2018


Another year. Another 50 kickass albums. I've added a few albums that I think are fairly shitty but seem to be getting an undue amount of year-end love down at the bottom. Feel free to toss recommendations my way.

Created by: Neachy | 14.03.2018



1. Ars Magna Umbrae - Lunar Ascension
(9.5) (Black) Ars Magna Umbrae is a one man band out of Poland. A debut EP was released just last year. I remember hearing it and thinking it was pretty ok but I never came back to it. Upon hearing the project's first LP I was blown away. This is the type of black metal album I've been searching for all year. Hits all the right notes for my taste. Dissonant, mid paced, cacophonous, a hint of progressive undertones and fantastic black metal vocals. The album art is pictured above. Fantastic all around.
2. P.H.O.B.O.S. - Phlogiston Catharsis
(9) (Industrial Doom/Black) This is next level. The album gets better as it progresses. More accessible than their last album without being dumbed down.
3. Carpe Noctem - Vitrun
(9) (Black/Blackened Doom) After hearing the first track released from this album I was worried this would be a bore. Worries alleviated. Carpe Noctem is back with an abrasive, apocalyptic vengeance.
4. 1914 - The Blind Leading The Blind
(9) (Black/Death) Hot damn. Had this album bouncing around in my "Need To Listen" queue for a while. Finally threw it on on a whim. This is top notch. An auditory ode to the barbaric bloodbath that is now referred to as World War I. The sample use really adds to the forlorn atmosphere and makes the album gel in a fulfilling way that sticks with the listener.
5. Esoctrilihum - Pandaemorthium (Forbidden Formulas To Awaken The Blind Sovereigns Of Nothingness)
(9) (Black/Death) Was not expecting these sounds to come from this band. His last album from less than a year ago was fairly standard atmospheric black metal. This is fully in the realm of twisted avant-gardeish blackened death metal.
6. Délirant - Délirant
(9) (Psychedelic Black) Whoa. December has seen the release of more than it's fair share of awesome records. This one, which I think can be counted amount Fallen Empire's swan song of releases is amount the best of the bunch. Muddy (in the best possible way), ominous, twisted and trippy. Délirant is the work of the guy who also does Negativa and seems to be a member of Mytiskaos. So look out for more from this up-and-comer in the near future.
7. Dirge - Lost Empyrean
(9) (Post-Metal) Threw this album on in my work truck on a long drive home. Reminded me of why I used to favor post metal. Crank it up loud and let your thoughts swim among the infinite layers of guitar. The production here is perfect. This is probably their best album and without a doubt the best post metal I've heard in years.
8. Vanhelgd - Deimos Sanktuarium
(8.5) (Death) You should know what to expect from these guys by now. If you don't, this list probably isn't for you anyway. Move along.
9. Death. Void. Terror. - To The Great Monolith
(8.5) Black
10. Negativa - 03
(8.5) (Black) Black metal + audible bass is such a winning combo to my ears. This Spanish act has added H.V. of Wormlust fame on vocals which is pretty fucking rad but srsly get back to putting the finishing touches on that sophomore album you announced like 5 years ago now. This album is a slab of dank black metal on it's own merits. 03 has quickly become one of my favorite records of the year due to its versatility. Good walking music, working music, driving music and also great for a listen at home on quality head phones.
11. Muyubyosha - 一期一会
(8.5) (Black/Krautrock/Noise) Their 2016 record was great, this is fan-fucking-tastic. Overall, the album is a little on the short side but better to leave them wanting more than to bore. You haven't heard anything like this before. Give it a try.
12. Convulsing - Grievous
(8.5) (Blackened Death) DIY one man 4 appeals to me artistically in a way a full band cannot. This is not your standard blackened death. This is a piece of art.
13. Eosphoros - Eosphoros
(8.5) (Black/Post/Atmospheric) Between the cover art and the band being from Portland, I avoided this album for a while assuming it was bog standard cascadian black metal. It is not. There is a bit of that present, sure. But the riffs are often crunchy and the vibe is darker than the cover art lets on.
14. Guðveiki - Vængför
(8.5) (Blackened Death) Guðveiki combines the powers of H.V. of Wormlust, Alex Poole of Chaos Moon/Skaphe and the Blackburn brothers of Entheogen to create a blackened death metal tour de force. The release of this album is bittersweet as it signals the demise of one of my favorite record labels of the last few years, Fallen Empire.
15. Burial Invocation - Abiogenesis
(8.5) (Death)
16. Khanus - Flammarion
(8.5) (Occult Death) The genre tag tells you everything you need to know before diving into this record. Undoubtedly one of the best of the year.
17. Death Karma - The History Of Death & Burial Rituals Part II
(8) (Black/Death) This is stronger than I recall the first album of this project being. Very melodic and bouncy much like CoF. There's a few noticable nods to the various cultures in a few of the songs but for the most part sticks to the main overall aesthetic throughout.
18. Teleport - The Expansion
(8) (Progressive Death) Next level death metal out of Slovenia on this EP. Need more of this. Thrashy with modern sensibilities. Sort of comparable to Horrendous but with vocals I enjoy a lot more.
19. Ab Imo Pectore - Heaven, Hell, Earth, Chaos, All
(8) (Black) Raw, modern black metal out of Portugal. Mid-paced but slows down to a crawl at times to induce an ominous ritualistic vibe.
20. Wayfarer - World's Blood
(8) (Western Black) This is like a more straightforward black metal version of of Horseback's The Invisible Mountain. Considering I love that album and the black metal here is well done, this gets a major thumbs up from me.
21. Kalmen - Funeral Seas
(8) (Black/Doom) Excellent blend of black and doom metal by this German band. Maintains a fairly slow to mid pace throughout but never fails to keep it interesting.
22. Barús - Drowned
(8) (Progressive Death) These guys kicked major ass on their debut EP a few years ago. Lo and behold; they still have it. Strong blend of technical and progressive death elements without getting too far up their own asses about it.
23. Zeal & Ardor - Stranger Fruit
(8) (Avant-Garde/Black) I liked Z&A's first album as much as the next guy. But the hipster love spewed all over this album made me want to hate it. It's simply too damn good to hate.
24. Night Verses - From The Gallery Of Sleep
(8) (Progressive/Technical/Instrumental) Really nice slab of highly proficient instrumental metal. A little too technical and djent-y to be something I listen to regularly but a highly enjoyable excursion.
25. Acathexis - Acathexis
(8) (Black) I guess this project features the guy from Mare Cognitum in some fashion. This is far more interesting to me than anything Mare Cognitum has done. Abrasive yet contemplative.
26. Innumerable Forms - Punishment In Flesh
(8) Death Doom
27. Khemmis - Desolation
(8) (Heavy/Doom) Fun head banging riffs, plain and simple. Solid smattering of various styles of doom metal throughout the record.
28. Degredo - A Noite dos Tempos
(8) (Ritualistic Drone/Blackgaze) So apparently there is one of those black metal collectives in Portugal known as the Aldebaran Circle. A double album comprised of 4 tracks and a duration of 75 minutes, this is best listened to while performing an extended satanic ritual.
29. Progenie Terrestre Pura - starCross
(8) (Industrial Black/Ambient) For whatever reason this EP hits me in a more satisfying way than their last full length. Retains the heaviness of the Oltre Luna but its brevity works in its favor as I'm left wanting more.
30. Tomb Mold - Manor Of Infinite Forms
(8) (Death) A solid blend of old school and modern death metal. Not too murky or cavernous. Lets the riffing shine. Headbanging encouraged.
31. Svartmálm - Svartmálm
(8) (Black/Doom) It seems this band hails from the Faroe Islands, a small volcanic archipelago located between Iceland and mainland Europe. This album is a little difficult to pin down, genre-wise but what isn't these days? Just a damn fine record mixing black, death, doom, progressive and ambient tendencies into finely tuned final product.
32. Abyssal - Apanthropinization [Split]
(8) (Blackened Death) So good to hear new Abyssal material. Carcinoma does a fine job on their half of this split. Probably 8 worthy. Abyssal is expectedly great.
33. Master Boot Record - Direct Memory Access
(8) (Electronic Metal) I believe this is the first MBR album to feature vocals. The vocals do a good job of blending seamlessly with the music however.
34. Borgne - [∞]
(8) (Ambient Black) Really nice use of keyboards while still maintaining a dark atmosphere.
35. Haunter - Haunter/Crawl MMXVIII [Split]
(8) (Black/Crust) Haunter kinda nails the "runs with the DsO sound" thing better than most of their contemporaries. Where DsO weaves their way up their own asses with technicality at times (looking at you Fas), Haunter mixes in a crusty, punkish vibe that adds much needed levity to the sound. Crawl is pretty okay too.
36. Hwwauoch - Hwwauoch
(8) (Black) Wasn't into this the first couple times I heard it. But this is the first thing from the Prava Collective that I have enjoyed.
37. Spite - Antimoshiach
(8) (Black) Brooklyn + improvisational black metal + satanic themes screams an ironically concocted, half assed, hipster creation you could find all over bandcamp's top sellers these days. But in this case, this is actually very listenable stuff, mildly reminiscent of Volahn and some other BTC projects.
38. Yith - Immemorial
(8) (Blackened Doom) This record is substantially more doomy than any of Yith's prior works. Conceptually this album is far more removed from human emotion than anything in the back catalogue. This album feels more mature, more dispassionate and more cohesive. But to me it lacks a lot of what makes his prior works unique.
39. Ævangelist - Matricide In The Temple Of Omega
(8) (Psychedelic Black/Death) All the elements are there for this to be something I love. Somehow I don't find it interesting enough over its hour long duration to break into elite territory.
40. Chaos Echśs - Mouvement
(8) (Avant-Garde Death) This isnt as interesting or adventurous as Transient but it is more listenable and easily digestible.
41. Esoctrilihum - Inhüma
(8) (Black/Death) Compared to this project's previous release from this year, this album is more cohesive but provides fewer twists and turns. Still, this is high quality black/death metal.
42. Whoredom Rife - Nid: Hymner Av Hat
(8) Orthodox Black
43. Corpsessed - Impetus Of Death
(8) Death
44. Imperial Triumphant - Vile Luxury
(8) Avant-Garde Blackened Death
45. Morne - To The Night Unknown
(8) Post-Sludge/Crust
46. Depths Above - Ex Nihilo
(8) Post-Metal
47. Hegemone - We Disappear
(8) Post-Metal
48. Mylingar - Döda Drömmar
(7.5) Blackened Death
49. Xenward - Xenward
(7.5) Blackened Dark Ambient
50. Amnutseba - Demo II
(7.5) Black
51. The Most Overrated
52. Yob - Our Raw Heart
This seemed to make every half assed metal writers top albums of the year. But its mediocre at best.
53. Deafheaven - Ordinary Corrupt Human Love
Ordinary Crappy Human Music
54. Portal - Ion
I'm pretty sure no one who claims to like this actually listened to it.
55. Daughters - You Won't Get What You Want
Its awfully reductive to call something hipster drivel. I'm doing it anyway.



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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Comments: 4   Visited by: 40 users
20.09.2018 - 17:55
Alex F
Slick Dick Rick
Surprised to see you rate Khemmis so highly. I honestly thought it was a bit of a step down from Hunted, and generally not that impressive. Regardless, I agree with pretty much everything else on here.
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09.12.2018 - 03:49
Neachy
Written by Alex F on 20.09.2018 at 17:55

Surprised to see you rate Khemmis so highly. I honestly thought it was a bit of a step down from Hunted, and generally not that impressive. Regardless, I agree with pretty much everything else on here.


I listened to it while driving on a road trip, really dug it at the time and threw it on the list as I am wont to do. Didn't listen again til months later and it has slid quite a bit. Still a fun listen. Are you going to do a list this year? Obviously curious what you're digging from this year.
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10.12.2018 - 04:59
Alex F
Slick Dick Rick
Written by Neachy on 09.12.2018 at 03:49

I listened to it while driving on a road trip, really dug it at the time and threw it on the list as I am wont to do. Didn't listen again til months later and it has slid quite a bit. Still a fun listen. Are you going to do a list this year? Obviously curious what you're digging from this year.

I've been thinking about it but haven't had quite enough time to find interesting releases from the year that aren't already on your and Mercurial's lists (both of which have honestly been my primary sources of new music over the past few months). 2019 will likely see me having more free time to devote to new music.
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15.12.2018 - 10:15
Koen Smits
Nice varied list!
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RIP: Frank Vandenbroucke (6 nov 1974 - 12 oct 2009)

Written by Bad English on 05.04.2014 at 15:05

but spoil thius film is like spoil porn and say porn ends whit cum shot ...
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