Monday, 31 December 2012

Top 100 Songs of 2012

Right, so, a short disclaimer about how this is in no way intended to be a definitive list and that the author does not seek to punish any artists by omission, yadda, yadda.  Basically, these were, of all the hundreds (well, over two thousand actually) new songs I listened to from 2012, the most 'sticky'.  This was the soundtrack, more or less, of my year.  It would have been nice to leave a short write up for each song here, but I can only do so much in the time I have.  Also, feel free to respond.  Agree? Disagree?  What did I forget or leave out? Just want to make a smart ass joke?  Comments are welcome here as everywhere on Paranoid Hitsophrenic.
  1. Red Tide Rising (Orange Goblin / A Eulogy For the Damned)*
  2. God's Scythe (Snake Thursday / Cruise Mode)*
  3. Sacred Moon Cult (Set / Sacred Moon Cult)
  4. Kill The Colossus (Aleph Null / Dale EP)*
  5. The Butcher (Steak / Disastronaught)
  6. Breaking The Lore (Witchsorrow / God Curse Us)*
  7. Sludge Machine (Dala Sun / Gegenschein)*
  8. Calling All Demons (Moonless / Calling All Demons)*
  9. Seaquake (Yama / Seaquake EP)*
  10. Evil [From Beyond] (From Beyond / One Year EP)
  11. Soul Scour (Balam / ST)*
  12. Outrun (DSW / Dust Storm Warning)
  13. Warhead (Heat / Old Sparky)*
  14. Dancing Madly Backwards (Captain Crimson / Dancing Madly Backwards)
  15. Serums of Liao (High on Fire / De Vermis Mysteriis)
  16. Medicinecoma (Moon Curse / ST)*
  17. It's Not Because of You (Witchcraft / Legend)
  18. Blessed Night (Saint Vitus / Lillie F-65)*
  19. Gegenschein (Dala Sun / Gegenschein)
  20. Killer Kane (Admiral Sir Cloudesley Shovell / Don't Hear It ... Fear It!)*
  21. Northern High (Moon Curse / ST)*
  22. Greet Death (Destroyer of Light / ST)
  23. Possessed (Dopelord / Magick Rites)
  24. Earthrise (Vinum Sabbatum / Bacchanale Premiere)
  25. The Misfortune Teller (Down / Down IV Part I: The Purple EP)
  26. Black Candles (Windhand / ST)*
  27. A Different Moon (The Graviators / Evil Deeds)
  28. Lonely Devils Club (Captain Crimson / Dancing Madly Backwards)*
  29. Lord of Space and Time (Skanska Mord / Paths To Charon)*
  30. Haywire (Gandhi's Gunn / The Longer The Beard The Harder The Sound)*
  31. Huckleberry (Ichabod / Dreamscapes From Dead Space)*
  32. Roadtrip (Satellite Beaver / The Last Bow)
  33. Hell (Pet The Preacher / The Banjo)*
  34. Decion (Natur / Head of Death)*
  35. The Interloper (Summoner / Phoenix)
  36. The Goat of Mendhis (Sonic Mass / Magnetic Electric EP)
  37. Where Darkness Is Light (Altar of Oblivion / Grand Gesture of Defiance)*
  38. Bitchcraft (Snake Thursday / Cruise Mode)
  39. Mortified (Mexicoma / Supervoid EP)
  40. Her Little "Accident" (-(16)- / Deep Cuts From Dark Clouds)
  41. Searching (Three Seasons / Understand the World)
  42. By The Wayside (Summer Love / ST)*
  43. Southern Belle (The Midnight Ghost Train / Buffalo)
  44. Psychic Vampire (Corrosion of Conformity / ST)
  45. Let Them Fall (Saint Vitus / Lillie F-65)
  46. Red Admiral, Black Sunrise (Admiral Sir Cloudesley Shovell / Don't Hear It ... Fear It!)
  47. Hypathia (The Bad Light / Marrow of Sound)
  48. Alien Encounter (Skanska Mord / Paths To Charon)
  49. Morning Star (The Graviators / Evil Deeds)
  50. Black Elk (Moon Curse / ST)
  51. Blackbird (Dwellers / Good Morning Harakiri)*
  52. The Sandcrawler (Soundcrawler / The Sandcrawler)
  53. Murder (Spine Chilling Breeze / Milky Way)*
  54. Brontis (Moon Curse / ST)*
  55. Deny The Cross (Hour of 13 / 333)
  56. Lose Yourself (Mangoo / Neverland)*
  57. Hawk As Weapon (Conan / Monnos)
  58. Cosmic Ark (Mos Generator / Nomads)*
  59. Woman King (Lord Fowl / Moon Queen)*
  60. Levantado (Heavy Eyes / Maera)
  61. Medicine Mirror (Owl / First Album)*
  62. Lost Highway (Wo Fat / The Black Code)
  63. Evil King (Dark Earth / 42012)
  64. One Year (From Beyond / One Year EP)*
  65. The Graveyard of Broken Dreams (Altar of Oblivion / Grand Gesture of Defiance)*
  66. Crazy (Sticky Digit / ST)*
  67. All Our Thoughts (Kadavar / ST)*
  68. Something From Nothing (Spine Chilling Breeze / Milky Way)*
  69. Legalise Drugs & Murder (Electric Wizard / 7" single)
  70. Sweetish (Bison, Bison / ST)
  71. Case of Fiedelity (Greenleaf / Nest of Vipers)
  72. Dreamliner (Ice Dragon / Dream Dragon)
  73. Head on Fire (Mount Fuji / ST)
  74. Decibel Grand (Molior Superum / Into the Sun)
  75. Malice (Dead Southern Bishop / Hymns of Malice & Discontent)
  76. Nothing Is Real (Baby Woodrose / Third Eye Surgery)
  77. The Haunter of the Dark (Albino Python / single)
  78. My Mind is Going Away (Soundcrawler / The Sandcrawler)
  79. God Curse Us (Witchsorrow / God Curse Us)
  80. Moon Queen (Lord Fowl / Moon Queen)
  81. Desolizator (Behold! The Monolith / Defender, Redeemist)
  82. Rites (Buffalo Theory MTL / Heavy Ride)
  83. I Spit On Your Grave (Wight / Through the Woods Into Deep Water)
  84. Children of Crake (Law of the Tongue / ST)
  85. The Dead Still Ride (From Beyond / The Color Out of Space EP)
  86. Dying Earth (The Sword / Apocryphon)
  87. Old Wounds, New Scars (Overkill / The Electric Age)
  88. Time of Trials (Corrosion of Conformity / ST)
  89. Aphelion (Black Pyramid / split 7" single w/Odyssey)
  90. The Streets of Evermore (Lord Fowl / Moon Queen)
  91. The Moles of a Dying Race Part I (Blue Aside / The Moles of a Dying Race)
  92. Spiritual Rights (High on Fire / De Vermis Mysteriis)
  93. Ungod (Blood Red Water / Tales of Addiction & Despair)
  94. Simple Depression Guide (Mount Fuji / ST)
  95. Sons of Chaos (Black Pyramid / II)
  96. Horsepuncher (Lord of the Grave / Green Vapour)
  97. Space (Glitter Wizard / Hunting Gatherers)
  98. W.E.R.O.C.K. (Sonic Titan / Even Higher)
  99. Devils Curse (Red Desert / Damned By Fate)
  100. Tombstone Rider (Vinum Sabbatum / Bacchanale Premiere)
*No. 1 in Doom Charts

2012 Chronicle (Year in review) part 13 - Addendum, oversight, late additions, etc.

What can I say, it was a big project and I lost track of some things.  Also, I discovered a number of albums in the last couple weeks that I felt were definitely worthy of inclusion.  Each of these entries will be added to the relevant monthly year in review posts for future generations to see ...

March 21 - WINDHAND (ST) - Richmond, Virginia based doom quintet Windhand's five song debut was one of the best releases of the year.  It has made many year end lists and has netted them a deal with Burning World records.  Their Electric Wizard meets Uncle Acid style of doom is supremely addictive.  Find it here and be blown away by one of the best albums of the year.  Highlights include "Black Candles" and "Winter Sun".  Rating 5/5

March 27 - Pale Divine (Painted Windows Black)

June 14 - NIGHTOSAUR (Spaceaxers) - Minneapolis based power trio Nightosaur play a raw brand of 'fossil rock' with elements of punk, thrash and sludge.  Their sophomore effort is a high energy, eptempo outing and loud above all else.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Too Far South For Mutiny" and "There May Be Dragons".  Rating 4/5

September 12 - THE BRIMSTONE DAYS (On A Monday Too Early To Tell) - Malmo, Sweden based three-piece The Brimstone Days are a high energy, no-nonsense, back-to-basics rock & roll band.  On their second album they bang off 14 killer songs in 48 satisfying minutes with hardly a detour into ballad country.  These guys get straight to the point and stay on track.  Find it here.  Highlights include "Same Old Story" and "I Need Soul".  Rating 4.5/5

September 23 - BLUE ASIDE (The Moles of a Dying Race) - Boston proggers Blue Aside released maybe my favorite prog album of 2012.  It's an album that I like more and more with each subsequent listen.  Cold landscapes and an ever-present feeling of paranoia pervade this album.  Read my review.  Get it here.  Highlights include "The Ice Mammoth" and "The Moles of a Dying Race, Part I".  Rating 4.5/5

October 5 - CHAINS (Of Death) - Clearly, you will notice, ambient drone doom is not a major area of focus around Paranoid Hitsophrenic but with Chad Davis involved I was more than happy to make an exception.  This is magic ritual music, more meditative and darker than Saturnalia Temple or Spectral Haze and more of a mood setter.  Find it here. Highlights include "Anticosmic Void" and "Necromantic Force".  Rating 4.5/5

October 31 - MAGE (Black Sands) - Leicester, England quintet Mage play a burly style of mossy stoner doom.  This is their first full length album, full of big riffs and some very memorable songs.  Aside from those listed below "Danse Macabre", "Degenerate" and "Witch of the Black Desert" are standout tracks.  Good mix of stoner and doom by way of the desert.  Read my review.  Find it here.  Highlights include "Cosmic Cruiser X" and "Drowning Doom".  Rating 4/5

November 9 - ARKHAM WITCH (Legions of the Deep) - Old School metal quartet  with elements of doom from Keighley, England, featuring two thirds of Lamp of Thoth.  So much of this album is standout material, there's hooks and riffs galore and this album is littered with reference to the work of Robert E. Howard and H.P. Lovecraft, etc.  Come upon it here.  Highlights include "The Cloven Sea" and "David Lund".  Rating 4/5

November 12 - Hound (Spirits Are Appearing)

November 14 - THREE SEASONS (Understand The World) - A standout entry in the field of prog from Uppsala, Sweden, this would have been a standout in the original prog era of the early 70s, of which this album really sounds like.  There's some top flight material on this album and this band is at the forefront of this Golden Age of Swedish Rock.  Read my review.  Find it here.  Highlights include "Searching" and "Set In Stone".  Rating 4/5

November 14 - WHEELFALL (Interzone) - Epic stoner rock with great riffs and a hypnotic attitude, this French foursome's much lauded debut full length is a downtuned wet fuzz dream come true.  It's not often you hear a stoner rock band attempt a 20+ minute song, but Wheelfall does it.  Lot of great French releases in 2012, 'Interzone' is near the top.  Get it here.  Highlights include "It Comes From The Mist" and "Holy Sky".  Rating 4.5/5

November 22 - BLACK SPACE RIDERS (Light is the New Black) - This is a very interesting release from a German space / stoner rock quartet.  A lot of the song titles have bracketed subtitles which creates the impression that the band has so many ideas they don't know what to do with them all, this abundance of ideas comes across in the music.  Check it out.  Highlights include "Digging Down" and "Startrooper".  Rating 4/5


There you have it.  2012 was an amazing year for music and I didn't even get the chance to pick up or listen to half of everything I wanted to.  I'd like to think that I supported only the best of the absolute best, but there were just too many albums that I didn't get around to.  And with upcoming releases from none other than Black Sabbath, Alice in Chains, Cathedral and Clutch as well as Serpent Venom, Windhand, Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats and High Priest of Saturn, among so many other highly anticipated releases (Egypt, Moss, Set (Mass.), Sonic Titan, Witchcoven, I could go on and on) that my bank account groans miserably in anticipation, 2013 threatens to be an even better year.  See you on the other side of the fence ...

Sunday, 30 December 2012

In Case You Missed It 12/30/12 (News)

As was expected, it wasn't a major week for news and music releases, what with the holidays and all, folks around the world were busy with friends, family, loved ones, horned deities, etc.  But there was still enough news and music to keep me occupied, out of trouble and off the streets ...

ITEM! Chiliomodi, Greece super stoners 1000MODS are back with a new 10" EP called 'Valley of Sand'.  Side A features the sprawling 17 minute title track while side B houses a trio of live cuts: "7 Flies", "Navy in Alice" and "Track Me" from their amazing 'Super Van Vacation' album.  There are 500 copies available from The Lab records.  You can order your copy or download the 4 song EP here on the 1000mods bandcamp page.

ITEM! If you haven't heard it by now, there is a fan madde video up of the new ALICE IN CHAINS song (so happy with the sequence of those last six words).  The song is called "Hollow" and if this author be so bold as to opine, it may be the heaviest and darkest we've heard the band since 'Dirt'.  The full song was streamed on the band's website on the 18, but the song won't be officially released until January 8.  They're already playing it on the radio so it should be overplayed and pretty much lifeless before that day comes, but for now.  Listen to the video below:

ITEM! Newport, Rhode Island's very own doom machine, BALAM is rolling once again.  The band has been writing a lot of new material lately and as a special Christmas gift, they've allowed us outsiders a glimpse into what they're up to.  It's an unmastered song without vocals that will be a part of a new project to be released sometime in 2013.  You can hear the untitled new song here on bandcamp.

ITEM! Italian doom stalwart Steve Sylvester and DEATH SS released a new single on the 21st called "The Darkest Night".  It's the title track from their forth-coming 8th studio album due out in March 2013.  The CD single was limited to 666 copies and sold out within 48 hours so there's still quite some appetite for the Godfathers of Italian doom.  You can download the song on itunes, check out the band's official website or laze about right here and watch the video below:

ITEM! You may recall a couple weeks ago, the Chad Davis (Hour of 13, Chains, Witchcoven, etc.) involved band THE SABBATHIAN were looking for a new vocalist to replace Jess of Jess & The Ancient Ones.  Well, they've found her.  From the band:
"The Sabbathian is proud to welcome the talents of Norwegian vocalist Anette Uvass Gulbrandsen. The voice she possesses is a masterful mix of pitch-perfect strength and etherial chiors, something that adds an amazing element to The Sabbathian. We will be posting a rough mix track from the forthcoming release on Svart Records very soon."
Congratulations Anette!

2012 Chronicle (Year in review) part 12 - Best of December

December 2 - FROM BEYOND (The Color Out of Space EP) - Houston, Texas space / doom trio From Beyond's second EP of their rookie year isn't a complete departure from their first, but it does reveal them as a restless and ambitious band, never content to sit on a sound and ever ready to explore new ground.  Four great songs, each different in texture and style.  'The Color Out of Space' is an advancement from 'One Year' and it leaves me incredibly excited about the future of this band.  I was particularly fond of my recent review of this EP, and so were the band.  You can read it here.  Get it here.  Highlights include "The Dead Still Ride" and "The Color Out of Space".  Rating 5/5

December 2 - Mother Gun (Human EP)

December 6 - MOTHERSLOTH (Hazy Blur of Life) - Madrid, Spain based quartet Mothersloth play a very metallic style of sludge and doom.  Their four song EP is full of chunking and squealing heavy metal guitar, big throaty vocals and the heavy-hitting stylings of their drummer, the wonderfully-named, Gog. Get it here.  Highlights include "Pile of Fortune" and "Goliath".  Rating 3.5/5

December 7 - YEAR OF THE GOAT (Angels' Necropolis) - "Here we go again.  Yet another Swedish retro rock band."  Wrong.  Year of the Goat is a retro band with a difference.  They pay their fair share of homage to times past without slavishly attempting to recreate specific eras.  Rather, they are collageists who take a bit from here, take a bit from there and add their own flame to the fire.  The end result is eight terrific songs, a sweeping album full of excellent performances.  Find it here.  Highlights include "Spirit of Fire" and "I'll Die For You".  Rating 4/5 (full review coming soon)

December 12 - Enos (All Too Human)

December 13 - GEEZER (Handmade Heavy Blues) - Geezer don't lie.  Just look at the album title and that should give you your best clue as to what you might find on this fine 10 song collection.  Fans of Five Horse Johnson or Heavy Eyes will find a lot to love from this New York power trio, but fans of Robert Johnson, Son House, Willie Brown, etc. might love it even more.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Pony" and "I'm Coming Home".  Rating 4/5

December 13 - HELLRYDE INC. (Hellryde Incorporated) - I'm hearing this more and more and I like it.  Monterrey, Mexico's four piece Hellryde Inc play metal with groove and stoner elements.  The guitars squeal, the drums thrash, the bass is distorted to near inaudibility, but the songs and the riffs are built on a stoner foundation.  Check it out, this is high class stuff.  Highlights include "Piss Me Off" and "Insomnia".  Rating 4/5

December 13 - Stonebringer (Ocean of the Brave)

December 14 - THE HEAVY EYES (Maera) - After releasing one of the best albums of 2011, what do Memphis blues heavyweights The Heavy Eyes do for an encore?  They've thickened up their sound, the riffs are bigger, the grooves are filthier, the songs are tighter, the hooks are more memorable.  Simply put, The Heavy Eyes have unleashed a monster of an album, one of the year's best.  "These Men Are Wolves", "Parado", "Lately" and No. 1 hit "Levantado" are just a sampling of the abundance of standout material.  Read my review.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Lately" and "Levantado".  , Rating 5/5

December 18 - SLOW HEART (Dead Friends and Angry Lovers) - The latest incarnation of Ice Dragon and its multiple personae, Slow Heart is a goth / drone rock exorcism.  This project seems to be an expansion of certain moods and sounds found on Ice Dragon's 'Greyblackfalconhawk' album.  Get it here.  Highlights include "We Want The Night" and "Never Trust a Woman (Dressed in Black)".  Rating 4/5

December 19 - OWL (Christmas Mixtape 2012) - Owl's Christmas mixtape is a collection of free ballin' jams and outtakes, but it's no simple throwaway shit collage.  It's a 44-minute noise fest featuring some really good moments.  I don't think this stuff was recorded with the intention of release so some of it can sound rather poorly, but I listen to a lot of scratchy delta blues records from the 30s and psychedelic underground acetates of the 60s so unmastered de-studiofied recording are alright by me.  And who doesn't love tapes?  I was a diehard tape guy before I was a diehard CD guy.  It wasn't until about '98 when labels stopped making tapes that I finally switched over to CDs ...  Get your gift here.  Highlights include "Chromatose" and "The Demon is Born".  Rating There's something very inherently wrong with 'rating' a Christmas mixtape.

December 21 - 1000mods (Valley of Sand EP)

December 21 - WHEELFALL / A VERY OLD GHOST BEHIND THE FARM split - Heavy, heavy stuff from France.  Wheelfall's still warm on the table album 'Interzone' album has been a critical hit.  This is the first new music AVOGBTF has released in two full years, whose album 'Primary Septagon' is a real favorite at PH.  The wait was worth it.  Crushing doom.  Get crushed here.  Highlights include "Hangman's Laugh" and "Navigating on the Seas of Dementia".  Rating 4.5/5

December 22 - PALACE IN THUNDERLAND (Stars, Dreams, Seas) - This three song demo from New England supergroup Palace in Thunderland is the first release from the group since splitting up in 2007.  Back then they weren't a supergroup, they were just a group.  'Stars, Dreams, Seas' shows some different sides but mostly fits into the stoner / space rock genres.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Beyond The Stars" and "Awakened Dream".  Rating 4.5/5

December 25 - Balam - New Song [No Vocals] Preproduction 2013

December 26 - Deaf Flow (Songs From The Dark Side of Uranus)

Best Album From December 2012:

Best Song From December 2012:
"The Dead Still Ride" by FROM BEYOND

Palace In Thunderland - Stars, Dreams, Seas (album review)

Palace in Thunderland started out life as Skyball, the main band of four young musicians.  Skyball was a garage rock band that morphed into Palace in Thunderland in 1998.  The band recorded a couple of EPs and an album that was never released and in 2007 the guys in the band decided to call it quits.

Each of the four musicians went on to form other, more successful, bands.  They are Monte Newman (Hydro-Electric, guitar); Andy Beresky (Black Pyramid, guitar); Adam Abrams and Matt Netto (Blue Aside, bass and drums respectively, (Abrams is also in Space Mushroom Fuzz)).  Now, they have returned from travels that must have included stops in spaceports unknown and re-formed a high school garage band as a stoner rock supergroup.  Four youngsters who split, return as conquering heroes.  There's seemingly no shortage of musical talent in the New England area and so, it was destined to be.

The three songs on this demo EP are the first new sounds from this collective band of musicians together in over five years.

"Beyond the Stars" shakes off the rust with a Sabbath-like riff and crash combo that launches the goodship Thunderland out of orbit.  The slabs of Sabbath-ized riffage and chunks of crunching rhythms perfectly frame the super catchy chorus, "Come ... with ... us ... Beyond the Stars!".  "Awakened Dream" carries on the Sabbath feel and doesn't have as memorable a chorus, but makes up for it with more of a melodic flavor..  "The Distant Shore" is a different beast altogether and if I had to guess I would hazard that this is more of a Monte Newman song, which then breaks down towards the end into an Andy Beresky flavored melancholic riff to close out the short, 16 minute demo EP.

It's interesting to be able to hear each individual's unique contribution to the band, it truly is an amalgamation of sounds.  You can hear a Beresky lead, you can hear the power of Monte Newman, you can hear Blue Aside's unique rhythm section at work on the groove.  The vocals are in the Ozzy sound-alike vein which really comes across in "Awakened Dream".  The Sabbath feel is very present overall in the first two tracks, not just in the vocals and guitars but also in the Bill Wardian drumming of Matt Netto.  It seems as though Beresky provides the bulk of the vocals on this disc, though not in the way that most listeners familiar with his work in Black Pyramid would recognize, as they are sung melodically rather than shouted, though it can be hard to tell who is singing as all four are credited with vocals, and it could just as easily be Abrams or Newman singing for all I know.

Though this teaser of what's to come consists of a mere three songs and 16 minutes, it's a satisfying listening experience in and of itself, and it carries within it the seeds of a very substantial release when a full length album eventually emerges.

Highlights include: "Beyond the Stars" and "Awakened Dream"

Rating: 4.5/5

Total Run Time: 16:48

From: Springfield, Massachusetts

Genre: Space Rock, Stoner, Psychedelic

Reminds me of: Black Pyramid, Black Sabbath, Blue Aside, Hydro-Electric, Lord Vicar, Space Mushroom Fuzz

Release Date: December 22, 2012

Suggested listening activity for fellow non-stoners: Solidify these sounds into a cosmic surfboard to hold court with shimmering luminescent being of pure dream-state given substance.

Better Review
Hellride Music Forum

Hour of Power 12/29/12 (playlist)

Highlights from the week of 12/23/12 - 12/29/12

  1. Defecting Grey (The Pretty Things - 7" single) 1967
  2. Mr. Evasion (The Pretty Things - 7" single) 1967
  3. U-Turn (The Quartet of Woah! - Ultrabomb) 2012
  4. Grind It (Lord 13 - 2013) 2011
  5. All Too Human (Enos - All Too Human) 2012
  6. These Men Are Wolves (The Heavy Eyes - Maera) 2012
  7. I Need Soul (The Brimstone Days - On A Monday Too Early To Tell) 2012
  8. The Goat of Mendhis (Sonic Mass - Magnetic Electric) 2012
  9. Awakened Dream (Palace in Thunderland - Stars, Dreams, Seas) 2012
  10. Night of the Dancing Witch [instrumental version] (Talis - GLOT) 2012
  11. The Darkest Night (Death SS - The Darkest Night) 2013
  12. Talkin About The Good Times (The Pretty Things - 7" single) 1968
  13. Walking Through My Dreams (The Pretty Things - 7" single) 1968

Saturday, 29 December 2012

Doom Charts for 12/29/12

Top 25 Songs
#). Song Title (artist/album)
  1. Haywire (Gandhi's Gunn / The Longer the Beard the Harder the Sound)
  2. Blackbird (Dwellers / Good Morning Harakiri)
  3. Searching (Three Seasons / Understand The World)
  4. Tribe of the Cosmic Crow Giant (Spectral Haze / ST Demo)
  5. At Midnight [I'll Steal Your Soul] (From Beyond / The Color Out of Space EP)
  6. House of Death (Witchcoven)
  7. Everything Divine (Seamount / Earthmother)
  8. Cosmic Cruiser X (Mage / Black Sands)
  9. Rivertown (Bison, Bison / ST)
  10. Season of Decay (Ice Dragon / Season of Decay single)
  11. Can't Get Where I Belong (Mos Generator / Nomads)
  12. Jack Staff (Greenleaf / Nest of Vipers)
  13. Vodun pt.II - I, Zombie (Abrahma / Through the Dusty Paths of Our Lives)*
  14. Cosmonauts (Axxicorn / 7" single)
  15. I Am Thunder (Mammoth Thunderpower / I Am Thunder EP)
  16. The Job (Five Horse Johnson / The Taking of Blackheart)
  17. Milk (White Bone Rattle / Creature of Curiosity)*
  18. Old Sparky (Heat / Old Sparky)*
  19. The Hidden Masters (The Sword / Apocryphon)*
  20. The Megalodon (Corrosion of Conformity / Megalodon EP)*
  21. Two Gods / Caput Algol (Electric Taurus / 7" single)
  22. Amaranth [demo] (Windhand / Hymns from the House of Horror comp.)
  23. Lichtritter (Talis / G.L.O.T.)*
  24. Understanding Ouroboros (Ice Dragon / A Gallery of Rogues comp.)
  25. Caminando En La Luna (Demonauta / Caminando En La Luna EP)*
* New Song

Outgoing songs:
"Modern World" by The Bad Light
"Anxiety Puke / Lovelessness" by Bison B.C.
"The Same Way" by Corrosion of Conformity
"Circle Eater" by Harvester
"Centauri Teenage Riot" by Indian Handcrafts
"elf" by Mount Fuji
"Rock'n'Rollin Maailma" by Seremonia

    Top 20 Albums
    #). artist - album title
    1. From Beyond - The Color Out of Space EP
    2. Greenleaf - Nest of Vipers
    3. Mamont - Passing Through the Mastery Door
    4. Abrahma - Through the Dusty Path of Our Lives
    5. Blue Aside - The Moles of a Dying Race
    6. Seamount - Earthmother
    7. Necronomicon - The Queen of Death
    8. The Heavy Eyes - Maera
    9. At Devil Dirt - Chapter II "vulgo gratissimus auctor"
    10. Dryasdust - ST Demo
    11. Lord of the Grave - Green Vapour
    12. Seremonia - ST
    13. Molior Superum - Into the Sun
    14. Three Seasons - Understand The World
    15. Arkham Witch - Legions of the Deep
    16. Kadavar - ST
    17. Wheelfall / A Very Old Ghost Behind The Farm - split album
    18. Year of the Goat - Angels' Necropolis
    19. Mage - Black Sands
    20. Manlord - ST
    21. Spectral Haze - ST Demo
    22. The Quartet of Woah! - Ultrabomb
    23. The Shooters - Planet of the Black Sun
    24. Voltron - Kaventsmann
    25. Corrosion of ConformityMegalodon EP

    2012 Chronicle (Year in review) part 11 - Best of November

    November 1 - Black Overdrive (ST)

    November 1 - Motherslug (ST)

    November 1 - TORF (Doomed Youth EP)

    November 3 - MOLIOR SUPERUM (Into the Sun) - Sweden is the home to a disproportionate number of excellent bands and this quartet of heavy psych rockers are among the top of that list  'Into the Sun' is a very accomplished and high energy debut.  Read my review.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Decibel Grand" and "Towards the Haze".  Rating 4/5

    November 4 - HARVESTER (The Blind Summit Recordings) - This Irish quartet follow very much in the footsteps of their forefathers and fellow countrymen Thin Lizzy.  This 6 song EP offers no dull moments and a headspinning array of twin guitar pyrotechnics.  Available for FREE download on bandcamp.  Highlights include "Circle Eater" and "Cosmonautical Mile".  Rating 4/5

    November 5 - Galvano (Two Titans)

    November 6 - Graveyard (Lights Out)

    November 6 - Hornss (The Red Death single)

    November 9 - ARKHAM WITCH (Legions of the Deep) - Old School metal quartet  with elements of doom from Keighley, England, featuring two thirds of Lamp of Thoth.  So much of this album is standout material, there's hooks and riffs galore and this album is littered with reference to the work of Robert E. Howard and H.P. Lovecraft, etc.  Come upon it here.  Highlights include "The Cloven Sea" and "David Lund".  Rating 4/5

    November 9 - SEAMOUNT (IV: Earthmother) - German 'dark rock' trio with the great Phil Swanson on vocals, Seamount's fourth album is an emotional journey with an open wound honesty in both lyrics and musical accompaniment, and this album spans the spectrum of emotions. Read my review.  Find it here.  Highlights include "Everything Divine" and "Aphrodite's Child".  Rating 4/5

    November 10 - LORD OF THE GRAVE (Green Vapour) - I'll never forget the one line from Doomentor at the Sludgelord blog: "If Lord of The Grave’s sound had a physical presence it would have the texture of a dug up decomposing dead warrior Orc".  That pretty much sums it up better than I could, but here's my review anyway.  Get 'Green Vapour'. Highlights include "Horsepuncher" and "Raping Zombies".  Rating 4/5

    November 12 - Cultura Tres (El Mal Del Bien)

    November 12 - Golden Void (ST)

    November 12 - Hound (Spirits Are Appearing)

    November 13 - CORROSION OF CONFORMITY (Megalodon EP) - The core trio of CoC made it two terrific releases in a single year with this FREE download and CD (only available at the live show at the moment, vinyl coming soon).  Five songs building off of the new foundations the band laid with their self-titled album in February and expanding on them to get back to a bigger southern rock sound.  The punkier side of the band still comes out but takes more of a backseat on this EP to the monster riffs.  See my review (Corrosion of Conformity did!). Highlights include "Feed On" and "Megalodon".  Rating 4.5/5

    November 13 - Soundgarden (King Animal)

    November 13 - WO FAT (The Black Code) - Wo Fat's third album was one of the year's best stoner blues albums and one of the best from Small Stone records.  Five songs, three of them reaching past the ten minute mark, for 46 minutes of pure Texas funk.  'The Black Code' is a hit on numerous levels: it's catchy and it's smart without being overly cerebral.  The heavy slabs of blues funk appeal on a visceral level, indeed the song structures themselves, born of extended jam then pared down on each subsequent read through, are crafted from 'feel' rather than strict intellectual exercise.  Read my original review.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Lost Highway" and "Hurt At Gone".  Rating 5/5

    November 14 - STICKY DIGIT (ST) - Irish stoner / grunge rockers Sticky Digit's debut full length is a terrific blend of Seattle and Desert rock.  There's much more to it than that, but their blending of various 90s era influences creates a wholly modern and unique sound.  Their use of minor chord harmonies is especially effective.  Read my review.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Crazy" and "Bad Things".  Rating 4/5

    November 14 - THREE SEASONS (Understand The World) - A standout entry in the field of prog from Uppsala, Sweden, this would have been a standout in the original prog era of the early 70s, of which this album really sounds like.  There's some top flight material on this album and this band is at the forefront of this Golden Age of Swedish Rock.  Read my review.  Find it here.  Highlights include "Searching" and "Set In Stone".  Rating 4/5

    November 14 - WHEELFALL (Interzone) - Epic stoner rock with great riffs and a hypnotic attitude, this French foursome's much lauded debut full length is a downtuned wet fuzz dream come true.  It's not often you hear a stoner rock band attempt a 20+ minute song, but Wheelfall does it.  Lot of great French releases in 2012, 'Interzone' is near the top.  Get it here.  Highlights include "It Comes From The Mist" and "Holy Sky".  Rating 4.5/5

    November 16 - Glitter Wizard (Hunting Gatherers)

    November 22 - BLACK SPACE RIDERS (Light is the New Black) - This is a very interesting release from a German space / stoner rock quartet.  A lot of the song titles have bracketed subtitles which creates the impression that the band has so many ideas they don't know what to do with them all, this abundance of ideas comes across in the music.  Check it out.  Highlights include "Digging Down" and "Startrooper".  Rating 4/5

    November 22 - The Future Has Beens (Black Death)

    November 25 - THE QUARTET OF WOAH! (Ultrabomb) - This Portuguese band's debut album is a very impressive, indeed staggering clash of styles and influences that create one of the most unique listening experiences of the year.  With styles ranging from the likes of Yes to solo John Lennon to Truckfighters this album is a real headswirler and worth anybody's time to check it out.  Highlights include "The Ultrabomb" and "Taste of Hate".  Rating 4/5

    November 28 - THE SHOOTERS (Planet of the Black Sun) - If you like good, uptempo hard rock you should do yourself a favor and check out this excellent album, after all, you can pay whatever you want, even $0, it's up to you.  Every song is great, there's no filler and no fooling around, it's just great straight up fuzzy hard rock. Highlights include "Desert Sun" and "Against the Storm".  Rating 4.5/5

    November 28 - White Bone Rattle (Creature of Curiosity)

    November 29 - Albino Python (The Doomed and the Damned)

    November 30 - Midnight Zombie Alligator (Nova Sico)

    November 30 - THE WANDERING MIDGET (From the Meadows of Opium Dreams) - One day down the dusty path of my life I will consider most of the albums that I've been spotlighting here in my year in review posts to be classics.  But of all the amazing records that dropped in 2012 the one above all others that just screamed Instant Classic from the very beginning was this album right here.  It's not my most played and it's not my personal favorite of the year but I know quality songwriting when I hear it.  This is doom at its most epic and is an album that will know heavy rotation for years to come.  Maybe I won't listen to it all the time, but one year, five years, ten years down the road this one will get dusted off and listened to again and again because it is timeless. Highlights include "Prince of Fire" and "Follow the Forest Lights".  Rating 5/5

    Best Album From November 2012:
    'From the Meadows of Opium Dreams' by THE WANDERING MIDGET

    Best Song From November 2012:
    "Lost Highway" by WO FAT

    Friday, 28 December 2012

    Weekly Mailbag for 12/24/12 - 12/28/12

    A look at what came in the mail this week with quickie reviews ...

    Various Artists - An Apple a Day - The second in the now five volume series of Apple records demos and highlights from RPM records is my favorite in the series.  Terrific entries from Gallagher & Lyle; The Iveys (Badfinger); Turquoise (one of my favorite bands); and the previously unknown The U (Don't) Know Who among more.  I didn't realize when I ordered it that The Cups "Good as Gold" is on this one.  Great song!  Tons of highlights here.  Highlights include "Black & White Rainbows (Iveys)" and "Woodstock (Turquoise)".  Rating 4/5

    Blue Oyster Cult - Agents of Fortune - Their fourth album is another solid entry into the band`s discography.  "Sinful Love" is a good song, it's interesting as it brings together an influence of Bob Dylan with hints of disco around the edges.  "Tattoo Vampire" was the rockingest thing they'd done in years.  And of course their big song.  Highlights include "[Don't Fear] The Reaper" and "The Revenge of Vera Gemini".  Rating 4/5

    Chains - Of Death - Drone metal from Slovenia, this is one of Chad Davis' (Hour of 13) many bands.  This was a special edition limited to 10 copies (jaw drops).  I got the last one.  It also came with the two track blood-painted demo CD that was also limited to 10 copies.  Not the kind of thing to listen to before bed while reading about sleep paralysis.  Highlights include "Anticosmic Void" and "Necromantic Force".  Rating 4.5/5

    Lord 13 - 2013 - This was one of the best stoner rock albums of 2011,  and though no music collection is ever truly complete, certainly no stoner rock collection is complete without this one.  A solid album with a few surprises including the appearance of Ben Ward on "Wicked Thing" and a flute-driven campfire acoustic number in album closer "Walking in Sin".  Highlights include "Grind It" and "Fire".  Rating 4.5/5

    the Lord 13 CD came in from Ozium Records and came with the CD below completely free and unannounced.  I didn't want it, I didn't ask for it, but hot damn if I ain't happy they gave it to me!

    The Brimstone Days - On a Monday Too Early To Tell - This was a complete surprise.  With their roots firmly planted in the late 60s this band works through 14 tracks of Hendrix or BOC style rock & roll boogie in the vein of Lord Fowl or Captain Crimson.  Phenomenal!  This is truly the Golden Age of Swedish rock and roll.  Highlights include "Same Old Story" and "I Need Soul".  Rating 4.5/5

    The Quartet of Woah! - Ultrabomb - This recently reviewed album just came in the mail and it's a package worthy of the epic music found therein.  This is really quite a different album with many surprising moments due to each member's unique set of skills and sensibilities.  There is enough variation and highlight material to draw the listener back for a long time to come.  Highlights include "U Turn" and "The Ultrabomb".  Rating 4/5

    Thin Lizzy - Vagabonds of the Western World - This is the best of the first three albums.  It's definitely the most consistently rocking effort of their early career.  The fast songs carry the seeds of "Jailbreak" within them and theslow songs aren't very slow at all.  Every song is excellent and Phil Lynott was beginning to come into his own as a visionary songwriter.  Highlights include "The Rocker" and "The Hero and the Madman".  Rating 5/5

    2012 Chronicle (Year in review) part 10 - Best of October

    October 1 - Dryasdust (ST Demo)

    October 3 - SautruS (Kuelmaggah Mysticism: The Prologue)

    October 5 - CHAINS (Of Death) - Clearly, you will notice, ambient drone doom is not a major area of focus around Paranoid Hitsophrenic but with Chad Davis involved I was more than happy to make an exception.  This is magic ritual music, more meditative and darker than Saturnalia Temple or Spectral Haze and more of a mood setter.  Find it here. Highlights include "Anticosmic Void" and "Necromantic Force".  Rating 4.5/5

    October 5 - DEMONIC DEATH JUDGE (Skygods) - Very much in the Dopethrone mold of just tossing off the grooviest riffs you'll ever hear as casually and as naturally as breathing, but throw in a Pink Floyd sensibility and you've gone from the head numbing to the mind expanding.  Very addictive stuff.  Read my review.  Download it here.  Highlights include "Skygods" and "Salomontaari".  Rating 4/5

    October 5 - Spiders (Flash Point)

    October 6 - OWL (First Album) - If one were to take the tone, attitude and sensibilities of Bay Area quartet Owl and paint it on the side of a van the resulting mural would depict dragons and motorcycles.  70s inspired hard rock with progressive tendencies and punky moments too.  Read my original review.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Medicine Mirror" and "Glaurung".  Rating 4/5

    October 8 - Talis (G.L.O.T.)

    October 9 - ICHABOD (Dreamscapes From Dead Space) - One of the year's best right here.  A psychedelic metal masterpiece.  So many standout moment it makes my head spin, "Looking Glass" and "Baby Yaga" to name a couple.  "108" had the critics chattering and raving.  The good news about the new year just keeps piling up as Ichabod is set to release their follow-up effort 'Merrimack' sometime in 2013.  I haven't heard any of it but I've got a strong feeling you'll be reading about them here this time next year as well.  Read my interview with Ichabod.  Read my review of DfDS.  Get the album here.  Highlights include "Huckleberry" and "All Your Love".  Rating 4.5/5

    October 9 - LORD FOWL (Moon Queen) - Another in a long line of great Small Stone releases this year.  This New England band's clean 70s rock sound is not the kind of thing I would have imagined I'd be into when the year started, but Moon Queen is stuffed with insanely catchy hooks. This is their second album and first on Small Stone.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Woman King" and "Streets of Evermore".  Rating 4/5

    October 11 - Beastwars (Tower of Skulls 7" single)

    October 11 - Zosimos (ST Demo)

    October 13 - Bottlecap (ST)

    October 19 - Bevar Sea (ST)

    October 22 - Bison B.C. (Lovelessness)

    October 22 - THE SWORD (Apocryphon) - Awesome old school metal with a sci fi sheen.  This was my first taste of The Sword and I found that its blade cuts deeply and eternally.  The album also features terrific cover art by none other than my favorite comic book artist, The Great J.H. (Jim) Williams III.  Read my review.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Dying Earth" and "The Veil of Isis".  Rating 4.5/5

    October 23 - BEDEMON (Symphony of Shadows) - This was another of my most highly anticipated albums of the year.  Old school doom from a real old school doom metaller.  Before there was Saint Vitus, before there was Witchfinder General, there was Bedemon.  This album happens to be really good, too.  Read my review.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Saviour" and "Lord of Desolaton".  Rating 4/5

    October 23 - Doommantia,  Vol. 1

    October 23 - MOS GENERATOR (Nomads) - Just a great hard rock record, the Washingtonians' first on Ripple Music.  So many awesome hooks it's ridiculous, "Can't Get Where I Belong", "This is the Gift of Nature" and "Lonely One Kenobi" to name a few.  Solid hard rockin' stuff from front to back.  Read my review.  Get it here.  Highlights include "Cosmic Ark" and "For Your Blood".  Rating 4.5/5

    October 24 - Mammoth Thunderpower (I Am Thunder EP)

    October 27 - NECRONOMICON (The Queen of Death) - Brazilian power trio Necronomicon's second release is a sacrificial ceremony on wax.  Combining the best elements of doom, Bay Area psychedelic rock from the mid 60s and occult themes their music is a red and black structure with green compartments.  Big riffs and sugary melodies draw the listener in for the schitzophrenic twists and turns the music takes.  Read my review.  Get it for the jaw droppingly low price of FREE on bandcamp.  Highlights include "The Queen of Death" and "The Assassin's Song".  Rating 5/5

    October 30 - Indian Handcrafts (Civil Disobedience For Losers)

    October 30 - Neurosis (Honor Found in Decay)

    October 30 - VENOMOUS MAXIMUS (Beg Upon The Light) - From one of underground metals brightest hopes to one of its brightest lights in under 12 months, Houston, Texas' Venomous Maximus unleashed the most unexpected album of the year, having switched gears from a fairly straightforward, but particularly good, stoner doom approach to a pure old school heavy metal assault.  The band is beginning to fulfill their destiny with 'Beg Upon The Light' garnering a ton of attention from bigger websites and in print.  They've made many a pundit's year end list and they have here as well.  Find it here.  Highlights include "Path of Doom" and "Give Up the Witch".  Rating 4.5/5

    October 31 - Albino Python (The Haunter of the Dark single)

    October 31 - Atragon (Wallowing Wizard single)

    October 31 - GOAT BONG (Goat Worship & Sodomy) - The work of a single madman, "Dirty" Mike Alcala, GW&S is a heavily synthesized instrumental doom riot.  "Sex, Drugs and Satan" is the motto on Goat Bong's bandcamp page and that certainly plays out on the 6-song EP, with plenty of humor, samples and riffs.  Highlights include "The Lost Art of Bong Rips" and "Cannabis Sativa Luciferi".  Rating 3.5/5

    October 31 - MAGE (Black Sands) - Leicester, England quintet Mage play a burly style of mossy stoner doom.  This is their first full length album, full of big riffs and some very memorable songs.  Aside from those listed below "Danse Macabre", "Degenerate" and "Witch of the Black Desert" are standout tracks.  Good mix of stoner and doom by way of the desert.  Read my review.  Find it here.  Highlights include "Cosmic Cruiser X" and "Drowning Doom".  Rating 4/5

    October 31 - Manlord (ST)

    Best Album From October 2012:
    'The Queen of Death' by NECRONOMICON

    Best Song From October 2012:
    "The Haunter of the Dark" by ALBINO PYTHON

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