awardsThroughout 2013 our dedicated team of reviewers have delivered the key verdicts first on the very best albums and gigs of the year.

So settle down and compare your annual favourites with our top team’s top choices from the last 12 months. 










Richard Holmes (Reviews Editor)


1.Carcass – Surgical Steel

A death metal classic in its own right, Surgical Steel was all that long time fans had hoped for and much more. Not many reunions bear as much fruit as this… or have as many great riffs!

2. Wardruna – Yggdrasil

3. Clutch – Earth Rocker

4. Satyricon – Satyricon

5. Kvelertak – Meir

6. Kylesa – Ultraviolet

7. Cult Of Luna – Vertikal

8. Altaar – Altaar

9. We Are Knuckle Dragger – The Drone

10. In Solitude – Sister



1. Carcass – Damnation Festival, Leeds University, Leeds

An absolute masterclass in extremity from beginning to end, with new material blending effortlessly with gnarly old classics… and an ecstatic crowd lapping up every moment. Want to know how to play death metal? Get a video of this set.

2. Palehorse – GNAW Festival, Star and Shadow Cinema, Newcastle

3. Saint Vitus – Northumbria University, Newcastle

4. Conan – Star and Shadow Cinema, Newcastle

5. God Seed – Damnation Festival, Leeds University, Leeds



Ian Murtagh (Self Made Man)


1. The Temperance Movement – The Temperance Movement

A debut album messaging potential stardom. This is retro music sent kicking and screaming into the future.

2. Deep Purple – Now What?

3. Gary Clark Jnr – Blak And Blu

4. Kings Of Leon – Mechanical Bull

5. The Answer – New Horizon

6. David Bowie – The Next Day

7. Michael Schenker’s Temple Of Rock – Bridge The Gap

8. Snakecharmer – Snakecharmer

9. The Strypes – Snapshot

10. Free Fall – Power And Volume



1. Roger Waters’ The Wall – Phones 4u Arena, Manchester

Theatrically stunning, lyrically provoking, musically perfect. Quite simply the ultimate live experience.

2. The Who – Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle

3. Rush – SECC, Glasgow

4. Mark Knopfler – Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle

5. Neil Young – Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle



Russell Hughes (Staff Writer)


1. Max Raptor – Mothers Ruin

One of the best British bands around seized potential by the scruff of the neck and turned it into proven quality on the magnificent Mothers Ruin.

2. Press To Meco – Affinity

3. Kill For Company – Alternative to Living

4. Dance Gavin Dance – Acceptance Speech

5. Nightlife – For The Record

6. Dinosaur Pile Up – Nature Nurture

7. Reaper In Sicily – Islands

8. De Staat – I_Con

9. Close Your Eyes – A Line In The Sand

10. Pyro, Ohio – Before The Sun Sets



1. The Who – Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle

Old stagers taught rock’s new breed a thing or two about performing the big hits on the biggest stages with charisma, character and quality to burn.

2. Anberlin – o2 Academy, Newcastle 

3. LostAlone – o2 Academy, Newcastle

4. The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus – o2 Academy, Newcastle

5. Dinosaur Pile Up – Think Tank, Newcastle