My most anticipated releases of 2017 – Part 6

Welcome to what I confidently predict will be the final part in this ever-expanding series where I look at those albums which will, should or might be released during 2017. I’ve already offered 25 releases that I’d be delighted to hear but the music keeps on coming to prove that heavy music is very much alive and well.

If you’ve missed the previous instalments of this series, here are the links:

My most anticipated releases of 2017 – Part 1
My most anticipated releases of 2017 – Part 2
My most anticipated releases of 2017 – Part 3
My most anticipated releases of 2017 – Part 4
My most anticipated releases of 2017 – Part 5

And now onto the main event…

Caligula’s Horse – TBC
Release date: TBC

This is a band that completely blew me away with their incredible album ‘Bloom’ a couple of years ago. It was a sensational slab of modern progressive metal with one foot firmly embedded in the classic era of prog. It was just amazing.

Needless to say that I can’t wait for a new album from the talented Australians. The bad news is that a 2017 follow-up has yet to be confirmed. The good news is that they have already road-tested new material and have received a huge response. The fact that the material in question is a 16 minute epic only helps to heighten my excitement further. I genuinely cannot wait for this album to come to fruition.

Distorted Harmony – TBC
Release date: TBC

Whilst we are on the subject of being blown away by music, you can add Distorted Harmony to the list. Their ‘Chain Reaction’ album that was released in 2014 was light years ahead of their previous offerings. Gone were the clear Dream Theater comparisons and in came a much more exciting, urgent, magical style of progressive metal. Genuinely heavy and genuinely progressive, it was also extremely subtle and immensely beautiful. Strong melodies, groove, light and shade; this album was a true journey and one that I found myself wanting to take on a frighteningly frequent basis. I still do if truth be told. It goes without saying therefore that I literally can’t wait for a follow-up. Will it arrive in 2017? Well, it isn’t official yet but new material has been written. Fingers crossed…

My Dying Bride – TBC
Release date: TBC

A reason to be gloomy for those, like me, who enjoy such things would definitely be a new My Dying Bride album in 2017. In the latter stages of 2016, the band confirmed that they would concentrate on writing for a new album, although a ballpark release date wasn’t mentioned. So it might be 2017 or, equally likely, 2018. Being a firm favourite with me though, I couldn’t let the opportunity pass by without mentioning one of the finest purveyors or solemn and miserable doom metal on the planet. Watch this space…

Immortal – TBC
Release date: TBC

I can confirm that a new album from Immortal will definitely be released in 2017, at least that’s the case according to the band on their official website. I’ve never been the biggest fan of Immortal but there’s no denying that over the years they have produced some suitably grim and powerful music to counteract their preposterously over-the-top image.

It will be even more interesting this time around because it will be the first album since the departure of Abbath, he of the million memes. Now that Immortal is just Demonaz and Horgh, I am sure that I won’t be the only one who is intrigued to find out how Immortal 2017 sounds. Recording is due to take place very soon in the Abyss Studio with Peter Tagtgren, so we won’t have too much longer to wait to find out.

Shadow Gallery – TBC
Release date: TBC

What I wouldn’t give for a new Shadow Gallery record. This progressive metal band is one of my all-time favourite bands and everything they have released has the word ‘masterful’ rightly attached to it. Never the most prolific of bands in the first place, the death of lead vocalist Mike Baker and the recent personal tribulations of Gary Wehrkamp mean that they have slowed their output ever further. This is the most unlikely release in the entire series, but I live in eternal hope.

Pagan’s Mind – TBC
Release date: TBC

According to a post from the band themselves on New Years Eve, new music from Norwegian melodic prog metal band Pagan’s Mind is a possibility for 2017. I quote: ‘We know we have said this a million times already but we genuinely hope to have new music for you in 2017, but please know we can’t give any guarantees’. It is non-committal but it is a step in the right direction and means that we could hear some new music from one of the best exponents of melodic progressive-tinged heavy metal. I’ve loved everything from ‘Celestial Entrance’ and whilst they have toned down their progressive edge over the years, their music remains of the very highest quality.

Pallbearer – Heartless
Release date: 24 March 2017

I wasn’t going to mention this band in this list to begin with. I really did enjoy their previous album ‘Foundations of Burden’, which was a big surprise to me given that I’m not the greatest doom fan. However, whilst undertaking my research for this series, I came upon a quote about the upcoming album, suggesting it ‘weaves together the spacious exploratory elements of classic prog, the raw anthemics of 90’s alt-rock, and stretches of black-lit proto-metal’. Well blimey, I wasn’t necessarily expecting a description like this and I consider my interest to be thoroughly piqued.

It may be a huge let-down or it might, more likely, be a huge success that sees the Pallbearer name become ever more successful. Either way, I’m up for hearing a slice of this.

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