Chris Galea

Important releases in 2014

  • (Keeping in mind there were also lots of albums I didn’t have the time to listen to……)
  • ARCHSPIRE – Archspire
  • AVATARIUM – Avatarium
  • CANNIBAL CORPSE – A Skeletal Domain
  • CETI – Brutus Syndrome
  • CLOVEN HOOF – Resist Or Serve
  • EMPYRIUM – The Turn Of The Tides
  • GAMMA RAY – Empire Of The Undead
  • HANS VAN EVEN – Stardust Requiem
  • MAGNUM – Escape From The Shadow Garden
  • MARTIRIA – R-Evolution
  • MEKONG DELTA – In A Mirror Darkly
  • MOETAR – Entropy Of The Century
  • NEOPLASMAH – Auguring The dusk Of A New Era
  • NUBIAN ROSE – Mental Revolution
  • OBITUARY – Inked In Blood
  • OPETH – Pale Communion
  • PENDRAGON – Men Who Climb Mountains
  • RING OF FIRE – Battle Of Lenningrad
  • RIOT – Unleash The Fire
  • RISE OF AVERNUS – L’Appel Du Vide
  • SAOR – Aura SEPTIC FLESH – Titan
  • SYNAPTIK – The Mechanisms Of Consequence
  • TARJA TURUNEN & MIKE TERRANA – Beauty And The Beat
  • TESLA – Simplicity
  • THE SKULL – For Those Which Are Asleep
  • THRESHOLD – For The Journey
  • TOURNIQUET – Onward To Freedom
  • TRIPTYKON –  Melana Chasmata
  • WALL OF SLEEP – No Quarter Given
Best comebacks
  • HELLION (U.S.A.)
  • LEAF HOUND (Eng)
Best gigs
  • TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA – ‘Hammersmith Apollo’, London – 11th January
  • BEHEMOTH + CRADLE OF FILTH + IN SOLITUDE + INQUISITION + SVARTTJERN – ‘The Forum’, London – 10th February
  • ONSLAUGHT + ARTILLERY + NIGHTLORD + ONE MACHINE – ‘Islington Academy’, London – 20th July
  • TROUBLE + LEAF HOUND + AMULET – ‘The Underworld’, London – 10th November
  • MORBID ANGEL + BENEDICTION + UNFATHOMABLE RUINATION – ‘Islington Academy’, London – 12th December
Most promising newcomers
Best films seen
  • “The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug’ (dir.: Peter Jackson)
  • ‘Muppets: Most Wanted’ (dir.: James Bobin)
  • ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ (dir.: Wes Anderson)
  • ‘Ironclad: Battle For Blood’ (dir.: Jonathan English)
Things I could have been without:
Too painful to elaborate.
Looking forward to in 2015

  • 2014 was a big improvement for me with regards to gigging (i.e. more and better) and I hope to continue this trend in 2015.
  • A Black Sabbath tour with Ward, Iommi, Osbourne and Butler would be great!
Cristina Somcutean
Important releases in 2014
  • Allegaeon – Elements Of The Infinite
  • Amadeus Awad’s Eon – The Book Of Gates
  • Amaranthe – MASSIVE ADDICTIVE
  • Animals As Leaders – The Joy Of Motion
  • Arch Enemy – War Eternal
  • Architects – Lost Forever // Lost Together
  • Arion – Last Of Us
  • The Contortionist – Language
  • Delain – The Human Contradiction
  • Devil You Know – The Beauty Of Destruction
  • Devin Townsend Project – Z2
  • Distorted Harmony – Chain Reaction
  • Epica – The Quantum Enigma
  • Evergrey – Hymns For The Broken
  • Insomnium – Shadows Of The Dying Sun
  • Linkin Park – The Hunting Party
  • Mayan – Antagonise
  • My Name Is Janet – Big Unveiling In The Town Of Dead
  • Ne Obliviscaris – Citadel
  • Periphery – Clear EP
  • Stream Of Passion – A War Of Our Own
  • Vanishing Point – Distant Is The Sun
  • While Heaven Wept – Suspended At Aphelion
  • Within Temptation – Hydra
  • Wovenwar – Wovenwar
Live show 2014
  • Amaranthe + Deals Death + Smash Into Pieces in March
  • Within Temptation + Delain in April
  • Gregory Porter in November (who isn’t metal but doubtless a wonderful singer)
Newcomer 2014
  • Arion all the way!
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • Releases:Timo Tolkki’s Avalon – Angels Of The Apocalypse Francesco Artusato Project – Our Dying Sun
  • Annoying people not accepting my vegetarian straight edge lifestyle
Wishes for 2015I hope to …… stay healthy and smiling

… listen to great releases by Nightwish, Symphony X, Carach Angren, Periphery and maybe also Seventh Wonder, Textures, Devil You Know etc. (and many more I surely forgot to mention)

… discover even more new music

… schedule enough time to write at least one hour per day

… be more persistent with my blog

… interview great musicians

… expand my knowledge about music in general

… see bands like Amaranthe, Nightwish and Kamelot (and many more) live

… pass my driving test as soon as possible in 2015 and drive a lot after that

… spend more time with my weird but very lovely friends

… travel a bit and visit friends

… make the right decisions regarding my subjects for the last two school years

… come up smiling semester one of four semesters until passing my A level exams and have fun meanwhile

… have a nice time working at Open Flair Festival in my hometown

… listen to even more metal than in 2014

Ewan Guild
Important releases in 2014
  • The Pineapple Thief’s ‘Magnolia’
  • Ne Obliviscaris’ ‘The Citadel’
  • Soen’s ‘Tellurian’
  • Transatlantic’s ‘Kaleidoscope’
  • Schammasch’s ‘Contradiction’
Live show 2014
  • Would have to be Ian Anderson’s ‘Homo Erraticus’ show, as it’s the only one I’ve seen so far this year. Bloody great,though.
Newcomer 2014
  • Thank You Scientist with their release ‘Maps of Nonexistent Places’.
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • Freak Kitchen’s ‘Cooking with Pagans’
  • Opeth’s ‘Pale Communion’ (though I doubt you’ll find many with the same opinion as myself)
  • Mastodon’s ‘Once More Round The Sun’
Wishes for 2015

  • That ‘Hand. Cannot. Erase’ by Steven Wilson will not only be an excellent album, but that it might be recognized in the mainstream.
  • That Periphery’s ‘Juggernaut’ will live up to the half decade of hype.
  • That Tool might actually release something. They’re in the studio, but who knows if what they’re doing will ever see the light of day?
Haydee G.
Important releases in 2014
  • Alestorm – Sunset on the Golden Age
  • Animals as Leaders – The Joy of Motion
  • Behemoth – The Satanist
  • Dark Fortress – Venereal Dawn
  • Demonic Resurrection – The Demon King
  • Devin Townsend – Z²
  • Epica – The Quantum Enigma
  • Falconer – Black Moon Rising
  • HammerFall – (r)Evolution
  • Machinae Supremacy – Phantom Shadow
  • Mors Principium Est – Dawn of the 5th Era
  • Ne Obliviscaris – Citadel
  • Opeth – Pale Communion
  • Vesania -Deus ex Machina
  • Xerath – III
Live show 2014
  • Distress of Ruin
  • Inkvisitor
  • Inthraced
  • Lost Society
  • Orion Nightfall
  • Ruoja
  • Shade Empire
  • Systematic Sickness Kin
  • Wolfheart
Newcomer 2014
  • Inthraced
  • Demonic Resurrection
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • Coffee
Looking forward to in 2015

  • I got a collection of new books, hopefully they’ll make a good read
  • Avengers 2
  • Seeing Nightwish live with their new and amazing singer
  • Seeing Moonsorrow live again as well
  • New releases from Carach Angren and Keep of Kalessin
  • Time II
Kenn Jensen
Important releases in 2014
  • Opeth – Pale Communion
  • Evergrey – Hymns for the Broken
  • Epica – The Quantum Enigma
  • A.C.T. – Circus Pandemonium
  • Kaipa – Sattyg
Live show 2014
  • Volbeat, Fængslet, Horsens – August 2014
Newcomer 2014
  • United Progressive Fraternity
  • In the Presence of Wolves
  • Blues Pills
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • Actually, not a whole lot – not even worth mentioning… bring on 2015.
Wishes for 2015

  • Hopefully great new albums from: Steven Wilson, The Gentle Storm, Symphony X, Queensrÿche, Seventh Wonder, Nightwish, Headspace and many more…
LyM
Important releases in 2014
  • Kampfar – Djevelmakt
  • Taake – Stridens Hus
  • Mr. Big – The Stories We Could Tell
  • Triosphere – The Heart of the Matter
Live show 2014
  • Aerosmith (Hellfest)
  • Vulture Industries (Southern Discomfort Metal Festival)
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • No personal regrets, but band people, please stop dying out
Looking forward to in 2015

  • Seeing Faith No More, Triosphere, and attending Karmøygeddon Metal Festival
Markus Falkenberg
Important releases in 2014
  • Dio (Tribute) –  This Is Your Life
  • Arch Enemy – War Eternal
Live show 2014
  • Tankard – The picture of those stage divers almost tearing down the stage lightning from the ceiling with their feet kind of stuck.
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • The drama around AC/DC’s drummer Phil Rudd is a shame.
Wishes for 2015

  • It would be nice for me to be able to go to more gigs again! Metal is live music after all.
Matt Fabi
Important releases in 2014
  • Mr. Big – The Stories We Could Tell
  • Blues Pills – Blues Pills
  • Tesla – Simplicity
Live show 2014
  • Iron Maiden headlining Hellfest 2014
  • Mr Big in London
Newcomer 2014
  • Blues Pills
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • The rude, obnoxious, heavy handed ‘tech’ for Soulfly who had to get the band to sort out the equipment because he didn’t know what he was doing and who sent me flying into a bass monitor. Seriously, eat shit and die.
  • The sad news about Pat Torpey of Mr. Big having Parkinson’s disease, and hearing that Malcolm Young has dementia.
Surprise of the year
  • Chris Broderick and Shawn Drover quitting Megadeth at the same time.
Best moments of 2014
  • Backstage with Nicko at Iron Maidens Hellfest gig
  • Seeing Pat Torpey still rocking with Mr Big
Wishes for 2015

  • To go to Graspop Metal Meeting, and to see Evile back on the road
Reinier De Vries
Important releases in 2014
  • VandenPlas – Chronicles of the Immortals : Netherworld (Path 1)
  • Exodus – Blood in Blood Out
  • Bloodbound – Stormborn
  • Scar Symmetry – The Singularity (Phase I – Neohumanity)
  • Sanctuary – The Year the Sun Died
  • MaYan – Antagonise
  • Legion of the Damned – Ravenous Plague
  • Appearance of Nothing – A New Beginning
  • Epica – The Quantum Enigma
  • Septic Flesh – Titan
  • Sonata Arctica – Pariah’s Child
  • Shadow Host – Apocalyptic Symphony
  • Diabulus in Musica – Argio
  • Delain – The Human Contradiction
  • Wolf –Devil Seed
  • Helstar – the Wicked Nest
  • Noveria – Risen
  • Mother of Millions – Human
  • Overkill – White Devil Armory
  • Accept – Blind Rage
  • Harmony – Theatre of Redemption
  • Mors Principium Est – Dawn of the 5th Era
Dutch diamonds:
  • MaYan – Antagonise
  • Legion of the Damned – Ravenous Plague
  • Delain – The Human Contradiction
  • Within Temptation – Hydra
  • Vandenberg’s Moonkings – Vandenberg’s Moonkings
  • Coldblooded – Coldblooded
  • Sinister – The Post–Apocalyptic Servant
  • Epica – The Quantum Enigma
  • Dictated – The Deceived
  • Thanatos – Global Purification
  • Neckbreak Nation – Stroke of the Devil’s Hour
  • Born From Pain – Dance With the Devil
  • Lord Volture – Will to Power
Songs that really impressed me:
  • Bloodbound – Satanic Panic
  • Van Den Plas – Vision 3ree – The Godmaker
  • Sonata Arctica – X Marks the Spot
  • Obituary – Visions in My Head
  • Exodus – Btk
  • Harmony – What If (nice lyrics)
  • Psychotic Gardening – Origin of the Infection
  • Vornth – Rip Rip Rip
  • Wolf – Shark Attack
Song with the most amazing lyric:
  • Psychostick – NSFW
Newcomer 2014 (for me):
  • Synaptik
  • Daydream XI
  • Noveria
  • Mother of Millions
  • Laugh at the Fakes
  • Night Mistress
Live show 2014
  • Trans Siberian Orchestra – Heineken Music Hall
  • Delain – Bolwerk Sneek
  • Freedom Call – Dokk ‘em Open Air
  • Obituary – Stonehenge
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • Stress and all the people (who have no experience and can’t even do it themselves) that have to judge you if you are doing your work o.k. expecting impossible things.
Wishes for 2015

  • My best friend’s four year old son getting better from the worst disease.
Rob Pociluk
Important releases in 2014
My top 5 of 2014 are…1. Opeth – “Pale Communion” 2. Nightingale – “Resolution” 3. Voyager “V”  4. Sólstafir – “Ótta” 5. Dream The Electric Sleep – “Heretics”
Live show 2014
  • King Crimson at The Egg, Albany, NY, 11 September, 2014
Newcomer 2014
  • In The Presence of Wolves
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • Musically, the new Anathema did nothing for me. As for metal, the Black Crown Initiate album was a massive disappointment.
Wishes for 2015

  • Steven Wilson’s album will be as good as the last one, more amazing interviews with artists that I admire and mostly that people find new music based on reviews I have written.
Sophie Ruhnke
Important releases in 2014
  • Epica – The Quantum Enigma
  • Delain – The Human Contradiction
  • Arion – Last Of Us
  • Tuomas Holopainen – The Life And Times Of Scrooge
  • Sonata Arctica – Pariah’s Child
  • Amaranthe – Massive Addictive
  • Arch Enemy – War Eternal
  • Insomnium – Shadows Of The Dying Sun… and many others
Live show 2014
  • Amaranthe in Munich
  • Sonata Arctica in Leipzig
Newcomer 2014
  • Arion
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • stress
  • that big family fight.. glad everything is okay now
  • the long distance between Cristina (yeah, Cristina, also member of Power Of Metal) and I
Wishes for 2015

  • great music
  • great concerts
  • some better marks in school
  • being healthy and all that stuff

 

Svetoslav Slaveykov
Important releases in 2014
  • Exodus – Blood In, Blood Out
  • Tormenter – Prophetic Deceiver
  • Usnea – Random Cosmic Violence
  • Mindwars – The Enemy Within
Live show 2014
  • Dream Theater – Along for the Ride Tour – 29 July, 2014, Festival Hall, Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Reactory – 22 May, 2014, Grindhouse Club, Sofia, Bulgaria
Newcomer 2014
  • Perceptionist
  • Hellrider
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • The careless attitude of Metal Blade toward the promotion and the media coverage of the European tour of DYING FETUS, GOATWHORE, MALEVOLENCE and FALLUJAH; and the lack of contact and communication with the tour manager for live report and interviews from the gig in Sofia, Bulgaria.
Wishes for 2015

  • More important releases, more good shows (2014 I visited a record number of lives hows… 46, with more than 120 bands… but few were really good) and more great newcomers for 2015!
Thomas Nielsen
10 most important releases in 2014
  • Obituary – Inked in Blood
  • Prong – Ruining Lives
  • Slipknot – .5: The Gray Chapter
  • Machine Head – Bloodstone & Diamonds
  • Vallenfyre – Splinters
  • Illdisposed – With the Lost Souls on Our Side
  • Devin Townsend Project – Z2
  • Vader – Tibi et Igni
  • Entombed A.D. – Back to the Front
  • Sanctuary – The Year the Sun Died
Best live experiences of the year:
  • Flotsam & Jetsam (Tobakken, Esbjerg, Denmark)
  • Carcass (Wacken Open Air, Germany)
  • Devin Townsend (Wacken Open Air, Germany)
  • Metallica w/ Slayer, Gojira and Ghost (The Prison, Horsens, Denmark)
Newcomer 2014
  • To be honest, no one really blew me completely away in 2014, but Aphonic Threnody released a very, very capable debut full-length, ‘When Death Comes’.
Things you could have been without in 2014
  • The deaths of the mighty Oderus Urungus and H.R. Giger. R.I.P.
  • J.B.O. What’s the point?
  • Islamic State. What century do these people live in?
Biggest hopes for 2015

  • That the rest of Faith No More’s new material is stronger than the first song released by the band.
  • That I get to see the reunited Life Of Agony live during the year.
Tommy Skøtt
Important releases in 2014
  • Xerath – III
  • Distorted Harmony – Chain Reaction
  • Hemina – Nebulae
  • Evergrey – Hymns for the Broken
Live show 2014
  • TesseracT (Lille Vega)
Biggest surprise to jump out of this year’s “METAL” cake is
  • Deceptic – The Artifact (Link)
Best video performance of 2014
  • Xerath – Bleed This Body Clean (Link)
The ULTIMATE prog metal tune of 2014
  • Xerath – Bleed This Body Clean
Wanted 2015!

  • Projects – A new project led by mastermind Finn Zierler of Beyond Twilight. Do I need to say more?
  • Wintersun – Time II. It was on my wish list the previous years, but here it comes again. I hope the “Sons of Winter and Stars” have arisen from their graves, and will surprise us in the upcoming year.
  • Seventh Wonder – It is time for frontman Tommy Karavik, who replaced Roy Khan in Kamelot, and been touring and tearing up the stages all over Europe, to return to his old prog roots with SW.
  • Headspace – They are currently working on their sophomore album, so I am crossing my fingers that the magic will happen next year.
  • Distorted Harmony – New EP in the making. Will it be a worthy follow-up to their beautiful crafted sophomore release? Well, 2015 will have the answer to that question \m/
  • Prospekt – best debut album of 2013 imo, and now they have something special brewing for the metalheads again. I really hope they will surprise attack me one more time \m/
  • Vildhjarta – THALL 2015 \m/.
  • Beyond the Bridge – My Germany neighbours and another favourite prog metal band of mine. I have high hopes that the band will return in 2015.
  • Kamelot – will Mr. Youngblood and Tommy Karavik deliver another masterpiece? 2015 will tell you…
  • Nightwish – with the announcement of new vocalist Floor Jansen teaming up with the already well-known and famous Finnish symphonic progressive power metal troop, this is one of my most anticipated albums of 2015.
  • Shattered Skies – with several critical acclaimed EP’s behind them, it’s time for their full length debut. I can’t wait \m/
  • Kingcrow – one of my favorite Italian progressive metal outfits out there today, and my anticipations are sky-high for the successor of “In Crescendo”, which blew me away in 2013.
  • Periphery – the forefathers of djent has finally revealed a double album to be released very soon…it will be huge, but will it be groundbreaking?
  • Solution .45 – a double album announced to follow-up on their critical acclaimed debut release “For Aeons Past”. I loved it, so I expect no less of the following two albums. Christian Älvestam is such a skilled vocalist and I expect him to fulfill his role again to perfection.
  • Teramaze – mastermind Dean Wells is a workaholic and never finds time to sleep. A follow-up is already in the making, and a new frontman has been announced as well. Yes, I am very excited \m/

Less meat and more muscles surrounding my bones… More money to visit concerts… And more spare time left for enjoying metal in my always busy calendar…

My top 20 “Knockout Kings” (in random order) of 2014
1.  Xerath – III 2.  Distorted Harmony – Chain Reaction 3.  Hemina – Nebulae 4.  Scar Symmetry – (Phase 1 – Neo Humanity) 5.  Threshold – For the Journey 6.  Anubis Gate – Horizons 7.  Teramaze – Esoteric Symbolism 8.  Insomnium – Shadows Of The Dying Sun 9.  Collibus – The False Awakening 10.   Deceptic – The Artifact 11.   Engel – Raven Kings 12.   Voyager – V 13.   Vanden Plas – Chronicles of the Immortals (Netherworld) 14.   Devin Townsend Project – Z2 15.   While Heaven Wept – Suspended at Aphelion 16.   Evergrey – Hymns for the Broken 17.   Malrun – Two Thrones 18.   Monuments – The Amanuensis 19.   Skyharbor – Guiding Lights 20.   Epica – The Quantum Enigma