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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2006 / #6 – #4

MetalCatI hope you’ll find upliftment in the darkness and blackness of  a couple of today’s selections. Here’s some related information to uplift you — proof that you’re probably more intelligent than average. A study reported in The Guardian in 2007 revealed that a disproportionate number of members in the National Academy for Gifted and Talented Youth listed metal as their favourite music.

The Academy is a body of students who rank in the top 5% in academic achievements. Thus the brightest of the bright love metal the most.

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Song of the Week: Brutai – Relapse

BrutaiTo date, Brutai have only one EP, the self-titled “Brutai” released last year. Since forming in 2008, however, the band has caught the attention and won hearty approval from the cognoscenti in melodic, modern and djent progressive metal… and most deservedly so, in my Mammalian opinion.

This coming weekend Brutai will be playing on the main stage at Euroblast in Cologne. They’ll be playing to the die-hard fans of big names including TesseracT, Sikth and Animals As Leaders. Based on their previous live performances and the audience reception, they’ll add to the acclaim they’ve already won.

Brutai have timed the released of a lyric video to coincide with Euroblast. “Relapse” will be on their forthcoming album. This song is tasty enough to make me want that album.

The current line-up is Felix Lawrie on vocals and guitars, Henry Ryan on guitars, Michael Crouchman on bass, and new members Alex Lorimer (keys and backing vocals) and Mathieu Bauer (drums). You can follow the band on Facebook. “Relapse” is available as a free download at Freelease and Bandcamp. You can also get the “Brutai” EP from Bandcamp.


Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2006 / #12 – #10

MetalCatTwo modern variations of heavy metal appear on my list today. The added richness of more complex compositions and instrumentation doesn’t always appeal to “mainstream” heavy metal fans. Regardless, the old heavy metal roots are strongly evident. In my ancient, creaking mind, there’s still not much that can beat that chunka-chunka guitar sound, the powerful riffs, the soaring solos and those high tenor vocals.


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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2005 / #3 – #1

MetalCatToday we have Pink Floyd disguised as Dream Theater. We also have Kamelot and Circus Maximus as themselves. That makes it a progmost metal selection to end the week and 2005.

If a song is both brilliant and 24 minutes long, the only way to do it justice is to post all 24 minutes of it.


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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2005 / #9 – #7

MetalCatIn addition to prog death and prog metal, today’s dose of hits includes full-blown jazz metal. If you’re not familiar with the genre, this is your chance to practise moshing to a saxophone.

Not many metalheads are proggers, but Panzerballett proves that some of them are beatniks.

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2005 / #12 – #10

MetalCatToday’s selections portray articulate sensitivity, shadowy depths and a lust for hectic adventure. That sounds like the psychological profile of a typical metal fan. Has anyone told you you’re a strange bunch?



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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2005 / #15 – #13

MetalCatToday I blithely invite the most scathing criticism from people who may assert that none of my three selections are real metal. They may say post hardcore is progressive punk, “Drone” is art rock and Sieges Even play neo-prog, not prog metal.

I asked Dark Metal Cat how he would respond. He licked himself in a place I can’t.

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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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