TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 2016!

It’s been unquestionable that 2016 has been, if we’re going to put it very mildly, a whirlwind of a year across several areas of the world. What’s also just as unquestionable is how fantastic of a year it has been for new music and releases, with newborn classic after newborn classic hitting our inboxes and our ears far more often than we’re used to, and we’ve been absolutely loving it.

Consequently, it’s been pretty tough to pull our brains together, split the opinions, define our true loves and hates, but we’ve done it. So, here we have what we collectively feel have been the top 10 best albums to have come out across the past 12 months. If you haven’t heard any of these yet, get that sorted out. Immediately.

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Whether you’re into tech, prog or black metal, there’s going to be something you’ll love on A Sense of Gravity‘s new record ‘Atrament’. The Seattle band channel Between The Buried And Me and Sleepytime Gorilla Museum with eccentric harsh vocals from CJ Jenkins that extend into powerful singing melodies with ease. To introduce us all to A Sense Of Gravity, we got the band to each pick an album that has inspired and impacted them musically.

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FEATURE: Aaron Keylock’s Top 5 Songs for Guitarists

Teenage guitar sensation Aaron Keylock is about to take over the rock world with the big riffs he has in store for his upcoming debut record ‘Cut Against The Grain’ next January. Astonishingly just 18 years old, Aaron has already hit the road with Blackberry Smoke, The Graveltones and Wilko Johnson, and just released tracks ‘Against The Grain’ and ‘All The Right Moves’. To see where he picked up his knowledge from, we got Aaron to choose his top 5 tracks for guitar players:

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BANDS THAT INSPIRE: Bare Knuckle Parade

Indie rockers Bare Knuckle Parade are warming up for their debut release scheduled for Summer 2017 by dropping new single ‘Come Alive’ via Dirty 38 Records. Frontman Jamie Beale had this so say about the new song: “This song came out of such an organic place, and rings true with all of us – there is an underlying sense of freedom and release in this track that we all felt when we recorded it in the studio… and that same feeling is present every single time we play it live – it’s a no bullshit record!”.
We tied the band down and got them to pick 5 songs that helped shape them as a band.

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FEATURE: The Lion & The Wolf’s Top 5 Tour Survival Tips!

It’s very likely you’ve encountered The Lion & The Wolf at a show or festival across Europe as it’s impossible to keep the singer-songwriter out of the tour van. Thomas George, as he’s known during the day, has just dropped album number 2 ‘The Cardiac Hotel’ through Xtra Mile Records and is hitting the road to celebrate it, as per usual. We caught up with the soloist to get his top 5 tips of how to survive while being out on tour.

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FEATURE: How the music scene responded to Donald Trump becoming the US president!

By now, pretty much everyone in the world is aware of the outcome from last night’s US presidential election day, seeing perhaps one of the most visceral and venomous campaigns seen in the history of US politics. Even most of those who had voted for winner Donald Trump to become the country’s 45th president had been surprised (those voting for Trump pleasantly so, of course) by the result, especially seeing as though the candidate has pretty much no political experience until he ran for office.

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If you’re into metalcore with melodies and screams coming out it’s ears then you’ll need to check out Owleye – the Denver boys know exactly how to write a song that’ll make you sing and bang your head til your whole upper body hurts some way or another. To get a glimpse at what inspired them, we spoke to the guys about albums that influenced their latest EP ‘No Wounds’ and made them start playing music in the first place.

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FALLEN HEROES: Mitch Lucker (Suicide Silence)

It’s a somber truth that recent years have seen the passing of some unquestionably iconic figures of our world, whether contemporary future legends or seasoned veterans. Although all as emotionally impactful as the last, the untimely demise of Suicide Silence vocalist extraodinaire Mitch Lucker in late 2012 was met with a particularly anguished outcry, as it not only halted the growing legacy of perhaps one of metal’s most celebrated, and indeed influential frontmen, but saw him survived by his young family, daughter Kenadee aged 4, and wife Jolie Carmadella.

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FEATURE: Six Time Champion’s Top 5 Tips For Being In A Band!

“Always writing about my own personal issues is quite a self-involved act, and I just hope that these songs do actually reach out on a personal level to people other than myself,” declares James Dagg, vocalist of Brighton pop-punks Six Time Champion, discussing the origin of the title for newly released EP ‘More Than Me’. The band are back on track having put out the five tracker, but also following a period of respite. Recorded at The Outhouse with John Mitchell (Architects, Lower Than Atlantis), ‘More Than Me’ sees the quintet slickening up, whilst still retaining the somewhat aggressive edge that has become their hallmark, over their prior 2 releases. Having been “on the scene” for some years now, the band wanted to impart their knowledge, with 5 tips for being in a band…

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TRACK-BY-TRACK: Hello Bear – I Don’t Know…It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It?

Hello Bear‘s fun, charming brand of powerpop-rock is sure to have you smiling from ear to ear and their brand new EP ‘I Don’t Know…It’s Fun Though, Isn’t It?’ is their most essential listening yet. The Norwich band combine influences from all sorts of punk and alternative rock bands like Weezer, Descendents and Pavement, but their sound remains unique and fresh. We got Hello Bear to run through the EP and give an overview of each track to give us an insight to their songwriting and production.

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