[Live Review] Marillion – Christmas Tour 2014, TivoliVredenburg Utrecht

va_marillion-christmasAh, 1988, it was the year the first internet virus showed up on our screens, the first exoplanet was discovered, the United Nations stated it would wipe out polio and a lot of forgettable Hollywood stars were born. Indeed, it was a very good year. Sadly 1988 was also the year leadsinger Fish, left the progressive rock band Marillion due to managerial issues. At the time Fish was a larger-than-life icon and the hole he left seemed difficult to fill up. However Steve Hogarth, who was appointed to be his successor, managed to start a new successful era with Marillion. On Monday, the band visited the sold out TivoliVredenburg as part of their 2014 Christmas Tour, Sounds from the Darkside mingled with a merry crowd and reports. Continue reading

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Sounds from the Dark Side top albums of 2014 (until now)

the_dark_side_of_the_moon toplist 2014

Hey y’all, summer solstice lies behind us so it’s time to saw the year in half. These are our top albums of 2014 until now and in no apparent order. Metal, Latin, Hip Hop-Jazz, Western funeral march music… we’ve got it all! Continue reading

Album Year List (2013)

The year is almost over, so it’s time to draw up the musical balance. We probably missed out on one or two nice albums in the proceedings of this year, so there is all the more reason to keep watch in 2014. Before doing that, let us close 2013 with two proper year lists.

Wander’s Eclectic Top Ten List of 2013:

As far as I’m concerned this year brought us a more than a few solid releases. Especially artists that have been with us for quite some time now were still able to amaze. Some of those truly returned to form, although mostly upheld their high standards. Those of you who dared to look a bit further also found that there was room for some refreshing innovation that was mainly inspired by non-Western traditions. This potential could be endless for its based on something very simple, playfulness. To be honest I’m pretty pleased 2013 showed me the oldies still got it and some emerging bands truly surpassed my expectations.

10. Matt Elliott – Only Myocardial Infarction Can Break Your Heart (SftDS review)
9. Goldfrapp – Tales Of Us (SftDS review)
8. Boards of Canada – Tomorrow’s Harvest
7. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Push The Sky Away (SftDS review)
6. Lola Montez – Kolaveri Di (SftDS review)
5. Kurt Vile – Wakin On A Pretty Daze
4. Meridian Brothers – Devoción (Works 2005 – 2011) (SftDS review)

bill-callahan-dream-river-album3. Bill Callahan – Dream River (SftDS review)
There’s no denying it, Bill Callahan just keeps on making the one beautiful song after the other. So I suggest you’ll wait until the day is about to end, pour yourself a nightcap and surrender yourself to Callahan’s short poems. 

Deerhunter-Monomania 300x3002. Deerhunter – Monomania
I don’t have any excuse for not reviewing Deerhunter this year. So here is my opinion in a nutshell: Monomania is absolutely f$#k@*g splendid! If you ask me this is by far, the best indie-rock album of 2013. Got that?

The Heliocentrics - 13 Degrees of Reality_cover1. The Heliocentrics – 13 Degrees of Reality (SftDS review)
13 Degrees of Reality is built upon a diversity of sounds coming from all corners of the world.  The Heliocentrics successfully blend this diversity into something new and progressive. Don’t be afraid to pick up this one at your local record store if in need of some forshadowing tension.

Concerts of 2013:
– Ibrahim Maalouf – North Sea Jazz Festival. Ahoy Rotterdam 13-7-2013 (SftDS review)
– Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds – HMH. Amsterdam 4-11-2013 (SftDS review)
– Matt Elliott – Le Guess Who? Leeuwenbergh Utrecht 1-12-2013

Anticipated for 2014:
– Beck – Morning Phase – Expected 14-2-2014
– Timber Timbre – Hot Dreams  –  Expected 1-4-2014
– Modest Mouse – TBD

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Ralph’s Unholy List of Infernal Racket of 2013:

There have been worse musical years, especially when you are into more the old-fashioned sounding heavy metal of yesteryear. The retro virus is apparently still spreading and the swampy, seventies vibe still roams through the metallic land. There have been a number of surprises for me this year and at least one more than convincing comeback, and drawing up a list of ten best (or favourite) albums felt like a herculean effort. So without further ado, here’s my top ten list of 2013:

10. Jex Thoth – Blood Moon Rise
9. Rotting Christ – Κατά Τον Δαίμονα Εαυτού (SftDS review)
8. Chthonic – Bú-Tik (SftDS review)
7. Summoning – Old Mornings Dawn (SftDS review)
6. Avatarium – Avatarium
5. Kvelertak – Meir (SftDS review)
4. Ghost – Infestissumam (SftDS review)

David Bowie - The Next Day3. Bowie, David – The Next Day (SftDS review)
Bowie’s first album in ten years totally came out of left field, but managed to both convince and surprise. A perfect marriage between the man’s older and newer material, The Next Day is up there with his best efforts.

Twilight of the Gods - Fire on the Mountain2. Twilight of the Gods – Fire on the Mountain (SftDS review)
No one expected this Bathory cover band to come out with their own material, but Fire on the Mountain is a real scorcher, and not to be missed by fans of traditional and epic heavy metal.

Atlantean Kodex - The White Goddess

1. Atlantean Kodex – The White Goddess (SftDS review)
Really putting the ‘e’ in ‘epic’, the German Atlantean Kodex pulls no punches on their terrific sophomore album. The White Goddess is one of those rare albums that is way ahead of the competition, and is destined to become an all-time classic metal album in the years to come.

Concerts of 2013:
– Rush – Ziggo Dome Amsterdam, 2-6-2013
– Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band – Goffertpark Nijmegen, 22-6-2013 (SftDS review)
– Roger Waters – Gelredome Arnhem, 18-7-2013 (SftDS review)

Anticipated for 2014:
– Iced Earth – Plagues of Babylon – Expected 1-6-2014
– Alcest – Shelter – Expected 17-1-2014
– Iron Savior – Rise of the Hero – Expected 28-2-2014

That’s it for now so see you next year. Have a nice one, and oh,… ‘keep on trucking’.

[Live Review] Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds – Heineken Music Hall, Amsterdam (4-11-2013)

NC&BS_official2Its been only a few months since the gig at the Netherlands’ biggest pop festival, A Campingflight to Lowlands, and from what we’ve heard from a few youngsters, Cave rocked the audience’s the socks off! Now for us ‘younger elderly’ Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds scheduled a new concert in Amsterdam’s Heineken Music Hall (HMH) halfway through November. Alas this was sold out in an instant. Luck has it Cave found another free date in his busy touring schedule, resulting in an extra (but far from sold-out) Amsterdam concert. Sounds from the Dark Side couldn’t resist the temptation and made the long and arduous journey to the sprawling edges of Holland’s capital.
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Sounds from the Dark Side top albums of 2013 (until now)

Hi folks, we’re almost halfway through 2013 and that’s why is time to give you a short overview of our favorite albums to this day. Continue reading