“Treasure Island”/Running Wild, 2 More, and Folk Metal!

Oh man, so I finally got around to listening to the German heavy metal band Running Wild in the last week or so. Holy shit, I totally missed the boat on these guys. Anyway, so I decided to get on-board with Running Wild, and  then reaped many-a-rewards.

Aside: Wow, I just realized of the German foursome, or whatever their collective name is (they being Helloween, Running Wild, Grave Digger, and Gamma Ray), before my recent Running Wild listening that is, I had really only listened to Helloween. This is significant because there is a potential goldmine here. Wowza!

Here is a narrative(?):The first couple of Running Wild albums were okay. “Branded and Exiled” was definitely the first album that made my ears perk up. Then the door was blasted off with “Under Jolly Roger”. Running Wild was really speaking to me now. The followup, “Port Royal”, sledgehammered just as hard. I was sold. Rolf Kasparek is my dude.

On a semi-tangent, while listening to the epic Running Wild track, “Treasure Island”, I was reminded of the Russian folk metal band Pagan Reign for some reason. So now I am listening to a bunch of folk metal.

I like the recorder

PS: On a totally unrelated followup, I totally dig Opeth’s new album “Pale Communion” a ton. I like it better than “Heritage” probably-definitely. Super good.



"Goblin" is also an instant classic for me. What a song!

I think I like this album more than “Heritage” already. We shall see…..

PS: Is “Goblin” a reference to the Italian band Goblin? Probably.


"Pale Communion"

I’m enjoying my first listen-through of Opeth’s new record, “Pale Communion”. I just finished track 2, “Cusp of Eternity” - probably an instant classic for me.

With this release, it appears they’ve gone full-on progressive metal/rock. This is based on what I have already heard (from people) and what I have already heard (from personally listening to the album - currently on track 3, “Moon Above, Sun Below”, the only song that is 10 minutes+). This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as I really enjoyed “Heritage”. Sure, I adore the death metal aspect of the other Opeth albums, but this stuff is cool too!

Anyway….. I really like “Pale Communion” so far!

Onward and upward.



I’m intoxicated, so I’ll randomly post!

Right now, I am listening to a bunch of W.A.S.P., which has been pretty enjoyable. Blackie Lawless is good stuff.

Also lately, I have been listening to a ton of Ghoul. Specifically, the album, “Splatterthrash”, has received the majority of the plays. 1:31-2:39 in “As your Casket Closes”, wowza! Gurgling/Aweome-riff, cool surf rock lead, neato solo. I love it.

Recently, I also decided to check out Stryper. They play a heavily Christian bent version of heavy metal/hair metal. Cool material. Sometimes I’ll chuckle to myself as I realize the lyrics that are being sung, but overall the riffs and solos are pretty damn solid. Michael Sweet, folks.

Yay for music!


Whoa! I’m a homeowner!

So holy shit, I bought a house. Craaaazy!! To be honest, I feel very privileged to be able to do such a thing, even if it is ultra fucking terrifying. So far, it has been a ton of work (once the annoying, buying the house part was over), but totally worth it.

Musicwise, I have been listening to a lot of Mercyful Fate and King Diamond. Ceremonial Castings also released a new album (“Cthulhu”), and I listened to that a bunch. Iron Maiden too, as always.

Currently, I am listening to Ghoul’s first album, “We Came for the Dead!!!”. Pretty sick stuff.

I’m hoping to get this blog back fully swingin’ soon here; we’ll see if I can get that accomplished or not. Wish me luck!

Everyone be well!!

PS: The Mariners Splatterhouse’d the Blue Jays tonight. King Felix is ridiculously good. Go Mariners!!

PPS: There’s a super intense lightning storm happening right now. My dogs are not fans. :o(

Riff Raff and 16 Days!

Tonight was my first  foray into the rapper Riff Raff. I listened to his new record, “Neon Icon”. I wasn’t expecting much, but was pleasantly surprised. His flow seemed solid. The beats were solid. I will check out “The Golden Alien” soon.

Otherwise, things are getting close.

Other things I have been enjoying lately:

Yngwie Malmsteen, Warbringer, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Municipal Waste, Lana Del Rey, Cannabis Corpse, Vektor, Blood Freak, Cattle Decapitation.

Anyway, I hope everyone is well!

"Total Fucking Darkness"

"Total Fucking Darkness" is the title of an early Cradle of Filth demo. It is also the title of the demo’s re-release (along with some other tracks). That re-release was released today. Hells Yeahs.

Cradle of Filth was one of the first extreme metal bands that I got into, and was certainly one of the most important in my musical journey. I have yet to listen to this re-release, but I am quite excited to do so. I’m not sure what to expect really, as the tracks are early material (plus some re-mastering/etc.), but the album should be an fascinating listen nonetheless.

Wish me luck!

That is all for now. Life is getting more and more interesting. Yeah, interesting, that’s it.



I like making crazy faces while lip-synching to this band.

Aside: Doing the faces reminds me of one of my best friends ever, Aaron, who I will probably never see again. Sadface.


I find it insane that I have never scrobbled an No Doubt track before. Not “Just a Girl”. Not “Spiderwebs”. Not “Hella Good”. Especially “Hella Good”. Also not “Don’t Speak”. Shit, I’ve scrobbled “War & Peace” (an Ice Cube track) 11 times, and that track pretty much rips off “Don’t Speak”, in the chorus anyway.

Aside: “….an No Doubt track….” sounds wrong.

The time is getting closer. That being said, many, personally, annoying days are ahead. It will be worth it though - personally, anyway.


My “Last 3 Months” Artist Chart.

This is what this blog has come to…..

10 The Godfathers

Acid Witch



Feed Me



Judas Priest



Lately, I’ve been enjoying Metalucifer a lot. A band with albums titles such as, “Heavy Metal Chainsaw” and “Heavy Metal Bulldozer”, are as good as you might expect. The band is a side project of the Japanese black/thrash metal band Sabbat’s Gezol.

Randomly (?), I have listened to a fair bit of the thrash metal band from England, Sabbat (#13).

PS: It was WAY TOO HARD to decide between “Heavy Metal Chainsaw” and “Heavy Metal Bulldozer” for the post image, so I’m doing both.


"Spooky" is the recent split released by Acid Witch and Nunslaughter. It is good.

Acid Witch, why vinyl only releases (other than Full-Lengths)? I will forgive you if you release a new full-length soon (or, probably also if you do nothing).

Check it out!

Top 25 Albums of 2013

Hey, it’s not even February yet! Oh shit, it’s fucking March? Well, it wasn’t when I started working on this. Oh well….

T23. “Tales of Wanderings” – Old Silver Key (106 plays)

In 2013 I decided to begin using the genre tag post-black metal. Then I listened to a bunch of the artists that I was now classifying under that umbrella. Old Silver Key’s “Tales of Wanderings” was the biggest benefactor of this. An overall solid album from the super-group (Drudkh/Pest Noire/Alcest/Amesoeurs).

T23. “Skitszo” – Colette Carr (106 plays)

I came across Colette Carr and her album “Skitszo” because RedOne did many of the productions on the album. If forced to compare, I would say Carr is a somewhat like Ke$ha (perhaps more rap-y though). I’m sort of surprised to see the album make the list, but I did find the album to be pretty entertaining.

T23. “Never Cross the Dead” – Hooded Menace (106 plays)

Hooded Menace released a new album in 2013, but their 2nd offering (my favorite) ended up being the album that made the list. I love this album so much. It is an incredible [death-] doom release. Awesome vocals, awesome riffing. Awesome album.

T23. “Powerslave” – Iron Maiden (106 plays)

I consider “Powerslave” to be my favorite Iron Maiden album, and one of my favorite albums ever (regardless of the artist). I am glad to see it make the list;  truth be told, I probably don’t listen to it enough, so at least I’m not completely ignoring it.

T21. “Born of the Bomb” – Lich King (108 plays)

“Born of the Bomb” is a part of my Thrash-Lovefest-2013. This is probably my 2nd favorite Lich King album (after “Toxic Zombie Onslaught”). The song “Axe Cop” could certainly be a factor in that sentiment, but the album is pretty solid overall.

T21. “The Marshall Mathers LP 2” – Eminem (108 plays)

This release fell short of my hopes (as Eminem’s previous release, “Recovery”, is easily my favorite). That being said, this album is pretty solid, and definitely worth checking out if you’ve liked anything the rapper has done in the past.

T19. “theRAPeutic” – K-Rino (109 plays)

“theRAPeutic” is one one of the three albums that rapper K-Rino released in 2013. Usually, I might be concerned about an artist releasing albums at that pace, but K never disappoints. I would continue gushing, but I think I may gushed about K-Rino a time or two in the past.

T19. “The Diamond Head Anthology: Am I Evil?” – Diamond Head (109 plays)

Sometime during last year I decided that I really needed to explore Diamond Head’s discography. Instead I decided to go the “Greatest Hits” (is it one?) route – though this this 2-disc offering was pretty extensive. What I found was that I really enjoyed their music. I also discovered that I could hear the elements that were borrowed to form Metallica’s sound (as Lars Ulrich has famously praised Diamond Head for influencing him). I’m glad I took the time to check them out.

18. “Chemistry of Consciousness” – Toxic Holocaust (110 plays)

Thrash-Lovefest-2013! Joel Grind’s latest [Toxic Holocaust] offering was super solid, and I think an improvement over the last album, “Conjure and Command”. It might even be as good as “An Overdose of Death…” or “Hell on Earth” – maybe. Plus the cover art has a cobra on it, and cobras are awesome (no matter what Homer Simpson might tell you).

17. “The Murder Murder Kill Kill EP” – Necro (111 plays)

In 2013, I wanted to listen to more Necro, so then I did. “The Murder Murder Kill Kill EP”, Necro’s most recent release, got the most plays – unsurprisingly so, as the album is pretty damn good. “Toxsik Waltz” and “Tough Jew” stand-out as my favorites from the record.

T15. “The Dead Symphonic EP” - Zomboy (113 plays)

Interesting: back-to-back EP’s. Also interesting: Back-to-back EP’s with “EP” actually in the EP’s title. Zomboy is one of my go-to dubstep artists, and this album is one of the main reasons why – so good!

T15. “Thunder in the East” – Loudness (113 plays)

The warlock spells Akira Takasaki casts on this album are incredible. The riffs will crush your skull. The solos will shred your skin. I did a fair share of Loudness-listening outside of this record, but in the end, this is their best, and I couldn’t keep myself away. One of my all-time favorites albums.

14. “The Heist” – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (116 plays)

I’m glad to see Seattle natives, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, make the list. I’m not sure how I would feel about the artist if they weren’t from Seattle or if they weren’t so pro-Seattle sports, but they are, and those things are appreciated by me.

Aside: I feel like there is a lot of backlash over Macklemore & Ryan Lewis winning Grammy’s, mostly due to Macklemore not being a very good rapper and also robbing Kendrick Lamar and his album, “Good Kid, M.A.A.D City”. The part about Macklemore not being a good rapper, I just don’t agree with, obviously. As for robbing Kendrick Lamar, well, having never listened to “Good Kid, M.A.A.D City”, I can’t really speak to that (though I will listen to the album soon!). That being said, isn’t all really opinions anyway? Should I be angry that K-Rino or Brotha Lynch Hung didn’t win Grammy’s (since I think they released the best rap albums in 2013)? I guess I could be, but why would I be? Who decides on the winners anyway (they certainly didn’t ask me)? What does a Grammy win really even mean? Not much to me. Anyway, I really enjoyed “The Heist” a lot (Dave Niehaus, R.I.P.).

13. “Somewhere in Time” – Iron Maiden (119 plays)

More Iron Maiden – Yes!

12. “The Terror Tapes” – Gama Bomb (122 plays)

Thrash-Lovefest-2013! Gama Bomb scored again with their latest release, “The Terror Tapes”. I don’t think I like this album as much as their previous two, but it still does a pretty good job of keeping up with the Joneses (with the Joneses being the aforementioned albums, “Citizen Brain” and “Tales from the Grave in Space”).

11. “Dr. Living Dead!” – Dr. Living Dead! (125 plays)

Thrash-Lovefest-2013! Dr. Living Dead! was actually an artist I had been aware of for quite a while before checking out. Obviously, as it usually goes with these kinds of scenarios, I should have listened to them earlier. But I didn’t, and that cannot be changed at this stage. Thankfully, I did check them out in 2013, and their self-titled release got a bunch of plays.

10. “10” – New Kids on the Block (129 plays)

I won’t lie, I think it’s kind of fun that an album titled “10” ends up being the 10th most listened to album by me. Outside of that, the follow-up to 2008’s “The Block” was positively received by me. I didn’t like it nearly as much, but I still thought it was a solid release (thus, why it showed up here).

T8. “ARTPOP” – Lady Gaga (131 plays)

I was sort of surprised to see “ARTPOP” end up this high, especially considering how late in the year it was released. My opinion of this album has slowly grown over the last couple of months. Initially, I was kind of underwhelmed. However, the more and more I listened to it, the more I began liking it. My present day opinion is that I like it quite a bit (probably about as much as “Born This Way”, which I also liked). I like that the lead single, “Applause”, was slotted as the last track on the album because lead singles aren’t typically the last track on an album, and also because it aesthetically fits (as in, the album is over, so now applaud). Good stuff!

T8. “Keeper of the Seven Keys Part I” – Helloween (131 plays)

I listened to this album a bunch, obviously. That being said, the song, “A Little Time”, is the main reason the album shows up here. Good album nonetheless.

7. “Fear of the Dark” – Iron Maiden (135 plays)

Even more Iron Maiden! To be honest, I’m glad that of the 3 Iron Maiden albums to make the list, “Fear of the Dark” had the highest placement. That’s mostly because I feel that it is a little underappreciated, at least in terms of Maiden’s entire discography. Personally speaking, the album is one of my favorites by the band. Maybe it’s an anti-Janick Gers thing?

6. “Infestissumam” – Ghost (145 plays)

“Infestissumam” is the sophomore release from the band Ghost. I definitely liked their first album, “Opus Eponymous”, a lot more, but this album is still pretty great. “Infestissumam” is just a little less metal-y/King Diamond-y. That’s okay though; they’re probably still defining their sound (which can take some time).

5. “Lost & Found” – Ian Van Dahl (156 plays)

Really enjoyable album. A lot of “Crying” went on while listening to it.

Aside: Before now was written on or before January 30th. The rest was written just now in an attempt to, “be done with this madness!”

4. “Get Wet” – Krewella (168 plays)

I love this release because it is good, and because it is a full-length album from an electronic/dubstep artist.

3. “Witchtanic Hellucinations” - Acid Witch (174 plays)

This album just flat out rocks harder than most albums. An all-time favorite.

2. “The Maven” - K-Rino (177 plays)

The first of 3 albums K-Rino released in 2013. Really good. Love the song “Crhyme Scene” in particular.

1. “Mannibalector” - Brotha Lynch Hung (311)

The finale of the Coathanga Strangla trilogy. I wish I cared to write more right now, but I don’t.

PS: This post is garbage. I’m sorry.

Top 25 Songs of 2013

I wrote this over two weeks ago, and never got around to editing it - even now. So good luck. Wrote most of “…Albums….” over two weeks ago too. Hopefully before February ends. I wish I was joking. I can’t wait to get this blog back on track.

Mentions: Seattle Seahawks, Super Bowl 48 Champs!, Havok, “Warpaint”.

Here we go……

Hey, another list!

T24. “Ice Cream” – 현아/HyunA (32 plays)

This catchy little number is the first of several k-pop that made this list. This one comes to us via a solo effort from 4Minute vocalist 현아/HyunA. Like with me, this track will “…melt you down like ice cream”.

T24. “One Minute” – Krewella (32 plays)

This was one of my most played songs in 2012. Having discovered Krewella in late 2012, there was definitely some overlap plays (which certainly factored into its placement here on this list).

T22. “Tom Ford” – Jay-Z (33 plays)

I’ve never considered myself much of a Jay-Z fan. Part of that is never really hearing that much that I have liked. Another part is probably having really not heard a lot of his material. Then, after hearing “Holy Grail” on the radio a few times, I felt compelled to check out the rest of the album (especially after I perused the production credits). “Tom Ford” was the big winner for me, as the beat is wicked great.

T22. “Eating you” – Brotha Lynch Hung (33 plays)

This is the first Brotha Lynch Hung song to make the list. This one is a collaboration with the rap group ¡Mayday!. This song is a fantastic example of how perfect of a marriage Brotha Lynch Hung and Seven (Strange Music’s go-to producer) are. I especially enjoyed the guitar heavy section in the latter half of the song.

T20. “What About Love” – Austin Mahone (35 plays)

The past holiday season, I was out shopping with my wife and I heard this song being played out of the speakers at a Kohl’s (and actually another song that made this list [later] was played directly after, though I already knew that one at the time – weird). I was hooked pretty instantly. I asked my wife is she knew the song, and she said something along the lines of, “Yeah, this song in played on my teen-pop radio station all of the time” – did that sell me more? Maybe. Anyway, when I got home, I looked up the song, and perhaps unsurprisingly, I discovered it was produced my BFF, RedOne. The song’s respect grew exponentially. So anyway, I listened to the song many more times, and here we are.

T20. “Kiss” – 2NE1 (35 plays)

K-pop strikes again. This was one of the songs that certainly helped propel 2NE1 into the top 25 artists list.

T17. “Gentleman” – PSY (36 plays)

Following the media storm that was “Gangnam Style”, Psy had to eventually release another single. “Gentleman” was that single. Overall, I like it a lot; I don’t like it as much as “Gangnam Style”, but that’s okay. Widespread reaction seemed to be mixed, but I’m sure there was a bit of an anti-Psy sentiment within that mix (probably due to his over-saturated-ness). Some people would like to call Psy a one-hit wonder, but those same people probably only mean within the context of themselves and mainstream radio/media that they are exposed to. I say that because Psy has had 14 Top 40 tracks in South Korea (9 top 10’s, 4 #1’s) prior to “Gangnam Style” (both “Gangnam Style” and “Gentleman” were #1 tracks in South Korea). Not bad.

T17. “DangeRuss” – daryl strawberry diamonds (36 plays)

I came across this song at the beginning of 2013. The song is by artist daryl strawberry diamonds, a local Washingtonian. The song’s subject is that of the Seattle Seahawks and their QB, DangeRuss Wilson. Certainly the subject matter makes this song much more enjoyable to me, but I still enjoy it nonetheless.

Aside: The Hawks play the in Super Bowl this Sunday against [stupid] Peyton Manning and the Broncos. So pumped up – Go Hawks!

T17. “Mm-Ma-Ma” – Crazy Loop (36 plays)

Preface: There was some inconsistencies in terms of the correct tags for the song title and artist name. These are the tags that I went with.

This song comes from the solo release of Moldavian singer Dan Bălan (who was in the group O-Zone). This was a song that I was turned onto by my brother late in the year, and obviously I got hooked. Hooky as hell.

T14. “Tha Package” – Brotha Lynch Hung (37 plays)

Here’s another entry from Brotha Lynch Hung. This one is a collaboration with rapper Yelawolf. Both drop great verses.

T14. “Streets of Doc Town” – Dr. Living Dead! (37 plays)

This is a crazy catchy thrash song. Plus I am always a sucker for group-yelling vocals (“D.O.C., Li-ving-dead!”).

T14. “Staxxx in my Jeans” – Snoop Dogg (37 plays)

Back in 2008, long before he became Snoop Lion, Snoop Dogg released the album, “Ego Trippin’”. I finally got around to checking it out in 2013. Better late than never! “Staxxx in my Jeans” ended up being one of my favorite songs from the album (and the one that received the most plays). Rick Rock on the production probably helped this happen.

T12. “Live for the Night” – Krewella (38 plays)

Aside: This was the other song that played while I was at Kohl’s (along with Austin Mahone).

I’m firm believer that artists should put their “best”/”Strongest” song at #1 (the last track is also defendable). Sure, “best”/”Strongest” is an opinion and can be argued, but I believe in the idea regardless. The only issue with that is when you listen to an album for the first time and you’re like, “Oh shit, this song rules, and I still have the rest of the album to listen to”, and then song #1 is definitely my favorite song. “Live for the Night” was definitely that song. I liked the album, as a whole, quite a lot though - “Live for the Night” just blew me away.

T12. “Can’t Nobody” – 2NE1 (38 plays)

This is the fourth and final k-pop track to make the top 25. I said that I dove into k-pop headfirst, and I guess I did. 4 tracks of 25 is pretty impressive.

11. “Stranger in a Strange Land” – Iron Maiden (39 plays)

This is one of three songs to make the list that were released prior to 2004. I love Iron Maiden, so I was excited to see “Stranger in a Strange Land” show up here. Usually, I listen to Iron Maiden so evenly (full album listening mostly) that they never appear on the top songs list. 2013 was a funky year, I guess.

10. “Everybody Dance” – Kat DeLuna (40 plays)

I would not be surprised to find out that this song had made the list for every year that I have ever done this. I love this song; it is one of my favorites ever (and currently #2 all-time in terms of plays). I can’t not mention RedOne, so there’s that. Great track.

9. “Judas be my Guide” – Iron Maiden (41 plays)

More Iron Maiden! “Judas be my Guide” is definitely one of my all-time favorite Maiden tracks, so I’m glad to see it represented here. This is also, as you might have suspected, the second of the three songs to have been released prior to 2004.

8. City 2 City” – Zomboy (43 plays)

This is my favorite off of “The Dead Symphonic”. The vocals provided by Belle Humble were definitely one of the main reasons, as they mesh with the music amazingly. Dubstep needs more singing, dubstep artists!

7. “Crying” – Ian Van Dahl (46 plays)

When I originally discovered that AnnaGrace become Ian Van Dahl, I checked out their album, “Ace”. I liked the album, but not as much as I liked the AnnaGrace song “Let the Feelings Go”. Then last year, I finally got around to listening to “Lost & Found” and was much more pleased. “Crying” is easily my favorite track from the album.

6. “Crhyme Scene” – K-Rino (47 plays)

This track comes from the first of the three albums K-Rino released in 2013, “The Maven”. Beyond its typical K-Rino awesomeness, this track also got a lot of plays because the beat is fantastic (it makes me think of “Unsolved Mysteries” every time - Gary Remal Malkin!).

5. “Axe Cop” – Lich King (52 plays)

I love solos that happen at the beginning of songs, especially when there’s still a solo later in the song too. Lich King’s “Axe Cop” has a blistering solo near its start, and it gets me jacked up every time. I’m not really familiar with the webcomic by the same name, but the song slays hard nonetheless.

4. “Man Down” – Rihanna (53 plays)

“Man Down” was easily my favorite song from Rihanna’s “Loud” (and may be my favorite by her ever). I’m not sure what it is I really like about this song; I would say it is the reggae flare, but I’m not exactly a huge reggae fan. In the end it has to be Rihanna’s vocals, which are never disappointing.

3. “Krocadil” – Brotha Lynch Hung (60 plays)

“Krocadil” also follows along with the phenomena I explained in section on “Live for the Night” (if we ignore Intro-style tracks). When I first put on “Mannibalector” I was already pumped. Then as “Krocadil” was playing, I got even more pumped. I wasn’t disappointed in the rest of the album by any means (which is proven by 2 other tracks making the top 25), but “Krocadil” easily stands above the rest for me.

2. “A Little Time” – Helloween  (81 plays)

I listened to “Keeper of the Seven Keys Part I” and “Keeper of the Seven Keys Part II” a bunch in 2013. A funny thing happened though: I had sort of always had the thought that “A Little Time” was one of my lesser liked songs from the albums. However, during these recent listening sessions, all of a sudden, I freaking loved the song. The vocals are blazing and the music accompanies it well. It has become one of my favorite Helloween songs. It’s so odd to have a song do a 180 like that. It just shows that even if you didn’t like something at one time, maybe you should give it a chance later on at some point – you never know!

1. “No Let Up” – K-Rino (82 plays)

This was the #1 track in 2012 too, and officially became one of my favorite songs of all-time in 2013. I could go on and on about this track, but it all just comes down to K slamming verses with crazy skill.

Okay, well, I hope that made sense.

Top 25 Artists of 2013

Hey, what do you know, I didn’t lie!

You know how this works – or maybe you don’t. Well, if you don’t: I take my listening stats for 2013 and find out which artists, songs, and albums I listened to the most. Then I write a little blurb about each. Sounds like fun, yes? I hope so.

Anyway, here we go with our first list!

Aside: This year I have decided to include the # of plays because some of you might find that interesting.

25. Eminem (177 plays)

Eminem got a late push from the release of his latest album, “The Marshall Mathers LP 2”. To be honest, I haven’t listened to the album enough yet, but I thought it was still solid nonetheless. That being said, it didn’t quite live up to what I was hoping for, as his previous effort, “Recovery”, I absolutely adored. Standout tracks include: “Evil Twin”, “Rap God”, and “The Monster” (which references Seattle Seahawks QB, and total baller, Russell Wilson – Go Hawks!).

24. Powerglove (180 plays)

This was a band that got tons of play early in the year. Powerglove combines a power metal fury with video game joyfulness, and successfully so. I’m actually kind of pumped to see them represented here, as they do awesome stuff and deserve the recognition (or even just to remind me).

23. Ian Van Dahl (189 plays)

An AnnaGrace single I came across a few years ago (“Let the Feelings Go”) led me to discover Ian Van Dahl (who just essentially became AnnaGrace). Specifically, this year I got around to checking out “Lost & Found” and liked it a lot. The song “Crying”, in particular, got a lot of plays. More to come!

T21. 2NE1 (191 plays)

Due to some pestering from my brother, I decided to jump head first into the genre of k-pop. 2NE1 came away as my favorite artist (of what I listened to). I’m still not sure what the difference between pop and k-pop is (other than the artists being Korean), but 2NE1 has sweet material regardless.

T21. Britney Spears (191 plays)

Late in the year, Britney Spears released “Britney Jean”. Overall, I was kind of disappointed (a little too ballad-y, generally speaking, for me), but thought the album was okay. The song “Tik Tik Boom” is easily my favorite from the album though, and certainly it helped Britney crack the top 25.

20. Mercyful Fate (197 plays)

Being the terrible person that I am, it had been much too long since I had listened to Mercyful Fate’s “Melissa”. So I broke it out earlier in the year, and listened to it a bunch. Then I listened to some “Don’t Break the Oath”, and the some more “Melissa”. Good times were had.

19. New Kids on the Block (198 plays)

The fab 5 from Beantown released their long-awaited follow-up to 2008’s “The Block” (an album that I loved, and was pretty pivotal in terms of my transformation into liking pop music), “10”. While I didn’t enjoy the album nearly as much, I did like it quite a lot, and I think being #19 shows that.

18. Dr. Living Dead! (200 plays)

My lists may not show it, but I really started to love thrash metal in 2013. Dr. Living Dead! was one of the main bands that showed this to me. Good stuff!

17. Pearl Jam (203 plays)

I love Pearl Jam, and have loved them for about 20 years or more. In 2013, the band released their latest, “Lightning Bolt”, and I liked it quite a lot. The album persuaded me to listen their other material as well (particularly their last two albums, “Backspacer” and “Pearl Jam”, which I think are about on par with “Lightning Bolt”).

16. Thin Lizzy (207 plays)

The Phil Lynott led Irish rockers make the top 25 again this year. This is not surprising as they are one of my favorite bands of all-time. This year I also listened to my first Phil Lynott solo record, “Solo in Soho”, and thought it was solid (I’m sure this led to some additional Thin Lizzy plays  as well). Always & forever, Phil Lynott, R.I.P.

15. Zomboy (218 plays)

I got to listen to two new EP’s from Zomboy in 2013 (“The Dead Symphonic EP” and “Reanimated EP”), and both were excellent. When it comes down to dubstep and me, Zomboy is ultra consistent & dependable.

14. Krewella (223 plays)

Speaking of dubstep, Krewella released their first full-length, “Get Wet”,  in 2013, and I thought it was awesome. I just can’t express how much I love Krewella’s combo of dubstep music and pop vocals. I’m still disappointed that their name isn’t spelled “Cruella”, as in Cruella de Vil (mostly because who’s more evil than a women who wants to skin puppies to make a fur coat – then again, she is a cruel devil), but in the end their music is all that really matters.

13. Children of Bodom (232 plays)

There was a while there when Children of Bodom seem to be on the way out; I still liked their earlier material, but I felt their more recent stuff wasn’t as great (“Blooddrunk” was super disappointing and I never even listened to “Relentless Reckless Forever” for the fear that it would be even worse – maybe I need to check it out now?). For some reason or another, I listened to their most recent album, “Halo of Blood”, and was surprised by how much I liked it. It wasn’t as good as some of their classic releases, but it was highly enjoyable nonetheless. Additionally, which seems to have been a 2013 trend, I ended up listening to a bunch of their other tunes as well – thus the #13 showing.

12. Lady Gaga (242 plays)

“ARTPOP” was about on par with “Born This way” for me, which was awesome because I thought “Born This Way” was really good. I wish she would go back to working with RedOne more, but alas, that is my only real complaint with “ARTPOP”. In 2011, Britney Spears won the pop-singer battle for me, and this year Lady Gaga battled back to make things even. Assuming both release albums in another two years, who will prevail? Until then!

11. Hooded Menace (243 plays)

“Effigies of Evil” came out in late 2012, so there was undoubtedly some 2013 overflow. That being said, I listened to a shit-ton of Hooded Menace’s entire library in 2013, because Hooded Menace is super sweet, and have pretty much cemented themselves as on of my favorite bands (at least in a current sense). Great band.

10. Ghost (257 plays)

In 2013, Ghost released their 2nd full-length, “Infestissumam” and I listened to it a bunch. I also picked up their EP, “If you Have Ghost”, which they released later in the year, and that got a fair number of plays as well. I wouldn’t consider Ghost to be a favorite artist per se, but I do like what they do, and they do it pretty well.

9. Skinny Puppy (262 plays)

I have been a Skinny Puppy fan for quite a while now. However, in 2013 I picked up “Bites”, my first Skinny Puppy purchase in about a decade (since “The Greater Wrong of the Right” came out). I have, obviously, been pretty slow about completing my Skinny Puppy discography (though I’m pretty close – I have all of the Dwayne Rudolph Goettel era albums, outside of “Puppy Gristle”, if that even counts, and then “The Greater Wrong of the Right”, and now “Bites”). Regardless, “Bites” was super enjoyable, and the song “Dead Lines” was an instant favorite.

8. Necro (279 plays)

Early in 2013 I decided I needed to listen to more Necro. So I picked up a couple albums and listened to them a bunch. I enjoyed myself. I have to admit, I’m surprised to see that Necro made it this high in the list, but in the end, all is well, as Necro is a great rapper with appealing aesthetics.

7. Acid Witch (282 plays)

I finally got my hands on digital version of “Witch House” and “Midnight Mass”, the two EP’s Acid Witch released on vinyl only (curses!). That helped Acid Witch end up at #7. That being said, I listened to all of Acid Witch’s material a bunch in 2013, and it’s time I realize that they are one of my favorite bands ever (and that “Witchtanic Hellucinations” is one of my favorite albums ever).

6. Leviathan (300 plays)

It was another good year for Wrest and Leviathan. Leviathan continues to be loved by me – such incredible music.

5. Helloween (317 plays)

At some point in 2013, I decided I hadn’t listened to “Keeper of the Seven Keys Part I” and “Keeper of the Seven Keys Part II” recently enough. So I blasted the album a bunch. I will go much deeper into it, but the song “A Little Time” got an absurd number of plays (comparatively). I also listened to some of their other material as well (though mostly just the Michael Kiske era stuff, mostly anyway). Surprised to see them make the top 5, but maybe impressed is more accurate.

4. Loudness (331 plays)

I finally took my Loudness fandom seriously in 2013. What I discovered was that “Thunder in the East” isn’t their only awesome album, and that Akira Takasaki is a warlock (whatever that means). Riffs galore!

3. Brotha Lynch Hung (373 plays)

Brotha Lynch Hung released the final album in the Coathanga Strangla trilogy with, “Mannibalector”, and I listened to it a lot. Brotha Lynch Hung has proven to become one of my favorite rappers. I hope he sticks with Tech N9ne’s Strange Music label, and I’m super excited for his next release, whenever that might be.

2. Iron Maiden (670 plays)

What can I say? Iron Maiden is my favorite band of all-time, and I’m not surprised to see them here at #2 (they were #2 in 2012 as well). Up the irons!

1. K-Rino (797 plays)

For the 2nd straight year, K-Rino tops my charts, even if a little less dominating this year. What else can really be said here too? K is my favorite rapper, no doubt. It also helps that he released 3 albums in 2013 – I didn’t stutter, 3 albums (2 of which were awesome, with the 3rd just being really good). He also released an album in latter 2012, and that got some overlap plays. I will say this over and over, if you like rap, listen to K-Rino immediately. Like right now.

More lists coming soon!


"Warpaint" and "Eastern Frontier in Flames"

Picked up both albums today. Favorable reviews to this point for both. Go music!

2013 lists are coming - I promise!