Saturday, April 30, 2011

Year in Metal: 2009

Link to larger post.

My Top 10 as shown in that post:
10. Thanatos: Justified Genocide
9. Heaven & Hell: The Devil You Know
8. Amorphis: Skyforger
7. Dawn of Azazel: Relentless
6. Seance: Awakening of the Gods
5. Cauldron: Chained to the Nite
4. Goatwhore: Carving Out the Eyes of God
3. God Dethroned: Passiondale
2. Razor of Occam: Homage to Martyrs
1. Destroyer 666: Defiance

Again, the Top 10 has not changed, but I want to look at some different albums from 2009.

I originally avoided Baroness. I had heard that Baroness was basically Mastodon, and I have not been nearly as impressed with Mastodon's material since Blood Mountain. However I heard some decent songs off the Baroness album, coupled with the fact that it was Decibel's Album of the Year, and eventually decided it was time to pick it up. I am glad that I did. This is a very good album. Though I am not the biggest fan of the recent surge in sludge/doom metal acts, much preferring the original sludge artists such as Eyehategod and Acid Bath, I do admit the songs on this thing are damn catchy. I am not yet sure whether I will continue to check out Baroness, but they got my attention.

Cobalt was the subject of an awful lot of hype leading up to this album. The American black metal band had switched up their sound a little bit for this release, going with a more all-encompassing sound on this release. This is not a simple black metal album. It has elements of punk, rock, and sludge metal. Then there is the fact that vocalist/guitarist Phil McSorley was stationed in Iraq as a U.S. Army scout which adds an intriguing element to the band's music. This is an incredible album that is not like any other black metal album from the U.S. or anywhere else for that matter.

Well, since I covered Metallica's sort-of-return-to-form for 2008, I figured I should cover Megadeth's here. Of the two, Megadeth's was far closer to their early glory days. This actually sounds like thrash metal and all of the characteristics that made Megadeth stand out are present. Fast riffs, check. Amazing guitar solos, check. Snarling vocals, check. Angry, political lyrics, check. Love him or hate him, you have to admit that Dave Mustaine is one hell of a guitarist and that shows here. Ultimately, I prefer this album to Metallica's most recent.

Napalm Death keeps doing what Napalm Death does. And that is put out album after album of furious death/grind every 18 months or so. I have always been a fan of vocalist Barney Greenway, and although I prefer his work with Benediction, his ferocious roar sounds great with the crushing and grinding riffs of Napalm Death. I have in the last few months become a much bigger fan of this band and admit that this is one of their best albums I have heard.

Suffocation had a hand in the creation of several subgenres of death metal from slam to brutal death to deathcore. Their own music exists on a bit more of the brutal death side of things although there have been many bands that are clearly more brutal now. However, Suffocation still puts out great albums and though brutal still remain listenable. Suffocation has never had to change their musical formula and still remain as powerful now as they did on their debut.


  1. Napalm Death is one of those bands whose more recent material I find more appealing than their old stuff, so I liked that album quite a bit.

  2. I mentioned before, Gin is one of the album's I'd consider for the desert island. Suffocation and Baroness are amazing too. I haven't listened to much Napalm Death, though I have heard a fair amount.