I listened to a shitload of demos this year. In hindsight, I don't know why I really waste my time on demos. They're usually shit-quality, even if the songs are good. And if the demo is really that good, I'll probably be hearing of the band in the future anyway. Most of these bands are pretty great at what they do, but what they do isn't terribly original, for the most part. I should probably work on filling gaps in my collection with essential artists I've never heard before giving every single "band" of 23-year-old losers from Miami working at Circuit City a chance. That being said, I did enjoy these demos to a fair extent. Here's what I got:
Iron Cages (2012 demo) -- RIYL from ashes rise
Sküll (demo) -- blackened crusty death
Mean Man's Dream (s/t) -- chaotic, sludgy hardcore
Aversion (fracture/divider) -- RIYL shai hulud
Skinfather (atheos) -- Entombed gone straight-edge, or something
WTCHDR (s/t) -- chaotic, sludgy, blackened, doomy hardcore, a bit rough around the edges
East Beast (s/t) -- RIYL naysayer
As We Were (a reason) -- melodic hardcore from Burlington (yep, seen 'em twice)
Old Lines (winter demo) -- RIYL ruiner, pulling teeth
VALVE (s/t) -- French, doom, clean vocals; beautiful
Lord Dying (demo) -- RIYL black cobra, bison b.c.
Self-Corruption (history of clowns) -- best grind demo this year, bar fucking none
Sorcerer's Pledge (demo) -- The avant-garde singer of Twitching Tongues takes on traditional doom, yes
I'm pretty sure all of these bands have bandcamps, and the demos are mostly free, from what I recall.