Lists, lists, of lists. Another year gone and once again it was a great one for tunes.
There certainly was a dearth of great tunes created this year. Ok so 2013 is in the rearview mirror. Much like 2012, 2013 was blessed with lots of fantastic new music releases. So here in reverse order are Count Robot’s favorite 3.
#3 Black Sabbath: 13
Wow! Doom filled riffs, crunching bass, and Stephen King worthy lyrics. Sabbath and Rick Rubin brought it all. Robot ghosts haunt and rock the graveyard with loners and acoustic guitars. A friend said he thought this is their best album and dude I agree. I may have an army of torch wielding villagers chasing me after this but they have never sounded so good, ever. Blues fueled dirge metal prog sung straight and carried by an undead figure. Awesome. It only took one listen to make the top 3. Is God dead? Only if God doesn’t own this record. I’ve heard the deluxe edition is even better. Must seek it out.
#2 Nik Turner: Space Gypsy
This is most likely Nik’s best solo CD… ok it is his best solo CD. This album totally caught me off guard. When I heard Mr. Turner had a new CD coming out I just assumed it would be a decent release I didn’t expect the jaw-dropping slab of exploding space rock that crashed through my speakers. There’s no fill. No drone ambient goes nowhere pre-fab wanking with space knobs. This is a sonic attack on the mind of space rockers. This is an explosive statement of what can be done with space rock and what it should blast off in search of. Moogs, mellotrons, sax, flute, and time crypts in the eternity of a time wind. Nik is blowing his wizard horn with full strength and intergalactic over drive. Dig his histrionically delivered paranoia laced vocal take on Something’s Not Right. Amazingly it’s a bonus track but it’s a top-notch tune.
#1 Steven Wilson: The Raven that Refused to Sing
This CD landed in January and right then it had the top spot. Kept waiting to see if some release could dethrone it but there was just nothing as sonically, cinematically, and artistically powerful.
This is a unique piece of work in so many ways. It’s not just a collection of tunes, it’s a volume of supernatural stories transformed into songs.
Luminol tells a ghost story in an amazing 70’s prog jam jazz explosion. This song blasts the doors off and its deft trickery and harmonies are neck snapping. This song says yes to yes and crowns the king of crimson.
The Watchmaker breathes Poe moods and the morose feeling of a failed life all in a spiraling melody.
Everything about this cries its greatness. Not a weak song or poorly played note exists here. The title track, The Raven that Refused to Sing, captures, joy, fear, love and death in a stirring majestic sweep of strings and grandeur.
Scrape my jaw up off the floor please.
Looking forward to more musical greatness in 2014. I hear Trance to the Sun will have an all-new album out…