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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2004 / #12 – #10


MetalCatArjen Lucassen’s Ayreon kicks off today’s selection. I really look up to him. So does almost everyone. He is 2.03 metres tall (6 feet 8 inches). In nautical terms, he is more than a fathom deep. In astronomical terms, a beam of light that started at his toes would take approximately 0.0000000077 seconds to reach the top of his head.

Collectively, the members of Isis and Dark Moor have many more arms and legs than Arjen.

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2003 / #3 – #1


MetalCatIt may seem ironic that Chimaira wins one of the top three spots in my year-by-year hit parade a week after they finally split up, supposedly for ever. They made a live come-back that reportedly drew ridiculously small audiences.

Whatever the reasons for their calling it a day, I wish all of them well. They gave me some good listening, which is ultimately all that anyone can ask of a band.

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2003 / #15 – #13


MetalCatDark Metal Cat is very upset about today’s selections. He asked what I would be posting. “We’ll start with Nightingale,” I said. He thought I was talking about breakfast.

 

 

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2002 / #3 – #1


MetalCatThis selection completes ten years of my personal hit parades. Looking at the medals table to date (i.e. 2002), Sweden has had five of my favourite songs of the year; the USA, three; and the Netherlands and the UK, one each.

From this it is manifestly clear that my best musical place in the world is right here in my office, where I can listen to the best of every country.

At the end of the 21 years, I must work out a points system to name my top music country, my top band and my top metal genre over two decades.

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2002 / #6 – #4


MetalCatWhere were you on the night of September 4, 2002? Can you account for your activities at that time?

If I had to answer those questions, it wouldn’t be beyond the bounds of probability that I was in my office listening to one of these bands. Of course it’s just as probable I was playing “Baldur’s Gate” and reloading because I got killed so often.

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2002 / #9 – #7


MetalCatSoaring prog metal from Germany, thoughtful experimental metal from Sweden and stompin’ power metal from Spain. That feels like a good mid-week mix to me.

Dark Metal Cat caught and killed a mouse this morning. I had to buy a new one from the computer shop.

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2001 / #2 – #1


MetalCatOpeth does it again, taking Number One spot for the fourth time in the nine annual lists I’ve selected so far. Arjen Lucassen also does well again, this time with Ambeon.

 

 

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Roundtable album review: Aeon Zen – Ephemera


Aeon Zen CoverLabel: Nightmare Records

Release Date: 1 September 2014

Songs: 9

Length: 42 minutes

Genre: Progressive Metal

Studio Albums: 3 full-length + 1 EP

Location: UK

 

 

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2001 / #10 – #9


MetalCatMy opening selections for 2001 unrelentingly show what a musical hybrid I am. I’m grateful the other Metal State writers tolerate me. They probably do so only because of my youthful, boyish charm and my vast wealth.

Number 10 is prog metal but it could fit comfortably in a classic prog rock set. Number 9 is undeniably metal but its opening minute and the string interludes could be classic heavy prog.

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Retro Roundtable Review: Textures – Polars


polars-4f273e55ef3b3Label: Listenable Records

Release Date:  2003

Songs:  8 tracks, 56 minutes

Genre:  Progressive metal

Studio Albums: Drawing Circles 2006, Silhouettes 2008, Dualism 2011

Location:  Tilburg, Netherlands

For fans of: Strapping Young Lad, Cynic, Meshuggah, Dark Tranquillity, Iced Earth, Gojira

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