Tag Archive Journey

Farewell, 2012: Alkahest’s Top 15 Albums Of 2012


So it’s Wednesday at 3:43 AM the week these year-end retrospective lists are being published and I’m scrambling to edit my fellow writers’ contributions when I’ve barely even started mine. To be honest it hasn’t even quite settled in that 2012 is just about over. As I’m writing this, there’s about a week and a half left of the year, and it puzzles me. It feels like just a couple of months ago that I was doing this exact same thing for 2011, only this time I seem to be much busier and everything looks different. The site, wordpress, and even my staff group have all changed.

We’ve picked up a number of fresh faces this year that you’ve already seen these past few days, but you may have also noticed that a couple of people from last year are no longer with us. A lot of people have come and gone over these past three and a half years that I’ve been doing this Heavy Blog thing, and most of them sort of float around and hang out when they can. The most important ones that come to mind right now are Dan (Dormition) and Chris (Disinformasiya), both of whom were very instrumental and valuable in the growth of this site, and it was sad to see them part ways with us. Without them (Chris in particular), I might have not kept this thing going this far. I love both of those guys dearly, and you can keep up with them at The Monolith, which you should bookmark if you haven’t already. Ya jerk.

Like I’ve said, this year has been busy. I don’t talk about my personal life much here despite the fact that it’s my blog, but what better time to get all personal than a year-end retrospective? As you may have noticed, I’ve been a bit more of a hands-off editor and the scheduling of posts have been a bit less rigid and frequent than they used to be. I’m at the tail end of my college career and I’m currently in and out of internships which have kept me busy and often away from Heavy Blog. Between classes, internships, my “actual” job, and this website, my hands are pretty full. You (and I, for sure) can thank Evan (Juular) for his help with editing since Chris’ departure as well as Damien, Noyan, Gunnar (DeusExMachina), Cody (Tentaclesworth), Spencer (Inhumed), Anthony (Alucard), Greg (Red Bruschetta), Atif (Dr. Killjoy), David (Riptide), Ridge (Deadite), Colin (Momento Mori), and Geoff (Denisovich) for sticking with me and making sure there’s enough content each week and that this site keeps going strong. Also a strong word up to Ben Robson who took over Heavy Blog recently and decided to stick around with us behind the scenes and Chris Collins, our resident photographer. These guys are awesome, and they manage to put a smile on my face every single day.

2013 promises to be even busier with my next internship, impending graduation, and career, but hopefully that doesn’t stop this site from growing and providing daily content that helps to promote and further our favorite genre of music. Thank all of you for sticking with us!

So with all these feels out of the way, here’s what most of you care about, my albums of the year:

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Anthrax Set To Release 70s Cover EP This September

Anthrax are one of my favorite bands, and while they had a few missteps the past decade, their last album Worship Music was one of the best albums to come out last year. So, to celebrate its one year anniversary, Anthrax recorded a covers EP paying tribute to their favorite artists of the 70s, including the likes of of Rush and Journey. I’m really stoked, because all their covers have been pretty damn good (‘Bring The Noise,’ anyone?), and are often staples of their live show. Be on the lookout!

[via Revolver]


The Omega Experiment – The Omega Experiment

The Omega Experiment

The Omega Experiment

01. Gift
02. Stimulus
03. Motion
04. Tranquility
05. Furor
06. Bliss
07. Karma
08. Terminus
09. Paramount


Every now and then I come across a band so great that I can’t help but wonder why any label would pass on the opportunity to have the act a part of their roster. In the case of The Omega Experiment, I have never before been so absolutely baffled. I don’t know what’s more shocking; the fact that The Omega Experiment’s self titled debut album wasn’t picked up by a label or that—for a debut album produced and released completely DIY—the quality of every aspect of this release is so top-shelf. Do not take it lightly when I say that The Omega Experiment is the best independent progressive metal album I’ve heard in recent memory.

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Last Chance To Reason Developing Concept Record/Video Game

Last Chance To Reason are a Progressive Metal band from Augusta Maine and to say that they are ambitious and creative is a bit of an understatement. They worked with producer Jamie King (Between The Buried And Me, The Human Abstract, For Today) to record their second full-length album which they are calling Level 2, and as if that wasn’t enough, they are also simultaneously developing a video game with the help of indie video game designer Tom Vine. Both the album and the game will share the same name and concept with each other and from what I have seen/heard this multifaceted project is something worth keeping tabs on.

We know that this isn’t the first time that a band has released a video game, (Iron Maiden, Journey) but we can still expect a unique experience from LCTR’s Level 2. You can find two of their songs from Level 2, “Temp Files'” and “Upload Complete” on their myspace page and I am very impressed with both of them. The music makes me think of Periphery or Speak Of The Devil, both of which are very good things. Here is an excerpt from their myspace page so you can get a feel for what LCTR are about:

“Level 2 is a new take on both the concept album and the videogame. It is a melding of both arts into a unified experience. In Level 2 you will battle through fully interactive interpretations of Last Chance to Reason’s futuristic progressive metal. The game/album’s story unfolds through thematic riffs, stirring vocal hooks and progressive virtuosity while the player blasts his way through viscous gameplay inspired by classics such as R-Type, Contra, and Super Metroid. Level 2, a collaboration between LCTR and indie game developer Tom Vine is slated for release in 2010”

I consider Super Metroid to be one of the best video games of all time so it excites me that they cite the game as an inspiration. They also have a pretty sweet teaser video for the album/game:

Pretty awesome stuff. Another thing I like about the band is that on their youtube channel, they like to upload videos explaining sections of their songs, and this proves to be very interesting due to the complex and intricate nature of their music. They also have a blog that they update frequently following the development of the project so that is nice.

Level 2 is set to be released sometime in 2010.