Album Review: Planeswalker — “Tales of Magic”

You know, I kind of can’t believe it’s taken until the year of our lord 2022 for someone to put power metal together with Magic: The Gathering on a big stage.  On paper, it seems like an obvious match made in heaven, especially considering that the immense amount of careful worldbuilding Wizards of the Coast has been doing with the most recent sets lends itself quite well to soaring vocals and bombastic guitars.  Maybe they aren’t the first, but Planeswalker are attempting to ramp up to bigger and better proportions on their debut Tales of Magic, summoning sickness be damned.

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Missed Connections: Looking Back on 2021

Best of 2021

Oh hey, you thought lists were all done?  Nope, I’ve got one more in the tank and some more albums to talk about.  I wrote one of these lists last year, amid a flurry of excitement and trepidation that I had missed something truly great, which is kind of a silly thing to worry about now that I think about it.  Of course I did then, and of course I do now.  There just isn’t enough time in the world for me to take every great album in, even in the span of a whole year.  And, not least of all, new bands and new albums are always being thrown my way thanks to the good folks we have on staff.  So, here I sit with some leftovers of 2021, albums that for whatever reason didn’t jump out at me right away but have since found their way into my heart.  Don’t consider these throwaways; they stack up to anything on anyone else’s list, and in fact, many of them WERE on other peoples’ list and that’s what brought them to my attention.  Just consider it a nice bonus present, post-holidays.

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Album Review: Wilderun — “Epigone”

Wilderun - Epigone

First review of 2022 and we certainly are starting things off with a bang.  Veil of Imagination was an album that quite solidly put Wilderun on the map of the uninitiated, rocketed to the top of many year-end lists, and got them almost immediately scooped up by Century Media Records.  Things seemed like they could only go up from there, but, as we’re all painfully aware, life sometimes has other plans for you.  Still, on Epigone, Wilderun manage to take all the pain and heartbreak that comes with the wild ups and downs of the music landscape and the world and turn it into something wildly beautiful.

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Best of 2021: Ian’s List

Best of 2021

Alright, the moment you all (read: maybe three of you) have been waiting for, although with the lists that are already up, I feel like this is going to be underwhelming.  We’re really good at writing, people, and it’s been really awesome to not only be a part of the site but also be a fan at the same time.  So now, the top; the cream of the crop.  Say whatever you want about the year in general (except, you know, that the state of the world was overall pleasant), but as far as music goes, it was pretty sensational.  Maybe that’s because I got to spend another year in the fortunate position of being able to sit and write about music that I love so much.  In fact, that’s almost definitely it, so let me say how humbled and thankful I am to continue to be a part of this family.  Now, on to the goods:

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Best of 2021: Rainbows in the Dark Edition

Best of 2021

You know I had to do it, so here it is.  As I’ve already said, this year was a year that was cram-packed with excellent releases, and the world of non-metal and metal adjacent was no exception, so much so that I almost considered doing another, separate honorable mentions list just for non-metal.  The only reason I didn’t is because free time and sanity are at something of an all-time-low, so you’ll forgive me if anything feels like it got left off, because, well, it did.  Still, there are plenty of worthy releases here, and if that stirs up your appetite for more, there is plenty else to be found out there.  Now, without further ado, here are my favorites, in almost no particular order.

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