Monday, January 9, 2012

Top Metal Albums 2011 #30-21

#30 Disma: Towards The Megalith
Death Metal (USA)

#29 YOB: Atma
Stoner/Doom Metal (USA)
You must have noticed that YOB can be found on many year end lists, it also made mine at #29. The trademark for this Oregon based band are the epic songs consisting of huge riffs with downtoned guitars, various tempo changes within a single song and thick atmosphere.

At first these guys didn't really click with me, but the opener Prepare The Ground and this closer Adrift In The Ocean changed my mind.

#28 Iced Earth: Dystopia
Heavy Metal (USA)

#27 Rwake: Rest
Sludge Metal (USA)

#26 Altar Of Plagues: Mammal
Black Metal (Ireland)
How often would you use black metal and Ireland in the same sentence? Well, now you can when you listen to Altar Of Plagues. Guess the trve black metal elitists call this hipster or post black metal, but I don't care.

Mammal has only four songs clocking at 52 minutes offering massive, obscure, violent, depressive and even progressive moments yet making it intriguing and accessible. Altar Of Plagues on my list at #26. Check out the opening track Nepture Is Dead.

#25 Insomnium: One For Sorrow
Melodic Death Metal (Finland)

#24 Riot: Immortal Soul
Heavy/Speed Metal (USA)
In less than year ago I knew nothing about Riot. Now I am more than happy this more than 35 year old band caught my attention. Immortal Soul has all the great elements and moments of a 80's tradiotional heavy/speed metal album updated to 21th century.

Fall Before Me hit me like a hammer and the chorus will be stuck in your head for days. These guys deserve the #24 position.

#23 Týr: The Lay Of Thrym
Folk Metal (Faroe Islands)

#22 Arch / Matheos: Sympathetic Resonance
Progressive Metal (USA)
How many of you remember Fates Warning? Then you must remember John Arch, who still possesses one of the most unique and controversial voices in metal. You either love him or hate him.

Mr. Arch didn't tour for more than 10 years but returned to his day job being a carpenter. Needless to say his voice is still top notch at the age of 52 and the reunion with ex-Fates Warning guitarist Jim Matheos works like a charm.

#21 Satan's Host: By The Hands Of The Devil
Death/Speed/Thrash Metal (USA)
One of the craziest combination of genres is here: speed metal, thrash and black metal all blended together with clean vocals, sounds like a failure? Satan's Host is making it work with superb vocal delivery of Harry Conklin (ex-Jag Panzer) and singing harmonies, fierce blast beat drumming and relentless riffing.

By The Hands Of The Devil has that infernal and enchanting magic to it, you cannot help but surrender. SH takes #21 position my list.

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