15 Songs and 15 Albums Vin Liked in 2015

2015 was a year.  A year is defined as the period of 365 days (or 366 days in leap years) starting from the first of January, used for reckoning time in ordinary affairs and also as the time a planet takes to complete a full revolution around the sun.  For more information on the dominant mainstream concept of a year, visit the Wikipedia page for the Gregorian Calendar.  Hi, I’m Vin, and you may remember me from such awful music reviews as the one posted last year, and the one before that.  As per my terms of probation, I must review my favorite and least favorite things I listened to all year, lest I be sent back to the home for the musically retarded where people legitimately enjoy the music of Adele.

Music in 2015 is still there as well, still playing.  As per the usual defined rules of this tedious, ill mannered game, there was good music and there was bad music.  Good music was good and is good, bad music was bad and is bad, black and white reasoning is a small minded and horrible way to go about subjective opinions, it’s the same old list just with another number added because reviewing 14 songs in 2015 is as stupid as black and white reasoning.  Reunion mania is still surging as strong as it ever was, there’s been some new-ish bands putting out some of their best work of their careers, and of course there’s been that shit that ain’t even worth bringing up because it was a bunch of bland fucking crap.  So here are 15 songs and 15 albums to listen to over and over and over and over and over and over and over and and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over from the year 2015.  Save your fucking apologies and appall for the comments section fuckwads.

15 SONGS TO LISTEN TO OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER

15. 7 Cutting by Aphex Twin, released on Soundcloud

Richard D. James was strong on the comeback streak after years of abandoning the Aphex Twin moniker in 2014 with the Syro album.  2015 on the other hand has proved to be the most prolific output period in Richard D. James history, with his Aphex Twin Soundcloud accounts releasing over 100 tracks this year.  The last count I heard was placing this number at over 200 across multiple accounts when I had long given up on keeping up with the insane rate of new Aphex Twin material surfacing.  So for all I know my favorite Aphex Twin song of the year is still unheard out there.  But anyway, of the 90 odd songs I did hear, one that was recommended to me and then replayed much more than the others was “7 Cutting”, which kinda comes off as a throwback in style.  It has the erratic drum machines and samples of utter chaos and some nicely abrupt changes in pace.  It’s as great as Aphex Twin has ever sounded.

14. Loathe by Primitive Man from the EP “Home Is Where The Hatred Is”

These lists are usually no stranger to metal of the slow, sludgy metallic hardcore and doom variety.  But I don’t think I’ve heard a band grind this slow and menacingly in a long, long time.  Primitive Man is a new band that I never heard of until I came across their utterly ridiculous, shock value laden 10 minute long music videos for their debut EP release.  I liked this one the most, though the one with naked obese nuns fellating guns and cutting themselves was pretty hardcore Radikult as well.  Hell these guys are bordering on being a hardcore drone band it’s so slow and disorienting.  I’m willing to bet no one reading this can make it through that entire video.

13. Rubble Kings (Dynamite On The Street) by Run The Jewels from The Adult Swim 2015 Singles Collection

This year I’m not going to waste my time spouting off a bunch of quotes from Adult Swim while drunk, but I will suggest watching the new seasons of Rick and Morty, Black Jesus and Neon Joe: Werewolf Hunter from the channel because that shit was fucking hilarious, unlike this list which so far hasn’t been funny.  You know what else isn’t funny?  El P and Killer Mike’s consistency.  New Run the Jewels is new good music, who woulda thought?  Well Meow the Jewels isn’t good music but that’s basically trolling and pandering rolled into a joke to rip people off.  On the other hand, “Rubble Kings” is a great track with some cool uses of sampling, Run the Jewels making an annoying beat work to good effect, and Killer Mike running shit as expected on his behalf.

12. King of New York by Ghostface Killah and Raekwon from “12 Reasons To Die Part II”

Another year, another project where Ghostface Killah and Raekwon are putting in way more effort and making far better music than any Wu Tang group album, this is the way of the Wu Tang these days.  Ghostface Killah throws in a nice Bill Cosby sex crime joke rhyme, which is appropriate because this bangs like Bill Cosby does with unconscious women dosed with heavy sedatives.  To compare parts 1 and 2 of this project with Adrian Younge, I’d probably say I liked the first installment more.  But this song may be my favorite yet from either project, and it even sounds like it could fit in with Only Built for Cuban Linx 2 with it’s old gangster mafioso rap style.

11. Cast the First Stone by Slayer from the album “Repentless”

Slayer are easily one of my favorite bands of all time, and having seen them live twice with the original lineup, it really saddens me but does not surprise me in the least to announce that Repentless will not be on my best albums list.  With Repentless, Slayer attempted to pull the 9/11 joke twice, their first being the hilariously coincidental release of God Hates Us All on September 11, 2001.  A hailed return to form for Slayer, God Hates Us All led to Slayer’s career revival after the awful Diabolus En Musica (which is still by far the worst Slayer album in history ever).  Repentless attempts to be Slayer’s career revival after the death of Jeff Hannemann, who wrote most of their classic material.  There are still some good songs here like Jeff Hannemann’s last song “Piano Wire”, “You Against You”, “Pride and Prejudice”, the title track and this one.  The slower plodding pace fits the general state of Slayer today.  Anyone who doesn’t like Gary Holt is dumb and has probably never heard Exodus’ music as well, he is a respectable replacement for Jeff Hannemann. Repentless could have been much, much worse than it was though, it was by means not an “A Better Tomorrow” or “Monuments To An Elegy” level shitfest like last year’s major bummers.

10. The Best Room by Modest Mouse from the album “Strangers To Ourselves”

And yet again as a long time fan who eagerly awaited the comeback of this band, it sucks to announce that Modest Mouse will not appear on my best albums of the year list as well.  Modest Mouse had very quickly become like the indie rock version of Tool in their insistence to do erratic, fan base aggravating things like remain a touring group for 8 years while cancelling tours for “recording time” that never surfaced.  This album proved to be a real mixed collection ranging all over the board, but there were good songs on it.  I particularly enjoyed “Shit In Your Cut”, “The Ground Walks With Time In A Box”, “Of Course We Know” and especially this song here, which reminds me of their older stuff the most from the album.  However, there are a lot of sleeping pills and AIDS needles on this album too.

9. Behold the Colossus by Clutch from the album “Psychic Warfare”

Clutch are just scarily consistent and always dependable for stoner rock with a very goofy lyrical bent (this time around its gore gods and ultimate men) but dammit if Earth Rocker and Psychic Warfare are their best double count since Blast Tyrant/Robot Hive Exodus.  This song is late in the album but it fucking rocks, that riff is smooth as hell, makes me feel like smoking enough blunts to make driving my car feel like piloting a UFO.  I’m probably going to see them live in a week within writing this list so their position may fluctuate, I haven’t seen them yet somehow.

8. Escape from Czarkham Asylum by Inspektah Deck, 7L and Esoteric from the album “Czarface 2: Every Hero Needs a Villain”

The second installment of the Czarface series had what is definitely their most ambitious track yet, an 8 minute long track going for the title of “Stairway to Heaven” of rap.  While it sort of feels like 3 different tracks put together, it does work as a whole as a triathalon.  I lost count of verses every time I listened to this and thought it was never going to end in a very good way.  Better than anything on the last Wu Tang record?  Of course it is.

7. Dawkins Christ by Refused from the album “Freedom”

And now it’s time to address the elephant in the room of the year for reunion mania.  Refused’s reunion album Freedom was a major disappointment, there were alright songs “366” and “Useless Europeans” and it did deliver a hell of a pair of singles in “Elektra” and especially “Dawkins Christ”.  It’s another example of using breathy, atmospheric female vocals in heavy music without sounding cheesy as hell, the riff is an absolute fucking monstrosity, and no shit it was a pre-release single  because it’s the best thing here by a long shot.  The best new Refused album in 2015 I heard was Songs to Fan the Flames of Discontent, Refused’s 1996 album I downloaded for the first time this year.  Praise the lord god is dead indeed.

6. Home Invasion by Steven Wilson from the album “Hand. Cannot. Erase”

Steven Wilson’s return to the gloomy “jam band metal” style that put Porcupine Tree on the radar for anyone in the first place is a welcome addition to the list.  The beginning build is heavy and awesome, then it goes off into some of that weird trippy prog goofball rock.  This song pulls off lyrics like  “Download sex and download god, download that shit you didn’t want”, that’s a feat for anyone.  That sounds like a rejected line from this review.  Hand. Cannot. Erase. is shit you want to download.

5.  Clandestine Ways (Krokadil Rot) by Cattle Decapitation from the album The Anthropocene Extinction

Cattle Decapitation have never failed to disappoint as long as I’ve been listening to them, and the newest album is no exception.  Anybody who doesn’t listen to this band will probably  not even be able to distinguish songs by them, but that’s just their loss, they can go be the next stabbing victim in a Cattle Decapitation mosh pit for all I give a shit.  For those who can stomach it, Cattle Decapitation is exactly what you need more of in your life.  It’s what keeps the cattle mutilation count down.  This is music for those who want unabashed brutality right the fuck now.

4. Genocide by Dr. Dre, Kendrick Lamar and Marsha Ambrosious from the album “Compton: A Soundtrack”

Easily by far the most unlikely release of the year by default, there were a ton of great collaboration tracks and the definitely notable “Talking to My Diary” solo track from the mythical new Dr. Dre.  “Genocide” is probably my favorite of them all so far though, it’s got the replay value of any of the past big hits as far as I’m concerned.  I would also make the controversial stand that it’s my favorite thing from Kendrick Lamar I heard all year including his album.  His stuff here is fucking awesome.  I don’t believe anyone ever took the prospect of new Dr. Dre material seriously until now, but we also live in the post apocalyptic world where Chinese Democracy, Deltron 3030 Part 2, countless band reunions and future top 15 album selections prove all these assumptions wrong.  Everyone’s fair game for a comeback.

3. Empire of the Clouds by Iron Maiden from the album “The Book Of Souls”

Iron Maiden can’t take no for an answer and they don’t believe that word exists in their vocabulary.  Thank fuck for it.  This is easily the most ambitious Iron Maiden has gotten in their career, a late period last hurrah for all intents and purposes.  Coming at the tail end of their 93 minute double album, “Empire of the Clouds” embodies ambition and over the top extremity in all its overwrought glory to great goddamn outcome.  While I really wouldn’t call this any better than other tracks on the album, it’s unashamed spawl alone is commendable.  Iron Maiden wanted to top on Seventh Son of a Seventh Son and Alexander the Great, and goddamn I have to give them props for giving a go at it.  This is theatrical prog metal done right, that fucking stupid ass Dream Theater double album thing that’s coming out soon will not have a fucking fraction of a percentage on this.  Remember to practice safe sex when eating pussy out there, Bruce Dickinson nearly lost his voice to cancer because of that unfortunate, fortunate fate people, eating pussy is serious business.  Empire of the Clouds is even more serious business.

2. A.M. Amnesia by Failure from the album “The Heart Is A Monster”

Failure are a band who not many knew of in their time, but Fantastic Planet grew to be a huge cult favorite.  Even Tool said they started out as a Failure ripoff band, which is hilarious, but anyway they were fucking great back in the 90s when no one gave a shit about them.   Finally they hit the reunion mania circuit last year and now we got a new album.  While chock full of classic Failure tracks that really did recall the old stuff, A.M. Amnesia is like the perfect balance of the weird poppy but grungy Failure meets the drugged out space rock side in the way that older songs like Stuck On You or Saturday Saviour did.  They did this sound a little more than “Daylight” style drugged out delusional space rock on the reunion album but I thought it was still a fucking phenomenal installment for a mostly unknown band.

1. Crossroads of Infinity by Baroness from the album “Purple”

I’ve done it, I’m drifting into a realm of limitless dimensions

Seems like another case of troll song selection.  Here’s the real thing, fuck you.

1. Cone of Shame by Faith No More from the album “Sol Invictus”

Last year when I was proclaiming Faith No More’s troll hit of a first single from Sol Invictus, “Motherfucker” as song of the year, it was in the same context as that 17 second long joke song above.  But as we all know now, Sol Invictus is no joke, Faith No More is back in business and not to be fucked with.  Their new album is a short 40 minutes of nothing but great music, and I think “Motherfucker” aside we could have gone with everything here up for grabs.  But really there were some very, very promising new Faith No More selections up to talk about and hold up high.  Cone of Shame really picks up that same old batshit fucked vibe of Faith No More of yore in a way that just rings perfect with me though.  As a proud cleric of The Faith No More Spirtual and Theological Center, you’re either with us or against us.  We’re like ISIS, only we worship at the altar of Mike Patton and bomb you if you say you hated King For A Day, Fool For A Lifetime.

The Jared Fogle Award for Song Most Likely to Offer An Underage Teenager Unprotected Sex in Exchange for a Shitty Subpar Sandwich

It’s that time again, that time to be offended and grossed out by another’s foul, foul actions in this sick world of ours.  Jared Fogle was a fat lazy tasteless piece of shit who ate too many bland, tasteless sandwiches from that dumpster meat and cheese crack empire Subway and used the cash he made from being their poster boy of “healthiness” to molest children for years.  South Park made an episode about how he had AIDS one time.  This is the sick fuck who said “I couldn’t believe it was so cheap” in response to “Is this the same website you found that 16 year old girl you that you fuck? I still can’t believe you only paid $100 for her” according to legal documents.  Those documents confirmed he was convicted of 400 child sexual abuse charges.  But 400 child sexual abuse charges aren’t as foul as the crime against humanity which I am about to showcase to your naked virgin rape ready eyes:

For those of you not willing to be victims of horrible sexual assault, that was the video for the latest single from Weezer, a horribly unaware joke doomed for hate at earshot.  What in the fuck is going on with goddamn everything in this piece of shit?  Even though it’s completely reasonable to expect nothing but mediocrity and self parody out of Weezer anymore, I really do regret ignoring their album Everything Will Be Alright In The End from 2013 until way after it came out on instinct.  It was actually listenable all the way through and had good songs, a total fluke by their standards.  But don’t worry, because here’s “Thank God For Girls” to fuck everything up and reinstate the Weezer we all knew and hated the last 10 years.  I bet even people still in the homes for the musically retarded still hate this.  It’s beyond retarded.  From the lyrics about the girl at the pastry shop making cannoli for you and your bros to eat in the woods before you get into some homoerotic ass play behind a bush, to the dumb video where some slut shoves cannoli down Rivers’ throat for 5 minutes, to the generic poppy sound and utterly uninteresting instrumental work, it’s all bullshit to the fullest, and yet another testament to how far Weezer have fallen since the days of “El Scorcho” and “Buddy Holly”.  What the fuck happened Rivers, get some goddamn sense of reality already.

…And All That Could Have Been: Honorable Mentions of the Year

This is where the albums that were good and worth a listen or a few go, they may not have clocked the list but they aren’t a total waste of time either.

Abysmal by The Black Dahlia Murder
The Blade of the Ronin by Cannibal Ox
Born In The Echoes by The Chemical Bros.
The Color Before The Sun by Coheed and Cambria
New Bermuda by Deafheaven
Shadow Of A Doubt by Freddie Gibbs
12 Reasons to Die Part II by Ghostface Killah and Adrian Younge
Infernus by Hate Eternal
Luminiferous by High On Fire
Fantasy Empire by Lightning Bolt
The Pale Emperor by Marilyn Manson
Strangers To Ourselves by Modest Mouse
Cobras and Fire: The Mastermind Redux by Monster Magnet
What Should Not Be Unearthed by Nile
Garden of Delete by OneOhtrix Point Never
The Plague Within by Paradise Lost
Frozen Niagara Falls by Prurient
Fly International Luxurious Art by Raekwon
Freedom by Refused
Repentless by Slayer
Hand. Cannot. Erase. by Steven Wilson

15 ALBUMS IN ’15 WHICH REPETITION PROVED WORTHWHILE

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