GodsmackDaBelly’s Top List – 2014

Here it is, the end of another great year at DaBelly.  Each year we find ourselves blessed to meet so many wonderful people and bands and it's always a pleasure to present them to you, our readers.  Each year we compile a list of our favorite moments in DaBelly - our Top List.  From Sara, Sally and I...  We hope that you enjoyed this year as much as we did! 



Sara’s Top Albums/EPs

Sheltered Turtle
"Meridian Eclipse"                                                          

Henry Nam, a.k.a. Sheltered Turtle, has a masterly and characterful approach to percussive finger style on acoustic guitar which is awe-inspiring.  Check out our interview with Henry Nam at The NAMM Show 2014

Devin Townsend Project
"Ziltoid 2"                                                                 

Another masterpiece by the genius himself, Devin Townsend. Without question, "Z2" is the album of albums for production and the commentary on Dark Matters is ridiculously brilliant.  Townsend even ties with Casualties of Cool. 

Casualties Of Cool
"Casualties Of Cool"

Devin Townsend and  Ché Aimee Dorval's side project, Casualties of Cool, just shows another side of Townsend's genius. A little bit of saloon style country mixed in with rock n' roll, this album is flawless. 


Singularity is the next generation in symphonic black metal. You can check out what Jack and Nick had to say about the album in an interview with DaBelly.    http://www.dabelly.com/columns/lint164.htm

Judas PriestEL

Prog rockers EL masterly-composed debut EP features one emotive instrumental number and four heavy rockin’ tracks. Overall "Elusion" is rhythmically fantastic, stimulating and catchy in the "off the beaten path" kind of way.

Meridian Dawn
&"The Mixed Tape"

"The Mixed Tape" presents three brilliantly vicious originals, "Thieves," "The Fever Syndrome" and "Dressed in Ice," featuring Jake E. of Amaranthe and two cover songs, "I Don’t Wanna Be Me" from Type O Negative and "Descent" from Fear Factory.

Check out DaBelly interview Meridian Dawn   http://www.dabelly.com/features/feature418.htm


Sally’s Top Albums/EP

Black Veil Brides
"Black Veil Brides IV"
LLava Records/Universal Republic

Just a great listen. Enjoy its content and the validity in which it is delivered. One of my favorite new bands.


It’s Godsmack-- what can I say?! Rich sound, not giving way to weakness within the musicianship that they have worked hard to achieve over the years.

Crown The Empire
"The Resistance: Rise of the Runaways"
RRise Records

This band never fails to impress me with the different aspects of their music. Complex, yet sending the message of who they are.

Judas Priest
"Redeemer of Souls"

ChevelleKeeping true to their sound of classic metal and giving their fans what they love.


Dave’s Top Albums/EPs

Animals As Leaders
“The Joy of Motion” 

I’m almost ashamed to say this was my introduction to Animals As Leaders.  Amazing musicianship and unexpected twists and turns makes this an album I don’t get tired of. 


Periphery is one of the pioneers of djent progressive metal , complex polyrhythms, floating melodies and a constantly evolving vocal tonally that ranges from emo to death metal. 

“La Gárgola”

Minimalist in-your-face rock.  The music hits you hard the first time and harder the second.

“Shadows Of The Dying Sun”      

Melodic death metal from Finland.  Songs about darkness, sorrow, loss, pain, and of nature.  This, their sixth studio release, has all the teeth of their best work. 


Soaring melodies and of course the voice of Dianne van Giersbergen.  A STRONG combination!


Sara’s Top Shows/Concert/Festivals

Wacken Open AirDevin Townsend getting the crowd to form the largest metal hug ever to be done. Emperor performing in its entirety 'In The Nightside Eclipse'

Vattnet Viskar on tour with Dillinger Escape Plan

Sally’s Top Shows/Concert/Festivals

Judas Priest at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, AZ November 2014. I would have to say my favorite concert of the year. Halford’s voice is just freaking amazing even after 40 years. Last time I saw this band was in Milwaukee, WI many, many, many moons ago...  

Devour the Day at KUPD’s Ufest Tempe, AZ May 2014. The band was formed by Joey Walser and Blake Allison out of their prior band, Egypt Central. They really engaged the fans with their high energy and their joy of being in the moment was very much a part of their game play. Topping it off, they finished with the song written by Walser and Allison that rocketed Egypt Central-- "White Rabbit." 

The Black Moods Prescott Valley, AZ. Rocking it out of their home state of Arizona the band is just as comfortable on a large stage as they are in a small pub. The band made it on my top three list, due to their ability to draw in their growing fan base and make them feel as if they just walked into their home for a family gathering.


Dave’s Top Shows/Concert/Festivals

Periphery at The Grove in Anaheim, CA - January 2014
This was my first experience with Periphery, an industry only show sans vocalist Spencer Sotelo.  This is a band that I need to see in full regalia. 

Xandria at Club red in Tempe, AZ  - October 2014
I was on hand covering the Sonata Arctica show and was completely and pleasantly surprised by one of their support acts – Xandria!  Great show! 

Judas Priest at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, AZ – November 2014
I haven’t seen this band since the “Hell Bent for Leather” tour at the Uptown Theater in Milwaukee, WI.  Years have passed, but Halford still has the voice and although it was a classic metal show – it was a lot of fun! 



Sara’s Top Band/Group

Steven Rushingwind - Nammy and multi-award winning flutist  

The Winery DogsSingularity - This is a name you will start seeing more of. Singularity is one of the more impressive bands out right now.

- A prog rock band with a vision. They can only be described as brilliant, from showmanship to musicianship. Their debut album, "Vitriolum," made the list for Best Album of 2013. I highly recommend watching their music videos on Youtube, especially for stop animation fans.


Sally’s Top Band/Group/strong>

Where do I start on this one….Whinery Dogs? Sevendust? Vattnet Viskar? Vex?

I would have to say all four. I know I was told to list three, but...

Winery Dogs Beyond pumped. Portnoy on drums, Sheehan on base and Ritchie Kotzen on guitar and vocals.

Sevendust Speechless. Just a really freaking great band.

Vattnet Viskar Very intense band, not to mention a great bunch of guys.

VEX Beware they are just around the corner and they are coming for you. If you haven’t had the opportunity to get to know them…well…it’s just a matter of time.


Dave’s Top Band/Group

VEX is a Phoenix band that is shaking up the scene.  All that’s missing is a major producer.  Be careful world, VEX is coming!


Most Anticipated of 2015

Sara’s Most Anticipated

Blind Guardian – “Beyond The Red Mirror" 

The Black MoodsFaith No More – Set to release their seventh studio album April 2015. 

Sally’s Most Anticipated

I always look forward to scooping out NAMM. I get catch up time with our DaBelly Editor Michelle Mills.

I am also looking forward to working with those in the music industry offering an opportunity to hear new things from new bands. I find it captivating in what they offer to the music industry.

And to round out to the #3 spot on the list… the ability to follow a dream… not just as a photographer but as a journalist as well. Just thinking of getting behind that camera in front of a stage or to talk to someone I know that I would have never had, had the chance to meet otherwise, makes me catch my breath, smile, be happy and find that peace when I sit down to what I call my crunch time. See I do work out I do, I do! The gym is just an illusion!!! LOL

Dave’s Most Anticipated

Kamelot has returned to the studio and projected an album release in March 2015 with a tour of North America to follow. 

Although news regarding a new record has yet to be announced, Dream Theater has just finished up the fifth leg of their “Along for the Ride” tour.  It wouldn’t be a shock to see them enter the studio in 2015 with a release later in the year. 

Periphery is scheduled to release “Juggernaut: Alpha/Juggernaut: Omega” in late January


Artists with Material in Production for 2015



Black Sabbath

Bullet for My Valentine

Butcher Babies


Coal Chamber

Cradle of Filth


Faith No More

Fear Factory

Five Finger Death Punch





Lamb of God








Stone Sour

Symphony X


Three Days Grace



Rob Zombie


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