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The Best of 2009!

In addition to my top picks for 2009, you can also read the top 5 picks from Mike, Pete, and Ty. Since we all have different tastes, it makes more sense to see different folks' opinions.

Dan's Picks for the Best of 2009

My #1 choice was easy this year. There really were no competitors. The problem I had though, was separating #2-#5 and the Honorable Mentions. That was damned near impossible and several bands flip-flopped into and out of my top 5 before all was said and done.

A few thoughts:

The Also Rans

Asphalt Valentine - Strip Rock Roll
Bad Attitude - Prisoners of Rock
Balance - Equilibrium
Blackwood Creek - S/T
Burn Halo - S/T
Cage - Science of Annihilation
Charlemagne - S/T
Charm City Devils - Let's Rock-N-Roll
Chastain, David T. - Heavy Excursions
Chickenfoot - S/T
Constancia - Lost and Gone
Crash the System - The Crowning
Crooked X - S/T
Dark Illusion - Where the Eagles Fly
Deathstars - Night Electric Night
Dr. Grind - Speechless
Dream Theater - Black Clouds and Silver Linings (Special Edition)
Eden's Curse – The UK Tour Collection
Fair Warning - Aura (2-CD Limited Edition)
Gotthard - Need to Believe
Great White - Rising
Gynger Lynn - Gynger Lynn
High Noon - No Turning Back
House of Lords - Cartesian Dreams
Jaded Heart - Perfect Insanity
Jorn - Spirit Black Jungle Blue - Call of the Wild
KISS - Sonic Boom
Laney, Chris - Pure
Lima, Johnny - Livin' Out Loud
Los Angeles - Neverland
Lou Gramm Band - S/T
Lynch Mob - Smoke and Mirrors
Mr. Big - Back to Budokan
On the Rise - Dream Zone
Owens, Tim Ripper - Play My Game
Pink Cream 69 - Live in Karlsruhe
Pistol Dawn - Conversation Piece
Place Vendome - Streets of Fire
Places of Power - Now Is the Hour
Primal Fear - 166
Road Ratt - You Love Us
Royal Bliss - Life In-Between
Saint Daemon - Pandeamonium
Sargant Fury – Do You Remember (Box Set)
Sgt. Roxx - Weapon of Miss Distraction
Solna - Eurameric
Soto, Jeff Scott - Live in Madrid
Spinal Tap - Back from the Dead
Street Legal - Bite the Bullet
Stryper - Murder by Bride
Sunstorm - House of Dreams
Tall Stories - Skyscraper
Taupier - That Was Then...
The Urgency - The Urgency
Tinted Windows - S/T
Trans-Siberian Orchestra - Night Castle
Threshold - Singles Collection
Toxic Heart - S/T
Trophy, The - The Gift of Life
Veer Union, The - Against the Grain
Vision Divine - 9 Degrees West of the Moon
Wetton-Downes - Icon 3
Winger - Karma
ZO2 - Casino Logic

Honorable Mentions

Cain's Offering - Gather the Faithful. The best damned thing Timo Kotipelto (Stratovarius) has done in years! Put him at the helm of Sonata Arctica and you've got an idea of what this sounds like. Extremely lush and melodic with great harmonic choruses. Lots of epic melodic power metal.
Danger Danger - Revolve. A pleasant surprise and better than expected! Nice and crunchy.
Farcry - High Gear. I know the guitarist from somewhere, but I just can't quite put my finger on it... ;) A solid upbeat hard rock album; good radio fodder.
Foreigner - Can't Slow Down (2CD + DVD). Another pleasant surprise. Hansen's voice fit's the material perfectly.
Halestorm - S/T. This babe has some balls! and I mean that in a good way.
Last Vegas, The - Whatever Gets You Off. Melodic sleaze that rocks pretty darned hard.
Leverage - Circus Colossus. Excellent melodic prog from the buys from Finland. This one needs some time to grow. Solid, but I'm not sure whether I prefer it or Tides.
Outloud - S/T. Good-time melodic hard rock, very upbeat. Nothing overly remarkable, just extremely well executed.
Praying Mantis - Sanctuary. Nice comeback album. The new vocalist works quite well.
Spin Gallery - Embrace. Very lush westcoast, reminds of a blend of Grand Illusion, Cannata, and Big Generator-era Yes. This one crept in and out of my top 5.
Steel Panther - Feel the Steel. What can you say about these guys that hasn't already been said? Hiding behind the schtick is some darned solid musicianship!
W.E.T. - S/T. Top notch JSS effort. The only thing keeping it out of the top 5 is that it sounds like too many previous JSS albums.
Within Temptation - An Acoustic Night at the Theatre. The acoustic treatment of many standards is refreshing, and some of the tracks sound like entirely new songs.

Dan's Winners

5th Place

cover Delain - April Rain. Their debut CD was decent, if not memorable, female-fronted gothic hard rock. This sophomore effort is a major step up, with keyboards taking a more prominent role and more effort being given to the choruses. Lots more vocal harmonies than on the debut. There is no filler on this one. Here is the music video for the title track from the CD.

4th Place

cover Blanc Faces - Falling from the Moon. Great traditional AOR with top notch production. Reminds me of vintage Styx in places with a little bit of westcoast thrown in for good measure. Here is one of my favorite tracks from the CD, Fly.

3rd Place

cover Hardline - Leaving the End Open. This one has created a fair amount of controversy. People either love it or hate it. Put me in the former category. While it is not as raucus or breathtaking as the debut (one of the greatest melodic hard rock CDs of all time, in my opinion), which would be a virtually impossible task, it is infinitely better than II. After seven years, this is a great comeback CD. It's more contemplative than hard rocking, but it works on several different levels. My favorite track on the CD is the closing number and titlle track, Leaving the End Open.

2nd Place

cover The Poodles - Clash of the Elements. Well fuck me sideways. Wasn't expecting this one. Sweet Trade was a solid effort but didn't hold my attention all that long. This albums craps all over that one. Energetic and in your face, in many respects over the top... and it works! Here is the music video for I Rule the Night.

Dan's Pick for Heavy Harmonies 2009 CD of the Year

cover Mastedon - 3 (released in the U.S. as "John Elefante and Mastedon - Revolution of Mind"). This has been getting nonstop play from me from the first time I heard it this fall. While #s 2-5 in my 2009 top 5 could have easily have swapped places with one another, nothing comes even close to this CD. I've always been a fan of John Elefante and the signature "Pakaderm Sound" which he and his brother Dino applied to so many superb Christian Rock albums of the 1980s and early 1990s. I feel that the 2 albums John fronted for Kansas are the best the band ever released. His voice is the quintessential AOR lead voice and has held up phenomenally over the years (Steve Walsh should be so lucky).

This CD is fantastic from start to finish. The production is lush, the orchestration rich, and the expected Elefante vocal harmonies are everpresent. After listening to this CD all the way through, it immediately made me dust off my CDs of the first 2 Mastedon releases (which I will never part with!).

For those who are somewhat wary of Christian lyrics, in my opinion the sentiments in the songs here are not over the top or too in your face. They never get in the way of the music itself.

Two of the best tracks on the disc for me are the power ballad "Nowhere Without Your Love" and "Lying", but the magnum opus and quite possibly song of the past several years is the Kansas-esque 11-minute epic One Day Down By the Lake (See You Real Soon).

Mike's Picks for the Best of 2009

The Also Rans

Alias - Never Say Never
Alice in Chains - Black Gives Way to Blue
Bon Jovi - The Circle
Buckcherry - Live and Loud 2009
Bulletboys - 10c Billionaire
Burn Halo - Burn Halo
Crooked X - Crooked X
Cry Havoc - Caught in a Lie
Dynazty - Bring The Thunder
Marc Ferreira - Working Overtime
Freakshow - Freakshow
Free Spirit - Pale Sister Of Light
Ace Frehley - Anomaly
Gotthard - Need to Believe
Great White - Rising
Hardlein - Down to the Fire
Hardline - Leaving the End Open
Heaven & Hell - The Devil You Know
High Noon - No Turning Back
Holy Water - The Collected Sessions
Steevi Jaimz - My Private Hell
Koritni - Game Of Fools
Chris Laney - Pure
Last Temptation - Better Late Than Never
Lillian Axe - Sad Day On Planet Earth
Johnny Lima - Livin' Out Loud
Lynch Mob - Smoke and Mirrors
Markonee - See The Thunder
Age Sten Nilsen - GLAMunition
Papa Roach - Metamorphosis
Pistol Dawn - Conversation Piece
Places Of Power - Now Is the Hour
Ted Poley - Greatestits Vol. 1
Problem Child - Primitive Attitude
Puddle of Mudd - Volume 4: Songs in the Key of Love & Hate
Queensryche - American Soldier
Reece - Universal Language
Sgt. Roxx - Weapon of Miss Distraction
Shake City - Shake City
Shortino - Chasing My Dream
Solna - Eurameric
Solna - Sent From Heaven
Soul Doctor - Way Back To The Bone
Stargazer - Stargazer
Steel Panther - Feel the Steel
Street Legal - Bite the Bullet
Strike Twice - Strike Twice
Stryper - Murder By Pride
Sunstorm - House of Dreams
Tango Down - Damage Control
The Trophy - The Gift of Life
Uzi - Madhouse
Wildstreet - Wildstreet

Honorable Mentions

Blackwood Creek - Blackwood Creek. More of a "classic rock" sound than Kip's Winger material, and he, brother Nate, and friend Peter do it VERY well.
Charm City Devils - Let's Rock-n-Roll. Sleazy hard rock in the vein of Airbourne or The Last Vegas with some AC/DC thrown in.
Chickenfoot - Chickenfoot. Hagar, Satriani, Anthony & Smith (HSAS II) hook up to produce a monster release that BARELY missed my top 5! "Sexy Little Thing" & "My Kinda Girl" are my faves from a great batch of songs!
Covered Call - Money Never Sleeps. Great melodic rock / AOR release featuring the impeccable Thomas Vikstrom on vocals.
Crash The System - The Crowning. While I do enjoy Vikstrom's work immensely, it's Goran Edman's tracks that steal the show on this disc. "Mysterious" & "Broken Glass" are two of my favorite songs of 2009.
Danger Danger - Revolve. This one misses the top 5 by just a hair. D2 are back, and rockin' better than ever! "That's What I'm Talking About" , "Killin' Love" & "F.U. are several of the best from this excellent return!
Daughtry - Leave This Town. Daughtry could have easily phoned it in on their sophomore release, but they came back with another excellent modern rock disc.
FarCry - High Gear. Killer hard rock featuring some guy from Jersey named "Pete" on guitar; they manage to kick some serious ass despite his involvement. ;-)
Foreigner - Can't Slow Down. Foreigner return with Kelly Hansen at the helm on vocals, and deliver a damn fine effort. The title track and "In Pieces" are stand outs.
Hot Leg - Red Light Fever. Justin Hawkins picks up where the Darkness left off; "Ashamed" and "Whichever Way You Wanna Give It" are great!
The Last Vegas - Whatever Gets You Off. Excellent sleaze tinged hard rock. "Apologize" is one of the best ballads of the year.
The Lou Gramm Band - The Lou Gramm Band. A nice return to action for Lou Gramm; well done CCM hard rock.
Lovehammers - Heavy Crown. Great modern rock featuring Marty Casey of Rockstar: INXS and L.A. Guns fame.
The Poodles - Clash Of The Elements. Not up to the lofty standards of their previous disc IMO, but still a darn fine effort. "One Out of Ten" & "I Rule the Night" are faves.
Steadlur - Steadlur. My fave modern rock release of 2009. These guys pump out choruses that are catchier than a cold!
W.E.T. - W.E.T.. Excellent release featuring the mighty Jeff Scott Soto on vocals. "Brothers in Arms" is one of the best songs of 2009!

Mike's Winners

5th Place

cover Winger - Karma. After the abysmal "IV", I talked myself into not expecting very much from the new Winger release. Well, to say I was pleasantly surprised when I cranked this one up would be an understatement. Kip and company have managed to pick up where the harder edged material from "Pull" left off, and fuse it perfectly with a more modern sound. "Deal With the Devil" and "Stone Cold Killer" kick the disc off with a BANG, and then the excellent "Witness" wraps it up perfectly. Great disc!

4th Place

cover Grand Design - Time Elevation. Wow. Think Def Leppard's "Hysteria" with a dash of "Adrenalize" thrown in for good measure. This is a killer release with big, 80s style choruses featuring lots of vocal harmonies, and great songs to match. "Love Sensation", "Air It Out" and "Sad Sound of Goodbye" are the stand-outs from an excellent pack of songs. I'm definitely looking forward to hearing what these guys come up with on their sophomore effort!

3rd Place

cover Mastedon - 3. To be honest, if I'd gotten this CD sooner (I've only had it for a couple of weeks now) it may very well have taken the top spot. The word that comes to mind when I think of "3" is SUPERB. From the opening rocker "Revolution of Mind" to "Questions (It's About Time)" to my personal fave "Lying" this release exudes CLASS. An excellent return for the brothers Elefante!

2nd Place

cover KISS - Sonic Boom. Who knew they still had it in 'em? If "Sonic Boom" turns out to be KISS' last studio release, then they are going out in style. Gene and Paul both sound re-energized on vocals, and Eric and Tommy do an excellent job with their vocal turns as well. From the opening rocker "Modern Day Delilah" to the sing along choruses of "Stand" and "Danger US", and the kickass closers "When Lightning Strikes" and "Say Yeah" this one kicks ass from start to finish. A monster release!

Mike's Pick for Heavy Harmonies 2009 CD of the Year

cover House of Lords - Cartesian Dreams. Back in 2006, "World Upside Down" was my number two release for the year, so I was expecting quite a bit (maybe too much?) from the follow-up. 2008 rolled around, and HoL released "Come to My Kingdom" which for whatever reason, barely registered with me. So, when "Cartesian Dreams" hit the streets here in 2009, I approached with guarded optimism, and was blown away. "Bangin'" is one of the catchiest, absolute best songs of the year, and along with other killer tracks like "Never Look Back", "Repo Man", "Saved By Rock" and the excellent ballad "The Train" to close it out, this is my most played, and most enjoyed release of 2009!

Pete's Picks for the Best of 2009

The Also Rans

Bad*Way – Dead Letters
Bon Jovi – The Circle
Burn Halo - s/t
Charlemagne - Charlemagne
Chickenfoot – s/t
Chris Laney – Pure
Creed – Full Circle
Eden's Curse – The UK Tour Collection
Edguy – Tinnitus Sanctus
Europe – Last Look at Eden
Freakshow - s/t
Great White - Rising
Gynger Lynn - Gynger Lynn
Hammerfall - No Sacrifice, No Victory
Hardcore Superstar - Beg for it
High Noon - No Turning Back
JC Satellite – Rule the World
Kiss - Sonic Boom
Marc Ferreira – Working Overtime
Megadeth – Endgame
Pistol Dawn - Conversation Piece
Primal Fear - 16.6
Revolution Renaissance – Age of Aquarius
Sargant Fury – Do You Remember (Box Set)
Saxon - Into The Labyrinth
Steel Panther - Feel the steel
Stryper – Murder By Pride
The Last Vegas – Whatever Gets You Off
UFO – The Visitor
W.E.T. – s/t
Warrior Soul – Destroy the War Machine
Wildstreet - s/t

Honorable Mentions

Dream Theater - Black Clouds & Silver Linings. Prog/power, no one does it better in my opinion
FarCry – High Gear. Hey, it's me, I gotta give it honorable mention at least right?
Heaven & Hell - The Devil You Know. Massive, meaty production, everybody in the band sounds better than ever, only missed my top 5 because I don't hear the hooks like I did on "Heaven & Hell" or "Mob Rules"
Lynch Mob – Smoke & Mirrors. Great return to form, not quite enough killer tracks for a top 5
Outloud - Outloud. More killer tracks like "We Run" and this would've been a top 5'er for sure
Place Vendome - Streets Of Fire. Melodic rock bliss, just a hair away from being in my top 5
Queensryche - American Soldier. Very mature, a real grower, can't compete with "Mindcrime" by any stretch, but still a very good and diverse listening experience
Reece - Universal Language. I don't know what I was expecting but this is some good heavy, soulful and melodic rock right here, worth a listen!
Tango Down - Damage Control. Kickass Ty Sims production and some good in yer face rock'n'roll
The Answer - Everyday Demons. Very, very good 70's style rock ala Humble Pie, Mott the Hoople
The Score – The Good, The Bad & The Ugly. Extremely well done South Jersey/Philly style 80's rock ala Aviator, etc.
Winger – Karma. Great production, and a much heavier album than IV, not enough hooks for me, but still a very good effort

Pete's Winners

5th Place

cover Johnny Lima - Livin' Out Loud. This album is one of those albums that just makes me a little sad that not more people know who Johnny Lima is. Pure, driving hard rock and a flair for writing hooks even Bon Jovi would be jealous of made this one of my favorite albums to crank up in the car this Summer with the sunroof open and the speedometer heading to the right of where the law says it should be.

4th Place

cover Daughtry – Leave This Town. Sellout? Maybe I am, but this little slab of melodic rock masquerading as modern just hits the spot on a number of levels for me. It's one of those discs that I can't help but sing along with in the car at max volume. Great mix of ballads, rockers, and emotionally charged anthems. The production albeit far from unlistenable is the only thing that doesn't thrill me completely with it's pre-Mutt Nickelback stylings, but Chris' voice and some massive hooks more than make up for it.

3rd Place

cover Papa Roach – Metamorphosis. Maybe a tad modern, but it seems every album these guys get a little further away from their rap/rock beginnings, this time to the point where you probably would never even guess that's where they came from if this was the first album you'd ever heard. Driving, anthemic but never too far from a melody, tracks like "Hollywood Whore" and "Lifeline" just suck you in with power and emotion.

2nd Place

cover House of Lords – Cartesian Dreams. "Big", is the main thing I can say about this production. As big as it is it fails to steal the show from James Christian's even bigger vocal effort this time around. The third album from HoL in the prolific period known as "post Power and Myth", like it's two predecessors it does not fail to deftly walk the fine line between melodic and heavy, and the hooks are just massive!

Pete's Pick for Heavy Harmonies 2009 CD of the Year

cover Danger Danger – Revolve. My god, I wasn't expecting this at all... after hearing last year's Marcello-Vestry with D2's Rob Marcello on guitar (obviously), plus Bruno Ravel writing, producing and playing bass, I expected something more along the lines of "Screw It!" which would have been awesome because I love that album. What I got instead was hooky, melodic, amazingly well delivered from one end of the disc to the other. The more I listened to it, the more I wanted to listen to it. As a result it has resided as disc #6 in my car CD changer since I got it. It is just that good, seriously I had high hopes for this disc and it exceeded even that.

Ty's Picks for the Best of 2009

Special Award: Stinker Of The Year

Hardline – Leaving The End Open. I was expecting the Hardline I grew to love in the early 90's but ended up getting a soft and squishy ballad laden AOR disk. After waiting forever for something to follow up 2002's Hardline II, which I liked, this was NOT what I was hoping for...

The Also Rans

Blanc Faces - Falling From The Moon
Blind Alley - Destination Destiny
Burn Halo - Burn Halo
Charlemagne - Charlemagne
Cycle Of Pain - Cycle Of Pain
Daughtry - Leave This Town
Delany - Blaze And Ashes
Fire - Thrill Me
Granit - Granit
Hellfueled - Emission of Sins
Holy Water - The Collected Sessions
House Of Lords - Cartesian Dreams
Like A Storm - The End Of The Beginning
Lillain Axe - Sad Day On Planet Earth
Los Angeles - Neverland
Lynch Mob - Smoke And Mirrors
Machines Of Grace - Machines Of Grace
Orianthi - Believe
Papa Roach - Metamorphosis
Sahara Rain - Send In Your Hands
Shakra - Everest
Society Red - Society Red
Soul Doctor - Way Back To The Bone
Soulicit - The Right Time
Stratovarius - Polaris
Sunstorm - House Of Dreams
Tara's Secret – Vertigo
The Trophy - The Gift Of Life
WASP - Babylon

Honorable Mentions

Chris Laney – Pure. Flat out, BALLS out rocker with snarly vocals and great anthems. A little weak in the songwriting, but he makes up for it in the choruses and guitar work.
Covered Call - Money Never Sleeps. I didn't get a chance to listen to this one a whole lot, but I can say that it did impress me with just the first spin, which isn't like other that took 3-4 spins. Nice production and song writing. The harmonies are fantastic.
Danger Danger – Revolve. Another one I wasn't expecting. I'm glad to hear that Danger Danger has made a full circle and are back to their roots with the sound that made them big to begin with Ted Poley hasn't missed a step and really delivers on this release. Andy Timmons had a huge pair of shoes to fill, but Rob Marcello does a fantastic job.
Dynazty - Bring The Thunder. Nazty, Gritty, Sleazy and in your face… That is all…
Far Cry - High Gear. Nice 80's rock sound with great melodies and guitar work from some hack named Pete… :-P (ok... I'm kidding about the hack part)
Gotthard - Need To Believe. This one took MANY spins to grow on me, which I didn't like. I like Gotthard and I know what I expect with one of their releases and this didn't have it all with the first spins. They lost their way in the late 90's and early 2000's, but had a nice return with Lipservice. Domino Effect was a little bit of a step down for me, but I still enjoyed it. I was hoping they'd rock it up a bit again, but they didn't in my opinion. This is still a good release, but needs a little more grit and balls.
Grand Design - Time Elevation. This would have easily made my top 5, but I could not get past the vocalist. Everything else is TOP NOTCH, but the singer sounds like he's got a clothes pin on his nose.
Johnny Lima - Livin' Out Loud. Another great rocker of a release from Johnny Lima. This is a nice continuation of his last release Version 1.2
Kiss - Sonic Boom. With all the hype, KISS needed to really deliver with this release. The die hard KISS fans were really laying it on with their bitching about Tommy and Eric using the Ace and Peter makeup, but if you can look past all that, this disk is quite the rocker. Paul Stanley takes the reins and delivers a disk in the style of Destroyer with hints of Revenge.
Naughty Boys - Destiny Calls. Another nice melodic rocker with great guitar work and vocals. This one took only 1 spin to get my attention. If the top 5 weren't as they are now, this one would have been there. Let's say as of now, it's at the 6 position!
Places Of Power - Now Is The Hour. Nice melodic rock disk that has a nice Shadow King and Hurricane feel to it.

Ty's Winners

5th Place

cover W.E.T. – W.E.T. This is another release that has been hyped up quite a bit and although it has a few dull moments, it's overall a solid piece of work. Stellar production, songwriting and guitar playing along with Jeff Scott Soto's smooth vocals really make this disk shine.

4th Place

cover Chickenfoot – Chickenfoot. Throwing one of the most influencial guitarists in the world (Satriani) in a band with one of rock'n'roll's best frontmen (Hagar) is bound to draw attention to begin with. Add to that the bass playing and backing vocals of Michael Anthony (Van Halen) and the drumming of Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers) and you have a killer combo that's going to steamroll much of the playing field. This CD had A LOT of attention and promotion before it was even released so they had to do something to live up to the hype. This was released on the world and I think it far surpassed what the fans were expecting. A few tracks kind of left me scratching my head, but overall, it's a very well done slab of rock'n'roll!

3rd Place

cover Koritni - Game Of Fools. Simple and effective is sometimes the best approach. These guys just plain rock without the gimmicks and fluff some other bands need to make an album. They have a raw and guitar riffy sound accompanied by gritty and snarly vocals in the style of Junkyard, Hair Of The Dog and KIX.

2nd Place

cover Coldspell - Infinate Stargaze. This is another band that blew me away. Each track has slightly different feel to it, but they all blend together well. Overall I get a Lynch Mob and Whitesnake comparison, which is quite a nice combo. With each listen I found new things to like with each track as well. There are lots of foot tapping tracks along with some flat out rockers.

Ty's Pick for Heavy Harmonies 2009 CD of the Year

cover The Poodles - Clash Of The Elements. What an unsuspecting name… I was expecting a glammy overdone Poison copycat band, but these guys really deliver some serious crunch in the style of Gotthard, Pink Cream 69 and Pretty Maids. Fantastic and TOP NOTCH production along with great songwriting, soaring melodies and guitar riffage all delivered in a nice solid package. After hearing this one, I had to backtrack and get their previous releases.

Existing comments about Best of 2009

From: Doghouse Reilly Date: February 8, 2014 at 12:40
Going alphabetical this timee, because I don't think I had a real favorite that year. Behemoth: Evangelion; Crank County Daredevils: s/t; DevilDriver: Pray For Villains; Goatwhore: Carving Out The Eyes Of God; Immortal: All Shall Fall; Kreator: Hordes Of Chaos; Mastodon: Crack The Skye; Megadeth: Endgame; Nashville Pussy: From Hell To Texas; Tenet: Sovereign.

From: Scandiman Date: February 7, 2018 at 16:09
Here is my listing of the best of 2009: Renegade five - Undergrounded Universe, The Storm - Black Luck, Place Vendome - Streets of Fire, Cain's Offering - Gather the Faithful, W.E.T. - S/T. Honorable mentions: Free Spirit - Pale Sister of Light, Gotthard - Need to Believe, Praying Mantis - Sanctuary, CounterClock - S/T, and Mastedon - 3.

From: Auslander Date: February 7, 2020 at 0:51
Agree with the reviewers who put Mastedon "3" right up there. All the Mastedon albums sound like a best of release from top quality bands. Not a single song is filler. It's always been a pity to me that Elefante didn't focus on Mastedon as his main gig. His solo albums are weak, adult contemporary stuff. Best of 2009 along with The Devin Townsend Project "Addicted.

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