November 2003 Archives

Johnny Cash: American III - Solitary ManCD, American Recordings 2000

Track list: I Won't Back Down - Solitary Man - That Lucky Old Sun (Just Rolls Around Heaven All Day) - One - Nobody - I See a Darkness - The Mercy Seat - Would You Lay With Me (In a Field of Stone) - Field of Diamonds - Before My Time - Country Trash - Mary of the Wild Moor - I'm Leavin' Now - Wayfaring Stranger

I'm going back with these American albums. Number three is just as good as number four. None of the songs really compares to "Hurt", but then again, few do. Cash's take on "The Mercy Seat" is first-class, though. The old man in black is doing a good work on this album, and I don't have to doubt a bit before giving this album four stars: ****

The Forsaken: Traces of the PastCD, Century Media 2003

Track list: A Time to Die - One More Kill - Acid with Acid - Piece by Piece - Glitches Will Tell - Traces of the Past - Serpent's Tongue - God of Demise - Massive Machinery - The Empire - First Weapon of Choice - Blackened

If you're into fast and technical death metal, here's a treat for you. The Forsaken is from Sweden, as many good death metal bands tend to be. However, I'm not completely thrilled. Sure, they play fast, technically brilliant and brutal music, but something's missing. There's little that would elevate them from the unfortunate mediocrity. It's certainly good album, but very good - no. The brightest sides of the album are not by the band themselves: the album cover by Niklas Sundin is beautiful and the album-ending Metallica cover, Blackened, is just great. ***

Jag Panzer: Decade of the Nail-Spiked Bat2xCD, Century Media 2003

Track list: Reign of the Tyrants - Eyes of the Night - The Church - Metal Melts the Ice - Forsaken - Fallen Angel - Battle Zones - Warfare - Tower of Darkness - Licensed to Kill - Generally Hostile - The Watching - She Waits - Edge of Blindness - Spirit Suicide - Iron Shadows - Black Sunday - Symphony of Terror - Death Row - The Crucifix

Jag Panzer hails from Colorado, US but their music is straight from the 80's UK. Heavy metal, in the best British vein. This double album compiles twenty rare and old songs, rerecorded for our listening pleasure. If you're not familiar with Jag Panzer (as I guess many Finnish metal heads aren't) and you like British heavy metal, this album is a good purchase. I suppose Jag Panzer fans will find these songs interesting, especially since they've been rerecorded so the sound quality will beat the bootlegs. ****

Invocator: Through the Flesh to the SoulCD, Scarlet 2003

Track list: Intro - Through the Flesh to the Soul - Writhe in Spit - On My Knees - Flick It On - Infatuated I Am (Speak to Me) - There Is No Savior - The Chemistry of Restlessness - Under the Skin - Fire Cleanses All - Sand Between the Teeth

I used to have one of Invocator's earlier albums, but then I got bored with it and sold it. Their latest album will probably go the same way. It's rough trash metal, allright, but dead boring, really. They've been gone for seven years, but still sound the same as before. This doesn't impress me, but then again, trash metal hasn't been my thing before. It isn't now, either. The album cover is pretty cool, though. **

Cash, Johnny: Murder

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Johnny Cash: MurderCD, Sony Music 2000

Track list: Folsom Prison Blues - Delia's Gone - Mister Garfield - Orleans Parish Prison (live) - When It's Springtime in Alaska (It's Forty Below) - The Sound of Laughter - Cocaine Blues (live) - Hardin Wouldn't Run - The Long Black Veil - Austin Prison - Joe Bean - Going to Memphis - Don't Take Your Guns to Town - Highway Patrolman - Jacob Green - The Wall

I used to say I like everything except country'n'western. Well, here I am, listening to country and enjoying it. Times they are a-changing. Johnny Cash is the man, however, and this collection of songs focused on murder and death is rather interesting and works well with Nick Cave's Murder Ballads. There are few oddball songs, a healthy dose of humour and plenty of death. There's one song that's previously unreleased in the US, so it's probably not the best collection for Cash veterans. Newer devotees with a murderous bent (like me) will, however, enjoy this one. ****

CMX: Aion

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CMX: AionCD, EMI Finland 2003

Track list: Pirunnyrkki - Sielunvihollinen - Melankolia - Fysiikka ei kestä - Palvelemaan konetta - Kuoleman risteyksestä kolme virstaa pohjoiseen - Kyyn pimeä puoli - Sivu paholaisen päiväkirjasta - Nahkasiipi - Ensimmäinen saattaja - Hautalinnut

Brilliant. It's that simple. Aion is a really good album. Instead of plain rock, they've taken another step towards progressive rock and other trickery. And it sounds good! There are very beautiful melodies, strange effects and heavy guitars. Works like a charm. The theme is somewhat devilish, which suits me fine. "Hautalinnut" is a brilliant song, and there are others - it's not an album full of hit singles, but full of good, quality songs. *****

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