Our End of the Year series continues with yet another reflection of the records that have excited, inspired and moved us in 2017. We have sought to balance albums and EPs you may have heard of with those that definitely deserve more space, reflecting the breadth of independent work we covered this year, and asking a number of great DIY labels and artists was basically one of the greatest ideas to express it. Check out the newest selection by British independent label Holy Roar Records and let us know about your favourites this year in the comments below!
Overall, Holy Roar has had a great, interesting and varied year. We got to release albums to acclaim like never before (eg Kerrang! cover articles and album of the year with Employed To Serve), we scored a distribution deal with Deathwish in America, we made our own beer with our friends at Good Chemistry in Bristol, we sold out the inaugural Holy Reefer fest on 4/20 (natch) and we released a lot of records!
Next year will see us release probably even more records and hopefully continue to grow, without ever compromising who we are or what we do….we will never release dogshit music. In our opinion. There’s other exciting things on the horizon of course ;) – watch this space!
FRIENDSHIP – Hatred
The most angry and brutal record I heard this year. Straight up. Incredible.
MINORS – Atrophy (Holy Roar)
I was so blown away when I heard this. I’ve known their guitarist, Nick Kinnish, for quite some time as he recorded the first couple of eps by my old band (Pariso). This comes from a similar place to Cursed I feel – sludgy, brutal, metallic, yet still with a punk heart. Musically they are their own beast though.
Blanck Mass – World Eater
Just pure energy, hooks and an undercurrent of noise. This was probably the best electronic record to come out this year in my opinion.
Employed To Serve – The Warmth of a Dying Sun (Holy Roar)
Album of the year in Kerrang! as of today, and love from across the board. A milestone record for us. Heavy as hell – like Will Haven if they were a modern, progressive hardcore band.
Elder – Reflections of a Floating World
At first I wasn’t 100% sold on this record as I loved previous record ‘Lore’ so much that I guess I was hoping for more of the same. This has more of an organic, ‘live’ feel and arguably takes longer to get into, but is just as rewarding, if not more so, than Lore.
OHHMS – The Fool (Holy Roar)
Hugely proud to have stood with OHHMS since their first recordings. Watching this band grow and grow has been a joy, and this album is a work of art.
Less Art – Strangled Light
It’s absolutely awesome to have one of my favourite vocalists, Mike Minnick who used to be in Curl Up And Die, back. This is loosely post-hardcore/noise-rock. It’s really great.
Helpless – Debt (Holy Roar)
I love it when something takes me by surprise. I knew their debut album would be good….but I wasn’t expecting how punishing this album is, nor the reaction it received.
Drab Majesty – The Demonstration
Just incredible songs, that sound like they are pulled from somewhere between the 80’s and outer space.
Brutality Will Prevail – In Dark Places (Holy Roar)
It was a joy to realign with BWP – they got back to what they do best, and are now ripping up the road worldwide….which they also do very well indeed!