31 December 2006

Headbangers Ball 2006 recap special

Yesterday at a friends house who had Direct TV (I don't even have cable/satellite at home, I watch TV analogue atenna & record TV with my VCR), I was watching part of the "Best of Metal Videos 2006" special on MTV2. I started with Avenged Sevenfold's "Seize the Day", which was #8 out of the top 15. The evening before yesterday, Nikki Blakk, the DJ at local rock station KSAN-FM "107.7 the Bone" claimed that countdowns were for "Casey Kasem and all that pop crap". Yeah right, Jamey Jasta (host of MTV2's Headbanger's Ball) seemed more open-minded. Plus, given that he is a VJ at an MTV network, and MTV has the contriversial maintsream countdown show Total Request Live, then it's justified. Oh well. Anyway, it took me a while to get used to "Seize the Day" by A7X, given that their newest CD, City of Evil, strays them a bit from their metalcore roots in their earlier CD's Sounding the Seventh Trumpet and Waking the Fallen. Currently, the A7X song I bang to is "Unholy Confessions", from the MTV2 Headbangers Ball, Vol. 2 album. Anyway, here's what I think of the next top videos that were played on the Headbangers Ball yesterday, based on votes at MTV2.com:
7. Unearth "Giles" (4/5) - don't really care for the video, but the song was intense and banging, with crushing gutiars and lightning-fast drumming.
6. All That Remains "This Calling" (5/5) - the video depicts a woman in stress, accompanying this dark dramatic song with a catchy guitar lead.
5. As I Lay Dying "The Darkest Nights" (5/5) - who cares if their a Christian band? At least their not untalented posers like Jars of Clay or Kutless! This video rocks, with AILD's usual crushing guitars and fast-paced drumming, with religious themes proving that not all heavy metal music has to be secular or Satanic.
4. Dragonforce "Operation Ground and Pound" (2/5) - although Dragonforce has talented guitarists and drummer, they fail to put all their talent to work, as they play all their songs with the usually similar fast-paced structure and BPM with little variety, and their vocalist, Herman Li, has a bothersome high-pitched voice that lessens the appeal of the song. I'm not too crazy for power metal, so I recommend this only for die-hard power metalheads.
3. Powerman 5000 "Wild World" (4/5) - Good video, good alt-metal track from the band of Spider, who is Rob Zombie's brother.
2. Atreyu "Ex's and Oh's" (4/5) - Atreyu rocks with this video and screamo track. Forget regular emo like Panic at the Disco, which I consider poser pop punk.
1. Dir en grey "Saku" (3/5/5) - Whoa, I'm pretty surprise that a Japanese rock band would get the best metal video of 2006. I couldn't really understand the lyrics, but I know that this band has good musicianship, but the vocalist's goth look sorta crepps me out.

So overall i thank those who voted on mtv2.com and I hope that HBB will have a good 2007 season as it had in 2006. meanwhile, you can watch this mentioned ep, as well as past eps, on hbb.mtv2.com.

In other news, I just looked up the Best Metal Performance nominees for the 2007 Grammy Awards, and they are:
- Lamb of God "Redneck" (4/5) - Still a good LOG track despite being on hard rock radio playlists in Denver and San Francisco. I first heard this song on listening to Denver-based hard rock radio station KBPI. The video is also pretty humourous. However, I know heavier LOG songs.
- Mastodon "Colony of Birchmen" (4/5) - I was just listening to a 30-sec clip of this on iTunes, it sounds good, and Mastodon's good too with their unique sludge/progressive metal sound.
- Ministry "Lies, Lies, Lies" (3/5) - Decent death metal song, but the chorus is repetitive, and Ministry isn't really that special.
- Slayer "Eyes of the Insane" (5/5) - The best song of the bunch. This song is about the War in Iraq. It basically points the "eyes" to President Bush and Tom Araya shows his angst against the War in Iraq for all the deaths and such. I hope this song wins, given it's political influence.
- Stone Sour "30/30-150" (4/5) - Good track from Corey Taylor's side-project from Slipknot. Unlike most of the other tracks on Stone Sour's new CD, which are practically slower and sound more "hard rock" oriented (think Metallica's Load and Reload), this track is Slipknot-reminiscent.

Happy new year everyone!

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