Sometime in January of this year, I had a craving for Pantera's music. I hadn't really listened to these guys since high school, but when I heard them again, I didn't feel like I was in a timewarp. Receiving a copy of the band's "greatest hits" collection, I was struck by how incredible this music still was. I've always held fellow bands like Metallica close to me, but I never thought 2006 would be a year I would really get into a few newer metal bands.
I've thought all year long about why I feel drawn to this kind of music. Depending on the band, stuff like crunching power chords, noodly riffs, shouting/singing vocals and busy drumming don't seem stupid. They actually feel pretty inspiring. Again, this depends on the band.
A few metal bands have blown my mind this year and here's the list
I've posted so much about these guys this year, so I'll keep it short. This is some tuneful and tasteful metal that's also crushing. Alive or Just Breathing, The End of Heartache and As Daylight Dies received plenty of spins in my stereo this year.
Not necessarily metal, but not necessarily hardcore, Converge is well, Converge. A number of their songs may sound like spazzy gibberish at first, but they have a lot more going on than meets the eye. I listened to You Fail Me quite a bit this year, along with Jane Doe, but their '06 album, No Heroes, blew me away big time.
All That Remains
I've only heard a couple of All That Remains' songs, but I've really dug them. Their '06, The Fall of Ideals, features a lot more melody compared to their older material. More in the vein of Swedish death metal, ATR has a nice flair of nice melodies over blast beats.
Yes, this music is rather goofy (opera-like vocals, a handful of guitar solos in every song, etc.), but taken in small doses, this isn't bad. Looking past all the excess, these are some pretty tuneful (there's that word again) songs.