Writer of the Apotheosis metal newsletter and occasionally a few other things. He/Him
Obviously need to shout out Melted Bodies – Enjoy Yourself but given that I wrote a review of that I doubt that’s unexpected.
As for albums that could use a little more love, here’s some that didn’t make the splash I thought they should’ve
Arkheron Thodol – Rituals of the Sovereign Heart (Naturmacht Productions)
Were it not for Liturgy putting out an album that most people are going to technically classify as black metal, this would’ve been the best black metal album of the year.
neander – Eremit (Through Love Records)
An absolute mammoth of a doom metal record that satisfies all the riff cravings you have and more. The record takes a lot of bold risks that almost always seem to pay off.
exhalants – Atonement (Hex Records)
Gut churning sludge metal that hates capitalism as god intended. Furious and just straight up terrifying.
doves – ULTRACLUB4K (Useless Tapes)
A kickass DJ record (not really sure if this is an album or not but it’s good) that combines hardstyle and emo hip-hop to make something that has no right working but it just grabs the knobs for all the chemicals in your brain and cranks that shit all the way to 11.
FR/BLCK/PR – I Don’t Write Rhymes, I Write Code (Temporary Whatever)
The most innovative hip-hop record of the year. More spoken word and jazz than any traditional hip-hop project, this record really captured me in a way I didn’t expect. A must listen project, especially in light of the social rights protests from earlier this year.
Vous Autres – Sel De Pierre (Season Of Mist Underground Activists)
Technically this band is considered black metal, but regardless of what it’s supposed to be this album sounds straight up evil. I’ve rarely heard a black metal band get such an incredible depth and heft out of their guitars. It’s almost like someone told a metalcore band to play post-black and it just straight up rules.
Kaatayra – Toda Historia pela Frente (Mospharic)
Amazing combination of black metal and brazilian folk. Great guitar work too.
Amazing combination of black metal, brazilian folk and electronics. Also excellent guitar work throughout.
Having not heard of depressive-suicidal black metal before this year, and having listened to a lot of it this year, no one I’ve heard has performed anything nearly as affecting as this. Great stuff, and it’s only one guy. No idea how he pulls this off.
Weird, glitchy and noisy post punk stuff that will make you laugh and wince across a span of six seconds.
In a year that felt like the world was ending, only the opening drone of this record truly captured the feeling of overwhelming dread that each new day brought with it.
Probably too popular to sit alongside this crew, but easily the best power metal from this year. If you need something to just let loose (and want a pretty easy to follow story) you’ll find it in this record.