Tuesday, December 21, 2010

2010: my favorite metal albums!

Here's part one of my best of 2010 lists, and frankly I think that this year was AMAZING for music- there was just so, so much good stuff that came out and it was impossible to stay on top of it all.  This is definitely true for metal, and when reading other people's year end lists, I was overwhelmed by how much I had missed!  So I'm not saying that these are the written-in-stone BEST metal albums of the year, but just the ones I like the most out of what I managed to hear!

read the rest!

ALBUMS I LIKED, but didn't have enough time to review to put on the list, or didn't like strongly enough to put on the list (in no particular order) 2010:

Shining - Blackjazz
Sigh - Scenes from Hell
Ludicra - The Tenant
Agalloch - Marrow of the Spirit
Alcest - Écailles de Lune
The Body - All the Waters of the Earth Shall Turn to Blood
Bongripper - Satan Worshipping Doom
Dark Tranquillity - We Are the Void
Deathspell Omega - Paracletus
Deivos - Gospel of Maggots
Nutr - Unholy Inscriptions on A Tainted Wall
Skagos - Skagos/Panopticon Split
Panopticon - Skagos/Panopticon Split
Decrepit Birth - Polarity
The Secret - Solve Et Coagula
Thou - Summit
Triptykon - Eparistera Daimones
Wrath of the Weak - Solace


High on Fire - Snakes for the Divine
Harvey Milk - A Small Turn of Human Kindness
Daughters - S/T
Kylesa - Spiral Shadow


9. Kvelertak - s/t
This has been making a bunch of journalist's best-of lists, and a lot of bloggers' and fans' worst-of lists.  Sure, Kvelertak's blend of hardcore-influenced rock with black metal flourishes is glossy and hard to take seriously, but if you accept it for what it is then this album is pretty fun.  This is to metal what Taco Bell is to Mexican food, but once in a while I like to get some Taco Bell, you know?

8. Nachtmystium - Addicts: Black Meddle pt II
I thought this album was pretty bad the first time I heard it, and I didn't think much better of it the second, or third, or fourth, or fifth time I listened to it.... Even though I think that (kind of like Kvelertak!) Nachtmystium are a little too hard-rock and not sufficiently kvlt, I kept listening to this album over and over again.  I'm still not sure it's a good album but its got some kind of hook in me.

 7. Triptykon - Shatter
It's a little weird that I picked the Triptykon EP instead of the full-length album it accompanies, but to be honest I didn't even realize there was a full-length until a few weeks ago, and I haven't had the mental space to sit down and process it yet.  Actually, when I first heard this EP, I had no idea it was the new project from Celtic Frost's Tom G Warrior, and was impressed at what a fully-formed sound this new band had.  In retrospect its less impressive since this is basically "Tom G Warrior's NEW Celtic Frost", but at least he had the decency to do it under a new name.  There's a lot of silly gothiness going on here, but there is also some really convincingly evil vocals and an amazingly crushing guitar sound.  I dig it.

 6. Culted - Of Death & Ritual
Like Triptykon, newcomers Culted bridge the gap between doom and black metal, and much like Triptykon, the results are pure, awful evilness.  I found the last track on this four-song EP to be pretty terrible, but other than that, this has a wonderfully vile atmosphere to it and I'm eager to see what this band does next.

5. Trap Them - Filth Rations
Nearly half of the releases on this list are EPs- I guess I had a short attention span this year.  Or maybe, I just appreciate when a band manages to get the point done in an efficient manner.  Trap Them don't waste any time on this EP, delivering vicious metal influenced hardcore in a Converge style.  

 4. Vit - -
This was a latecomer to my best-of list, sneaking in at the very end.  I don't really know anything about this band, but they weave disparate sounds into their epic black metal in a way that I really enjoy.  There's some post-rock going on, some weirdly warm and friendly guitar sounds, some back-porch banjo playing, yet it always somehow works.   "Ascention Ritual" is a strong contender for my favorite metal track of this year.

 3. Krieg - The Isolationist
This album definitely snuck up on me- at first I didn't think much of it, but its just a really solid black metal album.  It doesn't really inspire me to say much about it, but I sure do enjoy listening to it.

 2. Hayaino Daisuki - Invincible Gate Mind of the Infernal Fire Hell- or- Did You Mean Hawaii Daisuki?
No other metal release this year had as much energy as this one did.  This gets my fists pumping and head banging everytime. 

 1. Burzum - Belus
Did anyone think that Burzum would ever be relevant again?  I definitely did not, but this is a testament to the fact that no matter how despicable he may be as a person, Burzum is definitely one of pillars of black metal.


  1. I just bought that Krieg album, it's really good!Did you hear Murmuure or the new Furze album?

  2. No! Although I just read an interview with the guys from Aquarius Records in SF and it made me really want to hear that murmuure album!

  3. I liked Snakes For the Divine...I mean it was no Death is This Communion or even Blessed Black Wings for that matter, but I was still into it.

  4. I heard a lot of people say that they thought snakes for the divine was high on fire's best album, but it left me cold... there was just nothing memorable about it to me. i felt like previous albums had epic moments that were undeniable, but i sort of slept through snakes for the divine