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BEST OF 2014

mark taylor

mark taylor

It's been another hectic year where yours truly managed to attend just under 200 gigs in 2014 which hasn't been good news for my liver. There have been many highlights and I would be here for the whole of next year telling you about it, however here's a few that may have escaped general attention.

Best New Band

I shall give that honour to the Jim Stapley Band. Here is a talent that is going largely unnoticed and that's a real shame because Stapley has worked with some of the most seasoned musicians over the past few years. His mature approach and song writing abilities are highly evident on his debut album 'Long Time Coming' which is full of top notch quality tunes. Fans of Temperance Movement or Rival Sons will love it. Check out my review by clicking here.

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Best Band of the Year

For one reason or another the most talked about band this year, and especially the past few months, has been AC/DC. With the sad retirement of Malcolm Young with dementia, many fans were left pondering whether the band could still deliver a quality album without one of their main song writers. 'Rock Or Bust' proved that the band still know how to roll with the rock.

With the bizarre antics of drummer Phil Rudd getting AC/DC some unexpected extra publicity, the Aussie rockers were without doubt the most talked about band this year. The fact that their stadium dates for next year sold out in under a hour proved that AC/DC are still the biggest heavy rock band on the planet. Click here for my review of AC/DC's 'Rock Or Bust'.


Album Of The Year

It would be nice to award this to a new young emerging artist like Jim Stapley or Electric River who both released albums high up on my list but the biggest surprise was Canadian veterans Helix with 'Bastard Of The Blues'. Long forgotten on these shores, Helix returned with an album full of uplifting rocking tunes full of vibrancy. Would love to see Helix back on UK soil. Check out my review for Helix' 'Bastard Of The Blues' by clicking here.

Single of the Year

It's AC/DC yet again with 'Play Ball'. Sounds great at home, on the radio, at a disco, at work and no doubt live at their shows next year. A clever ditty that will ensure it'll be played at sporting events for many years to come.


Gig Of The Year

Wow - this was a hard one as there's been so many this year and not all the great gigs I've attended this year would normally appeal to readers of MetalTalk but one value for money package that stood out was Foreigner with a supporting cast of Europe and FM. A night full of quality music without a political message or negative screams of anger. Just a party atmosphere with a revitalised Foreigner who have a juke box of hits that many bands would die for. Read my review of the Hammersmith gig by clicking here.


Band to look out for in 2015

Next year could well be the year for Glaswegian lassies The Amorettes. A fiery three piece who rock just as hard as Rock Goddess and Girlschool in their prime. A new album is out next year produced by legendary producer Chris Tsangarides who will hopefully capture their gritty and crunching live sound, something that's been amiss on their studio releases so far. With an appearance at the Giants Of Rock Festival, their first ever headline date at the prestigious Borderline in London in February and a UK tour with the Black Star Riders and Europe you'll certainly be feeling the forearm smash of The Amorettes this year.



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