Thursday, December 31, 2015

(2015) Blue Rising - Someday


To begin 2016, I went to my favorite site to hear about new music and came across these guys. I have never in my life heard of them, but the style of music it said they were appealed to me. So let's begin this new year with something I am completely unfamiliar with!

Track 1 - I

The title track definitely comes in pretty forceably with a thunderous, booming guitar riff. I get why they're considered "hard rock" but the singer just doesn't fit the mold. That's not always necessairily a bad thing though. He's just different. Granted this is only the first track. Overall this song is pretty solid and very well recorded. Nothing groundbreaking yet.



Track 2 - Dust

The second track, titled "Dust", comes in with a Rise Against worthy riff. The musicianship is definitely tight between these guys and they've done their homework on how to put together a song. The guitarists use of harmonics in the chorus is a nice added effect, but then again, i've always been a sucker for harmonics. So far this is the standout track. I wouldn't be surprised if this song made it to a radio station near you soon, if it hasn't already.



Track 3 - Someday

Album title tracks can usually go either way. Some are really good, some are just flat out horrid. This one really brings it though! I'm really enjoying this band so far and am becoming very happy that I selected them to be the first band I review. So far, ALL of their songs have been fantastic and my only complaint is that this cd only has 11 tracks. Watch out for the guitar solo in this one! Their guitarist is pretty good.



Track 4 - Breaking The Machine

I love the way this band makes use of intros and outros for their songs. The singer is really good, but his singing does kind of sound the same on each track. If their guitarist or bassist or drummer would sing on some tracks as well, this band could gain popularity very quickly by bringing some variety. They also set themselves up for some good screaming parts, but fail to take advantage of them completely.



Track 5 - Perpetual Motion

This song is quite a bit slower than the rest, but they handle it well. This song definitely showcases the singers voice in a more intimate setting. He really is a great singer, he just seems to not stray from his style at all. That can be a damning habit however. The guitarist once again, shines brightly on this track!



Track 6 - Bones

I think I already have a favorite track, 6 songs in. They start off with a bouncing guitar riff, leading into a subtle acoustic laced verse. The bassist showcases himself a little more than on previous tracks throughout the verses as well. This song will become an INSTANT radio hit if played.




Track 7 - Run Aground

Their guitarist really shines the most on this album. His work on this track shows it the most. The singer also sounds really good on this track. You can almost detect a hint of a Tool influence in the way he goes from his soft spoken verse lyrics into the booming Chorus ones.



Track 8 - Holy Wars

This might end up having the heaviest intro on the album. This album was recorded tremendously well. You can really hear all of the aspects of their music very clearly and this track shows it perfectly. The driving kick drum and snare roll on this track keep the track moving quite nicely.



Track 9 - Waiting

This song doesn't really offer alot until the breakdown. Once it hits and they start jamming on it, it ties it together and saves it from mediocracy. This is one of the less exciting tracks of the album, but still good nevertheless.



Track 10 - King Of Stone

This track is another one that seems to be lacking a little. I still say if they added a second singer that could scream that these guys would be GREAT. But even if they don't you gotta respect them for doing what they're doing. It's hard to get noticed when thousands of bands are doing the same exact thing. At least these guys have their own identity and don't sound like they are a carbon copy of someone else.



Track 11 - Searching

Definitely didn't expect this song to start how it did. This may be the most laid-back song on the entire album. Another intimately set tone will find resonance with listeners searching for something a tad bit lighter. Their guitarist truly is the shining star in this band.



Overall - 34/55

While they aren't going to change the world, they are going to gain fans. They sound different than most of the garbage that's out right now and that's a good thing. Pretty good band and i'm glad I listened to them. Till next time, Willowbee out.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Jack Willowbee's Top 100 Albums Of All Time (1-10)

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! Well, Ladies & Gentleman... this is it! We have reached the end of my top 100 favorite albums of all time list! But, don't think of this as the end... think of this as the beginning!!! Starting January 1st I will be doing weekly reviews every Friday on new albums! Most will be rock, but I will be open to listening and reviewing anything. We will have some surprises along the way and it will be fun to watch this blog grow as the year progresses! It will be interesting to see how many new faces I will know come this time next year. Well, without further review I present you with my top ten favorite albums of all time!!!


#10 - Dredg - Leitmotif (1999)

This was Dredg's SPECTACULAR debut release! The songs on this album helped pave the way for what would become a very successful underground music career. Though they have enjoyed a degree of mainstream success, they never quite broke it big like many of the other bands from their era did. But that's fine with me. They have became one of my favorite bands over the years and this was the album that made it happen. Their instrumentation and Gavin's vocals make for beautiful, wonderful music that needs to be listened to, over and over and over and over again.


#09 - Foo Fighters - Wasting Light (2011)

The Foo Fighters have become one of the best, most iconic bands of our era. When this album came out in 2011 it felt like 1997 all over again. It had the same iconic power as their, "The Colour And The Shape" album. It was the return of the great PAT SMEAR! For those of you who don't know who he was... look up Nirvana towards the end of their career. He was their "unoffical" 4th member. He would have found a permanent spot with them, had it not been for the untimely death of Kurt. This album was FANTASTIC from start till finish. It brought the raw energy back that they so desperately needed and in some sense, brought the Foos storming into a new decade. This album is simply put, a MASTERPIECE.


#08 - Incubus - Make Yourself (1999)

In the spring of 2000, I had just moved and started school in a new city, with a bunch of new kids I had never met before. It was weird at first but it's something you get used to. Anyways, as the summer approached I got a job at a lazer tag place and it was AWESOME. I had heard, "Pardon Me" and wasn't extremely impressed, I was still pretty big into Limp Bizkit and Incubus never really caught on to me. Now, one day while playing lazer tag with my friends after hours, a guy I worked with, Adam, decided that I NEEDED to hear this album. We could play cds while we played lazer tag so we popped it in and began what would become one of the most important moments in my life. As we played, I listened and as the album got to track 4, "The Warmth" something inside of me clicked. I finally realized I wanted to be a musician. I wanted to write music and it was because of THIS album, that I pursued it. This is one of those albums that is life-changing. It should be listened to by every human being born on Earth.


#07 - Third Eye Blind - Third Eye Blind (1997)

This album came at what I consider to be the end of my childhood. After this album came out I grew up pretty quick. My dad died the following year and that's life-changing for anyone. That may be the reason I liked this album so much, but nevertheless... it was AMAZING! 3EB was huge as soon as this album came out! With "Semi-Charmed Life" being the anthem of 1997, it was one of those songs that was and still is inescapable. If you've never listened to the album, do so. Most of the songs that received no air play, are the ones that were the best!


#06 - Foo Fighters - The Colour And The Shape (1997)

With the Foo's coming off of the success of Dave Grohls recorded demo album of 1995, the follow up was nothing short of SPECTACULAR. "TCATS" has become one of their most iconic works and to many, including myself, considered to be their greatest achievement. This is one of those infectious albums that can get stuck in your head for weeks, with just one listen. The songs on this album have been used in countless mediums, in everything from football games, to tv shows and movies. This is easily one of the best rock albums ever written.


#05 - Incubus - S.C.I.E.N.C.E. (1997)

Any true Incubus fan will tell you why this is their best album. This was the album that set them up for the mainstream success they've achieved nowadays. The musicianship and vocal ability of Brandon Boyd blended together magically to form one of the best musical works of the 1900's. The sad part about it, is how underrated this album is. Brandons quirky, well thought out lyrics, not only make you think deeply, they seduce and rape you. But in the most gentle, subtle way possible.


#04 - Nirvana - Nevermind (1991)

In 1991, Nirvana made themselves a household name. MTV played, "Smells Like Teen Spirit" non-stop, as well as the radio. From the opening riffs of that song, we knew something big was about to happen. The sheer power of Daves drum intro to that song, crushed our puny minds. It was devastating and it forever changed the way we listen to rock music today. Countless people have tried to create a song that powerful and EVERYONE has failed. This wasn't simply a song, this was a song written by the gods themselves and handed to Nirvana to perform. IT was that powerful. Shit... it's STILL that powerful.


#03 - Michael Jackson - Thriller (1982)

This album is LITERALLY the best selling album of ALL TIME. It just hit 30 times platinum in the US. That's 30,000,000 copies sold in the US alone. With those numbers in mind, that's roughly 1 in every 10 Americans owning a copy of it. This album is ICONIC. I mean, 7 out of the 9 songs on it became chart topping singles. That is UNHEARD of. The video for Thriller was like a mini movie. And EDDIE VAN FREAKING HALEN played the guitar on "Beat It". This album WAS the 80's. Pretty cool for an album that came out the same year I was born! Below, I leave you with the "Thriller" video in it's entirety!


#02 - Pink Floyd - The Dark Side Of The Moon (1973)

"Dark Side Of The Moon" has become one of the most well known, most treasured albums of all time. Pink Floyd became instant LEGENDS and catapulted themselves into a household name. This album and it's lyrics are just as relevant now more than ever. If you have never heard it, you're probably under 13 and you should do so immediately. This album spent 741 weeks on the Billboard charts from 1973 to 1988. That is insane.


#01 - The Offspring - Smash (1994)

"Ahhhhhh, it's time to relax and you know what that means." At this point it should come as no surprise that my favorite album ever came from 1994. "Smash" was something special. There was just something about it that made me get all ADHD every time I heard it. I wanted to throw things and mosh with the couch in our living room. I can remember being home alone and putting our stereo speakers up to our screen door and blaring "Bad Habit" as long as it would go so all of my neighbors who were outside could hear, "You stupid, dumbshit, god damn, mother fucker" as loud as stereoly possible. =0) If you were one of said neighbors, i'm not sorry. That album ROCKED and 21 years later it's still MY FAVORITE ALBUM EVER.


Thanks for reading and keeping up every week as I shared with you my favorite albums of all time. Now the reviews will begin! Get ready for some shitty and awesome music being fed to you! Who knows, maybe some new favorites will emerge from this blog. Expect new things such as a layout and links to where you can find these great and shitty albums for cheap! Thanks for reading and MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! Now you can go spend some time with the relatives you HATE!!! Or just click share and share this page with everyone you know!!! Till next year, i'm Jack Willowbee and this has been AWESOME! Remember to check back every FRIDAY in 2016 for a new review!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Jack Willowbee's Top 100 Albums Of All Time (11-20)

ALL RIGHT! 20 to go! This is where you really get to know me and what albums I truly love! These were the easiest 20 albums to come to a conclusion on, because I have listened to the songs on these albums, hundreds upon thousands of times. That is no exageration. I LOVE MUSIC. I breathe it. I AM MUSIC. Well, friends... here is numbers 11-20. Get ready!


#20 - HoobUstank - They Sure Don't Make Basketball Shorts Like They Used To (1998)

FORGET everything you think you know about Hoobastank. This is HoobUstank. Same band, but before they became the megastars they are today. They used to have a saxophonist & a good bass player. This album is WAY different than anything they followed it up with. Because this was an independently released album, most people never even had a chance to hear it. Once again, my good friend Nate introduced me to these guys in 2000. This was a year before their huge self-titled album came out and went platinum. It was HUGELY inspired by Mr. Bungle, Faith No More & Incubus. Unfortunately, they transitioned out of this style, lost the saxophonist, Jeremy Wasser and became more "commercially" acceptable. This album will always be one of my favorites and you should check it out all the way through at least once. If you've ever heard one of their songs, you definitely owe it to yourself!


#19 - Fingersmith - The Annexe (2009)

NONE of you have ever heard of this band... and that's a FUCKING shame. This may just be the best unheard of album of ALL TIME. I mean... this album is better than 99% of the albums i've ever heard. It is that good. Oh, and they're from Ireland. Cork to be exact. So let me tell you how I heard about them. You deserve a story on this one!

Back around 2007 or so I was on a musician website called "Garageband". No not the apple program either. It was a site where musicians could earn credits to have their music reviewed by reviewing other artists or by paying a small fee for the credits. Well, anyways... one of the bands I reviewed was these guys. I got a song called "Sub" and back then they were called "Silo". I WAS BLOWN AWAY! I found the Fingersmith version and you can hear it below.

So after hearing this song, I was an INSTANT fan. I needed more! It was extremely hard to find, but I managed to find a demo with 4 songs on it. Soon after I lost it and forgot about them for a couple of years. One day I had the urge to look them up again and what do ya know! They changed their name to "Fingersmith" and had just released "The Annexe"! I was thrilled when I managed to get a copy of it. It was LITTERALLY one of the best albums I have ever heard. Earlier this year I got in contact with the singer and he told me they had broken up. What a shame. But out of our conversation, he did lead me to a site where I could find some unreleased songs I had never heard! Wwll, now you can hear them too! LISTEN TO ALL OF THEM!!!!!!!! You can thank me later!


#18 - Foo Fighters - Foo Fighters (1995)

This was probably the best album put out in 1995. A lot of people instantly wrote this off when it came out because it was recorded by Nirvana's former drummer, "Dave Grohl". It's kind of funny 20 years later to see how famous they have gotten over the years. The best thing about this album is the fact that Dave wrote, recorded & produced everything by HIMSELF! In a sense, this is the best solo rock cd to ever be recorded! We lost a great musician when Kurt died, but we gained an even better one in Dave Grohl. Think about it. Erase all of Dave's accomplishments since Nirvana & bring Kurt back from the dead and replace Nirvana for all of those years instead. Rock music would have been completely different. This album started it all for the Foos!


#17 - Tool - Aenima (1996)

This is Tool's "Magnum Opus". Nothing they have ever written or will write in the coming years will ever compare to this. There was a dark kinda magic to this cd that made you just wanna mosh in your living room. When it came out, I wasn't a fan. Not even remotely. Around 8th grade in 98, when me and my friends started drinking, my friend Dustin would put it on when his mom was working nights and we would get drunk and mosh around his living room listening to this. Haha. SEE!!! I never listened to the lyrics until I was in my early 20's but this album was dark! You probably have already heard it... if not, look below!


#16 - Red Hot Chili Peppers - Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magik (1991)

When this album came out in 1991 I was 8 years old. I remember my brother loving this album and like so many of his albums, I took it and listened to it as well. BLOWN AWAY. The funk that came out of my Sony Walkman penetrated my ears and made me love the Peppers even to this day. Those guys are like the "Rolling Stones" of my generation. They've been through some serious shit, but still continue on as a BAND. It's cool to still hear new stuff from these guys every couple of years and everytime, it still sounds as fresh as ever. However, this album is where most of my favorites reside.


#15 - Pink Floyd - The Wall (1977)

This album was destined to become an instant classic. Quite possibly the greatest double disc album ever written, this album is SUPERB! It's a shame that Roger Waters is such a dick and runs this album into the ground. I don't feel I need to explain why I love this album. You probably do to and this is widely considered one of the greatest rock albums in the history of rock music. I would link to it, but Roger Waters is a douchebag and has the videos on Youtube blocked. Go buy the album instead. WELL worth it!


#14 - Metallica - The Black Album (1991)

In 1991, Metallica was on top of the world! They were the biggest band in rock and you couldn't listen to the radio without hearing one of these songs on. My brother bought it when it came out but for once, that wasn't where I heard it for the first time. In the second grade our music teacher, Mrs. Wade, had a music hall pass she gave out for good behavior, for you and a friend to go out in the hall and listen to the music of your choice on her cassette player. Well, a kid named "David Beckman" invited me to come listen to Metallica with him. My life was forever changed. =0)


#13 - System Of A Down - Toxicity (2001)

The first album of theirs was weird. This one was weird too but HOLY SHIT! This is the ultimate head-banging album! This album solidified them as being one of the best, most exciting rock bands of their era. This album made me scream meaningless lyrics for no apparent reason, other than screaming them. HAha. Every song on this album is amazing and holds special meaning to me. I now even judge how good a drummer is by the measure of how well he can play "Toxicity" on the drums and if he can't... well... can he even be considered a drummer?


#12 - The Mars Volta - De-Loused In The Comatorium (2003)

This was an album that made me super excited! As a fan of "At The Drive-In" I didn't know what to expect. This album beats the shit out of you from the intro to the closing notes. IT was not only an adventure, it was an inspiration to countless musicians to come. This album defined 2003 and brought hope back to music enthusiasts everywhere! If you have not heard it, you need to. If you do not own it, you need to. If you dislike it, well... I don't want you reading this blog anymore! Hahaa.


#11 - Faith No More - King For A Day, Fool For A Lifetime (1995)

This album should have and would had been released in 1994, if it weren't for the death of Kurt Cobain. With close ties to Nirvana, Faith No More were dealing with the loss of a close friend and prolonged the release of this album a year. This is my favorite FNM album and easily one of the most underrated. Funny, it was only this year I sat down and listened to it and already it's number 11 on my list. I shame myself for not listening sooner, but who knows... maybe younger me wouldn't have appreciated it as much. Nonetheless, this album is PURE GOLD. This album is pretty much responsible for anything that came out of the "Nu-Metal" scene and none of those bands are afraid to admit it. FNM was years ahead of their time, it's just a shame this album didn't get more play.


Well. 10 left. Hard to believe it! The next 10 are going to be EXTREMELY fun to write about. Any guesses? This is the point where you can click follow and start commenting by the way!!! See ya next Friday!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Jack Willowbee's Top 100 Albums Of All Time (21-30)

It's hard to believe that we've already gotten to my top 30 favorite albums! These final 30 albums are the ones i've listened to hundreds of times each. These albums have all inspired me in one way or another and helped shape me into the person I am today. Without these albums, the world to me, would be a much, much, darker place. OH! And, instead of having a "Suggested Listening" section, from here on out, I will just be embedding a link to the whole album so you can check it out. All of these final albums are definitely worth a full listen. (If you notice any dead links, let me know so I can repair them!) Let's get to them!


#30 - HORSE The Band - R. Borlax (2003)

When this cd came out, I was dumbfounded. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. I LOVE NES music... I can literally sit down and listen to NES soundtracks like albums and here comes this band making their album sound like a NES soundtrack with screaming. I wasn't huge on the screaming at first, but I absolutely LOVED the NES sounding synth in the background. I'll admit, the screaming has grown on me over the years and to this day, I still love this album. With so many great moments on it, you seriously should listen to the whole thing.


#29 - Faith No More - Album Of The Year (1997)

It should come as no surprise to see another album involving Mike Patton on my list. He is literally one of my top 5 favorite musicians of all time. His influence can be felt everywhere in modern rock music. This was Faith No More's last album until this years "Sol Invictous". I'll be honest, I really just started listening to Faith No More hardcore this year, but they quickly grew on me and now I am a superfan. I like them so much, that this album quickly landed at number 30 on my list. I LOVE the song "Ashes To Ashes" and definitely see the comparisons that Incubus has drawn from them.


#28 - Fuel - Sunburn (1998)

1998 was a weird year for me. My father passed away and much of it left me in a blur. I was 14/15 and didn't pay too much attention to rock music. I was going through a rap/r&b phase and was slowly coming out of it. I got a job the following year at Media Play and they had a wonderful new thing called "cd singles". They were cheap and usually had a music video that was playable on your pc. I picked up one of there's with the song "Shimmer". I had never even heard of them at that point but something told me to get it. I was not sorry. It ended up leading me to one of my favorite 90's bands and one that led me out of my rap phase.


#27 - Dredg - El Cielo (2002)

This album always makes me think. It has a great power to it. I love to just take a drive through the country in the middle of the night by myself and listen to this album. It is a beautifully written and well thought out album. It sucks that these guys never got as big as they should've, but i'm happy that I caught wind of them. I first heard the song "Of The Room" and then saw something about them on the Incubus Online boards back in the day. After I listened to a couple of their albums, they became one of my favorite bands pretty quick and to this day, still are. "El Cielo" is the kind of album that will take you away from everything and that's definitely a good thing.


#26 - Asleep - All These Things We'll Never Need (2006)

Around 2006 my friends band, "Soma" did a reunion show at a place in Columbus. This band was the opening act. I was outside smoking cigarettes and drinking a beer when all of the sudden, I heard them. I dashed inside to catch them playing their song "Rearrange The Red". HOW IN THE FUCK ARE THESE GUYS A LOCAL BAND? I thought to myself... I was floored, everyone was. They had this swagger to their live show that made everyone else disappear and you became mesmerized by their music. This was their debut album and if you can find it, it's one you should NOT miss. Asleep to this day, have still never received the recognition they deserved, but perhaps, someday people will realize the error of their ways. I couldn't find a link to the whole album, but here's one of their videos for one of the best songs on the album!


#25 - Rise Against - End Game (2011)

When "End Game" came out, it struck a chord in me. It connected on so many levels with what I was going though at the time and just made complete sense about the state the world was in. I believe this to be their most ambitious work to date and there was not a dull moment out of the 13 songs on the album. The music video for "Make It Stop (September’s Children)" may be one of the most heart-wrenching i've ever seen. This album makes me want to scream along everytime. I thank you for this album, Rise Against.


#24 - At The Drive-In - Relationship Of Command (2000)

At The Drive-In was one of the best unheard of bands to come out in the late 90's. After recording this album they broke up and the members went on to form Sparta & The Mars Volta. This was where those bands came from though. There was something special about this album and you could hear in the music, what was about to become of both bands that came from their demise. This album was a very important keynote in the formation of what would become known as the Post-Hardcore/Punk music movement.


#23 - The Offspring - Americana (1998)

The Offspring are one of those bands that strike GOLD every other album or so. Coming off the disappointment that was "Ixnay On The Hombre", they came back with this offering. "Pretty Fly For A White Guy" was like, the anthem to my freshman year of high school and "The Kids Aren't Alright" is still one of my favorite songs of theirs to date. The Offspring will always be one of those bands that take me back and this album does it every single time!


#22 - Vent/Audiovent - Papa's Dojo (1999) & Dirty, Sexy Knights In Paris (2002)

These albums are kind of one in the same. One, "Papa's Dojo" was released while they still went by "Vent" and the other, "Dirty Sexy Knights In Paris" was released under their new name, "Audiovent". This was another band that I was introduced through my friend Nate, the HoobUstank guy. I heard about "Vent" in 2000 around the same time I was getting into Incubus. I had NO clue these guys were related, let alone brothers of Mike & Brandon! It's a shame they didn't last. If they had, I think they may have surpassed Incubus in terms of musical quality. I am SUPER HAPPY we got these albums though! Papa's Dojo is extremely hard to find, so do some research if you like the album below! YOU WILL NOT BE SORRY!!!!!


#21 - Weezer - The Blue Album (1994)

Let's just go ahead and say it. 1994 was the best year of all time for music! SO MANY GREAT ALBUMS CAME OUT!!! It really was ridiculous. I wish another year like that would come along but I fear it may not happen for a long, long time. A year like that comes along once in a lifetime and 1994 was that year for me. Everything just seemed perfect in 1994. It was a great year to be alive and I feel bad for all of you who were either to young or not alive yet, to experience it first hand and to those of you who were alive, wasn't it GREAT???


We're getting super close to the end! Any ideas on my top 20? I'd love to know who all has been reading along and what some of your favorite albums were too! Well, it's late and Fridays are long so I must be off! Happy reading and have a wonderful FRIDAY!!!

Friday, December 4, 2015

Jack Willowbee's Top 100 Albums Of All Time (31-40)

Well, with only 40 more albums left, now you will begin to see my absolute favorite albums ever! These are the ones I have listened to 100's of times... literally. I know the words to just about every song on every one of these albums from here on out. On a side note... today I heard that one of my favorite vocalists of all time, Mr. Scott Weiland, has passed away. It is a shame, but I can't say that I am shocked. R.I.P. Scott... for the life you lead, you need it.


#40 - Incubus - A Crow Left Of The Murder (2004)

Incubus has been my favorite band since 2000, when the album "Make Yourself" came out. For the true fans out there you know that this was the first album with new bassist, "Ben Kenney" of "The Roots". This album came with the departure of one of the founding members of Incubus, "Dirk Lance". You can definitely hear the difference if you listen closely. To me, this was Incubus' last GREAT album. After that, they became just another shit band with a handful of good songs on each album. I feel that when Dirk left the band, Incubus lost their edge and became more or less, "hipster". It saddened me to see my favorite band, stray away from what made them my favorite band in the first place. Oh well, maybe he'll be back one day and they will actually put out a decent heavier album again. Till then, i'll still take a handful of songs. This album as a whole is pretty good, there are a couple of songs that previewed the shit that was to come, but there are some real gems on this album as well. Overall, I give it a 7/10.

SUGGESTED LISTENING (#6 - Sick Sad Little World)


#39 - Bush - 16 Stone (1994)

Hmmmm... Another album from 1994. I really have to count out how many albums from 94 are on my list. I'm guessing at least 12 or more. Bushs' debut album was HUGE. Closing out the year being released at the beginning of December, they were instantly catapulted into fame. This album was loaded with hits! I will never forget the first time I heard "Machine Head" on the radio. There was just something about the intro to that song that captivated me. To be a kid in the 90's was GREAT, you really had to be there. Looking back, I wish I would have been even more receptive like I am now, cause i'm still finding albums I managed to miss. I did not however, miss this one!



#38 - Red Hot Chili Peppers - Californiacation (1999)

This was one of those albums that showed you just how good the "Chili Peppers" were. Here we were, 16 years into their career and they showed absolutely no signs of slowing down. This band is my era's "Rolling Stones". I have a good feeling, they'll still be touring another 16 years from now. 1999 was a great year. We were on the cusp of a new millennium and no one knew quite what to expect. It was albums like this that showed us where the future of rock music was going and the future looked bright. Despite all that's happened in the 16 years since it's release, I still have faith in rock music. You just have to know where to look.

SUGGESTED LISTENING (#2 - Parallel Universe)


#37 - The Police - Synchronicity (1983)

You could not escape this band in the 80's. One of, if not perhaps the best band of the era, this was their last album before breaking up as a band. To go out while you're on top and walk away from such a successful band, baffles me. But I guess it was better that way than running into the "Incubus Effect". "Synchronicity" is one of those albums that EVERYONE has heard at least one song from. It was that powerful. They used it in movies, it still gets played on the radio non stop & you can hear it just about anywhere you go to shop. It had HUGE success and to this day, is still my favorite "Police" album.

SUGGESTED LISTENING - (#6 - Synchronicity II)


#36 - Mr. Bungle - Mr. Bungle (1991)

This may be the weirdest album you've never heard of on my list. Once again, another band led by the great, Mike Patton. This was his first bands debut album. After shooting to success with "Faith No More", he found time to make this lesser known band, a little more known with his newfound fame. This album was just weird. It was like going to a carnival where you might die on one of the rides. This album had a HUGE impact on early Incubus & HoobUstank as well as countless other bands from California. Without Mr. Bungle, it would be hard to see if Incubus and other bands would have either existed. We owe a great deal to Mike Patton for help shaping the way we listen to rock music today, whether you realize it or not.



#35 - A Perfect Circle - Mer De Noms (2001)

This album was a breath of fresh air for Tool fans in 2000. A lighter version of "Tool", this album was a much more subtle approach to the darkness that resides in Maynard. I can remember hearing "Judith" for the first time and thinking holy shit that's blasphemous. Now i'm not a man of the cloth... but if there is a hell, this dude is already on fire. HAha. I can remember my friend "Tim" being in love with this album and taking hour long drives through the country going to his house, baking out with triple blunts and blaring this album. That is probably my favorite memory of this album and these songs ALWAYS take me back.



#34 - Dredg - Catch Without Arms (2005)

Dredg is another band you might not have heard of. Hailing from California, they are what is called "art rock". It is kind of a mix between Prog and Alternative. When this album came out I had already been listening to them for about 4 years. So when this album came out, I was definitely excited. Dredg is one of those bands, with one of those singers that makes them completely unique from everything else that is out. If you have not heard them, I suggest you do. Start with the old stuff and work to this album. After this one they rapidly went downhill.

SUGGESTED LISTENING (#11 - Hungover On A Tuesday)


#33 - Hoobastank - Hoobastank (2001)

Hoobastank was one of the first bands I knew about before they got HUGE. My friend Nate was on their street team in 2000 and told me about their independently released album, "They Sure Don't Make Basketball Shorts Like They Used To". My first impression from the title was a little weird. So I searched NAPSTER of all places and managed to grab a copy of it. Oh... My... GOD. I instantly loved this band and followed their every release. Towards the beginning of 2001 I managed to get my hands on a couple of demos that were being passed around in small circles. They were, "Crawling In The Dark, Up & Gone & Ready For You". I couldn't wait to hear the album! When it finally released, I found out my local rock station, 99.7 The Blitz. Sure enough, they introduced them as a "new" band". HAhahaha. Wrong.



#32 - Incubus - Morning View (2001)

This album was special. It was the last album by "Incubus". The cool thing about it was that they rented out a house and recorded it themselves. I can remember skipping school with my friend Matt and going and buying it on a cold ass day in November the day it came out. We drove around smoking joints and listening to it before going back to school, HIGH AS FUCK. It was fun and is a memory I will always remember not only because of that, but because of how GOOD this album was. This was one of the albums that made me want to start a band. This was one of the albums that made me want to get better at playOh, aning the guitar and it was ultimately THIS album, that made me learn how to sing... well, somewhat.

SUGGESTED LISTENING (#12 - Under My Umbrella)


#31 - The Mars Volta - Frances The Mute (2005)

I've always had a knack for getting the albums I want, weeks early. This may have been where it all began. I can remember having a rough copy of this album, MONTHS before it came out. This was one of those albums that you had to turn all the lights off, smoke a blunt to and just relax. It will take you on an adventure if you just close your eyes and listen. Make sure no one will interrupt you cause you will want complete focus. Only consisting of 5 tracks, but lasting a little over an hour long, this album is truly special. It showcases all that is great about "The Mars Volta".
SUGGESTED LISTENING (#4 - Miranda That Ghost Just Isn't Holy Anymore)


3 more weeks left! If you've come with me this far, click like, click follow, click whatever you can! Oh, and TELL YOUR FRIENDS!!! We're coming to the end of my countdown with only 3 weeks left and I want to see at least 100 followers! I've noticed people from all over the world reading and I would love to know how you are coming across this page! Thanks for reading!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Jack Willowbee's Top 100 Albums Of All Time (41-50)

Ok! Now that we have the first 50 out of the way it's time to get into my top 50 favorite albums of all time. This is where it gets good, so get ready!


#50 - Green Day - Dookie (1994)

Another CD from 1994! Don't worry, there's still more! I told you, 1994 was a magical year. Being an 11 year old kid was AWESOME in 1994. There was so much good music coming out in every genre, it was definitely amazing being alive and witnessing it first hand. Green Day's 1994 offering was no different. This was the album that put them on the map. Everyone had heard of Green Day, but they were one of those bands that only a few people liked. Then this album came out and shot them into mainstream success. Without this cd, many of the bands you love today wouldn't have existed. Call it "the butterfly effect" if you will. This cd was LOADED with hits but my favorite was always, "She". If you're young and haven't heard it yet for whatever reason, do it. This was, is and always will be, a GREAT album.



#49 - Silverchair - Neon Ballroom (1999)

Silverchair was one of those bands I completely ignored as a child. I knew about them and a couple of their songs, but I just never had the urge to listen to them. When I finally came around and checked out a whole cd of theirs, it was this one. Immediately, I was floored. WHY DID IT TAKE ME SO LONG??? Oh well, better late than never. I always liked, "Anthem For The Year 2000", but... "Emotion Sickness". Well, that song was them saying goodbye to their musical careers.

SUGGESTED LISTENING (#1 - Emotion Sickness)


#48 - Shades Apart - Eyewitness (1999)

Here's one of those bands that you might know about, but probably not. They had a song on the American Pie soundtrack titled, "Stranger By The Day". It was always one of my favorites and when I saw this album on the shelf in West Virgina on a family outing, I was soooooooooooooooooooooo freaking happy! I must have listened to it 20 times that afternoon and it has remained in my head ever since. Great album! Although not as heavy as a lot of the albums on my list, it's spot is definitely deserved!

SUGGESTED LISTENING (#1 - Edge Of The Century)


#47 - Tomahawk - Tomahawk (2001)

What can you say about Mike Patton that hasn't already been said a million times. If you don't know who he is then you have definitely been living under a rock. This guy does it all, he's been in countless bands and side projects, he even did all of the monster growls in the Will Smith movie, "I Am Legend". EASILY, the most versatile vocalist of our time, he's one of those people you either love or hate. At first listen you may turn this album off and dismiss it. It's easy to do. However, if you listen to it repeatedly it grows on you like that wart you don't want anyone to see. I suggest you check this out.

SUGGESTED LISTENING - (#4 - God Hates A Coward)


#46 - System Of A Down - Mezmerize / Hypnotize (2005)

These albums were both equally as good and often overlooked. If you actually sat down and listened to both of them however, you would know how good they were as a whole. As always, it featured music only Serj and company could come up with. It was like a carnival ride with Frank Zappa as the ringleader. The movie "Disturbia" with Shia Lebeauf even used their song, "Lonely Day" in their trailer. Start with track one on Mezmerize and listen all the way through. It's worth your time, I promise!

SUGGESTED LISTENING (Hypnotize - #8 - Holy Mountains)


#45 - Deftones - White Pony (2000)

The Deftones were one of those bands that again, I was late to the bandwagon. My introduction to them came with this album. But I must say, I am happy it did! This was their best album in my opinion and the fact that it had Maynard from Tool on one track made it all the more amazing. If you haven't heard this album, you might as well do it right now. This may have been the album that ended the Deftones because after it, I never listened to another album of theirs again. Every song on this album was awesome and it was the kind of album, best listened to, driving down the freeway at night.

SUGGESTED LISTENING - (#9 - Passenger (Featuring Maynard James Keenan))


#44 - Alice In Chains - Dirt (1992)

This is easily one of the best albums of the 90's. There were so many iconic songs on this album that it would be hard for any Alice In Chains fan to pinpoint a favorite. Another one of those bands I wasn't into until my late 20's, I wish I had listened to them wayyyyyy earlier. I always liked their hits and all, but some of the other album tracks were just dark. The band "Godsmack" even took their name from one of this albums tracks. It's a shame Layne had to die so young, but most of the truly great ones do. Isn't that the case with rock and roll though?



#43 - Stone Temple Pilots - Core (1992)

This was always my favorite STP album. It had a TON of great music and was the perfect debut album. I can remember being 9 or 10 and having the cassette in my walkman all of the time. I would always get to "Creep" and rewind it everytime. Then I would repeat this process for about an hour. I always loved this album and still do to this day. I'd even be willing to bet that another 23 years from now, I will still love it.



#42 - Smashing Pumpkins - Mellon Collie And The Infinite Sadness (1995)

"The World Is A Vampire"... might just be the most recognized song intro of all time. I can remember hearing it when I was little and thinking to myself, "What the hell does that even mean". Well, 20 years later, I think we all know what he was trying to say. This album had so many great songs layered throughout it. You didn't have to like them to like the songs on this album. Everyone is guilty of singing along to at least one of them. It's funny how people say, "I hate Billy Corgan and The Smashing Pumpkins". Only to hear that same person singing along to "Bullet With Butterfly Wings" when it comes on.

SUGGESTED LISTENING (Disc 1 - #4 - Zero)


#41 - Faith No More - The Real Thing (1989)

When "Faith No More", kicked vocalist "Chuck Mosely" out of the band, it may have been the greatest decision of their lives. In 1989 a song came out named "Epic". It hit MTV and the radio with so much fury that it's still being played today. EVERYONE has heard that song and was, to many of us, our introduction to Mike Patton. No one had any idea who he was to become but because of THAT song and THAT album, MOST of the bands you know and love today were formed. So much great music has been inspired because of this album that it would literally be a completely different world musically had it not been written. Mike Patton was decades in front of music. This album is still as relevant today ad it was in 1989. Amazing foresight into the future. Thank you Mike Patton. Thank you.
SUGGESTED LISTENING (#4 - Surprise! You're Dead!)


Well. We are 4 weeks away from the last of this countdown. It's been fun sharing all of this with the thousands of you now reading! Happy Thanksgiving and i'll see you next week!