by Fred Pessaro // BBG
RJ Ober w/ Magrudergrind at Warsaw in June (more by Joe McCabe)
Much like in years prior, in addition my own favorites list of 2012 I sought out lists from some of my favorite artists as well including members of Loss, Coke Bust, Witch Mountain, Magrudergrind, and much much more. We already posted lists by Eugene Robinson of Oxbow and Curran Reynolds of Today Is The Day, and we posted Trevor De Bruaw of Pelican on BV Chicago. Check out more lists of the best of 2012 according to select metal/punk/hardcore bands below.
RJ Ober of Magrudergrind, best non-punk/metal releases of 2012
Action Bronson - Blue Chips/Rare Chandeliers
Why pick one? Put anyone, let alone Alchemist, behind this dude and he's gonna beast out.
Andy Stott - Luxury Problems
With only a hint of the suffocating terror of last year's Passed Me By and We Stay Together, this one still feels like music from another planet, albeit a sexier, more ethereal planet.
Kendrick Lamar - Good Kid, m.a.a.d City
Somehow we're living in a time when this is what plays on Hot 97, and we could do a lot worse.
Martial Canterel - Empire
Every Martial Canterel release is impossibly better than the last and makes a year without a Xeno and Oaklander record slightly more bearable.
Swans - The Seer
To say this is a synthesis of every epoch of Swans doesn't do it justice. A beautiful throbbing, oversized, violent cave of sound. Thankfully their MHoW got rescheduled.
John Talabot - Fin
How you can make a record that feels like house music but completely obliterates the notion of genre is beyond me. This record makes me want to dance and I have no business dancing.
Burial - Street Halo/Kindred
I don't think I know what dubstep is anymore but I'm pretty sure someone lumped Burial in with that mess at some point. Fuck that. This is everything that is not: a collection of understated, muted, gorgeous sounds that never shows its full hand.
Merchandise - Children of Desire
Former Cult Ritual weirdo punks became indie music press darlings thus year, and with good reason - these songs are fucking gigantic.
Joey Bada$$ - 1999
Nothing that hasn't been done before, just done better and done by a teenager. Addictive flows over a lot of beats that should have been his in the first place.
Chromatics - Kill For Love
I didn't want to, but if I'm going to be honest with myself this one has to be here too. Doesn't really play like a cohesive LP, but that doesn't preclude Kill For Love from containing two of the most unstoppable tracks I heard this year.
Chris Bruni of Profound Lore, Top Ten Favorite Moments From The New Order Concert (10.23.2012, Toronto, Ontario)
1. When they played "Temptation"
2. When they played "Ceremony"
3. When they played "True Faith"
4. When they played "Age Of Consent"
5. When they played "Regret" (hahaha BBG, I couldn't resist)
6. When they played "Love Will Tear Us Apart"
7. When they played "Your Silent Face"
8. When they played "Bizarre Love Triangle"
9. When they played "The Perfect Kiss"
10. When they played "Isolation"
Jamie Getz of ex-Gods & Queens, R5 Productions, Top 10 of 2012
1. Cool Hearts Muay Thai Philadelphia morning classes
2. Fight Amp "Birth Control" & Live
3. Hop Along "Get Disowned" & Live
4. D-Clone "Creation And Destroy" & Live
5. Orgreenic 10" Fry Pan (if you're burning things, you just didn't season it right...)
6. Cloud Nothings "Attack On Memory"
7. The Personal TV's in the back of the seats on Quantis Airlines
8. Bob Mould "Copper Blue" Live
9. Cult Of Youth "Love Will Prevail"
10. http://www.unwoundarchive.com/ - Yes.
Nate of Witch Mountain, June 2012 (more by Fred Pessaro // BBG)
Nathan Carson of Witch Mountain, Best of 2012
13 Cities that I played in 2012 for the First Time Ever...
As Brian Wilson said, "I get around." But this year marked the most extensive touring that Witch Mountain has done to date, so I ended up marking some new territory.
1. Centralia, WA 4/27/12 - This was a lot like the "Rawhide" scene from the Blues Brothers. A real small cowpoke town in central Washington. A dive bar/diner with a four foot stage run by doom metal heads with hearts of gold. Local band was awful, and both our vehicles got pulled over on the way home. I got my first breathalyzer test. Blew a .006 and got sent home scott free.
2. Belmont, NC 6/5/12 - We played in a Haunted Mill run by Juggalos. 'Nuff said!
3. Portland, ME 6/11/12 - Six band bill in a motorcycle mechanic warehouse where they projected Holy Mountain and vintage porn on us while we performed. None of this was as memorable as seeing Prometheus earlier in the day and eating lobster with Lord Dying.
4. Toronto, ON 6/13/12 - Epic night as we shared the stage with our friends Blood Ceremony and Castle. The cops came and turned us down. In the US, police pull the plug on loud shows. But those polite Canadian mounties just asked us to bring it down a notch.
5. Rochester, NC 10/24/12 - Strangely enough, a local cop showed up at this gig too. Only this officer friendly was a fan, rocked out, and bought our new album. Great roast duck at the Vietnamese place across the street from Bug Jar too!
6. Hamilton, ON 10/26/12 - One of the worst gigs we played this year, and I entirely blame the promoter, who disappeared like a fart in the wind the second we were done playing. The bar still paid us, but we were left comparing Hamilton to even worse places, imagining potential future album titles like Hamilton Awaits, or Highway to Hamilton.
7. Ottawa, ON 10/27/12 - It was Halloween weekend, and this promoter did her job. Kick-ass show with special shout out to our friends in Monobrow and the amazing Muffler Crunch. Even better was the reception we got from the local radio DJs that took us back to their family home for refreshments and laundry.
8. Montreal, QC 10/28/12- Our first stop in Montreal back in June was a total bust. But the follow-up gig at Katacombes in October was sheer delight. The place looks like HR Giger designed it, with a central pillar of skulls and a spinal column on the bar. Great local bands (check out Show of Bedlam!) and great sound. It was Rob Wrong's birthday too.
9. Burlington, VT 10/29/12 - Apparently Nectars is the club where Phish made its name. Anyway, it was packed and we played well, but the vibe of the night was absolutely ruined by the nu-metal DJ. At least there were gravy fries...
10. New Haven, CT 10/31/12 - Halloween night, and we made a run to Walmart on they way there to get the cheesiest costumes we could muster. I was a gangster with a fedora and pinstriped zoot-suit, Neal had dreadlocks and a toga, Rob had a metal mask and vampire cape. And on lead vocals--Darth Uta. Also, the pizza was very very good. Too bad it was one of those venues where the bouncers practically carry you off stage so the dance party can start...
11. Worcester, MA 11/1/12 - "Woostah!" Wow, this place had been described to us as similar to the bar from Dusk Til Dawn and I cannot argue. Very lively crowd in a very rustic setting. My only complaint is that the Galaga machine cost 50 cents.
12. Asheville, NC 11/5/12 - Static Age records is a classy vinyl shop in a cute college town. I assume there are other sorts of towns in North Carolina, but I haven't been to any. Behind the back wall there's a tiny stage, perfect for the packed crowd we had on this Monday night. They wouldn't let us stop playing! Oh and I totally scored a Harold Budd record there. Rad.
13. Fullerton, CA 11/14/12 - Certainly one of the highlights of our tour was playing the Slidebar in Fullerton. Actually friendly security in that place (unless you're the drunk guy that got thrown out of our sound check). Was a real pleasure to finally play with Ides of Gemini. Wino came out to see us too. And the crowd was fantastic. In many ways, this was the finale of our year.
Best Albums of 2012
1. Rush - Clockwork Angels
2. Lost Lockets - Love Not Fear
3. Agalloch - Faustian Echoes e.p.
4. Wizard Rifle - Speak Loud Say Nothing
5. Ides of Gemini - Constantinople
6. Chelsea Wolfe - Apokalypsis
7. Show of Bedlam - Roont
8. Occultation - Three & Seven
9. Pinkish Black - self/titled
10. Atriarch - Ritual of Passing
R. LOREN of Pyramids / Handmade Birds
1. Locrian And Christoph Heemann "S/T"
2. Pinkish Black "S/T"
3. Fiona Apple "The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than..."
4. Blut Aus Nord "777 Cosmosophy"
5. The XX "Coexist"
6. Neurosis "Honor Found In Decay"
7. King Dude "Burning Daylight"
8. Theologian "Finding Comfort In Overwhelming Negativity"
9. Horseback "Half Blood"
10. Panopticon "Kentucky"
Paul Delaney of BLACK ANVIL
1) Van Halen - A Different Kind Of Truth
2) The Devil's Blood - The Thousandfold Epicentre
3) Ofermod - Thaumiel
4) Shining - Redefining Darkness
5) Marduk - Serpent Sermon
6) Behexen - Nightside Emanations
7) Rush - Clockwork Angels
8) Aura Noir - Out To Die
9) Glaciation - 1994
10) Secrets Of The Moon - Seven Bells
Corey Bing of FISTULA, Top 10 live shows this year
5. Napalm Death
Nicktape of Coke Bust, November 2011 (more by Fred Pessaro // BBG)
Nicktape of COKE BUST, Top 10 of 2012
1. Coke Bust & Sectarian Violence European Tours and our driver, Didi
2. Satan's Satyrs - Wild Beyond Belief LP (Trash King Records) + Live (Sick every time)
3. Suicidas (Spain) - Demo / New Tracks
4. Peacebreakers - Demo (Not sure if this is 2012 or older, but I got this year and love it)
5. Violent Reaction 7"
6. Graveyard Live @ The Underworld in London
7. Free Spirit Live @ Asefu's in Washington, DC
8. Pentagram Live @ The Filmore in Silver Spring, MD
9. Meeting Nika from Post Regiment
10. Stripmines - Crimes of Dispassion LP
Honorable mentions to: Double Negative live at the Black Cat in Washington, DC., Seeing Turbonegro in Gothenburg Sweden, The Flex Demo, Self-Employment, Chad Troncale (DHD) moving into my house, Prisoner Abuse, Belgrado live, Punchbowl Falls in Oregon, Devils Hand live/demo/advanced tracks.
Evan Patterson of Young Widows / Old Baby, best of 2012
Lying on a cliff and watching the moonrise over the mesas at Monument Valley.
Santa Fe, NM and my desert flower.
My first all covers performance as The Troggs.
Old Baby sharing the stage with Mike Watt and the Missing Men.
24 hour notice Young Widows pop-up show with Shannon Wright.
Fred Neil - self titled/Everybody's Talkin'
Daughn Gibson - All Hell
Thin Lizzy - self titled
Dr. John the Night Tripper - Gris, Gris
Tangerine Dream - Sorcerer
Mark Lanegan - Blues Funeral
The Peace - Black Power
Shin Jung-hyeon - Beautiful Rivers and Mountains
Mickey Newbury - harlequin melodies
Brad Boatwright of From Ashes Rise, Top 10 of 2012
The Secret "Agnus Dei" LP
Deviated Instinct "Liberty Crawls... To the Sanctuary of Slaves" LP
Wolfbrigade "Damned" LP
Xibalba "Hasta la Muerte" LP
Lynyrd Skynyrd, Entombed, Integrity, Amon Amarth, and Victims live at Hellfest in France
Territory "Sic Semper Tyrannis" LP
Fred Pessaro's karaoke performance of Ratt's "Round and Round" in LA
The 2012 Seattle Seahawks
And last but not least- my son, Wesley James Boatright.
Ryan Lipynsky of The Howling Wind / Serpentine Path, Top 10 of 2012
The Melvins - The Bulls & The Bees
Tragedy - Darker Days Ahead
Chelsea Wolfe - Unknown Rooms
HAARP - Husks
Drudkh - Eternal Turn Of The Wheel
Old Man Gloom - NO
Mgła - With Hearts Toward None
Deathspell Omega - Drought
Nekromantheon - Rise, Vulcan Spectre
Saint Vitus - Lillie: F-65
Jim Vrdrbr of Urfaust, Best of 2012
Satan's Satyrs-Wild Beyond Belief : Vinyl
Punk n Roll sleaze filth with nasty hooks and cuts! Fucking love this shit... Didn't knew it before, until I stumbled upon them through the amazing world of internet. This is how I like my drinking music: the soundtrack to any night of Intoxication!
Svartidauði - Flesh Cathedral : Cd
This is one hell of a sick monster! We had the honor of doing a couple of shows with them in Iceland and in Germany. Total crushing, sick and twisted Black Metal to the bone! A fist in the face of God, total Mayhem and Destruction! If you thought that their recordings are impressive: check them live when you have the chance.... This is a force to be reckoned with!
Those Poor Bastards - Behold the Abyss : Vinyl
As being a huge fan of Those Poor Bastards for a long time, I could;t wait to get this piece of vinyl on my player. I didn't listen to anything before I bought, I just wanted to listen to it and see if they could manage to get a sicker atmosphere than their previous records: They succeeded... Nothing more to add!
Best show of 2012 for me was easy: MENTORS at Vera, Groningen (The Netherlands)! I could not believe at first that MENTORS was doing a show in my hometown! And apparently, so didn't many others since there where sonly 25 people around (including the staff of the place)... My hopes weren't to big, but hell: they where excellent! The sound of the evening was superb, the band played really tight as hell, which was something considering the fact that Sickie Wifebeater was missing due a hand injury. One of the Hammerhawk guys filled in on guitar. They've played all their hits and did tons of encores! The retarded girls dancing on stage where the icing on the cake...
Stavros of The Atlas Moth, Best Albums of 2012
1. Koi No Yokan - Deftones
2. All We Love We Leave Behind - Converge
3. Aut Caesar Aut Nihil - Sektemtum
4. The 2nd Law - Muse
5. CVI - Royal Thunder
6. (III) - Crystal Castles
7. Failure Tactics - Millions
8. Ritual Of Passing - Atriarch
9. Confess - Twin Shadow
10. Pinkish Black - Pinkish Black
Kevin Hufnagel of Dysrhythmia / Gorguts, Top 10 meals I ate on tour in 2012 (In no order):
1. Huevos Racheros at Honey's Sit 'n Eat - Philadelphia, PA
2. The Pele Wrap at Highline - Seattle, WA
3. Sweet Potato and Coconut Soup at Cafe Kino - Bristol, UK
4. Migas with Sweet Potato Fries at Kerby Lane - Austin, TX
5. BBQ Pulled Chicken Plate at Central BBQ - Memphis, TN
6. Veggie Tofu Pita at The Earl - Atlanta, GA
7. Aztec Burrito at Golden West - Baltimore, MD
8. Homemade Meatballs and Pasta at Mean Metal Fest - Mean, Belgium
9. Smoked Bratwurst with Potato Salad at Restaurant Burgwächter -
10. Mystery Ukrainian food at Metal Heads Mission Festival -
Evpatoriya, Crima, Ukraine
Mike Wohlberg (illustrator/graphic designer), Top 10 of 2012
Gaza "No Absolutes in Human Suffering"
Converge "All We Love We Leave Behind"
Pig Destroyer "Book Burner"
Cattle Decapitation "Monolith of Inhumanity"
Bone Dance "Bone Dance"
Unraveller "Kinship Synthesis"
Early Graves "Red Horse"
Fight Amp "Birth Control"
Napalm Death "Utilitarian"
The Secret "Agnus Dei"
Dom of Pulling Teeth, Jan 2012 (more by Fred Pessaro // BBG)
Domenic Romeo (A389 Recordings), Top Ten Of 2012
1. My wife, children, cats and friends.
2. All things A389
3. KISS circa 1978-1982
4. Filling in on guitar for RINGWORM over the summer
5. All things ILSA, ISLA or LISA
6. FULL OF HELL live
7. Rediscovering THE UNDERTAKER AND HIS PALS
8. GEHENNA Rawwar demos
9. LEFT. FOR. DEAD.
10. DEVELOPING NATIONS STUDIO/Baltimore's hottest hipster: Kevin Bernstein
Matt Martinez of Landmine Marathon, Top 10 of 2012
Atriarch - Ritual Of Passing
Bouquet - Cave Life
Jar'd Loose - Goes To Purgatory
Asphyx - Deathhammer
Napalm Death - Utilitarian
Seas Will Rise - Disease Is Our Refrain
Grave - Endless Procession Of Souls
Mount Eerie - Clear Moon
Deviated Instinct - Liberty Crawls To The Sanctuary Of Slaves
Territory - Sic Semper Tyrannis
Krysta Martinez of Landmine Marathon, Best of 2012
Favorite live performances 2012:
Top 10 albums released in 2012 that I liked and don't see on every other top albums list:
Stoneburner - Sickness Will Pass
Lozen - Para Vida
Black Hole of Calcutta - ST
Mike Scheidt - Stay Awake
Gaytheist - Stealth Beats
Old Man Gloom - No
Killer Mike - Georgia Dirt
Robocop / Detroit Split LP
Roskopp / Needful Things (split 7")
Green Day - Uno
Other albums I listened to a lot in 2012 but that were not released in 2012:
The Body - All the Waters of the Earth Turn to Blood (2010)
Suffering Mind - Scourge Schematic Split (2010)
Honduran - Self titled 7" (2010)
Wormrot - Noise EP (2011)
Elitist - Fear in a Handful of Dust (2011)
Visceral - CTTTOAFF (2011)
Favorite movies 2012:
Ridley Scott's Prometheus
Marvel's The Avengers
Ryan Patterson of Coliseum / Black God Whips/Chains, Best of 2012
Life went in a lot of unexpected directions this year, so I heard fewer records and saw fewer movies than I normally would. I missed out on a lot of good stuff and look forward to catching up next year. This was probably my most productive year creatively while being the most difficult personally and emotionally. I won't be sad to see the sun set on this year.
Some good things:
• My wife and extended family.
• Bandmates and friends.
• Garage practice space and quarter pipe.
• J. Robbins and the new Magpie Cage Studio.
• Disappear From Sight show at Ultra Pop
• Will Allard and his Missed Connections studio.
• Wins for gay rights and reproductive justice causes in the November elections.
• Wild & Woolly Video.
• Wood burning stove.
• The Owlery in Bloomington, Indiana.
• Jason Noble: Friend and secular prophet.
Music I liked:
...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead - Lost Songs
Cat Power - Sun
Dark Ages - Can America Survive (2011)
Divine Fits - A Thing Called Divine Fits
Killing Joke - MMXII
Mark Lanegan Band - Blues Funeral
Melvins - The Bulls & The Bees
Merchandise - Children Of Desire
Michael Kiwanuka - Home Again
Salvation - House Of The Beating Hell
Slices - Still Cruising
Swans - The Seer
Tragedy - Darker Days Ahead
Songs my iPod tells me I listened to most this year:
Archers Of Loaf "Harnessed In Slums"
Blitz "New Age"
Christian Death "Romeo's Distress"
Cock Sparrer "Riot Squad"
Complications "A Story Of Alienation"
Crime & The City Solution "The Shadow Of No Man"
The Estranged "Lunacy"
The Lemonheads "Mallo Cup"
The Sisters Of Mercy "First & Last & Always"
The Sound "Skeletons"
Superchunk "Digging For Something"
True Widow "Skull Eyes"
Wire "Dot Dash"
Dylan Thomas of Landmine Marathon, Top 10 of 2012
1. "FUCK ALL YOUR SHOWS" -Eric Wood to Akron Family
2. Dinosaur Jr. live at FYF in Los Angeles
3. Orion Music and More Fest in Atlantic City, NJ
4. Graveyard- Lights Out
5. Windhand- Self-Titled LP
6. Pallbearer- Sorrow and Extinction
7. Dinosaur Jr.- I Bet On Sky
8. Iron Maiden live in Phoenix, AZ (Maiden England Tour)
9. Napalm Death live in Tempe, AZ
10. Samsara (Directed by Ron Fricke)
Chris of Sannhet, Nov 2012 (more by Fred Pessaro // BBG)
Chris of Sannhet, Top 10 of 2012
1. Krallice - Years Past Matter
2. Deathspell Omega - Drought
3. Ash Borer - Cold of Ages
4. Gaza - No Absolutes in Human Suffering
5. Sutekh Hexen - Behind the Throne
6. Primitive Weapons - The Shadow Gallery
7. Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Allelujah! Don't Bend! Ascend!
8. Tim Hecker & Daniel Lopatin - Instrumental Tourist
9. Guardian Alien - See the World Given to a One Love Entity
10. Fennesz - FA (Remix 12")
Ryan Butler of Landmine Marathon, Top 10 of 2012
1. Playing with Metallica at Orion Fest
2. Pallbearer -Sorrow and Extinction
3. Grave - Endless Procession of Souls
4. Tragedy - Darker Days Ahead
5. Graveyard - Lights Out
6. Asphyx - Deathammer
7. Seeing Negative Approach finally
8. Napalm Death - Utilitarian
9. Angel Witch - As Above, So Below
10. Katatonia - Dead End Kings
Honorable Mention: Opeth - Heritage, Witchcraft - Legend, Unleashed - Odalheim, Neurosis - Honor Found In Deacay, doing a chunk of Nasum's Grind Finale tour etc.
George Paul of Mutilation Rites, Best of 2012
1: Pallbearer - Sorrow and Extinction
2: Uhh Yeah Dude Podcast
3: High on Fire - De Vermis Mysteries
4: Savage Love Podcast
5: Revenge - Scum.Collapse.Eradication
6: Wait, wait, don't tell me! Podcast
7: This American Life Podcast
8: Radiolab Podcast
9: Converge - All we love we leave behind
10: The Moth Podcast
André Foisy of Locrian's Top albums of 2012 in no particular order
1) Moss Icon - Discography (Troubleman Unlimited)
2) The Thing/Neneh Cherry (Smalltown Supersound)
3) Swans - The Seer (Young God)
4) Zelienople -- The World is a House on Fire (Type)
5) Frank Rosaly - Centering and Displacement (Utech)
6) High Aura'd - Sanguine Futures (Bathetic)
7) Sun Splitter - III (Bloodlust!)
8) Gates - Eintraum (Land of Decay)
9) The Evens - The Odds (Dischord)
10) Anatomy of Habit - EP (Self-released)
11) Horseback - Half Blood (Relapse)
12) Morbid Saint - Spectrum of Death (Relapse)
Martin Van Drunen of Asphyx, Grand Supreme Blood Court, Hail Of Bullets, Top 10 live shows of 2012:
1-Obituary - Dokk'em Open Air, Dokkum, Netherlands - 30-06-2012
2-Coffins - Puntpop, Wuustwezel, Belgium - 05-05-2012
3-Destruction - Lez Arts Fest, Selestat, France - 27-07-2012
4-Slayer - Loud fest, Sofia, Bulgaria - 03-06-2012
5-Desaster - Turock Open Air, Essen, Germany - 01-09-2012
6-Suicidal Angels - Extreme Fest, Hünxe, Germany - 05-07-2012
7-Immolation - Hell Inside, Würzburg, Germany - 06-10-2012
8-Sodom - Puntpop, Wuustwezel, Belgium - 05-05-2012
9-Immortal - Umea, House of Metal Fest, Sweden - 03-03-2012
10-The Cult - Bataclan, Paris, France - 19-09-2012
Nikki Law of Century Media, Best of 2012
1- Iron Maiden (with Coheed and Cambria)
2- Paradise Lost (with Devin Townsend Project, Katatonia)
3- Graveyard (with Radio Moscow, The Shrine)
4- Wintersun (with Eluveitie)
5- Nachtmystium (with Andrew WK, The Atlas Moth, Bruce Lamont, Vestiges *SXSW showcase*)
6- The Atlas Moth (with YOB, Loss, Pallbearer *Scion showcase*)
7- Ghost (with Opeth, Mastodon)
8- Accept (with Kreator, Swallow The Sun)
9- Steve Vai
10- Watain (with Behemoth, The Devil's Blood, In Solitude)
Mike Meacham of Loss, Best of 2012
Anhedonist - Netherwards CD
NON - Back To Mono LP
Aldebaran - Embracing The Lightless Depths CD
Atriarch - Ritual Of Passing CD
Nekrofellatio - Dead Inside Me CD
Dagger Of Sacrifice - "Demo 2003" Cassette
Weapon - Embers And Revelations LP
Father Befouled - Revulsion Of Seraphic Grace LP
Vomit Chapel - The House Of The Lord Despoiled LP
Worm Ouroboros - Come The Thaw LP
Terence Hannum of Locrian, Top 10 albums of 2012
1) Trepaneringsritualen "Deathward to the Womb" 10" (Release the Bats)
Ritual bleak rhythmic death industrial. I was a massive Dead Letters Spell Out Dead Words fan and this direction for the lone operator is his most concise statement of negative purpose. Recently reissued by Merz Tapes in the US on cassette.
2) Sutekh Hexen "Behind the Throne" LP (Magic Bullet Records)
Blissed out scree, like if Flying Saucer Attack was fronted by Xasthur as they made a pilgrimage to some epic mountain top.
3) Andy Stott "Luxury Problems" CD (Modern Love)
Not metal, but darker than most metal was this year. Bleak deep low end, hopeless searching for that small light.
4) Vaura "Selenion" (Wierd Records)
I had the pleasure of editing the video for a track off of this album, and it still sticks around as an early contender. I imagine most of you know this record but I am shocked it isn't on more lists so far. Anyway its dark, brooding and expansive metal. Just the way I like it.
5) Deathspell Omega "Drought" CD (Season of Mist)
It's good. Between this and the LP box set discography the next turn for this esoteric black metal group better get you excited.
6) Skin Graft "In Cracked Cement" CS (Thirdsex)
Bleak noise here. Abandon all hope. This release has a slight variety to it, one that relieves and give us some new tones. Its a surprise if you know Wyatt's catalog. A good and haunting movement.
7) Vile Reign (Demo CDR)
Picked this up from the roadie guy for Lightning Bolt who apparently is the vocalist. Excellent quick whiplash black grind. Well recorded 3 track CDR. Find it and play it loud.
8) Pharmakon "Deserve It" CS (Chondritic Sound)
I've been a fan for a while. But this document of Margaret's set is brutal and hypnotic. This is purgative and cathartic yet it also conjures ominous clouds of hate. Just negative brutality. No supposedly brutal blast beat or retro filthy death metal riffage could ever come close to this soundtrack for self-immolation.
9) Hoax 7" (Painkiller)
Negative. Staring into the void. Like Sutcliffe Jugend covering Negative Approach, and their vocalist has that look, like he spent all his life filing down his teeth and he will dead eye stare you, cold-cock punch himself or anyone nearby. Vital.
10) There were some excellent reissues put out this year and I want to nod to these few:
Ramleh "Awake!" 8xCD (Harbinger)
Death "Spiritual Healing" 2xCD (Relapse)
Günter Schikert - Überfällig LP (Bureau B)
Ash Borer "Demo 2009" LP (Vendetta)
Morbid Saint - Spectrum of Death CD (Relapse)
Carl of Coffinworm's best of 2012
Top 10 of 2012:
Anhedonist - Netherwards
Killing Joke - MMXII
Knelt Rote - Trespass
Martyrdöd - Paranoia
Serpentine Path - S/T
High on Fire - De Vermis Mysteriis
Grave Upheaval/Manticore split LP
Fight Amp - Birth Control
Deathspell Omega - Drought
Inverloch - Dusk I Subside
Best live shows I saw in 2012:
Winter @ Power of the Riff East
Autopsy @ Reggie's, Chicago
Swans @ The Metro, Chicago
Motörhead/Slayer back to back @ Klipsch Music Center, Indianapolis
Fistula's improv 'fuck you/AIDS' set @ Double Door, Chicago
Iron Maiden @ Klipsch Music Center, Indianapolis
Wolvhammer at Union Pool, Nov 2012 (more by Fred Pessaro // BBG)
Jeff Wilson of Wolvhammer / Doomsday, Top 10 of 2012
Swans - The Seer
Killing Joke - MMXII
A Place to Bury Strangers - Worship
Godspeed!... - Allelujah!...
Atriarch - Ritual of Passing
Neurosis - Honor Found...
Pallbearer - Sorrow and Extinction
Converge - All We Love We Leave Behind
MGLA - With Hearts Towards None
Deftones - Koi No Yokan
Steven Hess of Locrian, Best of 2012
Godspeed You! Black Emperor (Constellation)
Pig Destroyer - Book Burner (Relapse Records)
KTL - V (Editions Mego)
Loscil - Sketches from New Brighton (Kranky)
Horseback - Half Blood (Relapse Records)
Jon Mueller & James Plotkin - Terminal Velocity (Taiga)
Swans - The Seer (Young God)
Vieo Abiungo & Peter Monro - Thunder May Have Ruined The Moment (Lost Tribe Sound)
Deathspell Omega - Drought (Season of Mist)
Brian Eno - Lux (Warp)
Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe - Timon Irnok Manta (Type Records)
GOG - Ironworks (Utech Records)
Heavy Rotators of 2012:
Raime (Blackest Ever Black), SoTL (Kranky), Mamiffer (Hydra Head/Sige), William Basinski (2062), Pan sonic (Mute), ∅ (Sähkö), Byetone (Raster-Noton), King Crimson (Island), Cluster (various), Popol Vuh (various), Neil Young (Reprise), Voivod (various), Genesis (ATCO), Gas (Kompakt), and Fennesz (Touch/Mego).
Joshua Brettell of Ilsa, Best of 2012
1. Beyond the Black Rainbow (movie)
2. Hooded Menace- Effigies of Evil
3. Tenement @ Golden Tea House, Philly
4. Windhand- S/T
5. Gay Marriage
6. Last Days Here (movie)
7. Meth Drinker/ Open Tomb split
8. Nicky Da B @ Fun Fun Fun Fest, Austin
9. Extermination Angel- S/T
10. Legal weed
James of Altar of Plagues / WIFE, Things I enjoyed in 2012, in no particular order:
The guys in Estonia who so badly wanted to show their appreciation that they came on stage mid-song and forced us to give them high fives.
Vatican Shadow mesmerising the audience with his 'like a man possessed' performance at Blackest Ever Black event in London.
The coffee in Toronto, Canada.
The endless inspiration provided by Unsound 2012.
Being invited by a guy in a venue in Baltimore, MD to listen to his bands new album in his car. I said "This sounds a lot like Pig Destroyer", he said "It is.".
Finally seeing SWANS live and having expectations far exceeded.
The words 'FREE BAR'.
SpaceGhost Purrp, Liars, Laural Halo, Jam City, Svartidaudi, Blut Aus Nord, Raime, Kendrick Lamar, Silent Servant, Holy Other, Vessel, Pig Destroyer.
Things I don't like about 2012:
Canadian boarder control.
My failing memory.
Ken Mode's Best of 2012
While in support of our 'Venerable' album, KEN mode went through approximately 4 bassists over the course of 2011. In April of 2011 KEN mode did a week's worth of dates with the Floridian Blackmarket Activities recording artist KHANN and at the end of that run the band's main songwriter, and general southern charmer - Andrew LaCour, offered his services to KEN mode to help fill in on bass if needed over the course of the next year. Little did he know we'd take him up on that only two months later. Over the past year and a half we have gotten him deported from Canada twice, made him take about 50 flights despite him being terrified of flying, had him play more shows with the band than any bassist we've had in our 13 years of being a band, and probably shaved 15 years off of his life. Throughout the course of the past year we've brought Andrew up to Winnipeg, Canada several times to rehearse for tours, for writing sessions, and for the eventual recording of our new album, Entrench (details of which will be released in January) with Matt Bayles (Mastodon, Isis, Botch, etc) this past September. Throughout these visits we discovered that this southern gentleman is one hell of a chef. The core of KEN mode being brothers, Andrew would spend a fair amount of time with the whole Matthewson family in his time in Canada; utilizing Shane and Jesse as sous-chefs in extravagant dinners for mom and dad KEN mode. So here it is:
KEN mode's TOP 5 meals Andrew LaCour cooked for Mr. and Mrs. Matthewson in 2012
-18 spice marinated jerk chicken with mango-cilantro salsa
- Lemon and dill spiced orzo with garlic shrimp
- Maple glazed, grilled salmon fillets with quinoa and stir fried veggies
- Cumin coriander ancho chili spice rubbed tacos with home made purple coleslaw and lemon jasmin rice
- Triple pepper sauce glazed red snapper
Oh, and here's some aggro records Jesse spun a lot in 2012 too:
Torche - Harmonicraft
Propagandhi - Failed States
ÆGES - The Bridge
White Lung - Sorry
Rise and Fall - Faith
Deathspell Omega - Droughts
Converge - All We Love We Leave Behind
Burning Love - Rotten Thing To Say
Dodecahedron - s/t
Gaza - No Absolutes In Human Suffering
Kim Kelly, Two Weeks' Worth of 2012's Most Memorable Gigs
Maryland Death Fest 2012 (Baltimore, MD)
Nuclear War Now! Live Ritual II (Berlin, Germany)
Martyrdoom Festival (New York City, NY)
Dublin Day of Death: Necros Christos, Scythian, Cruciamentum, Zom @ The Pint (Dublin, Ireland)
Cathedral of the Black Goat Festival II (Chicago, IL)
Vomitor, Negative Plane, Salo, Ominous Resurrection @ Public Assembly (Brooklyn, NY)
Roadburn 2012 (Tilburg, the Netherlands)
Primordial, While Heaven Wept, Vektor, Cormorant @ Tremont (Charlotte, NC)
Warvictims @ Kopi (Berlin, Germany)
Church of Misery, The Gates of Slumber, Hail!Hornet @ Siberia (New Orleans, LA)
Saint Vitus, Weedeater, Sourvein @ High Tone (Memphis, TN)
Sodom, Gospel of the Horns @ The Underworld (London, UK)
Ghoul, Toxic Holocaust, Landmine Marathon, Massgrave @ 920 Live (Tempe, AZ)
Vulcano, Scythian, Necroriser @ The Underworld (London, UK)
Justin Bartlett, Best of 2012
Horrendous "The Chills"
Antediluvian/Adversarial "Initiated In Impiety As Mysteries"
Antediluvian "λόγος" cassette
Aura Noir "Out to Die"
Nekromantheon "Rise, Vulcan Spectre"
Witchrist "The Grand Tormentor"
Cliff Martinez "Drive" Score and Soundtrack LP
Incantation "Vanquish in Vengeance"
Invocation show with Antichrist Kramer, Alexander Brown, Peter Beste, and Denis Kostromitin
Watching "Beyond the Black Rainbow" while incredibly high
Wrath Prayer "The Sun of Moloch"
VON "Satanic Blood" and live ritual
Black Breath "Sentenced to Life"
Unholy Crucifix "Ordo Servorum Satanae"
Adam Bartlett of Gilead Media, Favorites of 2012, in no order. Except Neurosis, that was best
Neurosis - Hope Found in Decay CD (Neurot)
Generation of Vipers - Howl & Filth CD (Translation Loss)
Deathspell Omega - Drought LP (World Terror Committee)
Hell - III CS (Eternal Warfare)
Mike Scheidt - Stay Awake CD/LP (Thrill Jockey)
Blut Aus Nord - 777: Cosmosophy CD/LP (Debemur Morti Productions)
Rush - Clockwork Angels (Roadrunner)
Cattle Decapitation - Monolith of Inhumanity (Metalblade)
Scott Kelly and The Road Home - The Forgiven Ghost in Me (Neurot)
Ash Borer - Cold of Ages (Profound Lore/Pesanta Urfolk)
Also good, in no order
Bastard Sapling - Dragged From Our Restless Trance LP (Forcefield)
Pallbearer - Sorrow & Extinction CD/2LP (Profound Lore/20 Buck Spin)
Anhedonist - Netherwards LP (Parasitic)
Samothrace - Reverence to Stone LP (20 Buck Spin)
Panopticon - Kentucky 2LP (Handmade Birds)
Subservient Fuck - S/t 7" (Human Resources)
Earth - Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light vol II (Southern Lord)
Northless - Valley of Lead 10" (Halo of Flies)
Northless/Light Bearer - Split LP (Halo Of Flies)
Velnias - RuneEater LP (Pesanta Urfolk)
Evan Caminiti - Night Dust (Immune Recordings)
Painted Cave - Not Here Not There CS (Dust Editions)
Winterfylleth - The Threnody of Triumph (Candlelight)
Guzzlemug - Nervously Counting Rosary Beads (Self-released)
Brian Barr of Aseethe/Wax Moth, Top 10 Albums of 2012
1. Swans - The Seer
2. Neurosis - Honor Found in Decay
3. Pallbearer - Sorrow and Extinction
4. Conan - Monnos
5. Bell Witch - The Longing
6. Monarch - Omens
7. Godspeed You! Black Emperor - 'Allelujah! Don't Bend! Ascend!
8. Horseback - Half Blood
9. Panopticon - Kentucky
10. Eagle Twin - The Feather Tipped the Serpents Scale
Top 5 Events
1. The Birth of my son Everett.
2. Gilead Media Fest
3. Aseethe West Coast Tour
4. Stone Beer available in Iowa.
5. Aseethe and Wax Moth releases.
Mitch Wells of Thou, Favorite Things That Happened To Me in 2012:
10) The West-Coast Thou/The Body Tour
9) Getting some Big Mouth Bites at Chili's
8) Eating burgers at Hodads in San Diego
7) Seeing Merchandise
6) Playing with/listening to DreamDecay
5) Playing with/listening to COWER (go get Mind Over Matter)
4) Playing with/listening to Shoppers
3) Going to Hawaii with my fiance
2) Joining the Wednesday To Wednesday Comic Crew w/ members of The Body, Torch Runner and Riley(you suck Riley!)
1)Getting engaged to the girl I talked about in last years list
Andy Gibbs of Thou, Best of 2012
RECORDS I LIKED IN NO ORDER:
Merchandise - Children of Desire
Useless Children - Post-Ending//Pre-Completion
Chelsea Wolfe - Unknown Rooms
Anhedonist - Netherwards
Godspeed - Allelujah! Don't Bend, Ascend!
Jessie Ware - Devotion
Grimes - Visions
Purity Ring - Shrines
Raw Meat - demo
Siamese Twins - demo
K-Holes - Dismania
Kowloon Walled City - Container Ships
Callers - Reviver
BANDS THAT WERE AWESOME LIVE:
Iron Lung (at least, the two songs they played before the cops came)
FUN THINGS I DID:
Moved to New Orleans
Moved to Oakland
Played Hellfest in France
Traveled Europe Without A Band
Played Gilead Media Fest and Hung Out With The Best People Ever
Survived Yet Another Hurricane By Drinking Whiskey And Dancing
Survived Yet Another Mardi Gras By Drinking Whiskey
Survived Writing Another Record
Lauren Jackson's (BV Contributor) Best of 2012
1. PRIMITIVE - Boston Strangler - I'm sure I'll get a lot of shit for putting this as my number one release of the year but I can't find a single flaw in Boston Strangler's Primitive. When I ask myself, "What do I want out of a hardcore record?" the answer is not as simple as many would think. I want brutality that straddles the line between the primal and the cerebral. While songs like "Gonna Make You Pay" and the eponymous "Boston Strangler" immediately impress as knuckle-dragging anthems, there is a certain sophistication to the overall delivery of this record... the same sophistication you'd find in the crimes of a serial killer. There's a reason for the name: the precision and repetition of a serial killer's work and, more importantly, the driving determination with which he approaches his cause are all the things that make Primitive a stellar hardcore record.
2. STILL CRUISING - Slices - Hardcore is an angry genre, and hardcore bands are usually angry about something, often political, occasionally emotional and rarely anything else. Now, personally, I love it when a hardcore band falls into that "anything else" category; when they don't take themselves too seriously and don't apologize for being mad about totally mundane shit. That's Slices, my friends. "Still Cruising" is an album that airs the grievances of mundane life: the pain of waking up, dragging yourself to your shit job, and remaining perpetually disappointed by reality. But don't take my word for it. Listen to the last track off the album, called "Mustard," and let lyrics like "What the hell is this?! A piece of bread?! Is this for lunch?! Is this for me?!" speak for themselves.
3. BLACK GOD - SpaceGhostPurrp - These are the sludgiest jams the rap game has seen since DJ Skrew. Purrp spits in the lazy, eyes-half-closed way dopeheads talk. But his beats keep the lean at bay; songs like "Osiris of the East" and "Get Yah Head Bust" lack typical hip hop bravado, opting instead for a cooler, subtler aesthetic infused with hollow tribal beats, dubstep and maybe even a dash of post-punk (but that might be wishful thinking).
4. AMERICAN WEEKEND - Waxahatchee - In case it's not clear yet, I'm a fan of minimalism. When it comes to music, that tends to translate into simple songs about simple emotions. But sometimes I find an album like Waxahatchee's "American Weekend" that reminds me of the complexity a seemingly simple song can hold. Waxahatchee is a girl (Katie Crutchfield, formerly of P.S. Eliot) and a guitar. With just her voice and a few chords, Crutchfield manages to convey the totality of being a twentysomething year old girl--the listlessness, the self-defeating behavior, the feeling of being too young and too old at the same time.
5. HOUSE OF THE BEATING HELL - Salvation - I don't know if Philadelphia's Salvation ever ends a show without leaving a trail of blood in their wake. When I listen to House of the Beating Hell, I understand why. The riff in "The Tethered Man" incites me to violence in an almost Pavlovian way. The slow drive of "House of the Beating Hell" sounds like the crushing burden of all my iniquities. Every song on this EP begs for violent release, but ends in a castrated, gasping desperation. And while that may not sound "pleasant" (I think it is, but maybe I'm a masochist), I give Salvation some serious credit for consistently sounding like they're forever blue-balled.
6. HANGING BY A THREAD - Suburban Scum
7. CREEM 12" - Creem
8. CHILDREN OF DESIRE - Merchandise
9. OPEN YOUR HEART - The Men
10. BURNING DAYLIGHT - King Dude
Honorable mention -
FLORAL GREEN - Title Fight
CONATUS - Zola Jesus
SPLIT 7" - Coke Bust/Vaccine
LOVE WILL PREVAIL - Cult of Youth
CELEBRATION ROCK - Japandroids
LOVE IS LOVE / RETURN TO DUST - Code Orange Kids