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Author Topic: 2011 Album Releases (The Yearly Rankings)  (Read 19744 times)
i_am_fabio
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« on: December 27, 2011, 05:46:21 am »

What are your favorite albums released during the 2011 calendar year? I'm currently brainstorming my take on the rankings for 2011 albums. While i take my time to rank this years releases let's see what you all thought of music this year. Do a top 5, top 10, top 20.....whatever you'd like. 
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tauros81
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« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2011, 11:24:48 am »

My 2011 top 16:

1 - Within Temptation - The Unforgiving
The year is almost over, and i have not heard anything i like better yet.

Best song of the album (for me): In the Middle of the Night
Second Best : Sinéad
Third Best : Faster

2 - Alestorm - Back Through Time

Best song: Scraping The Barrel

3 - Nightwish - Imaginaerum

Best song: Storytime

4 - Wildpath - Underneath

Best song: Crystallized

5 - Ancient Bards - Soulless Child

Best song: Valiant Ride

6 - Jelonek - Revenge

Best song: Romantic Revenge

7 - Trillium - Alloy

Best song: Mistaken

8 - Pain - You Only Live Twice

Best song: The Great Pretender

9 - Stream of Passion - Darker Days

Best song (kinda hard, since they're all good): Reborn

10 - ISSA - The Storm
Guilty Pleasures. We all have them. I like Issa... SHUT UP!

Best song: Black Clouds

11 - Nemesea - The Quiet Resistance

Best song: Afterlife

12 - Krypteria - All Beauty Must Die

Best song: Victoria

13 - Stratovarius - Elysium

Best song: Darkest Hours

14 - Visions Of Atlantis - Delta

Best song: Memento

15 - Sirenia - The Enigma Of Life

Best song: This Lonely Lake

16 - Leaves' Eyes - Meredead

Best song: Velvet Heart
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Guidrummist
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« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2011, 03:48:02 pm »

I'm still working on my own list, but I thought I'd put up the All Music Guide list of Best Metal Albums of 2011 in the meantime. Something to look at and think about. How does their list compare with yours?
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« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2011, 05:06:51 am »

I'm still working on my own list, but I thought I'd put up the All Music Guide list of Best Metal Albums of 2011 in the meantime. Something to look at and think about. How does their list compare with yours?

Well...um...they don't compare very well as I have heard next to nothing on that allmusic list.

Making a late run for me though is Imaginaerum which I only just got and have listened to exactly one time. However, I can imagine myself listening to it many more times.  Cheesy
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Guidrummist
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« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2011, 07:11:07 pm »

This was a good year for music, in my opinion. I couldn't even figure out ranking, so I've just got music sorted into stuff that might/does fit in here, and stuff that doesn't.

Not ERR-Friendly

•Black Country Communion - 2
Classic hard rock in the style of Deep Purple meets Led Zeppelin. Given the band members involved, it's no surprise this sounds so good.

•Derek Sherinian - Oceana
Prog-fusion from the ex-Dream Theater keyboardist. He and his various guests dial back the metal influence from previous albums, but the result is still great music.

•Last Chance to Reason - Level 2
A prog-metal concept album with electronic and jazzy influence. Fans of Cynic and Between the Buried and Me will love this sophomore effort.

•Lettuce - Rage
Super-groovy funk and soul.

•Magic Pie - The Suffering Joy
Classic prog-rock with a slight modern edge.

•Steve Reich - WTC 9/11, Mallet Quartet, Dance Patterns
One of the masters of minimalism continues to do his thing, and to do it as well as ever. WARNING: Don't listen to the first 3 tracks if audio from/about terrorist attacks in New York is particularly traumatic to you.

•Ten - Stormwarning
Symphonic hard rock is a pretty cool idea, and as far as I know, these are the only guys doing it. Mark Zonder (ex-Fates Warning) is a great addition on drums. Lots of great melodies and arrangements all over the place.

•Tony Macalpine - Tony Macalpine
Incredible shredding on both guitar and keyboard, accompanied by the powerhouse rhythm section of Philip Bynoe on bass and Marco Minneman and Virgil Donati on drums. Nevertheless, Macalpine doesn't forget that a good melody is what counts.

•Unexpect - Fables of the Sleepless Empire
Throw together every subgenre of metal, 2 or 3 different classical traditions, some jazz, funk, electronic, and showtunes, mix them all up, and it might sound like Unexpect. As long as you remember to make really good songs out of it.

•Julia Wolfe - The String Quartets
Three excellent string quartets from one of the leading post-minimalists. I wonder if it says more about my tastes, or about the state of art-music this year, that the only art-music releases to make the list were chamber music in the minimalist tradition.


ERR-Freindly

•Ancient Bards - Soulless Child
The drama heightens as motifs from the first album recombine in new and exciting ways and meet new material. Plus, you know, the actual plot thickens too.

•Dibbukim - Az a Foygl un a Goylem Tantsn
The second-ever folk-metal album to be recorded with lyrics entirely in Yiddish, this features a combination of standards and originals.

•Falconer - Armod
Falconer goes to their roots and records an album entirely in their native tongue. They also step up the heaviness on some songs and the folkiness on others. I don't understand a word of it, but it sounds great!

•Gevolt - AlefBase
The first-ever Yiddish folk-metal album could be described in much the same way as the second, except it has more electronic elements in the mix, leading some listeners to compare it to Rammstein. I'm not sure I agree, but it's an interesting thought.

•Mystic Prophecy - Ravenlord
This might be the heaviest power metal album ever recorded, and that's pretty cool.

•Myrath - Tales of the Sands
Recorded on winter nights in Tunis, this album is literally the soundtrack to a revolution.

•Redemption - This Mortal Coil
Really heavy. Really proggy. Nice and melodic. Lots of top-notch musicianship. The band's best album yet. What more could you ask for?

Honorable Mentions
These are the 2011 albums that I found to either be very good throughout, or to have moments of brilliance balanced by sojourns in relative mediocrity.
In a less-outstanding year, many or all of them would have made the list proper, rather than be relegated to this castoff catagory.

•Dragonland - Under the Grey Banner
•Dream Theater - A Dramatic Turn of Events
•Evergrey - Glorious Collision
•Mastodon - The Hunter
•Pestilence - Doctrine
•Royal Hunt - Show Me How to Live
•Symphony X - Iconoclast
•Theocracy - As the World Bleeds
•Twins Crew - Judgement Night

EDIT: got to have my honorable mentions!
« Last Edit: January 03, 2012, 08:17:41 am by Guidrummist » Logged

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i_am_fabio
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« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2011, 03:06:28 pm »

Great lists my friends!

You have me intrigued about the band Last Chance to Reason. Sounds like something i would love! Just added it to my Ipod via Rhapsody. Also will have to check out new Tony MacAlpine, Magic Pie, Nightwish and Ancient Bards.

I agree that this was a fantastic year for new music. So much good stuff that it's really tough to put it in any kind of order. I just compiled a list of stuff i have checked out this year and the list tops 50! Rhapsody (the music service, not the EPIC band) has really helped me be able to check out a ton more new releases then ever before. In the past i could only check out 10-20 due to a lack of funds and my refusal to download illegally. But now i can check out so much new stuff and then make the extra effort to purchase the stuff that i really enjoy.

My list is coming soon......
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The Eagle Warrior
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« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2011, 04:50:20 pm »

My Top 10 -

1. Turisas - Stand Up and Fight
2. Voyager - The Meaning of I
3. Taberah - The Light of Which I Dream    http://www.metal-archives.com/bands/Taberah/83941
4. Megadeth - Th1rt3en
5. Opeth - Heritage
6. Mastodon - The Hunter
7. Alestorm - Back Through Time
8. Pegazus - In Metal We Trust    http://www.metal-archives.com/bands/Pegazus/196
9. Whitesnake - Forevermore
10. Edguy - The Age of the Joker


My favourite album cover art  of 2011 would be Royal Hunt - "Show Me How To Live".

« Last Edit: January 02, 2012, 09:07:31 pm by The Eagle Warrior » Logged
Guidrummist
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« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2011, 08:29:24 pm »

My favourite album cover art  of 2011 would be Royal Hunt - "Show Me How To Live".
Mine is Iron Savior - The Landing

« Last Edit: January 01, 2012, 04:18:15 am by Guidrummist » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2012, 01:38:28 am »

It's my favorite too.
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i_am_fabio
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« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2012, 12:22:42 am »

Just so you all don't give up on my much anticipated list for 2011 albums  Grin, i just wanted to jump in and say that i am finalizing it right now. Gonna put them in some kind of order and write a little something about my favorites. Should be posted in the next couple days. So you can now rest easy knowing that you will get it very soon. I'm sure you are all on the edge of your seats!  Cheesy

Here's one that will be on my list:



^^^Awesome Stuff!
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i_am_fabio
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« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2012, 11:43:11 pm »

I've included official videos for each release in case you need to check something out. The ones that did not release a video just got a random song chosen by yours truly. Enjoy!

My Top 12 Albums of 2011:

Protest the Hero - "Scurillous"


Another stellar effort from prog metal maniacs PTH. This go around they have almost completely abandoned the growling/screaming and it feels even more melodic than before. The ability to play such cool and technical stuff but still manage to create awesome melodic songs is where these guys set themselves apart from most. Some may be turned off by this guys vocal style....luckily i am not! Thus, letting me enjoy the fantastic music from this band once again.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vKZ-eKBJ9dw



Rhapsody "From Chaos To Eternity"


An end of an era! Rhapsody wrap up the saga with another album that soars above most earthly creations. As usual, Fabio sounds amazing. The guy is just a beast behind the microphone. Luca shreds as you would expect with really nice additional lead work from their new guitarist Tom Hess. This is another great album by the then rejuvinated RoF. Hopefully we will continue to hear great music coming out of both camps after the split. Wish i could have seen them live one time before the split.  
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2bUSSn1YuI


Myrath "Tales Of The Sands"


A band that i could not fully get into with their first 2 albums for one reason or another.  But 3rd times a charm i guess....because this album is great! It seems like they finally figured out how to incorporate their Oriental roots in a way that doesn't sound forced to me. The singer has improved tremendously to my ears and the songs are just catchy and very memorable. Look forward to the next chapter from these guys.  
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iTUx86C7DwU


Insomnium "One For Sorrow"


Melodic Death Metal that everybody can enjoy! At least i hear it that way. Fans of Amon Amarth or Amorphis (just being 2 bands that i thought folks at ERR would recognize) should check this out asap. Insomnium has that Epic feeling thoughout their music that even if you are not a big growling vocals lover you can still embrace what goes on within this album looking past the vocals.  
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ns9_A3CKqPM&feature=related


Unexpect "Fables of the Sleepless Empire"


Pure chaos.....in a good way! As all over the place as could possibly be musically, but still they manage to create songs that flow perfectly. For the adventurous music lover i highly recommend checking this one out.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2k0f-ZxRJ_A



Wolverine - "Communication Lost"


Cold, Dark, Melodic, Haunting, Depressing. These words i would use to describe this album.....and i LOVE IT! I had always heard of this band here and there on the internet but never really gave them a listen until now. If you are a power metal freak who needs their music fast and in your face.....just skip to the next album description on my list. But if you are a fan of well written progressive rock with metal tendancies, great vocals, and meaningful lyrics then this album is worth checking out. The melodies on this one will haunt you for hours after listening. Great stuff!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ng6-jUuGzX8&feature=related

« Last Edit: January 16, 2012, 11:46:57 pm by i_am_fabio » Logged

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i_am_fabio
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« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2012, 11:45:23 pm »


Borealis - "Fall From Grace"


Fantastic sophmore album released by the boys from the North! Songs that will kick your ass and have you banging your head.......song after song after song! Power Metal with a punch of prog. The vocalist really shines on this one for me. Although his range isn't as wide as other singers in the genre, he makes up for it by matching the feelings of the songs perfectly. If they would dumb it down just a bit for the everyday rock fan i could see them getting mainstream attention with this sound going forward. Fantastic album that may have gotten more spins by me than any disc in 2011.  
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I79UW4eCs5g


Pagan's Mind - "Heavenly Ecstasy"


The boys in PM go even further into a melodic direction. I sure do miss the proggy days of 'Celestial Entrance' and 'Enigmatic Calling'.....but i have to enjoy this for what it is......REALLY GOOD STUFF! Jorn Viggo can still put together some amazing guitar moments that force me to play the air guitar in my most passionate air guitar mode. Fans of their last album 'God's Equation' will likely eat this one up even more.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHAoHifynHM
 

Omnium Gatherum - "New World Shadows"


Melodic Death Metal just the way i like it. If you have not heard this one then i suggest you find it and do so. I took the following quote from their website and it pretty much suums up how i hear this album: "This is for sure the great northern death metal without limitations - really melodic and intelligent but still aggressive and heavy as a really heavy thing, aside quoting feels from prog rock to even AOR - this is adult oriented death metal in it's most epic & purest form!"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_wwnGrRraU


Redemption - "This Mortal Coil"


Nick and the boys have done it again. Created an album that i know will be something that i grab for years into the future. Nick van Dyk is the best lyric writer in the business for my money. I will blind buy his albums till the day he stops making music. Everytime i listen to one of his albums with the lyric booklet in hand i get goosebumps countless times. The ability to connect with the listener through his songwriting and lyrics is unmatched. After battling blood cancer for 3 years (and coming out on top for now) he returns with an album angrier yet more emotional than ever.  
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FAc4P4Vq_rI&feature=related


Dream Theater - "A Dramatic Turn of Events"


I think this is my favorite DT album since "Awake"! This album shows me that Portnoy leaving was a great thing. I always liked Portnoy. Thought he was a great promoter for Progressive Metal. But after hearing this album i am happy that he backed himself (much to his dismay) out of the band. If not for a couple songs that i don't care for much, this album might be right up there with my #1 album for 2011. Songs like 'Bridges..', 'Breaking..' and 'Outcry' make this an instant classic from the DT clan.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28MmnThlYOo


Dragonland - "Under The Grey Banner"


This is how i like my power metal! With enough progressive tendancies to keep it from being too repetitive in style, but still that over the top bombastic feel that only great power metal can give you. Fantastic guest singers shoot this album towards the top for 2011. Like the Fairyland disc from 2010 this was the pleasant surprise i have been waiting for in the power metal genre. Just got this one a couple weeks ago and it's still fresh in heavy rotation. So maybe it's placement has that advantage. But regardless, this is a damn good album.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1jOn2CRDVw0


Leprous - "Bilateral"


My favorite release of the year. Every song feels different! Every song is fantastic! Has all the aspects that i currently love in my music mixed together in a nearly perfect combination. This is a young band who i look forward to hearing from for years to come. Do yourself a favor and check this out if you are a music fan and not afraid of occasional rough vocals.  
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=986iAyQpr1U
« Last Edit: January 16, 2012, 11:48:08 pm by i_am_fabio » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2012, 11:50:25 pm »

The top tier albums that just missed my "Top 12":

Symphony X "Iconoclast"
Lost in Thought "Opus Arise"
The Human Abstract "Digital Veil"
Haken "Visions"
Circles "The Compass"
TesseracT "One"
The Dear Hunter "The Color Spectrum"
Devin Townsend Band "Deconstruction"
Textures "Dualism"
Andromeda "Manifest Tyranny"



Other albums that i have checked out and enjoyed from 2011:

Steve Hackett "Beyond the Shrouded Horizon"
Work of Art "In Progress"
Voyager "The Meaning of I"
Scar Symmetry "The Unseen Empire"
Anubis Gate "Anubis Gate"
Eumeria "Rebel Mind"
Jolly "The Audio Guide To Happiness"
Decapitated "Carnival is Forever"
Iced Earth "Dystopia"
Toby Hitchcock "Mercury's Down"
Amorphis "Beginning of Times"
Evergrey "The Glorious Collision"
Iron Savior "The Landing"
Trivium "In Waves"
Machine Head "Unto the Locust"
Opeth "Heritage"
Blotted Science "The Animation of Entomlogy"
Fair to Midland "Arrows & Anchors"
Presto Ballet "Invisible Places"
Vangough "Kingdom of Ruin"
Clandestine "The Invalid"
Hammerfall "Infected"
Subsignal "Touchstones"
Cynthesis "DeEvolution"
Beardfish "Mammoth"
Royal Hunt "Show Me How To Live"
Serenity "Death & Legacy"
Dredg "Chuckles & Mr. Squeezy"

All of the above albums i enjoyed on more than one occasion. Some were better than others. But all are worth checking out if you are a music lover as i am. As you may find, i'm not a tough customer to please when it comes to music. Release something and i will do my best to enjoy it!
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« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2012, 10:27:55 am »

I am favorite too.(all)
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