Top X

People who have their own web sites often think their tastes are somehow special and interesting, so…

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1986

Metallica – “Master of Puppets”
Queensrÿche – “Rage for Order”
Malmsteen, Yngwie J. – “Trilogy”
Slayer – “Reign in Blood”
Sodom – “In the Sign of Evil”
Kreator – “Pleasure to Kill”
Venom – “Possessed”
Racer X – “Street Lethal”
Satriani, Joe – “Not of this Earth”
Roth, David Lee – “Eat ‘Em And Smile”

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1987

Cacophony – “Speed Metal Symphony”
Rush – “Hold your Fire”
Sodom – “Persecution Mania”
King Diamond – “Abigail”
David Chastain – “Instrumental Variations”
Savatage – “Hall of the Mountain King”
Helloween – “Walls of Jericho”
Anthrax – “Among the Living”
Napalm Death – “Scum”
Saga – “In Transit”

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1988

Metallica – “…And Justice for All”
Queensrÿche – “Operation Mindcrime”
Jason Becker – “Perpetual Burn”
Sodom – “Mortal Way of Live”
Jarre – “Revolutions”
Malmsteen – “Odyssey”
Vangelis – “Direct”
Flotsam & Jetsam – “No Place for Disgrace”
Vendetta – “Brain Damage”
Iron Maiden – “Seventh Son of a Seventh Son”

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1989

Malmsteen – “Trial by Fire”
Rush – “Show of Hands”
Faith no More – “The Real Thing”
Satriani – “Flying in a Blue Dream”
Sepultura – “Beneath the Remains”
Sodom – “Agent Orange”
Obituary – “Slowly we Rot”
Mucky Pup – “A Boy in a Man’s World”
Annihilator – “Alice in Hell”
Jean Michel Jarre – “Live”

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1990

Megadeth – “Rust in Piece”
Obituary – “Cause of Death”
Entombed – “Left Hand Path”
Steve Vai – “Passion and Warfare”
Yngwie Malmsteen – “Eclipse”
Queensrÿche – “Empire”
Napalm Death – “Harmony Corruption”
Gwar – “Scumdogs of the Universe”
Led Zeppelin – “Remasters”
Fields of the Nephilim – “Earth Inferno”

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1991

Metallica – “Metallica”
Fear of God – “Within the Veil”
Slayer – “Decade of Aggression”
Sepultura – “Arise” (their best)
Paradise Lost – “Gothic”
Fates Warning – “Parallels”
Mads Eriksen – “Storyteller”
My Dying Bride – “Symphonaire…”
Entombed – “Clandestine”
Pearl Jam – “Ten” (the only grunge band really worth its salt)

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1992

Dream Theater – “Images and Words”
Paradise Lost – “Shades of God”
Megadeth – “Countdown to Extinction”
Joe Satriani – “The Extremist”
Pan-Thy-Monium – “Dawn of Dreams”
My Dying Bride – “As the Flower Withers”
Whistler Courbois Whistler – “Whistler Courbois Whistler”
The Gathering – “Always…”
Pantera – “Vulgar Display of Power”
Rage Against the Machine – “Rage Against the Machine”

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1993

Anathema – “Serenades”
My Dying Bride – “Turn Loose the Swans”
Mercyful Fate – “In the Shadows”
Paradise Lost – “Icon”
Metallica – “Live Shit Binge & Purge” box
Bjørk – “Debut”
Rush – “Counterparts”
Van Halen – “Live, Right Here, Right Now”
Gorefest – “The Eindhoven Insanity”
Meat Loaf – “Bat out of Hell II”

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1994

Septic Flesh – “Mystic Places of Dawn”
Dream Theater – “Awake”
Queensrÿche – “Promised Land”
At The Gates – “Terminal Spirit Disease”
Nightfall – “Macabre Sunsets”
Mercyful Fate – “Time”
Orphaned Land – “Sahara”
Napalm Death – “Fear Emptiness Despair”
Obituary – “World Demise”
Altar – “Youth Against Christ”

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1995

My Dying Bride – “The Angel and the Dark River”
Orphanage – “Oblivion”
Septic Flesh – “Esoptron”
Dream Theater – “A Change of Seasons” (EP)
Yngwie Malmsteen – “Magnum Opus”
Tristitia – “One with Darkness”
Celestial Season – “Solar Lovers”
The Gathering – “Mandylion”
Nightfall – “Athenian Echoes”
Paradise Lost – “Draconian Times”

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 1996

Jason Becker – “Perspective”
Cradle of Filth – “Dusk…and her Embrace”
Therion – “Theli”
Dark Tranquillity – “The Gallery”
Samael – “Passage”
Saxon – “The Eagle has Landed Part II”
Deep Purple – “Purpendicular”
My Dying Bride – “Like Gods of the Sun”
Pan-Thy-Monium – “III – Khaooos and Kon-Fus-Ion”
Orphanage – “By Time Alone”

TOP ALBUMS OF 1997 (TBA)

TOP ALBUMS OF 1998 (TBA)

TOP ALBUMS OF 1999 (TBA)

TOP 25 ALBUMS OF THE 20TH CENTURY

1 Jason Becker – “Perspective”
2 Metallica – “…And Justice for All”
3 Queensryche – “Operation: Mindcrime”
4 Deep Purple – “Made in Japan”
5 Dream Theater – “Metropolis Pt. 2 – Scenes from a Memory”
6 Iron Maiden – “Live after Death”
7 Kiss – “Alive II”
8 Jimi Hendrix – “Electric Ladyland”
9 Yngwie Malmsteen – “Rising Force”
10 Steve Vai – “Passion and Warfare”
11 Rainbow – “Live in Germany”
12 Judas Priest – “’98 Live Meltdown”
13 Metal Church – “Metal Church”
14 Rush – “Exit…Stage Left”
15 Cradle of Filth – “Dusk…and her Embrace”
16 Black Sabbath – “Heaven and Hell”
17 Slayer – “Decade of Aggression”
18 Emperor – “Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk”
19 Death – “The Sound of Perseverance”
20 Mercyful Fate – “Melissa”
21 Megadeth – “Rust in Piece”
22 Obituary – “Cause of Death”
23 Venom – “Black Metal”
24 Entombed – “Left Hand Path”
25 Van Halen – “Van Halen”

TOP ALBUMS OF 2000 (TBA)

TOP ALBUMS OF 2001 (TBA)

TOP ALBUMS OF 2002 (TBA)

TOP ALBUMS OF 2003 (TBA)

TOP ALBUMS OF 2004

Disillusion – Back To Times Of Splendour
Sacred Steel – Iron Blessings
My Dying Bride – Songs Of Darkness, Words Of Light
Paul Gilbert – Acoustic Samurai
Exodus – Tempo Of The Damned
Finntroll – Nattfödd
Probot – Probot

TOP ALBUMS OF 2005

Nile – Annihilation of the Wicked
Obituary – Frozen in Time
Equilibrium – Turis Fratyr
Bolt Thrower – Those once Loyal
Pure Sweet Hell – The Voyeurs of Utter Destruction
Old Man’s Child – Vermin
John Petrucci – Suspended Animation
Ordo Draconis – Camera Obscura Pt. 1: The Star Chamber Reviews

TOP ALBUMS OF 2006

Disillusion – Gloria
Katatonia – The Great Cold Distance
In Extremo – Raue Spree
Rainbow – Deutschland Tournee (Box)
Trivium – The Crusade

TOP ALBUMS OF 2007

Candlemass – King Of The Grey Islands
Dimmu Borgir – In Sorte Diaboli
Vital Remains – Icons Of Evil
Symphony X – Paradise Lost
Rush – Snakes And Arrows

TOP ALBUMS OF 2008

Candlemass – Lucifer Rising
Metallica – Death Magnetic (the Bryston mix, not the original!)
Exodus – Let there be Blood
Bloodbath – The Wacken Carnage

TOP ALBUMS OF 2009

Candlemass – Death Magic Doom
Chickenfoot – Chickenfoot
Destruction – The Curse of the Antichrist – Live in Agony
Dream Theater – Black Clouds and Silver Linings
Heaven & Hell – The Devil you Know
In Extremo – Am Goldenen Rhein
Kreator – Hordes of Chaos
Vader – Necropolis

TOP ALBUMS OF 2010

Dimmu Borgir – Abrahadabra
Opeth – Live in Concert at the Royal Albert Hall
Troll – Neo-Satanic Supremacy

TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 2011

Fleshgod Apocalypse – Agony
Mastodon – The Hunter
Septic Flesh – The Great Mass
Symphony X – Iconoclast
Vader – Welcome to the Morbid Reich

TOP ALBUMS OF 2012

Kreator – Phantom Antichrist
Rainbow – On Stage (deluxe edition)
Rush – Clockwork Angels
Saxon – Heavy Metal Thunder – Live
Van Halen – A Different Kind of Truth

TOP ALBUMS OF 2013

ReVamp – Wild Card
Queensrÿche – Queensrÿche
Carcass – Surgical Steel
Avatarium – Avatarium
Deep Purple – Now What?!

TOP ALBUMS OF 2014

Bloodbath – Grand Morbid Funeral
Mastodon – Once More ‘Round the Sun
Vader – Tibi et Igni

TOP ALBUMS OF 2015

Gruesome – Savage Land
Slayer – Repentless
Six Feet Under – Crypt of the Devil
Grave – Out of Respect for the Dead

TOP ALBUMS OF 2016

Metallica – Hardwired to Self-Destruct
Sodom – Decision Day
Vader – The Empire

TOP ALBUMS OF 2017

Cradle of Filth – Cryptoriana – The Seductiveness of Decay
Destruction – Thrash Anthems II
Mastodon – Emperor of Sand
Obituary – Obituary
Sons of Apollo – Psychotic Symphony

TOP ALBUMS OF 2018

Dimmu Borgir – Eonian
Bloodbath – The Arrow of Satan is Drawn
Phlebotomized – Deformation of Humanity
Joe Satriani – What Happens Next
Saxon – Thunderbolt

TOP ALBUMS OF 2019

Disillusion – The Liberation
Entombed – Clandestine Live
King Diamond – Songs for the Dead
Sons of Apollo – MMXX

TOP ALBUMS OF 2020

Deep Purple – Whoosh!
John Petrucci – Terminal Velocity
Six Feet Under – Nightmare of the Decomposed
Sodom – Genesis XIX
Vader – Solitude in Madness

TOP ALBUMS OF 2021 (TBA)

TOP ALBUMS OF 2022 (TBA)

TOP ALBUMS OF 2023

Metallica – 72 Seasons
Obituary – Dying of Everything

TOP BANDS

Candlemass
Cradle of Filth
Deep Purple
Dimmu Borgir
Dream Theater
Iron Maiden
Judas Priest
Kiss
Yngwie Malmsteen (until “Alchemy”)
Mastodon
Mercyful Fate
Metallica (except St. Anger!)
Monstrosity
My Dying bride
Nile
Obituary
ReVamp
Rush
Saxon
Slayer
Symphony X
Therion
Steve Vai
Venom
Vital Remains

TOP CDS *EVER*

Abattoir – “Vicious Attack”
Arcturus – “Aspera Hiems Sympfonia”
Jason Becker – “Perspective”
Borknagar – “The Olden Domain”
Covenant – “Nexus Polaris”
Cradle of Filth “Dusk…And Her Embrace”
Cradle of Filth – “Midian”
Deep Purple – “Made in Japan”
Dimmu Borgir – “Puritanical Euphoric Misanthropia”
Disillusion – “Back to Times of Splendour”
Dream Theater – “Scenes from a Memory”
Emperor – “Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk”
Fear of God – “Within the Veil”
Jimi Hendrix – “Electric Ladyland”
Immortal – “Damned in Black”
In Extremo – “Sünder Ohne Zügel”
Kiss – “Alive II”
Yngwie Malmsteen – “Rising Force”
Mastodon – “Emperor of Sand”
Metallica – “…And Justice for All”
Monstrosity – “In Dark Purity”
Nile – “Annihilation of the Wicked”
Obituary – “Cause of Death”
Queensryche – “Operation Mindcrime”
Rainbow – “Live in Germany 1976”
Vader – “Litany”

TOP UNUSUAL/UNIQUE/DIFFERENT/AVANT GARDE/INTERESTING BANDS

Elend
In Extremo
Nile
Opeth
Otyg
Pan-Thy-Monium
Sikth

TOP “WHY-DID-THEY-ADD-THAT-SHITTY-TRACK-ON-AN-OTHERWISE-EXCELLENT-CD” SONGS

“Speed of Love” (Rush “Counterparts”)
“The Silent Man” (Dream Theater “Awake”)
“Magnetic Fields Part V” (Jean Michel Jarre “Magnetic Fields”)
“Dreaming (The Romance)” (Anathema “Serenades”)
“Waiting for Cousteau” (Jean Michel Jarre “Waiting for Cousteau”)
“Glorianna” (Vangelis “Direct”)
“Behrial” (Pan-Thy-Monium “III-Khaooohs And Kon-Fus-Ion”)
…and every bit of pointless noise after x seconds/minutes of silence at the end of a CD (like, for example, on Nirvana’s “Nevermind” and (unfortunately) countless others)

TOP SCARIEST FILMS (…)

“Gothika”
“The Conjuring”
“Darkness Falls”
“The Ring”
“Alien” (well, OK, I was much younger at the time)
“Sinister”
“Lights Out”
“The Urge” (2019)

TOP WORST FILMS (…)

“Cats”
“Green Lantern”
“Movie 43”
“Zombie Flesh Eaters”
“Tank Girl”
“Splatter: Architects of Fear”
“Master of Disguise”
“Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back” (ouch!)
“Darkwolf”
“Honey”
“Sammy’s Adventure”
“Prisoners of the Ghostland”
“Lara Croft Tombraider: Cradle of Life” was pretty stupid, too

TOP ENGLISH BOOKS

Stephen King – “The Stand”
Stephen King – “Needful Things”
Douglas Adams – the Dirk Gently books
J.R.R. Tolkien- “The Lord of the Rings”
George Orwell – “1984”
Tad Williams – “Otherland” series
Stephen Donaldson – “Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever” series
John Irving – “A Prayer for Owen Meany”
John Irving – “Son of the Circus”
Hickman & Weis – “Dragonlance Chronicles” series
Guy Favriel Kay – “Fionavar Tapestry” series
Stephen Donaldson – “The Gap” series
Douglas Adams – “The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy” series (primarily the first three instalments, and definitely not the sixth part)
Terry Pratchett – “Discworld” series, especially the ones starting from “Mort”
Sebastian Faulks – “Birdsong”
Robert Jordan – “Wheel of Time” series (first 5 or 6 volumes)

TOP DUTCH BOOKS

Thomas Olde Heuvelt – “Hex”
Willem Brakman – “De Gifmenger”
Thomas Olde Heuvelt – “Orakel”

TOP CONCERTS I DIDN’T/COULDN’T VISIT BUT WOULD REALLY HAVE LIKED TO

Woodstock (1969)
Deep Purple – Japanese tour (August 1972)
Rainbow – Congresgebouw, Den Haag (18 October 1976)
Kiss (with Iron Maiden supporting) – Groenoordhallen, Leiden (5 October 1980)
Frank Zappa – Ahoy, Rotterdam (15 May 1982)
Aardschokdag (with Metallica and Venom) – IJsselhal, Zwolle (11 February 1984)
Venom – Hammersmith Odeon, London (1 June 1984)
David Lee Roth – Ahoy, Rotterdam (13 December 1988)
Dream Theater – European “Scenes from a Memory” Tour (2000)
Metallica – their December 30th anniversary shows at the Fillmore, San Francisco (2011)

TOP DIRECTORS

Stephen Spielberg
James Cameron
Renny Harlin
Terry Gilliam
Ridley Scott
Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Guy Ritchie

TOP VOCALISTS

Sharon den Adel
Ray Alder
Russell Allen
Glen Benton (best death metal vocalist by far)
Dawn Crosby
King Diamond
Ronnie James Dio (up to his very final shows)
Anneke van Giersbergen
Ian Gillan (up to the mid 70s)
James Hetfield
Floor Jansen
David Lee Roth
Vibeke Stene
Geoff Tate (until the early 90s)

TOP WORST MALE VOCALISTS

Graham Bonnett
The Great Kat
Ipek
Courtney Love
Jeff Martin
Dave Mustaine
Ozzy Osbourne
Axl Rose

TOP GUITAR PLAYERS

Jason Becker
John Petrucci
Steve Vai
Joe Satriani
Yngwie Malmsteen
Michael Romeo
Jimi Hendrix
Ritchie Blackmore
Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal
Bernd Steidl
Paul Gilbert
Daniele Gottardo
Guthrie Govan

TOP GUITAR SOLOS

“The Shed (Subtle)” – Rainbow (Ritchie Blackmore)
“Back Seat Driver” – Steeler (Yngwie Malmsteen)
“Stargazer” – Rainbow (Ritchie Blackmore)
“Gates of Babylon” – Rainbow (Ritchie Blackmore)
“Moonlight Shadow” – Mike Oldfield
“The Villa” – Dr. Mastermind (Kurt James)
“November Rain” – Guns’n’Roses (Slash) (final solos)
“Comfortably Numb” – Pink Floyd (second solo)

TOP OVERRATED GUITAR PLAYERS

Eric Clapton
Carlos Santana
Kirk Hammett
Dimebag Darrell
Jimmy Page

TOP BASSISTS

Stuart Hamm
Steve Harris
Billy Sheehan
Cronos

TOP DRUMMERS

Neil Peart
Mike Portnoy
Flo Mounier
Richard Christy
Stewart Copeland
Marco Minnemann
Doc
Dave Suzuki
Gene Hoglan
Brann Dailor
Jan Axel von Blomberg
George Kollias
Mike Mangini
Nicholas (Nick) Barker
El Estepario Siberiano

TOP KEYBOARD PLAYERS

Jens Johansson
Jordan Rudess

TOP TV SERIES

“Duckman”
“Red Dwarf”
“Walking with Dinosaurs”
“Walking with Beasts”
“The Simpsons”
“V” (and the 21st century re-imagining as well)
“Band of Brothers”
“The Sopranos”
“Friends” (my feminine side, I guess)
“My Name is Earl”
“Game of Thrones”
“Modern Family”
“Married with Children”
“Sherlock Holmes” (with Benedict Cumberbatch)
“Santa Clarita Diet”
“Modern Family”
“Westworld”
“Community”
“Dark” (well, mostly the first 2 seasons)
“Lupin”
“Paradise PD” (though it’s really quite crass)
“His Dark Materials”

TOP DISLIKES (SOMETIMES REALLY STRONG ONES)

Gnats
Spam
Blacklight
Modern R&B
Computer Viruses, Trojans, Malware, etc.
Smoking
Organised Religion
Tau whores in “Halflife Death Match”
RPG whores in “Halflife 2 Death Match”
Bling Bling
Juice Channels
MTV culture
$haron O$bourne
Talentless media whores (e.g. Paris Hilton, the Kardashians…)
Republicans
Creationists
Brexiters
The NRA
US Democracy
Donald Trump
SayAt
Auto-tune vocals
Contemporary Dutch gangsta rap
TikTok
Anti-vaxxers
Wasabi

TOP COMMODORE 64 GAMES

Wizard
Delta
Fort Apocalypse
Lode Runner (any version)
Uridium
Jumpman
Raid on Bungeling Bay
Gyruss
Summer Games
Rally Speedway
Frantic Freddie
Bandits
Commando
Who Dares Wins
Who Dares Wins II
Blue Max
Commodore Soccer
Dino Eggs

TOP ATARI ST GAMES

Blood Money
Bubble Bobble
Gods
Magic Pockets
Llamatron
Rick Dangerous
Arkanoid
Arkanoid II (The Revenge of Doh)
Super Sprint
Lemmings
Super Gridrunner
Wizball
Starball
Crystal Castles
Plutos

TOP PC GAMES

Halflife
Duke Nuke’m 3D
Gridrunner++
Halflife 2
Carmageddon
Carmageddon 2
Carmageddon Reincarnation
Dino Eggs Rebirth

TOP PC APPS

Firefox
SoulseekQT
STeem (Atari ST emulator)
Google Earth
DropBox
MP3Tag

TOP WORST PC APPS

iTunes

TOP iPad/iPHONE APPS

Shazam
Google Earth
Pocket Universe
SplashID

TOP IPAD/IPHONE GAMES

Real Racing
Real Racing 3
Plants vs Zombies
Plants vs Zombies 2
Fieldrunners
Fieldrunners 2
Fieldrunners Attack
Fruit Ninja
Cut the Rope
Asphalt 9

TOP COMMODORE 64 TUNES

Knuckle Buster (Rob Hubbard)
Master of Magic (Rob Hubbard)
Parallax (Martin Galway)
Rambo (Martin Galway)
Monty on the Run (Rob Hubbard)
Delta (Rob Hubbard)
Spellbound (Rob Hubbard)
Lightforce (Rob Hubbard)
Panther (David Whittaker)
Auf Wiedersehen Monty (Rob Hubbard & Ben Daglish)
Trap (Ben Daglish)
Thrust (Rob Hubbard)
W.A.R. (Rob Hubbard)
Comic Bakery (Martin Galway)

TOP CHARITIES

Jason Becker
World Wildlife Fund
Any Cancer Fund
Any ALS Fund

TOP THINGS I’D LIKE TO SEE HAPPEN

The design of an FPGA-based computer that can be reprogrammed via software to emulate practically any classic computer/console 100%, entirely based on memory cards
The invention of a gadget that will attract dust from your entire room, which can be easily emptied
The invention of a gadget that *really* gets rid of gnats in a way that is safe for pets and humans
An vaccine against viruses in general (not just Covid, but also Malaria and whatever else)

TOP THINGS I’D DO IF I WERE TO WIN A GAZILLION (YAY MATERIALISM!)

Stop working more than one or two days a week
Try my hand at creative writing again
Buy two “Saarloos Wolfshonden” (which actually appears to be “Saarlooswolfhond” in English)
Learn modern Greek, buy an airconditioned (!) place in Greece with a view of the sea (or maybe learn Italian instead, and buy a place on the Amalfi coast)
Donate significantly to the charities mentioned above
Get a 1959 “Brock/Sapra” sunburst Gibson Les Paul guitar
Get the 1954 sunburst Fender Stratocaster serial #0387 from Yasuhiko Iwanade’s “The Galaxy of Strats”, or one very much like it
Get a 1989 Custom Shop 35th Anniversary Stratocaster
Get a MIJ 1997 Ritchie Blackmore signature model Stratocaster with black plastic parts
Get an original 1958 korina Gibson Explorer
Get a 1978 B.C. Rich Bich Koa double neck
Get a Music Man John Petrucci signature guitar in pearl redburst, with 7 strings, tremolo, JP logo at 1st fret and piezo bridge
Get a life-size replica or even an original of a mature T. rex skull fossil
Get a Volvo XC70 2.5T in Black Sapphire Metallic
Get a Chrysler PT Cruiser 2.4i GT Turbo in Onyx Green Pearl
Make a trip around the world (and at least see Grand Canyon, Taj Mahal, Potala Palace, Great Wall of China, The Shwedagon Pagoda, Mont Saint-Michel, Machu Picchu and The Great Barrier Reef)

TOP REASONS WHY I’D LIKE TO BE PAUL GILBERT

He can play the guitar really, really well
He seems to be rather a nice guy
He is creative and has a great sense of humour
He probably has enough money to be able only to do things he likes
He has quite a few guitars
He has more hair than me 🙂

TOP REGRETS

Not personally witnessing the fall of the Berlin wall (I was at the Amiga Messe in Cologne, Germany, for my work at Thalion at the time)
Never having been to Berlin when the wall was still up
Not paying attention to my teachers of English while I attended secondary school (I would have learned so much)