Best of 2013 (so far…)

It’s the time of the year again where we compile some of the albums that have grabbed our attention. We have seen and heard many good releases from bands young and old over the past year, and below is a non-exhaustive list of great records put out in the year 2013.

In no particular order:

Volbeat – Outlaw Gentlemen & Shady Ladies

Volbeat - Outlaw Gnetlemen & Shady Ladies

With their performance at Wacken, Volbeat has managed to keep me enchanted with the Elvis-like vocals of Michael Poulson, and the rock and roll vibe that the band has gotten going. Outlaw Gentlemen & Shady Ladies sees the band continuing in the same direction as before, only much more catchy with a more polished sound, making this album my personal favourite so far. Full review here

Black Sabbath – 13

Black Sabbath - 13

Black Sabbath‘s comeback album 13 has received mixed reviews, but the band’s ability to continue writing songs that remind fans of their classic days is still evident. There are numerous instances throughout the album where one is often reminded of Black SabbathParanoid and Master of Reality. Full review here

Ghost – Infetsissumam

Ghost - InfestissumamThis one took a bit getting used to. After the extremely hyped Opus Eponymous, expectations were high for Ghost, and honestly first listens were rather disappointing. Numerous spins later, Infestissumam sounds like a nice, coherent album rather than simply a compilation of good songs. Full review here

Orchid – Mouth of Madness

Orchid - The Mouths of Madness

Released shortly before Black Sabbath‘s 13Orchid‘s Mouth of Madness was a relief for fans who were eagerly waiting for the aforementioned. The band brings us back to the early days of rock and metal, with the psychedelic vibe and the bluesy sound being rather reminiscent of albums like Master of Reality. Full review here

Enforcer – Death by Fire

Enforcer - Death by Fire

Diamonds made Enforcer one of my favourite younger old school heavy metal bands, and this year’s Death by Fire solidifies their standing in my playlist. With Olof taking over guitar duties as well, the streamlined lineup proves to be faster and even more catchier on this album. Full review here

Impiety – The Impious Crusade

Impiety - The Impious Crusade

With a new visual style, Impiety continues their crusade against religion and humanity with their new EP, The Impious Crusade. Unlike the recent efforts of the band, The Impious Crusade will appeal to fans old and new, with the band fusing older elements of black/thrash along with the furious death metal of their later recordings. Full review here

Inquisition – Obscure Verses of the Multiverse

Inquisition - Obscure Verses for the Multiverse

On top of their usual ritualistic brand of black metal, Inquisition with their latest album Obscure Verses of the Multiverse brings in a more diverse range of elements, with Dagon experimenting with his guitar playing and Incubus sounding more ruthless than ever behind his kit. Full review here

Simon Yong – Alien Stole My Whiskey

Simon Yong - Alien Stole My WhiskeySimon Yong‘s debut full length instrumental effort brings in influences from some of my favourite solo guitarists, such as the technicality of Paul Gilbert, to the melody and emotions of Andy Timmons and the weirdness of Joe Satriani and Steve Vai. The progressive style that he plays in even reminds one of Dream Theater and Liquid Tension Experiment, and is sure to please fans of John Petrucci as well, as if the already diverse range of influences weren’t enough to get one interested. Full review here

Avulsed – Ritual Zombi

Avulsed - Ritual Zombi

4 years in the making, Dave Rotten and co. return with another brand new Avulsed albumin the form of Ritual Zombi. Music-wise, the band sounds like Rottrevore and Putrevore, as brutal and abrasive as all other Dave Rotten projects are, and lyrics-wise the band sticks to the zombie theme, even covering Death‘s Zombie Ritual, and certainly doing the track much justice. Full review here

Coffins – The Fleshland

Coffins - The Fleshlend

Coffins stands as one of my favourite death/doom metal bands, and on The Fleshland the band continues to prove themselves as one of the forces to be reckoned with. Fusing the grooviness of stoner/doom metal and the crushing intensity of death metal, the band easily starts a moshpit or gets one to headbang and lose oneself in The Fleshland.

Nocturnal Graves – …From the Bloodline of Cain

Nocturnal Graves - From the Bloodline of Cain

The Aussie outfit’s first release after the end of their hiatus, …From the Bloodline of Cain shows that Nocturnal Graves hasn’t lost any of their intensity despite the break. …From the Bloodline of Cain is even more intense than their previous release, with the bestial touch of bands like Blasphemophagher added into the mix to make things even more interesting than before. Full review here

Purtenance – Awaken from Slumber

Purtenance - Awaken From Slumber

Another contributor to this year’s Finnish death metal revival is Purtenance‘s Awaken from Slumber. Not losing any of their impact since their debut release in 1992, Awaken from Slumber sees the band including some of the grinding style of Bolt Thrower into the mix as well to make things even more crushing. Full review here

Cult of Fire – मृत्युकावीभत्सनृत्य

Cult of Fire - मृत्यु का तापसी अनुध्यानMind-blowing vedic metal, from where one would least expect to be from. Cult of Fire hails from Czech Republic, and their latest effort would keep fans of bands such as Rudra or Purvaja enchanted. Full review here

Grave Miasma – Odori Sepulcrorum

Grave Miasma - Odori Sepulcrorum

Grave Miasma‘s previous releases have kept me awaiting eagerly for even more new material, and this year sees the band releasing their debut album. Odori Sepulcrorum is an album that would definitely please fans of bands such as VasaelethUndergang or Incantation.

Beyond – Fatal Power of Death

Beyond - Fatal Power of Death

Germany proves what they are capable of again with Beyond‘s debut full length, Fatal Power of Death. Fusing elements of Finnish and Swedish death metal with a tinge of black metal, Fatal Power of Death is one album that is a classic in the making. Full review here

Tyrants Blood – Into the Kingdom of Graves

Tyrants Blood - Into The Kingdom Of Graves

Featuring ex-Blasphemy guitarist Marco, Tyrants Blood this year releases their third full length album, and perhaps their most diverse one to date. From the most bestial passages to some of soothing, melodic moments, Tyrants Blood manages to display their versatility and ability to continuously capture the listener’s attention. Full review here

Needs more listens:

  1. Autopsy – The Headless Ritual
  2. Church of Misery – Thy Kingdom Scum
  3. Avatarium – Avatarium
  4. Exhale – When Worlds Collide
  5. Glorior Belli – Gators Rumble, Chaos Unfurls
  6. Gorguts – Colored Sands
  7. Convulse – Evil Prevails
  8. Hail of Billets – III: The Rommel Chronicles
  9. Hell – Curse and Chapter
  10. Master – The Witchhunt
  11. Onslaught – VI
  12. Portal – Vexovoid
  13. Quest of Aidance – Misanthropic Propaganda
  14. Summoning – Old Morning’s Dawn
  15. Ulcerate – Vermis
  16. Devourment – Conceived in Sewage
  17. Morbosidad – Muerte de Cristo en Golgota
  18. Pestilence – Obsideo
  19. Krypts – Unending Degradation
  20. Vorum – Poisoned Void


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