201-300 Retrospective

Finally got to that time again. Thanks to moving there is a pretty large gap in the schedule. But perseverance will win in the end. I’m not gonna say much here and just get on with the list, after some stats.

Total artists: 92 (but again, counting all of the Scott Pilgrim soundtrack as one)
Total tracks: 1176
Total length: 87:58:28

Alright, it’s kind of weird that the total length of each 100 albums so far has managed to stay within an hour of each other. I think at least. Moving on.

1. Altar Of Plagues – Mammal
Another solid release by this band, a wonderful mix of post-rock and black metal. I especially love the third track, it’s really creepy. It definitely deserves more of my attention.

2. Ayreon – Into The Electric Castle
A pretty much perfect album. There’s almost nothing bad I can say about it. The only issue I ever had was with its scope, meaning that it’s a big album with a lot of tracks that are each doing their own thing, and so it took me a few listens to fully grasp the album, or rather the opera. Once I did though the emotional high that comes from listening to this album can’t be ignored.

3. Cobalt – Eater Of Birds
Cobalt’s strongest effort I’ve heard so far, I simply understood it more than Gin. Everything made more sense, the songwriting, the album structure, it just all flowed better through my mind, as dumb as that sounds. This album is pretty much all you can ask for from black metal.

4. Dark Tranquillity – Character
This was the first album I heard by the band, and one of the first albums in the Gothenburg style entirely. I loved the ‘modern’ feeling on it and how it was aggressive but melodic. It’s a strange thing, just looking at the track titles and everything I kind of forget how much I like the album until I hear it.

5. Devilish Impressions – Diabolicanos – Act III: Armageddon
This is another album where I didn’t understand what I was listening to at first, though this was more due to it being weird as crap. Avant-garde black death metal is almost a bit hard to categorize. The group just does what they want it seems. Also as always, keeping the vocals varied goes a long way to keeping my interest.

6. Devin Townsend – Terria
The first solo Devin I listened to, it’s worth all the hype. The album covers so much ground and yet it’s all consistent. The only thing I can fault it for is the bonus track, where Devin’s love of weird ambient stuff comes through, but it is a hidden track so I’ll be fair. Just an amazing album all around.

7. Ensiferum – Iron
As I stated just a few posts ago, this is pretty much a perfect album. Not much more to be said, if you’re curious about Jari pre-Wintersun or just want a good album, check it out.

8. Franz Ferdinand – You Could Have It So Much Better
While this is still not their strongest album in my opinion, it’s quite solid and almost every song is fun. It just kind of flows and is over before you realize it. Just plain catchy.

9. Freak Kitchen – Land Of The Freaks
I remember having that fear the first time I listened to it if Freak Kitchen would have lost their… own way of doing things over the years. While I miss using more varied instruments, the songwriting and performance is still top notch. Solid as crap album.

10. Freak Kitchen – Spanking Hour
Another really good performance here. Some of the songs aren’t quite as fast but other than the production and mastering you could easily interchange songs between this album and the other one, despite 13 years of difference. That’s something to be admired.

11. Imogen Heap – Speak For Yourself
A fantastic pop album, the amount of effort put into every track is ridiculous. I think everyone could find at least a few songs to like on here.

12. Kamelot – Epica
A very solid power metal album, other than the interlude tracks there’s not really a bad song on here. I still don’t entirely care about the story but it’s neat to have.

13. Less Than Jake – B Is For B-Sides
Simply a really nice little album. Like I said in the review, how some of these tracks got relegated to b-side is beyond me, this is as good as some of their other albums.

14. Lovage – Music To Make Love To Your Old Lady By
Alright, maybe this isn’t one of my favorite albums ever personally. It is pretty great though, and it deserves a spot on here simply for introducing me to a type of music I’m unfamiliar and (eventually) getting me to like it. I still have issues with this album but I won’t bring them up here.

15. Mirrorthrone – Carriers Of Dust
If you’re looking for symphonic black metal, then you have the perfect album right here. Just unbelievable and it caught me from the first time I heard it.

16. Murder By Death – Red Of Tooth And Claw
Ridiculously cool album here. Still a couple boring tracks but it deserves the spot on the list.

17. My Chemical Romance – The Black Parade
I wasn’t entirely taken with this album the first time I heard it, but it has grasped me fully since then. I don’t like some of the aesthetics on it or a song or two, but the rest is great and just works so well and got better with each listen.

18. Negură Bunget – Vîrstele Pămîntului
negurabunget-Vîrstele Pămîntului
This album is another one that took me a few listens. It’s highly atmospheric but also has its heavy parts, so it’s pleasing all around. Also another album that deserves more of my attention.

19. Oingo Boingo – Boi-Ngo
As usual, there will be a Boingo album on the list. This is probably my least favorite Boingo album but damn if it still isn’t good enough to beat out tons of other albums.

20. Ragnarok – Diabolical Age
One of those albums that surprised the hell out of me. I wasn’t expecting much, but I got a really aggressive, well done, great sounding black metal record. Still don’t know how this band doesn’t get name dropped more based on this album alone.

21. Rhapsody Of Fire – Symphony Of Enchanted Lands
This is where the band really came into their own. They had the budget for great sounding symphonic parts, the songwriting was better, and everything else was great as well.

22. Sigh – In Somniphobia
Just a fantastic album. Avant-garde black metal where Sigh does whatever the crap they want and it all works fantastically.

23. Sonata Arctica – Ecliptica
Not actually one of my favorites by them but it’s pretty strong overall, and classic power metal.

24. Stratovarius – Elements Pt. 1
A supremely surprising album. Stratovarius had never entirely impressed me, until this. Just wow. Also kind of strange that one of best and more unique tracks is a bonus song.

25. Streetlight Manifesto – Everything Goes Numb
Just look at the review a few posts ago. Pretty much perfect.

26. Talking Heads – Little Creatures
What a great album to start listening to this band with. I have a few qualms with this album but in the end I’m not sure they entirely matter.

27. The Beatles – Abbey Road
This is the first Beatles that really gripped me. It immediately grabbed a hold and was pretty enjoyable the whole way through. Still not the biggest fan of the medley but it’s not too big a deal.

28. The Books – Thought For Food
The Books - thought-for-food
Kind of on here for the same reason as Lovage. I didn’t really get it or like it at first, but over time my thoughts changed and I saw the appeal. A lot of it is still weird for me but I can deal with it.

29. The Dear Hunter – Act II: The Meaning Of, & All Things Regarding Ms. Leading
Unbelievably good album, you would do yourself a huge favor by checking this out. Words can’t entirely describe it.

30. The Dear Hunter – Act III: Life And Death
A great follow up to the previous album. Not as expansive or ambitious but good in its own ways.

31. The Lonely Island – Incredibad
As I said in the review, this is by far the group’s best effort. Even the interludes are good, that’s how much I like the album.

32. The Lord Weird Slough Feg – Atavism
An album I didn’t entirely understand the first time I heard it. I liked what I was hearing, but I didn’t get why some songs were really short and others were of a decent length, and it even still puzzles me a bit. I guess it’s better to leave people wanting more rather than going on too long.

33. The Muppets – The Muppets Original Soundtrack
It’s kind of weird how much I like this. Well not really weird. Just a nice little bunch of songs.

34. The Planet Smashers – No Self Control
I kind of ignored this Smashers album for a long time, it didn’t really appeal to me. Now it feels like one of their strongest, and there is a nice amount of variety on here.

35. Tulus – Biography Obscene
I could almost say that this album would get on here for the first song alone, but that’s overselling the song a bit. It’s an amazing song that most of the rest album doesn’t quite live up to, but that rest of the album is great too.

36. Weird Al Yankovic – Bad Hair Day
I kind of had to debate with myself about putting Weird Al on this list. In the end though this is one of his most consistent, there’s only one or two songs I don’t like and it has some great classics.

So now it’s time for the Honorable Mentions and I’m pretty sure there will be a lot of them. This was a great 100 albums.

1. Andromeda – Chimera
Andromeda never stays quite the same. This album is its own thing a bit, and it deserves more of my attention but I can’t really give it a very good recommendation so it goes on here.

2. Angra – Aqua
This is actually pretty solid, but it’s not as catchy as the band’s previous and the production is just kind of weird.

3. Arcturus – Sideshow Symphonies
Not a shabby album at all, but not as catchy or interesting as it could be.

4. Behemoth – Zos Kia Cultus (Here And Beyond)
Behemoth Zos Kia Cultus Here and Beyond cover_front
This is honestly really good but Behemoth and I don’t entirely get along. I wish I could figure out why, but for now that unknown reason is why the album goes here.

5. Blind Guardian – Memories Of A Time To Come
Due to the nature of this being a ‘best of’ I couldn’t really justify putting it on the main list, but it having all the songs be remixed and whatnot and them all being great songs means it easily gets on here.

6. Candlemass – Candlemass
Most of the stronger tracks are up in the front end, but a pretty solid album honestly. Just not quite good enough though.

7. Cobalt – Gin
This is actually a pretty cool album as well, but I just didn’t quite feel like putting it in the main list.

8. Dark Moor – Tarot
This album is almost too cheesy for its own good, but the bigger songs get it a place on this list at least.

9. Dragonland – Holy War
Dragonland - Holy War
The band’s sophomoric effort is nothing amazing, but stands well on its own.

10. Falconer – Armod
There’s not really a bad song on here but I didn’t quite love it enough to place it on the main list.

11. Falkenbach – …Magni Blandinn Ok Megintiri…
Falkenbach - Magni Blandinn Ok Megintiri - Front 1
Neat and somewhat unique folk metal, but I have a couple issues with it so here it is.

12. Falls Of Rauros – The Light That Dwells In Rotten Wood
Neat black metal, but the actual metal parts sound kind of weak.

13. Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five – The Message
Grandmaster Flash The Message
This definitely gets on the honorable mentions based on its status as a classic alone and the for first track and title track.

14. Gris – Il Était Une Forêt…
Gris - Il était une forêt...
One guy would punch me for not putting it at least on here. I like a good amount of it but don’t listen to it enough.

15. Hellveto – Kry
Pretty cool black/folk metal, but not really deserving of the main list.

16. In Mourning – Shrouded Divine
Same thing as above honestly, except replace it with melodic death metal.

17. Iron Maiden – Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son
Iron Maiden - Seven Son Of A Seven Son
There are some great tracks on here but I just couldn’t put it on the main list for whatever reason.

18. Karnivool – Sound Awake
Some really cool sounds marred by wanting to be too much like Tool or some nonsense. I look forward to what these guys do next though.

19. Korpiklaani – Spirit Of The Forest
This band is always just fun enough to get on here.

20. Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin IV
I have to put this on here at least. I mean, like this whole album is the definition of ‘classic’.

21. Mors Principium Est – Liberation = Termination
Really cool album but not good enough for the main list.

22. NOFX – The War On Errorism
I wasn’t even sure about putting this on the honorable list, but hey why not. That first song is really strong and there’s not really anything outright bad on it.

23. Operation Ivy – Operation Ivy
4PGFLDR.QXD (Page 1)
This gets on here as a classic album as well. I like it well enough.

24. Pink Floyd – A Saucerful Of Secrets
Pink Floyd - A Saucerful Of Secrets - Front
There are some amazing tracks on here and I think if it wasn’t for a couple of the shorter tracks it could have gotten on the main list.

25. Reel Big Fish – Cheer Up!
A lot of really great songs marred by a bad tracklisting and a few other bad choices.

26. Reverend Bizarre – In The Rectory Of The Bizarre Reverend
Same dude as Gris would punch me for not putting this on here either. I still am not the biggest fan of doom metal but this album is cool.

27. Rhapsody Of Fire – Legendary Tales
The band’s first album has some big issues, but its charm can sometimes outweigh them. Still, not quite good enough to be on the main list.

28. Strapping Young Lad – Alien
I’ll reiterate my reasons from the review for putting it on here: the album structure is way too lopsided. The constant heaviness is too much with the mastering on here and having to get through something like 3/4 of the album for the first break from it is too long.

29. Stratovarius – Elements Pt. 2
Definitely not as good as Pt. 1 but it has some good stuff as well.

30. The Flaming Tsunamis – Zombies Vs. Robots!
A really fun little EP, but not one of my favorites I guess.

31. The Pillows – Good Dreams
This one had an internal debate as well. I kind of love it but it’s not quite good enough for the main list.

32. Tool – 10,000 Days
I like this more each time I hear it but I still wouldn’t quite put it on the main list.

33. Wolfchant – Call Of The Black Winds
A semi-solid album and notable to me for the improvements the band has made, but still just only above average.

34. Zebrahead – MFZB
A pretty cool pop-punk album. I can’t get over the slight embarrassment enough to rank it really high but there is some fun stuff in it.


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