Another year is nearly done having seemed to pass by so quickly, and looking back 2010 has been a winner for music fans, given the economic climate it's undoubtedly not the easiest of times, especially as the cost of living continues to rise faster than wages. Yet there has been considerable new music this year from both the old and newer acts. Sometimes you wonder how far a group can push themselves, and to their credit many keep managing to surpass their previous releases.
2010 began strongly with great albums like those from Myrath and Orphaned Land and the steady flow of releases kept on coming, giving the credit cards a workout. There was the odd disappointing album but really not that many, plus the usual differences of opinion especially when any band tried something new.
It will be most interesting reading to compare the 2010's best of lists, I'm sure there will a range of variations though you would expect that a splendid release like Arjen lucassen's newest Star One CD will feature highly in many top choices. I still have more music to hear before I can name my picks, but there are some albums that are easy choices as I keep going back for more like those mentioned above.
In other music related events we had the terrible shock of discovering that legendary singer Ronnie James Dio had passed away, his amazing voice will be missed, Ronnie has left us with so many stellar recordings. Then there was a different kind of surprise when Mike Portnoy announced his departure from Dream Theater. After so many years creating and performing music together and at a time when the band really seemed to be taking off, creating countless discussions about why this happened, and the future for both. Also The Scorpions announced they were calling it a day with their final release Sting In The Tail impressing many.
So musically what's on the horizon for 2011? Well new material from such fantastic acts as Symphony X, Stratovarius, Testament, Devin Townsend, Dragonland, Circus Maximus, OSI, and Threshold plus many others. Lastly given recent events Dream Theater must be keen to come back stronger, with their yet to be named new drummer and release an album that's blows us away. So once again there's lots to look forward to next year.