Category: Tokako

Metal now officially added to Genres & Moods over at Spotify!

Spotify_Metal_Playlists

Now here’s something I actually like a lot with Spotify constantly working with improving their service. In the “Browse” category, under “Genres & Moods”, Metal has finally been added. And you know what?

Well, that “Metal of the 90’s” playlist is done by yours truly so be sure to follow it for the best metal of the 90’s. Playlist updated every week…(and still done so without any real official affiliation nor  financial compensation or whatever, but for the love of metal!)

Summary of August 2014

Summer is over and it really shows when it comes to new quality albums from most labels hitting the shelves. New releases from bands such as: ACCEPT, ALESTORM, ASTRAL DOORS, BELPHEGOR, BLOOD OF KINGU, DRAGONFORCE, ENTOMBED A.D., HAMMERFALL, THE HAUNTED, THE MOON & THE NIGHTSPIRIT, OPETH, PALLBEARER, PELICAN, SOLACE OF REQUIEM, SÓLSTAFIR, THOSE WHO BRIG THE TORTURE, UNISONIC, WOLF and more.


“Summary of August 2014″

This was My Life – 1996

If you wanna read more about the idea and thought with this article series, read the first post HERE. Just to clarify – the order of the albums is not a toplist but instead ordered from A to Z.

1996 was once again a year that offered fantastic albums, but also some major disappointments, the biggest of them  all being Metallica‘s “Load”  album. The Metallica that once was truly died here. Another band that released a really mediocre album was Sepultura with their “Roots” album. But besides these two mentioned albums 1996 was indeed brilliant with such fantastic albums as: “For Snow Covered the Northland”, “Vile”, “Ravedusk in My Heart”, “A Bloodred Path”, “The Dark Saga”, “Latex Cult”, “The Jester Race”, “Brave Murder Day”, “Louder Than Hell”, “Heaven Shall Burn… When We Are Gathered”, “Irreligious”, “Like Gods of the Sun”, “The Closing Chronicles”, “Morningrise”, “The Great Southern Trendkill”, “Down”, “Nord”, “Skogsgriftens Rike”, “Velvet Darkness They Fear” and “October Rust”But as always everything can be found in Spotify playlist that goes with the article.

Some bands formed in 1996:

  • Arch Enemy
  • Control Denied
  • Decapitated
  • Evergrey
  • Gojira
  • Nightwish
  • Sonata Arctica
  • The Haunted
  • Within Temptation

Some events during 1996:

  • Alice in Chains plays their last ever concert with Layne Staley on July 23, 1996. They later go on hiatus until April 20, 2002 in which Staley is found dead in his apartment after overdosing on a Speedball.
  • The original line-up of KISS (Ace Frehley, Gene Simmons, Peter Criss, Paul Stanley) come back together.
  • Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens fills the void left by Rob Halford in 1993 as lead singer of Judas Priest.

MY TOP 10 FOR 1996:

BATHORY – ”BLOOD ON ICE”
Black Mark Production
1996 [May 27]

After the 1995 disaster that was spelled “Octagon” it truly came as a blessing to once again hear Quorthon (R.I.P.) back in form. It’s once again epic and big!  This is my favourite of the “after 1991″-era Bathory.

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BEWITCHED – ”DIABOLICAL DESECRATION”
Osmose Productions
1996 [August 12]

Retro-thrash with a splash of black became the thing of 1996 with bands such as Nocturnal Breed, Infernö, Aura Noir and of course my favourites,  Bewitched. It’s simple and straight forward heavy metallish thrashy blackness with lyrics to match the attitude.

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DARK FUNERAL – ”THE SECRETS OF THE BLACK ARTS”
No Fashion Records
1996 [January 28]

Even though I can’t say that the re-recordings of the tracks found on the bands debut-EP are better, “The Secrets of the Black Arts” is an album that continued redefining what black metal could sound like. I’m actually more of a fan of the original recording of this album done over at Dan Swanö’s Unisound Studios.

 

EDGE OF SANITY – ”CRIMSON”
Black Mark Production
1996 [April 2]

A 40 minute long death metal song, can it really work? Well the answer is Yes! This is a brilliant EoS album from start to finish and also the last album from the band before it sort of split up in a Dan Swanö’s EoS and Not-Dan Swanö’s EoS.

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HYPOCRISY – ”ABDUCTED”
Nuclear Blast
1996 [February 13]

The break-through album of Hypocrisy as well as the album that cemented the sound that the band is still pretty much using on album after album.  And with tracks such as “Roswell 47″ and “The Arrival of the Demons (Part 2)” it’s no wonder this became a hit.

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KING DIAMOND – ”THE GRAVEYARD”
Massacre Records
1996 [October 1]

This is the album that sealed the deal when it comes to declaring KD as the true KING!  Strangely a lot of people see this as one of KD’s weakest works. Well, a lot of people are simply wrong. Also managed to caught KD on tour this year, with none other than MF as “opening act”.


MERCYFUL FATE– ”INTO THE UNKNOWN”
Metal Blade Records
1996 [August 20]

Not only did 1996 bring us a new KD album, we were also spoiled with a new Mercyful Fate album. An album that grew to be one of my absolute favourites from MF.  “You would not know of me…we never met before. The name is Damian and I used to live in this house”…….

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SACRILEGE – ”LOST IN THE BEAUTY YOU SLAY”
Black Sun Records
1996 [-]

Such an underrated album. Problem is that it was released during the most hectic period of new melodic death metal being released (in a time before todays so-called “melodic death metal” bands emerged with their clean vocals and whatnots)….This is the GBG-sound at its finest!


SAMAEL – ”PASSAGE”
Century Media
1996 [August 19]

Samael really found their sound with “Passage” (even though “Ceremony of Opposites” drew towards this sound). A great album indeed!!

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THERION– ”THELI”
Nuclear Blast
1996 [August 9]

Listening to “Theli” now compared to back when it was initially released is two quit different things. Back in 1996 this album was really groundbreaking and majestic and therefor deserves a spot in this list.

 

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Click on the button above to listen to the rest of my favorites from 1996.

This was My Life – 1995

If you wanna read more about the idea and thought with this article series, read the first post HERE. Just to clarify – the order of the albums is not a toplist but instead ordered from A to Z.

1995 was a fantastic year. Not only did some real classics get released that year but it was also the year when I started my first real band in the form of melodic death/black metal band Twilight. A band that went through quite a lot of musical changes until finally morphing into death/grind outfit Deathbound. Making this months top 10 has been agonizing to say at least  – I’ve had to cut such fantastic albums as: “Imaginations from the Other Side”, “Swansong”, “The Gallery”, “Panzerfaust”, “Once Upon the Cross”, “Massive Killing Capacity”, “HEart of the Ages”, “Slagry”, “Destroy Erase Improve”, “Wolfheart”,  “The Breathing Shadow”, “Orchid”, “Draconian Times”, “Amok”, “Pierced from Within”, “Minas Morgul”, “The Damnation Game”, “Bergtatt”, “Written in Waters” and “Blood Must Be Shed”. But as always everything can be found in Spotify playlist that goes with the article.

Some bands formed in 1995:

  • Aborted
  • Agalloch
  • Borknagar
  • Ensiferum
  • Evergrey
  • Shadows Fall
  • Slipknot
  • Solefald
  • Moonsorrow
  • System of a Down
  • Thyrfing
  • Twilight (later became Deathbound)

Some events during 1995:

  • “Würzel” leaves Motörhead.
  • S.O.B.’s vocalist Tottsuan committed suicide by jumping onto railroad tracks.
  • Ingo Schwichtenberg of Helloween Died.

MY TOP 10 FOR 1995:

AT THE GATES – ”SLAUGHTER OF THE SOUL”
Earache Records
1995 [November 14]

A disappointment at first, but truly an album that grew into a classic. My third* favourite album from ATG after the magnificent debut fullenght “The Red in the Sky is Ours” and “Terminal Spirit Disease”.  (*Would’ve been fourth if “With Fear I Kiss the Burning Darkess” had a better production.)


DEATH – ”SYMBOLIC”
Roadrunner Records
1995 [March 21]

Fantastic album withnot a single bad song. Death was truly at its peak around this time.  Just listen to a song like “Crystal Mountain”, it has it all!

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DISSECTION – ”STORM OF THE LIGHT’S BANE”
Nuclear Blast Records
1995 [November 17]

There is a reason to why I have 5 different versions of this album (1 MC, 3 CD, 1 LP). This is as near melodic death/black metal perfection as it can get. And even though “The Somberlain” is my absolute favourite from Dissection, this album will always have a special place in my heart.

 

IMMORTAL – ”BATTLES IN THE NORTH”
Osmose Productions
1995 [May 15]

I still remember the day as it was yesterday when I put on a compilation CD that came with an issue of Swedish magazine;  Close-Up Magazine. The bass-intro for “Cursed Realms of the Winterdemons” has been etched in my brain ever since. Blashyrkh – Mighty Ravendark!!!!

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KING DIAMOND – ”THE SPIDER’S LULLABYE”
Metal Blade Records
1995 [June 6]

This is the very first KD album that I bought after hearing at a party. Let’s just say that it has been a love affair ever since that faithful day. “My name is Harry and I am from the country side. I‘m looking for a doctor, Eastmann is the name”.

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MORBID ANGEL – ”DOMINATION”
Earache Records
1995 [May 9]

It is truly amazing that someone managed to  make the album coverart even more hideous with the 2011 re-issue. I applaud thee!! Luckily the music compensate for the monstrosity called art. David Vincent’s last good deed in MA. “Dawn of the Angry” is death metal victory!!


MY DYING BRIDE– ”THE ANGEL AND THE DARK RIVER”
Peaceville Records
1995 [May 22]

To me this is the most beautiful album ever made. As well musically as lyric-wise. A track title such as “A Sea to Suffer In” is quite suggestive since I always seem to drown in the music when listening to this masterpiece!!

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MÖRK GRYNING – ”TUSEN ÅR HAR GÅTT…”
No Fashion Records
1995 [-]

There was a lot of controversy around the band at the time this was released.  This was considered as UNTRVE-black metal for some reason I’ve forgotten about. I tried to stay away for a while, but just had to surrender eventually. That bee-swarm guitarsound, just Wow!…still…


NAGLFAR – ”VITTRA”
Wrong Again Records
1995 [May 27]

There is a reason to why I am the owner of the world’s largest Naglfar-collection“Vittra” is one of the big reasons as to why. Albums like this is one of the biggest reason for why I miss the 90’s as much as I do.

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UNANIMATED– ”ANCIENT GOD OF EVIL”
No Fashion Records
1995 [March 1]

Unanimated already nailed it with “In the Forest of the Dreaming Dead” back in 1993, but still they did manage to step it up a notch with “AGOI”. Just listen to the melodies on a track like “Ruins”. It’s magical.

 

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Click on the button above to listen to the rest of my favorites from 1995.