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Horns Up Ya Shitters! The Quietus Counts Down The Best Metal Of 2013
Mat Colegate , December 29th, 2013 03:31

Mat Colegate introduces the Quietus list of the best of the year's metal and is aided and abetted by Kim Kelly and Toby Cook

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Despite its excessive quantities of mead inebriation, pagan nature worship and greedy potentates ordering child slaughter, Christmas is probably not the most metal of holidays (that award should probably go to Easter, the one where they took The Good Guy and nailed him to a couple of planks with that gnarly spiky crown on). Nonetheless this season's relative respite does provide an ideal opportunity to gaze on the metallic year gone by and to commemorate all the braincells you lost through over-vigorous headbanging and brazen amplifier worship.

The list below should bring back some memories. Where were you when Shitfucker first broke into your house wearing only cutlery cod pieces and threatening to have sex with your cat? When The Botanist rode past on his vegetal throne swearing revenge against rapacious humanity? When did you first gaze across the skyline of Metropolis with Cult of Luna or have your face pushed into the peat by From The Bogs Of Augishka?

The above mentioned bands give you an idea of the breadth and variety of acts on this year's list and a quick glance at the chart itself will give you an impression of metal in 2013s insane profligacy. This year it seemed that any style or sub-genre of music could be throttled and twisted into fitting the metallic template. Of course plenty of bands stuck to their guns and delivered thrilling testaments to the power of The Old Ways - there will always be room for Darkthrone provided Darkthrone keep putting out albums as good as The Underground Resistance – but the majority of acts below have committed themselves to wandering far stranger paths. From Locrian's embrace of soundtrack atmospherics, to Shining's bezerker avant-jazz ballistics; An Autumn For Crippled Children's billowing clouds of post-MBV guitars or Uncle Acid's post-Manson re-imaginings of flower power pop, the albums on this year's chart have an emotional depth and imaginative breadth that I would challenge you to see in similar lists celebrating any other form of music. Even crust, that most stubbornly starchy of headbanger fuels had its boundaries warped and tested by All Pigs Must Die and Agrimonia, yielding fascinating new shapes in the process. If metal is to be remembered for one thing this year it will be the fearless spirit displayed when a noise still often derided as backward looking and caveman simplistic reared up, dropped the tab and started violently throwing shapes in front of the fire.

It's become something of a cliché when discussing science fiction to state that, no matter how far in the future it is set, it reflects most truthfully on the time in which it was written. Compiling this year's list it struck me that something similar goes for today's metal. That whether it's Celeste's ultimately transcendent wallowing in human failure or Domoyd's blistering chariot ride into the sun; Sacriphyx channelling the ugliness of the great war or Cult Of Fire's sanskrit meditations on eternity, metal's passion and aggression, its commitment to intensity and strength of feeling mean that it can only ever be a sound that is violently (sometimes reluctantly) of the now, and that in all its rage and incoherence it might be the music that best reflects our struggles to exist in a world that often appears to be committing messy suicide as some kind of cosmic joke. One thing is for certain, no matter how shitty the hand you get dealt, nothing feels better than standing in front of a monstrously large speaker and smashing your head up and down like a possessed Victorian child to riffs the size of rocket hangers. In that spirit, I hope you have the very messiest of Christmases and a noisy New Year...

Horns up, ya shitters!

Thanks to Toby Cook and Kim Kelly for aiding with the compilation of this year's list

40. Lycus - Tempest

(20 Buck Spin)

"Funereal tempos, rattling roars, bleak melodic lines, and all-encompassing gloom characterize this hotly anticipated and duly appreciated debut LP from Oakland, CA death/doom maestros Lycus. Tempest lives up to its name, overwhelming its listeners with sheer sonic force and overwhelming, staggering works of beauty." Kim Kelly

39. The Botanist - IV: Mandragora

(The Flenser)

"Botanist is a character channelled (and psychically inhabited) by anonymous San Franciscan musician Otrebor. The former is an eco-terrorist, living in the deserts of California, dwelling on how much better off the ecosystem would be without the rapacious ape known as mankind and is given voice in art by the latter via songs dedicated to flora played (almost entirely) on drums and hammered dulcimer and shrieked in the blood chilling necrotic howls of black metal. Like John Gray’s The Silence Of Animals or James Lovelock’s Gaia Hypothesis being brought to sonic life by music that lies, improbably, somewhere between Lightning Bolt, the Penguin Cafe Orchestra and Leviathan." John Doran

38. Clandestine Blaze - Harmony of Struggle

(Northern Heritage)

"Orthodox black metal is alive and well in Finn Mikko Aspa's kingdom cold, and Harmony of Struggle elegantly illustrates the enduring appeal of raw, abrasive, and ultimately uncompromising extreme music forged in decades past. Clandestine Blaze is an institution, and for good reason." Kim Kelly

37. Fell Voices - Regnum Saturni

(Gilead Media)

"California's Fell Voices have stripped away the complexity of their previous releases and doubled down on the intensity, crafting powerful, dense atmospheric black metal tempered with swaths of ambient, droning feedback, and crystalline melody." Kim Kelly

36. Oozing Wound – Retrash

(Thrill Jockey)

"Oozing Wound are clearly not threatening anyone in the originality heats, but then that's not the point is it? The point, on the evidence of this, the Chicago three-piece's debut album, is to hammer a warm lager down your neck, rip the arms off your denim jacket and leap head first through the local kebab shop's front window, before using the word "dude" a lot in your inevitable remonstrations with the local constabulary. It's fun, in other words, a whole sweaty, stinking ruck of basement smashing fun." Mat Colegate

35. Inquisition - Obscure Verses for the Multiverse

(Season of Mist)

"Underground black metal icons Inquisition never disappoint, especially on this, their sixth dismal oration on Lucifer and cosmic mystery. The duo's trademarks (catchy riffs, hypnotic passages, croaked vocals) are stamped all over these verses, and prove that their formidable songwriting talents grow stronger by the day." Kim Kelly

34. Dark Buddha Rising - Dakhmandal

(Svart)

"A new album from Finland's Dark Buddha Rising that sounds like the sort of thing the members of the Thuggee cult in Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom might record in their downtime, were they to concentrate more on listening to Dopethrone and less on enslaving children and ripping people's hearts out of their chests. From Electric Wizard-esque riffing channelled through the Moog-lined space-cave of UFOmammut, to an occult-indulging take on the tantric meanderings of recent Bong, if you too have been questioning your faith recently then Dakhmandal ought to go some way towards restoring it." Toby Cook

33. Darkthrone – The Underground Resistance

(Peaceville)

"The Underground Resistance is a true metal fan's album made by true metal fans. It's not rip-off or cynical homage, it's love, passion and riffs that make you want to headbang until your retinas detach; it's the epic power metal of 'Valkyrie', it's the 14 minutes of gritty speed metal riffs and King Diamond-esque wails of 'Leave No Cross Unturned', and it fucking slays." Toby Cook

32. Bolzer - Aura

(Iron Bonehead Productions)

"This young Swiss outfit are truly offering something special; their death metal magick references notorious oddballs Voivod, early Morbid Angel, and Gorguts, pulls in the influence of their spiritual forebears Celtic Frost, and arrives at a destination far, far and away from anything else out there. Truly impressive, and devilishly addictive." Kim Kelly

31. OvO – Abisso

(Supernatural Cat)

"In which every record you have ever used the word 'heavy' about is revealed to be about as 'heavy' as a fine china model of a shepherdess. Actually that's probably the wrong word, OvO go out the other side of 'heavy' and end up somewhere closer to 'harrowing'. Stefania Pedretti's soured shriek of a vocal style is the aural equivalent of having a one of the Cenobites from Hellraiser pull itself out of your mouth, while her guitar playing has the ability to uncannily replicate the sound of a naked body being dragged across wet rubber. Of course, all this unpleasantness would amount to nothing if the tracks weren't also shit hot, but thankfully OvO have nothing to fret about. Held together by the ludicrously funky drumming of Bruno Dorella - a dude who can make your neck snap back and forth like a hangman - every track on Abisso is razor sharp, focussed and dedicated to causing maximum distress." Mat Colegate

30. Cosmic Church - Ylistys

(Kuunpalvelus)

"Traditionalist, slow, melodic black metal has always been a point of pride for the Finnish legions, and Cosmic Church do their brethren proud with this sophomore LP. Ylistys is solemn, cold, and relentless, a long trek through snowy woodlands and out into the darkness of night." Kim Kelly

29. All Pigs Must Die - Nothing Violates This Nature

(Southern Lord)

"With the crust revival having gained significant momentum since God Is War landed, and with bands like Agrimonia already starting to tiller the crust boat into ever more expansive and experimental waters, you wouldn't blame APMD for repeating God Is War's formula wholesale for its follow up – and yet what makes Nothing Violates This Nature such a triumph is the fact that, by contrast, it actually represents an even further refinement of that brutal formula, at once featuring five minute plus, doom-hued dirges like 'Of Suffering' that in spirit call to mind the slow-death of cult legends Winter as well as wallowing in the same mire of thunderous desperation as Belgium's Amenra, as well as barely minute long grind assaults such as 'AQIM Siege' and 'Sacred Nothing' that savagely highlight their continued exposure of the evils of organised religion and the insufferable weaknesses of humanity." Toby Cook

28. Grave Miasma - Odori Sepulcrorum

(Sepulchral Voice)

"It took these well-established UK death metal acolytes three long years to craft their first full-length, but Odori Sepulcrorum was worth the wait. Truly dark, arcane metal of death that owes its debt to Morbid Angel, Incantation, and Archgoat, yet never falters into pale mimicry; Plenty of bands attempt this style, but Grave Miasma simply do it best." Kim Kelly

27. Uncle Acid - Mind Control

(Rise Above)

"With their warm yet sparse and, urgh, 'vintage' tone (yeah, I know, I actually feel a bit sick for saying it) and melodies that sound like a deranged take on those of the 1960's mop-haired pop brigade, there's an undeniable accessibility to Mind Control. Except that there isn't, really, it's merely a veneer of accessibility that masks something deeply sinister. As if basing the records concept around the acid fuelled motorcycle expedition of a Charles Manson like cult figure wasn't unsettling enough, somehow the sonic journey through prickly psych/doom via an oddly melodic, Shankar-inspired drone meander and back again make Mind Control a sort of Sgt. Pepper's… for people whose life has become one long and protracted paranoid episode." Toby Cook

26. Cult of Fire - मृत्यु का तापसी अनुध्यान

(Iron Bonehead Productions)

"Proving beyond doubt that, in the Czech Republic at least, you can make a black metal album that is at once more experimental and diverse than both Watain and An Autumn For Crippled Children put together, and yet at the same time sticks so regimentally steadfast to so many of its sonic conventions as to draw wholly warranted comparisons with best of the Norwegian second wave – such as the blinding, symphonic control of Emperor for example. (And, that even if you make things deliberately difficult for your potential audience to actually acquire or discuss your album by writing everything in Sanskrit, it’s brilliance will still shine through)." Toby Cook

25. Shining - One One One

(Indie)

"Look at that cover art – gone are the cold, angular lines and hues of gun metal grey of Black Jazz, and in comes a warm, radiant, solid slab of orange. Gone too are the 11-minute Zappa-like brain-fucking sax-gasms, in come three to four and a half minute, loosely verse-chorus-verse-etc 'songs'. And yet in reality it's not accessible at all – it's fucking mental, you know it's fucking mental, and yet it's captivating, completely engrossing and totally listenable – what it is, is their Black Album. When you're dribbling uncontrollably, bleeding from the ears and waking up wondering why it's next Thursday because of the sax solo in 'The One Inside', and yet humming the riff to 'Paint The Sky Black' instead of going outside, you'll know what I mean." Toby Cook

24. Kverlertak - Meir

(Indie)

"All metallic life is here, from Slayer to GN'R to Mastodon to Converge (whose guitarist Kurt Ballou produces), but there are also nods to more mainstream heavy rockers, both past (Thin Lizzy, Aerosmith, Meat Loaf) and present (Foo Fighters, Queens Of The Stone Age), Rumours-era Fleetwood Mac, Slade and melodic pop-punks NOFX, to name but a few. On paper it's a train wreck, a mess of contrasting ideas and opposing ideologies, but these guys make it work, belting out hoarse-throated Cookie Monster vocals and terrace-style group chants over three-part guitar harmonies, thrashy solos and a rhythm section that turns on a dime from grindcore blast beats to glam rock stomp and back again." Michael Dix

23. Nails – Abandon All Life

(Southern Lord)

"That it simply says 'hatred ad infinitum' on the back cover of Abandon All Life probably ought to tell you something too (it also says 'produced by Kurt Ballou' as well, but of course it does, because apparently he's producing everything awesome at the moment and continuing to make it all sound impossibly more brutal than everything else). I mean look, its 17 minutes of impenetrable and sulphuric crust/grind that still manages to swerve enough times into bleak groove to keep you miserable – what the fuck else do you want? You want blood?" Toby Cook

22. Atlantean Kodex - The White Goddess

(Cruz del Sur)

"These German history buffs gracefully combine traditional heavy metal, power metal, and doom with such care and cleverness that their decades-old Manowar-meets-Bathory blueprints come across as fresh and novel; the soaring, singalong choruses are the last nudge needed to raise one's fist." Kim Kelly

21. Inter Arma - Sky Burial

(Relapse)

"Sky Burial is rich in wide open spaces; the vocals are sparse, the riffs amble, the atmosphere breathes deep. Combining Neurosis' cathartic crashes with blissful Americana, dread doom, and shades of darkest black metal, Richmond's Inter Arma weave a wholly compelling narrative." Kim Kelly

20. Hey Colossus - Cuckoo Live Life Like Cuckoo

(MIE)

"From the agitated, narcotic groove of opener 'Hot Grave' to the driving, almost Gnod-ish monotony of 'How To Tell Time With Jesus' and the krautrock-ish relentlessness and gazing, fuzz heavy Loop like textures of 'English Flesh', this feels like The album we've all been waiting for Hey Colossus to make – laced with lysergic and scattering noise and synth hum, despite the sense of unease it's an utterly captivating 45 minutes." Toby Cook

19. Cult Of Luna - Vertikal

(Indie)

"Conceptually based on Fritz Lang's 1927 expressionist/Sci-Fi masterpiece Metropolis... Vertikal proves that there can be no better band to tackle such a task as the Swedish seven-piece. All the dark melancholy that the group perfected on The Eternal Kingdom is still there but there's stark coldness at the heart of Vertikal that perfectly encapsulates the hard, almost constructivist vision of Lang's cityscape. Nowhere is that more apparent than during the 19 minute epic 'Vicarious Redemption' with its relentlessly pounding, metronomic central riff, which although cold and mechanical also feels depressingly human." Toby Cook

18. Wormlust - The Feral Wisdom

(Demonhood Productions)

"Born of harsh Icelandic winters and self-imposed solitude, Wormlust twists and bends black metal's core truths every which way to fashion a apocalyptic, cyclical strain of dissonant aggression. At times it sounds as though The Feral Wisdom is collapsing into itself in ouroborosian chaos, but inevitably it spirals back up from the void and ensnares its victim once more." Kim Kelly

17. Wolvserpent – Perigaea Antahkarana

(Relapse)

"The power of Perigaea Anthahkarana doesn't simply lie in its desolately slow unfolding, but in the fact that throughout its whole five track and 80 minute running time it manages to marry the painfully slow progress of body hauling itself out of a peat bog with the intensity of a jet engine going off in your face" Mat Colegate

16. Sacriphyx - The Western Front

(Nuclear War Now)

"The first proper full-length from this cult Australian act has finally surfaced, and is every inch the crowning glory that their earlier material hinted towards. Fundamentally melodic death metal, tinged with thrash and threshed with black metal's bite, The Western Front deals with the ugliness and drudgery of war; its lonesome battles are fought in the trenches and in the mud, with nary a banner or bugle in sight." Kim Kelly

15. Shitfucker – Suck Cocks in Hell

(Hells Headbangers)

"You know what you're going to get with these bozos, for sure, but there's a fresh foul smell to these hymns to Satan, skullfucking and smashing shit up that might have something to do with their firm, yet nonetheless surprising melodic chops. Seriously, if you can get the chorus of 'Demonic Rock' or the Dead Boys-esque "OooOOO!"s of 'Sex Dungeon' scrubbed out of your head in time for your mum's visit to your festering, encrusted plate-strewn hole of a flat then you are doing far better than I did." Mat Colegate

14. Yellow Eyes - Hammer of Night

(Sibir Records)

"The second album from this Brooklyn-based collective is rife with serrated melodies and cloudy storms of tremolo; Yellow Eyes dig deep into USBM's fragile psyche and draw out its best qualities. Atmospheric, aggressive, and painfully beautiful." Kim Kelly

13. Watain - The Wild Hunt

(Century Media)

"There’s no other way of putting it, Watain are the most important black metal band on the planet right now, and The Wild Hunt might just be one of the most deceptively progressive and accessible black metal albums ever recorded; the real, almost transcendental majesty of it coming in the shape of ‘They Rode On’, with its warped, Americana like arrangements that proceed into the sort of territory that makes you yearn for Nick Cave and Warren Ellis to re-imagine their soundtrack to The Proposition as a rock concept album." Toby Cook

12. An Autumn For Crippled Children - Try Not To Destroy Everything You Love

(ATMF)

"Not Deafheaven, but the other black-metal-but-not-really-black-metal album that’s wrestled a few of the genres sonic conventions into something as beautifully majestic and serene as it is crushing and anguished. Sharing as much in common with the likes of Jesu, MBV and early Ride as they do with Burzum or WITTR, you’d almost be tempted to term AAFCC ‘black metal-gaze’, or something, but then you’d have to cut out your own tongue." Toby Cook

11. From The Bogs of Aughiska – Roots of this Earth Within My Blood

(Human Jigsaw)

"FTBOA create mostly creeping, endlessly unfurling dark ambient noisescapes; subtle, measured waves of crawling pastoral horror, cloaked in a broadly black metal aura and rooted in the myth and folklore of the pair's native Western Ireland. Although largely built from deeply moving and affecting atmospheric passages that surround the bracing explosion of the title track (which includes some utterly nightmarish vocal strangulations by Gnaw Their Tongues/De Magia Veterum creator Mories) it's 'An Seanchaí', a track built entirely around the engrossing spoken words of near legendary Irish lore-keeper and tale-spinner Eddie Lenihan, that provides the most utterly captivating moments." Toby Cook

10. Domovoyd - Oh Sensibility

(Svart)

"What these Finns have that a lot of their hairy, free loving contemporaries do not is precision. They know exactly how to weight their riffs for maximum impact; when to step back from the chaos and when to push the metal to the floor of the Big Space Rig and roar off into the howling nebula. The result is brassy, tripped out and - especially on the 13-minute-plus 'Effluvial Condenser' and the screeched mantra of 'Lamia' – fucking colossal." Mat Colegate

9. The Ruins of Beverast - Blood Vaults - The Blazing Gospel of Heinrich Kramer

(Ván Records)

"This German entity has risen from the gravemould to tender a glorious collection of extremity refined; black metal and doom lock into a poisonous embrace, bathed in the vapors of the occult and death's cold rattle. Evil, intimidating, and ghoulishly grandiose." Kim Kelly

8. Locrian - Return To Annihilation

(Relapse)

"The point at which the Chicago group, after years of producing an amazingly diverse collection of noise, ambient and drone records, and hegemony shredding splits and collaborations with the likes of Horseback, got themselves a drummer and finally hit on their sound to craft one of the most rewarding alt. metal albums of the year. Owing as much to John Carpenter sound tracks as it does to the brilliantly torturous use of build and warmth so misunderstood by a million post-metal bands; magnificent isn’t the word." Toby Cook

7. Cloud Rat - Moksha

(Halo of Flies)

"This Michigan grindcore trio pulls out all the stops and gives it all they've got with this many-headed hydra of a record; death metal, doom, black metal, crust and post-rock tussle and claw at one another beneath a blanket of vocalist Madison's skin-searing screams and choking grindcore intensity. Worth it for the adventurous and nakedly honest cover of 'The Needle and the Damage Done' alone." Kim Kelly

6. Celeste - Animale(s)

(Denovali)

"On, ON! it pummels, leaving nothing but splintered bones and spat, bloody teeth in its wake. Indeed it becomes apparent during Animale(s) that Celeste have actually toned down the dangerous hints of variety displayed on their last monolithic slab, Morte(s) Nee(s). No more experiments with mournful strings and harrowing vocal samples here, just surging, passionate, balletically agile aggression from the get go." Mat Colegate

5. Agrimonia - Rites of Separation

(Southern Lord)

"Perhaps we should've expected something a bit special from a group containing current and former members of Skitsystem, Martyrdöd and At The Gates, yet while Rites… is littered with all the cider-swilling hallmarks of typical street-crust – the buzzsaw guitars, the utterly visceral vocal delivery and that pervading sense of righteous indignation – Agrimonia have created something just as close in spirit to Neurosis and Opeth as it is to Disfear or Anti Cimex; this is not the sound of your average nihilistic crust barrage. Over its five songs and 60 minute length Rites… courses, contorts and undulates between delicate, emotionally charged ambience and powerfully melancholic moments of melodic death metal equally as often as it descends into unsettling moments of caustic crust – and never more sublimely so that during closer 'Awaiting'. Seriously, it's outstanding." Toby Cook

4. The Blood Of Heroes - The Waking Nightmare

(Ohm Resistance)

"Despite taking their name from the post-apocalyptic Rutger Hauer movie, it's really the dark sonic blood of the city that flows through The Waking Nightmare. It's headphone music for all those bleak night bus journeys you'd rather not have taken, when you're just trying to get home after finishing work and that burning, acidic wave of pity, contempt and blind rage washes over you when confronted by gurning, puking, pissing, feckless morons draped over every seat. It's that feeling of bitter melancholy when you gaze out of the window at the dirty city, hued with the cancerous orange glow of the streetlights, and you can't help but feel that it's perversely beautiful." Toby Cook

3. Carcass - Surgical Steel

(Nuclear Blast)

"If we choose to judge Surgical Steel on whether it captures Heartwork’s audacity, it certainly does that, and ‘Cadaver Pouch Conveyor System’ (one of many choice song titles on the album) emulates ‘Carnal Forge’’s mood swings: frenzied guitar runs; blasting, rhythmic turnarounds and a solo straight out of Steer’s Firebird repertoire, studied and stately over the pulsating backbeat. And again on ‘A Congealed Clot Of Blood’, after it breaks down into a passage reminiscent of the opening of Nile’s ‘The Black Flame’ (and if you want to hear another band that redefined death metal, their Black Seeds Of Vengeance album is for you!), Steer takes it down to a positively doomladen tempo to overlay another classy, slow-hand solo that introduces flavour and taste where most death metallers can only achieve bite and bombast." Dan Franklin

2. Oranssi Pazuzu - Velonielu

(Svart)

"This record makes me want to pull a face like I've just stepped on a piece of Lego in bare feet and beckon towards invisible mind castles on the edge of man's comprehension. It makes me want to sail a skull-prowed longboat into the dreams of sleeping children. It simultaneously sounds like a voyage down the laser Nile and a holiday in a burned-out tree house. Psyched out? You betcha. There's elements of Floyd at their most chillingly numbed, as well as a host of krautrock influences in the marriage of monolithic riffery and paint-peeling electronics, and in vocalist Jun His, they have a devastating weapon, his wounded roar ensuring that despite its many stylistic leaps and contortions the album stays focussed and third-eye blindingly powerful." Mat Colegate

1. The Body - Christs, Redeemers

(Thrill Jockey)

"The Body are heavy - brutally, brutally heavy - but then, I probably don't need to tell you that. No, what makes The Body such a frighteningly impressive and unique prospect is that if you really dive into Christs, Redeemers you realise that their supreme heaviness is actually pretty incidental; they're heavy, but heaviness is not their aim, it's simply the most appropriate and effective method of communicating their abject sense of loathing and hatred, and this, their third LP, is perhaps their most fully realised accomplishment yet." Toby Cook

  1. The Body - Christs, Redeemers
  2. Oranssi Pazuzu - Velonielu
  3. Carcass - Surgical Steel
  4. The Blood Of Heroes - The Waking Nightmare
  5. Agrimonia - Rites of Separation
  6. Celeste - Animale(s)
  7. Cloud Rat - Moksha
  8. Locrian - Return To Annihilation
  9. The Ruins of Beverast - Blood Vaults - The Blazing Gospel of Heinrich Kramer
  10. Domovoyd - Oh Sensibility
  11. From The Bogs of Aughiska – Roots of this Earth Within My Blood
  12. An Autumn For Crippled Children - Try Not To Destroy Everything You Love
  13. Watain - The Wild Hunt
  14. Yellow Eyes - Hammer of Night
  15. Shitfucker – Suck Cocks in Hell
  16. Sacriphyx - The Western Front
  17. Wolvserpent – Perigaea Antahkarana
  18. Wormlust - The Feral Wisdom
  19. Cult Of Luna - Vertikal
  20. Hey Colossus - Cuckoo Live Life Like Cuckoo
  21. Inter Arma - Sky Burial
  22. Atlantean Kodex - The White Goddess
  23. Nails – Abandon All Life
  24. Kverlertak - Meir
  25. Shining - One One One
  26. Cult of Fire - मृत्यु का तापसी अनुध्यान
  27. Uncle Acid - Mind Control
  28. Grave Miasma - Odori Sepulcrorum
  29. All Pigs Must Die - Nothing Violates This Nature
  30. Cosmic Church - Ylistys
  31. OvO – Abisso
  32. Bolzer - Aura
  33. Darkthrone – The Underground Resistance
  34. Dark Buddha Rising - Dakhmandal
  35. Inquisition - Obscure Verses for the Multiverse
  36. Oozing Wound – Retrash
  37. Fell Voices - Regnum Saturni
  38. Clandestine Blaze - Harmony of Struggle
  39. The Botanist - IV: Mandragora
  40. Lycus - Tempest

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Dec 18, 2013 11:04am

Seriously, no Deafheaven? Is it because Pitchfork like it?

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John Doran
Dec 18, 2013 1:33pm

No. It's because we think it's boring.

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BOD
Dec 18, 2013 2:15pm

In reply to :

Given that Kim Kelly writes a fair number of reviews for Pitchfork, that doesn't really add up.

Personally, I think Sunbather is great, as is Blood Drive by ASG, Concrete Sustain by Batillus, Memorial by Russian Circles and Earth Rocker by Clutch, none of which make the list. This in no way invalidates my opinion of these records because it's not my list. It's kind of how these things work.

I'd like to say thanks to Toby for highlighting the Agrimonia record at the time. It's been on heavy rotation ever since and I hope he's back writing with you soon. I'm looking forward to following up on the records I haven't heard on this list.

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Snarf
Dec 18, 2013 2:16pm

In reply to John Doran:

Yeah, thank the lords there is a metal list that doesn't have that overhyped drag of an album. Oh, look it's like metal and it's like Post-Rock. This must be great, right.

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Mark Eglinton
Dec 18, 2013 5:32pm

Surprised to see In Solitude NOT in there somewhere though...

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The Mighty Zot
Dec 18, 2013 8:13pm

They can't include Deafheaven because then they wouldn't be all edgy & cool - too many non-metalheads liked it.

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King Diamond
Dec 19, 2013 5:10am

Pointy hats is a thing now huh?

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Tim Mills
Dec 21, 2013 8:36pm

Thumbs up for Oranssi Pazuzu, Wolvserpent, Grave Miasma and the joyous return of Carcass.
My favourite album of the year, however, would be Castevet's 'Obsian' closely followed by VHOL's assured effort.

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Dec 29, 2013 12:55pm

Too bad Altar of Plagues aren't in there, or maybe the new Kayo Dot, but on the other hand, great to see at least some people still have the sense not to include Deafheaven in their lists.

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Austy
Jan 1, 2014 11:06am

This list is complete bullshit because Jucifer's
no land beyond the Volga is not on it.. easily metal album of the year

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CT3
Jan 2, 2014 2:10pm

Can't believe Gorguts 'Colored Sands' didn't get a mention on your list..

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Daveid P
Jan 3, 2014 2:35pm

another great list laden with stuff to check out,
also my favourite name for a column ever.

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Jim
Jan 6, 2014 11:23am

Well done for not putting Deafheaven in there. 1) Everyone who's going to listen to it has more than likely listened to it already 2)IMHO, it's not THAT good.

Soooo, this Carcass album I've been avoiding because I thought it would be lazy and rubbish. I'm completely in the wrong aren't I?

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