May 042022
 


photo by Catherine B Photografie

(We’re into May 2022, so what the hell are we doing with a continuation of our LISTMANIA 2021 series? Well, it’s because Seb Painchaud, the main man behind the Montréal band Tumbleweed Dealer, didn’t really exhaust his 2021 recommendations with the year-end list he gave us last December (here). In this supplemental list he proves again that he has very expansive and eclectic musical tastes, un-confined by the boundaries of metal.)

As prophesied in my year=end list, I have returned with a whole list of shit I slept on last year. Now, that title might perfectly describe how I completely missed out on some of these albums until it was too late, but in other cases my relationship to them isn’t always of the ‘feces I laid dormant on’ variety. I like making this second list because it lets me name-drop some albums I really enjoyed but left off the yearly rundown for various reasons. I feel an AOTY candidate requires a deeper connection than just pure enjoyment with the listener. But then again, that might just be me being a fucking music snob. So some of these might just be simpler/more to the point/honestly in some cases better than the stuff on the aforementioned previous list.

So here is a list of 2021 releases I feel you should check out if you haven’t already… Continue reading »

Dec 232021
 


photo by Catherine B Photografie

 

(Seb Painchaud, the main man behind the Montréal band Tumbleweed Dealer, has very expansive and eclectic musical tastes, which is one reason why for six years in a row we’ve asked him to share a year-end list with us. This one, as usual, goes in all sorts of different directions.)

So, 2021 huh? At least it wasn’t ‘2020 part 2, this time it’s personal’. The theme of the year has to be ‘cautious optimism’ as things slowly creep back to something we can consider adjacent enough to what we used to call normal for us to become complacent once again. Shows are slowly starting back-up, I can eat at my favorite Pho place again, looks like we might just be on the other end of this shitstorm and we may even get a few months before the next one starts (omicron, nuclear warfare, global warming, the fall of capitalism, murder hornets 2: The Return, all bets are open on what will hit next!)

All in all, a much better year than the previous one, musically and personally. I’m turning in my list earlier than usual this year, for once having a list of 20 potential albums that I all feel comfortable including. I will still be scouring everyone else’s list for a potential entry in a ‘Shit I Slept On’ compilation early next year, but until then, hope you discover something new in here! Continue reading »

Mar 182021
 


Spanish Love Songs

 

(Seb Painchaud, the main man behind the Montréal band Tumbleweed Dealer, has very expansive and eclectic musical tastes, which is one reason why for five years in a row we’ve asked him to share a year-end list with us. He did that for 2020 (here), but as explained below he has found some other (mainly non-metal) 2020 releases he wants to recommend.)

As you might have noticed reading my year-end list, I wasn’t in a very good place mentally when I wrote it. Reflecting upon such a shitty year amidst attempts to make holiday plans around the pandemic and knowing the disappointment that was in store for my kid made what is usually the highlight of my year turn into a chore. Even the wife remarked that I’m usually in a great mood afterward and looking forward to it being published, when this year I seemed to power through it like a chore and be happy to just have it done with. I did, and I was.

Seasonal depression had met OCD-induced anxiety and they both basked in my negative outlook as I tried to find something good to say about anything that happened in the last twelve months.

The year itself, other than the plague-filled mess it became, was also a reaction to a 2019 spent scouring new releases where I honestly just wanted to jam some familiar classics. The year-end lists filled me with dread rather than glee, and that was just one more thing that COVID had taken away from me. I gotta admit, I didn’t put in the time I usually do to compile the list, and just didn’t listen to as much new music as I did in previous years.

After a beginning of 2021 spent ignoring all recent albums and basking in nostalgia, my passion for seeking out new stuff has returned, and I’m now realizing 2020 had some damn good releases I just plain slept on. Some I missed completely, some I passed on after too quick of a listen, and some just didn’t click at the time.

So here are 10 albums I slept on last year that you need to check out: Continue reading »

Dec 292020
 

 

(Seb Painchaud, the main man behind the Montréal band Tumbleweed Dealer, has very expansive and very eclectic musical tastes, and a way with words, and so for a fifth year in a row we asked him to share a year-end list with us. As in every other year, his list pulls us off our usual beaten paths by highlighting some favorite releases that are way outside the usual metal lists.)

Throughout this cursed year of plague and idiocy, I kept coming back to one cosmic realization whenever I mass-consumed new albums: ‘Music does not exist in a vacuum’

It took the literal descent into madness that was the last twelve months for me to finally admit this to myself. I had always liked to believe that music is some sort of absolute truth with an exact value that doesn’t fluctuate once you’ve discovered it. But as I used my search for new releases to either escape my reality, to try to understand it, or to seek some way to relate to it, I had to finally admit to myself that whatever music is put out there at any point in time it becomes intertwined with that period in human history. It’s judged against what has come before, it’s used in relation with what is happening right now, and it will impact what has yet to be written. Continue reading »

Jan 022020
 

 

(Seb Painchaud, the main man behind Montréal’s Tumbleweed Dealer, has very expansive and very eclectic musical tastes, and a way with words, and so for a fourth year in a row we asked him to share a year-end list with us. As in every other year, his list pulls us off our usual beaten paths by highlighting some favorite releases that are way outside the usual metal lists… including a lot of very interesting Not-Metal.)

 

So this year I bring to you a proper top 20 albums list. No ‘Albums you might have missed’ bullshit, just straight up my 20 favorites. Why? Well, I’ve dubbed 2019 ‘The Year Of Good Not Great ©’ as it brought us a lot of more-of-the-same and I-preferred-their-previous-one outings that left me feeling like a jaded musical hipster complaining about every release as he clangs away at his typewriter in a Starbucks, mansplaining to every underage girl he can corner in a house party he doesn’t know anyone at about how he was into every band before they ‘sold out’ and owns an original first pressing copy of their demo on vinyl. Continue reading »

Jan 082019
 

 

(2016 was the year when I discovered Montréal’s Tumbleweed Dealer through their extremely cool third album Tokes, Hatred & Caffeine (and I’m still trying to be patient while waiting for TD4). The band’s main man Seb Painchaud has very expansive and very eclectic musical tastes, and a way with words, and so for a third year I asked him to share a year-end list with us. As before, he pulls us off our usual beaten paths by highlighting some favorite releases that are way outside the usual metal lists… including a lot of very interesting Not-Metal.)

 

So this year we’re going to call it a Top 20 Albums You Should Check Out. If I were to make a top 20 list, I’d waste a lot of space telling you about albums you’ve already heard and will be present on every other list you read. Do you really need to see me overcompensate for my limited vocabulary with swear words to explain that Frontierer and Sectioned dominated the scene with their amazing albums? If so, then here you go: Fuck a cock on a stick its god damn fuck your mother fucking good.

And when you have every established music website and magazine tripping over themselves to talk to you about The Armed, you don’t really need me adding to it. Do we need to discuss Mol? You either hate it or love it, but you probably know about it. And all the big tech death bands released great records that pushed the limits of the human body this year. Only one remembered to include amazing song writing. Let’s not get into a shouting match over which one it was.

It was Obscura. Those Cynic-like robot vocal hooks had me going back for more all year long, Fight me if you don’t agree.

So here is my ‘Top 20 Albums You Might’ve Missed This Year’ (yes the title changed since the opening line). Continue reading »

Jan 032018
 

 

(2016 was the year when I discovered Montréal’s Tumbleweed Dealer through their extremely cool album Tokes, Hatred & Caffeine (and may there be a new one soon, please). The band’s main man Seb Painchaud has very expansive and very eclectic musical tastes, and a way with words, and so for a second year I asked him to share his year-end list with us.  As before, he pulls us off our usual beaten paths by highlighting favorite releases that are outside the usual metal lists… including a lot of very interesting Not-Metal.)

 

 

 

  1. Kusanagi – Aeon

A band I always enjoyed yet never recommended, they seemed like a 2nd- or 3rd-tier math rock band with really good albums but never transcending into anything great. This all changed with Aeon. The band puts song writing before technicality on this album and 5 songs averaging a format of 8 minutes each puts emphasis on that, as these are actual songs with recurring riffs and melodies rather than a collection of angular riffs.

https://kusanagi.bandcamp.com/album/aeon

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Continue reading »

Dec 302016
 

tumbleweed-dealer-live

 

(2016 was the year when I discovered Montréal’s Tumbleweed Dealer through their very cool new album Tokes, Hatred & Caffeine. The band’s main man Seb Painchaud has very expansive and very eclectic musical tastes, and in this year-end list he pulls us off our usual beaten paths by highlighting favorite releases that are outside the usual metal lists… including a lot of Not-Metal.)

 

To be honest, I fucking hate Christmas. Yup, that’s how I’m going to start this article. I fucking hate the holidays. I hate the parties, the gift giving and the family gatherings. It’s cold as fuck up here at this time of year and snow isn’t the beautiful white flurries you see in Christmas movies in a big city like Montreal, it’s just grey, wet mush that ends up everywhere, ensuring wet socks from the second you leave the house until the moment you brave the arctic winds once again to make it home.

The one thing I actually enjoy about the holidays: End of year list season.

I love going through every list I can check out and every album I haven’t heard yet, and try to agglomerate everyone else’s discoveries into my own list. That’s why I put out a top 100 list every year. Not 25, 50, or even 75. 100. And I always end up cutting albums to bring it down to 100.

But 100 is a bit much for here and there’s no point in mentioning the same albums as everyone else. So I offered NCS to write a list of albums you won’t find on most metalhead’s lists. Continue reading »