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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2012, #9 – #7


MetalCatThe number of genres and sub-genres of modern metal far exceeds the total number of genres that existed in Western music 30 years ago.

There are more bands today playing classic-style heavy metal than there were at the height of heavy metal in the 1980s.

Since the advent of online music streaming and buying, more metal albums are released every month than the total number of albums of all kinds of Western music in 1980.

No one can possibly listen to every new metal album… but, oh man, it’s fun trying!

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2011, #20 – #17


MetalCat

Rare photograph of a New Zealand alligator playing the Belgian violin.

Yet again today I encountered some of the weird prejudices that prevail in the world of popular music, as in FM radio and the current Top 20 Best-Marketed Hits of the Week.

The young fellow I spoke to in a store was surprised that someone of my age, which is 64, would listen to modern music at all [Prejudice 1]. He was even more surprised that I would listen to something as weird as metal [Prejudice 2]. When I mentioned that I would be posting some of my favourite music from Sweden, Belgium and New Zealand, he exclaimed: “Oh, well, I wouldn’t listen to it anyway. I don’t listen to anything unless it’s from England or America because I can’t understand the words [Prejudice 3].”

I could add [Ignorance 1] but maybe they don’t speak English in New Zealand. Isn’t it a region in Mongolia?

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2009, #8 – #5


MetalCatHave I mentioned that Simone Simons is the most beautiful woman in the world and I <3 her? “Design Your Universe”; we all do that, unconsciously and instinctively, all the time. Everyone’s brain interprets external stimuli and experiences differently. We all internalise, modify and store memories that can never be the same as anyone else’s. Each of us does effectively inhabit our own, unique universes that our minds build for us.

If a Simone Simons is a twin-rotor helicopter in your universe, it must be a very interesting place.

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2008, #20 – #17


MetalCatMost of you were too young to listen to metal before this year. You were still doing “The Wheels on the Bus” and “Humpty Dumpty”. To help you catch up on some of the great music of the most recent years, I’ll be posting 20 songs per year from 2008 and after, not 15 or 10 songs. That’s four songs per day for a year per week excluding weekends.

If you’re still too young to listen to metal, see my parallel series, “Mammal’s Thousand Years Of Nursery Rhymes”.

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2007 / #6 – #4


MetalCatNear the top of my song ladder for 2007, two giant bands bracket a relative unknown. Symphony X and Epica shouldn’t need any introduction. Age of Nemesis, however, gained little following outside their native Hungary. That’s a pity.

 

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2003 / #6 – #4


MetalCatMy goodness, today we have a head-to-head between Angela Gossow, my favourite female growler, and Simone Simons, my favourite metal soprano. That’s just how the sorting worked out.

Black Label Society and Ozzy bring the temperature back down to normal in my office.

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2000 / #3 – #1


MetalCatIt does happen. The three songs I’ve chosen as my top favourites of 2000 all feature clean singing. I’m not particularly biased towards either dark or clean vocals, although most of the metal I listen to these days does have plenty of growling.

Dark Metal Cat has a growling purr and a clean sandbox.

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2000 / #12 – #10


MetalCatToday’s selection is doomy and black. That’s the sort of music that soothes me and makes Dark Metal Cat happy enough to stop ripping the furniture apart. I would clip his claws if I had tungsten clippers. He goes through about four sets of strings per gig.

 

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 1997 / #8 and #7


MetalCatPlatinum used to be the heaviest known metal that humans could handle safely. Denser metals tend to be radioactive. Iridium, which arguably has the highest specific gravity of the elements that doesn’t decay in fractions of a second, is toxic in its pure form.

I’ve discovered a new metal that can be as heavy as you want it to be. It’s called Mammalum. It seems to be just the right specific gravity to match whatever kind of metal I’m enjoying. I thought you should know that.

 

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Reggie’s Essential 25 Favorite Instrumentals #20 & #19


Warlock-Metal-Master-Blade-MMWGSVBKI love the power of a good instrumental song.  Sometimes they can be energizing or even relaxing depending on the band’s intent with the song.  Some bands use an instrumental song to display a different, sometimes softer side.  And, sometimes an instrumental is a collection of left over riffs and drum parts that didn’t make the final cut.  Or, perhaps they just couldn’t find the words to go with the music.  However they are composed, the instrumental song is a track I look for and hope to find on any album; though there are some bands where it’s almost an expectation.  This list is comprised of 25 word-less songs that I find essential to my music library.  I wouldn’t sweat over the exact order, but yeah the ones at or near the top of this list are definitely my favorites.  I know there are many more instrumental songs out there, but these are mine…so to speak.  This list is also limited to only three per band and only one band made this list three times.  Enjoy!

20.  Last of the Wilds – Nightwish

This song has a steady cadence that I like and also has some folk elements that give it a nice touch.  Symphonic metal bands do a good job with instrumental songs in my opinion.  My kids actually like this one too, they think it has a cool beat. When I first heard Dark Passion Play, this song was an instant stand out for me.  Other than that, this is one of the more simple entries without any in depth explanation…I just like it.

19.  Canto 34 – Five Finger Death Punch

I can’t say I wholeheartedly appreciate the direction this band has taken, but I am fond of the War Is the Answer album where this instrumental appears.  It’s a pretty mellow tune compared to most the album’s songs, but I like the guitar work; the riffing and the solos are the driving forces and for me that works out nicely.   The song has nice flow and up to now in this list you can probably tell that most instrumental songs I like are not necessarily the heaviest o
f songs.  There are some heavy songs on the way.