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Old 12-15-2012, 09:39 AM   #45
Reaper16 Reaper16 is offline
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9. Royal Thunder – CVI

Hard rock album of the year, right here. Hell, it’s the Southern Rock album of the year, too (apologies to Lee Bains III & the Glory Fires, who are awesome but whose album missed mu top 30 because of production). Royal Thunder is a Sabbath-inspired rock quartet from Georgia and they are goddamned heavy. They’re fronted by Mini Parsons (she also plays bass), whose mid-range voice works so beautifully with the sludgy guitar riffs. She’s like a banshee drunk off of bourbon. These songs are timeless in a way; these vocal lines and riffs would play just as well in the ‘70s as they do today. You could call them revivalist, but I just call them good. The soaring vocals, the bar-smell atmosphere. The first half of this album is seriously as good as anything released in 2012. Anything. The back half falls off a bit for various reasons – redundancy, lack of catchiness, etc. – but that first half got wore the hell out on my iTunes. They can do short and sweet (“Whispering World,” “No Good”), or they can masterfully use atmosphere and repetition to craft a killer 10 minute long song (“Shake and Shift”). Opening track “Parsonz Curse” is a top 3 song of 2012 for me. The slow build, the driving vocals, the beautiful crescendo of syrup-thick guitars and layered chorus vocals; this song is so ****ing good. This is a band to watch out for in the future, for sure.





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