So with the amount of time I am spending being inspired by music right now, I thought I'd list my ten favourite albums of all time. Give some of these a go if you dare ;)
Anathema - We're Here Because We're Here
I've spoken enough about this album. I've now listened to it three times and it ain't budging from the top of the list. It will take an album of truly Herculean proportions to unseat this one.
Best Tracks: Dreaming Light, Everything, Angels Walk Among Us, Hindsight
Devin Townsend - Infinity
Yes, that is a weird looking naked guy on the cover. Why?? Because that's what inspired musical geniuses do I suppose. I would likely have to label the opening song of this amazing journey as the greatest song ever written. 'Truth' is the musical equivalent of the creation of the universe. From there we go on a sonic journey that is explosive, all permeating and sometimes just plain insane. Some people may see it is a complete WTF of an album. I see it as a musical statement about life, the universe and everything on a grand scale. Magnificent.
Best Tracks: Truth, Bad Devil, Dynamics, Unity
Pain of Salvation - BE
An epic concept album detailing the creation of universe, the establishment and collapse of mankind and the re-creation of a new God to start it all over again. So many styles here. Orchestral, metal, tribal music, jazz, classical and brilliant storytelling, lyrics and composition.
Best Tracks: Pluvius Aestivus, Iter Impius, Martius Nauticus II
Anathema - A Natural Disaster
The second entry for Anathema on the list. Truly one of the most beautiful albums ever created. Haunting, emotional and soft this is an emotional experience. 'Closer' and 'Violence' are both pieces of art. 'Are You There?' may be the saddest song ever written. It's amazing. Listen to it.
Best Tracks: Closer, Are You There?, Electricity, Violence
Devin Townsend - Ocean Machine
This album has the distinction of spending the most time on my top 10 list of all time favourites. It has that distinction because it's AWESOME. Devin Townsend is the greatest musical genius of our time, and he agains proves it here with an homage to the ocean itself. This guy can really capture a sound and an atmosphere like no other and the one two three song punch of Funeral into Bastard into The Death of Music is probably the greatest 3 song flow I've ever heard. Funeral starts quietly, a peaceful homage to a dead brother, then flows into Bastard which rips your head off with sheer heaviness, then flows into The Death of Music, which sounds like the musical equivalent of the aftermath of a tidal wave that swept away all life. Devin Townsend you are not human.
Best Tracks: Life, Funeral, Bastard, The Death of Music, Things Beyond Things
Fates Warning - Disconnected
This album is an atmospheric masterclass. All the way through it sounds like the soundtrack of a disconnected futuristic wasteland. The emotional highpoint is the 16 minute 'Still remains' which is likely my favourite prog epic.
Best Tracks: Pieces of Me, Something from Nothing, Still Remains, Disconnected Part 2
Marillion - Marbles
If you are a pop music fan, then THIS is the album I would play you to convert you. Because it is a masterclass of soft, emotional, catchy and deep stuff that I think can be appreciated by everyone. This album has some of the most beautiful music I've ever heard and flows seamlessly from start to finish, and what a finish it is with 12 minute tribute to love 'Neverland' capping off the journey.
Best Tracks: Fantastic Place, The Only Unforgivable Thing, You're Gone, Angelica, Neverland
Amorphis - Silent Waters
Prog/Folk/Melodic Death Metal this is a truly stunning album with folk touches telling a story from the ancient Finnish book of legends the Kalevala. This is also second in a truly legendary string of three albums by this amazing band that also includes the brilliant Eclipse and the awe inspiring Skyforger.
Best Tracks: A Servant, Silent Waters, Her Alone, Shaman
Yes I know it's only been 8, but I have to run cause the All Blacks game is about to kick off!! ;)