Best of 2022: Ian’s Picks

Best of 2022

And so we’ve arrived at the big one, all preambles aside and sufficiently digested.  These are the albums that stuck with me the most throughout 2022, and all of them hold their own special place in my heart, no matter what spot they occupy.  I would say this list is somewhat in order.  The top three are definitely the top three, although overall order is somewhat subjective and highly dependent on what I most recently listened to out of these picks, but rest assured that they are all superior examples of the music that came out over the previous twelve months.  We had no shortage of great albums, and 2023 is already looking to be another year of great releases.  So as we say goodbye to 2022 and look forward to the bright future, let’s take a look back on the best of the best, at least that I have found.

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Album Review: Woods of Desolation — “The Falling Tide”

Woods of Desolation - The Falling Tide

I actually told myself the last review I wrote for the site was going to be the last new album I would review this year.  Not for any grim or tragic reason, it’s just list season, I told myself I was going to start early and focus on that instead of scrambling to get them in like I always do.  But then, of course, there is a new Woods of Desolation album mucking up my well-thought-out plans.  I couldn’t pass up this chance though, and I’m relieved that I didn’t.  I knew my year end list wouldn’t be safe from The Falling Tide, and I was right and then some.

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Initial Descent: December 4 – 10, 2022

Woods of Desolation

As Santa preps his brood for the impending travels, the new release lists will be shorter and shorter as we near the last week of 2022. Now, that doesn’t mean quality will suffer per se, but we shall see. Moving on, who hasn’t caught the new single from Metallica yet? Good lord go do that now if you haven’t. Alright then, this week we’ve got a hearty mix up top with black metal from Woods of Desolation, death metal from Ploughshare, and power metal from Arryan Path. And, of course, several more in the list that follows. Go check them out and enjoy. See you here throughout the week.

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CANTO: Woods of Desolation, Creeper, In Flames, and More


The start of another week. But at least the Red Wings notched a few wins this past weekend.

  • Since I live in the mountains now, let’s start with some atmospheric black metal. Woods of Desolation premiered a new track today titled “Illumination”. That’s the third single taken from The Falling Tide, their new album which drops on September 9 through Season of Mist.
  • Moving in a bit of a hardcore direction next, we have Creeper. Their new single, “Ghost Brigade”, is the first material released through Spinefarm. Sex, Death & The Infinite Void dropped in 2020, so we’ll keep an eye out for new album announcements in the months ahead.
  • The new Drowse LP, Wane Into It, is out this coming Friday through The Flenser. As such, check out “Three Faces (Cyanoacrylate)” over at Chorus. There’s an interview there worth reading as well.
  • There’s some real hype surrounding Foregone, the upcoming new In Flames album. So with that in consideration, we’ll tie up our Monday with the new video for “Foregone Pt. 2”. It’s a different vibe than the other singles we’ve heard, but that is definitely not a bad thing. As a reminder, that album is out on February 10 through Nuclear Blast.

“Ein Bier… bitte.”
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The Nine Circles Playlist Vol. 253 (10.15.2022)

For the last five days I’ve been trapped, sequestered in this tiny 9’X12′ space not because I’m sick, but because I’m the only one not sick. After more than two and half years my entire family have fallen ill to the COVID, and I attribute my still (reasonably) healthy body to the massive amounts of metal sliding into my brain pan. May this, the 253rd edition of the Nine Circles Playlist, keep you free from illness as well.1

We’re kicking things off with some Rhythm of Fear, whose brand of thrash has my old man bones quaking with nostalgic joy. From there we have a cut from the recent EP by Asarhaddon which hits that atmospheric black metal button I thought I had tucked away for a while now. Elsewhere the crew is pushing some great stuff, including new cuts from a slew of great bands, including Lamentations, Lost in Kiev, Exhumed, Distant, A Pregnant Light, Woods of Desolation, Envy, and frickin’ Blink-182, which is a big ol’ blast of fun. There’s even more surprises in store, but I don’t want to give away the whole store, you know?

Get listening. Stay safe. See you next week.

Chris

1 Listening to copious amounts of metal shouldn’t be the only thing used in the fight against disease. Use your brain, get vaccinated, and maybe wash those hands a little more often, ya filthy animals.