Scholar of the First Sin: Hera’s Best of 2019

Best of 2019

The Dark Souls franchise may own this title, but Aldia’s got nothing on me.

Last year around this time I made a statement, hoping that I would take it easier on the album listening; however, I also said that it would be for naught, as my 2019 release calendar was looking great and I was so excited about it.

However, life has a way of kicking you in the bollocks. Continue reading

Best of 2019: Dan still likes metal, but maybe not writing?

Best of 2019

Oh look, it’s been over a month since my last post.

Related: I don’t really know if I like blog writing anymore?

Continue reading

Best of 2019: Chris’s List

Best of 2019

Fourth verse, same as the first?  Or second, or third for that matter?

This is my fourth End of Year List for Nine Circles, and the more the music changes, the more the sentiment stays the same.  With each new dance partner our hands clasp; our eyes lock and I see and hear and ask the same thing:  What does this do for me?  What does it mean?  Why this, and not something else?

I tried to spend this year answering those questions, particularly the last one.  In a year where I finally acknowledged that – while still important and cherished – metal was no longer the driving musical force in my life, I wanted to understand why the metal that I was drawn to impacted me.  What was it about the way this riff, or that vocal line, or that lyric touched me in a way maybe some other song, track, or album didn’t? Continue reading

Best of 2019: Angela's List

Best of 2019

Most of us are eager to dart into 2020 and leave 2019 in our wakes.  While I’m ready for a fresh start and a new year, I want to linger in 2019 a little longer to savor the musical releases.  Many wonderful albums were released this year which made narrowing down and ranking my top picks a challenge.  The albums that ended up on this list are albums that resonated with me—albums that I kept revisiting, I kept blasting through headphones, and kept giving me goosebumps.

I decided to pick 9 albums in honor of Nine Circles and this wonderful community that welcomed me in this year.  Let’s dive in! Continue reading

Best of 2019: Jon’s List

Best of 2019

This past year for me was spent quietly tending to personal projects and family concerns. Most of the reviews I wrote were in the first half; the second half I mostly concerned myself with releasing another Domestikwom album, starting a movie podcast with Chris, and a YouTube channel with occasional Nine Circles contributor and Qoheleth noise man Jeremy Hunt.

When I finally lifted my head above ground, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that I had actually done a good enough job of keeping up with the year’s new releases that I could put together a list I could stand behind.   Continue reading