Harley's Top 11 of '12

This is my last post for TDM and I have to say I have enjoyed blogging here.  Many thanks to Rob for taking me on and to Scott for his support through the year.  Next year I will be contributing to We Love Metal, rather than starting my own blog at this point.  “Real life” just has too much going on, from finishing up my master’s degree, a 10 week intensive military school, another 2 week National Security course, helping run a photography business, and a move next summer to who-knows-where with a new job to learn.

I have been absent lately from here due to demanding classes in school, last minute trips for work, and spending 3 weeks in October and November supporting the response to Hurricane Sandy in NY & NJ.  Plus a quick vacation in October.  It’s been a little crazy and Metal blogging has taken a back seat.

All that said, the reason for this post is to share with you my top albums for 2012, as well as my song and show of the year.  It was really a hit or miss year, with few hits I think.  It is impossible to predict if any of these will be long-term solid albums, ones I go back to years from now and stand the test of time, but there may be a handful of candidates.  My list consists entirely of veteran bands, averaging over 8 full length album releases over their careers, so no one-hit wonders here.

Some albums that were close, but didn’t quite make it to my list are Varg’s Guten Tag, Kreator’s Phantom Antichrist, Sabaton’s Carolus Rex, At Vance’s Facing Your Enemy, Rush’s Clockwork Angels, and Diablo Swing Orchestra’s Pandora’s Pinata.  Here we go…..

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Pit of Hell: Manala North American Tour, Gramercy Theater, NYC

 I happened to be going to New Jersey for my job when I found out about a couple of concerts at the Gramercy Theater in Manhattan while I was going to be there.  I had a choice to make – Korpiklaani or Devin Townsend.  There wasn’t any way I could make it to both.  I obviously chose the Forest Clan on their Manala North American Tour, as I had never seen them before, while I have seen Townsend live (truly an entertaining show).  It really was a tough decision, as if you have seen Devin Townsend, you know that he is a complete madman on stage and a first class entertainer.  For this show I was even able to secure a photo pass, although there were some issues that prevented me from getting the shots I wanted.  Continue reading

Devil’s Review: Korpiklaani – Manala

The Forest Clan are back with album number 362 (OK, it’s really #8 in 10years – quite prolific nowadays).  These guys crank out their version of Finnish Folk Metal on a very regular basis and are one of those groups (much like the band in my last review) that you pretty much know what you are going to get going in.  With Manala (on Nuclear Blast), Korpiklaani has taken a slightly different path this time.

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Devil's Review: Korpiklaani – Manala

The Forest Clan are back with album number 362 (OK, it’s really #8 in 10years – quite prolific nowadays).  These guys crank out their version of Finnish Folk Metal on a very regular basis and are one of those groups (much like the band in my last review) that you pretty much know what you are going to get going in.  With Manala (on Nuclear Blast), Korpiklaani has taken a slightly different path this time.

Continue reading