THE CRUSADE OF EPICS: Top 128, Round 43

Vote for your FAVORITE song:


  • Total voters
    6
  • Poll closed .

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
“Earth Day” was a lot better than I was actually anticipating. It was pretty whacky, but that’s kinda what I was expecting anyway. Lots of different shades going on even as it just sort of kept trudging on and on and on. I mean that in a good way, I was surprised when it was over.

I think it’s time a came out as a “Lochness” fan. In fact, it’s pretty much the only song I really really like from Angel Of Retribution. It was a really daring move from Priest to throw on a song the size of “Rime Of The Ancient Mariner” on their comeback album, but it seems they felt they had something to prove. That they could still go in new directions and not just be a legacy act. And I’m sure a lot of people feel it flopped, but I don’t. I dig the hell out of this song.

Let’s start with the music. Priest threw in a ton of atmosphere into this bad boy. Listen to the intro and how it really almost sounds like something is lurking beneath the water. Then listen to the start of the riff and how it feels like the monster has peaked its head out and is awaiting its moment. And then the riff itself, a triumphantly doomy procession where you can just envision the monster swimming down the lake with onlookers in absolute shock.

Let’s talk a moment about the lyrics. I’m sure we can all agree that the Metal Gods aren’t exactly the front runners in the Metal Wordsmiths Championship. Yet what they have that so many of those that emulate them lack is a real sense of how to match the lyrics with the music. Where it should sound like absolute cheese, it instead sounds powerful. Judas Priest capture a sense of naivety that allows them to actually, in a blunter fashion, perfectly evoke images and feelings from you. In that sense the verses are absolutely perfect. Rob describes the monster with a decent dash of detail to really bring to life what he’s getting across. Of course the chorus itself is cheesy, but do Priest really have much left to prove? And do they not have you enthralled at the same time?

One of the best parts is when we return to the watery cloak that has hidden the monster for hundreds of years, in the interlude. The band really harnesses brilliance here. They know how to bring things down to build up to the grand finale. And what a finale. As soon as that pre-chorus comes back in and we launch back up to the real deal in the chorus itself, it’s game over for Devin. Judas fucking Priest, of all bands, managed to make a thirteen minute behemoth and just slapped it down as if they had been in the business of epics from the very beginning. It’s an experiment that paid off, and something they only managed to recapture once or twice on the even more experimental (and dreadfully bloated) Nostradamus. The boys were back, and even though it doesn’t hit the heights of their god-tier material, it showcases to me a lot of what truly makes Judas Priest, Judas Priest.

Lochness.
 

Mosh

Winner of the 2020 Dumbest Comment Ever Award
Staff member
I've seen Octavarium lose these games before, I was more interested in submitting stuff that doesn't appear as often to maybe turn some folks on to new music. Seems more interesting that way.
 

KidInTheDark666

What's yours is mine and what's mine is mine too
Yeah, to me Octavarium is a pretty average DT song. Kinda like what Rime is to Maiden. But I still think that it's extremely weird that nobody nominated it.
 

Lampwick 43

Barstool Warrior
This one is pretty much a coin flip. I feel like Earth Day is more likely to grow on me over time, but as it stands right now, it hasn't fully clicked yet, so I'm giving my vote to Priest.
 

LooseCannon

Enterprise-class aircraft carrier
Staff member
Giving each track an independent listen now.

Don't mind the way Earth Day starts out, interesting pieces here. The lyrics are really, really terrible though. I don't need someone yelling "RECYCLE" at me ad nauseum, do I? It settles into a rhythm that isn't particularly interesting. I'd say none of this is bad, but it is really, really fucking pretentious (as is true with a lot of Devin's work). This whining "It's your birthday" bit is truly horrible, though the music isn't bad.

Why is "eat your beets" synonymous with "recycle", so weird. 6:12 - the first moment I checked to see how much more I have to listen to, which is never a good sign. Yeah, what starts out fine gets pretty repetitive by the end. Judgement: Not That Good.

I'm more familiar with Lochness, I quite liked it when it came out. It's certainly different from much of Judas Priest's standard fare. Now, that's not bad in and of itself. It definitely builds in intensity as it goes through the first verses, and into the bridge, a slow burn for sure. About four minutes to get to the chorus, which is basically the time a normal Priest song takes in general. Halford really did sound great on this album.

The song starts to drag into the second chorus. The slower burn is hard to pay off a second time, I think. There's a few sound notes in here that add a little variety, but not really all that much, unfortunately. I think this one needs a time change, something a little quicker, sooner than we get it - and the tempo alteration as we enter into the solos isn't enough to really differentiate. Not a great solo either, but that's the tale of Reunion pre-Ritchie Sabbath. 7:33 before I checked time remaining. A time change to slow down was not a needed place. Yeah, we're pretty heavy into unneeded bloat now at the 10 minute mark. Second solo is no more interesting than the first, and regretfully, the song moves into a cacophony here, and then fades out over the course of 3 minutes, ugh.

So yeah, Judas Priest, but I could toss both of these pretty easily.
 

Spambot

Ancient Mariner
OK, what I remember from listening to "Angel of Retribution" is that when “Lochness” came I always rewinded to the first song. So, this Devin’s must be better. Man…

I’m really not the guy to whom lyrics mean much. If they are arranged in good melody - great, it can be about whatever. But this is really too much, even for me. So I had to listen to “Lochness” again and it really is a snoozefest.

Devin’s song is much better composed but those lyrics really shat over everything else, so I’m voting for JP.
I’d rather be bored than disgusted.
 

Night Prowler

Customer Deathcycle Manager
Staff member
Earth Day is way more varied and interesting than Lochness, both instrumentally and vocally. I don't look into lyrics much, but Devin's shtick has always been non-sensical stream-of-consciousness lyrics which aren't meant to be understood by anyone other than him. Maybe Ziltoid excluded. Arjen Lucassen desperately wanted Devin to sing for Ayreon and even let him write his own vocal lines and lyrics because Devin didn't wanna do it otherwise. Devin gave in and did it and Arjen later confessed that he had no idea what the hell the lyrics that Devin wrote (for the songs Devin sang on) meant.

As for Lochness, I probably like it way more than anyone here, but it's nowhere close to Earth Day. Also, it doesn't sound like Nostradamus at all... Songs on that album are also way more varied. While I like Lochness, it's true that it drags in places and you could chop off like 1/3 of it without losing much in quality.
 

MrKnickerbocker

clap hands
Earth Day is far more musically interesting but Devin’s vocals have always been offputting to me and somehow these lyrics are even dumber than those in Lochness (which I quite enjoy, despite the bloat).
 

Night Prowler

Customer Deathcycle Manager
Staff member
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Results of Round 1:
Devin Townsend - Earth Day
Judas Priest - Lochness


Deep Purple - Child In Time (Nominated by @Saapanael)
vs.
Helloween - Keeper Of The Seven Keys (Nominated by @Black Wizard)
 

Saapanael

Твои карие глаза, твои сладкие уста
My nomination again, I'm flattered. :wub:
This is a tough one because I like both songs. I recommend listening to the original Keeper of the Seven Keys instead of this overproduced remix. Not that the original is a production masterpiece but I definitely prefer the authentic sound of the 80s.
 

JudasMyGuide

the Office Block Persecution Affinity CEO
Child in Time all the way. The structure isn't much to write home about (though I kinda like the idea of the downright repetition with second almost identical build-up) and the whole gimmick with it sorta being built around Gillan's voice gets old very quickly, but it's still much more coherent and pleasant to the ear.

I don't really dislike KOTSK, I admit several parts of it are really beautiful (including the chorus), but just like the second epic off that double album, Halloween, it feels meandering at places and not really well thought-out and Kiske's histrionics that makes him almost sound out of tune are really grating. And Halloween was edgier, at least - there's nothing as badass in KOTSK as that riff from 0:54 onwards was in the former.
 

MindRuler

Ancient Mariner
Both great songs but Child In Time is the most timeless classic here. I´ve heard it so many times I know it almost by heart and it´s one of these songs that never gets old...although it is actually. The solo section is pure heaven.
 

Jer

Love in anger
I’m not particularly wowed by “Child In Time”. The verses are nice and the jam is nice, but the high-pitched “ah-ahs” are pretty cringey and it’s not all that interesting structurally. It’s good with some weaker elements, I suppose. I think I like the abbreviated Blackmore’s Night rendition better, as the female voices carry the high notes more cleanly and the song has more atmosphere with a more acoustic approach.

“Keeper Of The Seven Keys” has its own issues — it’s too convoluted structurally, especially in the first half, and there are a number of places where the guitars and vocals seem to be out of sync with each other. The intro and outro are good, the beginning of the chorus is great (though the chorus fizzles pretty quickly), the first bridge right before the halfway mark is good, and then of course the extended dual guitar jam in the second half is great; but there are a lot of other parts in there that just feel slapped together. The second half of the song almost redeems the whole thing, but this is still a track that I rarely listen to because of all of the musical baggage.

Neither track is particularly great overall. KOTSK is more interesting, but also more flawed. I guess I’ll go with consistency, then. Sorry, @Black Wizard, but I have to pick @Saapanael ’s choice here. Winner: Deep Purple
 
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