Best of the rest – 2014 (part 2): re-dos and other odds & ends

Here we offer the last of Hellbound’s 2014 heavy mostly metal year-in-review coverage. We’re wrapping up with some of the older records effectively revisited last year, Bill Adam’s best vinyl picks, and some random selections highlighting things we particularly appreciated, regardless of genre.

BEST RE-DOS (Reissues, re-recordings…)

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SONATA ARCTICA, Ecliptica Revisited: 15th Anniversary Edition

I usually hate it when bands re-record their old material, often under the delusion that it’ll ultimately sound better than the original, and when it comes to Sonata Arctica’s classic debut album, that’s a record you don’t need to retouch. However, in this band’s case this re-recording was a result of their getting to know the old material once again after years of ignoring it, and in so doing they rediscovered just how good it all is, and how much fun it is for them to play. So they redid it on a whim, as a fun little snapshot of the band today compared to when they were mere kids, and not only do the new versions hold up very well, but the original spirit of Ecliptica is still there. (Adrien Begrand)

 

Best reissues (all vinyl):

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  1. The Tragically Hip – Fully Completely – (UMe)
  2. The Constantines – Shine A Light (11th anniversary reissue) – (You’ve Changed)
  3. Self – Subliminal Plastic Motives – (Fat Possum)
  4. The Beatles – The White Album (Mono) – (Universal)
  5. Underworld – Drumnobasswithmyhead – (Universal)
  6. Superdrag – Head Trip In Every Key – (SideOneDummy)
  7. Henry Mancini – The Pink Panther OST (Fiftieth Anniversary reissue) – (Legacy)
  8. Uncle Tupelo – No Depression – (Legacy)
(Bill Adams)

 

MONSTER MAGNET – Milking the Stars (Napalm Records)

Reissues are all fine and good but I don’t listen to many. Now re-imaginings on the other hand… Monster Magnet re-imagined Last Patrol as Milking the Stars. Wyndorf made good on all the “what if”s he had in mind and turn an already great album into another one. 60’s vibe, wondrous psychedelia and classic Monster Magnet are pulled together forming another galaxy in the MM universe. (Matt Hinch, seconded by Laura Wiebe)

 

SEA WITCH – As Above…So Below (Small Doses double cassette demo reissue)

Originally released digitally as two separate demo EPs earlier in 2014, this limited edition physical double reissue captures the deceptively mature heft and evocative might of this emerging Dartmouth, NS nautical doom duo. (Matthew Elliott)
www.small-doses.com/newsblog

 

Best 2014 Vinyl

  1. David Bowie – “Sue (Or A Season Of Crime)” b/w “‘Tis a Pity She was a Whore” – 10” single – (Columbia/ISO/Legacy)
  2. Sunparlour Players – The Living Proof – (independent)
  3. Tinkerbelles – Nice Asses 7” EP – (Teepeespeek Records)
  4. Community Theatre – Northern Register – (You’ve Changed)
  5. Death From Above 1979 – The Physical World – (Warner Brothers)
  6. Electric Wurms – Musik die Schwer ze Twerk EP – (Warner Brothers)
  7. Flaming Lips – With A Little Help From My Fwends – (Warner Brothers)

(Bill Adams)

 

WILD CARD PICKS

FKA Twigs, LP1 (Young Turks): Singer-songwriter Tahliah Barnett released the rarest of debut albums in 2014, one whose vision was clear and ambitious, yet phenomenally disciplined. Featuring a host of producers, it’s absolutely remarkable that LP1 is as consistent and economical as it is, but over the course of 40 spellbinding minutes she and her collaborators create a musical environment unlike anything in 2014: minimalist, but at the same time sounding rich and luxurious, making for an intoxicating blend of the murky and the seductive. Dipping its toes in electronic, trip hop, R&B, dream pop, and even dark ambient, LP1 is careful to never fully commit to one style, instead creating a quietly intense musical backdrop against which Twigs sings her confessional, often explicit lyrics. Raw yet warm, nocturnal yet vivid, this is a wildly inventive statement, and as soon as the album ends, you can’t wait to hear what she does next. It’s a record that will be talked about for years. (Adrien Begrand)

 

Lurking in the shadows is Detroit’s SLASHER DAVE with an expertly executed homage, Tomb of Horror. (Danielle Griscti)

 

I listen to a lot of stuff that could be considered “not metal”. Most of it is closer to hard rock I guess. But Any Ol’ Way by Tweak Bird is harder to label. Groovy, bluesy and catchy as the flu. The brother duo does bring some sludge flavour but I wouldn’t consider them metal. Fans of the Melvins or even Beck should be down with this. Oh! So much groove! (Matt Hinch)

 

They’re stunning. And captivating. And you must check them out if you haven’t already – The Visit. (Laura Wiebe)

Late addition:

NOCTURNAL POISONING – Doomgrass (The End): While, as noted in September by Noisey, “not for the Scruggs and Monroe purists,” the scrappy DIY passion for bluegrass displayed by former XASTHUR mastermind Scott Connor in his new acoustic project NOCTURNAL POISONING mostly overcomes the occasionally glaring technical limitations and sometimes awkward lyrics. What emerges on his latest, Doomgrass, feels like a natural progression from his kvlt pedigree, despite the cursory disparity between black metal and down home mountain pickin’ music. (Matthew Elliott)

noisey.vice.com/blog/nocturnal-poisoning-song-stream

 

Bill Adams

Bill Adams is Editor-in-Chief of Ground Control Mag.

Matthew Elliot

Matthew Elliot is a political and music writer, editor, and social media hooligan from London, ON. A lifelong, obsessive metal fanatic, he tries not to take the third person too seriously. Tries. Send promo blasts to: [email protected]

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Keep up with all Matt's exploits on Twitter @Kingdomofnoise!

Laura Wiebe

Laura is associate editor of Hellbound.ca and co-host of weekly metal show Kill Eat Exploit the Weak on CFMU 93.3 FM. She loves doom, prog, cats and basketball, believes in equity and social justice and is not cool with any form of discrimination, marginalization, harassment or oppression.