörhead’s last studio effort, it was a top notch record.

Rob Zombie, he’s confirmed that he’s got a new album in the works, I liked Hellbilly Deluxe 2, though I hope his musical abilities haven’t taken a dive like his movie making skills look to have. *cough*Lords of Salem*cough*

Sixx:A.M. I found out the other that Nikki Sixx is writing his third album with his side project, hey Nikki Motley Crue needs a new fucking album since it’s been 5 fucking years already, one album in THIRTEEN YEARS from the band that made Glam Metal what it is, is PATHETIC. But I do look forward to another Sixx:A.M. record.

Slayer, Kerry King keeps saying that it’s coming, yeah and so is the impending doom of this world, Kerry. Recwntly he said he has no idea how Jeff Hanneman is doing in terms of rehab after he managed to get bitten by possibly a spider and contracted necrotizing fasciitis. I hope Jeff is well and able to play again, it would be a shame to see him have to hang up his guitar and leave Slayer, after Dave Lombardo he’s the main driving force musically in my opinion behind the band.

That’s pretty much it for what I am expecting in 2013 musically so far, who knows another band I love might end up with another album out this year, Dope would be awesome to an album by maybe even Airbourne or Bowling For Soup.

2012 was a great year for music, especially for the bands that defined the genres of music they helped shape. So here’s my top 10 albums of 2012!

10. ¡Uno! – Green Day.
¡Uno! Now most of my friends know I use to be a massive Green Day fan, I eventually grew out of them in a sense, especially when 21st Century Breakdown was released, I did not like that album one little. I learnt not too long before the release of ¡Uno! that Green Day was doing a 3 album release this year, so I thought I’d check it out, thinking it might bring me back as a fan. For their modern sound it’s pretty good, it’s definitely my choice out of the three releases from them. It’s earned it’s place at number 10 on my list.

 

9. Music From Another Dimension! – Aerosmith
Music From Another Dimension Aerosmith, they have been a staple band to Rock N’ Roll since 1970, they have released some classic songs like Walk This Way, Dream On & Sweet Emotion. They’re back with their 15th album, which is mile ahead of their previous releases. In my opinion, their best since Permanent Vacation. I was cautious with this release given they were once again working with outside writers. I was quite impressed with what they released, especially after hearing the first single Legendary Child. It’s a solid release from a band who should never had a crap release in the first place.

 
8. A Different Kind Of Truth – Van Halen
A Different Kind Of Truth Van Halen’s first studio effort in close to 15 years and their first in over 20 with David Lee Roth! It was great to see DLR back at the front of Van Halen, after all it’s what made Van Halen, Van Halen apart from Eddie’s guitar playing, was Dave’s voice & showmanship. I was glad they released this album, since it has possibly one of my favourite rock songs of all times on it, Blood and Fire. It proved even without Michael Anthony on backing vocals & bass the band could still power on. I also think that Wolfgang Van Halen, is quite an acceptable replacement, that kid can play bass like no one’s business!

 
7. House Of Gold & Bones Part 1 – Stone Sour
House of Gold & Bones Part 1Stone Sour, i’ve loved this band since their self titled release in 2003. What wasn’t to love from that release, it was heavy & angry. It appealed to the teenager in me! Also it had swearing, I liked swearing. This is Stone Sours 4th studio release and is part of a 2 album release. It’s a concept album, no doubt about that, it tells a story. I’m pretty impressed with it, I’ve listened to it a lot of often than I did with Audio Secrecy, which is weird considering I loved Audio Secrecy. As much as the band changes from release to release, they still seem to keep some of that original charm that made me love them.

 
6. Last Of A Dyin’ Breed – Lynyrd Skynyrd
Last Of A Dyin' BreedLynyrd Skynyrd, one of the few bands to lose a lead singer and manage to carry on and keep building a fan base. I’ve not been the biggest Skynyrd fan, I do like their staple songs, Tuesday’s Gone, Freebird, Sweet Home Alabama etc.. But this album really struck a note with me. From hearing the title track of the album I was hooked. I didn’t think Skynyrd would be a band I would ever get into properly, but weirder things have happened with me & my taste in music. As I said up there, 2012 is for sure the year for those who helped define & shaped Rock N’ Roll & their respective genres.

 
5. La Futura – ZZ Top
La FuturaThe little band from Texas as they’re sometimes referred to. Billy & Dusty both look like they could be part of an Outlaw Motorcycle Gang with those beards. I was really impressed with this album, it was more of the ZZ Top I know than what they have put out in the past, spanning from new wave to dance rock (KISS anyone?) but this time it’s more the blues/rock groove of where they started. It’s definitely one of my more favourite releases from ZZ Top and of bands this year.

 
 
4. Clockwork Angels – RUSH
Clockwork AngelsThey were a band I only started listening to in the last few years, it’s something I sorely regret, since this trio can not put out a dud album. With Geddy Lee’s vocals & amazing bass skills, Neil Pearts drumming & song writing & Alex Lifeson’s guitar playing it’s a recipe for success. Clockwork Angels is the bands 19th release.. As usual they nail the whole concept album and telling a story. It also features in a few songs a full string section, which compliments the songs rather nicely. I would never have thought at the start of the year I would be placing this album so high up, but I have.

 
3. spook & Destroy EP – Wednesday 13
Spook & Destroy EPI know, I know it’s an EP (extended play) but I had to mention it, it’s a great 8 track EP by Wednesday, even if 3 are old songs redone and 3 are remixes with 2 brand new songs! It’s Wednesday 13, I don’t care i’ve supported his solo career where ever possible. I own all his solo releases, I don’t pirate his work, I attend his shows where I can, I also buy his merch! The two new songs remind of Wednesday 13 (yes I am still sour about Skeletons because it was too personal) Halloween 13-13 has a great tune to it, for some reason I just really like it.

 
 
2. All I Was – Tremonti
TremontiMark Tremonti of Alter Bridge and sadly of Creed fame more so. He’s a phenomenal guitarist and to a lesser degree song writer, though he’s still pretty good at that. I wasn’t sure what to make of this project of his, but I thought i’d check it out anyway and for a debut album it’s solid. I hope he puts out more badass metal tunes like this. Also he has a pretty damn good singing voice. It wasn’t until recently I noticed he shared vocal duties on “Words Darker Than Their Wings” with Myles on ABIII.5. Over all it’s a great album and well worthy of my #2 spot. But I kind of have a soft spot for Mark and his work especially with Alter Bridge.
 
1. Apocalyptic Love – Slash Featuring Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators
Apocalyptic LoveTo anyone that knows me this should not be a surprise, given my love I have for this album, Slash & Myles Kennedy. It’s just the greatest rock album of the last 15 years or there abouts, maybe longer. I know a lot of people hate this album and call Slash a sell out for it, I don’t understand why. It’s a Rock N’ Roll album, it’s Slash, one of the more dedicated and better guitar players out there still doing what he loves. Slash has already stated he’s working on his next release with his current line up. I can’t wait for it, if it’s half as good as Apocalyptic Love then it will be awesome. it has also some great songs like Bad Rain, Apocalyptic Love, One Last Thrill & Anastasia (a real personal favourite)

Looking back whilst there were not many releases I got this year, there were still some amazing releases! Notably those I mentioned here. Even if most were from bands & artists before my time, it goes to show they haven’t gone out of style/lost it with old age.

This is my last post for 2012, see you all in the new year or something to that effect!