My favorite albums and shows of 2014

My favorite albums and shows of 2014

Alright you guys, I know you’re probably all burned out on the year-end list business. But I like to wait until the year is over and I’ve had some time to really let things sink in, and now I’m finally ready to unleash my full list of favorite records and shows. As with my list every year, Gilead Media releases are disqualified, because I take my releases all too personally and they would dominate the list.

These are in no specific order, except for maybe the first three. I think those three are a cut above everything else for me. After that, though, it all depends on what sort of mood I’m in at the time.


Yob – Clearing The Path To Ascend CD/2LP (Neurot Recordings/Relapse Records)
I admittedly wasn’t a huge fan of Yob during their first phase. Sure, I heard their records, but they didn’t really speak to me as they seemed to with others. It wasn’t until Atma that I really understood what they were doing, and even that one took some time. It was like I wasn’t sure what to think of it, but I couldn’t stop listening. Now, with Clearing The Path To Ascend, I feel like Yob have put together a career-defining album. There’s so much to love about this record, but when it comes down to it the album is just unbelievably powerful. If I put this on when I’m in the right mood, at the right moment, there is very little in life that compares to the feeling that invokes. I wasn’t going to pick an album of the year, but this is probably it.

Crippled Black Phoenix – White Light Generator digital (Mascot Label Group)
I can’t believe this came out in March and I didn’t hear about it until November. My life is truly lesser for losing those months of potential listening. I hadn’t heard much from Crippled Black Phoenix since I stumbled upon 200 Tons Of Bad Luck, and after that I just forgot to keep up with them. Uhhh, big surprise dudes. This record is incredible. There are numerous tracks on White Light Generator that gave me chills upon first listen. For me it totally feels like the best era of Pink Floyd, mixed with the best album Mogwai never released. I don’t know anyone else doing this sort of thing right now. Just go find it and listen. Now.

Young Widows – Easy Pain LP (Temporary Residence)
I wasn’t sure about Easy Pain when it was released. It is so different from In & Out of Youth…, and not at all the direction I expected the band to go. But after a couple listens the record felt like the perfect next step. Every time a new track starts, it’s my favorite track on the record. Everything is so noisy with great energy, an incredibly unique rock record.

Bohren & der Club of Gore – Piano Nights CD (Ipecac)
My pal Adam Tucker told me about this one at the beginning of the 2014. I was always a fan of this band, but on a much more casual basis. Piano Nights totally drew me in, and I couldn’t stop listening to it. It was the only album in my car CD player for about 6 months, actually I think it’s still in there now. And the louder I listen to it, the more I enjoy it. Seriously, listen to this really loud. There are so many little nuances in there that you can only hear at high volume levels or with headphones. Don’t get me wrong, the record is still super good at a more reasonable volume, but whoa. Loud.

Vorde – Vorde LP (Fallen Empire/Psychic Violence)
Whenever the drummer of Fell Voices is behind the drums I’m always eager to give the record a listen. Throughout this year I heard very few black metal records that actually felt creepy, but Vorde nail it again and it again. This record has a distinct and unique atmosphere that is darker than almost anything else I’ve heard all year, and sits far above the ever-growing sea of new black metal albums. The closing track on this album has to be heard to be believed. I don’t even want to try explaining to you why I love that particular track so much. Just go listen to the entire record and feel it for yourself.

Grouper – Ruins LP (Kranky)
A Sunday morning in autumn. Rainy, cloudy, and cold. Alone. Lying around beneath a pile of blankets with a cup of hot coffee. That’s how this album feels to me. Somber and wonderful, just let it wash over you.

The Body – I Shall Die Here LP (produced by The Haxan Cloak, RVNG Intl.)
I found out this was going to be a thing shortly after I discovered The Haxan Cloak’s Excavation, and I could barely believe my eyes as I read about it. One of my favorite bands (and two of the best dudes) pairing up with one of my most exciting new discoveries. What a dream! A destructive, decaying dream. It’s the perfect mix of heavy + electronic, crushing tone and subtle ambience. This is a critical album of total misery.

Panopticon – Roads to the North 2LP (Bindrune Recordings)
I’ve been real into Panopticon for a long time, and I was glad to see this one take a different approach, but with elements familiar to long-time fans. It’s difficult to put into words how this album has its impact on me. It’s simply a really great record that is oozing with intense personal emotion. One of the most aesthetically dynamic (yet cohesive) metal records I’ve ever heard.

Comeback Kid – Die Knowing LP (Victory Records)
Yah, I know this is the odd record out on my list. Fun fact, I grew up super into tons of hardcore and tough-guy stuff. All I’m going to say here is this: Die Knowing takes me back to a time when I was younger and growing up in an age/stage of hardcore before the fashion bubble. It takes me back to all the moshy tough-guy stuff I loved, nay, still love. When I’m in the mood for Buried Alive’s Death of Your Perfect World, this usually goes on immediately afterwards… and then watch my Hellfest 2000 VHS tape.

Young And In The Way – When Life Comes To Death LP (Deathwish Inc)
I didn’t know exactly what to expect with this album. There was a lot of hype around the band, and I loved the cover art. That was the extent of my knowledge going in. After a few listens I could not stop, the songs were constantly stuck in my head. It has all the familiar ferocity of hardcore that I’ve always loved, with a heavy dose of visceral black metal thrown on top of it. I’ve heard all sorts of catch-phrase genre tags attached to this, but to me it’s just dark, and heavy, and intense.

OFF! – Wasted Years LP (Vice)
This is definitely not the typical album to end up on my turntable, that’s for sure. I avoided listening to OFF! for a long time because of all the hype around the band, and because generally bands that have a sound this straight forward are usually not my thing. But I got past it and gave it a whirl, to find that the band rules. I was so stoked for Wasted Years when the release was announced, and it definitely did not disappoint.

Mutilation Rites – Harbinger LP (Prosthetic Records)
It’s no secret that I love this band, and I was definitely bummed out when I discovered I wasn’t able to release the vinyl edition of this new album, because their continued progression rules. And the inclusion of Ryan’s low vocals (bassist, first studio recording since the joined the band) on this record totally rule. Mutilation Rites continue their reign as one of the best U.S. black metal bands on the new record, and hold position some of the best dudes I know.

Earth – Primitive & Deadly 2LP (Southern Lord)
This album is such a perfect evolution for this band. I heard some people pooping on the vocals throughout this album, but I think they’re exactly what they should be. The last thing I wanted from Earth was another album that ran too close to what they’ve been doing since Bees… so I was immediately in love with the heavier nature of this record. Wonderful.


Sunn + Ulver – Terrestrials LP (Southern Lord)
Wolves In The Throne Room – Celestite 2LP (Artemesia)
Yautja – Songs Of Descent LP (Forcefield)
Blut Aus Nord – Memoria Vetusta III: Saturnian Poetry 2LP (Debemur Morti Productions)
Marissa Nadler – July LP (Sacred Bones)
Angel Olsen – Burn Your Fire For No Witness LP (Jagjaguwar)
Falls Of Rauros – Believe In No Coming Shore CD (Bindrune Recordings)
Lantlos – Melting Sun LP (Prophecy Productions)
Old Man Gloom – The Ape of God LPs (Sige/Profound Lore)
Inter Arma – The Cavern 12″ (Relapse Records)
Swans – To Be Kind 3LP (Young God Records)
Primitive Man/Hessian – Split LP (Hypertension Records)
Beck – Morning Phase LP (Capitol)
NehruvianDoom – NehruvianDoom LP (Lex Records)

Songs: Ohia – Didn’t It Rain 2LP (Secretly Canadian)
Songs: Ohia – Journey On: Collected Singles 7″ box set (Secretly Canadian)
American Analog Set – Know By Heart LP (Barsuk)
Turmoil – The Process Of… LP (Escapist Records)
Mineral – End Serenading 2LP (ARRCO)
Slint – Spiderland LP (Touch & Go)
MF Doom – Operation Doomsday (Metal Face)
Buried Alive – Death of Your Perfect World LP (Victory)
Deltron3030 – Deltron3030 2LP (Deltron Partners)
Earth – Hex or Printing in the Infernal Method 2LP (Southern Lord)

Gilead Fest in its entirety
Circle Takes the Square & Seven Days of Samsara – Riverwest Public House, Milwaukee, WI
Songs: Ohia – A Memorial electric Co. – The Hideout, Chicago, IL
Gregory Alan Isakov – Grand Opera House, Oshkosh, WI
Suicide Machines & Arms Aloft – The Metal Grill, Milwaukee, WI
Arms Aloft & Guerilla Poubelle – Kegger’s, Green Bay, WI
Rocky Votolato – House show, Chicago, IL (where my old friend + long-time Gilead helper Scott got engaged)
Mineral & Into It. Over It. – Double Door, Chicago, IL

Biggest Gilead Media distro update ever

Biggest Gilead Media distro update ever



Dudes. This is the biggest update I’ve ever made to the online store. Get at these, my shelves are bursting at the seams. So many amazing titles have arrived, Songs: ohia re-issue, the new Sleep, Swans re-issue, a bunch of classic metal records, huge restock on Fallen Empire stuff, and that incredible new Blut Aus Nord record. GET: STORE

Aevangelist – Writhes in the Murk LP (import) – $20.00
Anjou – Anjou LP – $16.15
At the Gates – With Fear I Kiss the Burning Darkness LP (import) – $23.60
At the Gates – Terminal Spirit Disease LP (import) – $23.60
At the Gates – The Red in the Sky is Ours LP (import) – $23.60
Bathory – Blood Fire Death 180g LP (import) – $26.75
Bathory – Hammerheart 180g 2LP (import) – $31.30
Bathory – Octagon 180g LP (import) – $26.75
Bathory – The Return of Darkness 180g LP (import) – $26.75
Bathory – Twilight of the Gods 180g 2LP (import) – $32.35
Andrew Bird – Things Are really Great LP – $16.60
Blut Aus Nord – Memoria Vetusta III: Saturnian Poetry LP (import) – $20.00
Burial Hex – The Hierophant LP – $19.00
Carpathian Forest – Strange Old Brew LP (import) – $23.60
Carpathian Forest – Black Shining Leather LP (import) – $23.60
Carpathian Forest – Through Chasm, Caves and Titan Woods 180g LP (import) – $23.60
Carpathian Forest – Defending the Throne of Evil 2LP (import) – $32.00
Chuck Cirino – Chopping Mall OST LP – $26.90
John Carpenter – They Live OST LP – $25.50
John Carpenter – Halloween III OST LP – $25.50
The Cramps – A Date With Elvis LP – $16.45
The Cramps – Big Beat From Badsville LP – $16.45
The Cramps – Fiends of Dope Island LP – $16.45
The Cramps – Look Mom No Head LP – $16.45
The Cramps – Rockinnreelininaucklandnewzealandxxx LP – $16.45
The Cramps – Smell of Female LP – $16.45
The Cramps – Stay Sick LP – $16.45
Darkthrone – A Blaze in the Northern Sky LP (import) – $23.60
Darkthrone – Panzerfaust LP (import) – $23.60
Darkthrone – Transilvanian Hunger LP (import) – $23.60
Darkthrone – Under a Funeral Moon 180g LP (import) – $23.60
Death Fortress – Among the Ranks of the Unconquerable LP – $14.50
Roky Erickson – The Evil One 2LP – $24.10
Full of Hell + Merzbow 2CD – $13.65
Goblin – Suspiria OST LP – $30.20
Infestus – The Reflecting Void LP (import) – $20.00
Katatonia – For Funerals to Come LP (import) – $23.60
Katatonia – Viva Emptiness 180g LP (import) – $23.60
Katatonia – Dance of Decemeber Souls 2LP (import) – $27.90
Krieg – The Isolationist 2LP (import) – $15.00
Manes – Be All End All LP (import) – $20.00
Henry Manfredini – Friday the 13th OST LP – $26.90
Menace Ruine – Venus Armata CD – $13.50
Modest Mouse – Sad Sappy Sucker LP – $16.00
Modest Mouse – The Fruit That Ate Itself LP – $16.00
Modest Mouse – This is a Long Drive For… 2LP – $25.70
Mono – Rays of Darkness – $16.70
Mono – The Last Dawn – $16.70
Old Man Gloom – Ape of God CD (PFL145) – $10.00
Old Man Gloom – Ape of God CD (PFL145.5) – $10.00
Pharmakon – Bestial Burden LP – $15.50
Douglas Pipes – Trick ‘r Treat OST 2LP – $30.20
Ruine – Demo 7″ – $5.50 (doom from members of Mutilation Rites)
Sleep – Volume One LP – $16.45
Sleep – Dopesmoker 2LP – $28.00
Sleep – Clarity 12″ – $18.75
Songs: Ohia – Didn’t it Rain 2LP (Deluxe re-issue w/bonus tracks) – $17.95
Sons Of Crom – Riddle of Steel LP (import) – $20.00
Swans – Filth LP – $16.60
Swans – To Be Kind 3LP – $27.00
Taake – Bjoergvin LP (import) – $23.60
Theologian – Some Things Have To Be Endured LP – $18.50
Today Is The Day – Animal Mother LP – $14.85
Usnea – Random Cosmic Violence 2LP – $25.00
Vorde – Vorde LP – $15.50
Winterfylleth – The Divination of Antiquity 2LP (import) – $32.00
Winterfylleth – The Threnody of Triumph 2LP (import) – $23.00
Wylve/The Rain in Endless Fall – Split LP – $18.75
Xothist – Simulacrum – $14.50
Yautja – Songs of Descent LP – $13.00
Yautja – Songs of Descent CD – $8.00
Yob – Clearing the Path to Ascend 2LP (Red vinyl) – $25.00
Young Widows – Old Wounds LP – $12.50

Argentinum Astrum – Malleus Maleficarum LP – $11.00
Bastard Sapling – Dragged From Our Restless Trance LP – $15.00
The Haxan Cloak – Excavation 2LP – $18.90
Lluvia – Premonicion De Guerra LP – $19.00
Magnolia Electric Co. – What Comes After the Blues LP – $13.50
Magnolia Electric Co. – Fading Trails Lp – $13.30
Magnolia Electric Co. – Josephine LP – $13.00
Neurosis – Honor Found in Decay 2LP – $35.00
Jason Molina – Let Me Go LP+CD – $13.50
Jason Molina – Pyramid Electric Co. LP – $15.00
Marissa Nadler – July LP – $14.50
Songs: Ohia – Hecla & Griper LP – $13.30
Songs: Ohia – The Lioness LP – $13.30
Songs: Ohia – Ghost Tropic LP – $13.50
Swans – The Seer 3LP – $27.00
Swans – My Father Will Guide Me… LP – $16.60
Taurus – No/thing – $18.50
Thergothon – Stream From the Heavens LP  (import) – $21.30
Tukaaria – Raw to the Rapine LP – $14.00
Velnias – Runeeater CD – $18.00
Windhand – Soma 2LP – $25.00
Windhand – Windhand LP – $16.00
Young Widows – In and Out of Youth and Lightness 2LP – $18.20

Store update: New arrivals Nov 22, 2014

Store update: New arrivals Nov 22, 2014

Added these beasts to the store today, get em!

Anjou – Anjou LP – $16.15
Coffinworm – IV.I.VIII LP – $19.00
Death Fortress – Among the Ranks of the Unconquerable LP – $14.50
Menace Ruine – Venus Armata CD – $13.50
Modest Mouse – Sad Sappy Sucker LP – $16.00
Modest Mouse – The Fruit That Ate Itself LP – $16.00
Usnea – Random Cosmic Violence 2LP – $25.00
Vorde – Vorde LP – $15.50
Wylve/The Rain in Endless Fall – Split LP – $18.75
Xothist – Simulacrum – $14.50
Yob – Clearing the Path to Ascend 2LP (Red vinyl) – $25.00

Implodes test pressings!

Implodes test pressings!

Implodes Test Pressing

Test pressing arrival day is still one of my favorite things about releasing vinyl. I used to get all stressed out about it, would always just dwell on the possibility of bad test pressings. But I’ve learned over time to just roll with it and think of how exciting this step of the process is.

Today the test pressings arrived for the Implodes – Reverser EP. A beauty of a 12″ cut at 45 rpm by Chicago Mastering Service. I’m just finished side A, and it sounds amazing.

I’m hoping we will have some tunes online for you to check out soon, in advance of the album release. This is definitely something that’s outside of Gilead Media’s wheelhouse these days, but I feel like it still fits in with the overall aesthetic and concept of where the label is today and will be in the future. Plus it’s just a fucking great record.