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Old 11-25-2020, 04:21 PM   #1401
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'Manifest' by Amaranthe. I've put off this one for whatever stupid reason. Absolutely fell in love with them after hearing "Drop Dead Cynical" a few years back and they were actually the first concert I ever attended. This album is going to have to get a 6 out of 10, though. It feels like too much of more of the same from the last go around with "Helix". Niles is a fine replacement but I miss Jake as time goes on. Elize is still the goddess that she is and I don't foresee that changing anytime soon.

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Old 11-26-2020, 03:55 PM   #1402
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Touche Amore - Lament 6.8/10

It doesn't touch their previous album, Stage 4, which was a great record with a real emotional punch (lead singer coming to terms with the death of his Mum from cancer), and it is not as good as Survived By either. Perhaps I'm just growing out of the band.

Ulrika Boden - Valje a Vrake 8/10

An early solo album from one of the vocalists of the Swedish folk group, Ranarim, which is also very much in the Scandinavian folk vein. I love her voice.
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Old 11-27-2020, 10:45 AM   #1403
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Pink Elephant by Stand Atlantic: 6/10

I was actually supposed to see these guys in the summer. I barely discovered them late last year and they seemed alright. This album is the usual standard pop-punk stuff in the same vein as New Found Flory with two standout songs: "Drink to Drown", a nice little piano ballad, and "Wavelength", which has some energy and neat use of vocal editing that I'm not usually a fan of but it's fine here. I can't call these guys one of my favorites but who knows in the future. I'm a sucker for women like Bonnie Fraser.
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Old 11-28-2020, 02:53 AM   #1404
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Old 12-09-2020, 05:42 AM   #1405
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Enkel - We Are Enkel 8/10
The second album by the all female Finnish folk group, and it feels a bit more accessible, but no less adventurous, than their first record. It is definitely on par with their first album. If you like folk music, check them out.

Men at Work - Cargo 8/10
A quality 80s pop album; the song Overkill is the standout track, but there are no weak tracks on the record.

Fredrik Thordendal's Special Defects - Sol Niger Within 7.5/10
A solo album from one of Meshuggah's guitarists, and sounds like a mixture of the aforementioned band with a bit of Dream Theater and other prog influences; if you like Meshuggah, you'll like this record.
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Old 12-18-2020, 06:27 AM   #1406
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Cellar Darling - The Spell 7/10

Female-fronted rock band that sounds musically like Alter Bridge (minus the constant guitar solo wankery) with a bit of folk (a hurdy gurdy is one of the main instruments) and prog mixed in. I like the music and the vocal performance, but the lyrics are a bit iffy at times, which stops me from giving the album a higher mark.

Pauliina Syrjälä - Lunkula 8/10

Instrumental album composed of just a Saarijärvi kantele; the artist delivers on making a solo instrumental record tuneful while also experimenting with the different sounds that can be gotten out of the instrument. The record is only around 40 mins long, so it doesn't out stay its welcome, which can sometimes be a problem with solo instrumental albums.
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Old 12-29-2020, 06:35 AM   #1407
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Korpiklaani - Kulkija 7/10

Finnish folk-metal; I don't have any of their other albums to compare it against, but apparently this is their "mature" album; it is definitely less punky than some of their other stuff I've heard. I enjoyed it, but I don't know if I'd buy another one of their albums.

Minnie Riperton - Adventures in Paradise 7.7/10

Mellow but sexy; Riperton has a lovely voice.
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Old 01-02-2021, 12:03 AM   #1408
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Very patriotic 5/7
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Old 01-09-2021, 05:16 PM   #1409
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Loituma - Into the Moonlight 7.5/10

Finnish folk music.

Arja Kastinen - The Last Gathering 8/10

A record of solo kantele music; you would be surprised at the variety of sounds she gets out of the different kanteles she uses, which keeps the album interesting throughout.
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Old 01-21-2021, 07:14 AM   #1410
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Pauanne - Pauanne 7.5/10

A mixture of Finnish folk music and poppy electronica, with added field recordings and a bit of artiness on top.

Lafayette Afro Rock Band - Soul Makossa 7/10

Funk-Jazz; reminded me somewhat of Santana, minus the searing hot solos and the Latin rhythms.
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Old 02-05-2021, 05:21 AM   #1411
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Wardruna - Kvitravn 8.5/10

They aren't really doing anything different to what was present on their Runaljod trilogy, but it is so good and I think their best album yet.

Nothing - The Great Dismal 8/10

I don't usually pay much attention to Mitch's music suggestions, but this is a very enjoyable album to listen to. A mixture of My Bloody Valentine and Failure/Autolux and some other influences. Not original, but worth a listen.

Emerson, Lake and Palmer - Emerson, Lake and Palmer 8/10

Keys-led jazz-prog with some tasty drumming; if you like prog, you'll like this record.
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Old 02-19-2021, 06:30 AM   #1412
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Emmanuelle Parrenin - Maison Rose 8.5/10

What starts off as a regular French folk album slowly morphs into something a bit weirder and artier; it also seems rather timeless to me, as you wouldn't suspect the album was recorded in the mid 1975.

Pallbearer - Heartless 7.5/10

Hard rock/metal with long song structures; not technical enough to fall under prog or any of the other arty forms of metal.

Mastodon - Leviathan 7.5/10

I'm not sure why I've stayed away from this album for the past 15 years or so, but I enjoyed it. The only problem is that the most memorable thing about the record is the drumming; without that particular drummer, the score would probably be less.
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Old 03-04-2021, 05:50 PM   #1413
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The Indestructible Beat of Soweto - Volume One 7.5/10

The album that inspired Paul Simon's Graceland record.

Commodores - Movin' On 7.5/10

A solid RnB record.

Martti Pokela, Eeva-Leena Sariola and Matti Kontio - The Tradition of Kantele, Vol. 1 7.5/10
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Old 03-19-2021, 08:18 AM   #1414
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Silversun Pickups - Carnavas 8/10

I really enjoyed this alt rock album; they seem to get compared to Smashing Pumpkins, though they lack Billy Corgen's grandiosity.

Prince - Dirty Mind 8/10

Prince is on fine perverted form, ready to rock and funk you out in equal measures.
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Old 03-23-2021, 12:07 AM   #1415
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Originally Posted by El Vaquero de Infierno View Post
Enkel - We Are Enkel 8/10
The second album by the all female Finnish folk group, and it feels a bit more accessible, but no less adventurous, than their first record. It is definitely on par with their first album. If you like folk music, check them out.

Men at Work - Cargo 8/10
A quality 80s pop album; the song Overkill is the standout track, but there are no weak tracks on the record.

Fredrik Thordendal's Special Defects - Sol Niger Within 7.5/10
A solo album from one of Meshuggah's guitarists, and sounds like a mixture of the aforementioned band with a bit of Dream Theater and other prog influences; if you like Meshuggah, you'll like this record.
Cracking tune. Thanks for reminding me about it.
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Old 04-01-2021, 08:37 AM   #1416
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Lionel Richie - Can't Slow Down 8/10

I know, I know; some fine 80s pop, though.

Duo Selina - Duo Selina 7/10

Kantele music.
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Old 04-15-2021, 06:51 AM   #1417
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Varttina - Seleniko 8/10

Finnish folk music; a strong early album, before they started to add more pop elements to their sound; a good place to start, if you are brave enough to venture into nordic folk music.

Ad Nauseam - Imperative Imperceptible Impulse 7/10

Think Gorguts, with lengthier songs; a decent record, but nothing that touches the aforementioned band.
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Old 05-06-2021, 08:11 PM   #1418
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King Crimson - Starless and Bible Black 8/10

I don't know why I put-off buying this album for so long; it is tasty. It may be the best of John Wetton-era records (Lark's Tongue in Aspic, and Red being the other two albums of that period).

Ulrika Boden - Korksangern 7/10

An album of Swedish folk hymns sung by one of the female vocalists of Ranarim. A pleasant and gentle listening experience (sometimes it reminded me of a Kate Rusby album), but if you are looking for something to challenge your ears or excite you, you best look elsewhere.
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Old 06-05-2021, 10:48 AM   #1419
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Les Zéoles - Sur Measure 8/10

Two ladies playing accordions (one a diatonic button accordion and the other a piano accordion), with the occasional piano and percussion for accompaniment. A very enjoyable record, and on par with their most recent record, Arborescences, which I listened to back in September.

Anja Kastinen - Emanuel 7.5/10

Kantele music.
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Old 07-05-2021, 09:19 AM   #1420
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Chris Thile - Laysongs 7/10

One man and his mandolin. I think this album is purely one for the fans; if you want to delve into the world of Chris Thile, check out one of his Punch Brothers records.

Astor Piazzolla - Tango Zero Hour 8.5/10

Tango music, but not light dance music; this is moody, sometimes dissonant material, which isn't for dancing to. If you like instrumental albums and want something different, check it out.

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Old 07-22-2021, 07:22 PM   #1421
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Hedningarna - Tra 8/10

Nordic folk music mixed with electronica and rock.

Pantha du Prince - Conference of Trees 7/10

Ambient music; I still need to listen to this album more, but it didn't grab me like the Hedningarna record.
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Old 08-20-2021, 10:34 AM   #1422
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Betty Davis - Betty Davis 8/10

The original nasty girl; very good.

Nanae Yoshimura - The Art of the Koto Vol 1: Works from the Edo Period 8.5/10

My first album of koto music; great stuff. I will be getting the other 3 volumes.

Sabine Meyer - Weber: Clarinet Concertos 1 & 2/Concertino in E flat/Clarinet Quintet 7.7/10

It took me awhile to get into it, but I finally started to enjoy the album; the lesser of the three albums I have listened to over the past month or so.
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Old 08-20-2021, 12:30 PM   #1423
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Re: the Koto




Yoshida Brothers are the shit




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Old 08-20-2021, 12:58 PM   #1424
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I will put one of their albums on my 'to buy' list.
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Old 08-27-2021, 01:34 PM   #1425
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Chvrches - Screen Violence: 7 out of 10.

It just dropped today so of course I'm all over it. This is a band I probably wouldn't have tackled under normal circumstances but they've grown on me. This time around is a bit above average but doesn't quite step things up. To be fair, Love Is Dead is going to be hard to top. It's an interesting choice to have Lauren basically handle all of the vocals in the lead as opposed to Martin being tagged in for a song or two. "He Said She Said" and "Nightmares" are probably the standouts here. Still enjoyable as they've got their style down and didn't really deviate into weird detours.
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Old 09-06-2021, 01:05 AM   #1426
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El Vaquero de Infierno View Post

A record of solo kantele music; you would be surprised at the variety of sounds she gets out of the different kanteles she uses, which keeps the album interesting throughout.
I bet you I wouldn't
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Old 09-06-2021, 01:06 AM   #1427
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Armin Van Buuren: A State of Trance Forever.

12/10
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Old 09-23-2021, 12:25 PM   #1428
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Korpiklaani - Noita 8.5/10

I really liked this album; far superior to the previous record that I bought from this band. If you like a bit of Dropkick Murphys, but want something a bit more metal (and Finnish!), give it a try.

Nanae Yoshimura - The Art of the Koto Vol 2 8.5/10

It maintains the high quality of the first volume.

Dieter Klocker and members of the Vlach Quartet Prague - Hoffmeister: Clarinet Quartets 8/10

If you like clarinet music, you can't go wrong with this record.

Members of the Berlin Philharmonic Octet - Brahms: The String Quintets 8.5/10

It took me awhile to warm to these works, but once I did, I enjoyed them a lot; not up there with his clarinet quintet, but strong compositions nonetheless.
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Old 09-23-2021, 12:26 PM   #1429
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I really strong month of music for me.
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Old 10-23-2021, 06:24 AM   #1430
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Ensemble Convivencia Strasbourg - Troubadoure 8/10

Lovely album of mediaeval troubadour music.

Hesperion XXI and Jordi Savall - Estampies & Dases Royales 8/10

Another splendid album of mediaeval dance music.

Clutch - Strange Cousins from the West 7/10

Clutch never deliver a poor album, but it is not their best.

Yoshida Brothers - Hishou Shamisen Dakeno Sekai Vol.1 7/10

Drave turned me on to these guys; solid stuff, but doesn't touch the Nanae Yoshimura albums I previously bought.
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Old 11-26-2021, 02:55 PM   #1431
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Billy Joel - 52nd Street 8.5/10

The production and arrangements are a little bit dated, but this record is as good a pop album as you are ever likely to hear.

Estampie - Songs of Women in the Middle Ages 8/10

Copenhagen Piano Quartet - Kuhlau: Piano Quartet in G Minor, Op. 108 8/10

Nanae Yoshimura - The Art of the Koto, Vol. 3: Works for Nijugen 7.5/10

Not as strong as the previous 2 volumes of koto music, but still worth getting.

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Old 11-26-2021, 03:16 PM   #1432
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Crowned in Frost by Frozen Crown: 7/10

Gonna use my 17,000th post on this. This is a band I've had on the backburner for a while. They're Italian. They do metal. Most importantly, they fucking rock. I love the guitars on this. There's not a lot to separate them from similar acts but I dig this style. I don't know if it's fair to put them in the same camp as something like Unleash the Archers. I'm going to try to dive into the rest of their catalog when I get the chance. This album gets a moderate thumbs up in the meantime.
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Old 11-28-2021, 12:59 PM   #1433
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The Fallen King also by Frozen Crown: 7/10

More or less the same as Crowned in Frost. I think I'm at the cusp of welcoming them into my fold.
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Old 11-29-2021, 02:01 PM   #1434
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Stuffed & Ready by Cherry Glazerr: 6/10

Saw these guys when they opened for Chvrches. They had Livvy Bennett as the bassist instead of Sami for this set; not sure what the deal was. Anyways, they were another group that I had on the backburner to check out as I thought they were pretty OK. This is the kind of thing that I would have been all over in high school. I'm more than likely going to go through the whole catalog for them, too. This is some of their recent work so I wonder how they evolved. It's like a grungy Metric.
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