I realized I have been making a lot of purchases and yet not everything makes its way on to the site. I figured I would do a wrap up each month of all my purchasing I have made even if they made it on the site during the month or even might make it on to the site down the road.
And this month started out with a bang! A brand new record store opened up in Charlotte, NC called Noble Records. They opened on October 5th which was a Saturday and because of that I got their bright and early. Not grand opening 10am early, but I got there before 11am. I had to take my daughter to her tutoring class at 10 and family comes first…then vinyl…sorry then God, then vinyl!! Okay, maybe more order is skewed, but you get it.
I found two album I have been wanting and I had to grab them as I don’t seem them that often and one was a first pressing (not the RAGE album).
I then found two more albums one I for some reason didn’t have in my collection as it is one of the most popular albums of the 70’s and the other is a 12″ Single from Stryper just in time for Christmas.
Shinedown was formed in Jacksonville, Florida back in 2001 and it only took two years to get a record deal and release their debut album ‘Leave a Whisper’. Their post-grunge, hard rock sound garnered them fast attention and they have since become one of the biggest acts in the business. Their music could be really heavy and it can be soft with a touching ballad, but whichever way you get it, it is going to be melodic and catchy as hell which has brought them great success.
Now, how did I get in to Shinedown. Believe it or not, it was Chris Daughtry from American Idol. I was watching the show and Chris came out and did a fantastic cover of “I Dare You” by Shinedown. At the time, I was not familiar with the band and as a result of him singing it, I went out and listened to the album and the rest is history. I have been a fan of Shinedown ever since.
They have 6 studio albums, one live album and numerous E.P.’s. We are only going to focus on the studio albums to keep it simple. So, why don’t we get started.
THE WORST – ‘THREAT TO SURVIVAL’ (2015):
Shinedown doesn’t really have a worst album, but one album has to be my least favorite and this one is it for me. I felt this one had too much filler and a little too soft overall when compared to the rest. Yes, you had some heavy songs, I only think they weren’t as strong as other albums. A little too soft. The back half of the album was weaker and it started to lose me until you get to the last song “Misfits” which was pretty awesome.
Welcome to the Top 20 Rock Songs of 2018. These songs are my favorite songs of the year and were not necessarily played on the radio or even shot up the charts. They just moved me in some way good or bad!
#20 – “Loading Zones” – Kurt Vile off the album ‘Bottle it In’: Kurt’s can be about the mundane and anything that troubles him in life. This is about the horrors of trying to park in the city. It has such a great little beat to it and some great guitar and such a simple subject that yet turns into something amazing. The video is great as well.
#19 – “Roll Me Under” – Stone Temple Pilots off the album ‘Stone Temple Pilots (2018)’: I know I did give the album the best review, but I liked this song. It had the old STP sound, but it was also Jeff Gutt at his best on the album. Such a heavy bass and guitar sound, it was just great.
2018 was another year with some great releases and way too many to get through them all so I am sure I missed a number of great albums and if you look around the web, there will be tons of Top Album lists you can get a pretty good idea of what you should check out in case you missed any of these.
This list will be my favorite “Rock” albums of the year. All other types of music will be for a later post. I am going to leave this one to my favorite genre. It is a broad genre, but these are the albums that I consider to be ROCK!!
Also note, these are MY FAVORITES!! These are not the most popular or trendy albums. These are the albums that I connected with during the year and I kept coming back to again and again. And without further adieu, here are the Top Rock Albums of 2018:
My #1 Album of the Year:
Reach – The Great Divine: A modern, yet melodic rock album that just grabs hold and won’t let go from beginning to end. A band I had never heard of prior to this album and I am now wondering where they have been my whole life. Just a fantastic album with no songs to skip or delete. Almost pure perfection. The first album I bought that was new in 2018 and still listen to it today. With songs like “The Great Divine”, “Nightmare” and “Into Tomorrow” you can see they have the goods. The production value was great, the music, the vocals, it was all solid and my favorite album of the year!! Give it a try (and check out my original review by clicking the album title).
Happy Friday and May the 4th Be With You!! Yes, I went there on Star Wars Day!! There aren’t a ton of releases but a few I am excited about. I will highlight those in Blue as usual. Go through and let me know what you like or what I might have missed. I hope you enjoy and have a great weekend.
Shinedown – Attention Attention – (Atlantic Recording): The main one I want to hear is the new Shinedown album. The song “Devil” was freaking awesome and I love the whole idea of loose concept album. It isn’t a full on concept album, but the songs will take you on a journey of a person who is starting in a very dark, ominous place and take you all the way through to the other side where this person is done battling his mind and his issues and coming out a changed person. Check out “Devil” and then get this album.
Mat Kearney – CRAZYTALK – (Tomorrow Music): Mat Kearney is one of the finer singer/songwriters out there and he never gets enough credit. He has some great pop sensibilities, but takes risk and tries new things. I don’t like to listen to his albums ahead of time, I like to be surprised and I hope this will bring many.
With Shinedown, when they release a song or an album you know what you are going to get. They have a sound and a style that works and they don’t stray far from that formula. With the new album coming on May 4th, ‘Attention, Attention’, Shinedown is trying to do just that…get your attention.
The album is basically a concept album The songs will take you on a journey of a person who is starting in a very dark, ominous place and take you all the way through to the other side where this person is done battling his mind and his issues and coming out a changed person. I love concept albums so I can’t wait to get ahold of this an take this journey.
The first single is “Devil”, which is the first song on this story through the mind. According to Brent Smith in an interview with Billboard, he states the following:
“‘DEVIL’ is about being afraid, ‘DEVIL’ is about being terrified of not only yourself, in some respects, but the world around you, and understanding that there are so many things and so many different situations and people and places and atmospheres and exposure that human beings are put in front of on a daily basis, [and] the world can be a really difficult place to navigate. So that’s where the story starts.”
Oh the Holidays! The end of the year. Christmas time. The time John is not supposed to buy any albums since it is the holidays and it is my birthday time period so no record purchases as people need to have something to give me as a gift. Well, that didn’t quite work this year.
I did set aside a list of albums people could buy for me for Christmas and/or my Birthday and I made sure that anything I picked up was not from that list. December turned out to be a treasure trove of purchases, gifts and free stuff. I definitely hit the jackpot with a crap load of albums to listen to and some day write about.
It all started mid-November when the Coke reward program was giving away $5 Amazon gift cards for every 10 bottle caps redeemed. Well, I had been collecting them at work as I do drink one Coke product everyday and on really stressful, busy days, maybe two. The $5 Amazon Gift cards were actually $10 because they allowed you to redeem it twice. After setting up a several more accounts with different email addresses, I was able to redeem $40 worth of caps (I would have done more, but I ran out of caps). What did I get with the $40 from Amazon? Music of course. I picked up the following:
2018 is upon us and always fun anticipating what new albums are and will come out in the year. There are quite a few we already know about, but some haven’t been officially announced or even a date set yet. From what I have gathered around the internet, here are the bands that should have new albums out in 2018, but no dates announced yet. The ones I want will be highlighted in Blue.
Stone Temple Pilots (I know this is coming as they have said)
We are up to 2012 for my Throwback Thursday list. I feel 2012 was a relatively weak year for new music. This year, it was mostly rock that got me going. Only one country artist made the list (sort of country and she made the honorable mention at that). Not much else excited me, but the ones that did I really enjoyed. Here are my Top albums for 2012 (in no particular order).
Lit – The View From The Bottom: So glad these guys came back and did another album. It had been way too long since their last album. Their return was well worth the wait. A great collection of songs and was probably my 2nd favorite album of the year. I loved “Miss You Gone”, “The Wall” and “Same Shit, Different Drink” just to name a few. Just good, fun, rock & roll.