What a glorious year in metal we just experienced. After the sheer amount of quality albums that were released in 2018, there is no question that the genre is as healthy and full of life as ever. Thus, making our top albums lists harder than usual.
For the APESHIT goons, 2018 was the year where the legends all shined. JUDAS PRIEST led the charge with their best album since 1990’s Painkiller. DIMMU BORGIR finally emerged from a long slumber and did not disappoint. VOIVOD remain the gods that the mass metal media won’t acknowledge as such. We can’t really think of any letdowns. Can you?
How often does the band that is paying tribute to their idols go as far as to surpass them? Well, GRUESOME‘s Twisted Prayers is one of those rare instances where the students becomes better than the master. Modeled after the style of DEATH‘s leap forward, Spiritual Healing, GRUESOME perfectly capture the birth of progressive/technical death metal.
Not only are all the nuances, that only true fans could recognize and capture, but the damn riffs and hooks are just killer. There are no drop offs throughout Twisted Prayers. Thus, there is no need to highlight any songs. Those beautiful instrumental runs and that heart pumping sense of urgency keep things moving.
Hell, you even have guitarist James Murphy, who played on Spiritual Healing, playing solos on “Crusade of Brutality” and “At Death’s Door” to add to the authenticity of the experience.
What is also important to note is that GRUESOME‘s guitar crunch here is perfection. Also, Gus Rios‘ drums sound so natural and balanced in the mix. Big props to producer Jarrett Pritchard for created such a modern, yet true death metal sound to the album.
Somewhere Chuck Shuldiner has a huge shit eating grin when he sees how GRUESOME is carrying on his legacy. Hail. (Relapse Records)
Relapse Records is proud to announce the official signing of extreme metal act EXPULSION. The newly formed group features members of REPULSION, EXHUMED, PHOBIA, INTRONAUT, GRUESOME and numerous others. The band has shared the full details of their debut album Nightmare Future due out July 14th on CD/LP/Digital. Hear the track “Altar of Slaughter”:
Spawned from the cerebral mind of grind legend Matt Olivo (REPULSION), EXPULSION combines grind, punk and crust into a caustic musical vomit guaranteed to stack the corpses high. Olivo‘s partner-in-grind, Matt Harvey (EXHUMED, GRUESOME), was recruited over beers in a sweaty LA apartment to bring his classic brand of oratory assault. The additions of veterans, drummer Danny Walker (INTRONAUT, EXHUMED, PHOBIA) and bassist Menno Verbaten (LIGHTNING SWORDS OF DEATH), complete the fit-to-burn outfit. Expect nothing but the best of throat-shredding vocals, relentless blast beats, buzzsaw riffs and raw bass tones.
When looking back at 2015, the only thing that seems to matter is the passing of Lemmy Kilmister. Of course losing Phil “Philthy Animal” Taylor in November was sad but Lemmy was on another level – one of the pillars of the entire rock ‘n roll universe. Thankfully, he left a voluminous legacy for us to enjoy for eternity, including some of music’s best interviews and quotes possible. Cheers, Lemmy.
Other than that, 2015 was a remarkably strong year for the pioneering, long-running bands in the metal scene. Everyone from KILLING JOKE, MY DYING BRIDE, FEAR FACTORY to AMORPHIS put out fantastic records. This past year also saw some very good super groups in TAU CROSS and FIRESPAWN make their debuts. You’ll find that many of them made it to our respective lists.
Additionally, we’ve recruited some fresh blood in Charles Elliott, Andrew Sample, and Jeff Wagner. These industry vets have been in the trenches with us for years and years, and have helped bring you many of the greatest records ever released for the past 20+ years. Continue reading →