It is patently obvious that my love for death metal has waned or that I am much more choosy in my listening habits when it comes to that genre of metal. This year has been pretty slim pickings when it comes to all things grim and deathly. I've enjoyed quite a few albums but death metal just doesn't excite like in the old days. Or even if it does it's merely a temporary surge before I settle for other forms of metal and rock. In any case, here are 30 titles that managed to float my boat somewhat
30. Renascent - Praise of the Lord God Almighty
Christian Melodic death metal in case you were wondering. My fandom for melodeath has almost totally gone. I haven't even listened to the new In Flames album. This is good as far as melodeath goes though. I enjoy it for what it is. The riffing is interesting and has loads of spacey keys and is still melodic whilst showing good technical skill.
29. Invoking The Abstract - Aural Kaliedoscopes
Instrumental tech death merchants. I have no info about them but I enjoyed this vocal-free exercise in finger acrobatics!
28. Nothgard - The Sinner's Sake
I believe it's a side project or side band from the Equilibrium guys. It's not quite as good as the main band it's a fairly enjoyable and energetic listen to symphonic melodic, folky, death metal.
27. Bestial Deform - ...Ad Leones
Unknown Russian death metal. Very heavy and groovy and enjoyable with a crystal clear punchy sound.
26. Destroying the Devoid - Paramnesia
Interesting, symphonic tech death done by one man basically. The guy can serious shred his axe and is a pretty neat tech death smith. His vocals are a bit shitty but who cares they ain't that bad. Nice atmospheric parts too for someone that doesn't really do atmosphere.
25. Divinity - The Immortalist pt2 - Momentum
Only a 4 tracker but it kills. Awesome sound and riffs. Furious and catchy too!
24. Absendent - Decaying Human Conditions.
Choppy thrashy death with big sound. Cool choppy riffs everywhere. Vocals annoying but just about stomach-able.
23. Ahtme - The Demonization.
Excellent, bullet fast, death blasting with an expert drummer. Like a mix between Vader and Decapitated.
22. Allegaeon - Proponent For Sentience
Hmm at first I wasn't sure about this melodic tech death but then by the middle and towards the latter parts of the album it got really good suddenly. You need patience with this but you'll be rewarded in the end. I wish it was a bit more concise but it still rules anyway.
21. Destroyers Of All - Bleak Fragments
Groovy and tech and a bit weird but a very interesting listen. These guys have their own ideas that's for sure. They play a mix of technical death and groove metal and I managed to listen on a regular basis for a good while.
20. Entheos - The Infinite Nothing
These guys whilst not amazing have a knack for choppy tech riffs and a cyber space atmosphere and groove that make them sound like Fear Factory gone uber tech. Pretty interesting and cool release.
19. Omnium Gatherum - Grey Heavens
High quality melodeath. I loved their debut way back and since then it's mainly miss but they worked some kind of magic into the riffs this time. Enjoyable effort by the Finns.
18. Equilibrium - Armageddon
I was all set to be lukewarm towards this as the lead single Born to be Epic was so so. Well I needn't have worried. I love it. It's a joy to listen to this album. I love the gorgeous happy keyboards that Equilibrium use whilst the riffs are played with total abandon. A nice ride indeed!
17. Bloodshed - Rising
Grooving heavy death metal with great riffs. This is how I like my death metal. Heavy and grooving with awesome vokills. Neat and concise song writing as well make this a very listenable piece of angry music.
16. Open Surgery - Post Mortem Mutilation
I was expecting this to be some lo-fi shit looking at the cover but I was actually surprised. I heard quite cool semi-melodic death metal. Like a slower Cannibal Corpse with loads of catchy riffs and grooves. Palatable to a regular death metal supporter.
15. Ribspreader - Suicide Gate - A Bridge to Death
Old school death metal from Rogga Johansson, the guy who has a shed load of these albums in a million bands under his belt. I find that he doesn't come up with the goods all the time but I enjoyed this latest offering from Ribspreader enough for it to make my list. Production, is good, riffs roll and rock and twist, whilst the vokills are typically old school and cool. If you enjoy old school death, you'll probably like Ribspreader.
14. Harmony Dies - Indecent Paths of A Ramifying Darkness
Just a 6 tracker but very heavy and catchy death. Great grooves and great heavy vocals. Everything I seek in simple catchy death.
13. Deceptionist - Initializing Irreversible Process
Back to tech death we go and this time a more brutal and tight version when compared to Vale of Pnath. These guys are not a band I have heard of before but this album is filled with precise double kicks and fierce riffage to help me make my mean faces when I'm on the train in the morning!
12. Syrinx - Black Spring
Imagine Morbid Angel heavy grooves with a polished production and you have Syrinx somewhat. Some parts tend to get a bit too pedestrian but I really enjoyed this every time I played it. Great grooves!
11. Mithras - On Strange Loops
The long awaited return of the Uk's over the top, sci-fi atmospheric death metal band. They play so fast it sounds like their playing backwards, you know that sound. They still strongly sound like a punchier and ethereal Morbid Angel to me. These songs have some majestic passages that bewilder with intensity. Best thing about the album is probably the other-worldly solos that mess with the space time continuum.
10. Cognizance - Illusory EP
Fluid, extra shiny and tight melodic tech death EP. Lovely, tingly, techy guitar riffs rail along with complete abandon throughout. Fingers setting frets alight at a million notes per second!
09. Bloodbeat - Murderous Art
Damn this is some catchy shit! Old school death riffs everywhere and a Chuck like vocal. Really really sick and catchy shit!
08. Orphalis - The Birth of Infinity
Fuck yeah! Death metal blasting suckers! This is how I like death metal basically. Unrelenting madness but with a lot of skill.
07. Blood Red Throne - Revocation of Humankind
Norwegian guys who've been missing for a while but I've always liked their albums. The new one sounds pretty similar to the others only they've completely done away with any black metal elements which is ok with me. The band has stomping groovy riffs and crisp sound. Only thing I noticed is that the vocals have become deeper and are slightly less good, but it's still better than black metal shrieking. The riffs and stomping grooves are still there in copious supply.
06. Carnophage - Monument
Holy fuckin' shit, The Turks are back! This turned up out of the blue it did. Damn it all to hell this is just insane fuckin' shit. Makes me pull the fuckin' meanest faces ever. Fast as a bullet, tighter than a gnat's snatch, pound you into fuckin' dust, death fuckin' metal if you 'scuse my language! Welcome back my Turkish brothers...!
05. Vale of Pnath - II
I loved these guys debut and I love this follow up. The screechy vox are a bit annoying but the music more than makes up for it. It's fluid, wondrous and melodic with a million notes from beginning to end.
04. Amon Amarth - Jomsviking.
Sounds even heavier and more crushing than usual at times. Some of the melody in the riffing is super enjoyable. AA never lets their fans down that's for sure!
03. Virvum - Into the Void
Heads down! Let's go! Tech death whirling machine time. Drums at warp speed and riffs on high tech overdrive. Virvum sounds like when your wash is on the fastest spin cycle and there's no bloody end in sight!
02. Deviant Process - Paroxysm
I was slow to appreciate this but would've tried eventually tried it as it blew me away. Excellent, fantastically produced tech death machines these chaps. A joy to listen to the array of mastery on display. Guitar Hero Wizard level metal!
01. Volturyon - Cleansed By Carnage
When I saw this bad boy I thought fuckin' cool the Swedes are back! And boy are they back..This shit freakin' rules and then some. Super groovy, heavily crunched guitars and stunning vokills that shake the foundations. All very catchy indeed and a standard of death metal mastery that was pretty much unsurpassed this year.