Friday, January 23, 2009

The Top Metal Albums of 2008

As I've said previously, 2008 was a weird year for music, and that goes double for metal. The underground kind of disappointed me this year. The big death-metal, black-metal and grindcore releases sounded like genre archetypes, not really doing anything different or even well. The bigger, more established metal bands had more of a stake than usual in metal in 2008 (uh… Metallica, AC/DC, Guns N' Roses [if it sold better], Slipknot, Disturbed [pbbbt], and so on). Tons of older bands reunited (Carcass, At the Gates, Brutal Truth… well, not totally but they played their first NYC show in 2008), saturating the market. There just wasn't much to latch onto.

My favorite extreme release was a compilation for a change. This Comp Kills Fascists contains everything I want in a grindcore CD: Tons of bands and tons of songs, but it still seems short. Producer Scott Hull should be proud; I'm looking forward to hearing Vol. 2 sometime soon. For what it's worth, the below represents sort of what I cared about, metallically, in 2008. This year is looking much better than the last (the new Cannibal Corpse is especially good), so let me just acknowledge these before I get totally distracted by something else.

  1. Various Artists, This Comp Kills Fascists
  2. Gojira, The Way of All Flesh
  3. Aura Noir, Hades Rise
  4. Nachtmystium, Assassins: Black Meddle, Part 1
  5. Trash Talk, Trash Talk
  6. Melvins, Nude With Boots
  7. Black Mountain, In the Future
  8. Jesu, Why Are We Not Perfect?
  9. Dismember, Dismember
  10. Opeth, Watershed
  11. Toxic Holocaust, An Overdose of Death…
  12. Phobia, 22 Random Acts of Violence
  13. Harvey Milk, Life… The Best Game in Town
  14. Metallica, Death Magnetic
  15. The Haunted, Versus

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