Here it is folks, what we've all been waiting for! The 2011 Metal Storm Awards results!
The big surprise this year? None, really. Most of the bigger name bands won in their respective categories. Is that a disappointment? In one respect, maybe. Admittedly, the conclusion will always be fairly predictable in competitions like this; the popular vote goes to the popular bands. Sure, that might be a disappointment for some, but in the grand scheme of things, whoever wins is not the spirit of the awards in their entirety. If you took the month of February to peruse all your favorite categories, chances are most of you found some new, great bands to get into.
On the flip side, there's a lot of unknown acts who walk away with a handful of new followers. Any band that made it into the awards this year, regardless of whatever small vote count, will be watched from here on out, perhaps earning a more prominent spot in the awards with future releases down the road. Esoteric made their Metal Storm Award debut in 2004 with Subconscious Dissolution Into The Continuum, racking up an unimpressive 6 votes. This year, they cleared 250. Wolves In The Throne Room tallied 92 two years ago with Black Cascade, this year they dominated their category in a stunning victory with well over 300 votes, standing head-and-shoulders above the second place contestant. So be sure to keep your eyes on bands like Indian, Memory Of A Melody, Konstantin Seleznev, ReinXeed or Sacred Ally. They may not have racked up the votes this year, but that doesn't mean they won't be back with a vengeance in years to come.
The winners? Well, there's too many to list here, but a few notable victories: Amorphis take home the award for best heavy/melodic album of the year for their 3rd time consecutively! The Clandestine Cuts EP/Demo of the year category saw substantially more votes than its inception in 2010, and of course, Metal Storm is that one step closer to world domination; 2011 saw the continuing trend of having exponentially more votes over all than any of the previous years. We used to consider 1000 votes the threshold for awesome... This year saw 15 categories top that mark, two top 1,400 and three see a whopping 1,500+ votes. Thank you to all who helped spread the word! You rule!
We'd also like to thank MetaLouca, Opeth, and Morbid Angel for really stepping their game up and releasing disappointing enough albums to ensure the boring, tired "Wintersun - Time" response didn't medal in the Let Down field. Thanks, guys!
That wraps the year up in a nice little bow. Keep your eyes peeled for the staff picks for the awards, as well as feedback from the winning bands. If you're a regular around here, see you in the forums! If you just stop in for the awards, see you next year!
(You can discuss the results on the news thread, found here.)