Planetmosh Review of 2012

Da da da dada da DAHHHHHHH!!!! Ladies and Gentlemen, Planetmosh is proud to present our review of 2012.  There will be tears, there will be cheers, there will be laughter, there will be pain… are we building this up too much?

Seriously though, they say a year is a long time in politics but it’s one helluva long time in metal too.  We’ve reviewed albums and gigs, interviewed countless bands (some in strange places), had a ton of fun at some of the major festivals across the UK and Europe. Yeah, it’s been a pretty damn busy 2012 for us and long may that continue into 2013.

So what is this all about?  Well, we thought it would be a wee bit of fun to let you have a look into the minds of us lot here at PM towers.  Remember though, this is just our opinion, doesn’t make us right or wrong, so don’t be too harsh on us if you disagree :)

Scotti Watson (Reviewer – Planetmosh Glasgow Chapter)

Testament - Dark Roots of the EarthWhere to begin… I started the year reviewing Unisonic and Chainfist in February to pop my cherry here at Planetmosh and from there the only way was up.  I had one of the best gigs of my life when I saw Adrenaline Mob in June and also got to interview the awesome Mike Orlando, I also heard one of the best albums of the year and probably my album of the year in Testament’s Dark Roots, then sadly had a fanboy moment during my interview with Alex Skolnich in December that definitely won’t go down as classy in the anals of history!

I had some wonderful surprises too right enough, the stunningly brutal debut from French metallers Dead Cowboy Sluts took me completely by surprise in August, as did Allegaeon‘s latest back in April that made me think perhaps I like heavier stuff more than I lead myself to believe.  On the flipside though, Man.Machine.Industry‘s great piece of industrial metal made me grin from ear to ear.  Yeah, 2012 was a great year and I’m expecting big things in 2013.

Steve Allen (Reviewer – Planetmosh Glasgow Chapter)

Incite All out WarWell, what a year 2012 has been for rock and metal.  We’ve seen some brilliant albums, kick ass tours and the festivals were unreal. This year’s releases have included brilliance from the likes of Lamb of God, KISS and Testament to name a few and in my first year here at I’ve had the pleasure of reviewing some belters. From the straight up thrash of Kill Ritual to the latin metal brilliance of Ill Niño, however, my stand out album of the year (by a long way) was the crushingly brutal All Out War by Incite.

Along with the old favourites, 2012 has seen the emergence of some brilliant new bands not least of which is Glasgow’s Afterlife and I’m tipping these boys to be HUGE in the next 12 months. My personal highlight of the year was the return of Ugly Kid Joe. The band had a stellar year, releasing EP Stairway To Hell, a highly acclaimed summer festival tour (including an appearance at Download Festival) and a tour around the UK supporting Alice Cooper before ending the year headlining the sold out Hard Rock Hell 6.

So if you’re reading this after December 21st 2012 then the world didn’t end and as a result 2013 now has a lot to live up to!

Steve Dempsey (Down the Barrel Photography – Planetmosh Dublin Chapter)

Top 5 gigs

  1. anthrax-hf1Anthrax – Academy, Dublin
  2. Twisted Sister – Graspop Metal Meeting
  3. Hell – Button Factory, Dublin
  4. Rammstein – O2, Dublin
  5. Ugly Kid Joe – Academy, Dublin

Memorable moment of the year:
The crowd at GMM singing “We’re Not Gonna Take It” during the Twisted Sister set, during the Limp Bizkit set, and all the way home. Unbridled Heavy Metal spontaneity!!!

Shock of the year: Guns N’ Roses coming on stage 20 minutes early at GMM!

Albums of the Year

  1. Testament – Dark Roots of Earth
  2. Devin Townsend – Epicloud
  3. Anathema – Weather Systems
  4. Epica – Requiem for the Indifferent
  5. Witchcraft – Legend

Ant May (London Team leader)

Gigs of the year:
A really difficult one this – seen so many great gigs that it’s hard to narrow it down to just 5, but her goes….

  1. Sunflower Jam – Royal Albert Hall – Bruce Dickinson, Alice Cooper, John Paul Jones, Brian May and more – an amazing lineup
  2. Marshall 50 years of loud – Wembley Arena – A whole host of stars doing some great collaborations
  3. Nightwish – Birmingham academy – Seriously impressive.
  4. Within Temptation – Sportspalais, Antwerp – An amazing anniversary show in this packed out arena
  5. Rammstein – Nottingham arena – Fire, fire and more fire !

sunflower jam group

Mark Ashby (Team Leader, Ireland)

The highlight of the year for me is pretty damn easy:  Planet Mosh expanding into the island of Ireland and thus heralding the real beginning of the site’s proper international growth.  It has given us the opportunity to bring many of the great bands currently busting their asses in this part of the world to wider audiences.  It’s perhaps no surprise that my top five albums of the year therefore features three Irish bands – two from the north and one from the south:

  1. sinocenceSinocence – ‘No Gods, No Masters Part One’
  2. Waylander – ‘Kindred Spirits’
  3. Lynyrd Skynyrd – ‘Last Of A Dying Breed’
  4. Celtachor – ‘Nine Waves From The Shore’
  5. Rush – ‘Clockwork Angels’

As for the best gigs of the year.  As we say over here:  feck!  I went to something like 150 shows over the course of the year, and it’s a list I’ve debated over and changed about as many times, but if I have to choose, my top five are:

  1. ThinLizzy-LimelightThin Lizzy – Belfast, Limelight – 12th December
  2. Steve Vai – Dublin, Vicar St – 4th December
  3. Ricky Warwick and Damon Johnson – Ahoghill, Diamond – December 14th
  4. Sepultura – Belfast, Limelight – 12th August
  5. Slayer – London, Alexandra Palace – 25th July

Simon Bower (Reviewer – Planetmosh North Wales Chapter)

Where do I start when summing 2012 up from my own personal perspective? So many highlights both live and on record. Album wise I’d have to pick Red Moon Architect’s glorious Doom Metal release ‘Concealed Silence’, a simply stunning piece of work and quite possibly one of the best records I’ve ever had the pleasure of listening to. It’s rare that you come across an album that leaves such a profound and meaningful mark on your life but this did.

Live wise was a bit of a no brainer for me, Metal Female Voices Fest in Belgium continues to be the worlds foremost and best gathering of female fronted Metal. This year saw Epica, Lacuna Coil and Arch Enemy deliver stunning sets, but my personal festival high was 69 Chambers, what a set and what a band.

Best Planetmosh moment? Just being part of Planetmosh, not a bad bunch of people to be a part of a team with really. Here’s to 2013, dreams of an AC/DC mini tour, and many more great Metal and Rock albums to review!

Dennis Jarman (Reviewer)

ian hunterWell here I am at the ripe old age of 49, in my 2nd year at Planetmosh and loving every bit of it. It has opened my eyes to loads of unsigned bands that I would never have heard of, I’ve had the chance to review them and been blown away by their gratitude. As regards the bigger bands, I would never in a million years thought I would be able to air my thoughts on the likes of KISS, Rush and Ian Hunter. I was lucky enough to receive a promo copy of his album When I’m President and it is my album of 2012!

Thanks to Planetmosh I was able to review the Diamond Head remaster of Lightning To The Nations and was sent an autographed copy by Brian Tatler, a band whose albums I once bought about thirty years ago. 2012 was made for me by getting the chance to do email interviews with the legendary Brian Slagel from Metal Blade and former Exodus frontman Steve Souza.  I also did my first and very nervous audio interview with Anvil drummer Robb Reiner having been asked only a few hours before. Did it all off the cuff too which was a bit nerve-wracking but Auntie Sheila kept me calm haha!

So that’s my 2012 and I’m looking forward to more of the same in 2013. Thank you to all of the team here for their help over the last 18 months! \m/

Heather Fitsell (reviewer)

zico chain albumFavourite album of 2012
Zico Chain – The Devil In Your Heart
This was the long awaited album from Zico Chain. Produced by the band themselves under difficult circumstances, it draws influence from the environment and times they found themselves in. It is one of the best debut albums I have personally heard. This is the album in my opinion, many bands dream of making.

Favourite EP of 2012
The Temperance Movement – Pride
A recommendation that came to me late one night from a friend I had not been in touch with for a while. I was blown away. I went and saw them live two weeks later and brought their EP. This is a quality recording with good artwork, that shows the musical experience of the band and the outstanding vocals of Phil Campbell.

Favourite gig of 2012
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers at the Royal Albert Hall
For almost twenty years I have wanted to see Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers. They finally returned this year after 13 years, to UK shores. I was smiling from ear to ear and singing along to my heart’s content. It was everything I hoped for and more. Not only is this my gig of 2012, this is to date, my best gig of all time.

Favourite discovery of 2012
Jake Bugg
I have personally seen this 18 year old Brit rise from selling out the 150 capacity Queen’s Head in Islington, London in March, to having two headline shows scheduled at Shepherd’s Bush Empire within 11 months of that show. He has catapulted onto the music scene in a way I have personally not seen before. There is plenty more to come from this young man and I recommend you get a ticket whilst you can still see him in a decent sized venue.

So there you have it.  Some of our thoughts, musings and feelings of the past year here on Planetmosh.  All that’s left for us to do is to wish you all a very very Happy New Year and a prosperous 2013 and we’ll see you again for more rock and metal madness.

Best Wishes from the Planetmosh team, we’ll see you in 2013 for much more of the same!

About Del Preston

So there I am, in Sri Lanka, formerly Ceylon, at about 3 o'clock in the morning, looking for one thousand brown M&Ms to fill a brandy glass, or Ozzy wouldn't go on stage that night. So, Jeff Beck pops his head 'round the door, and mentions there's a little sweet shop on the edge of town. So - we go. And - it's closed. So there's me and Keith Moon and David Crosby, breaking into that little sweet shop, eh. Well, instead of a guard dog, they've got this bloody great big Bengal tiger. I managed to take out the tiger with a can of mace, but the shop owner and his son, that's a different story altogether. I had to beat them to death with their own shoes. Nasty business really. But sure enough, I got the M&Ms and Ozzy went on stage and did a great show.