Music Makes Miserable Monday Mornings More Manageable

Good morning, Readers!

I hope you are doing well today. Personally, I’m really not sure yet, really not quite conscious enough to even have a general positive or negative impression of today, so far.

But regular visitors here might be familiar with my often-stated opinion — an opinion that I understand is a bit controversial and unconventional (although I think many people secretly agree with me, but I just happen to be the only one brave enough to come right out and say it) — that Mondays completely suck.

But fortunately, there’s also a correllary to that particular theory, which is that Mondays suck just a little bit less when there’s good music, so I’ve found a few songs I’d like to share with you on this Monday morning, to try and ease the pain somewhat!

 
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In Case You Missed It: Visions – Home

VisionsHome (Basick Records, 18 July 2011).

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Dear Reader, I have a confession to make.

I know this has the potential to forever diminish your opinion of me as a music critic, as a metalhead, and perhaps even as a person, but it’s something I need to get off my chest. 

Here goes… I’m just not that into Dillinger Escape Plan.  I never have been, and to be honest, I fail to understand why this band is held in such universally high regard by critics and fans alike, just as I fail to understand the majority of the music they make.

I accept that there are surely listeners out there who thrive on such frenetic chaos and see a complex beautiful sense of order in what appears to be only random madness to my simple ears.  But on the other hand, I expect that there must be some like-minded souls out there, nodding in agreement as they read these words, but afraid to ever speak publicly for fear that (like in the case of the Emperor’s New Clothes) they would be ridiculed by the others who DO get it (or at least who claim to).

Anyway, the reason this discussion is sort of relevant stems from my decision to listen to Peterbourian band Visions‘ debut LP Home, which was released earlier this year.  Since they are a relatively new band (formed in 2009), and given that this is their first album, I didn’t really know what to expect beyond what is written in the official press release and some other advertisements I’ve seen.

First, we have the fact that they had been signed by UK label Basick Records (and the fact that the album itself was mixed and mastered by members of labelmates Monuments and Chimp Spanner), which sort of hints at some proggy/techy/melodic-y leanings.  But at the same, I kept seeing that infamous marketing phrase “for fans of…” and in every case, it seems to include Dillinger Escape Plan.

Well, if any of that made me feel apprehensive at all, I decided to plow ahead anyway (or I guess I should say “plough ahead” since we’re talking about a British band here), and let me just say, I’m really glad that I did.

Keep reading after the jump for some more in-depth analysis, plus your chance to listen to some of the songs (including one available for free download)…

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Get ‘em While They’re Hot: Basick Records Offering a Free 2011 Sampler!

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Okay, I realize it isn’t 2012 yet, and I’m pretty sure Basick Records knows it too, but this sampler represents a cross-section of the British prog-tech-metal label’s roster going into the new year.  Several of the tracks here are swiped from Basick bands’ latest (i.e., 2011) releases, including “Oceans” from Visions‘ debut album Home (of which, coincidentally, I am in the middle of writing a review), and several others; however, also included are sneak peeks at a couple of the label’s recent signings who haven’t yet put out a record through Basick, such as Blotted Science and Skyharbor.

Best of all, it’s absolutely free!  Check out the announcement on Basick’s website  for additional information.  Or if you’re really impatient, you can just skip on over to Amazon to grab a copy.  However, if you aren’t able to download MP3s from Amazon.co.uk due to country restrictions, they have also made it available to download via their Bandcamp page (just see the embedded widget below).   Also free!  You can’t lose, either way.