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Copy? Compliment? Coincidence? Incestuous album covers!

Firstly; if you’re looking at this because of the word ‘incestuous’, shame on you! Anyway, for a variety of reasons, lots of album covers seem to pay tribute to/copy/look like lots of other ones, which is what this is all about. In the early days of…

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WAIT! Best releases of 2015; those glaring omissions in full*

*disclaimer; not in full I somehow forgot these eminently worthy records when compiling my end of year list and I couldn’t leave them out. So much for brevity! Gentlemans Pistols – Hustler’s Row (Nuclear Blast) ‘Retro’ without being an exercise in pure nostalgia, Hustler’s Row was that rare…

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Inevitably, the releases of the year 2015 (grand finale!)

  Kristian Harting – Summer of Crush (Exile on Mainstream) Danish singer-songwriter Kristian Harting’s 2014 debut album, Float, was an intriguing, atmospheric collection of dark and sometimes harrowing but somehow insubstantial (in the ethereal, rather than qualitative sense) songs. Summer of Crush is both more…

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Soft As Snow (But Warm Inside) – “shoegaze” 1988 – 1993

First a note: this is not an exhaustive exploration of the (for want of a better term) shoegaze genre. It’s extremely subjective, being based on my own memories and tastes c.1990-2 and therefore has some glaring omissions (unaccountably I never really heard much of the…

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Inevitably, the releases of the year 2015 (part two)

  Secrets of the Moon – SUN (Lupus Lounge) There is not a lot of emotionally complex black metal music out there; a shame, because the expressive possibilities of the form are arguably greater and more powerful than any other metal genre. Also a shame, because,…

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Inevitably, the releases of the year 2015 (part four)

The penultimate selection of the year’s best releases, I’m thinking there will have to be some ‘honourable mentions’ at the end of the final part! Enslaved – In Times (Nuclear Blast Records) It’s been a long time since Enslaved could be classified as viking metal,…

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La Flamme et le Lys: Métal Noir Québécois

Firstly, the black metal of Québec (at least the black metal I am talking about) has little or nothing to do with Canada. Nothing against Canada (or Canadian metal for that matter), but what makes this scene so distinctive is the backdrop of the history…

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Inevitably, the releases of the year 2015 (part three)

Onwards with more of the best new releases of 2015, as usual in no order, but with the first mentioned especially worthy of earspace… Oblivionized – Life Is A Struggle, Give Up (Secret Law Records) Oblivionized spent the years 2008 – 2013 or so building a…

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Inevitably, the releases of the year, 2015 (part one)

I don’t know yet how many releases of the year I have,  so I am just going to do them in sets of five (or thereabouts) over a few days. I don’t think I have an overall ‘album of the year’ for 2015 so instead I’ll…

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The Lucky Ones Were The First To Die! The 1980s post-Mad Max Apocalypse

However successful George Miller’s 2015 Mad Max movie was, for a variety of reasons it is unlikely to have the impact of the second (and by extension, the far superior first) one did; the release of 1981’s Mad Max 2 (known internationally as The Road Warrior) coincided with the boom…