All songs on this segment are gathered in a Spotify playlist, you can find it here
The Classics: Annihilator - King of The Kill and Joe Satriani - Surfing With The Alien
Annihilator have always been lurking way back in the shadows of the thrash giants, doing their own thing for over thirty years. They have created some great songs over the years, and while none of them have made it truly big, some have gotten a cult following over the years. "King of The Kill" is as simple as it gets. It is straight forward riff based chugging that is catchy, heavy, and simply kick ass. It is with moments like these where Annihilator truly impress, crushing everything in their path.
Joe Satriani is one of the most well respected guitar players in the scene, having tons of experience and is responsible for teaching several great guitarists, such as Alex Skolnick, Larry LaLonde, and Kirk Hammett. He has had quite a musical career too, like creating one of the best instrumental albums of all time, "Surfing With The Alien". The title track is an amazing song, with unique and mind blowing guitar play from Satriani. You can just close your eyes, and see the Silver Surfer riding through the voids in front of you, surfing on the solar winds.
The Newcomers: Meshuggah - Clockworks and Alter Bridge - Show Me A Leader
When Meshuggah releases a new album, you know that you are gonna be in for a beating, a good one. "Clockworks" opens up the new album "The Violent Sleep of Reason", and what an opening it is. Haake starts it up with some fast cymbal hits, that then develops into classic Meshuggah, an incredibly complex and chaotic rhythmic storm that works like... well... clockwork. Huh, I guess the name spoke for itself. Anyway, it is Meshuggah, it is still god damn awesome.
Check out my review of the album this song is from, "The Violent Sleep of Reason"
Alter Bridge solidifies their spot as my favourite current hard rock band with another great release in "The Last Hero", an album that opened up in the absolute best way possible. "Show Me A Leader" is everything that I want from the band, a Tremonti that goes ham on the guitar, a Kennedy that delivers another powerful performance, and a song that is catchy as hell, without being annoying. Still to this day, a couple of weeks after release, I keep "whoa-oh whoa-oh-oh-oh" ing till the night turns to day, and I bet you do too.
Check out my review of the album this song is from, "The Last Hero"
The Personal Favourites: Soilwork - Deliverance Is Mine and Judicator - How Long Can You Live Forever
It would be easy to pick a Soilwork song from their last two albums, that are really good, but I have a crush on a hidden gem from "The Panic Broadcast", an uneven album that did lay the foundation for "The Living Infinite". "Deliverance Is Mine" is simply awesome, a Björn "Speed" Strid who is at his most aggressive mood delivers a powerful performance that blasts through the speakers with ease. The punch is fast and hard, and the band makes sure that it hits on all the right places. Melodic death metal goodness.
Last year, Judicator drop a bomb that I think went unnoticed to way too many metal heads. "At The Expense of Humanity" is a fantastic concept record about a man who gets cancer and does everything (literally everything) to fight it. The album ends with the epic "How Long Can You Live Forever", a beautiful song that has so many layers, so many emotions, and so many awesome moments, it can take months to unravel every bit of this track. The slow and moody opening, the emotional vocals, the lyrics, the tempo shifts, yes everything with this song is pure quality. Go check these guys out if you have not already, this is a band that I will not allow you to miss.
Robert "Sharkruisher" Andersson