Interesting shuffle this week in that it hit all newer material.
Doyle, “Mark of the Beast.” From the album Abominator (2013). Doyle, former guitarist for The Misfits, has released a surprisingly strong solo album that bears little resemblance to his former band beyond the horror imagery of the tunes. The music here is far more driven by metal and thrash than the punk of The Misfits. It’s good stuff, though.
Iced Earth, “V.” From the album Dystopia (2011). I continue to have mixed feelings about this record that probably partially stem from the singer upheaval of recent years. This is one of the better tracks from the record and one where Stu Block’s voice isn’t overly processed.
Flotsam and Jetsam, “Rabbit’s Foot.” From the album Ugly Noise (2013). One of my favorite tracks from one of my favorite albums of this year. The song tells the tale of a pretty miserable bastard trying to become a better, happier person, and it’s a message that rings true in my own life right now. There’s also a great chorus hook.
Dash Rip Rock, “Tugboats.” From the album Black Liquor (2012). Bill Davis keeps churning out good albums in relative obscurity outside his home state of Louisiana, but this is another great record. “Tugboats” is on the more jangly, alternative rock side of Dash’s sound. I prefer the rowdier, more raucous tunes, but it’s still a great song. Sorry I couldn’t find a version online.
Volbeat, “The Hangman’s Body Count.” From the album Outlaw Gentlemen and Shady Ladies (2013). This record has been one of the biggest disappointments of the year for me. I’ve followed Volbeat’s career since I first heard “Sad Man’s Tongue,” my personal favorite track from their catalog, and really looked forward to this one. Outside of a few tunes, though, it just hasn’t hit me the way their past work has. This is one of those few tunes, though, that includes many of the diverse elements that made me like the band in the first place – a little bit of country twang, a lot of Metallica-influenced metal and a great, memorable chorus.