Kevin Morby – City Music

kevin_morby_city music_front_coverClose your eyes. Imagine being on your way to work, standing in a ram-packed train… oh right I forgot you don’t need your imagination for that. It’s part of your daily routine. Although you would be wise to close your eyes every now and then and listen to Kevin Morby who made some nice music to commute by.    Continue reading

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Sounds from the Dark Side top albums of 2017 (until now)

the_dark_side_of_the_moon toplist 2014

Time flies when you’re having fun so let’s saw 2017 into half…

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Amy Macdonald – Under Stars

The year started out with what might be Amy Macdonald’s best and most mature album so far. Under Stars shows the Scottish singer/songwriter has all grown up and is relevant far beyond This Is The Life. (RP – SftDS review).


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Ryan Adams – Prisoner

Prisoner was an unexpectedly good album fueled by Adams’ divorce from singer Mandy Moore. The album has a nice pace and flows along very naturally. Don’t worry about us Ryan, we still love you (WRM).
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Avatarium – Hurricanes and Halos

With Hurricanes and Halos, Avatarium moves further away still from Leif Edling’s Candlemass-infused doom roots and sounds tighter and more convinced than ever (RP). ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Necks – Unfold

Balancing on the verges of jazz, avant-garde rock and classical The Necks take you down a very deep rabbit hole. Unfold is a perfect album to get lost in, and only ends when you feel that the end is there. (WRM – SftDS review).
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Ex Deo – The Immortal Wars

Early this year Ex Deo returned to the fray to deliver a concept album about the exploits of Hannibal. Not the one from The A-Team or the beloved cannibal, but the Elephant Man. Or something. An unbelievably tight death metal record straight out of Ancient Rome. (RP – SftDS review).  


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Scott H. Biram – The Bad Testament

The Bad Testament is a songbook made of a lifetime of bad decisions. Outlaw blues and brutally honest lyrics FTW, so you better believe it Roger Waters! (WRM – SftDS review).
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Roger Waters – Is This The Life We Really Want?

I’ve no idea if this is the life I really want, but Roger Waters’ new album has been a long time in the making and does not disappoint yet. A very strong contender to top the list at the end of this year. (RP – SftDS review).


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Thundercat – Drunk

Goofy R&B fusion that comes in pints. Thats enough reason to get one right? It’s nice enough to put on as background music but is far more enjoyable when you’re able to understand Bruner’s honesty and heartache as dark humor (WRM – SftDS review).
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Deep Purple – Infinite

Deep Purple is saying goodbye with a presumably last tour and album, and there are far worse ways to close off a career than with an album as strong as Infinite. A fine classic rock album and one of the better ones from latter day Purple (RP – SftDS review). 
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Arca – Arca

Arca’s search for some form of identity is intriguing. At times it is bombastic but it also comes to a standstill at the right moments.  It’s punishing, yet beautiful. (WRM – SftDS review).

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That’s it for now boys and girls. Be sure to check in every now and then and enjoy your summer holidays.

Wander Meulemans & Ralph Plug – 300617

Further surfing:

W’s Sounds from the Dark Side on Spotify

Sounds from the Dark Side top albums of 2016 (until now)

the_dark_side_of_the_moon toplist 2014

As you might have guessed last solstice was reason enough for us to draw up a list with our best albums of 2016 until this day. Here goes!

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hinds-leave me alone_frontHinds – Leave Me Alone

Hinds delivers a stable fundament, a catchy upbeatness and a strong no-nonsense sentiment on their first studio album. A splendid achievement of a group of young friends who again prove that the future belongs to the young (WRM – SftDS review).


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Iron Savior - TitancraftIron Savior – Titancraft

After an excellent, old school comeback, German metal machine Iron Savior shows that lightning can indeed strike twice. An excellent power metal album, with a host of varied and pumping tunes (RP).
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Channel the Spirits - The Comet Is Coming_FRONTChannel the Spirits – The Comet Is Coming

Channel the Spirits breaks through the traditional jazz swing and brings very danceable jazz funk. The ensemble taps into the work of free jazz pioneers such John Coltrane, Pharoah Sanders and Sun Ra. Highly recommended (WRM). ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Blood Ceremony - Lord of MisruleBlood Ceremony – Lord of Misrule

Getting slightly less dark and more retro rocking with each new release, this American band is still a standout in the barrage of retro bands kicking about at the moment. Less heavy, but a little more mature than before (RP).
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The Heliocentrics - From The Deep FrontThe Heliocentrics – From The Deep

Finally The Heliocentrics definitely found their niche by bringing together all experience they have gathered around them in recent years. From The Deep is raw and conceptually challenging but moreover. It’s a piece of work to turn inside out over and over again (WRM – SftDS review).  


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Rotting-Christ-Rituals-2016-300x300Rotting Christ – Rituals

The brothers Tolis return with another collection of their own particular brand of ethnic-upped black-ish metal. Which is something you’d not read on the back of the box very soon. Ethnic-upped probably isn’t even a thing. Still, a great album (RP – SftDS review).
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Jameszoo - Fool_FRONTJameszoo – Fool

Dutch musician Jameszoo combines Hip hop, jazz, dubstep, R&B and Brazilian music and also is inspired by the medieval painter Hieronymus Bosch. Jameszoo himself calls his debut album Fool a collection of “naive, computer jazz”. I fully agree, so I pitty the fool who doesn’t pick up on this album soon… (WRM – SftDS review).


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fleshgod-apocalypse-kingFleshgod Apocalypse – King

King is the culmination of years of work for this Italian band, finally marrying classical music and black metal like a Rhapsody of Fire steroids. A triumph for Fleshgod Apocalypse, and an album to keep coming back to (RP).
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thao & the-get-down-stay-down - a man alive_FRONTThao & The Get Down Stay Down – A Man Alive

A Man Alive is an adventurous album and offers listeners a record that is simply full of plain old fun and at the same time is interesting enough to keep playing throughout 2016. Outstanding job Thao (WRM – SftDS review)!  
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David Bowie - BlackstarDavid Bowie – Blackstar

Almost half a year in, Blackstar is still the most intruiging, mysterious and downright fascinating record out there. Bowie’s last album is a masterpiece of jazz fusion and its dark as night itself, both musically as well as lyrically. Unsettling and brilliant (RP – SftDS review).

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Indeed, jazz fusion, free jazz and jazz funk are gaining terrain. How about that!? Perhaps it has something to do with age, who knows. Anyway, have a nice summer and see you on the other side. 

Ralph Plug & Wander Meulemans – 290616

Further surfing:

W’s Sounds from the Dark Side on Spotify

Avantasia – Ghostlights

Ghostlights_by_AvantasiaSometimes I get the feeling that Tobias Sammet just doesn’t care much for Edguy anymore. Whilst the last few albums were okay at best, he seems to save his best material for Avantasia these days. And again, Edguy’s last album pales to 2016’s Ghostlights. Continue reading

Gloryhammer – Space 1992: Rise of the Chaos Wizards

Gloryhammer_-_Space_1992If you would have told me that one of my favourite albums of the year would be a power metal album by what’s essentially a joke band, I would have scoffed at you. As it stands, however, Space 1992: Rise of the Chaos Wizards is just that: one of the best power metal albums of the year. And yes, I know I’m late to the party. Continue reading