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  #31  
Old 12-25-2013, 05:20 AM
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40.) Deafheaven - Sunbather

One of the most talked about releases of year, Deafheaven's Sunbather, has gained them quite a following and rightly so. Mixing the atmospheres and melodies of shoegaze with the sonic dissonance of black metal is no easy task, but Deafheaven pulls it off with flying colors. Whether it's the intensity of "Dream House" or the sheer beauty of the mid-section of "The Pecan Tree," Sunbather is chock full of seemingly antithetical ideas coinciding harmoniously.

Dream House
Vertigo



39.) Hail of Bullets - III: The Rommel Chronicles

I'm still of the opinion that anything Martin van Drunen touches is gold and this does nothing to change that. This is just some well executed death metal. Akin to Bolt Thrower in the pummeling guitar sound that conjures up images of wars long past. Nothing flashy or too technical (it's no slouch either!), Hail of Bullets just let the riffs speak for themselves.

DG-7
Dak



38.) Black Sabbath - 13

As good of a return as one could hope for from the progenitors of heavy metal. I don't think I need to say any more since everything that can be said about this already has.

God Is Dead?
Age of Reason



37.) Iron Lung - White Glove Test

Hard hitting powerviolence that trades off between fast, aggressive passages and slower, crushing parts. The first part of the album is abundant with tracks that focus more on the slower aspect of Iron Lung's music while the second half is full of full speed grinders. There was a pure noise companion album made that apparently enhances the listening experience when merged together with the original album. I haven't checked that out yet though.

Heirs to the Prize
Brutal Supremecy II



36.) Aosoth - IV: Arrow in Heart

Black metal in the vein of Antaeus or Mgla. This album puts up a wall of aggression and desolation that is all but palpable. The intro/title song, "An Arrow in Heart" perfectly sets up the tone of this album by encompassing all the varieties of black metal that Aosoth transition between; mid-tempo head-bobbing passages, dark atmospheric passages and crushing aural assaults. Would've been much higher if I had gotten a chance to listen to it more. Also, definitely on the short list for "Album Art of the Year."

An Arrow in Heart (Couldn't find the full version on Youtube)
Temple of Knowledge
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Last edited by kalfitegrdan; 12-28-2013 at 04:55 AM.
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  #32  
Old 12-28-2013, 05:07 AM
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35.) Sorcery - Arrival at Six


Originally my front runner for album of the year, it has kind of fallen by the wayside as of late. Not to say it's not a good album, because it is chock full of the HM-2 goodness that Swedish death metal is known for. Not really much else to say, just a rocking death metal album.

Master of the Chains
Arrival at Six



34.) Vattnet Viskar - Sky Swallower

An American atmospheric black metal band in the vein of Agalloch with a pinch more sludge influence a la Altar of Plagues. The album is wont to switch between bestial growls and blast beats to pretty clean guitar riffs at the drop of a dime.

New Alchemy
Mythos



33.) Lord Dying - Summon the Faithless

Lord Dying aren't treading any new ground with their brand of thrashy stoner/sludge, but they still deliver a very entertaining record. I have to agree with what Slap said in his review about this sounding a lot like early High on Fire and that not being a bad thing. This record is just catchy sludge riff after catchy sludge riff.

In a Frightful State of Gnawed Dismemberment
Perverse Osmosis



32.) Kanye West - Yeezus

I've never really liked anything Kanye West has done before this (except some parts of Watch the Throne and his verses on the Katy Perry song), but for some reason this album really clicked with me and was on constant rotation in my car most of the summer. The beats are fucking enormous and I'm actually impressed with some of the wit in Kanye's lyrics. With the exception of "Hold My Liquor," I like at least a majority of each song on here. I'm not a fan of any of the parts with auto-tune singing which is disappointing that it's in here at all because the first half of "New Slaves" is probably my favorite song on the record until it devolves into singing. Same problem with "Blood on the Leaves" which has my favorite beat on the record, but doesn't come in until over a minute into the song and is preceded by some lame singing.

Black Skinhead
New Slaves



31.) Blockheads - This World is Dead

A fast as fuck grindcore album from French grinders, Blockheads. Blockheads have a pretty damn good ear for songwriting though and have more structure to their songs than your average grind band while never relenting on the brutality. The only time Blockheads slow it down is the last track, "Trail of the Dead," a seven minute sludge song which is definitely one of the highlights of the album. Also, the track "Be a Thorn to Power" totally has the same intro as an Oceano song which is hilarious, intentional or not.

This World is Dead
Trail of the Dead
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  #33  
Old 12-31-2013, 04:57 AM
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30.) The Black Dahlia Murder - Everblack

A step up from their last record, that was pretty damn good, but didn't really pack the punch that this one does and Deflorate did. The first song "In Hell Is Where She Waits For Me" is really lackluster, but after that every track is blistering, death metal goodness. "Raped in Hatred by Vines of Thorn" is the catchiest song they've ever written aside from maybe "What a Horrible Night to Have a Curse."

Raped in Hatred by Vines of Thorn
Their Beloved Absentee



29.) Boris - Präparat

Honestly I'm also pretty new to Boris as well with Akuma No Uta being the only album I'd heard by them previously. The album starts off with a couple post-rock sounding tracks until track 5, "Method of Error" where it changes directions to a more sludge/drone route for the next couple tracks and then finish the record with a blending of the two styles. The sludge and drone material definitely shine through the most while the post-rock is just a nice setup for when your ears get kicked in the dick by heavy.

Method of Error
Bataille Sucre



28.) Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels

This is the best hip-hop album to be released this year and "DDFH" is the best hip-hop song. It's a collaboration between rappers El-P (whose album, Fantastic Damage is great) and Killer Mike (who I've never listened to before). The beats are massive, the hooks are catchy and the lyrics are entertaining. Killer Mike and El-P compliment each other perfectly.

Run the Jewels
DDFH



27.) Iron Reagan - Worse Than Dead

Better than Municipal Waste's last two or three records. Iron Reagan sounds exactly like Municipal Waste (they share a guitarist and vocalist) except with more of a hardcore sound to the crossover. This is just really catchy thrash and chances are if you dig Municipal Waste, you'll also dig this. "I Predict the Death of Harold Camping" is the best song title of 2013, made even better by the fact that Harold Camping died this year.

Cycle of Violence
Eyes Piss Tears



26.) Primitive Man - Scorn

Primitive Man play a style of blackened sludge not unlike Withered (who Ethan, the vocalist/guitarist, recently joined), but far better. The two ambient/random noise tracks go on a little too long, but otherwise all the actual songs are great. The atmosphere of Scorn is one of utter desolation and contempt for the existence of mankind.

Antietam
Astral Sleep
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  #34  
Old 12-31-2013, 05:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kalfitegrdan View Post
26.) Primitive Man - Scorn

Primitive Man play a style of blackened sludge not unlike Withered (who Ethan, the vocalist/guitarist, recently joined), but far better. The two ambient/random noise tracks go on a little too long, but otherwise all the actual songs are great. The atmosphere of Scorn is one of utter desolation and contempt for the existence of mankind.

Antietam
Astral Sleep
The first song is a little pretentious (but "atmospheric" stuff or whatever it is is supposed to be, I guess), but this is a unique album, and quite good in parts. I agee with your assessment. The "contempt" for mankind is completely palpable in the music, and readable in the lyrics. I share many of the same views as the lyrics.

Excellent and diverse list so far.
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  #35  
Old 12-31-2013, 05:42 AM
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Originally Posted by hellawaits77ny View Post
The first song is a little pretentious (but "atmospheric" stuff or whatever it is is supposed to be, I guess), but this is a unique album, and quite good in parts. I agee with your assessment. The "contempt" for mankind is completely palpable in the music, and readable in the lyrics. I share many of the same views as the lyrics.

Excellent and diverse list so far.
Yeah, I kinda agree about the pretentiousness in stuff like this, but whatever, if it sounds good then they can be as pretentious about it as they like.

Thanks for checking it out, man.
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  #36  
Old 12-31-2013, 05:49 AM
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if it sounds good then they can be as pretentious about it as they like.

.
Absolutely!
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  #37  
Old 12-31-2013, 09:52 AM
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Thanks for posting that Aosoth record. That's one I missed that I shouldn't have.
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  #38  
Old 01-03-2014, 08:49 AM
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25.) Cloud Rat - Moksha

A sweet combination of grindcore and hardcore with the odd addition of some screamo influence. The emotionally charged, screamo influenced vocal delivery is an interesting thing that adds a breath of fresh air to the grind experience. Despite the screamo adding an emotional side, the record is still absolutely furious and unrelenting for most of the duration. There's also a grind cover of Neil Young's "The Needle and the Damage Done."

Inkblot
Inimitable Sea




24.) The Ocean - Pelagial

The clean singing was a major turn-off at first, but with repeated listens I got used to it and even now enjoy it to an extent. It's beautiful, it's heavy, sometimes it's both simultaneously. The album is a concept album based on the various depth zones of the ocean, so naturally starts with some post-rock influenced songs at the surface, but as the album ends with "Benthic: The Origin of Our Wishes," the music comes to a dirge-like, near funeral doom heaviness to represent the ever encompassing, always suffocating depth at the bottom of the ocean. Through all these changing genres, The Ocean stay firmly rooted in their progressive sludge metal roots.

Bathyalpelagic I: Impasses
Benthic: The Origin of Our Wishes



23.) Autopsy - The Headless Ritual

I really liked their last album, but this one blows it away. It's a complete throwback to their "Severed Survival" and "Mental Funeral" days. An updated production that gives it a bit less of a grimy feeling, but I can't really complain. "Slaughter at Beast House" is just pure death/doom goodness and better than anything on Macabre Eternal.

Slaughter at Beast House
Arch Cadaver



22.) Toxic Holocaust - Chemistry of Consciousness

Toxic Holocaust have abandoned the heavy crust punk influence and have gone back to the straight up black/thrash sound that they employed on their masterpiece, An Overdose of Death... and I'm all the more happy for it. This really is basically An Overdose of Death... Part 2 and if you're okay with that, then you should love this album too. Also, the video for Acid Fuzz is one of the best music videos ever. Watch it.

Rat Eater
Deny the Truth



21.) Wolf Down - Stray From the Path

Heavy as hell female-fronted hardcore from Germany. A nice fusion of old school sounding hardcore riffs with the newer trend of hard-hitting breakdowns. I disagree with pretty much all their lyrical themes (they're straight edge vegans and are into the whole ACAB thing), but the music more than makes up for that. Wolf Down never strays from the path of pure pissed off hardcore and make a great record because of that.

Loving Embrace
Tables Will Turn
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  #39  
Old 01-03-2014, 08:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illuminatus917 View Post
Thanks for posting that Aosoth record. That's one I missed that I shouldn't have.
Yeah, that record is great. It would've been a lot higher if I would have gotten to it before December, but I didn't have a chance to really analyze it.
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  #40  
Old 01-03-2014, 12:36 PM
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I influenced your list because of 21!
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