Tales From The Jugular - Staff Year End Awards for 2006!
STAFF AWARDS: DMS, EC, ETIAM, JONAH HAZE, NEEKOY, Frank Hill, VERITAS, VINAYA,
Top 15 Albums of 2006!
15. MASTERY- "Lethal Legacy"- Unbridled old-school thrash metal with NO vocals.
Turn back the clock, folks, it's revival time!! A true headbanger's delight!
14. BLOOD FREAK- "Live Fast, Die Young...And Leave A Flesh-Eating Corpse"- A fun
album from one of Razorback's better bands. A ball of energy that doesn't let up until the
very end. Grind your skull!
13. PRAXIS- "Sacrifist"- Great avant-garde music from one of the great
assemblages of talent ever on one CD. John Zorn, Bill Laswell, Blind Idiot God, Mick
Harris and many more contribute to this collaboration.
12. INCANTATION- "Primordial Domination"- This is NOT what music sounds like in
Hell. Rather, this is what Hell sounds like when all the music is turned off. Another
thick, brutal slab of death metal blasphemy!
11. EDGUY- "Rocket Ride"- One of the most fun bands in the entire metal
spectrum. They remind us to take it light and have a great fuckin' time. Metal with a rock
n' roll ethos!
10. IMPALED NAZARENE- "Pro Patria Finlandia"- The 'Slut' and his crew give us
another dosage of high intensity no frills blackened death metal. Nothing fancy, but
nothing trite, no bark, all bite!
9. PEEPING TOM- Perhaps the most sonically accessible project Mike Patton has done. This
is music that he says he would like to hear when he turns on FM radio. Don't let all of
that fool you though, this album is pretty deep.
8. AMOEBIC DYSENTERY- "Hospice Orgy"- Easily the best grind album of the year.
They add a few tricks to go with their high impact grindcore. Also some of the best
samples ever. They also have a full sized coloring book available. Be warned!
7. STRAPPING YOUNG LAD- "The New Black"- SYL's best album since
"City". 'The New Black' is aurally accessible, yet still full of all the quirks
and nuances that made their first two albums incredible. The clincher: Finally a studio
version of "Far Beyond Metal"!!!
6. LORDI- "The Arockalypse"- Finally a band brings back the balls to rock! This
album is FULL of rock n' roll anthem type material. Europe's answer to GWAR, only better!
5. HANK WILLIAMS III- "Straight To Hell"- The best country album to come out
since the 70's. THIS is what a country album should feel and sound like, not that
over-produced, watered down pathetic drivel coming out of Nashville these past 20 years.
If you are a fan of real country music, you need to check this out.
4. DEVIN TOWNSEND BAND- "Synchestra"- An album that is defined by it's great
atmospheric quality and musical artistry. Devin has never been afraid to push experimental
boundaries, but unlike some of his other forays, this is not jumbled. It flows very well.
3. DEICIDE- "The Stench Of Redemption"- I had permanently given up on Deicide,
but this one came out of left field and kicked my ass. Their best since "Serpents Of
The Light"! Ralph Santolla's great guitar soloing adds a new wrinkle to Satan's
2. JEFF WALKER UND DIE FLUFFERS- "Welcome To Carcass Cuntry"- Jeff Walker of
Carcass fame, and several of his other metal friends take a stab at doing 'metal-ish'
covers of old country songs. Many will mistakenly write this off as just a novelty act,
but fuck 'em...this is fucking brilliant!!!
1. GHOUL- "Splatterthrash"- Bang your heeeaaaaddddd!!!! Recycled to perfection
80's thrash riffs mix with (later-)Carcass worship to give us the best album of the year.
Tales of horror and gore that will inspire even the coldest hearted zombies to raise their
fists to the sky. Ghoul has managed to improve with every album, may that trend
Album Of The Year - In Flames - Come Clarity
1. In Flames - Come Clarity
2. Edguy - Rocket Ride
3. Winger - IV
4. Motorjesus - Deathrider
5. Iron Maiden - A Matter Of Life And Death
Worst Album - Vanize - Raw
Best Album Cover - Grave Digger - Liberty Or Death
Worst Album Cover - Virgin Steele - Visions Of Eden
Most Disappointing Albums
1. Vanize - Raw
2. Grave Digger - Liberty Or Death
3. Rage - Speak Of The Devil
4. Bang Tango - From The Hip
5. Pretty Maids - Wake Up To The Real World
Best Re-Issue - Trouble - Psalm 9
Best Video - Sepultura - Convicted In Life
Devin Townsend Synchestra : Devin continues his reign atop the lofty mountain of
prog/metal/rock fusion, in Synchestra releasing one of his most dynamic,
demanding, and emotionally baring albums. And thats saying a lot.
Ihsahn The Adversary : I was skeptical of Called By The Fire and still
skip it as often as not, but The Adversary itself is a remarkable (and
legitimate) tour-de-force through all of Ihsahns many talents.
Enslaved Ruun : Enslaved are nearly unrecognizable compared to the heavy-handed
heathens they once were, but damned if they dont write music as compelling and
subtly infectious as ever.
Anata The Conductors Departure : Not quite up to the standard set by the
monumental Under A Stone With No Inscription, but still shows growth and their
Tenhi Maašet : The best non-metal release of the year, and perhaps also deserving
of the most-improved award. Not that Vare was that bad, just that
Maašet is that good.
Communic Waves of Visual Decay : Sit down Nevermore, your successors have come into
their own. Norwegian and brooding, Communic roll out their second straight batch of
haymaker heavy metal clinics.
Keep of Kalessin Armada : The gamble of the year paid off, Keep of Kalessin are the
deserving heir to Absus vacant throne. Also gets the imaginary fastest
Pharaoh The Longest Night : Heavy Metal done right, which is disappointingly rare.
Not just fun, but intelligent and memorable for more than its sing-along choruses.
Mercenary The Hours that Remain : As remarkable in itself as it is for their
perseverance without main-man Kral Anderson. Mellowing out is usually a red flag in metal,
but not this time.
Belphegor Pestapokalypse VI : The anvil of the metal hammer this year. Belphegor
have always been troopers, but this album shows some serious skill and more than a few
subtleties. Time they got their due.
Blind Guardian A Twist in the Myth
Grave As Rapture Comes
Apocalyptic Visions Doomsday Device
Iron Maiden A Matter of Life and Death
Mouth of the Architect The Ties that Blind
Spawn of Possession Noctambulant
Gojira From Mars to Sirius
!T.O.O.H.! - Rad a Trest
Cellador Enter Deception
Plague Bringer As the Ghosts Collect, the Corpses Rest
Mirrorthrone Carriers of Dust
Mastodon Blood Mountain
SunnBoris - Altar
Yyrkoon Unhealthy Opera
Hammers of Misfortune The Locust Years
Rhapsody of Fire Triumph or Agony
Witchery Dont Fear the Reaper
Queensrˇche Operation Mindcrime: II
One Man Army and the Undead Quartet - 21st Century Killing Machine
Into Eternity The Scattering of Ashes
Tyr Eric the Red
Flotsam & Jetsam Doomsday For The Deceiver
Immolation Dawn of Possession
Urfaust/Circle of Ouroborous - Auerauege Raa Verduistering
Vader The Art of War
Splitter - En Sorglig Historia
La Rumeur des Chaines s/t
The Ruins of Beverast Unlock the Shrine
Smohalla - Smolensk Combustion
Should Have Disbanded Instead:
Deicide- The Stench of Redemption
In Flames Come Clarity
Lamb of God - Sacrament
Striborg Embittered Darkness/Isle de Morts
Cradle of Filth Thornography
JONAH HAZE Presents:
The End of 2006 Music AwardsThe Absolute 15 Best of 2006:(listed in no particular order)
Paul Stanley Live to Win--best work Paul has done to date.
House of Lords World Upside Down--If James Christian can keep this line up
together, hell have a top album every year.
Sunstorm Featuring Joe Lynn Turner--JLT, Dennis Ward, Jim Peterik equals best AOR
Desperado Ace--Dee Snider, Bernie Torme and Clive Burr, pre Widowmaker sessions
never released, Best work Dee has ever done.
Iron Maiden A Matter of Life and Death--better than the last two studio efforts,
and they are Maiden so you have to throw them in.
Venom Metal Black--same thing, its Venom so they get a free pass.
Winger IV--Kip and Reb and Rod have earned this one through delicately combining
new progressive elements with Rebs ever pleasing shredding.
Tipton, Entwistle & Powell--Edge of the World posthumous release for Cozy and John
that Glenn felt necessary to buy back from Atlantic as it was recorded and shelved in 96
in favor of Tipton recording Baptizm of Fire for a more youthful audience.
This is the record that we should have heard and after all the red tape it was released
this year by Rhino, which like Atlantic is a WEA company. Ironic?!
Glenn Hughes Music for the Divine--Hughes and recent best friend Chad Smith along
with longtimer JJ Marsh put together the most cohesive solo record for Glenns varied
and ambitious solo catalogue.
Black Label Society Shot to Hell--as proficient as Lemmy, Zaak and his society pour
pure pain everytime you turn around.
Nocturnal Rites Grand Illusion--one of Europes leading power metalers serve
up a heavier, darker sound each occasion and this is no disappointment.
Motorhead Kiss of Death--taught Zaak Wylde to never ever ever stop
Krokus Hellraiser--Marc Storace seems to be the only recognizable person in the
Krokus kamp but whoever is pulling the strings knows how to raise hell
Slamer Nowhere Land--Mike Slamer, longtime British studio and songwriting
guitar/producer hero brings AOR veteran vocalist Terry Brock along for a fascinating ride
through nowhere land.
Tony OHora Escape Into The Sun--former pipes for Praying Mantis takes his
solo flight into the sun. Beautiful melodies and sonic atmospheres fill this light to mid
power metal accomplishment from the sole pen of Mr. Magnus Karlsson (Last Tribe,
Rounding out the Rest of the Best:(in no particular order also)
Giuntini Project III featuring Tony Martin, Twisted Sister A Twisted
Christmas, Biss Xtension, Daniel McMaster Rock Bonham and the Long Road
Back, Blackmores Night Winter Carols, Faster Pussycat The Power and
the Glory Hole, Warrant Born Again, Moonstone Project Time to Take a Stand,
The Quill In Triumph, The Goo Goo Dolls Let Love In, Andersen/Laine/Readman
Three, Street Talk V feat. Goran Edmun, Empire The Raven Ride
feat. Tony Martin, Kingdom Come Aint Crying For The Moon, Demon Angels
Time of Confusion feat. Robin McAuley, Bang Tango From The Hip, Shark
Island Gathering of the Faithful, Priestess Hello Master, Sammy Hagar and
the Wabos Livin it Up!, Cheap Trick Rockford, Akira Kajiyama & Joe
Lynn Turner Fire Without Flame, Big Cock s/tPhilip Bardowell In the
Best of 2006 Reissues:
Desperado - Ace, Jack Russell For You, Fandango s/t feat. JLT, Fandango
Last Kiss feat. JLT, Fandango One Night Stand feat. JLT, Fandango
Cadillac feat. JLT, Ian Gillan Gillans Inn 2CD career rerecorded
Worst 2006 Reissue:
Jani Lane Back Down to One
Best Greatest Hits:
Poison 20 years of Rock 2CD
Best Live Recording:
Saxon The Eagle Has Landed III
Best Label for 2006 and has been for a couple of years and continues to dominate:
Frontiers Records out of Italy. Check em out at www.frontiers.it
Best Comeback 2006: Winger IV
House of Lords World Upside Down
Paul Stanley Live To Win
Twisted Sister A Twisted Christmas
Worst Comeback: Queensryche Operation Mindcrime II
Worst Covers Album: Def Leppard Yeah!
AND FINALLY THE WORST ALBUM OF 2006 AND WINNERS OF THE OFFICIAL OFFENDERS OF THE
FAITH AWARD: Queensryche Operation Mindcrime II--(They could have been
the next Priest or Maiden but the just dont get it, and this unholy exploitation of
a once revolutionary concept only proves that point.)
BEST 10 ALBUMS OF 2006
1. Sacrament - Lamb of God
2. Come Clarity - In Flames
3. Christ Illusion - Slayer
4. 10000 Days - Tool
5. Dante XXI - Sepultura
6. A Matter of Life and Death - Iron Maiden
7. As Daylight Dies - Killswitch Engage
8. Come Whatever May - Stone Sour
9. Of Vengeance and Violence - Dry Kill Logic
10. Blood Mountain - Mastodon
MOST DISAPPOINTING ALBUMS OF 2006
1. The Crusade - Trivium
2. Educated Horses - Rob Zombie
3. Nothing - Meshuggah
4. Shot to Hell - Black Label Society
5. Kiss of Death - Motorhead
BEST ALBUM COVER
1. A Matter of Life and Death - Iron Maiden/Come Clarity - In Flames
WORST ALBUM COVER
1. The Crusade - Trivium
1. Redneck - Lamb of God
Album Of The Year - In Flames - Come Clarity
1. In Flames - Come Clarity
2. Edguy - Rocket Ride
3. Communic - Waves Of Visual Decay
4. Desperadoz - The Legend And The Truth
5. Motorjesus - Deathrider
6. Bloodbound - Nosferatu
7. Blind Guardian - A Twist in the Myth
8. Mercenary The Hours that Remain
9. The Quill In Triumph
10. Strapping Young Lad - The New Black
Mother Misery - For the Crows
Down Factor - Murder The World
TK-421 - Disengaged
Overloaded - Hellsomething
Psionic - Psionic
Judas Priest - The Essential Judas Priest
Best Homage - Trivium - Anthem (We Are the Fire)
BEST ALBUMS OF 2006
1. Elvenking The Winter Wake Although this album
isnt as good as their first release, Heathenreel, The Winter
Wake is still pretty fantastic. Damnagoras lets an incredible amount of emotion out
when he sings, and the band does a much better job of fusing folk and metal elements than
they did on their last album, Wyrd. Its hard to explain how good this
album is in such a short space, so look to my review on this very site for more of an
2. Edguy Rocket Ride Although its more or less a
hard rock album, Rocket Ride is Edguys best overall effort since 1999s
Theater of Salvation. Tobias Sammets voice is as powerful as ever, and
silly songs like Trinidad just make me happy to be alive. Within their power
metal/hard rock niche, Edguy are able to maintain a great level of diversity, pulling off
acoustic ballads like Save Me and speedy, fun songs like Catch of the
Century with equal brilliance.
3. Amorphis Eclipse The comeback of the year. New singer
Tomi Joutsen is five times the singer that Pasi Koskinen was. In addition, the band
strayed away from the horrible path they had taken on Far From the Sun (an
album which I thoroughly despised) and went back to their roots a bit, fusing death and
folk metal elements with progressive rock and metal. Very possibly the best album of their
4. Eluveitie Spirit The first full-length from these Swiss
folk metallers, Spirit is one of the best folk metal albums ever. It contains
the perfect mixture of aggressive and traditional elements, with the guitars, violins, and
various pipes playing off of each other brilliantly. This is a new band with a very, VERY
5. Amon Amarth With Oden On Our Side Just like Amorphis,
Amon Amarth are another band thats been around for a while who may have released
their best album to date. Instead of the sort of typical, getting-the-job-done Viking
death metal heard on Vs the World and Fate of Norns, two albums
that were very good but not very innovative, With Oden On Our Side introduces
a whole new dimension to Viking death metal. Amon Amarth does a much better job
incorporating creative melodies and harmonies into their songs, and the fact that the
album flows around a specific concept gives the lyrics great meaning.
6. Summoning Oath Bound Its no Let Mortal
Heroes Sing Your Fame, but Oath Bound is still an excellent Summoning
album in its own right. Its a little less synth driven than some of their older
stuff, focusing more on their black metal roots. However, the songs on Oath
Bound are no less epic, and no less excellent, than tracks from their previous
7. Agalloch Ashes Against the Grain Another great release
from the American pagan/doom metallers, Ashes Against the Grain was by far the
best record to come out in the US in 2006. Agalloch arent afraid to push the limits
of extreme music with their aggressive yet majestic approach to making metal.
8. Korpiklaani Tales Along This Road Even though it made
my top 10 list, this album was a bit of a disappointment. It contains all of the excellent
Korpiklaani-ness (because there is no other way to say it) that Spirit of the
Forest and Voice of Wilderness had, but no more. Tales Along This
Road is basically a synthesis of Korpiklaanis past two albums, combining the
overt folk orientation of the first with the speed and melody of the second. A great album
when compared with other things, but not necessarily when compared with older Korpiklaani.
9. Blind Guardian A Twist in the Myth Another excellent
comeback from this longtime force of a band. A Night at the Opera was, in my
opinion, a pretty terrible album, where Guardian overdid every aspect of the music, with
poor results. A Twist in the Myth, however, does some serious damage. Guardian
combine the progressive elements of their last few albums with the classic speed metal
sound of their first few for an album that, with the exception of a few songs, is nothing
10. Cellador Enter Deception Celladors existence and
success gives me a lot of hope for the current American metal scene, where extreme metal
seems to thrive at the expense of traditional and power metal. Enter Deception
is as good as the majority of the power metal releases coming out of Europe over the past
few years. All the pieces are in place for this young band to become huge over the next
few years. In addition, theyre a superior, non-wankery filled alternative to
Honorable Mentions (in approximate order):
Destroy Destroy Destroy Devour the Power
Swashbuckle Crewed by the Damned
Bal-Sagoth The Chthonic Chronicles
Iron Maiden A Matter of Life and Death
Unexpect In a Flesh Aquarium
Arsis United in Regret
Devin Townsend Synchestra
Best Live Album Sonata Arctica For the Sake of Revenge
Best Re-Release Tyr Eric the Red
Biggest Letdown Angra - Aurora Consurgens
My Top 15 Albums of the Year:
1. Frank Hannon: Guitarz From Marz
2. Faith And Fire: Accelerator
3. UFO: The Monkey Puzzle
4. Riot: Army of One
5. Jorn: The Duke
6. Europe: Secret Society
7. Leverage: Tides
8. Michael Schenker Group: Tales of Rock 'n; Roll
9. Glyder: S/T
10. Circle II Circle: Burden Of Truth
11. Wolf: The Black Flame (dumb name, great Halloween album)
12. Winger: IV
13. Destynation: Rising Up
14. HammerFall: Threshold
15. Iron Maiden: A Matter of Life and Death
Honorable mention (good stuff that arrived too late for consideration in the top 15):
Pretty Maids: Wake Up to the Real World
Vicious Rumours: Warball
Vengeance: Back in the Ring
Motorhead: Kiss of Death
Cool Compilations: Primal Fear: Metal is Forever
Nightwish: Highest Hopes
Cool DVDs: Gary Moore and Friends: One Night in Dublin
Uli Jon Roth- Legends of Rock
Diamond Head- To the Devil his Due
Whitesnake- Live in the Still of the Night
Cool gigs seen:
Savoy Brown featuring Kim Simmonds
New Arrivals (best new artists/ releases)
1. Faith And Fire: Accelerator
2. Leverage: Tides
3. Glyder: S/T
4. Mike Orlando: Sonic Stomp
5. Destynation: Rising Up
Favorite New Band: Brain Drill
Favorite Cartoon Band: Dethklok
Favorite New Album: Cattle Decapitation "Karma.Bloody.Karma",
Honorable Mentions (New Albums): Tool "10,000 Days", Cannibal Corpse
Haunted The Dead Eye
Favorite Live Album: Slipknot 9.0
Most Disappointing New Album(s): The 6/6/06 Hot Topic Exclusive EP from Slayer,
Mushroomhead Savior Sorrow (I feel I must explain they are a great band, and
it was not a bad album at all. The addition of Waylon has done them well, however this
album did just not reach out and throttle me like their previous releases),
Favorite Special Edition Release: Opeth, Ghost Reveries
Honorable Mention Special Edition Release: Deicide, Stench of
Biggest Surprise: Metalocalypse, its about damn time that cartoons started kicking
Biggest No-Surprise: Axl Rose is still a jerk.
Most Pleasant Surprise: Hearing Jack Owen with Deicide.
Best Live Performance (In Portland): GWAR
Favorite Tour(s): Primus, The Unholy Alliance Tour (Slayer, Lamb of God, Children of
Bodom, Mastodon, and Thine Eyes Bleed)
Honorable Mentions (Tours): Cannibal Corpse/Dying Fetus, Machines At War (Fear Factory,
Suffocation, Hypocrisy, and Decapitated)
Least Favorite Tour: Black Label Society (Zakk either had too much to drink
. Or not
Tour Im Not Going to: Guns and Roses Chinese Democracy Tour (After
dropping the Eagles of Death Metal, the only reason to go to this show would be to see Axl
get in a fight with his band mates/fans/security
And even then I wouldnt pay
Favorite Aging Rocker that Rocked in 06: Ronnie James Dio
Honorable Mention (Aging Rocker): Bruce Dickinson, Glenn Danzig
Thanks for trying: Motley Crue
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