If you haven't gotten your fill of 2016 lists, then read on. Below are assembled lists of varying lengths and sizes which were provided to us by friends and listeners.
First up we have our friend and contributor "Spotify" Mark. Not only did he give us his top 25 albums of 2016, but he also told us what he liked about them.
1. Thrawsunblat – Metachthonia
It probably seems like I'm sucking up to a friend of the show as well as one of the hosts, but I'm not. This album is a masterpiece and I don't care who knows that I feel that way. The album I listened to more than any other by far. Beautiful in every way.
2. Khemmis – Hunted
This is the most "listed" album of the year but rightly so. Sometimes music can be straightforward and great at the same time and that is exactly what this album is.
3. Allfather - Bless the Earth with Fire
An album I never stopped listening to all year. Hardcore, sludge, stoner all mixed up into a tight, hard hitting package.
4. Anaal Nathrakh - The Whole of the Law
Angry Metal Guy review on why he feels allegiance to Anaal Nathrakh: "perhaps it’s because, whenever you hear people talk ill about any type of metal (kill your mother, rape your dog, etc.), chances are the music that Anaal Nathrakh spawns are the exact sounds these people actively imagine in their heads." Heavy Metal Overload: "The most enjoyable migraine you’ll ever get." Yeah, so what those guys said are why I like this.
5. Cobalt - Slow Forever
Another album I never put down. A killer combination of so many elements. Also had the privilege of seeing them live.
6. Nails - You Will Never Be One of Us
A brutal half hour. I listened to this and Anaal Nathrakh back to back, which was really loud and fun.
7. Obscura – Akroasis
A brilliant slice of tech death. An album I haven't seen on a ton of lists and I'm not sure why because it rules.
8. Vektor - Terminal Redux
A dizzingly intense listen, but so much fun.
9. Amon Amarth – Jomsviking
Killer album with an engaging story. Also had one of my favorite songs of the year: A Dream That Cannot Be feat. Doro.
10. Oathbreaker – Rheia
I've only listened to this album twice, but it was recommended to me at just the right time - rough day, had the free time to sit in the dark and listen to it with headphones - and it had an effect on me I can't forget.
11. Interment - Scent of the Buried
Unapologetic Swedish death metal. Never lets up nor strays from its theme (hint: it's death). Wicked buzzsaw guitar tone.
12. Cult of Luna & Julie Christmas – Mariner
A combination that is greater than the sum of its parts.
13. Sumerlands – Sumerlands
I didn't think I listened to this album enough to deserve to be able to put it on the list. But then I listened to it twice a day for two days and realized it is not to be left off this list.
14. The Lion's Daughter - Existence is Horror
Come for the throat-shredding vocals, stay for the sludgy, blacked-out, sometimes-synthy beatdown.
15. Oozing Wound - Whatever Forever
Irreverent, cynical thrashy noise rock with one of my favorite album covers of the year. Sometimes the Metal Archives "lyrical themes" say it all: War, Drugs, Death.
16. Castle - Welcome to the Graveyard
Something about their particular brand of doomy blasphemy really grabbed me. Fun listen.
17. Anciients - Voice of the Void
Cool burst of proggy, riff-based metal. While you wait for the next Mastodon album.
18. Inquisition - Bloodshed Across the Empyrean Altar Beyond the Celestial Zenith
Do you like riffs? Like, really like them? Because I do and that's why this album is on this list.
19. Revocation - Great is our Sin
Super-solid effort from a tight-as-hell band.
20. Mantar - Ode to the Flame
Excellent follow up to 2014's Death By Burning. Catchy, groove fest that's heavy in all the right places.
21. Chthe'ilist - Le Dernier Crepuscule
Two words this album conjures for me: grimy and dirty. Those are good things.
22. Insomnium - Winter's Gate
I just like saying the word melodeath. This album kicks ass. Truly stirring in multiple places.
23. Inter Arma - Paradise Gallows
A surprisingly controversial album on the MetalHeads podcast. It has some challenging aspects, length, for one, but the awesome parts are awesome.
24. Ihsahn – Arktis
Just a killer, epic album.
25. Metallica - Hardwired…To Self Destruct
I think this album rules. If you don't, that's cool too. If you think it sucks, I think you have Metallica-related baggage that you need to let go of.Mark didn't stop there. In the spirit of John's statistical analysis he scoured a bunch of other lists to see what the rest of the world liked best. From Mark: "Don't ask me WTF I did this for, but I compiled 40+ best of lists to figure out what everybody likes. Khemmis was very popular."
1. Khemmis - Hunted
2. Meshuggah - The Violent Sleep Of Reason
3. Blood Incantation - Starspawn
4. Gojira - Magma
5. Cobalt - Slow Forever
6. Vektor - Terminal Redux
7. Oranssi Pazuzu - Varahtelija
8. Astronoid - Air
9. SubRosa - For This We Fought the Battle of Ages
10. Nails - You Will Never Be One of Us
11. Sumac - What One Becomes
12. Cult of Luna & Julie Christmas - Mariner
13. Alcest - Kodama
14. Abbath - Abbath
Galen's List1. Virus - Memento Collider
2. Borknagar - Winter Thrice
3. Darkthrone - Arctic Thunder
4. Fates Warning - Theories of Flight
5. Opeth - Sorceress
6. Sumac - What One Becomes
7. Bethlehem - Bethlehem
8. Inquisition - Bloodshed Across The Empyrean Altar Beyond The Celestial Zenith
9. Abbath - Abbath
10. Khonsu - The Xun Protectorate
Neutrino's List1. Cult of Luna & Julie Christmas – Mariner
2. Inter Arma – Paradise Gallows
3. Obscure Sphinx – Epitaphs
4. Inquisition – Bloodshed Across The Empyrean Altar Beyond the Celestial Zenith
5. Borknagar – Winter Thrice
6. Virus – Memento Collider
7. Eternal Khan – Lost in the Night of Ages
8. Nordjevel - Nordjevel
9. Sumac – What one Becomes
10. Abbath – S/T
11. Dark Funeral – Where Shadows Forever Reign
12. Black Fucking Cancer – S/T
13. Sarke – Bogefod
14. Alcest - Kodama
15. Oranissi Pazuzu - Värähtelijä
Cam's List1. Running Wild - Rapid Foray
Although they don't sound like alike, Running Wild are basically Germany's AC/DC, to the extent that they have locked down a pretty recognizable formula of their own and continue to crank out some killer tunes decades since their inception. Rapid Foray is another raucous and jaunty pirate filled chapter in the saga of Rockin Rolf Kasparek. Stand out tracks: Warmongers, Black Bart, Last of the Mohicans.2. Blood Ceremony - Lord of Misrule
More people need to check this band out. Lord of Misrule really shows Blood Ceremony's remarkable growth and maturity as songwriters since the last album. The really tight, warm production sharpens the band's hard rock edges compared to previous outings. There's a primal feel to their 60's/70's influences as you're taken on an electric ride of occult wonderment. Some nice interludes and mood changes mixed among the more driving, hook-laden riffs and no song feels out of place. Stand out tracks: The Rogue's Lot, Lord of Misrule, Old Fires3. Enslaved - The Sleeping Gods/Thorn
I know this is technically not a new album but the songs are basically brand new to a majority of people. Enslaved has long been one of my absolute favorite bands. This is a great chunk of songs to tide the fans over until the next full length album. This release really showcases what Enslaved are aptly capable of doing and where they could be going musically. It's like each track is its own short story written by a different author but they all intertwine into a larger narrative. Enslaved continues to be a sonically diverse group. The true fans think they know what to expect with each successive record but there's always surprises with this band. I'm encouraged by this EP knowing Enslaved will keep pushing the boundaries and doing things their own special way. Stand out tracks: Heimvegen, Alu Misyrki, Nordlys.
Jani's List1. Vektor - Terminal Redux
2. Twilight Force - Heroes of Mighty Magic
3. Fleshgod Apocalypse - King
4. Opeth - Sorceress
5. Cult of Luna & Julie Christams - Mariner
6. Devin Townsend Project - Transcendence
7. Witherscape - Northern Sanctuary
8. Ghost - Popestar
9. Alcest - Kodama
10. Moonsorrow - Jumalten aika
Adem's List"Because I'm old, my picks for 2016 are primarily older bands or bands that sound old school."
1. Diamond Head - Diamond Head
2. Brain Tentacles - Brain Tentacles
3. The Shrine - Rare Breed
4. Destruction - Under Attack
5. Victims - Sirens
Shawn's ListThese were my 20 favorite albums of 2016. I’m not sure that they are the best albums of the year because as much as I listen to music, there are still a ton of discs I need to hear. But, I do know they are all great pieces of work. They are listed alphabetically.
Abbath – Abbath, Season of Mist
Want to know how important Abbath was to the Immortal sound? Listen to this disc and you will have a good idea. It harkens back to the best of Immortal, but also moves the sound forward in its own way. A powerful solo debut.Allegaeon – Proponent for Sentience, Metal Blade
This album just blew me away. The guitar work on it is fantastic and the new singer, Riley McShane brings a whole new level to the music. Saw these guys in Jersey without their drummer and it was perhaps the most unique set I have seen all year/decade.Amon Amarth – Jomsviking, Metal Blade
Might well be the best album I have heard in 2016. You know what you are going to get with Amon Amarth – sweeping, sonically lush tales of Viking derring-do. The boys have never done it better than they have with the disc.Charred Walls of the Damned – Creatures Watching Over the Dead, Metal Blade
I could listen to Richard Christy drum all day. But, this is more than just a platform for Christy’s virtuoso drummer; it is an accessible, varied album that should please fans of many different genres.Church of Misery – Then There Were None, Rise Above
Yes, Church of Misery has tapped the serial killer motif pretty dry in the past decade, but they have not exhausted their riffy, crusty, doomy musical presentation. This is a whole new version of Church of Misery (bassist Tatsu Mikami is the only member left from the last release) and it is different enough to be entertaining. Lead vocalist Scott Carlson adds a new bent to the whole macabre parade.Defeated Sanity – Disposal of the Dead/Dharmata, Willowtip
Basically, Defeated Sanity did a split with itself. Side A is traditional Defeated Sanity, big, crushing riffs, an omnipresent bass and drums galloping like a stampede of wildebeests. Side B is a throwback to the original Florida death metal scene and everything has a bit more of a flourish and virtuosity. The gang at Willowtip put out some Grade-A stuff each year, but this was the best of the best in my eyes.Die Like Gentleman – The Quickening Light, Independent
Introduced to this Portland contingent through the spectacular Doomed and Stoned in Portland sampler a few years back (Ten Hells by DLG is among my favorite songs of the past few years), I was excited to see Gentleman put out a new disc. It, as expected, perfectly captures the doomy, sludgy sound that should be a recognized export of the Northwest Territories of the United States, but does it in its own unique way. Die Like Gentleman are among my favorite finds in my musical wanderings.Eight Bells, Landless, Battleground
Another Portland band, this one is almost without description or genre classification. Yes, it is doomy, but it is also proggy. Singer Melynda Jackson creates a sense of yearning with almost every song.Every Time I Die – Low Teens, Epitaph
The ETID crew has a tried-and-true formula. They make aggressive, but fun music with clever, intelligent lyrics. On Low Teens they do it as well as they have at any point in the past decade. A fun album.Gojira – Magma, Roadrunner
This is different. Not in a better or worse way, just different for Gojira. Melancholy is explored throughout the album, which is not as confrontational or as in your face as past offerings. Sometimes, change can be good. This is one of those times.Hammers of Misfortune – Dead Revolution, Metal Blade
This is in my Top 5 for 2016, but that is no surprise. I have been a champion of this outfit, and particularly John Cobbett for many years now. Cobbett is an underrated guitarist, as this album once again shows. So many people are pissed off, for a variety of reasons, in 2016, but Cobbett and Co. show an intelligence to their anger/frustration in this offering. A must listen!Hatebreed – Concrete Confessional, Nuclear Blast
Hatebreed is one of those bands that you either get or you don’t. I get everything about Hatebreed and always have. Their message has gotten me through more than one tough stretch in my life and I’m sure they will do so again.Killswitch Engage – Incarnate, Roadrunner Records
Vocalist Jesse Leach said he wanted to make people think with the lyrics on this album. He did just that, but KSE still managed to surround the message with the standard elements that have come to define their sound.Nails – You Will Never Be One of Us, Nuclear Blast
Thank god this album was a mere 21 minutes long because it is a full-out frontal assault by Nails that will leave you breathless and maybe a bit fearful. A perfect dose of grindcore.Product of Hate – Buried in Violence, Napalm Records
It’s got some groove in it. It’s got some power in it. It’s got some violence in it. It’s got a sick level of thrashy musicianship in it. All in all, not a bad debut for these Wisconsin-based lads.Revocation – Great is our Sin, Metal Blade
Among the most technically sound discs on this list, this Boston four-man just keeps getting better with each release. Ash Pearson, the band’s new drummer on this album, is a great addition.Shammasch – Triangle, Prosthetic
This is 100 minutes of the most experimental, challenging, beautiful music you will ever hear. This is a triple album concept and each disc is a stand-alone achievement. The second album is the best thing these Swiss boys have done to date. Can’t recommend this – or their earlier stuff enough.Sumac – What One Becomes, Profound Lore
Oh man, this album is all over the place. That is not a criticism, it is a complement. It is a different listen each time. Listen once for the vocals, the unique raspy howl of Aaron Turner. Listen again for the guitar, which yo-yos from chaotic to concise. Or the rhythm section, which is completely on point. Just make sure you listen, again and again.Tombs – All Empires Fall, Relapse
This is not the Tombs I once knew. There is no denying they have moved in a new direction with this EP. I for one am OK with it as it harkens back at times, while also moving forward, to the gothic metal on which I cut my teeth almost 30 years ago. Among the most interesting discs I heard this year.Trap Them, Crown Feral, Prosthetic
The songs are fast, both in style and duration and the lyrics are belligerent. In other words, this is a typical Trap Them offering; but in reality it is not. Simply, they do everything better on this album than they have in the past and that is a good thing.
Mike's List1. Oranssi Pazuzu - Värähtelijä
2. Inter Arma - Paradise Gallows
3. Neurosis - Fires Within Fires
4. Sumac - What One Becomes
5. Swans - The Glowing Man
6. Batushka - Litourgiya (technically a 2015 release-Dec. 5-but I didn't hear it till this year, so I'm sticking with it)
7.Gorguts - Pleiades Dust
8. Cult Of Luna/Julie Christmas - Mariner
9. Schammasch - Triangle
10. Abbath - s/t
11. Voivod - Post Society
12. A.M.S.G - Hostis Universi Generis
13. Cobalt - Slow Forever
14. Zhrine - Unortheta
15. Wovenhand - Star Treatment
16. Antaeus - Condemnation
17. Almyrkvi -Pupil of the Searing Maelstrom
18. Aluk Todolo - Voix
19. Inquisition - Bloodshed Across the Empyrean Altar Beyond the Celestial Zenith
20. Darkthrone - Arctic Thunder
Chris' List15 Albums of 2016 You Need to Check Out (But Might Not Have Yet)
by Chris Voss (aka Necrolytic Goat Converter)
You can say a lot of things about 2016, but one thing you cannot say is that there wasn’t an ridiculous abundance of great metal releases. Cast a stone this time of year and everyone and their brother are writing up end of year lists (there are probably some great ones right here on this very website). Hell, over on my new stomping grounds I took a sizable amount of space to talk about why we make lists, what they say about us, and what my particular end of year list said about me.
Now here’s where it gets crazy: that list had 45 records on it. And it wasn’t even CLOSE to the end of great metal I heard this year.
So when Buke graciously asked me if there was anything I wanted to contribute to the Metalheads Best of 2016 Lists (and can I take a moment to fanboy out and and say that, as far as metal podcasts go, this marathon of great music conversation is doing stuff no one else is? This is what real passion sounds like and we need more of it) I immediately jumped at the chance to talk about some of the other great metal out there that deserves your attention. The reach and breadth of what metal can be is expanding at an exponential rate, looking forward as much as it is looking back.
So in that spirit, I sat down and came up with the following list of gnarly, shredding and often triumphant metal that - if you haven’t had a chance to check out - you should get into your ears and brain as soon as possible. Think of this as the second course - when you read Buke, George, Jay, John and the rest of the gang’s lists come to the table, pull up a chair and let’s sit down for another course of the flesh that sustained me in 2016.
1. Attacker - Sins of the World
Metal on Metal Records doesn’t mess around; the focus is on old school heavy metal, and Attacker’s brand of blisteringly fast speed/power metal fast brings to mind the furious metal I grew up in the late 80s and 90s. It’s impossible not to drive your fist to tracks like “Carcosa” and the Geoff Tate-like screams in “We Rise.” When people bring up the term “old school” this is what comes to my mind.2. Bacterial Husk - Agnosia of Omens
Dark and dirty death metal EP that bring to mind early and classic Obituary, Cannibal Corpse and Leprosy-era Death with righteously scuzzy production that can’t mask the talent on sings like “Sculpting the Locust Deity” and “Leech Carriage.” This is hero worship executed flawlessly, and at only 15 minutes long it’s easy to play again and again.3. Burial in the Sky - Persistence of Thought
There are probably more well-known progressive/technical death metal albums released this year (ahem, Obscura *cough*) , but for my money the best album in that crowded quintillion notes a minute genre was Burial in the Sky with their self-released debut LP Persistence in Thought. Putting real emphasis on melody and structure they never lose sight of the song, and on barnburners like “Anchors” they show why they’re leaving other bands in their dust.4. Candiria - While They Were Sleeping
Probably the most well-known band on this list, but it’s simply criminal Candiria were overlooked on so many lists (including my own, which is why I’m rectifying it here). Putting a renewed emphasis on the heavier elements that marked classic records like The Process of Self Development this is everything that made me fall hard for this band. And yes, there are jazz breaks again.5. Dunsmuir – Dunsmuir
Do you really need me to tell you to check this out? It might have gotten lost in the shuffle of other records, but you tell me there’s a band playing hard 70s style metal and hard rock, and it features Neal Fallon (Clutch on vocals) as well as Vinny Appice from all that was great in the 70s and 80s (Black Sabbath, Dio) and I will storm any gate to get a piece of this. It doesn’t disappoint.6. Green Bastard – Pyre
Fuzzed out sludge/doom out of New Hampshire, Green Bastard evoke early Torche and the best of bands like Sleep, OM, and even a little Hawkwind to craft three sprawling tracks of great feedback driven metal. The bass of frontman Spencer Benson can summon Elder Gods and move your soul four inches to the left. This is what happens when you move forward while acknowledging your forebears.7. Imperium Dekadenz - Dis Manibvs
On album #3 the Austrian black metal merchants continue their unique brand of melodic, atmospheric black metal, accentuating the darkened mood on tracks like “Only Fragments of Light” but always knowing the best way to focus their power without sliding into sloppy tremolo-picked rote black metal. Melancholic majesty reigns on “Still I Rise” and “Volcano.”8. Krypts - Remnants of Expansion
This is how you do death/doom, folks. Cold and sinister and dirge-like without actually being all that slow is quite a feat, and on tracks like “The Withering Titan” Krypts pull it off like it’s no big deal. This was a huge help standing out in the cold watching my kid’s soccer games, just saying...9. Mesarthim - The Great Filter
I had a hard time trying to figure out which of the FIVE releases Australian DSBM band Mesarthrim put out this year to represent the amazingly consistent work they’ve done, and then just a few days ago this single 21:33 track was put out and it’s everything great about this mysterious entity. Shifting moods and tones organically there’s not a bad second, let alone moment on this. Perfect introduction if you’re not familiar.10. Mothra - Decision Process
Instrumental band carrying the Tool torch loud and proud. I’d stop short of calling them a clone, however; there’s a myriad of influences from shoegaze to post-rock that twist and turn in the folks of each song. The beautiful production helps to give each instrument the space needed to breathe and carry the whole album into a pace reserved for massive dreams.11. Sarcoptes - Songs And Dances of Death
Yeah, it’s pretty much straight ahead 90s symphonic black metal, but there’s a thrash quality I keep coming back to that I enjoy. The beginning of “The Fall of Constantinople” has a Slayer riff that kept me moving right into the unholy chants and blast beats. Nothing is reinventing the wheel (or Steel) but it’s good, clean and evil fun.12. Slaves BC - All is Dust and I Am Nothing
One of two small “cheats” in this list, as technically this was on my honorable mentions list, but I wanted to devote a little more space to it. Slaves BC is furious blackened hardcore that pummels you into submission. Kicking off with “God Has Turned His Back” each song meditates on the human experience, particularly as it relates to faith. Shots of doom occasionally serve to vary the intense and brutal experience Slaves BC provides, but I think it’s one worth having.13. Tarot – Reflections
You have to reach way back to the beginning of the year for this slice of retro art rock that has a huge debt to 70s art rock like Deep Purple and Uriah Heep as well as modern occult masters like The Devil’s Blood. It’s heavy in the same way the latest (and outstanding) Opted record is, and you don’t think it’s metal, open you third eye and expand that mind, man... This is music to get lost in. Headphones essential.14. Twilight Fauna - Fire of the Spirit
The second and final of my “cheats” Twilight Fauna’s latest is not an easy listen, and it’s not one that I can turn on at any time. It’s mix of cavernous noise/metal and Appalachian neo/dark folk demands a careful and patient ear, and rewards the listener with nuances that are revelatory as a musical experience. This is experimental but simultaneously deeply personal and human. Take your time and you won’t be disappointed.15. Wildhunt – Descending
And we end where we began, with one of my favorite labels. If both the Euro thrash of Wildhunt and the speed metal fury of Attacker don’t turn you onto Metal on Metal Records, I can't help you. With songs like “Age of Torment” and “History Deletes Itself” this is the perfect blast of retro metal that continues to remind me of what brought me to the genre in the first place and why I keep pursuing it in every corner and genre.Thanks to Metalheads and especially to Buke for inviting me to share some music with you all. Let’s keep it heavy in 2017!
Necrolytic Goat Converter: https://necrogoatconverter.bandcamp.com
RocknRoll Beer Guy's List1. Revocation- Great is Our Sin
2. Everytime I Die - Low Teens
3. Dillinger Escape Plan - Dissassociation
4. Car Bomb - Meta
5. Meshuggah - Violent Sleep of Reason
6. Oathbreaker - Rheia
7. Opeth - Sorceress
8. Brain Tentacles - Self Titled
9. Killswitch Engage- Incarnate
10. Twelve Foot Ninja- Outlier
Check out RocknRoll Beer Guy:
Dan's List1. Inter Arma – Paradise Gallows
2. Cobalt – Slow Forever
3. Vektor – Terminal Redux
4. Deathspell Omega – The Synarchy of Molten Bones
5. Oathbreaker – Rheia
6. The Dillinger Escape Plan – Dissociation
7. Mizmor – Yodh
8. Ketzer – Starless
9. Child Bite – Negative Noise
10. Sumac – What One Becomes
11. Zhrine – Unortheta
12. Schammasch – Triangle
13. Oranssi Pazuzu – Värähtelijä
14. Inverloch – Distance|Collapsed
15. Meshuggah – The Violent Sleep of Reason
16. Wildernessking – Mystical Future
17. Gorguts – Pleiades’ Dust
18. Blood Incantation – Starspawn
19. Asphalt Graves – The New Primitive
20. The Lion’s Daughter – Existence Is Horror
21. Neurosis – Fires Within Fires
22. Eerie – Eerie
23. Ulcerate – Shrines of Paralysis
24. Ripper – Experiment of Existence
25. Martyrdöd - List
Top 5 Albums That I Wish I Spent More Time With
1. Anaal Nathrakh – The Whole of the Law
2. Anciients – Voice of The Void
3. Opeth – Sorceress
4. Hammers of Misfortune – Dead Revolution
5. Katatonia – The Fall of Hearts
Top 5 Albums That Aren’t Metal But Can Appeal To Metal Peeps!
1. Soft Kill – Choke
2. MONO – Requiem For Hell
3. Super Unison – Auto
4. Tiny Moving Parts – Celebrate
5. Gost – Non Paradisi (Secret Arcana)
John's List1. Thrawsunblat - Metachthonia
2. SkeletonWitch - Apothic Gloom [EP]
3. Gruesome - Dimensions of Horror [EP] (better than Savage Land and I even bought the tshirt)
4. Ihsahn - Arktis.
5. Destroyer 666 - Wildfire
6. Uhtcearu - Plight of the Wanderers
7. Kvelertak - Nattesferd
8. Alcest - Kodama
9. Cobalt - Slow Forever (Would be 3-4 if I cut it down to 1 disc)
10. Anthrax - For All Kings
11. Hyperion - Seraphical Euphony
12. Witchery - In His Infernal Majesty's Service
13. Rotting Christ - Rituals
14. Witchcraft - Nucleus
15. Inter Arma - Paradise Gallows
16. Borknagar - Winter Thrice
Rick's ListIn no order:
Prerdatory Light - Predatory Light
Demon Bitch - Hellfriends
Slaves BC - All is Dust and I am Nothing
Zhrine - Unortheta
Wormrot - Voices
Trap Them - Crown Feral
Temple Nightside - The Hecatomb
Blood Incantation - Starspawn
Gevurah - Hallelujah
Mizmor - Yodh
Urzeit - Anmoksha
Uskumgallu - Rotten Limbs in Dreams of Blood
Mare Cognitum - Luminiferous Aether
Mare Cognitum/Aureole - Resonance Crimson Void
Chthe'ilist - Le Dernier Crepuscule
Altarage - Nihil
Matt's ListKhemmos - Hunted
Neurosis - Fire Within Fires
Nails - You'll Never Be One Of Us
Seven Sisters of Sleep - Ezekiel's Hags
Holy Serpent - Temples
Abbath - Abbath
Inquisition - Bloodshed Across The Empyrean Altar Beyond The Celestial Zenith
Gost - Non Paradisi (not metal)
Gojira - Magma
Myrkur - Mausoleum
Perturbator - The Uncanny Valley (not metal)
Winterfylleth - The Dark Hereafter
Kvelertak - Nattesferd
Domkraft - End of Electricity
Brant Bjork - Tao of the Devil
Graves at Sea - The Curst That Is
Slomatics - Future Echo Returns
Conan - Revengeance
Matthew's List1. Wormed - Krighsu
2. Thrawsunblat - III: Metachthonia
3. Blood Incantation - Starspawn
4. Obscura - Akroasis
5. Chthe'ilist - Le Dernier Crépuscule
6. Oranssi Pazuzu - Varahtelija
7. Vektor - Terminal Redux
8. Incarceration - Catharsis
9. Khemmis - Hunted
10. Inter Arma - Paradise Gallows
11. Ihsahn - Arktis
12. Omnility - Dominion of Misery
13. Tombs - All Empires Fall
14. Death Fetish - Clandestine Sacrament
15. Frozen Ocean - The Prowess of Dormition
16. Ancestor's Blood - Hyperborea
17. Show Me The Wolves - The World They Took Over
18. Cult of Luna/Julie Christmas - Mariner
19. Rorcal - Creon
20. Trap Them - Crown Feral
Carbomb - Meta
Blood Ceremony - Lord of Misrule
Fallujah - Dreamless
Revocation - Great is Our Sin
Nick's List15. Metallica - Hardwired...To Self Destruct
I already got a slot of slack from people in the metal community for even mentioning this record, but FUCK THEM! I don't listen to the music I listen to to impress anybody. This album really made me happy. The last Metallica Album I really enjoyed was the" Black Album" after that the next 4 records were not really my cup of tea. I felt like a little kid again listening to the Black Album the day I got it. Great riffs, amazing song writing. Metallica really caught me off guard with this one.14. Nails - You Will Never Be One Of Us
This is not my favorite Nails album, but it was a good one. There was a lot of hype surrounding this record when it came out. I enjoy Todd's crushing riffs and angry vocals. Earlier this year I saw Nails for the 2nd time (they never like to come south of Philadelphia, but hopefully this tour in March stays) and when they broke into the title track the place went nuts. It reminded me why I love this band so much in the first place. By the time I got this record in the mail I was pretty stoked to hear how great the songs were considering "abandon all life" was a hard record to follow up.13. Brain Tentacles - Self Titled
Some may say this is not a metal record, and that is fine. Dave Witte is a phenomenal drummer and the saxophone adds a great touch to this album. This album has a John Zorn "Naked City" vibe to it, and that's always a good thing. I caught these guys live with Gorguts back in October and they were even better live.12. Gorguts - Pleiades’ Dust
A large part of me did not want to add this to the list mostly because it felt more like an EP than a full length. Gorguts (Luc in general) are brilliant. This album has so many elements of Prog, death metal, avant grade, and all around great riffs. I caught these guys live back in October and they played the entire record and it made me more impressed with this release.11. Despised Icon - Beast
Despised Icon are who I hold responsible for my videos success on Youtube. If it weren't for Alex Erian re posting my videos on their My Space page back in 2006 no oone would have ever checked out any of my videos. When they called it quits back in 2010, I was bummed out because seeing these guys perform live makes me so happy. When I heard this record I was blown away that they still had it in them to write great music. The drums on this album are unreal, its like Alex Grind somehow got faster than he was before. I have nothing for love for this band and this record.10. Wormed - Krighsu
Wormed is probably my favorite Brutal Death metal or Slam band out there. This new record picked up where the last one left off with crazy guitar riffs, super fast drums and one of the scariest sounding vocals you will ever hear in your life. I was lucky to catch these guys twice at MDF this year, and they performed quite a few songs from this record both sets.9. Sex Prisoner - Tannhäuser Gate
To those who are not familiar with Sex Prisoner they are a hardcore/power violence band out of Arizona, They have a super sludgy guitar tone and crushing vocals. This is actually their first full length album ,they have released a bunch of demo's and 7" records before they finally put out a whole album. This band reminds me a lot of Weekend Nachos mixed with Eyehategod.8. Animals As Leaders - The Madness Of Many
Tosin is a fucking genius. Each AAL record is more different from the previous, I wondered how they would be able to be different from "The Joy Of Motion" and somehow they did it. The track "Cognitive Contortions" in particular has a mega man 2 level vibe to it that captured my attention immediately. This band can do no wrong.7. Weekend Nachos - Apology
It saddens me that this is their last album. Some of the best live sets I have seen over this past decade have come from Weekend Nachos. I was not that impressed with the previous album "Still" but they certainly made up for it with this one. Every song on this album delivers crushing guitars with angry vocals on top. I will truly miss these guys and my vinyl collection of theirs is going to finally stop growing.6. Asphalt Graves - The New Primitive
To anyone who is unfamiliar with this band it consist of Jason Netherton (Misery Index), Brent Purgason (Gwar), Shannon Lucas (Ex-BDM) and Adam Faris who is a RVA local musician. This album has an early Misery Index/Napalm Death-Fear Emptiness Despair vibe to it. Very grindy with an amazing guitar tone and crushing drum sounds. They cover a Disrupt and a Nasum song on this record so if you are a fan of either of those bands check out Asphalt Graves, you wont be disappointed.5. Car Bomb - Meta
When I was making my top 2016 list I was going to add Meshuggah to this list, but when I heard this record I had to kick them off all together. Car Bomb is a very techy/prog metal band that has a drummer that might as well be from outer space bacuase I cannot describe how unreal his drumming is. After three attempts I caught them live finally in Philadelphia this past November and they did not disappoint.4. Magrudergrind - II
This was the very first new album of 2016 I bought, and GODDAMN!! Magrudergrind and fucking incredible! Avi is one of my favorite vocalists, his scream is so insane it literally makes you want to get up and break something. I was so impressed with this album that I bought three copies on vinyl!!3. Revocation - Great Is Our Sin
Some may think I am bias with this band because of how great of friends I am with these guys. You may be right about that, but you cant deny how great of song writers they are. Dave Davidson truly is one of the best guitarist of our generation. This is their first album with Ex Three Inches Of Blood drummer Ashley Pearson and he shows you why they replaced Phil with him. By the second track on this album you get a full blown explosion of metal in your ears. I cant say enough good things about this band except this album is the reason these guys are one of my favorite bands.2. The Dillinger Escape Plan - Dissociation
Again another great band making their final album in 2016. One thing I took away from this album was that this was by far their best produced album, and probably their best album all around. This is another album that I loved so much that I own 6, YES 6 copies of it on vinyl.1. Vektor - Terminal Redux
Vektor is a really special band to me. To most people its just thrash. To me they are a progy thrash band with black metal-ish vocals. I got an extremely advanced copy of this album (3 months before it was released) and by the 2nd listen I could tell that this was going to be my favorite album of the year. Every member of this band is really talented at their instrument and it shows in full on this record. There are some parts of this album that may turn the average metal fan off, but I say you gotta progress your sound to stay relevant in this genre and they did just that. All in all I was extremely impressed with how great the song writing was on this album, an amazing follow up to 2011's Outer Isolation.