It’s December, which means that everyone’s starting to look back at the year that was, even though we’re not quite through it yet. Over the next several weeks, Metal Insider will be bringing you our picks for the best albums of the year, as well as those from some of the artists that made some of it. We’ll start our look back with Metal Insider contributor Dan Kozuh. Want to hear what he’s writing about? Check out the Spotify playlist at the end of the chart. And hey, you can also follow us on Spotify.
10) Rotting Christ, Rituals (Season Of Mist)
This album is like an audiobook; it builds like an ancient epic of war, magic, demons, and death. The whole album feels theatrical, like a colossal German opera (although the band is Greek) wherein you don’t know exactly what is going on but you are enthralled and slightly scared.
Track Pick: “Les Litanies De Satan (Flures Du Mal)”
9) Causa Sui, Return to Sky (El Paraiso)
A wonderfully psychedelic album with a heavy heartbeat of drums to push it along. It has a very vintage feel to it, as though born out of the early metal scene of the early 70s, specifically of the UK band Atomic Rooster. While one may consider this psychedelic rock and not metal, I would group this with bands like Sleep and Weedeater. Return To Sky is a vicious, angry album… an approaching storm cloud through which the sun can barely peek.
Track Pick: “Dust Meridian”
8) Seven Sisters of Sleep, Ezekiel’s Hags (Relapse)
This album feels dangerous, like a monster who managed to break its chains it barrels towards you with no place to escape. Tracks like “War Monster” are so wonderfully unsteady it feels like a rickety carnival ride you are certain is one loose bolt from collapse.
Track Pick: “Denounce”