Thumbs up: +15
It's 2014. So yeah.

Created by: Neachy | 22.01.2014



1. The Great Old Ones - Tekeli-Li
(9.5) (Post-Black) TGOO have emerged to join the elite of French metal. What is created here is as haunting as it is magnificent.
2. Chaos Moon - Resurrection Extract
(9) (Atmospheric Black) One of the best atmospheric black metal albums I've heard in years. The densely layered, heavily distorted guitar takes center stage on most of the tracks. The vocals are fantastic. The percussion is buried in the mix for the majority of the album. Never been a fan of this guy's work before this album. He has my attention now and at some point I will certainly check out his discography again.
3. Infestus - The Reflecting Void
(9) (Black) An amazing, varied album. Emotional, progressive, almost jazzy passages meld seamlessly with some of the best black metal riffs I've heard.
4. Emptiness - Nothing But The Whole
(9) (Blackened Death) The riffs on this album are fantastic but I think it's the mood conveyed that really won me over. The band doesn't seem overly concerned with being 'heavy' or showing off in a technical way. Excellent pacing, use of distortion and growled vocals.
5. Vanhelgd - Relics of Sulphur Salvation
(9) (Death) The riffs. Bow to the fucking riffs, pleb.
6. Yob - Clearing The Path To Ascend
(8.5) (Stoner/Psychedelic Doom)
7. Pallbearer - Foundations of Burden
(8.5) (Doom)
8. Spectral Lore - III
(8.5) (Ambient Black) This is very much a progressive metal album. I enjoyed it just as much, if not more than Sentinel. Not as avant-garde sounding but feels more like a single album rather than the way the 30 minute ambient track was tacked onto the end of Sentinel. III manages to be relaxing at points but even at over 80 minutes, is never boring.
9. Slugdge - Gastronomicon
(8.5) (Blackened Death) Fantastic record. Thought it started off a bit slow with the first two or three tracks. "The Sound of Mucus" really caught my attention and I was hooked from there.
10. ION - ION
(8.5) (Ambient Post-Black) This band out of San Francisco combines a psychedelic ambient atmosphere with post-black sounds to create something spacious and hard hitting.
11. Coffinworm - IV.I.VIII
(8.5) (Blackened Sludge/Doom) Coffinworm creates an ominous and vitriolic sound here. There's a good amount of variation in the songwriting so despite an often trudging pace, it never feels monotonous. The vocals vary between deep, chesty growls and ear-ripping, vein-bulging, throat destroying screams.
12. Mayhem - Esoteric Warfare
(8) (Black) Mayhem always meets or exceeds expectations. This band is still at the top of their game after 25+ years. A rarity in extreme metal.
13. Lethian Dreams - Red Silence Lodge
(8) (Atmospheric Doom) Quite a beautiful female-fronted doom album with post-metal tendencies.
14. Epistasis - Light Through Dead Glass
(8) (Experimental Black) "Amy Mills's ghastly scream drifts vaporously behind those twisted, lurching grooves and blackened blasts, often trading off with the gorgeously ghostly sound of her trumpet bleating in the darkness, strains of spectral jazziness echoing through the depths beneath the band's complex, metallic assault." Though it clocks in at less than 30 minutes this album packs a dissonant punch.
15. Saor - Aura
(8) (Atmospheric Blackened Celtic Folk) The Celtic folk and black metal sounds are woven together beautifully on this album. Normally when I hear celtic elements in metal the results are disastrous as the metal itself is weak. Here, the result is triumphant and epic.
16. Dirge - Hyperion
(8) (Post-Sludge) Dirge sits at the top of the modern post metal genre in my opinion. This album solidifies that. Heavy passages that hit you bluntly like a baseball bat compliment brooding industrial parts that let your mind wander.
17. Fluisteraars - Dromers
(8) (Atmospheric Black) Fans of Drudkh and Agalloch should enjoy this debut album out of The Netherlands. Very melodic with rock sensibilities.
18. Bölzer - Soma
(8) Death
19. Corpsessed - Abysmal Thresholds
(8) (Death) Very strong, mid-paced album. Don't care much for the production but the performance is terrific.
20. Dephosphorus - Ravenous Solemnity
(8) (Black/Grindcore) Lots of twists and turns throughout. Very full, crisp production. Vocals often remind me of early Burzum.
21. Grey Widow - I
(8) (Blackened Sludge/Stoner Doom) Their bandcamp page says it best: "Nihilistic putrid fuckin hatred". Just a fantastically ugly record.
22. Blut Aus Nord - Triunity [Split]
(8) Industrial Black/Doom
23. Terra Tenebrosa - V.I.T.R.I.O.L. - Purging The Tunnels
(8) Extreme Avant-Garde/Ambient
24. Gnaw Their Tongues - Dyodyo Asema [Collaboration]
(8) Experimental Blackened Sludge/Noise/Drone
25. Plebeian Grandstand - Lowgazers
(8) (Blackened Hardcore) Reminds me a bit of Castevet. More intense but less varied. Still owe this record a few more listens.
26. Svartidauði - The Synthesis of Whore and Beast
(8) Black
27. Nasheim - Solens Vemod
(7.5) Atmospheric Black
28. Orgone - The Joyless Parson
(7.5) (Tech Death) I'm not typically a fan of tech-death but this album steps outside of the normal, samey tech-death realm and creates a space all it's own.
29. Agalloch - The Serpent & The Sphere
(7.5) (Atmospheric Blackened Doom/Folk) I found the first 13 or so minutes of this album to be quite boring and unremarkable. However, starting with the track Dark Matter Gods, Agalloch managed to win me over yet again.
30. Blut aus Nord - Debemur Morti
(7.5) (Industrial Black) Nothing mind-blowing or unexpected here. Three very good tracks to add to Blut aus Nord's stellar discography.
31. Sun Worship - Elder Giants
(7.5) (Pagan Black) Heavy WITTR influence is immediately noticeable. I would say this album is slightly more riff oriented than most of WITTR's work though. Album is pay what you want on Bandcamp and is well worth a listen.
32. Minthe - Bleakly, Providence
(7.5) (Atmospheric/Ambient/Industrial Black) Very slow paced as far as percussion is concerned (for black metal). Vocals are similar to Lurker of Chalice. An omnipresent wall of guitar distortion suffocates bleak melodies.
33. Monolord - Empress Rising
(7.5) Stoner Doom
34. Mastodon - Once More 'Round The Sun
(7.5) (Progressive Stoner) Mastodon have regained my respect with this album. So much more effort in every aspect on this one as compared to The Hunter.
35. sleepmakeswaves - Love of Cartography
(7.5) Instrumental Post-Rock
36. Tombs - Savage Gold
(7.5) (Blackened Post-Sludge) I've more or less felt the same about every release by these guys: enjoyable album/sound and very well performed but not something that draws me back for repeat listens.
37. Cloak of Altering - Plague Beasts
(7.5) Avant-Garde Black
38. Noctem - Exilium
(7.5) (Melodic Black/Death/Thrash) Many parts are too thrash for my taste but plenty of intense/heavy black metal sections make this thing well worth a few listens.
39. Doctor Livingstone - Contemptus Saeculi
(7.5) (Blackened Hardcore Punk) These Frenchmen use a mix of blackened and punk vocals. The bass is louder in the mix than the guitars most of the time. Almost dips into grindcore territory at times.
40. Jute Gyte - Vast Chains
(7.5) (Experimental Black/Doom) Insane. If you like De Magia Veterum there's a good chance this might interest you.
41. Petrychor - Makrokosmos
(7.5) Ambient Space Black with touches of Folk and Industrial
42. Indian - From All Purity
(7.5) (Blackened Sludge/Doom) Despite the absolutely filthy tone and production, the vocals are the stand-out here. To me, Indian is going for a very similar sound to Coffinworm but where the latter manages to keep things interesting by changing pace often enough, many parts of From All Purity lapse into boring chugga chugga riffing for too long. I enjoy the vocals just as much as (maybe even a little more than) Coffinworm. It seems the vocalist is putting everything he has into this recording, combining black metal and hardcore vocal techniques to let loose something truly bloodcurdling.
43. Morbus Chron - Sweven
(7.5) (Progressive Death) Think Death meets early King Crimson.
44. Thou - Heathen
(7.5) Sludge/Doom
45. Triptykon - Melana Chasmata
(7) (Blackened Thrash/Death) Try your hardest not to headbang throughout this. You won't be able to control yourself.
46. Skogen - I Döden
(7) (Atmospheric Pagan Black) Well done with some folksy parts sprinkled in but not original enough to shine through the crowd of the genre.
47. Artificial Brain - Labyrinth Constellation
(7) Sci-Fi Tech Death
48. Alraune - The Process of Self-Immolation
(7) USBM
49. Panopticon - Roads To The North
(7) Black/Americana
50. Paramnesia - Paramnesia
(7) (Atmospheric Black) More or less typical wall-of-sound aesthetics with shrieked vocals buried in the mix. Good overall sound.
51. Taurus - No/Thing
(7) Avant-Garde/Psychedelic Sludge
52. Botanist - VI: Flora
(7) Experimental Black
53. Hark - Crystalline
(7) Stoner Sludge
54. Dead Congregation - Promulgation of the Fall
(7) Death
55. Monarch - Sabbracadaver
(7) Drone Doom
56. Bongripper - Miserable
(7) Instrumental Stoner Doom
57. Rintrah - Salt of the Earth
(7) Psychedelic Stoner
58. Woods of Desolation - As The Stars
(7) (Atmospheric/Depressive Black) Mid-paced drums, tremolo melodies and wretched vocals. As formulaic as an atmospheric black metal album can be. Well performed but nothing special.
59. Graveborne - Through The Window of The Night
(7) (Black) Good riffs and whatnot but entirely forgettable.
60. Tortorum - Katabasis
(7) Black
61. Nachtmystium - The World We Left Behind
(7) Black
62. Hoth - Oathbreaker
(7) (Epic Melodic Black) This band out of Seattle is to Star Wars what Summoning is to LOTR. This album seems to tell the story of Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader. I don't really care for the vocals.
63. Hexis - Abalam
(7) (Blackened Hardcore) Hexis pulls no punches in the vein of Nails. A little more substance to grab onto here though.
64. Aenaon - Extance
(7) (Blackened Progressive/Avant-Garde) The incorporation of unorthodox instruments such as the saxophone and harmonica was not needed. Vocals are average. Other than that, pretty good album.
65. Fäulnis - Snuff // Hiroshima
(7) (Black) Sounds more akin to Swedish black metal than their German origin. Also has a depressive vibe to it. Lyrics are in German.
66. Lantlôs - Melting Sun
(7) Post-Rock/Shoegaze
67. Hail Spirit Noir - Oi Magoi
(7) (Blackened Prog/Psychedelia) As much as I loved HSN's first album this one missed the mark for me. They dipped too far into the nostalgic sound of old psychedelia the way Opeth did on Heritage and Oranssi Pazuzu did on Valonieu. I may listen to it again later in the year to see if it hits me differently but for now it sits firmly in the 'disappointment' category.
68. Mutilation Rites - Harbinger
(6.5) Black/Crust
69. Fallujah - The Flesh Prevails
(6.5) Tech Death/Shoegaze
70. Cold Body Radiation - A Clear Path
(6.5) Post-Rock/Shoegaze
71. Belphegor - Conjuring The Dead
(6.5) Blackened Death
72. Wolvhammer - Clawing Into Black Sun
(6.5) Blackened Sludge
73. Lord Mantis - Death Mask
(6.5) Blackened Sludge
74. The Atlas Moth - The Old Believer
(6.5) Psychedelic Stoner
75. Abigor - Leytmotif Luzifer - The 7 Temptations Of Man
(6.5) Black
76. Auroch - Taman Shud
(6.5) (Blackened Brutal Death) Absolutely love the artwork. The music kinda sucks though. Unfortunate.
77. Black Anvil - Hail Death
(6.5) Blackened Thrash
78. Dol Kruug - Eat Me
(6.5) Electronic Tech Death
79. Mars Red Sky - Stranded In Arcadia
(6.5) (Stoner) Falsetto vocals and overly simplistic heavy, fuzzed out riffs.
80. Woland - Hyperion
(6.5) (Technical/Groove/Post-Black/Djent) Blackened vocals, groove thrash guitars, djenty bass and lots of double bass drums. Comes together very well at points. Falls flat at others.
81. A Dying God - Anthems To Ascension
(6.5) (Black/Grindcore) Pretty standard sound despite the intriguing lyrical themes.
82. Wolves In The Throne Room - Celestite
(6) Ambient
83. Thantifaxath - Sacred White Noise
(6) Ambient Black
84. Behemoth - The Satanist
(6) Death
85. Crib45 - Marching Through The Borderlines
(6) Atmospheric Sludge
86. Stigmhate - Zodacare Od Zodameranu
(6) Black
87. Ceremonial Castings - Cthulhu
(6) Black
88. Twilight - III: Beneath Trident's Tomb
(6) Black
89. Conan - Blood Eagle
(6) Stoner Doom
90. Ill Omen - Enthroning The Bonds of Abhorrence
(6) (Occult Black) Trudging and bland.
91. Oruga - Blackened Souls
(6) Stoner Sludge
92. Avichi - Catharsis Absolute
(6) (Black) Bland and mediocre. Nothing really stands out.
93. Harakiri For The Sky - Aokigahara
(6) (Blackgaze) Black metal meets emo slathered in shoegaze. I guess this trend isn't going away.
94. Opeth - Pale Communion
(5) Prog
95. Benighted - Carnivore Sublime
(5) Deathgrind
96. Akroma - La Cène
(5) Symphonic Black
97. Alcest - Shelter
(4) Shoegaze



Disclaimer: All top lists are unofficial and do not represent the point of view of the MS Staff.
[ More lists by Neachy ]



Comments

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tea[m]ster - 09.02.2014 at 18:50  
Lol. we almost have the same summary for WoD...I swear i didn't copy ! Too funny!!
Neachy - 13.02.2014 at 23:54  
Written by tea[m]ster on 09.02.2014 at 18:50

Lol. we almost have the same summary for WoD...I swear i didn't copy ! Too funny!!

You seem to have enjoyed it a lot more than I did though. Your comparison to Fen is pretty fitting as well... Are you looking forward to the new Dirge album as much as I am?
Alex Fenger - 25.02.2014 at 05:41  
As usual your list will probably be the only "year list" I keep track of, so I'm interested in what you think of the new; Shattered Hope, Nadja, Alkerdeel/Gnaw Their Tongues, Blut Aus Nord, and Slough Feg.
Neachy - 26.02.2014 at 00:09  
Written by Alex Fenger on 25.02.2014 at 05:41

As usual your list will probably be the only "year list" I keep track of, so I'm interested in what you think of the new; Shattered Hope, Nadja, Alkerdeel/Gnaw Their Tongues, Blut Aus Nord, and Slough Feg.

I've been really busy the past few months with work and school so my ability to keep up with new releases has suffered a bit. But I'll be back at full capacity in a couple months.I will be sure to check the three of those I've yet to hear (Shattered Hope, Nadja and Slough Feg) and re-listen to the other two for the list. I enjoyed them the first time I heard them but I kind of pushed them aside because they aren't full-lengths.
Diverge - 09.03.2014 at 02:28  
I really need to check out Coffinworm. Thanks for the reminder.
mz - 09.03.2014 at 02:35  
Written by Diverge on 09.03.2014 at 02:28

I really need to check out Coffinworm. Thanks for the reminder.

Just listened to it tonight for a couple of times. It's even better than their debut. I think you'll like their new record.
Alex Fenger - 11.08.2014 at 22:36  
The new Epistasis is up there in my "AsOTY" list. Phenomenal. Thanks for inadvertently reminding me to listen to it
Alex Fenger - 15.08.2014 at 20:11  
Two things you need to throw on this list would be Merkabah and Profetus
mz - 16.08.2014 at 00:27  
I wonder what you think about Impetuous Ritual - Unholy Congregation Of Hypocritical Ambivalence, Mortals- Cursed To See The Future , Skáphe - Skáphe , Los Random - Pidanoma , Howls Of Ebb - Vigils Of The 3rd Eye , Domains - Sinister Ceremonies, Bast - Spectres.
Lit. - 16.08.2014 at 03:21  
You also need some Goatwhore, brother.
tea[m]ster - Today at 03:47  
Thanks to you, I checked out Chaos Moon...and I am glad I did. Wow, huge surprise...and thanks for the rec.

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