As always, the top albums are for releases from 2010 that are full albums (no EP’s or demos). They also have to be new studio albums for 2010, not re-recordings, re-releases, cover songs, or live material. Below the combined TOP 30 are links to each staff members personal "best of" lists which besides the top albums contains such things as best new band, best DVD/Blu-Ray, disappointments of 2010, greatest hopes for 2011, personal metal discovery of 2010, and various other metal-related categories. Enjoy!
The Top 30 Heavy Metal Albums of 2010
(Click the album cover to read our review.
If no review is available the link it to the band’s MySpace page.)
1. Accept – Blood of the Nations
Wolf Hoffman’s reaction to the band’s #1 placement in our list was:
"Sensational!!! We are so happy about this reaction by the fans. This last year has been nothing short of phenomenal for Accept."
BLOOD OF THE NATIONS is a fantastic album, so fantastic that it very easily came out on top when we compiled our best of 2010 list! In the media, producer Andy Sneap said when he worked with the band he made them go back and listen to the 80’s albums, and it worked. Accept have delivered the album they needed to make. Accept reformed with a vocalist who is just as good as Udo Dirkschneider. Vocalist Mark Tornillo rages through the songs with power and charisma, without being a clone. Accept have proven to the world in 2010 they are still relevant, powerful, uncompromising and most of all entertaining. Welcome back!
2. Blind Guardian – At the Edge of Time
Easily the best and strongest Blind Guardian album since NIGHTFALL IN MIDDLE-EARTH with a maximum of variety and everything that has turned these guys from Krefeld into what they are today: one of Germany’s most successful and influential metal bands. With AT THE EDGE OF TIME, Blind Guardian returned to the fold in total triumph. This is an album to be enjoyed for numerous repeat listens. Newer fans should eat it up, and older fans should be appeased with the band’s renewed emphasis on their thrashy roots.
3. Ratt– Infestation
Ratt is Metal. Always have been and likely always will be. From their appearance on the very first Metal Massacre compilation in 1981 alongside the likes of Metallica, Malice, and Bitch, to the new 2010 album, Ratt have always been among the heaviest of the so-called "hair metal" bands. So despite what the revisionists may think, Ratt have a firm spot in the development and evolution of the Heavy Metal genre and have earned their spot in this year’s list. Sonically the Ratt Pack is back! The band had stated they wanted a real up-tempo record and distinctly aimed for the classic sound. They nailed it. It’s all there, the swagger and slight sneer of Pearcy voice, the fluid and fiery soloing of DeMartini’s axe-work, the complimentary work of Cavazo…it’s a beautiful thing to behold!
4. Triptykon – Eparistera Daimones
Thomas Gabriel Fischer (AKA Tom G. Warrior) has nothing to prove to anyone. As the principal architect behind Hellhammer and Celtic Frost, Fischer’s body of work is the reason that many bands exist today. Two years since Celtic Frost’s very public dissolution, Fischer could have easily opted to rest on his laurels and bask in the afterglow of his evil legacy, but nooooo. To the contrary, Fischer has assembled a new band and recorded an album of new material that’s arguably some of the best in his career. Triptykon is the band, EPARISTERA DAIMONES is the album, and yes – it’s as good as Fischer has promised it to be!
5. Melechesh – The Epigenesis
Black/Death/Middle Eastern "Mesopotamian Metal" extremists made a big impact this year. Originally from IsraHELL and now based out of the Netherlands, the band has been around in some form since 1993. That Melechesh are able to maintain the album’s early momentum through to the record’s dying moments makes what they have achieved with THE EPIGENESIS that much more remarkable. Unlike so much of what passes for modern-day extremity, every one of this disc’s eleven tracks bristles with its own identity and design. It will demand a lot of attention – this definitely isn’t the record to whip out at your next kegger – but the rewards far outweigh the investment. Absolutely superb in every way.
6. Helloween – 7 Sinners
Helloween are very comfortable right now. They are back on a major label, the line-up has been stable for probably the longest stretch in the bands history, and they have fallen into a great pattern of releasing a studio album every couple of years (right around Halloween naturally). Relaxed, confident and mature the band have nothing to prove but instead of delivering a complacent record, the band have delivered the fastest, heaviest album of their career. It’s their 26th release over and 13th full-length studio album of all-new, original material. Lucky #13 for the band sees a crowning achievement with 13 killer cuts spread across the hour. Helloween have delivered a masterpiece. It will quickly silence all the fans who couldn’t stomach UNARMED from earlier this year.
7. OverKill – Ironbound
The veteran New Jersey boys return with a compelling slab of unmistakeably old school thrash that is tinged with a fine mix of groove, progressiveness and melody that separates Overkill from the multitudes of carbon-copy thrashers out there. This is modern thrash the way it should be played: roots in the 80s but with its direction and ambition befitting a metal scene on the cusp of its 30-year anniversary. It’s a beautiful thing to behold: while most of their contemporaries have split up or sold out, Overkill are still doing their thing, updating and improving but never forgetting where they came from.
8. Nevermore – The Obsidian Conspiracy
Five years – that’s how long Nevermore made us wait for a sequel to the still awe-inspiring THIS GODLESS ENDEAVOUR. By modern-day standards that’s an absolute eternity, the length of which only the likes of Slayer or Metallica could reasonably be expected to get away with. Regardless of delay, the album is a perfect example of heavy metal in its purest, most intelligent and provocative form. As always the band defies classification with elements of power, thrash, prog, blended together into a mixture that is uniquely Nevermore.
9. Sabaton – Coat of Arms
Sweden’s war metallers, Sabaton, have been consistently moving to the forefront of the power metal movement in the last few years. COAT OF ARMS continues Sabaton’s fine tradition of power metal with bite. The band is in fine form throughout and do not disappoint. You listen to a Sabaton album for the pounding marches (“Uprising”) the fast assaults (“Midway”, “Screaming Eagles”), and the catchy hooks and choruses (every damn song!) and COAT OF ARMS has it all!
10. Halford – IV – Made of Metal
Finally! Halford was really overdue. Despite having a skeleton of a catalog, Halford really needed to put some meat on the bones of his solo career. MADE OF METAL is really only the third studio album of all new material in over 10 years. Sure the catalog looks impressive but in reality, live albums, demo albums, EP’s, digital only live albums and novelty Christmas albums are just filler. Halford needed to deliver the goods and we’re pleased to say he is still made of Metal. The album clocks in at a whopping 14 tracks at over an hour it is his longest solo album to date.
Number 11 to 20
11. Crazy Lixx – New Religion
12. Iron Maiden – The Final Frontier
13. Scorpions – Sting In The Tail
14. Immolation – Majesty and Decay
15. Avantasia – The Wicked Symphony / Angel Of Babylon
IRON MAIDEN, with their crew and many tons of equipment, will once again be boarding Ed Force One in February 2011 to fly 50,000 miles round the globe on their continuing mammoth Final Frontier World Tour, playing 29 shows and visiting 26 cities in thirteen countries across 5 continents with Bruce again in the pilot’s seat, and heading into more new Frontiers of uncharted Maiden territory!!!
The first show will be on Feb 11th in Moscow’s Olympic Stadium, after which the Boeing 757, which will have new designs to tie in with the new album and tour, will fly the band to Singapore and Indonesia for Maiden’s first ever shows there, before arriving in Australia to headline two arena dates and five Soundwave Festivals. Ed Force One then turns its attention briefly to the Northern Hemisphere with a first show ever in South Korea and two shows in Tokyo, before heading all the way across the Pacific, a journey which (believe it or not!) is 6660 miles for two shows in Mexico. An extensive series of stadium shows through five South American countries follows, including a first visit to Belem, Northern Brazil, and, via Puerto Rico, the band will play the final show on this leg of the tour in Tampa, Florida, USA on April 17th, exactly 66 days after Moscow! (full dates below)
Says Bruce, “We were taken aback by the fantastic reaction from everyone to Ed Force One during the 2008/09 World Tour. As our fans all know from the “Flight 666” film, which documented the trials and tribulations we underwent in order to get the whole project literally off the ground, the end result was well worth all the effort and complex logistics we had to deal with! The band and crew enjoyed themselves so much travelling that way, it seemed only logical to set up this part of The Final Frontier tour in the same way so we could get to see as many fans as possible all over the World, only this time we’re pushing the boundaries even further and going to more places Maiden has never been before… in true Frontier style!! We very much look forward to playing in Singapore, Indonesia and South Korea for the first time, as well as revisiting our fans everywhere else.
“The set list will be different to this year’s tour. Of course we will play more songs from the new album and some other recent material, but we will include a healthy dose of older fan favourites as we will be playing to so many new faces who we know will want to hear those songs live for the first time. We will cram into the plane as much of the production we used this year as is physically possible, including of course Eddie, and intend to replicate the spectacular light show in as many places as we are able. All in all it promises to be a fantastic trip for everyone!! So see you all soon”.
Since its release in August on EMI (UME in the US), “The Final Frontier” — the band’s 15th studio album – has proved their most successful chart album to date, registering the #1 sales chart slot in 28 countries around the globe; from Lebanon, Arabia and India in the East, to Canada in the West, New Zealand down South, throughout UK and Europe and across Latin America, as well as reaching No.1 in Billboard’s European, Tastemaker and Rock Charts, and No.4 in the USA, which is the band’s highest position ever there.
Having already played an extensive 25 date North American Tour and some selected European shows this year, Maiden will undertake a full European Tour in the summer of 2011. Some dates (as below) have already been announced but keep an eye on this site over the next few weeks and months for many more announcements.
As always we hope to facilitate ‘First to the Barrier’ for our fan club members at as many shows as possible, and exclusive ticket pre-sales in some countries (such as the USA), and details of these will be announced nearer the time here on IronMaiden.com.
There is also a Fan Club trip planned for the Florida shows! Details to be revealed shortly here.
UK fans – don’t worry, we most certainly haven’t forgotten you… you’re next!!
The dates for IRON MAIDEN’S Round The World Trip on Ed Force One and current European dates for The Final Frontier World Tour are:
11 – Moscow, Russia – Olympiski
15 – Singapore – Singapore Indoor Stadium
17 – Jakarta, Indonesia – Stadium Utama Gelaro Bung Karno Senayan
20 – Bali, Indonesia – Garuda Wisnu Kencana
23 – Melbourne, Australia – Hisense Arena
24 – Sydney, Australia – Entertainment Centre
26 – Brisbane, Australia – Showgrounds (Soundwave Festival)
27 – Sydney, Australia – Eastern Creek Raceway (Soundwave Festival)
4 – Melbourne, Australia – Showgrounds (Soundwave Festival)
5 – Adelaide, Australia – Bonython Park (Soundwave Festival)
7 – Perth, Australia – Steel Blue Oval (Soundwave Festival)
10 – Seoul, Korea – Chamsil Gymnasium
12 – Tokyo, Japan – Super Arena
13 – Tokyo, Japan – Super Arena
17 – Monterrey, Mexico – Banamex Theatre
18 – Mexico City, Mexico – Foro Sol
20 – Bogota, Columbia – CC Sapo
23 – Lima, Peru – Estadio San Marcos
26 – Sao Paulo, Brazil – Morumbi Stadium
27 – Rio De Janeiro, Brazil – HSBC Arena
30 – Brasilia, Brazil – Nilson Nelson Parking Lot
1 – Belem, Brazil – Parque De Exposicoes
3 – Recife, Brazil – Parque De Exposicoes
5 – Curitiba, Brazil – Expotrade
8 – Buenos Aires, Argentina – Velez Sarsfield
10 – Santiago, Chile – Estadio Nacional
14 – San Juan, Puerto Rico – Coliseo De Puerto Rico
16 – Sunrise, Florida – Bank Atlantic Center
17 – Tampa, Florida – St Pete Times Forum
June 30 – July 3 – Roskilde, Denmark – Roskilde Festival
1 – Gothenburg, Sweden – Ullevi Stadium
6 – Oslo, Norway – Telenor
8 – Helsinki, Finland – Olympic Stadium
10 – St Petersburg, Russia – SKK Peterburgskiy
British hard rock legends IRON MAIDEN have posted a new graphic on their official website of Eddie holding the Earth in his hands, with the geographical area focusing on the North Pacific Ocean and the Indian Ocean, fuelling rumors that that band will be announcing live dates in that area early next year – either before or after their headline/Soundwave Festival run in Australia in February. The official announcement will be made on Tuesday, November 2nd at 6PM GMT.
Iron Maiden - tour announcement?
Two shows have already been rumored for February: Bali, Indonesia and Jakarta, India.
Officially confirmed dates for Maiden’s Final Frontier World Tour 2011 can be found here.
BLACK SABBATH, DEEP PURPLE, IRON MAIDEN Members Recording New Song For Charity
In 1989, BLACK SABBATH’s Tony Iommi and DEEP PURPLE’s Ian Gillan were just a few names in a long list of talent involved in the re-recording of the classic Deep Purple track ‘Smoke On The Water’. This song was re-recorded to raise money for those affected by the Leninakan earthquake that struck Armenia in 1988. In October of last year, both Iommi and Gillan travelled to Armenia to see how the funds raised had helped the local community. On their trip they visited a music school only to find it being run out of temporary accommodation, it was only location not to have been rebuilt 20 years after the earthquake had struck.
Next week Iommi and Gillan will be heading back into the studio, joined by keyboardist Jon Lord (ex-Deep Purple, WHITESNAKE) and drummer Nicko McBrain (IRON MAIDEN) to record a new track to raise money to rebuild the Armenian music school. More information about the charity single ‘Out Of My Mind’ and behind the scenes photos will follow soon.
‘Smoke On The Water’ Rock Aid Armenia video can be viewed below:
MSN /ROCK METAL TV offer an complete video report and an interview with IRON MAIDEN. Steve Harris, Bruce Dickinson, Adrian Smith, Dave Murray, Nicko McBrian and Janick Gers talk in depth about their new album, and they show an excerpt of their next video clip along with live footage.
ROCK METAL TV / MSN it´s a new online television rock and metal orientated created by Microsoft-Spain. It´s directed by Mario Ruiz from Krea Films and longtime Spanish journalist Rafa Basa (www.rafabasa.com)
Sonisphere festival landed for the second time in Finland. Even though Sonisphere was once again the biggest metal event here with over 60 000 visitors, it made more headlines for other reasons other than it’s brilliant artists. A huge storm hit the festival area and winds ripped apart one of the main stage’s support scaffolding and sent it flying into the crowd. Altogether around 40 people were injured, with three requiring hospitalization. The accident delayed the concert for a few hours and all scheduled performances on the second stage were cancelled. Iggy Pop managed to play a short acoustic set on the main stage but Motley Crue was forced to cancel its entirely show because bands instruments were completely destroyed by the storm.
Metal legends Iron Maiden released their 15th studio album “The Final Frontier” on August 16/17 and reached new heights by attaining the No. 1 sales chart position in several countries including Canada and the UK. Trax like “The Final Frontier”, “The Talisman”, “Isle of Avalon” display why Maiden remains Metal’s leading act.
While they were in Montreal in July, LoudTrax.com had the great pleasure of doing video interviews with Maiden’s legendary manager Rod Smallwood and guitarist Janick Gers.
Both interviews were done moments before they took the stage and prior to the release of the Final Frontier album. The interviews were done for the metal news site Bravewords.com and were originally posted in their “Brave Videos” section.
Legendary metal group Iron Maiden have a new song and a new single, ‘Satellite 15…The Final Frontier,’.
With its heavy rock attack guitar riffs and a sci-fi music video (produced by Darkside Animation Films), it’s clear that the group is going in a new direction (much of it since the last albums). And for a metal band that’s achieved pretty much everything possible in this world, it makes perfect sense that Iron Maiden would begin pursuing the kinds of new galactic frontiers most other bands can only dream of.
‘Satellite 15…The Final Frontier’ is the first single off of Iron Maiden’s new album, ‘The Final Frontier,’ due to hit stores Aug. 16 (Aug. 17 in US). The album will also be released in a limited edition, collectors ‘Mission Edition’ CD case, and will come with extra features like the director’s cut of the ‘Frontier’ music video, interviews with the band, photos, wallpaper and the exclusive game ‘Mission II: Rescue & Revenge.’
The brand new IRON MAIDEN video for ‘The Final Frontier’, the title track from the band’s forthcoming album, can now be seen below.
For diehard fans, the previously revealed tracklist for The Final Frontier (found below) now features the song credits:
‘Satellite 15… The Final Frontier’ (Smith/Harris)
‘El Dorado’ (Smith/Harris/Dickinson)
‘Mother Of Mercy’ (Smith/Harris)
‘Coming Home’ (Smith/Harris/Dickinson)
‘The Alchemist’ (Gers/Harris/Dickinson)
‘Isle Of Avalon’ (Smith/Harris)
‘The Talisman’ (Gers/Harris)
‘The Man Who Would Be King’ (Murray/Harris)
‘When The Wild Wind Blows’ (Harris)
The release date for The Final Frontier is now confirmed for Monday, August 16th. The new album features artwork illustrated by Melvyn Grant and, to mark the occasion, the band have made special arrangements for one new album track ‘El Dorado’ to be made available Worldwide as a FREE digital download MP3 with immediate effect.
Let the onlsaught begin. Footage from IRON MAIDEN’s June 9th kick-off show in Dallas, TX for The Final Frontier North American tour is available below:
The setlist on the night was as follows:
‘The Wicker Man’
‘The Ghost Of The Navigator’
‘Brighter Than a Thousand Suns’
‘The Reincarnation of Benjamin Breeg’
‘These Colours Don’t Run’
‘No More Lies’
‘Brave New World’
‘Fear Of The Dark’
‘Number Of the Beast’
‘Hallowed Be Thy Name’
Remaining dates on the tour are as follows:
11 – Houston, TX – The Woodlands
12 – San Antonio, TX – AT&T Center
14 – Denver, CO – Fiddler’s Green Amphitheater
16 – Albuquerque, NM – Journal Pavilion
17 – Phoenix, AZ – Cricket Pavilion
19 – San Bernardino, CA – San Manuel Amphitheater
20 – Concord, CA – Sleep Train Pavilion
22 – Auburn, WA – White River Amphitheater
24 – Vancouver, BC – GM Place
26 – Edmonton, AB – Rexall Place
29 – Saskatoon, SK – Credit Union Centre
3 – Toronto, ON – Molson Amphitheater
6 – Ottawa, ON – Blues Fest
7 – Montreal, QC – Bell Centre
9 – Quebec City, QC – International Summer Festival
11 – Holmdel, NJ – PNC Bank Arts Center
12 – New York City – Madison Square Garden
14 – Pittsburgh, PA – Post Gazette Pavilion
15 – Cleveland, OH – Blossom Music Center
17 – Detroit, MI – DTE Music Theatre
18 – Chicago, IL – First Midwest Bank Amphitheater
20 – Washington DC – Nissan Pavilion
A widget for IRON MAIDEN’s forthcoming new studio album, The Final Frontier, can be found below.
The release date for Iron Maiden’s new studio album, The Final Frontier, is now confirmed for Monday, August 16th.
The new album features artwork illustrated by Melvyn Grant and, to mark the occasion, the band have made special arrangements for one new album track ‘El Dorado’ to be made available Worldwide as a FREE digital download MP3 with immediate effect. Click here for your free download. US fans, visit this location.
Iron Maiden’s new single, ‘El Dorado’, is now available for streaming via YouTube. Check it out below.
Singer Bruce Dickinson explains, “‘El Dorado’ is a preview of the forthcoming studio album. As we will be including it in the set of our Final Frontier World Tour (which opens in Dallas on June 9th) we thought it would be great to thank all our fans and get them into The Final Frontier mood by giving them this song up front of the tour and album release.”
Once again tens of thousands of lunatic metal freaks travelled from all over the world to the small German village located in the middle of the beautiful northern German countryside. The small peaceful Wacken literally goes upside down when nearly 80.000 conquer the village during one weekend in a year. Wacken Open Air celebrated its 19th birthday from the 31st of July to the 2nd of August, whose biggest headliner ever in the history of Wacken was Iron Maiden. Despite Iron Maiden being the biggest name on the bill, however there were tons of other interesting and fascinating names.
Brat: The mass convergence of catholic youth in Sydney for World Youth Day the week Ray and I left brought a smile to my face and a feeling of warmth as I realised it wouldn’t be long until I was part of a similar pilgrimage but to Hamburg Germany and with two major differences—where Sydney was awash with colourful youth, Hamburg would be invaded by a swarm of black; and the trolley suitcases carrying clothing would instead be trolleys full of beer; songs of the gospel would be replaced by metal anthems. They came to worship at the cross—we to worship at the flaming longhorn but we all would display our nations’ flags proudly.
Tickets for W:O:A 2008 sold phenomenally fast. The special edition X-mas pack with extra goodie bag sold out before I could take a long breath after my 2007 trip. By February the official festival ticket seller was “SOLD OUT”. Suddenly the ebay market was flooded with tickets with one ticket reaching a record price of 800 British Pounds—obscene. Even in July with less than 1 month before the festival, there was an average of 5 new listings a day for tickets, which nullified all “SOLD OUT” credibility. (Brat)
The following are a series of interviews done with all the members of Iron Maiden just prior to the U.S. release of the watershed 5th album, Powerslave, circa Autumn of 1984. At the time, the band was also in the midst of touring Europe in support of the same album. (The tour had already taken them “Behind the Iron Curtain” into Poland, a first for a western heavy rock band at the time, and an event which also resulted in a public relations coup and a documentary later shown on MTV, etc.)