The Best Djent / Math Metal - Metal Storm Awards 2016

Warning: contains 5000% more slapping than the human mind can handle.

Animals As Leaders are back again to prove that rhythms can be melodies, bass guitars can be drums, guitars can be slapped and also keyboards, djent can be prog, and guitar solos can be siiiiiiick (some of that you probably knew already). The Madness Of Many is more rhythmically- and percussively-focused than usual, but the technicality dial is still set at Warp Factor 9; there's no competition in this wide world for the AAL brand of mathematical metal.

Meshuggah did what they do best and recorded a full Meshuggah album. That is, a punishing slab of meandering, heavy and polyrhythmic metal - not to mention those totally out-there solos - that's like a return to Destroy, Erase, Improve or Nothing times. Why re-invent the wheel when being purely Meshuggah goodness is more than enough?

Another Djent album, so it's all about the djenty chugs, syncopated rythms, virtuoso technical display and soaring clean vocals, right? Just when you think the wheel has been invented a million times over, Shokran drops this bomb to shake the scene up by adding a Middle Eastern touch to this concept album, which takes you back to the Exodus of the Israelites in Ancient Egypt. Moses must be air-guitaring to at least a few of these songs up there.

Textures are a rare band, always evolving yet keeping true to their unique formula, somewhere between djenty math riffing and progressive songwriting, and Phenotype is no exception. At the same time heavier and more melodic than their previous output, Dualism, and once again subtly different from all they've done before, Phenotype features some fantastic melodies and aggressive polyrhythmic wizardry that are bound to leave you speechless!


›› Full review...
Spastic, homicidal, diverse, and complex, it's the one and only Dillinger. Pouring only the most pungent of hardcore riffs and most rabid of animalistic screeches into the mixer alongside some unusually melodic choruses and strange diversions, Dissociation is a healthy protein shake of aggressive and painful sounds. When it isn't downright noisy, the album is dark and brooding, and it even gets pretty avant-garde at times. It is truly a shame that The Dillinger Escape Plan must leave us so soon, but Dissociation is one hell of a way to go out.


Write-in votes

Architects - All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
Car Bomb - Meta
I Built The Sky - The Sky Is Not The Limit
Periphery - Periphery III: Select Difficulty
Plini - Handmade Cities
Polyphia - Renaissance
Tardive Dyskinesia - Harmonic Confusion
The Algorithm - Brute Force
Twelve Foot Ninja - Outlier