By: Kirby Stokes

Due to the fact that there was a span of nearly six months between Issue #13 and Issue #14 of THE ROC, Kirby wasn't able to get his TOPS OF 1993 in the Feb./March issue. Perhaps a little late, but here it is and still worth checking out. Bands and record labels looking to get your material checked out send it to, Kirby Stokes, 1320 N Cleaver, Chicago IL 60622. If you'd like to chat with Kirb, give him a call at: 312-342-8703. Demo tapes from unsigned bands welcomed.

TOPS OF 1993

#10. PARADISE LOST, "Icon" (Metal Blade)

Finally a band that has bridged the gap between Death/Gothic to a more traditional form of metal (not that there's anything wrong with either one). "Icon" is their follow up to 1992's masterful full-length "Shades of God." (they had an E. P. in between, "As I Die", and they show no signs of letting up with "Icon." Some standouts are "Colossal Rains," "Shallow Seasons," and "Joys Of Emptiness." Paradise Lost is, Nick Holmes, (vocals), Gregor Maclntosh (lead guitar), Aaron Aedy (rhythm/acoustic guitars), Stephen (bass), and Matthew Archer (drums). This is a band that you won't be takin' a chance on when you're out shoppin' around. Also, don't miss these guys live.

#9. MERCYFUL FATE: "In The Shadows" (Metal Blade)

See THE ROC #14. ("KIRB's KORNER')

#8. REVOLTING COCKS: "Linger Ficken Good & Other Barnyard Oddities" (Sire/WB)

This is a real tough one, somehow I was anticipating a little more from the Revolting ones. Guess it just goes to show that REVCO aren't above putting out a sub-par disc by their standards. The follow up to their last full-length, 1990's "Beers, Steers and Queers," which stands alone (one of my all time favorites). I don't know, maybe I expected too much. It started off pretty good with "Gila Copter" featuring the guest appearance of acid lord Timothy ("Yeah") Leary, with some total mind blowing samples on top of a Gargantuan beat. "Creep", kinda drags on too long. "Mr. Lucky" and "Crackin' Up" are both great, "Sergio" on the other hand, is a complete waste of time. "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?" the Rod Stewart "gem" is covered here, one of the best songs on this. Brilliant, humorous and a Godlike bassline from Paul Barker. "The Rockable," "Butcher Flowers Woman," and "Dirt" are all cool too, but "Linger Ficken"? C'mon what a rip-off. I mean who wants to hear an almost ten minute mythological montage of nothing you'd wanna hear more than once. C'mon Buck!

#7. SNOOP DOGGY DOGG: "Doggy Style. " (Death Row/ Interscope)

Dogg is the word, devastation is his game. The new G on the block has released what has to be the most over-the-top work since N.W.A.'s domination of the hip-hop kingdom. Once you get past the two intro's "Bathtub" and "G Funk Intro," Snoop Dogg's smoothness on the mike is so powerful it's scary (he's only 19.) "Gin and Juice", "Tha Shiznit," and "Lodi Dodi" are the bombs. "Murder Was The Case" is one of my fave's. It has an extremely eerie groove that'll knock ya on ya ass. "Serial Killa" is another one featuring some "killa" vocal FX. "Who Am I (What's My Name?)" leaves no question there's a new force to be reckoned with outta Long Beach, or anywhere else for that matter "For, All My Niggaz & Bitches" is an anthem for all who's down with the Dogg Pound. As far as the production goes, guess who's in, the Dr. Dre that is and ya know what that means. However you feel about the Dogg's "sexism" think about walking in his paws. I don't think you could. "Cast the first stone..." If this stuff frightens you, or shocks, maybe you should be terrified. "Bow-Wow, Beee-Itch!"


The definite collision/collection of hip-hop and rock. Helmet and House Of Pain kick it off with "Just Another Victim." Then you have the Godfathers of the whole fuckin' thing Run-DMC, joining forces with Living Colour for "Me, Myself and My Microphone." The title track is performed by two of N.Y.C.'s finest (no, not Cagney and Lacy) Biohazard and Onyx, awesome. Talk about killer, monstrous and worth the price of admission here alone ya got "The O.G." himself Ice 'Mutha-Fuckin' T with the return of Slayer turning in a re-worked medley of three Exploited songs. On "Disorder" Slayer has never sounded better, considering the loss (he left the band) of the best rock drummer alive Dave Lombardo. Paul Bostaph replaces him and does an excellent job. Side two is a little weaker but not without it's highlights like Boo-Yaa T.R.I.B.E. with Faith No More on "Another Body Murder." Sonic Youth and Cypress Hill "I Love You Mary Jane," (mmm, hit it). Also making an appearance is the "Mack-Daddy" Sir Mix-A-Lot with Mudhoney doing "Freak Mama." This is a fabulous collection, one of the best ever, get it. Obviously the musicians enjoy doing this stuff, as well as (hopefully) the fans. Now if only these so-called "critics" can get their shit straight and get with it!

#5. MONSTER MAGNET: "Super-judge, " (A&M)

This 'un's a veritable mojo bag full of voodoo chile. Like cosmic mythology, with riffs that sound like they are coming from Thor his-self (uh-huh). By the time the first track "Cyclops Revolution" kicks in ya know yer in fer one helluva ride that ya can't (or have no intention) of gettin' off of. This stuff's kinda retro (it's the tubes man, the amps man not the band) remaining fresh, while not straying too far into hippie land, (check out those sitars). Stylistically Dave Wyndorf & the guys are definitely onto something here. Sorne of the best tunes are the aforementioned, "Cyclops Revolution," "Elephant Bell." (Check out those lyrics!) The crushing "Dinosaur Vacuum." and their cover of Hawkwind's almighty "Brainstorm." A track that would have to qualify as one be all-end all kinda thang, if I had to die this's what I'd wanna hear as a request. Fantastic album!

#4. BUTTHOLE SURFERS: "Independent Worm Saloon." (Capitol)

See THE ROC #12 (Kirb's Korner.)


See THE ROC #12 (Kirb's Korner).

#2. KMFDM: "Angst" (TVT/Wax Trax)

This piece of work leaves the considerable aftertaste of food for thought in the brain. Wrapped around an unrelenting juggernaut of cyber-punk fury (pulled that one outta my arse didn't I?). Members are En Esch (vox/gtr), Sascha Konietzko (vox, percussion and programming), Svet Am (gtr) and last, but not least, "the Creepy One" Mark 'Durantula' Durante (gtr) who with En Esch each have REVCO and Pigface on their resumes respectfully, and if songs like KMFDM's answer to the failed '80's inquisition, "A Drug Against War" and the multi-layered guitar attack of "Hole In The Wall" proves anything, it's that they are the force to be reckoned within this genre. There's obviously a current trend (thank God) in music, that questions the status quo and tells it to fuck off (don't believe the shit about life reflecting art, it's vice-versa). KMFDM, along with Sepultura and Rage Against The Machine, are one of those bands. And if music can help change things for the better, so be it man, so be it. "Faster Than Ever, Than Ever Before..."

#1. SEPULTURA: "Chaos A.D." (Roadrunner)

"The Jungle Boys" finest work to date, and they've only just begun to hit their stride, LOOK OUT! The songs are kinda scaled down, choosing to draw more on their punk influences than metal excesses. More crunch of the bunch, you could say. This time out they've produced a masterpiece which proves that (in this case at least) less is indeed more. From track #1, "Refuse/Resist" to track #12, "Clenched Fist." mixes political/social commentary with music as heavy as Jupiter. Just plain excellent songs, superb musicianship from Max, Igor, Andreas, and Paulo. A must have for any lover of intense music. Don't miss them live.

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