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Alfred 01-05-2009 04:06 PM

The Alfred Top 25
This list is severely out of date. Only read if you want to see what my taste was like 6 short months after moving out of the "music noob" stage.

Alfred 01-05-2009 08:35 PM

25. Cancer Bats "Birthing The Giant" (2006)
What it is: Heavy punk rock
Favorite track: "French Immersion"

I don't really know where to start with Cancer Bats. Their sound blends the heaviness and aggressiveness of metal with the simplicity and energy of punk rock, all with a southern edge. Birthing The Giant is an impressive debut from the Bats, with big metallic riffs, crazy lyrics, and amazing energy. The purpose here is clear, and that purpose is fun.

For a band with a complete lack of singing, Cancer Bats have hooks coming out their fingernails, and here it seems to be the lyrics, and Liam Cormier's aggressive vocals definitely suit the sound. Simple, yet effective lines such as "Let's do this!" from French Immersion or "We are the ones who'll die!" from Golden Tanks make you want to yell right along with him.

Instrument-wise, the Cancer Bats are fairly minimalistic. But this doesn't mean that you won't find hooks in their instrumentals. Often times at the end of a verse or chorus, they'll thrown in a little riff, usually played by both the bassist and the guitarist. The lack of singing also forces you to notice the instruments more, how they change the mood and feel of the song.

This album isn't brilliant, groundbreaking, and has no diversity at all, but it's energetic, and intense, and that's what I look for in a modern punk rock album. "Let's do this!" has become something of a catchphrase with me and one of my Cancer Bats-listening friends. What I like about Birthing The Giant is how simple, yet effective it is. It's like The Ramones all over again.

Listen to it, let it take you for a wild ride.

Piss Me Off 01-06-2009 07:46 AM

Y'know as much as i love Hail Destroyer i still haven't got this yet. It's that old cliche, too much music, too little time.

Double X 01-06-2009 07:56 AM

I think you have posted that video before...but this looks interesting, even if the video is just some guy riding a bike.

Sneer 01-06-2009 08:05 AM

Quite awful, but i await your next entry with some sense of intrigue

FireInCairo 01-06-2009 08:13 AM

Not to my taste at all, but goodluck.

jackhammer 01-06-2009 08:13 AM

That sounds more Metal to me personally and not my thing but keep it up alfred as your posts and tastes for your age are mature.

Alfred 01-06-2009 02:08 PM

I do use the term 'punk rock' quite loosely. Whether it's metal or hardcore punk (I say it's both) is quite disputable.

Thanks for the comments so far. I'll try to get the next one up real soon.

And if you're interested, some honorable mentions:
Tom Waits "The Heart Of Saturday Night"
Every Time I Die "Gutter Phenomenon" or "The Big Dirty"
Envy "Insomniac Doze"
Fu Manchu "California Crossing"
Johnny Truant "In The Library Of Horrific Events"
The Mars Volta "De-Loused In The Comatorium"
Rage Against The Machine "The Battle Of Los Angeles"
Ramones "Ramones"

FaSho 01-06-2009 02:12 PM

Sweet Jesus i am looking forward to this. I LIKED Birthing The Giant, and a lot of things you've reccomended to me. Hope to see a few more in the countdown

Alfred 01-06-2009 02:44 PM

24. Asian Dub Foundation "Rafi's Revenge" (1998)
What it is: Jamaican music meets electronica and hip hop?
Favorite track: "Naxalite"

Asian Dub Foundation is a band I found out about from a video game, and this video game was Need For Speed: Underground. But this was years ago. It wasn't until after seeing Urban mention them in one of his posts that I remembered them and decided to give them a shot. Jackhammer told me to get this album, and what a great recommendation that was.

I will skip the genre lecture, because I don't know what it is exactly myself. Rafi's Revenge is a hard album to pin down on one genre. They seem to be quite the band to gather influences and put them all together. A wide variety of instruments are used here to create an extremely interesting sound that defies any classification.

The first track, Naxalite focuses on a more energetic sound, opening with a riff that can only be described as electricity in musical form, and becoming a sort of techno-world-rap song, it gets me pumped up every time. Black White is a song that celebrates our multicultural society and slams racism. You'll find some songs that lean more towards an electronic sounds, and you'll find your more Jamaican-style stuff. In the end, it's very satisfying.

Asian Dub Foundation's focus seems to be one of peace and acceptance, and even the instrumental aspect seems to compliment their philosophy. It's definitely a rewarding listen, and I encourage anyone who hasn't listened to try it. The melodies are catchy, the instrumentation is diverse, and end product is a kickass album.

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