2017 was another great year for music. Several well known established bands put out some really good albums to add to their already strong libraries. This list however is dedicated to the albums and EP’s that you may have missed from some up and coming bands that deserve to be heard. Honest Brutality has made a concerted effort to bring these bands to light and share them with an audience which may not be familiar with their work. So here they are in no particular order.
1) In Search of Sun: Virgin Funk Mother
Do you like catchy songs that you can sing along to? You’re in luck. These guys from London have delivered an album packed full of songs that you will want to listen to over and over. It has a little bit of everything from straight up rockers to full on funk as well as prog and metal. This is truly one of the best albums of the year.
2) 7 Mazes: Stronger in the End
Coming in from Germany is this powerful offering of hard rocking excellence. Every song on this album could be a hit on any radio station if given the chance. Superb song writing mixed with some of the best hooks that you will ever hear combine to make one hell of an album. I have probably played this album more than any other this past year. It’s hard to believe that these guys are unsigned.
3) Kill the Kong: Juggernaut
Heavy duty metal from Sweden. This band is unique in a lot of ways. Not the least of which is the use of 2 singers as well as 2 drummers. All working together in harmonious bliss. Every song is built to kick your ass in an orderly fashion. These guys bring a lot of craziness to the stage as well.
4) Silius: Hell Awakening
Once again Austria has produced a metal band that can not only write excellent metal tunes but can drink you under the table with their beer consuming abilities. This is metal the way you want it. In your face, loud, aggressive and angry. There’s no fluff here. These guys know how to get to the core of a metal tune and exploit it for all it’s worth.
5) SEA: The Grip of Time
These rockers from Denmark have found a way to take a classic rock sound and give it a modern sensibility. With one hard rocking song to the next throughout the entire album you will find yourself wanting to listen to it over and over again. This is truly one of the great albums of the year that deserves your attention. Do yourself a favor and check it out.
6) Kill For Company: This Sadness Lasts Forever (EP)
This is probably the heaviest music on the list. This foursome from the London area have managed to harness some of the most aggressive metal that you will ever hear and make you want to mosh your ass off. Since it is an EP there are only 4 songs but they are 4 very strong songs that will wear you down in short order. Warning: if you listen in your car you may be tempted to start a vehicular mosh pit.
7) Chasing Desolation: Malice (EP)
Another EP that is well worth you time and attention is Malice from Southern California rockers Chasing Desolation. With a sense for song writing that is second to none these guys have managed to put together 6 songs that will not only rock you to the core but leave you wanting more. The musicianship here is spectacular and the energy that is captured in every song is hard to replicate.
8) Backwordz: Veracity
Edgy, controversial, powerful, politically charged. All of these descriptions are true. These Texas based Rap/Rockers have put together an 18 song powerhouse. Whether or not you agree with their politics, the passion and aggressive nature of this album can not be denied. One catchy song after the other will blister your eardrums and cause you to erupt into rock n roll ecstasy.
9) Murkocet: Digging Mercy’s Grave
You want heavy, in your face, unadulterated powerful metal? Here it is. Arizona has once again proved to be the new breeding ground for some of the best metal on the planet. This groove metal ass kicker makes no apologies for it’s angst and vigor. Packed full of mosh pit monsters from top to bottom the energy provided by these guys could fuel a small town in Iowa for the entire winter.
10) Heirs of Isildur: The Crossroads Conundrum
You want different and unique? You got it! HOI has taken a different approach to the entire process of producing an album. These guys have created concept album that coincides with it’s own comic book and we as the listeners get to come along for the ride. This is a huge undertaking for any band to take on and when you consider it’s all self produced from music to comic with no help from any large corporate backing it’s that much more impressive.
Rich “Big Sloppy” Markum