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stonerrock.eu is not dead. As Tim has already announced in his statement in December, the platform will stay online for music- relevant contributions and will still offer you visual impressions via live pictures.
But there’s another item from the previous year we owe you: our personal top 5 albums published in 2015!
Well, it was a very headstrong year. A year, that was full of politically and socially happenings which were almost too much to digest mentally. Where hatred, resentment, terrorism and blind ignorance enthroned but also helpfulness, tolerance, compassion and love were present. As a music lover or even an artist, these are the reasons to continue, to form creative processes and generate positive feelings to each other. In hard times like these, in which the society is so scattered, you can only hope for a medium that shares this positive thinking and also contributes to the world. Thanks to everyone that would not be shut down in this shattered world of xenophobia and thanks for keep creating the most beautiful language in the world: music
For 2015, our editors Luca and Ruth have compiled their personal favorite albums of the year, made known opinions and rant about bands. Have fun with it, remain healthy!
Peace, Love, Fuck Terrorism!
Ruth on behalf of stonerrock.eu
Luca’s Top 5
1. Elder – Lore
Elder carries it all home to Boston: Best album, best Song („Lore“) and one of the best live-gig (Elder/Weedpecker at Chemiefabrik Dresden). The meandering song structures and auditive landscapes provide a majestic grandeur to „Lore“. The whole thing has hardly anything to do with stoner-rock anymore (except the reoccurring heavy riffage), as the careful arrangements turn the record into what I’d call prog. If you didn’t give this album a spin, it‘s your own fault.
2. Dopethrone – Hochelaga
The three Canadians of Dopethrone have delivered what could be the most dirty album of the last year. „Hochelaga“ mixes uncompromising Doom with a rousing groove and places it all in a strong marinade of whiskey and marijuana. Thus making it the ultimate hymn for intoxicated ways home and hung-over afternoons.
3. Weedpecker – II
For me surprise and discovery of the year is the Polish band Weedpecker. I didn’t know them until they opened up for Elder in Dresden, but they ripped it and pulled off an outstanding set. Their second album convinces with a refreshing mix of constructing calm and harmonic hippie-spheres just to pull them down with a mighty hammer of fuzz later on. Catch these guys live, if you can!
4. Rotor – Fünf
The award for „best German band“ hast go to Rotor. Similar to Weedpecker the guys from Berlin mix peacy songs (i.e. „Rabensol“) and heavy-hitters like „Volllast“ or „Fette Kette“. The record features so many infectious riffs, that you may even forget about their former classics like „Drehmoment“. The addition of a second guitarist really does the trick! In my opinion „Fünf“ ist he best album of Rotor so far and Rotor claim a place between the definite institutions of German Heavy-Rock.
5. Sun & Sail Club – The Great White Dope
The supergroup of Bob Balch, Scott Reeder (Fu Manchu) and the other Scott Reeder (Kyuss, The Obsessed) put aside the polarizing vocoder and hired another rock legend for their second outing – Tony „Adolescent“ Cadena. The 27-minute long result sounds like you were playing a Fu Manchu record on 45RPM, instead of 33RPM. Dashed off vocals meet constantly changing, incredibly energetic riffs; Punk-Rock meets technical precision. Headbanging is inevitable.
Other highlights of 2015
- Clutch – Psychic Warfare
- Wino & Conny Ochs – Freedom Conspiracy
- Paradise Lost – The Plague Within
- My Sleeping Karma – Moksha
- The Machine – Offblast
- Luna Sol – Blood Moon
- You Know Who – s/t
- Demon Head – Ride The Wilderness
- Creature With The Atom Brain – Night of the Hunter
Ruth’s Top 5
1. Caspian – Dust and Disquiet
Beverly’s very own Post-Rock heroes are back. Finally. In fact Caspian never let pass more than three years between their albums, nevertheless each publication feels like the deep breath before the big jump. And so is Dust & Disquiet – an album full of cool beauty, warm melodies and icy galaxies. The Massachusetts sextet with the more than justified reputation as the best live band of its time neither stagnant nor abandoned after the sudden death of bassist Chris Friedrich in 2013. Tireless touring and a wide-opened mind always helped the band to a great sound spectra and to experiment with classical instruments and even small vocal parts, which isn’t very typical for Post Rock. Especially the flawless production makes the three guitars attain power, persuade one to bow to the unstoppable Caspian, crying and laughing, feasting and dreaming. And who ever thought that Waking Season was the band’s sonic peak dwells in large error.
2. Elder – Lore
2015 definitely was the most successful year so far for the US-Trio. When Elder came out of nowhere with their second album Dead Roots Stirring back in 2011 and dashed all across the big pond from the East Coast, we’ve been already aware of their instrumental ingenuity and affinity for complex song structures. Lore offers virtuosic Psychedelic and Stoner Rock elements of its predecessor and mixes them with lively Metal riffing and usual crafty song arrangements. Singer and guitarist Nick DiSalvo is the great prodigy of the contemporary underground era with groundbreaking talent and charisma who – along with his bandmates – knows how to musically and conceptually think outside the box – Lore is not only exciting, creative and wonderfully inspired, it challenges the listener and forces the listener out of his comfort zone. Virtuosity and long jams are no vacuous continuous loop but offer an even more progressive intricacy and brilliant songwriting.
3. Weedeater – Goliathan
“I really hate your face. I hate the things you do. I know you do not like me. I’m gonna bury you…” What a way to start a new Weedeater album – honest, authentic, screw it. For almost 20 years they pack ugliness and fuck-you attitude in music and spit whiskey and beer smelly jelly on it. Together with Corrosion of Conformity and Buzzoven, Weedeater form a cacophony-loving and rotten Ménage à trois – the bad boys of the already devilish US- Sludge Metal. Goliathan is their fifth album – atonal, mixed with fetid breath and crooked teeth, yet lovable than ever. Bass-Monster Dave „Dixie“ Collins is worshiped as Jesus of Sludge-underground alongside Matt Pike, one would like to spend one or two tequilas at the bar and bring buddy-like sympathy. The unmistakable, heavy southern sound that is now and then refined with banjo and campfire atmo and Dixie’s classically hoarse organ destroy Goliathans filthiness and form a powerful and wholesome album.
4. High On Fire – Luminiferous
Speaking of Matt Pike, he and his band High on Fire also published something new: Luminiferous. What a dignified and adequate name for another doomy sludge monster that greedily devoured the musical year. After Pike tore down international festivals and concert halls with his other companions in Sleep and stuffed some greedy Doom-affine mouths, he has finally resurrected High on Fire. Well, what can one say about Luminiferous? It’s brutal, heavy, virtuosic, enriched with insane Motörhead dynamics and a welcome alternation from whispering-soft Blues Rock and at times lengthy Stoner Rock, the music scene visit year after year. Especially the soaring Carcosa, the Hardcore Metal roll Slave the Hive, whose influence is on the cap of producer Kurt Ballou (Converge) as well as the melancholic / whispering The Cave – Luminiferous makes one of the strongest outputs of the year!
5. Baroness – Purple
Out of the eponymous color table Baroness have chosen Purple this time. The color of magic, alchemy and penance. Or because it simply looks great when John Baizley puts guitar and vocals aside and gets back to his fabulous artwork. Back in 2012, the double album Yellow / Green split opinions and made big murmur especially among the fan base, as it wasn’t sure whether Baroness are quite addicted to soft Sludge-Pop. Another innovative band that you’ve lost in the great river. On Purple it is similar and yet different. The wobbly steps toward less Prog and more straightforwardness continue adamantly in Purple only that the uncertainty turns to bold self-confidence. After their serious tour bus accident in 2012, Baroness act entirely free from doubt and fear, reanimated and stronger than ever. Purple definitely reflects that. Welcome back!
Other highlights 2015
- With The Dead – s/t
- Kadavar – Berlin
- Puscifer – Money Shot
- KEN Mode – Success