Tales from the Jugular

Staff Year End Awards for 2022!
Our Annual Year End Edition of Metal that Hit Our Radar!

By: Maximum Metal Staff
Published: Thursday, December 22, 2022
We've gathered up our thoughts on the hard rock/metal releases of 2022! Even if you really don't give a damn what any of our opinions are, there are so many releases put out in this age of do-it-yourself creation that you may see names you missed, older bands you forgot existed or unknowns to look up and sample. It's all about getting the word out and supporting the music!

Eric's 2022 Best of List
1. Soilwork - Overgivenheten
2. Parkway Drive - Darker Still
3. Queensryche - Digital Noise Alliance
4. Nightrage - Abyss Rising
5. Candlemass - Sweet Evil Sun
6. Machine Head - Of Kingdom and Crown
7. Amorphis - Halo
8. Ozzy Osbourne - Patient Number 9
9. Leather - We are the Chosen
10. Hardcore Superstar - Abrakadabra

Concerts: KSE/August Burns Red/Light the Torch. House of Blues, Orlando, FL. 2/12/22

E f'n C

Top Hard Rock/Metal Releases
The Retro branch of the metal tree has been blooming full over the last half-dozen years and it was glorious to grab fruit from the 80s era--speed, gallops, gang vocals...battle vest metal.

Album(s) of the Year:
Riot City - Electric Elite
Seven Kingdoms - Zenith
Monster Truck - Warriors
A-Z - A-Z
Live Wire - Under Attack!
Blind Guardian - The God Equation
Stray Gods - Storm the Walls

Looking Forward To New Stuff From: Metallica, In Flames

Great Moments in Metal:The return of metal fests, Billy Strings playing War Pigs in Lord of the Rings costumes, Eddie Munson dropping Master of Puppets on Stranger Things

Rediscovered Bands: WASP, Cinderella, Fifth Angel, Vicious Rumors, Nestor

Best Live Show I Attended: Welcome to Rockville 2022--KISS, Motor Sister, The Pretty Reckless, Halestorm, The Hu...

Top Picks for 2022
Amon Amarth - 'The Great Heathen Army'
Amorphis - 'Halo'
Arch Enemy - 'Deceivers'
Ashes of Ares - 'Emperors and Fools'
Bloody Hammers - 'Washed in the Blood'
Candlemass - 'Sweet Evil Sun'
Ghost - 'Impera'
Kreator - 'Hate Über Alles'
Leather - 'We Are the Chosen'
Megadeth - 'The Sick, the Dying... and the Dead!'
Nightrage - 'Abyss Rising'
Ozzy Osbourne - 'Patient Number 9'
Queensrÿche - 'Digital Noise Alliance'
Soilwork - 'Övergivenheten'
Tony Martin - 'Thorns'

Top 12 Metal Albums of 2022
Earthrise - Until We Rest Beneath The Winter Way
Author & Punisher - Kruller
Som - The Shape Of Everything
Organectomy - Nail Below Nail
Cult Of Luna - The Long Road North
Darkthrone - Astral Forest
Artificial Brain - Artificial Brain
Voivod - Synchro Anarchy
Queensryche - Digital Noise Alliance
Fallujah - Empyrean
Kreator - Hate Uber Alles
Of The Sun - A.M. Radio

Top Metal Albums of 2022
Pharmacist - Flourishing Extremities On Unspoiled Mental Grounds
Blackbraid - Blackbraid I
Crestfallen Dusk - Crestfallen Dusk
Helms Alee- Keep This Be the Way
Doldrum - The Knocking, or the Story of the Sound that Preceded Their Disappearance

Rock/Metal Albums of the Year 2022
1 Slash/Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators - 4
2 Def Leppard - Diamond Star Halos
3 Volbeat - Servant of the Mind
4 Ghost - Impera
5 Black Label Society - Doom Crew Inc
6 Alter Bridge - Pawns & Kings
7 Soilwork - Overgivenheten
8 Sabaton - The War to End All Wars
9 Amorphis - Halo
10 Shinedown - Planet Zero
11 Motionless in White - Scoring the End of the World
12 KoRn - Requiem
13 Scorpions - Rock Believer
14 SlipKnot - The End, So Far
15 Jerry Cantrell - Brighten
16 Queensryche - Digital Noise Alliance
17 Sammy Hagar & The Circle - Crazy Times
18 Lamb of God - Omens
19 Ozzy Osbourne - Patient Number 9
20 Journey - Freedom
21 Muse - Will of the People
22 Avantasia - A Paranormal Evening with the Moonflower Society
23 Megadeth - The Sick, The Dying and the Dead
24 Arch Enemy - Deceivers
25 Ice Nine Kills - Welcome to Horrorwood: Silver Scream 2

2022 was a prolific year year for new hard rock and metal. Was this due to all the bands writing during the pandemic? Who knows but there was so much to dig into this year.

Love or Hate: Ghost - Impera. Tobias Forge knows how to craft a rock song with melody. Masks and line-up changes aside, this was the catchiest rock album of the year.
Live Shows: My favorite show of the year hands down was Slash with Myles Kennedy. Myles may be the best rock vocalist in the business and Slash is still so passionate about his playing and this band. Their 4th album is also my album of the year!
Discovery: Ice Nine Kills. I was not really aware of this band before this year. Spencer Charnas and band are writing some fun, horror movie based hard rock. Radio friendly but retains an edge to it.
Best New Artist: Ok, not new, but new to me - Fit For A King. Their new album (The Hell We Create) came out late in the year so will likely make my top albums list for next year. They are really talented.
Surprise of the Year: Journey. Another divisive band but if you just listen to some of the songs on their first studio album in 11 years, there are some good tunes here. Arnel is a good vocalist - we can say that and not have to compare to Steve Perry.
Guilty Pleasure:Tears for Fears - The Tipping Point. Their first studio album in 18 years is a good one. It is mellow, but some excellent tunes and so much nostalgia!!
Non-Metal Album of the Year: Needtobreathe - Live From Bridgestone Arena. Just a great band playing at their very best.
Likely to Make Top 10 for 2023: Devin Townsend, Godsmack, Rival Sons, Disturbed, Architects and Fit For A King.
One Song for 2022: According to Spotify, my top tune of 2022 is Def Leppard - Take What You Want. A perfect album opener for one of Def Lepp's best albums ever - my #2 album of the year!
Wish for 2022: Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson get together and record some new music!!

Best Metal Albums of 2022
It's been a pretty remarkable year with regard to the sheer number of albums being released that are at least worthy of consideration for a list like this. (The creative buildrup made possible and even necessary by the much-cited pandemic being an obvious factor, even two years later.) Therefore, this list is even more arbitratry than usual, and I will no doubt find myself coming up with several perfectly awesome releases that I will feel should have made the cut. Anyway, here are my current top 20 of the year, as of this writing, plus some other stuff I found noteworthy.

Messa: Close
Dreadnought: The Endless
Caustic Casanova: Glass Enclosed Nerve Center
Brutus: Unison Life
Voivod: Synchro Anarchy
E-L-R: Vexier
The Otolith: Folium Limina
Somali Yacht Club: The Space
MWWB (Mammoth Weed Wizard Bastard): The Harvest
Iron Kingdom: The Blood of Creation
Hammers of Misfortune: Overtaker
Forlesen: Black Terrain
Elder: Innate Passage
Helms Alee: Keep This Be The Way
Sigh: Shiki
Eight Bells: Legacy of Ruin
Aptera: You Can't Bury What Still Burns
Mountaineer: Giving Up The Ghost
Satan: Earth Infernal
Maneating Orchid: Hive Mind

Noteworthy Metal EP's of 2021:
Moths: Space Force
Coma Hole: S/T
Crone Visions: Devour
RebelMatic: Mourning Dove
Lightmaker: Static Arrow

Best Not-So-Metal Albums:
Infinien: Beyond The Veil
Gggolddd: This Shame Should Not Be Mine
Veldune: S/T
Mamalarky: Pocket Fantasy
Mitski: Laurel Hell

Great Live Shows Seen:
Elder, Belzebong, Dreadnought @ The Middle East, Cambridge, MA
Slift, You Said Strange, Blue Manic @ Sonia, Cambridge, MA
Vio-Lence, Coroner, Exciter, Lich King @ The Middle East, Cambridge, MA
Porcupine Tree @ MGM Music Hall at Fenway, Boston, MA
Mercyful Fate, Kreator, Midnight @ MGM Music Hall at Fenway, Boston, MA

New Talent To Watch:
Ealdor Bealu
Sisters of Suffocation

Deaths in 2022 (from Wikipedia):
January 4 - Andrzej Nowak, guitarist of TSA, died from a long-term illness at the age of 62.
January 10 - Burke Shelley, vocalist and bassist of Budgie, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 71.
January 10 - Gerard Drouot, promoter of numerous rock and metal bands including Deep Purple and Alice Cooper, died from leukemia at the age of 69.
January 20 - Michael Lee Aday, singer and actor better known as Meat Loaf, died from COVID-19 complications at the age of 74.
January 25 - Fredrik Johansson, former guitarist of Dark Tranquillity, died from cancer at the age of 47.
January 26 - Kit Woolven, producer and engineer for albums by numerous rock and metal bands including Thin Lizzy, UFO, Cradle of Filth, Tony Iommi, Cathedral, and Steelheart, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 71.
February 1 - Jon Zazula, co-founder of Megaforce Records, died from complications of chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and osteopenia at the age of 69.
February 6 - Bruce Greig, former guitarist of Misery Index and Dying Fetus, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 54.
February 10 - Roman Kostrzewski, vocalist of Kat & Roman Kostrzewski and former vocalist of Kat, died from cancer at the age of 61.
March 8 - Joe Moore, former drummer of Blood Feast, died from undisclosed reason at the age of 55.
March 22 - Jasyon Holmes, former vocalist and guitarist of Eso-Charis and former vocalist of The Handshake Murders, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 42.
March 24 - Didier Severin, former vocalist of Knut, died from undisclosed reasons.
March 25 - Taylor Hawkins, former session drummer of Coheed and Cambria, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 50.
April 5 - Adam Whited, former bassist of King Conquer, died from undisclosed reasons.
April 12 - Ronnie Deo, former bassist of Incantation, died from undisclosed reasons.
April 26 - Randy Rand, bassist of Autograph, died from undisclosed reasons.
April 30 - Gabe Serbian, drummer of The Locust and Head Wound City, former drummer and guitarist of Cattle Decapitation and former vocalist of Dead Cross, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 44.
May 1 - Ric Parnell (also known as Mick Shrimpton), former drummer of Spinal Tap, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 70.
May 4 - Howie Pyro, former bassist of Danzig, died from complications due to COVID-related pneumonia at the age of 61.
May 11 - Trevor Strnad, vocalist of The Black Dahlia Murder, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 41.
May 24 - Guillaume Bideau, former vocalist of Mnemic and Scarve, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 44.
May 30 - Henrik "Hempo" Hilden, former drummer of John Norum, Don Dokken and Glenn Hughes, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 69.
June 3 - Lohy Fabiano, vocalist and bassist of Rebaelliun, died from cardio-respiratory arrest at the age of 44.
June 5 - Alec John Such, former bassist of Bon Jovi, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 70.
June 19 - Brett Tuggle, former keyboardist of David Lee Roth, died from cancer at the age of 70.
July 1 - Andrew LaBarre, former vocalist and guitarist of Impaled and Ghoul, died from ALS at the age of 43.
July 5 - Manny Charlton, founding member and former guitarist of Nazareth, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 80.
July 24 - Bob Heathcote, former bassist of Suicidal Tendencies, died from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident at the age of 58.
July 27 - Kaleb Luebchow, drummer of War of Ages, died from undisclosed reasons.
July 29 - Michael Bloodgood, bassist of Bloodgood, died from a hemorrhagic stroke.
August 3 - Nicky Moore, former vocalist of Samson, died from Parkinson's disease at the age of 75.
August 15 - Steve Grimmett, vocalist of Grim Reaper, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 62.
August 19 - Ted Kirkpatrick, drummer of Tourniquet, died from idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis at the age of 62.
August 22 - Stuart Anstis, former guitarist of Cradle of Filth, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 48.
September 7 - Dave Sherman, vocalist of Earthride and former bassist of Spirit Caravan and The Obsessed, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 55.
September 14 - David Andersson, guitarist of Soilwork, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 47.
October 24 - Paul Stoddard, vocalist of Diecast, died from undisclosed reasons.
November 6 - Daniel Fawcett, former guitarist of Helix, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 52.
November 8 - Dan McCafferty, former vocalist of Nazareth, died from undisclosed reasons at the age of 76.
November 28 - Mike Clement, guitar tech for Tony Iommi and Motorhead, died from undisclosed reasons.
December 8 - Stian "Ben Hellion" Andreassen, former guitarist of Nocturnal Breed, died by suicide.

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