To honour the thirteenth anniversary of Sophie Lancaster’s passing, the theme for this album of the month post is Proud To Be You. What happened to Sophie was a tragedy and you should never be made to feel ashamed or afraid of who you are. So, here is what the team have picked as their go-to albums if they need that boost and a reminder that they are fine just as they are.
Lotty: Avril Lavigne – Let Go
Avril Lavigne is an important figure in my life. Not only did her sound help shape my music taste, her attitude to life shaped me as a person. She was one of the first people I knew of who said “just be yourself, don’t worry about what others think”. I should also mention she was the first person I saw live in concert. So, as in terms of the theme of Album Of The Month, there is no better album or person that fits this category for me. My absolute favourite song on this album is Anything But Ordinary, it’s my theme song I swear. The line “I’d rather be anything but ordinary” is something I would say and whenever I need reminding that I am a great person, I listen to this song. The song My World also has this effect on me. Nobody can forget the songs Complicated, I’m With You and Sk8er Boi can they? Listening to these again brings a nostalgic smile back on my face. These are the reasons why Avril Lavigne’s Let Go is my album of the month.
Find AVRIL LAVIGNE on Facebook.
Steph – Professor Elemental: The Giddy Limit
In keeping to this month’s theme, I would like to introduce Professor Elemental. He is not rock or metal, however, he is insane, weird, and downright kooky. He managed to create a style of music that did not existed before, he calls it chap hop. In his persona of a time travelling Victorian gentleman with an obsession with tea, he manages to create a family out of his fans. He reaches out and accepts you with all your faults, letting you know its OK to be different. In this album, he brings together a mix of messages. In All in Together, he tells us we are part of a tribe no matter how alone you feel. In Outside the Box, he encourages us to grow and not be afraid. In You’re Being Hunted, he tells us we’re being hunted……no message but a great song any way.
Find PROFESSOR ELEMENTAL on Facebook.
Martin: The Eagles – Hotel California
This month focuses on albums that make us happy to be ourselves and once again I have gone back in time for my choice. Hotel California by THE EAGLES is one album I always go back to time and time again and it never ever gets old for me.
The EAGLES were (as memory serves), my first introduction to music and since then I’ve always loved the sound of a guitar. My Dad is a huge EAGLES fan. He frequently had the album on in the car whilst on trips out and alongside having my own copy on cassette (which I still have) recorded straight from his vinyl, it constantly gives me happy memories.
I have always interpreted the title track as a song about a haunted hotel. This is in part to the eerily haunting intro and the themes covered within the lyrics: “you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.”
There’s a blend of straight out classic rock, country rock, classically influenced instrumentals and epics throughout the album. These cover a wide array of themes such as; living life on the edge – Life in the Fast Lane – (LIMP BIZKIT sampled part of the chorus in their track Livin’ It Up) and; mankind’s downfall in being given the keys to paradise and totally messing it up – The Last Resort “because there is no more new frontier, we have got to make it here. We satisfy our endless needs and justify our bloody deeds”
Commercially, the album was certified platinum within one week of release, and in recent years has been certified 26x platinum, clearly still reaching new audiences to this day.
Find THE EAGLES on Facebook.
Jack: Linkin Park – Hybrid Theory
At the ripe age of nine, I was heavily influenced by my older sister’s CD collection when I was introduced to Hybrid Theory. Twenty years later and this album still speaks to me as much as any album has done previously. It is filled with emotion and pain, yet it is musically brilliant. Listening to Hybrid Theory reminds me that it is OK to not always feel great. People have bad days and that is acceptable…it is human. 99% of my music taste was moulded from listening to this album and I love it now, just as much as I ever have done.
Find LINKIN PARK on Facebook.
Jacob: Jethro Tull – Heavy Horses
A progressive rock act named after a historical agriculturalist featuring the most hardcore of instruments – the flute.
Heavy Horses by JETHRO TULL is not a typical rock album in the sense that there is no fascination with the occult, death, drugs or any of the well trodden ground in the last 50 years. Instead it provides a realistic look at the changing landscape, the mechanisation of the countryside and the ever onward march of progress. From the title track which is an ode to the working horses of Britain, to No Lullaby, a relatively unsettling way to sing a child to sleep. The album reaches its end on Broadford Bazaar, a look at the effect of job loss, reliance on tourism and a small degree of hope.
This album makes me feel OK to be me because it reflects my own background and relationship with the rock and metal genres.
Find JETHRO TULL on Facebook.
Stefan: Kamelot – I Am The Empire: Live At The 013
This is a live album from one of my all-time favourite bands that got me really hyped for its release since its announcement. The band definitely delivers a spectacular show filled with a stellar array of amazing special guests that night such as Elize Ryd (AMARANTHE), Alissa White-Gluz (ARCH ENEMY) and Charlotte Wessels (DELAIN) to name a few. This show and album provide an unforgettable atmosphere that the band have become masters of over the years.
There are so many highlights throughout this highly impactful live album including My Confession, March Of Mephisto, Under Grey Skies and Forever. The song for me that I really get goosebumps on is Sacrimony (Angel Of Afterlife) which guests both Elize Ryd and Alissa White-Gluz singing alongside Tommy Karevik to deliver the quintessential KAMELOT song.
KAMELOT are also one of three bands that have helped me feel proud of the person that I am today, the other two are AMARANTHE and BEYOND THE BLACK. KAMELOT were not only one of the very first metal bands that I listened to, but they were also the very first Metal show/concert/gig that I attended. They have helped develop my taste in music. For me being a part of KAMELOT shows and history means so much more than that now, it means belonging to a part of an Empire!
Find KAMELOT on Facebook.
What albums make you feel proud to be you? We would love to hear your choices in the comment sections on here and our social media platforms. See you on the next album of the month post.