2017 is slowly drawing to a close. Halloween has passed and shops are gearing up for Christmas – which seems a bit extreme as its only November, but whatever. This year was a tragic year for heavy metal, with a number of great musicians passing away. But, there were also some kickass releases.
So I thought it would be cool to look back at some of the top 9 heavy metal records from 2017. so here they are, in no particular order:
Firewind – Immortals
Firewind has some great music. 2017 saw them release the album “Immortals”. The song “Ode to Leonidas” has a strong 300 theme to it.”If you thirst for metal, I shall give you my cup”. Nice. The video for this is done up like 300 which is pretty cool, but the actors could have with tracking their macros for a month or two beforehand. Does this mark a move in the direction of Sabaton, with more metal music based on historical battles? We shall see. In the meantime, check out the video for the song:
Xandria – Theatre of Salvation
The vocals in Xandria have always been pretty epic. Call of Destiny (no, not Call of Duty) is the fourth track form their new album, Theatre of Salvation. Dianne van Giersbergen has a great vibrato on her voice in this song, and the guitar players bring plenty of shred. There is plenty of sword singing in this one, so if you like Vikings or Game of thrones, you’re probably going to enjoy it. Check it out below:
Crystal Viper – Queen of Witches
Marta Gabriel’s band Crystal Viper has been kicking ass on the heavy metal scene for a while now. Its safe to say that her vocals are ridiculously awesome and she puts them to full force in the song The Witch is Back. This song is a heavy metal masterpiece. Great riffs, lea guitars, vocals, tasteful interludes; the song has it all. The video for The Witch is Back splits between the band and slow motion shots of the band and some grainy old school looking black and white. Pretty epic. My favourite bit is at around 3:50 when the lead guitar and vocal melody match up. That’s a neat trick I’ll be pinching for my next few songs.
The witch will bring you love:
Sam Russell – Impetuous Desire
I had to slip a bit of self-promotion into this list somewhere! 2017 saw my first heavy metal release, Impetuous Desire. Drawing on influence from Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, I got together some musicians, hire a singer, and wrote a record. You can hear the single “Tonight” here. If you dig it, you can get some free songs here
Night Ranger – Don’t Let Up
You have to watch this first:
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A new release from Night Ranger? Awww yeah. Feel good sing along hard rock (this isn’t really metal… but you’ll love it). Harmonised guitars, catchy vocals. Love what the guitars are doing in the verse on this one, they build very nicely. Sit back, turn up and enjoy some Night Ranger
Axel Rudi Pell – Ballads V
Hot damn Axel Rudi Pell totally rocks. The king of ballads, he writes some killer songs. 2017 saw him release Ballads V, a collection, surprisingly, of his ballads. The cover art for Axel Rudi Pell is always 10x darker than the music, its awesome. I got to see Axel Rudi Pell play at the Underworld in London a few years ago, great show. Check out a track from Ballads V:
I Solstafir in London on Halloween last year I think it was. I’m never sure how to describe their music, it’s pretty unique. Their new record is definitely in their style, but with new songs. It’s refreshing to see a band that doesn’t just recycle the same thing over and over. Check it out here:
Pink Cream 69 – Headstrong
When I first discovered this band, I was thinking “What the hell, who the fuck calls a band Pink Cream 69?”. Then I listened to Thunderdome, and my view promptly shifted to “Fuck yeah Pink Cream 69!”. They released a new record, Headstrong, this year. They released a lyric video for the single Man of Sorrow. It’s pretty cool and has the band, what I assume is, recording different parts of the song in their studios (or ghosting along for the video, who knows?). Either way, this is a killer song.
I think that is a good place to leave it!