Notable Releases of 2012
Upon Which I Shall Now Pontificate
/A/ thru /F/
Angel Witch - As Above, So Below
Captures that very early ’80s metal vibe production-wise, but the songwriting’s not there.
Bataar - Owls and Snakes
Title track’s as good as the awesome “Vain Structures”, but that Dum Spirooey 2nd track gives me irritable bowels.
Blessed by a Broken Heart - Feel the Power
I first got into metal with the mid-to-late 80s L.A. bands that were all over the MTV, and this is a modernized throwback to that era, a genre (“modern eighties?”) that seems to be experiencing a resurgence this year.
Creature Creature - Phantoms
Sparse, yet dense — one of those albums that requires work to really appreciate. (Work that I didn’t bother putting in to it.)
Crucified Barbara - The Midnight Chase
LOVED their last two albums This one has a couple goodies (“Kid” and “Rules”), but even they feel a little… reheated. Not fresh out of the oven. Bummer.
D - Namonaki Mori no Yumegatari
Feels like they let the songs breathe a little more this time, instead of overpacking every second. The first two songs are surprisingly competent. Might actually get through the whole thing someday, as long as I don’t encounter any more songs with “lead accordion” on them.
Danko Jones - Rock n Roll is Black and Blue
The guitars lack definition and punch, and Danko seems to have lost a little of his edge. “Conceited” is okay, and “Type of Girl” digs some new ground, but the rest just doesn’t do it for me. Bummer #2 of the year.
The Darkness - Hot Cakes
This one ain’t growing on me. I loved Permission to Land (2003), partially because it was such an out-of-nowhere surprise. But now with expectations to meet, the Hawkins brothers can’t recreate the confluence of lucky events that made Permission so grand.
Dark Tranquillity - Zero Distance
Feels like 2002 all over again (which is good and bad).
Dead End - Dream Demon Analyzer
Haven’t listened to this album since the week it came out. I enjoyed it for that week, tho.
Dir en grey - Age Quod Agis (live dvd-a rip)
It’s just NOISE! (Well, “Toguro” and “Kodou” are okay.)
Dir en grey - Rinkaku
These guys are so focused on sucking that I predict a breakup by 2015. Because no one buys their stuff now, and soon no one will be attending their chock-full-of-toilet-soup-music-filled shows!
Exist Trace - Virgin
I own it, but I don’t know WHY. [Puts on Annunciation instead…] They’re on a very Despairs Ray-like trajectory of softening as they age.
…to be continued