Upon beginning a new year, we here at Demonbit would like to pay homage to the year past. As such, over the next month each member of the Demonbit cast will be publishing a eulogy to the year 2016; complete with the best albums of the year and other things each member deems notable.
Moonsorrow's Jumalten Aika teaser is so perfect that it gets a special commendation. It's enticing, mysterious, contains enough audio and video to make your pants wet, doesn’t suffer from over or under-production, and it isn’t a fucking lyric video! I must have watched it over 30 times on release and I still watch it on occasion to this day despite owning the album.
Best Album Release(s):
Moonsorrow – Jumalten aika
Once again they released another album on par with their previous works, that is to say the best fucking thing ever to grace my eardrums.
Vektor – Terminal Redux
Again, another band releases another work on par with their previous releases, and its absolutely amazing. When you're great, you don't have to reinvent the wheel every time, you just need to keep doing what you're doing. It's incredibly disappointing to hear about three members leaving, but hopefully we'll see more great metal in the same vein from them in the future.
Best Album Buy of 2016:
Forlorn – Forlorn
Found this little gem early in the year. Being from 1996 it celebrates its 20th birthday this year. I had never heard of the band before this random buy but now I can't imagine not hearing it. This is the only album released by the band that so clearly fits within the viking metal genre, but what's impressive about it is the fact that it clearly exhibits a sound that will later come to be known as pagan metal in the same vein as Moonsorrow and other European pagan bands. Forlorn's second album continued with some of the same sound but changed thematic elements, but by the third album they weren’t even in the same genre; leaving this first album as a gem that you aren’t likely to hear about.
Most Noteworthy News:
Obviously the news of Agalloch's breakup rocked the metal news scene. Personally it's a disappointment, but I'm glad it happened. Too many good bands live long enough to watch their reputation go to shit because they feel forced to release new material long after the inspiration is gone. If the band felt it was time, then I agree it was time.
Favorite Festival of 2016:
This shithead can't afford such a life-altering journey, so I don't know if it was a great show or not, but based on the lineup this Ragnard Rock Festival 2016 looked too be the best pagan metal festival of the year and possibly the past several years.
Favorite Attended Concert:
Luca Turilli's Rhapsody and Primal Fear co-headlining North America. I'm not a big fan of power metal, but both these bands were extremely on point and it was a great show. I'd go to a Primal Fear show again anytime.
Binderune and Nordvis released this limited edition shirt commemorating their “Northern Alliance”, deeply regret not ordering a second to chop-up and use as a back patch. It perfectly represents Northern Michigan, leaving me to wonder how simmilar Sweden may be.
This “Mediterranean Meatball Soup” recipe is fucking great; no shit, try it.
Favorite TV Series:
Easy fucking answer, The Grand Tour. No, not X-Files. GT is over the top, high gear, scripted comedy with some stuff about cars mixed in.
Netflix moving from just hosting shows to actually producing their own has been a huge win for the viewer. Perhaps the best movie of the year is Netflix's Beasts of No Nation; a non-withholding look at the 1980's African child mercenary from the perspective of one.