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2015 So Far...

All the albums I've listened to in 2015, from favorite to least favorite, and a small summary.

Created by: FullyOttoMatic | 07.03.2015

1. Shape Of Despair - Monotony Fields
(9.8) Funeral Doom Metal - The comeback I was waiting for, 11 years in the making, and Shape of Despair deliver another heart wrenchingly beautiful and dark album. The melody is as powerful as ever, and as crushing as ever, and the keys really paint a picture of real emptiness and despair. This will be a hard Funeral Doom Metal album to top, but we'll see what Ahab has in store, for now, this will more than satisfy your quench for Doom. EDIT: This album has grown on me even more. I feel so emotionally attached to this album, to every melody, riff, and vocal, it's amazing, almost perfect.
2. Swallow The Sun - Songs From The North I, II & III
(9.8) Melodic Death/Doom / Acoustic Rock / Funeral Doom Metal - I can barely make out words to describe these albums, they're truly magnificent. StS seriously put their heart and soul into this, a triple album is already ballsy, but the amount of effort and feeling put into this alone deserves commemoration regardless of whether or not you actually liked it. The 1st disk, although the weakest, still shows off StS's trademark style in full effect and shows that they have become masters of their craft. The 2nd disk is more calming and moody, with a more acoustic focus and it turns out excellent, I adore Mikko's cleans immensely. I can see a lot of people who don't even listen to Metal to get hooked on this album. The 3rd and final disk is definitely my favorite, being a crushing showcase of dark, punishing Funeral Doom Metal. This is by far the heaviest StS has sounded, and the harsh vocals and guitars just make my skin crawl and my arm hairs stand stiff. It's on the same level of quality as the Shape of Despair album earlier and that's high praise coming from me. To conclude, this massive triple album is absolutely incredible, almost flawless to my ears. StS have outdone themselves.
3. Steven Wilson - Hand. Cannot. Erase.
(9.7) Progressive Rock - This man knows no wrong I swear. A departure from the vintage sound of TRTRTS (AOS) to a more modern Progressive Rock sound with more electronics to back it up. My favorite of his solo work.
4. Leviathan - Scar Sighted
(9.7) Ambient Black Metal - This is some scary shit, scarier than Leviathan typically is I feel. Both disgusting and grand, this takes everything Wrest has done in the past and pumps it up. Highly recommended to any fan of black metal.
5. Ahab - The Boats Of The Glen Carrig
(9.6) Funeral Doom Metal - Well... not quite as good as the SoD album, but fuck it's damn close. This album is a fucking mammoth of an album, combining the crushing heaviness present on their first two albums, with the more calming pieces in The Giant and adding elements of psychedelia and sludge to the mix. The vocals on here also seem incredibly high in quality, Daniel's growls are downright frightening, once again sounding like a hellish sea monster ready to completely devour you, while having very tortured melodic singing, giving a sense of urgency to them soft parts. Ahab is one of my favorite bands, so this may be biased, but this album is brilliant, another masterpiece of Funeral Doom Metal.
6. Midnight Odyssey - Shards Of Silver Fade
(9.6) Ambient Black Metal - This album encapsulated me for two full hours without wanting to change to something else, that's enough to make it in the top 10. Other than that fact, this album is spellbindingly beautiful, with spacey ambient synths featuring more prominently than the previous outing combined with the visceral Black Metal sections make this something amazing. I felt as if I completely a spiritual journey listening to this album, as if I astral projected myself into the cosmos and wondered through space and time. To those looking for beautiful and serene atmospheres, with some Black Metal put in, this is a must.
7. Cattle Decapitation - The Anthropocene Extinction
(9.5) Deathgrind - Jesus fuck, how is this album soooo fantastic. Monolith of Inhumanity I thought would be the pinnacle of what this was capable of in terms of pure heaviness and brutality, but the addition of atmosphere and "clean" vocals took this to a whole new level (I swear, that ambient interlude The Burden of Seven Billion was inspired by Darkspace). I can't pull myself away, this is such a brilliant album, everyone needs to listen to this.
8. Kendrick Lamar - To Pimp a Butterfly
(9.5) Funky Hip-Hop - I know a lot of people on this site don't care about Rap / Hip-Hop at all, but I don't care, because this album is brilliant. Kendrick really stepped it up, saying a lot seeing the album he's following up on, the concept is interesting, wordplay and flow is perfect, and the beats in the background are very inventive. If you're looking for great Hip-Hop music, this is it. And that last track... just, wow.
9. Myrkur - M
(9.4) Atmospheric Black Metal - It's been quite a while since an Atmospheric Black Metal record hit me in such a way as this one did. Although clean passages are what's being heard most of the time, the raw parts are incredibly chaotic and heavy and the singer's voice is just so raw and evil it's great. And then there are the clean parts, which are incredibly atmospheric and beautiful, really feel a sense of tranquility, as if traveling through a foggy forest. If you like anytime of Black Metal or love atmosphere (ie me), you'll love this.
10. Ghost - Meliora
(9.4) Heavy Metal - There have just been sooo many fantastic albums coming out, and this just adds even more to that list. Ghost come back with what made their debut a masterpiece to me, great songwriting, with a little more diversity for more of an effect. I liked their last one too, but this totally destroys that album in every way. Another fantastic release, and with still more to come, bloody hell.
11. Between The Buried And Me - Coma Ecliptic
(9.4) Progressive Metalcore - This album is the embodiment of why BTBAM is one of my all time favorite bands, so much variation throughout. This album is a lot more melodic than the Parallax series, but still has fantastic guitar parts throughout the experience, and there seems to be a bigger focus on the keyboard, helping to raise the epicness to almost a sort of Rock Opera. All this amazing instrumentation is backed by a great concept, very Twilight Zone-y in nature. All in all, a fantastic disc by a consistently fantastic band. Thank you BTBAM.
12. Enslaved - In Times
(9.4) Progressive Black Metal - Another masterpiece. I think I may like this a little more than RIITIIR, but still not quite at the greatness that was Axioma, but that's okay because this is a fantastic showcase of modern Enslaved. Clean vocals also really improved. Great job guys!
13. Chelsea Wolfe - Abyss
(9.3) Drone Doom Metal / Neofolk - The album title says it all, it's the musical equivalent to an audio abyss. The crushing drone in the guitars and bass creates such a dark and oppressing atmosphere yet Wolfe's voice is full of passion and beauty, it's amazing. This is what Soused by Sunn O))) and Scott Walkers should've been like, crushing and twisted.
14. Periphery - Juggernaut: Alpha & Omega
(9.3) Progressive Math Metal - I don't love this as much as I did on my first couple of listens, but I'll be damned if this isn't the best I've heard Periphery. Great concept, great musicianship, and Spencer is at the top of his game.
15. Riverside - Love, Fear And The Time Machine
(9.3) Progressive Rock - This took me off guard, it's a lot different from their other releases. I can't even call them Metal anymore, which isn't a bad thing like since their metallic elements weren't why I loved this band. This album balances a very dreamy atmosphere that they've always done with a more Prog/Acoustic Rock sound, with a clear Steven Wilson and Lightbulb Sun/Stupid Dream era Porcupine Tree influence they go together perfectly to make a beautiful and dreamy album. So, it's not better than their first 4 masterpiecs, but it's truly an entity of its own, and that's why I love it.
16. Lamb Of God - VII: Sturm Und Drang
(9.3) Groove Metal / Metalcore - They did it, Lamb of God made an album that matched, if not exceeded, As The Palace Burns and Ashes of the Wake. Resolution was a good return to the heaviness of old, but this really expands on that with even heavier songs, and with a bit of experimentation thrown in. This is the angriest I've heard Randy, probably ever, letting out screams that I've never heard from him and even showcases that he has a good clean and eerie voice. If you're a LoG fan and you're looking for heaviness, look no further.
17. Deafheaven - New Bermuda
(9.3) Blackgaze - My my, where to start with this album. Definitely a departure from Sunbather, going for a much more sinister and dark tone, which makes this a bit more like their debut in some respects. One thing besides the change in tone that I need to say is how beautiful the Shoegaze/Post-Rock passages sound here, and don't feel out of place in the overall darker atmosphere. Both come together very well and make this very enjoyable. I still prefer Sunbather because I feel it's more interesting to me, but this is absolutely no slouch.
18. Beardfish - +4626-COMFORTZONE
(9.3) Progressive Rock - This band is just awesome, more great Progressive Rock from these guys, you can't go wrong.
19. A Forest Of Stars - Beware The Sword You Cannot See
(9.2) Atmospheric Black Metal - A very unique and weird look at Atmospheric Black Metal, this has a very classy quality to it while at the same time being visceral and beautiful. I especially love the vocals an this record. A very good introduction to a very interesting band.
20. Paradise Lost - The Plague Within
(9.2) Death/Doom Metal - Wow... just wow, this album is just great, finally the first great Doom release this year. Paradise Lost have been getting progressively better since their comeback in 2007 with In Requiem, but this blows all those past releases since then away. The return of the Death Metal vocals is most welcome to my ears and marks one of their best albums in years.
21. My Dying Bride - Feel The Misery
(9.2) Death/Doom Metal - A cheesy album title yes, but don't let that stop you from listening to this cause it's awesome. An improvement on the average For Lies, I Sire and good A Map of All Our Failures is already enough for me to like it, but the softer moments on this album really sold me on this album. The heavy parts were fantastic to, but I feel myself gravitating to the softer parts. The biggest positive though are the vocals, the very moment I heard Aaron's voice on this record, I knew it would be something great. A fantastic disc, look out for it.
22. High On Fire - Luminiferous
(9.2) Sludge Metal - How the fuck is this band so good? Seriously, 7 albums in and they still sound amazing. This album especially, sounds almost thrashy with the pace of the guitars with vocalist Matt Pike letting out screams that 80's Tom Araya would be able to do. This makes it unique over the other releases, but even then, it's still damn great.
23. Misþyrming - Söngvar Elds Og Óreiðu
(9.2) Black Metal - This is a fantastic debut that drips in a very chilling and icy atmosphere, and it makes sense since they're from Iceland. A really dark and dissonant release while maintaining a memorable feel to it. Also has some really chilling dark ambient passages. Really fucking good.
24. Leprous - The Congregation
(9.2) Progressive Metal - My first time hearing Leprous record, and yup, it's as awesome as expected. I hear such a wide array of influences incorporated into their sound, and it all comes together great. Everything from the vocals to the musicianship is so good. Can't wait to go to their past releases to see how they are.
25. Ghost Bath - Moonlover
(9.2) Depressive Black Metal - They really turned up the melancholy and darkness on this album in comparison to their previous album and deliver probably some of the most dismal music this year so far. The howling and unsettling vocals and the bleak melodic guitar parts help add to the somber atmosphere, making it one of my favorites this year thus far.
26. Death Grips - The Powers That B
(9.2) Experimental / Industrial Hip-Hip - Yeah... this album is fucked up, but it's Death Grips so you probably expected that. The chaos and madness seems is very high on this record, still not as much as The Money Store, but really damn close. Dark, chaotic, brutal, it's Death Grips, how can you go wrong.
27. Pyramids - A Northern Meadow
(9.1) Avant-Garde / Shoegaze / Post-Rock - Even as someone who really liked this bands debut album, this still took me a lot of spins to fully appreciate it, and I might still need to spin this more, but what I've heard is glorious. The atmosphere is very thick having elements of beauty and darkness ooze out of every facet of their sound. This is a really difficult album to describe so it'd be better for you to just listen to it on your own.
28. Sigh - Graveward
(9.1) Avant-Garde Black Metal - Weird as fuck is an understatement when it comes to this bands work, but this may be my favorite Sigh album. It's massiveness and trademark weirdness combine together perfectly to make one of my favorite albums this year. This has rejuvenated my love for this band.
29. Death Karma - The History Of Death & Burial Rituals Part I
(9.1) Blackened Death Metal - Holy shit, people were right about this album, it's amazing. Taking the frontman and drummer of Cult of Fire, Death Karma has a lot more Death Metal infused with CoF's Black Metal sound to make it stand out. The only words I can think to describe it is hypnotic and crushing, along with a great sense of groove and melody. Good shit guys.
30. Marilyn Manson - The Pale Emperor
(9.1) Blues / Alternative Metal - If this isn't a comeback album then I don't know what is. Manson has matured a lot, lyrically and musically, on this record and the addition of Blues influence is glorious. Welcome back.
31. Abyssal - Antikatastaseis
(9.0) Atmospheric Blackened Death Metal - How have I missed out on this band, they're awesome. The atmosphere is incredibly dense and layered, with Black Metal styled riffs clashing with incredibly low Death Metal growls and blast beats and create a very dissonant and atmospheric album. Now I need to look back at their other shit, cause this is great, and I hear their other stuff is even better.
32. The Gentle Storm - The Diary
(9.0) Symphonic Metal / Acoustic Folk - Two of my favorite musicians get together and make an extremely interesting and enjoyable concept of having two disks having different styles, but be the same songs. I did like the more metal side because it sounded more epic, but the more folky one is no slouch at all, really great stuff.
33. Dragged Into Sunlight - N.V. [Collaboration]
(9.0) Experimental Blackened Sludge Metal - Can people really be this fucked up? This album is just insane, absolutely insane and I love it for that very reason. It's incredibly visceral and punishing (duh) and just never lets up through the whole experience. It's great, but not quite as extreme as previous stuff by both bands, but that should not stop you from listening.
34. Arcturus - Arcturian
(9.0) Avant-Garde Black Metal - FINALLY got to listening to this album, and yeah, it's pretty awesome. It's just nice to hear more music from this band, such a weird and experimental band and this continues that trend. Chances are you've already listened to this, but if you haven't then WTF ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE?!?
35. TesseracT - Polaris
(9.0) Progressive Math Metal - When I heard the first single, I was incredibly worried because that intro was dreadful, but thankfully it didn't stop me from listening to it in its entirety. The first half of this album is phenomenal, as good as Altered State which was one of my favorites of that year, with a strong addicting groove and some... Faith No More elements? Yeah, with Dan's "rapping" and the slap bass, it reminds me a lot of Faith No More and early Red Hot Chilli Peppers. However once the 2nd half hits, the quality doesn't seem to live up to the 1st, but does get it together by the end. If it wasn't for that 2nd half, this might've been album of the year, but I'll settle with this cause this is still damn awesome.
36. Fear Factory - Genexus
(8.9) Industrial Metal - Yes, another great Fear Factory record, and probably one of their best in quite a while. Mechanize was great and The Industrialist was pretty good, but this may be my favorite from modern times. It has the typical heavy rhythms and riffs throughout and I just love that, but there is some experimentation, especially with the last track which is downright beautiful, with an interesting ending message. Seek this out.
37. Alkaloid - The Malkuth Grimoire
(8.9) Extreme Progressive Metal - What happens when you have members of Dark Fortress, Necrophagist, Obscura, Blotted Science and Aborted in one band, this album, and it's as awesome and badass as it sounds. The length may turn some people off, but I still suggest a listen, even if it's just to a few choice songs.
38. Elder - Lore
(8.9) Psychedelic Sludge / Stoner Metal - My introduction into this band and I loved it. Hearing a lot of Mastodon in the vocals and it fits very well in the mix with the addition of Psychedelic elements makes this a very interesting band. Check it out.
39. Faith No More - Sol Invictus
(8.8) Alternative Metal - I'm a huge Faith No More fan so this may be incredibly biased, but I loved this album. I really don't need to say anything about the vocals (it's Mike Patton guys) but the music is really diverse and interesting. No, this isn't as good as The Real Thing or Angel Dust, but god dammit, this album is still awesome.
40. Iron Maiden - The Book Of Souls
(8.8) Heavy Metal - Bloody hell, this is one ballsy release, especially for people who have been making music for over 40 years, an 11 track 90 minute long double album from Iron Maiden, and I say their gamble payed off in the end. From the trademark galloping basslines of Steve Harris, Bruce Dickinson's soaring epic vocals, to just the onslaught of triple melodic guitars driving the song foward, this just screams Maiden all the way. But in the end, it's the longer songs that really interested me, and despite there being some parts that feel artificially lengthened, they are just as awesome. I shouldn't need to tell you that this is great, cause chances are you've already listened to this about 30 times.
41. Godspeed You! Black Emperor - 'Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress'
(8.8) Post-Rock / Drone - Another crushing apocalyptic album from Post-Rock masters Godspeed. This is also their first album since their debut to be a single LP which I feel allows them to have a better sense of focus. If you're a fan of this band, this will definitely not disappoint.
42. Nightwish - Endless Forms Most Beautiful
(8.7) Symphonic Metal - You can never please the Nightwish fanbase can you? Not even when they make an awesome album like this. I feel this is a heavier affair than recent albums, mostly in the guitars, and it definitely makes this a breath of fresh air (even though I loved Anette's stuff). Floor's voice is really great too, she get's crap for not using her full range, but she didn't really have to. All in all, kick ass album by Nighwish, so pick it up.
43. Sulphur Aeon - Gateway To The Antisphere
(8.7) Blackened Death Metal - Why can't all bands in this style be this heavy and awesome? There's definitely some Behemoth influence along with the Lovecraftian atmosphere to make a crushing sophomore album and it's glorious. Now if you'll excuse me, it's time for my daily Cthulu worship.
44. Amorphis - Under The Red Cloud
(8.7) Melodic Death/Folk Metal - Although not quite as enjoyable as Circle, this shows Amorphis tweaking their sound just a tiny bit and once again making something great. There's a lot more Folk elements, and I think a bit more use of growls, and it makes it feel fresh and great. I don't know how they do it, this is their 6th album since their comeback with Eclipse, and they still just sound awesome. If you really needed anymore reason to listen to this, let this bit it.
45. Cradle Of Filth - Hammer Of The Witches
(8.7) Gothic Black Metal - FINALLY A REASON TO BE A FAN OF THIS BAND AGAIN! To be fair, I did enjoy the album previous a bit, but it was this album that made me love the band again. The dual guitar harmonies work very well with the music, making a sort of Gothic Judas Priest vibe. And I've always liked Dani Filth's vocals and lyrics in CoF, and that doesn't disappoint here. Really excited about this band again, and their future, cause this album was great.
46. August Burns Red - Found In Far Away Places
(8.7) Technical/Melodic Metalcore - If you still think Metalcore is a dead genre, then 1. stop being a tool 2. listen to this album. ABR once again showcases why they are one of the forerunners in the Metalcore genre, with badass heavy riffs with a lot of melody sprinkled throughout. It surprised me how melodic this album was, but it fit perfectly with the music so can't complain. Everything I've come to love from this band is honed here, can't go wrong.
47. Ensiferum - One Man Army
(8.7) Extreme Folk Metal - Right off the back, this is far superior to Unsung Heroes (thankfully) and gets them right back on track as leaders in the Folk Metal genre. Awesome record.
48. Orden Ogan - Ravenhead
(8.7) Power Metal - Another band I just discovered and they're totally cool. Really riff heavy Power Metal and great songwriting really propels this album forward, really fun to listen to.
49. Enter Shikari - The Mindsweep
(8.6) Alternative Hip-Hop / Post-Hardcore - Probably one of the weirdest combinations of genres I've heard this year, and it works very well. Not a lot of metallic elements, but still a great listen if you want something different.
50. Napalm Death - Apex Predator - Easy Meat
(8.6) Deathgrind - Was there really any doubt this album would be awesome? I really don't think I need to explain why this album is great, just get it.
51. Klone - Here Comes The Sun
(8.6) Progressive Alternative Rock - A damn enjoyable album by a band I have just discovered. I must've been really missing out, their combination of Prog and Alternative is really nice (no it doesn't sound like Tool) and calming. Didn't find many metallic elements, but it's still worth the listen.
52. Thy Art Is Murder - Holy War
(8.6) Technical Deathcore - This is a damn solid slice of Deathcore from one of the better bands in the genre. I love the eerie guitar melodies in the background of the songs, they fit very well with the riffs and breakdowns present in the foreground, giving it more character than your typical Deathcore band. I also took a liking to the lyrics, it feels very poignant to our modern age, not everyone will probably be on board with it, but I found them to be good. All in all, solid release with a good message to back.
53. Kamelot - Haven
(8.6) Power Metal - God damn, Tommy is such a great vocalist and we really see the full force of his range used here, really channeling Roy Khan (almost that it was Khan at first). Really epic and soaring chorus' and kick ass verses, guitar work is solid, this album overall is just awesome, almost as good as Silverthorn.
54. Moonspell - Extinct
(8.6) Gothic Metal - A lot more accessible than I was expecting and it took a while to get used to, but I did warm up to it and it turns out to be a great record. Some great tunes that I can listen to over and over again, and just really fun overall.
55. Nile - What Should Not Be Unearthed
(8.5) Brutal Technical Death Metal - Fuck man, this album is incredibly brutal, and angry too. Happy to hear seeing that I found their last album to be crap, but this more than makes up for it, with much better and tighter production really helping the brutality showcase itself. The snarl behind the vocals sounds incredibly angry trying hard to get a point across to the listener. I just feel like I can take on the Hulk when I listen to Nile, they're just that damn heavy, and this is no different.
56. Cain's Offering - Stormcrow
(8.5) Power Metal - The first two tracks are on the weaker side, but it more than makes up for it with the rest of the tracks here. The musicianship is great, and they greatly understand how to make great and catchy melodies, which is a big plus for a Power Metal band. It'd be higher, but the vocals didn't sound like they were matching with the majesty of the music. Still great non-the-less so check it out.
57. Scale The Summit - V
(8.5) Instrumental Progressive Metal - My my, another great Scale the Summit record. A very relaxing album I find, chalk full of interesting djent like riffs and progressions. Not too much different from their other releases, but still damn great. A great album to listen to when you just want to kick back and enjoy yourself.
58. Melechesh - Enki
(8.5) Groovy Black Metal - Grooves is their game on this record and it does it amazingly, a lot of Gojira influence which is always fantastic in my book. The 2nd to last track though is a little too soft for the tone the rest of the album set though, but they make up for it with the really epic ending song.
59. Wilderun - Sleep At The Edge Of The Earth
(8.4) Extreme / Symphonic Folk Metal - This has been getting a lot of attention on this site, and I see why. Very solid Folk Metal being that has that epic feel to it, how can you go wrong? I read somewhere that this was like "Opeth playing Folk" which I can see, but I'm not going that far. It does go to show the impact this had on people though.
60. Goatsnake - Black Age Blues
(8.4) Stoner Doom Metal - Seeing as I'm a massive fan of Sunn O))), it's disappointing to me that this is my first time listening to Goatsnake, but I'm very happy with what I heard. The riffs are great throughout, with strong Doom and Stoner influences coming out everywhere. The vocals remind me a little bit of Electric Wizard without any reverb effect on the vocals. All in all, strong and fun Doom Metal album with great tunes.
61. Black Breath - Slaves Beyond Death
(8.4) Death Metal - I don't know how, but these guys have their groove game fucking down, such an enjoyable record. Not quite the intensity of their last release, but still it's heavy as fuck, and I'm sure you're neck is going to be really soar after giving it a full listen. It's heavy, it's groovy, it's Black Breath.
62. Xibalba (USA) - Tierra y libertad
(8.4) Hardcore Doom Metal - Holy shit this is heavy. Lyrics may be the generic Hardcore tough guy stuff you've heard a hundred times before, but it's backed up with really thick and heavy guitars, so, as childish as it may seem, it's definitely a convincing effort.
63. Lindemann - Skills In Pills
(8.4) Industrial Metal - This album is hilarious, not surprising since Till Lindemann is a part of it, but hearing him sing in English consistently instead of German is just makes it funnier to me. The music is pretty simple but gets the job done, with catchy grooves, electronics, and symphonics (courtesy of Peter Tägtgren) backing Till's antics. If you don't like the humor, you'll probably find this release very dull and generic, but I think it helps give this album some extra life and character it wouldn't have without it.
64. Apocalyptica - Shadowmaker
(8.3) Cello Heavy Metal - The Cello masters have returned, with a very polarizing album in the scene. Personally, I think it's incredibly fun, yeah it's very accessible, but regardless of that, it's incredibly solid. I love the vocals too, interesting there's only one this time, but I like the dudes voice a lot so no complaints here.
65. Momentum - The Freak is Alive
(8.3) Progressive Death Metal - A solid album in the Progressive Death Metal department, but not the masterpiece a lot of people say it is. It's great for what it is, and definitely a step above other acts, but it didn't have a huge impact on me. Pick this up regardless, it's a great listen.
66. God Is An Astronaut - Helios/Erebus
(8.3) Post-Rock - On this release, God is an Astronaut does what they do best, create expansive and layered soundscapes. If you listened to any of release from this group, this albums content should not surprise you much, however it is still a very consistent and solid album, so definitely give it a listen.
67. Iwrestledabearonce - Hail Mary
(8.3) Mathcore - I'm honestly shocked at how much I liked this album, I've hated everything they've done in the past. It wasn't till I started hearing some praise that got me curious, and god damn is it good. Heavier than their past work and doesn't sound like an uncoordinated mess of bullshit, and this new singer has a pretty viscous voice. So if you're iffy about it, trust me, it's actually good.
68. Ereb Altor - Nattramn
(8.3) Pagan Black / Doom Metal - How am I just discovering all these bands that have apparently been around for quite a long time? Definitely a very strong addition to Doom Metal, with bits and pieces of Black Metal popping out of some parts. Overall it's a very solid album, but was hoping for a bit more melancholy, like how I like most of my Doom (see new Shape of Despair).
69. Armageddon - Captivity & Devourment
(8.3) Melodic Death Metal - Apparently this is their first album in thirteen years and it's pretty damn good. Really good heavy riffing and some kick ass death metal vocals. I didn't rate it any higher because it did slow down a bit in some parts and the clean vocals, although sparse, didn't really fit.
70. The Black Dahlia Murder - Abysmal
(8.2) Melodic Death Metal / Metalcore - This album is just unrelenting. Riffs piled on with more riffs just keep this albums flow fast and breakneck. It didn't quite hit me as much as Everblack did, that album was fantastic, but this is definitely a worthy follow up and overall a solid TBDM album.
71. The Agonist - Eye Of Providence
(8.2) Melodic Death Metal / Metalcore - New singer, no problem. Vicky is an excellent replacement now that Alissa is fronting Arch Enemy and really packs a punch. Took me awhile to adjust to her clean voice but I ended up liking it. Am I the only one who thinks Vicky is channeling a lot of Carcass in her harsh voice?
72. Disturbed - Immortalized
(8.2) Heavy Metal - Disturbed's return has made a lot of metalheads excited, but also a lot uncaring. I've always thought they were consistent at least, and this is no different. I like the Judas Priest esque songwriting in some of these songs and I love the cover of Sound of Silence. The rest of the songs are mostly typical Disturbed, so if you'renot on board with this band at this point, give it a skip. Everyone else, it's a solid record so check it out.
73. Breaking Benjamin - Dark Before Dawn
(8.2) Alternative Metal - Is it weird that I really like this album, but think the new Three Days of Grace one is shit? I don't know, but I do know that I enjoyed this release quite a bit. It's been 6 years and a court case since their last album, I almost didn't think this would ever come into existence, but here it is. It's very standard BB, but it still sounds solid and catchy. If you're already a fan, you'll be quite satisfied.
74. Tribulation - The Children Of The Night
(8.1) Black Metal - Never heard this bands music before, but apparently this is much different than the previous albums with a more Black Metal approach. If so, then I hope they keep doing this cause they do it pretty damn well. Nothing mind blowing or anything, just very solid Black Metal here.
75. Barren Earth - On Lonely Towers
(8.1) Progressive Melodic Death Metal - NOOOO MIKKO ISN'T IN THE BAND ANYMORE... Okay now that I got that out of the way I will answer two questions surrounding this album. 1. Is it as good as Curse of the Red River? Not even close, sorry. 2. Is this still a good record? Absolutely. As much as it sucks that Mikko left the band, the new singer, Jón Aldará, is quite good (don't love his cleans though) and I definitely really like the doomy parts of the record. If they build off this, they could really make something magnificent.
76. Earl Sweatshirt - I Don't Like Shit, I Don't Go Outside
(8.1) Alternative Hip-Hop - Damn, this album is really dark and murky for a Hip-Hop record. This album is full of nihilistic and depressing lyrics spit out by Earl in a very hollow and defeated voice with murky beats in the background. I really like it, but it's way too short, barely 30 minutes.
77. Sylosis - Dormant Heart
(8.0) Melodic Death Metal / Thrash Metal - Another solid record by this band, however it does lack some of the intensity of the previous records. If you're not already a fan, this probably won't change your mind, however I still think it's really good.
78. Helloween - My God-Given Right
(8.0) Power Metal - It's crazy that these guys are still going, and rather strongly I may add. This is quite a solid album for Helloween, but also quite standard. Nothing really jumped out to me as a standout track, but at the same time, nothing jumped out as atrocious. All in all a solid record, but don't expect anything different.
79. Byzantine - To Release Is To Resolve
(8.0) Groove Metal - It's heavy, it's groovy, it's Byzantine. A really fun and enjoyable record, however it gets a little samey as it continues and the softer parts could've been better executed.
80. Symphony X - Underworld
(7.9) Progressive Metal - Ughhh, this score is way too low for a Symphony X record, especially after the amazing Paradise Lost and Iconoclast. This isn't bad, in fact it's quite solid, but it didn't hit my in any significant way like the rest of their discography has. The heavy guitar driven tracks are great, but whenever a ballady one comes in, it feels underwhelming. This is still really good on it's own, but for Symphony X, they can do much much better.
81. Halestorm - Into The Wild Life
(7.9) Hard Rock - I've always found pleasure in Halestorm's music, they seem to be more enjoyable than the rest of the cookie-cutter "Hard Rock" bands around today, and a lot of it is do to Lzzy Hale's intense raspy voice that is just pure Rock-n-Roll. The music too is quite good as well, with good guitar work and solos with a simple drum beat to keep them going at a good pace. This would get a higher rating, except there were a little too many ballads for me personally, wanted more of a punch.
82. Carach Angren - This Is No Fairytale
(7.8) Symphonic Black Metal - A little disappointing but still quite a good offering from this band. Music and vocals are great, however the storytelling in the lyrics lacks subtlety. If that doesn't bother you too much, definitely give this a listen.
83. Blind Guardian - Beyond The Red Mirror
(7.7) Symphonic Power Metal - I really wanted to like this more, but this just didn't have quite the impact their previous release had. It's still a solid album and deserves a listen, but if you're expecting it to be as good as At the Edge of Time, you'll be disappointed.
84. Skepticism - Ordeal
(7.7) Funeral Doom Metal - After hearing amazing albums by Ahab and Shape of Despair this year, this album had me excited, but didn't quite deliver fully. Although an interesting idea, recording the album live and mixing/mastering it in the studio, the growls feel very flat and kind of boring. What saves it are good Funeral Doom riffing and the ethereal organ in the background, those give this a better character than it would have without it. Lead and Aether was the only other Skepticism album I listened to and thought it was brilliant, but this isn't even close to touching that amazing album. Still quite good, but not great.
85. Slayer - Repentless
(7.7) Thrash Metal - Slayer may have released the greatest Thrash Metal album ever (Reign in Blood), but that band is gone. I consider this better than whatever the fuck was Christ Illusion, but not quite as good as World Painted Blood. There are plenty of great songs, but for every one of those, there's a song that's just completely forgettable. I may be being kind to this album as a Slayer fan and that there are more songs I liked than didn't, but overall, it's nothing great.
86. An Autumn For Crippled Children - The Long Goodbye
(7.6) Blackgaze - I actually quite enjoy this album, however it lacks the beauty and tranquility on Try Not to Destroy Everything You Love which I was really looking forward to hearing, but instead had a more direct Black Metal sound, which would be fine, but I don't think it's heavy enough. Overall though it's a good disk that deserves a listen, maybe it'll grow on me.
87. Abiotic - Casuistry
(7.6) Technical Deathcore - Very typical album in the Tech Death(core) genre, but still rather enjoyable. Everyone is very tight and proficient, but doesn't really offer anything else. I would suggest this only for fans of the style and people looking to get into it.
88. Kataklysm - Of Ghosts And Gods
(7.5) Melodic Death Metal - This album starts weakly, with the first couple tracks being a bit boring. As it progressedoes though, I saw myself liking the later songs a lot more and banging my head along to it. Overall though, it's just another Kataklysm album, nothing special about this release really, just more good Melo-Death.
89. Shining - IX - Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends
(7.5) Progressive Black Metal - As much as I wish they'd go back to their Depressive Black Metal sound, this is a pretty good release. Some parts feel out of place, and the production is a little too clear, but there's still enjoyment to be had.
90. Death Cab for Cutie - Kintsugi
(7.4) Indie Rock - Very standard album from this group but still rather good. Nice album to listen to if you just want to relax. Other than that, aside from a difference in production, not much different. If you're not already a fan, this won't be for you.
91. Gnaw Their Tongues - Abyss Of Longing Throats
(7.3) Experimental Black Metal - I can't help but feel a bit disappointed with this album, sure it's good, but compared to other stuff they've done, not really as much. The vocals are fantastic, really creepy stuff, but the actual music doesn't match up. It feels iffy in the mix and doesn't feel as powerful as it could be. The Drone and Black Metal aren't blended as well as previous efforts I feel. Still, this should be listened to for the vocals, that stuff is scary.
92. Motörhead - Bad Magic
(7.2) Heavy Metal - As much as I found this an enjoyable and fun release, it suffers from one glaring problem, Lemmy's vocals. I've always loved his vocals, and they were even pretty good on Aftershock, but here they just seem deflated and powerless, lacking the energy of other releases. This is probably due to age and his health, but it was very striking whenever I listen through it. The backing band saves this album though, with Motörhead being classic Motörhead. If you can look past the vocals, I say it's worth a listen.
93. Scarab - Serpents Of The Nile
(7.1) Brutal Death Metal - Really liked the first album from these guys, but don't particularly love this one. The vocals are sweet and some riffs are pretty good, but it doesn't justify the lengths of these songs to be as long as they are, too much filler and the album drags because of it (could cut down on the chugging). I was expecting a lot more from these guys.
94. Sunn O))) - Kannon
(7.0) Drone Metal - Seeing that this is the first solo Sunn O))) album in 6 years, I was expecting a lot more. Granted, I don't find anything particularly shitty about this, the music is still really good, but it wasn't even close to reaching my expectations. M&D was fantastic and showed a lot of experimentation, the collabs with Ulver and Scott Walker were very interesting as well, this just feelslike more of the same. Again, this album is still good, but it's not the amazing return I was hoping for.
95. Muse - Drones
(7.0) Hard / Progressive Rock - I enjoy Muse, but I have some issues with this album. It doesn't really know what it wants to be, does it want to be a balls-to-the-wall Hard Rock album, or a massive Progressive Rock album? It does both, but they don't go together that well and some parts just feel disjointed. There is still enjoyment to be had from this album, and definitely better than their previous record, but it's still weak compared to what they've been able to do.
96. Coal Chamber - Rivals
(6.9) Nu Metal - Here's a shocker, this album isn't complete crap... it's not that great either but it's better than any other release Coal Chamber has made imo. Even as someone who likes some Nu Metal, Coal Chamber just seemed to be the most generic band in the genre. The music is what you'd expect there are some pretty rocking tracks and I do hear some effort put into it. Still not a fan, but I can at least appreciate this album for what it is.
97. Drake - If You're Reading This It's Too Late
(6.8) Hip-Hop - Well... it doesn't suck, I didn't feel like killing myself after listening, but it's not that good either. There's some decent verses Drake spits over this record, with decent beats, but the things that still annoy me about Drake are still here. There are some nice stuff to hear, but still, only listen if you for some reason like Drake.
98. Torche - Restarter
(6.7) Sludge Pop Metal - I find this album very underwhelming. It doesn't have the same charm and fun factor that previous releases had and is a little dull. There's not enough of the pop elements that Harmonicraft had and I didn't really love it. Still an enjoyable release but I wouldn't recommend it personally.
99. Bullet For My Valentine - Venom
(6.6) Melodic Metalcore - Thank fucking Cthulu this album isn't as shitty as Temper Temper, which just goes to show you the low expectations I had for this. This is more reminiscent of Fever, which wasn't terrible but very average, but with better musicality overall. What really hinders this album for me are the clean vocals and lyrics, I like the screams quite a bit, but it's also so I don't have to focus on the shitty lyrics ripped from Temper Temper. Overall, a barely passable album, but not really a comeback I wanted to hear.
100. Veil Of Maya - Matriarch
(6.4) Progressive Deathcore - Unfortunately, my fears were realized, this album is pretty average. There are spurts of good ideas here and there, but overall the album feels disjointed and unfocused. I also don't feel like the cleans belong here, I love Periphery but I don't need a second one. Maybe next release will be better.
101. Forgotten Tomb - Hurt Yourself And The Ones You Love
(6.3) Blackened Doom Metal - God dammit, I really wanted to like this album. Ignoring the awful artwork and meh album title, I was looking forward to this release. It starts off strong with the first track, but the rest sounds generic and cheesy (with some exceptions). Also, I felt there was a lot of filler to make songs artificially longer and have more lyrics than necessary. Really disappointed, I was expecting a lot more from this band.
102. Mechina - Acheron
(6.1) Industrial / Symphonic Death Metal - Incredibly disappointing album. I really don't like the one album a year thing they've been doing and it's definitely hindered their songwriting a lot. Please take more time between albums and try to develop your ideas, I really don't want another Pathology.
103. Born Of Osiris - Soul Sphere
(6.0) Progressive Deathcore - I want to say I'm disappointed, but their last album was so mediocre that it doesn't surprise me that this just sounds worse. The first single from this album was fucking terrible, maybe the worst song BoO has written, but thankfully the rest isn't as terrible, just kind of dull. There really isn't a stand out track to me, Resilience is pretty good, but the rest is just eh or bad. It seems that Jason Richardson really did make this band great, a shame that they can't continue that level of quality.
104. Bring Me The Horizon - That's The Spirit
(5.5) Post-Hardcore/Electro Pop - What the fuck happened? Sempiternal was such an interesting and different album from everything else in the sub-genre and was great because of that, but then this happened. The first three tracks started strongly, but the quality takes a dive to just absolute shit. The lyrics are boring and too much irritating poppy electronica with very little of the good Post-Hardcore riffs present on Sempiternal. This is incredibly sad and disappointing to see such a lack of quality following a great album, I can only hope they can get their shit together and soon.
105. All That Remains - The Order Of Things
(5.1) Melodic Metalcore - I don't know why I listened to this album, I haven't liked these guys since The Fall of Ideals and this doesn't help. It's better than A War You Cannot Win, but that's like saying St. Anger is better than Lulu. C'mon ATR, get your shit together.
106. Three Days Grace - Human
(4.7) Alternative Rock - Wow... it's surprising how dull and annoying this album is (yes I actually like this band). The new singer is okay, however the lyrics are sooooo repetitive to the point where it loses it's potency and just sounds lazy. Some riffs also sound recycled from previous songs in their catalog (much better songs I may add). This overall just seems like a lazy and half assed album.
107. Oceano - Ascendants
(4.6) Brutal Deathcore - This album is so boring and uninspired, it gave me a headache. This is album is the perfect example of generic Deathcore, overly long and simplistic breakdowns with no substance and extremely dull and monotonous harsh vocals really make this a snooze fest. What's even more frustrating is that when I feel that they have a good set up for something, they do a generic breakdown instead. At least it's short though, just under 30 minutes so you won't suffer too much.
108. Six Feet Under - Crypt Of The Devil
(4.2) Death Metal - This is garbage, no way to sugar coat it, just complete trash. Chris Barnes is still a terrible vocalist and the rest of the members are still incredibly generic, like they've always been. Why the fuck did I subject myself to this? It's only worse than Oceano because the run time is longer... so yeah, terrible album, but we all knew that.
109. Liturgy (US-NY) - The Ark Work
(2.3) Experimental Black Metal - You know what... I really have to respect this album. No really, no sarcasm at all, I have respect for this album, it's different and experimental and unlike anything I've heard before. The only issue is that the music is pure dog shit, but you know what who cares right; this band is doing their own thing and there's respect there. Just... for next time, don't make music that makes me want to chop off both my ears with a hedge trimmer.

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


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Comments: 4   Visited by: 218 users
10.03.2015 - 10:56
I really like your list. I hope some day I have the time to explain all my opinion like you on each album good job
Go check Mine :
12.03.2015 - 22:11
Written by Pelagial on 10.03.2015 at 10:56

I really like your list. I hope some day I have the time to explain all my opinion like you on each album good job

Thank you kindly good sir. I checked out your list and I liked it, nice choices. Keep up the good work.
22.05.2015 - 23:44
Awesome and truthful list.
Do consider adding Cain's Offering Stormcrow somewhere - it's an album deserves a place in here!
23.05.2015 - 06:13
Written by Kais on 22.05.2015 at 23:44

Awesome and truthful list.
Do consider adding Cain's Offering Stormcrow somewhere - it's an album deserves a place in here!

That's definitely on my list to check out, I've heard great things about it. Thanks for checking it out.

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