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Viking's Choice 2015: The Year In The Loud And The Weird

The artwork for VHO–L's<em> Deeper Than Sky</em> perfectly illustrates the shredded cosmos the album explores.
Brandon Duncan
Courtesy of the artist
The artwork for VHO–L's Deeper Than Sky perfectly illustrates the shredded cosmos the album explores.

At this point, it's basically tradition: The last show of the year is dedicated to the loud, the fast, the heavy, the cosmic and the sublime. A.K.A., when All Songs Considered host Bob Boilen and I talk about metal, punk and a broad definition of experimental music. Maybe you've listened to some of these outliers in my Viking's Choice column or even on the podcast — they definitely stick out like a sore, headbanging thumb.

In 2015, Iron Maiden reminded us all why it's one of the greatest heavy metal bands of all time, a once-mysterious sacred music collective from Liverpool returned after 20 years away and some Olympia punks smashed the patriarchy with a boot to the head.

If this is a sonic realm you wish to enter on the regular, it's best to follow me on Twitter, Bandcamp and Spotify. I've also written up 50 of my favorite musical ephemera on Tumblr.

Note: In this episode, I make the plea, "We need you Lemmy!" when discussing metal veterans still making music. We taped this episode one week before the Motörhead founder died. Rest in power, Lemmy. This one's for you.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Bob Boilen
In 1988, a determined Bob Boilen started showing up on NPR's doorstep every day, looking for a way to contribute his skills in music and broadcasting to the network. His persistence paid off, and within a few weeks he was hired, on a temporary basis, to work for All Things Considered. Less than a year later, Boilen was directing the show and continued to do so for the next 18 years.