Bye Bye 2012

31 12 2012

Yes kids, it’s that time again where we wave buh bye to the year and welcome in a new one. Instead of words this NYE,  I’ve decided to post up some pictures which sum up the last 12 months before finishing off with my top 20 LPs of 2012.

Thanks to all the bands, promoters, PRs and mates who hooked me up with records, gigs and good times.Here’s to 2013.

2012: The Year In Photos (And The Odd You Tube Link)

May 13, 2012. I’ll remember this day until they put me in a pine box.Kinda crazy to think that long after we’re dead, people will still be able to see us on this footage of City winning their first Premier league title. Can you spot me and my Da? Handy hint: We’re under the giant purple arrow….

Chilling like villains backstage at the Odyssey with the WWE alongside my brother and nephew.Also-big thanks to the Celtic Warrior Sheamus for hooking us up and being an absolute hero.

Here’s a clip of Therapy? playing ‘Exiles’ at the Tall Ships in Dublin this summer.Y’know…I might refer to myself as “the wonderful Edwin McFee” for the duration of 2013 (the quality’s amazing, eh…..?). Mad props to the Therapy? boys.

My fanzine, Generation Why, (which started the ball rolling on this mental job of mine) celebrated its tenth birthday.

There was a lot of party rocking in a variety of different places with a number of different people this year.Here’s to more adventures.

I finally got that Iron Maiden mask I’ve always wanted.

…and that Betty Banner tattoo I’ve always been looking for too.

And lastly (but certainly not, um, leastly…) here’s my Top 20 LPs of 2012.It’s been a great year for records and hopefully 2013 will be just as good. Happy New Year and Up the Irons!

1) Therapy? ‘A Brief Crack Of Light’

2) Gallows ‘Gallows’

3) Hot Water Music ‘Exister’

4) Best Coast ‘The Only Place’

5) The Gaslight Anthem ‘Handwritten’

6) Wolfsbane ‘Wolfsbane Saves The World’

7) Triggerman ‘Hail To The River Gods’

8) JD McPherson ‘Signs And Signifiers’

9) Cloud Nothings ‘Attack On Memory’

10) Hour Of 13 ‘333’

11) Cheap Freaks ‘Bury Them All’

12) The Jim Jones Revue ‘The Savage Heart’

13) Bobby Conn ‘Macaroni’

14) James Levy And The Blood Red Rose ‘Pray To Be Free’

15) Mystery Jets ‘Radlands’

16) DZ Deathrays ‘Bloodstreams’

17) Master And Dog ‘Master And Dog’

18) Band Of Horses ‘Mirage Rock’

19) Baby Woodrose ‘Third Eye Surgery’

20) Alabama Shakes ‘Boys & Girls’

Metal Hammer Top 20 Albums Of The Year

13 12 2012

The Christmas/end of year Metal Hammer is out this week and as is customary, the Top 50 albums of 2012 (voted for by writers for the mag like myself) are revealed.Sadly this year, there wasn’t enough room to print the individual lists of all the scribes (boo!) but since I’m awful good to you Dead Horse readers I’ve posted up mine below.

Towards the end of the month I’ll also post up the less genre-specific list I sent to the other mags I write for,but for now, without further ado, here’s my pick of the heaviest records of ’12.

01) Therapy? ‘A Brief Crack Of Light’ (Blast)

02) Gallows ”Gallows’ (Venn Records)

03) Wolfsbane ‘Wolfsane Save The World’ (Cargo)

04) Triggerman ‘Hail To The River Gods’ (Triggerlad Records)

05) Hour Of 13 ‘333’ (Earache)

06) Down ‘Down IV Part 1: Purple EP’ (Roadrunner)

07) Pulled Apart By Horses ‘Tough Love’ (Transgressive)

08) Gacys Threads ‘The Ignorance Of Purity’ (Savour Your Scene)

09) Turbonegro ‘Sexual Harassment’ (Volcom)

10) Trash Talk ‘119’ (Odd Future Records)

11) The Cult ‘Choice Of Weapon’ (Cooking Vinyl)

12) Rolo Tomassi ‘Astraea’ (Destination Moon)

13) Tankard ‘A Girl Called Cerveza’ (Plastic Head)

14) Pelican ‘Ataraxia/Taraxis’ (Southern Lord)

15) Purified In Blood ‘Flight Of A Dying Sun’ (Indie Recordings)

16) Orange Goblin ‘Eulogy For The Damned’ (Plastic Head)

17) Witchsorrow ‘God Curse Us All’ (Rise Above Records)

18) Paranoid Visions ‘Escape From The Austerity Complex'(Plastic Head)

19) Steve Harris ‘British Lion’ (EMI)

20) Corrosion Of Conformity ‘Corrosion Of Conformity'(Plastic Head)

Metal Hammer Interview: Hour Of 13

13 07 2012

Here’s an unedited re-print of an interview I did with Hour Of 13 that ran in Metal Hammer recently.

Fresh Meat

Hour Of 13

They say that the road to hell is paved with good intentions and that hoary old cliché most certainly holds true for North Carolina/Connecticut-based doom duo Hour of 13. You see the band, who unashamedly worship at the altar of all things Sabbath and NWOBHM-related, have survived not one, but two splits with their singer Phil Swanson over the last few years and their career to date has been rather combustible. But, like any good horror movie monster, the frontman returned once again last winter at a time when we thought the original line-up was officially dead and buried and according to the vocalist this latest reunion with multi-instrumentalist Chad Davis was all sorted with a simple phone call.

“Chad called, said he wanted to write and record a new record and I said yes,” he says. “That’s all it took and that’s all it’s about really-writing music and making a record. Everything else is just bullshit politics and only comes into play after the record is made.”

“The record” in question is their recently released, titanic sounding third album 333 and, even though the pair live in two different States, Swanson reveals that the distance actually helps bring the best out in the band.

“If the band can stand the distance, then I think it makes for a much stronger union. We’re not in each other’s faces all the time and driving each other crazy. It’s like when you live together as a family-you are always at each other’s throats, but when that family separates there is suddenly a deeper respect for that bond.”

A decidedly British sounding effort (“It’s all about the NWOBHM, without it there’s really nothing of importance in my mind,” he says) their Earache debut also sees them once again rekindle their love affair for the darker side of life and the singer reveals that his fascination with fear has been with him all his life.

“It’s always been about horror with me,” he concludes. “It’s hard to say why I’ve been attracted to it. Maybe it was being brought up by my grandmother and her having Dark Shadows on the television as a child or maybe it’s facing deeper fears I had as I was stricken with night terrors growing up. All this could be me just reliving that.”




LINE-UP: Phil Swanson (vocals), Chad Davis (instruments)

SOUND LIKE: If King Diamond, Black Sabbath and Maiden mascot Eddie were at a Hallowe’en party, 333 is the record they’d play on the death deck.

CURRENT RELEASE: 333 (Earache Records, 2012)


Metal Hammer Review: Hour Of 13

18 06 2012

Here’s a reprint of my review of the amazing Hour of 13 record that ran in Metal Hammer.




Comprising of seven molten tracks of doom-laden, NWOBHM-infused metal, North Carolina duo Hour Of 13’s third record is inspired by all things diabolical (think “the Devil himself,” rather than “David Cameron”) and the always welcome spectre of Black Sabbath haunts the music from start to finish. An unashamedly old school affair, 333 is massively influenced by the likes of Angel Witch and Samhain-era Danzig and it’s an epic and hellaciously heavy record that features countless twists and turns throughout 50minutes. Opening with the mighty Deny The Cross, the sprawling track sets the standard for what’s to come and from there it’s a riff-fuelled riot that never lets up for a single second. Oozing eeriness from every crevice, the likes of The Burning and Lucky Bones are mammoth numbers which feature sterling vocals from Phil Swanson that could give Kind Diamond himself the willies and his crooked croon on Who’s To Blame is worth the price of admission alone. Clearly the Devil really does have the best tunes (not that we ever doubted it, mind). [8]