With December winding down, I figured it’s time to share my top albums for 2018 (no, I did not include any of my own albums).
Most people do a top 10, but I can’t narrow my list to less than 15, so you get 5 bonus albums AT NO ADDITIONAL COST!
1. Memoriam – The Silent Vigil
2. Hot Snakes – Jericho Sirens
3. Surfbort – Friendship Music
4. Pile – Odds and Ends
5. Secret Cutter – Quantum Eraser
6. Superstition – Surging Throng of Evil’s Might
7. Ron Gallo – Stardust Birthday Party
8. Mammoth Grinder – Cosmic Crypt
9. Soulfly – Ritual
10. Anguish – Anguish
11. Innumerable Forms – Punishment in Flesh
12. Nequient – Wolves at the Door
13. Bass Drum of Death – Just Business
14. Drawn and Quartered – The One Who Lurks
15. At the Gates – To Drink from the Night Itself
In case you want my opinions:
This is a no brainer- KARL WILLETTS. One of the best things about Memoriam is that Karl seems to have more freedom/flexibility lyrically to deliver messages like anti-racism in songs like “Bleed the Same,” and a lot of times you really hear the punk in him shine through.
Hot Snakes returns, basically picking up harder than where they left off. John Reis’ surfy/post-punk riffs pummel into your head and never leave. His energy level in concert is off the charts, easily one of the best performances I’ve seen in the last few years.
Fun, goofy, often political, dumb (in the best way) punk. I mean, their name is Surfbort, what’s not to like?
A collection of singles and unreleased tracks, some more on the post-hardcore side and some more indie. As a whole, it’s a pretty solid album. Vocalist Rick Maguire’s voice kicks ass when he pushes it into screams, but his clean singing voice is good too.
Sludgy grind that kind of reminds me of when I saw Catheter live in 2009. Heavy down-tuned riffs, violent vocals, the kind of thing you’d expect me to like I guess.
Reverberant yet surprisingly tight death metal. I’d go more in depth, but my review of this is mostly “it’s awesome!”
Ron Gallo has been putting out a ton of great albums in a short amount of time. This album floats between 70’s rock, indie, and punk, and is a great follow up to the EP released just at the beginning of this year, “Really Nice Guys” (which I would also recommend). Listen to “Bridge Crossers.”
My friend Adam’s band played a show with them sort of recently and said they ruled and sounded like Entombed. That’s my attempt at explaining why this album is awesome. It’s super echoey, spacey, thumpy, old school death metal.
Exactly what you want from a post-Sepultura Max Cavalera. A lot of this album is just straight death metal and even features Ross from Immolation on “Under Rapture.” Super heavy riffs. While listening to “Bite the Bullet,” Christina keeps singing along “buy tabouleh,” and now that’s all I can hear when I listen to it.
Is this some sort of hip hop/jazz/poetry album? Probably, it’s not exactly my area of expertise. What I do know, is that anything dälek gets involved with ends up being good, and this is no exception.
Probably my favorite death doom band from the last decade, they take “Contaminated” off their first EP and expand/extend it into “Re-Contaminated”
My buddies in Chicago put out their heaviest album yet! “On the Day of Execution” is super sludgy, definitely my favorite track.
Fun garage rock, although more cleaned up than the first two albums. I think I listened to the title track disproportionately more than the rest.
Drawn and Quartered always deliver exactly what you expect them to, and that’s super evil underground death metal. “Horned Shadows Rise” is one of the standout tracks, definitely check it out.
I think this album grew on me a lot. The first time I listened to it, I thought it was good, but I definitely like it more now. Obviously it’s not Slaughter of the Soul, but it’s not trying to be. It’s just an excellently bleak melodic death metal album.
Lastly, here’s the ongoing Spotify playlist I’ve been adding my favorite songs to all year (whenever I remember):