Greeting fellow music lovers. As 2013 comes to a close, we at Lady Obscure Music Magazine would like to present our year end awards, as voted on by our beloved music group, Lady Obscure and the Metalheads. The voting process was simple, top three nominees for Album of the Year and Newcomer Band of the Year were submitted by fellow rockers and musicians alike, then they were carefully tallied by myself, a disgustingly honest fellow by all counts(just ask my Mom, she’ll vouch for me). Now, without further ado, here are the results…..
Newcomer Band of the Year
This was an interesting batch of results, with a four way tie for third place…..
Prospekt- The Colourless Sunrise– Out of Oxford, England, this group unleashed an album of nearly speechless level progressive metal, a sheer aural onslaught.
Vandroya- One– Brazilian power metallers Vandroya, led by the unbelievably voiced Daisa Munhoz, took the scene by storm with this aggressively stunning debut.
Vicinity- Awakening– Norwegian progressive metal outfit Vicinity made a serious impression with their first effort, dropping jaws of much of our staff for sure.
Semantic Saturation-Solipsistic– A prog metal project by Canadian Shant Hagopian, he brought on a bevy of talented musicians including Derek Sherinian(formerly of Dream Theater) to rock the socks off of numerous fans, including those of our dear Lady.
Persona Grata-Reaching Places High Above– Through a series of personal life events, this album bounced around the desk of Lady Obscure until falling into my lucky hands, and I couldn’t have been more pleased. A sincere and honest brand of prog rock out of Slovakia, Persona Grata unleashed a brilliant album overloaded with brilliant musicianship, writing, and stellar vocal work. A stunning debut for sure.
And our Newcomer of the Year is…..
Karnya- Coverin’ Thoughts– A runaway winner with multiple first place votes (including mine), Italian prog metal band Karnya’s debut concept album was a shocking breath of fresh air. Gritty, edgy, yet brilliantly structured, through their stellar musicianship, they announced their presence with authority, letting the music world know that a new force was here, and they were going to be one to be reckoned with.
Album of the Year
For our Album of the Year, we had a tremendous turnout, but there were three distinct leaders of the group. Some seriously awesome albums barely missed the cut, including Haken- The Mountain, Shineback- Rise Up Forgotten, Return Destroyed, and Fates Warning-Darkness in a Different Light. But these three masterpieces were clearly a step above the rest…..
Ayreon- The Theory of Everything– The master himself, Arjen Lucassen, constructed yet again another epic concept album centering on a mathematical savant and his journey towards enlightenment. With the usual bevy of brilliant musicians and vocalist, Arjen delivered an album that will stand along proudly with his many other masterpieces.
Steven Wilson- The Raven that Refused to Sing(and other stories)-The musical genius that is Steven Wilson’s haunting collection of ghost stories led off the year by taking the world by storm and turning it on its head with his brilliant album. His collection of harrowing tales set to brilliantly beautiful music will forever resound in the hearts and minds of fans worldwide.
And our Album of the Year is….
Dream Theater- Dream Theater– No real surprise here, especially with how we in general feel about Dream Theater here at Lady Obscure. But fanboy-ishness aside, the prog metal titans unleashed a beast on this one, an album taking influences from their storied 25 year career and packing it all into seventy minutes of musical insanity. Our beloved “house band” pleased fans and newcomers alike with this release, and are more than deserving of our album of the year.
And that’s it folks, a hell of a year in music, and with some of the releases we know are coming, 2014 is looking to be a brilliant year as well. We at Lady Obscure would like to extend our truly heartfelt love and gratitude to musicians and music lovers alike for being along with us for this fantastic year, and look forward to a long, metal ride together in the future.
From the Lady Herself, and all of us at Lady Obscure Music Magazine, Happy New Year!!!