Saturday, 30 January 2010

Top 30 albums of 2009

Finally I can post my top 30 albums for 2009. After all the other lists in various genres I can fully concentrate on my favourite styles such as power metal and anything which puts melody at the forefront.

30. Saint Deamon - Pandeamonium
Melodic power metal gem. Trust me it's not easy to gain a place in the top 30 and Saint Deamon deserve their place.

29. Coldspell - Infinite Stargaze
A new melodic metal band with great songs and vocals. Typical stuff that I like but when it's done this well who can resist?

28. Hammerfall - No Scarifice, No Victory
A really good album from the Hammers. They know the book of heavy metal from A-Z.

27. Wizard - Thor
A great effort after being in the doldrums a bit. Every time any band sings about Vikings it normally ends up being good. Almost anyway!

26. Free Spirit - Pale Sister of Light
Another new melodic rock band with a great debut. Sumptuous catchy melodic rock with melodies to enjoy over and over again.

25. Dark Moor - Autumnal
Perennial Spanish symphonic power metal stalwarts with many great albums under their belt, deliver yet another highlight. Possibly the best Spanish band in this style ever.

24. Wolf - Ravenous
A very consistent band and Ravenous continues their trad metal legacy in great style.

23. While Heaven Wept - Vast Oceans Lachrymose
Melodic doom power masterpiece. They used to be more doom but now the power metal quotient has been increased which is no bad thing. Epic!

22. Cain's Offering - Gather The Faithful
The real Sonata Arctica disk! And Timo sings much better than he does in his day job.

21. DGM - FrAme
Amazing prog power band with huge production values. The singer from the last album is gone but the new chap is acceptable indeed. Musically as ambitious as it gets.

20. Vindictiv - Ground Zero
The second Vindictiv album is even better than the first. Featuring in the main the amazing vocals of Swedish legend Goran Edman. The music is the usual melodic, neo-classical riff and solo heaven that Swedes deliver with their eyes closed.

19. Crash The System - The Crowning
Another new band which reads like the who's who of Swedish melodic rock and AOR. Once again the vocals of Thomas Vikstrom are amazing on the songs that he sings.

18. Voyager - I am the reVolution
One of the best hybrid bands in modern times, mixing elements of prog/power to perfection. The gentle melodic vocals can often be hypnotic and the patterns weaved by the music are completely enchanting.

17. Cage - Science Of Annihilation
Pure power speed metal from the American kings of heavy power metal. Planet Crusher!!!

16. Redemption - Snowfall on Judgement Day
Epic and melodic prog metal doesn't really get much better than this. Great songs and vocals with top class instrumentation and production.

15. Bloodbound - Tabula Rasa
With Urban back and a whole new sound, Bloodbound took the bull by the horns in this release. Consistently melodic, streamlined and catchy.

14. Candlemass - Death Magic Doom
The kings of doom hit their stride in this release with added power metal elements as well as the usual melodic doom. Great memorable song writing is what wins them many accolades from the metal hordes in the end.

13. Megadeth - Endgame
Well I'm a Mega fanboy so it's a no brainer. Much more intense than United Abominations but perhaps lacking some of the catchier melodies of the predecessor. Still it's Megadeth so it must fucking rule!

12. Jorn - Spirit Black
Usual story from workaholic Jorn. Kick ass heavy as lead melodic rock with Jorn's customary amazing vocals. Can't wait for Masterplan's new disk with Jorn back on the mic where he belongs.

11. Kings Of Modesty - Hell Or Highwater
Yet another new Finnish comes out of the blue with a sparkling melodic metal gem with some progressive tendencies. However it's the melodies that win me over.

10. Fairyland - A Score to a New Beginning
As good as it gets symphonic power metal. The rightful heir to Rhapsody's vacated throne as the kings of the style. We await Rhapsody's return with bated breath though!

9. On The Rise - Dream Zone
AOR killer rises from the depths once again. This is the band's second album after 6-7 years and boy what a great album it is. Perfect marriage between classic Survivor with a modern edge.

8. Praying Mantis - Sanctuary
The oldest band in the list delivers a fantastically fresh and exciting melodic rock album with a brilliant new singer. Great old band and album still rocking hard.

7. Creed - Full Circle
My favourite modern rock album of 2009 by miles. The Alter Bridge guys got back with Scott Stapp and really delivered the goods with huge soaring choruses and full bodied rock. A big surprise and personally speaking, a brilliant record from start to finish.

6. Impellitteri - Wicked Maiden
After waiting an age finally the new Impellitteri album hit the shelves early last year with Rob Rock once again back in tandem with the shredmaster himself. Yngwie who?

5. Leverage - Circus Colossus
You can't go wrong with these guys. Finnish kings of melodic metal deliver a seriously addictive set of songs once again.

4. Danger Danger - Revolve
A huge and colossal come back from Danger Danger with Ted Poley singing better than he ever has. The songs are mainly pure gold with hardly a filler in sight with a few orgasmic efforts. Melodic rock doesn't get too much better than this!

3. W.E.T. - st
Well OK, Danger Danger was good but there were two better melodic rock AOR disk this year and the debut W.E.T. was one of 'em. The trio of members deliver melodic rock anthems that will fill your head and heart with pure melodic joy. Can't wait for the follow up!

2. Place Vendome - Streets of Fire
And the second disk better than Danger Danger in the melodic rock field was of course this gem of an album. With songs like these and Michael Kiske's amazing vocals you just can't go wrong. The good thing is that even though there are many different song writers the standard remains consistently amazing. Let's hope there's a 3rd PV disk pretty soon!

1. Powerwolf - Bible of the Beast
Finally we reach my top disk of the year! Powerwolf are a slightly tongue in cheek type of band with a lupine fixation to say the least, but when your songs are this outrageously, over the top catchy, who friggin cares! The vocals from Attila Dorn are something to be hold with melodies which stick like superglue lending the songs a somewhat operatic symphonic edge. An amazing album and I thought they couldn't top their previous album. I was plain wrong. Bravo for the 'wolf!

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