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2018: what happened to the ear

To sum up the musical results of the year – every time the lesson is not for the faint of heart. Certain things can be said at once, without looking at the calendar and without straining imagination: well, for example, a lot of new music came out, but most of it did not cause much interest, quite a lot – listened to on rewind… But surely there were records that were delayed in your playlist.

Summing up the results of the year, DARKER once again offers you a survey of our authors: what impressed us the most this year, what we consider the best albums of the year. It is clear that these lists will be impregnated with subjectivity for all 140 percent – but it is absolutely normal. Well, really, how many kilograms of Black Sabbath is more brilliant than Iron Maiden – or, for that matter, on the contrary? Objective assessment, it seems, can be only one: that had you on the ear.

Josie & The Outlaw

Basil Rusakov:
Heathen Apostles

It just so happened that almost all the musical novelties, hooked me seriously and for a long time, I wrote on the pages of DARKER — and you can read these reviews. But I will explain my choice in a few words. Unlike my colleagues, I will not risk to allocate places, so the order of listing albums is arbitrary.

Serrabulho — “Porntugal»

Gorgeous grindcore with a dash of devils-what, atomic clockwork music with tons of energy and the abyss of unexpected transitions. At the same time, the musicians, in the pursuit of originality, managed not to lose any pressure, no specific humor inherent in the style, no underground atmosphere inherent in the best examples of grind.

Heathen Apostles — ” Bloodgrass Vol. I & II»

If you missed the happy-go-lucky Blues and at the same time, like early recordings of Nika Kava (who was told about the “wild roses”? Sit down, two) – the disc will be a real gift for you. Gloomy, authentic, very cleverly arranged and well played – you do not have time to notice how you have already played it several times in a row.

Sigillum S – “The Irresistible Art Of Space Colonization and Its Mutation implementations»

Italian school of industrial, on the one hand, one of the most original in the world, but on the other – and one of the most respected. And Sigillum S, on the one hand, is one of the vertices of this flow, and on the other – a group that still retains activity and does not shy away from experiments. The new album, on the one hand, did not concede to classical records, and on the other – did not become their repetition. To rest on the laurels of Italian witches is clearly not intend to.

Sol Invictus – Necropolis

And another veterans and co-founders of the style in my collection – the British, who stood at the origins of dark folk. Wonderful, very atmospheric album that gradually draws to itself and did not let go, despite the outward restraint, and the inherent creativity of the group as a whole. And again – the album, with one side written in immediately recognizable manner of the group, but on the other – is distinguished by its elusive “finish” from the other works.

Josie & The Outlaw — Wrong Turn

Perhaps this album can be described as “out of competition”: in fact, it does not relate really to the dark music, it’s just a very good “psycho-Billy” — and then the question is, is it really Sayko. Musicians, not particularly unknown even in the English-speaking Internet, it seems, and do not bother with this question. They just play stylish and extremely addictive music, “buzz” and “delay” which is much more than in many of the creations of their more hyped “neighbors on the stage.” Actually, incomprehensible people, as it is impossible less similar to rock stars, which flaunt at the top of this page — this is they, the authors of one of the best albums of the past year, the beauty of which is almost impossible to explain in words.

Mountains Kulikov:
Aloha Swamp

5. Beyond Creation — Algorithm

Technical death metal is not for weaklings. From its members are constantly required to put inflated trims. And Beyond Creation in 2018 confirmed its competitiveness. Breaking stereotypes of the genre, the Canadians built a complex musical algorithm, which flows from the brutal technodat-zapilov stringy ambient meditation, delighting the ear with virtuoso performance.

4. Rolo Tomassi — Time Will Die and Love Will Bury It

This release is an English Matkarimov was one of the most anticipated in 2018. Not disappointed, because Rolo Tomassi here went far beyond Madara, showing dark and diverse musical experiments, confirming its status as the most talented group on matcor scene.

3. Jungle Rot — Jungle Rot

American death metallers from album to album are maturing and getting better every year, like Vietnamese wine. And on last year’s record, the same name of the group, Jungle Rot showed all their achievements over a 25-year career.

2. Carpenter Brut — Leather Teeth

The tremendous work of the French horrorszenario, probrowse your genre far forward, compromising retrouve, new wave and hard rock. In addition, the album shot the video in the spirit of the horror films of 80-ies with all necessary attributes, including the effect of VHS tapes, making a record still a masterwork.

1. Aloha Swamp — Swamp Vacation (All Inclusive)

The new project of the St. Petersburg guitarist Oleg Literately. At the time he popularized the genre sampledelica with the group “the Knife for Frau Muller” and created one of the brightest horror surf bands in the world “Messer Chups”. With Aloha Swamp Oleg did something similar with Hawaiian music.

Dmitry Fomin
Judas Priest – “Firepower»

5. Immortal – “Northern Chaos Gods»

A new Chapter in the vast annals of the Kingdom of eternal winter. Despite changes in the composition and ignoring the inevitable changes in the music world, Demonaz and Horgh to the last remained faithful to the tenets of militant and chilling black metal. This release continued the line of classic Immortal albums along the way acquiring an even greater monumentality and power.

4. Saxon – “Thunderbolt»

Exceptional energy, tenacity of guitar and vocal melodies, as well as steadfastness and noble pathos in the best traditions of NWOBHM – this is the twenty-second full-length work of the honored “Saxons”. A real challenge to all those who dared to doubt the combat effectiveness of the classics of this metal.

3. Five Finger Death Punch – “And Justice For None»

The dashing and unyielding California quintet presented a Mature, extremely rich and inspiring record, masterfully and in equal proportions combining the crushing weight of American groove metal and thoughtful lyricism in the best traditions of world rock legends.

2. Dimmu Borgir – “Eonian»

The tenth Studio album by the leaders of the Scandinavian symphonic black was a brilliant confirmation of the creative individualism of Dimmu Borgir and their desire for self-development. Of course the original work with a truly unique, attractive atmosphere, leaving far behind all the other works of Norwegians and at the same time preserving an unbreakable link with them.

1. Judas Priest – “Firepower»

The eighteenth Studio album of the legend of British heavy is a genuine admiration for its incendiary power, anthem-like hit and infectious uncompromising drive, very unexpected for the team of veterans with such a distinguished experience and extensive discography.

Andre Morrison
P. K. 14

5. Split Cranium — I’m The Devil and I’m OK

One project of Aaron Turner (Isis, Sumac, etc.). A scary mix of post-metal, hardcore, synths and low wheezing growl. Being a native of hardcore parties, Turner here does not do anything surprising, of course, but the music sounds fresh. Hardcore punk for modern people.

4. Immortal — The Northern Chaos Gods

After the departure of the Abbot, the band quickly rose to his feet, recorded new material (all the old achievements were claimed by the Abbot, according to rumors) and released the album, terrible, like a cyclone of Blashyrkh. The role of the vocalist took Demonaz, and turns him quite well, although slightly worse than the Abbot, in my opinion. Run this black metal tarahtelku most pleasant winter morning when the view from the window becomes black and white, and unhappy people, stooped and depressed, go to work.

3. 鸭听天 — 义乌情

Debut album Chinese experimenters 鸭听天 (Ducktrick) who would be pleased, perhaps even Glenn Branca (who died, unfortunately, in 2018). A mixture of rock, free jazz and psychedelia. At times there is a feeling that you have been thrust into the center of some South Chinese ritual and at the end of the album either the southern Dragon will appear, or Mao will rise, or maybe the whole apartment will grow psilocybami. The awesome power of the music.

2. Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross — Bird Box

Soundtrack to the movie “Bird box”. What Reznor and Ross is typical to listen to this in isolation from the film, but his movies (real word) music does not lose. And here you seem to have got themselves in a sad horror movie, but your kids now eat (spoiler — won’t eat). In General, I could finish the list with a new nine Inch Nails album for combo, but there is a whole article about it here.

Before the best (in my opinion) album I will mention five more, which, I think, made 2018 a worthy year, but I do not want to paint the advantages of which for various reasons:

The Good, The Bad & The Queen — Merrie Land (indie rock)

Orkan — Element (black metal)

The KVB — Only Now Forever (post-punk/shoegaze)

Snapline — Shou Hua (post-punk/experimental)

A Perfect Circle — Eat the Elephant (progressive rock/post-rock/whatever-rock)

1. P. K. 14 — What We Talk About When We Talk About His Name (当我们谈论他的名字时我们在谈论什么)

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