Since 2019 is half over, we thought now would be a good time to share some of our favorites metal releases of the year so far. What’s your top ten? Let us know in the comments below.
Ian Lovdahl (Contributing Editor)
I’m always nervous about new music at the beginning of a year. It’s probably because I spend the last week of December obsessing over my “Album of the Year” list, reviewing my spiral books and copious note, and thinking that it could never get better than this. Luckily, I’m wrong, because it always gets better. So far, 2019 has been a doozy of a good year for metal, and I was surprised how tough it was to narrow this list down to ten. I didn’t expect so many black metal albums on this list, but it’s been a tremendous year for the genre at this halfway point. These are actually ranked in ascending order, but if you’ve read my articles this year, it’s probably obvious what my #1 so far is.
And just a personal note, these aren’t my top 10 albums of the halfway point for all 2019 music. If you’ve read any of my Beneath the Vault features, you might have found that my musical tastes extend far beyond just black metal. For more non-metal recommendations, check out the Beneath the Vault articles every Friday.
10. Saor – Forgotten Paths
9. Kaatayra – No Ruidar da Mata que Mirra
8. Svatan – Blazing Winds of Transcendence
7. Orthostat – Monolith of Time
6. Laetitia in Holocaust – Fauci Tra Fauci
5. Troll – Legend Master
4. Nocturnus A.D. – Paradox
3. Krzysztof Drabikowski – ПАНИХИДА
2. Epectase – Astres
1. SUNN O))) – Life Metal
Spencer Hotz (Contributing Editor)
For the last three years, death metal has reigned supreme. Black metal of a great variety, however, is making a strong case for being 2019’s ruler. Whether folksy, searing, old school, experimental, technical or whatever else, the black metal offerings on display are well worth your time. That being said, the metal world is bringing champions from every genre to steal your ear time. Here are 10 albums I can’t stop listening to.
10. Beorn’s Hall – In His Granite Realm
Renaissance fair music, but the weapons are real and competitors will die
9. Body Void – You Will Know the Fear You Forced Upon Us
Pure pain put to tape (or chip, or whatever things are recorded on now)
8. Morild – Så kom mørket og tog…
Plumb your black metal from deepest depths of the ocean
7. Triumvir Foul – VT-XXIV || Urine of Abomination
It may only be 16-minutes long, but that’s 16 minutes of the best death metal you’ll listen to all year
6. Sadness – Circle of Veins
Would you like some dance-friendly synth work in your black metal?
5. Ossuarium – Living Tomb
OSDM, but with atmosphere and slightly lengthier jams
4. Venom Prison – Samsara
Skip your supplements, hit play and gain 10 pounds of muscle after one listen
3. Funereal Presence – Achatius
Do you wish black metal bands paid more homage to Mercyful Fate while remaining modern?
2. Inter Arma – Sulphur English
Caution: contains more fire than the inferno on the cover indicates
1. Mastiff – Plague
Burliness, breakdowns, Battlestar Gallactica….wait