Metal Mixtape, 3 August 2016

Follow the Metal Mixtape playlist on Spotify here.

Today’s tracks:

  1. Arion – Seven
  2. Abydos – Silence
  3. Anciients – Raise the Sun
  4. Leprous – Not Even a Name
  5. Celeste – (Y)
  6. Vreid – Millom Hav Og Fjell
  7. Opeth – When
  8. Bestial Warlust – …’Till the End
  9. Anubis Gate – Out of Time
  10. Nordjevel – Denne Tidløse Krigsdom

Enjoy, and as always please leave any comments or suggestions in the comments! What’s your favourite and your least favourite track today?

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Top Metal Albums of 2015 (So Far)

The top metal albums of 2015 (so far), according to the charts at Rate Your Music.

As we’re approaching the halfway point of 2015, I thought it might be interesting to cast an eye over what are regarded as the top metal albums of 2015, according to the collated votes of users at Rate Your Music (which, by the way, tends to provide an excellent choice of albums, not to mention a varied one, in its year-by-year charts). The site’s charts were updated this week, so this snapshot is about as current as it gets, and should hopefully point you in the direction of some absolutely fantastic heavy releases from this year. Here’s hoping the rest of 2015 can continue to provide us with an equal or greater number of top-quality listening experiences.

  1. Leprous – The Congregation
  2. Paradise Lost – The Plague Within
  3. Enslaved – In Times
  4. Tribulation – The Children of the Night
  5. Napalm Death – Apex Predator – Easy Meat
  6. Melechesh – Enki
  7. Kamelot – Haven
  8. Leviathan – Scar Sighted
  9. Sulphur Aeon – Gateway to the Antisphere
  10. Enforcer – From Beyond
  11. Misþyrming – Söngvar elds og óreiðu
  12. Moonspell – Extinct
  13. Obsequiae – Aria of Vernal Tombs
  14. Visigoth – The Revenant King
  15. Nightwish – Endless Forms Most Beautiful
  16. Blind Guardian – Beyond the Red Mirror
  17. Cain’s Offering – Stormcrow
  18. Shape of Despair – Monotony Fields
  19. Pyramaze – Disciples of the Sun
  20. Jorn Lande & Trond Holter – Dracula: Swing of Death
  21. The Gentle Storm – The Diary
  22. Orden Ogan – Ravenhead
  23. Arcane – Known – Learned
  24. Monolord – Vænir
  25. Ad Nauseam – Nihil Quam Vacuitas Ordinatum Est
  26. Gruesome – Savage Land
  27. Midnight Odyssey – Shards of Silver Fade
  28. Bosse-de-Nage – All Fours
  29. Ghost Bath – Moonlover
  30. Civil War – Gods and Generals
  31. Arcturus – Arcturian
  32. A Forest of Stars – Beware the Sword You Cannot See
  33. Der Weg einer Freiheit – Stellar
  34. Glaciation – Sur les falaises de marbre
  35. Angelus Apatrida – Hidden Evolution
  36. Akhlys – The Dreaming I
  37. Desolate Shrine – The Heart of the Netherworld
  38. Luca Turilli’s Rhapsody – Prometheus, Symphonia Ignis Divinus
  39. High on Fire – Luminiferous
  40. Wilderun – Sleep at the Edge of the Earth
  41. Guardians of Time – Rage and Fire
  42. Entrails – Obliteration
  43. Thurisaz – The Pulse of Mourning
  44. Wind Rose – Wardens of the West Wind
  45. Judicator – At the Expense of Humanity
  46. Sorcerer – In the Shadow of the Inverted Cross
  47. Infernal War – Axiom
  48. Forefather – Curse of the Cwelled
  49. Drudkh – A Furrow Cut Short
  50. Faith No More – Sol Invictus
  51. Bell Witch – Four Phantoms
  52. Sarpanitum – Blessed Be My Brothers
  53. Phantom Winter – Cvlt
  54. Finsterforst – Mach dich frei
  55. Distillator – Revolutionary Cells
  56. Ensiferum – One Man Army
  57. Unleashed – Dawn of the Nine
  58. Alkaloid – The Malkuth Grimoire
  59. Armored Saint – Win Hands Down
  60. Vola – Inmazes
  61. Tempel – The Moon Lit Our Path
  62. Peste Noire – La Chaise-Dyable
  63. Macabre Omen – Gods of War – At War
  64. Winterage – The Harmonic Passage
  65. Rosetta – Quintessential Ephemera
  66. Damnation Angels – The Valiant Fire
  67. Between the Buried and Me – Coma Ecliptic
  68. Native Construct – Quiet World
  69. Serious Black – As Daylight Breaks
  70. Barren Earth – On Lonely Towers
  71. Crypt Sermon – Out of the Garden
  72. Chaos Divine – Colliding Skies
  73. Minsk – The Crash & the Draw
  74. Thou & The Body – You, Whom I Have Always Hated
  75. Ufomammut – Ecate
  76. Chapel of Disease – The Mysterious Ways of Repetitive Art
  77. Dødheimsgard – A Umbra Omega
  78. Red Apollo – Altruist
  79. Magic Kingdom – Savage Requiem
  80. Subterranean Masquerade – The Grand Bazaar
  81. Goatsnake – Black Age Blues
  82. Kroda – Ginnungagap Ginnungagaldr Ginnungakaos
  83. Frosttide – Blood Oath
  84. Ruby the Hatchet – Valley of the Snake
  85. Helloween – My God-Given Right
  86. Ascendia – The Lion and the Jester
  87. An Autumn for Crippled Children – The Long Goodbye
  88. Kiske / Somerville – City of Heroes
  89. Periphery – Juggernaut: Omega
  90. Ethereal Shroud – They Became the Falling Ash
  91. Marduk – Frontschwein
  92. Noisem – Blossoming Decay
  93. Pyramids – A Northern Meadow
  94. Mechina – Acheron
  95. John Zorn – Simulacrum
  96. Valkyrie – Shadows
  97. Lucifer – Lucifer I
  98. Acid King – Middle of Nowhere, Center of Everywhere
  99. Izah – Sistere
  100. Dopethrone – Hochelaga

What do you think? Is anything likely to knock Leprous’ The Congregation from the top spot? Feel that Paradise Lost’s The Plague Within is overrated at number 2 currently? Are there new releases that you think belong in this top 100 that don’t currently appear? Have your say in the comments!

Terrorizer #260: [8]+

Releases that scored [8] or more in Terrorizer magazine #260

I got the newest issue of Terrorizer, issue #260, on my way down to Temples Festival, but have been so busy with copy-editing work that it’s only now that I’ve had time to sit and go through the reviews properly and pick out all those glorious ones that scored [8] or more. It’s not as high-scoring a month as the previous issue, but there have been some really great albums reviewed this year so far, and this issue does not buck that trend. The album of the month, in particular, Sigh’s Graveward, which I mentioned a number of weeks ago on this blog, is a triumphantly deranged piece of avant-garde extreme metal that everyone should hear at least a few times before making their minds up. As Ed Chapman at Terrorizer sums it up:

“It sounds like it’s come from an alternate dimension to show us what heavy metal could be like if only more bands were this ambitious.”

On top of that, the new Leprous album, The Congregation, is a definite contender for my album of the year (although there have admittedly been quite a few already)! Highly recommended if you’re looking for some of the most immaculate and cohesive arrangements in contemporary metal today.

So, this month’s albums, along with Spotify links where applicable, are as follows:

  • Dead Existence – Endless Misery [8] (Spotify)
  • Decayed – Into the Depths of Hell [8]
  • Fórn – The Departure of Consciousness [8] (Spotify)
  • Genocide Pact – Forged through Domination [8]
  • Goatsnake – Black Age Blues [8.5] (Spotify)
  • God Dethroned – The Ancient Ones [8]
  • Gorgoroth – Instinctus Bestisalis [8] (Spotify)
  • Helloween – My God-Given Right [8] (Spotify)
  • Invertebrate – Regression/Devolution [8.5]
  • Leechfeast / Meth Drinker – Split [8]
  • Leprous – The Congregation [9] (Spotify)
  • Macabre Omen – Gods of War – at War [8.5]
  • Maruta – Remain Dystopian [8] (Spotify)
  • Ninkharsag – Blood of Celestial Kings [8] (Spotify)
  • Obsequiae – Aria of Vernal Tombs [8] (Spotify)
  • Paradise Lost – The Plague Within [8.5] (Spotify)
  • Prurient – Frozen Niagara Falls [8] (Spotify)
  • Sigh – Graveward [9] (Spotify) (Album of the Month)
  • The Sun Explodes – The Calm, the Storm [8] (Spotify)
  • Tau Cross – Tau Cross [8] (Spotify)
  • Throat – Short Circuit [8]
  • Will Haven – Open the Mind to Discomfort [8] (Spotify)
  • Winterfylleth – The Fathers of Albion: An Anthology 2007-2013 [8] (Spotify)

As always, any feedback or comments are greatly appreciated. Let me know if you discover any gems among these new releases.

Terrorizer #260 Cover (Goatsnake)
Terrorizer #260 Cover (Goatsnake)

Metal for the 2010s

Top 100 Metal Albums of the 2010s

Following on from my last post about the Rate Your Music best metal albums of all time, I thought I’d focus on making things a bit more contemporary and relevant to today’s music scene. So I set the limits on the chart system to show me the best metal albums again, but this time from the 2010s, and have added all of these to my Spotify collection. Once again, the list is not set in stone, and will be likely to change a lot more due to its more up-to-date and current nature in comparison with a more ‘rigid’ all-time list. So here are the best 100 metal albums from the 2010s, as they were as of the writing of this post. No embedded or linked playlist this time, since these are now the entirety of my Spotify ‘Your Music’ collection, which at this time is not browsable by anyone else, but you can see the list over at Rate Your Music here.

  1. Deathspell Omega – Paracletus
  2. Vektor – Outer Isolation
  3. Agalloch – Marrow of the Spirit
  4. Gorguts – Colored Sands
  5. Enslaved – Axioma Ethica Odini
  6. Converge – All We Love We Leave Behind
  7. Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats – Blood Lust
  8. Blindead – Affliction XXIX II MXMVI
  9. Inquisition – Ominous Doctrines of the Perpetual Mystical Macrocosm
  10. Elder – Dead Roots Stirring
  11. Ne Obliviscaris – Portal of I
  12. Leprous – Bilateral
  13. Enslaved – RIITIIR
  14. Deafheaven – Sunbather
  15. Haken – Visions
  16. Alcest – Écailles de lune
  17. Thy Catafalque – Rengeteg
  18. Ihsahn – After
  19. Septicflesh – The Great Mass
  20. Gris – À l’âme enflammée, l’âme constellée…
  21. Moonsorrow – Varjoina kuljemme kuolleiden maassa
  22. Deftones – Koi no yokan
  23. Seventh  Wonder – The Great Escape
  24. Esoteric – Paragon of Dissonance
  25. Accept – Blood of the Nations
  26. Ne Obliviscaris – Citadel
  27. Sólstafir – Svartir Sandar
  28. Avatarium – Avatarium
  29. Threshold – March of Progress
  30. Nails – Unsilent Death
  31. Haken – The Mountain
  32. Subrosa – More Constant Than the Gods
  33. Behemoth – The Satanist
  34. Cult of Luna – Vertikal
  35. Be’lakor – Of Breath and Bone
  36. Insomnium – One for Sorrow
  37. Overkill – Ironbound
  38. Woods of Desolation – Torn beyond Reason
  39. Primordial – Redemption at the Puritan’s Hand
  40. Mgła – With Hearts Toward None
  41. Blind Guardian – At the Edge of Time
  42. Cattle Decapitation – Monolith of Inhumanity
  43. Leprous – Coal
  44. Saor – Aura
  45. Triptykon – Melana Chasmata
  46. Àrsaidh – Roots
  47. Midnight – Satanic Royalty
  48. Primordial – Where Greater Men Have Fallen
  49. Blood Ceremony – Living with the Ancients
  50. Triptykon – Eparistera Daimones
  51. Between the Buried and Me – The Parallax II: Future Sequence
  52. Murmuüre – Murmuüre
  53. Galneryus – Resurrection
  54. Carcass – Surgical Steel
  55. Mastodon – Once More ‘Round the Sun
  56. Atoma – Skylight
  57. Deftones – Diamond Eyes
  58. Darkspace – Dark Space III I
  59. Dir en Grey – Arche
  60. Mastodon – The Hunter
  61. Inquisition – Obscure Verses for the Multiverse
  62. Immolation – Majesty and Decay
  63. Satan – Life Sentence
  64. Myrath – Tales of the Sands
  65. Mournful Congregation – The Book of Kings
  66. Omnium Gatherum – New World Shadows
  67. Aquilus – Griseus
  68. The Dillinger Escape Plan – One of Us Is the Killer
  69. Dordeduh – Dar de duh
  70. Summoning – Old Mornings Dawn
  71. Star One – Victims of the Modern Age
  72. Enslaved – In Times
  73. Beyond Creation – The Aura
  74. Panopticon – Roads to the North
  75. Hell – Human Remains
  76. Altar of Plagues – Teethed Glory and Injury
  77. The Ocean – Pelagial
  78. Todtgelichter – Angst
  79. Devin Townsend Project – Deconstruction
  80. Dead Congregation – Promulgation of the Fall
  81. Theocracy – As the World Bleeds
  82. Hell – Curse & Chapter
  83. Ancient Bards – Soulless Child
  84. Nails – Abandon All Life
  85. Symphony X – Iconoclast
  86. Year of No Light – Ausserwelt
  87. Ash Borer / Fell Voices – Ash Borer / Fell Voices
  88. Svartidauði – Flesh Cathedral
  89. Uneven Structure – Februus
  90. Arch / Matheos – Sympathetic Resonance
  91. Ulcerate – The Destroyers of All
  92. Cormorant – Dwellings
  93. Testament – Dark Roots of Earth
  94. Mors Principium Est – …And God Said Live
  95. Cult of Fire – मृत्यु का तापसी अनुध्यान
  96. Soilwork – The Living Infinite
  97. Dragonland – Under the Grey Banner
  98. Ufomammut – Eve
  99. Blindead – Absence
  100. Insomnium – Shadows of the Dying Sun

I hope you are turned on to some excellent releases through this list. There are a few that aren’t available on Spotify, but these are generally available with a quick search on Bandcamp or Youtube if you’re curious to check them out. Otherwise, the (nearly) full list of albums makes for a truly excellent, and contemporary, shuffled listening experience. Not to mention an excellent collage of album covers…

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