These lists seem to become more difficult to make with every year. 2015 had a lot of ups and downs in the metal world but one thing is for certain – it was a great year for music! I somehow managed to narrow down a large list down to 61 entries and further narrow it down to a top 20 albums, 11 EPs, and a boat load of runner ups in the buffet. So without further adieu, here are my favorite metal / prog / hardcore type releases from the year of our lorde 2015… Though the lorde may not approve. Bon appétit.
Top 20 Albums
20. Frontierer (dudes from Sectioned) – Orange Mathematics
Nothing can prepare you for this madness.
19. Iron Maiden – The Book of Souls
Every year Eddie arrives is a better year.
18. Gods Of Eden – Self-Titled
Left hook towards the end of 2015. Well played, Gods of Eden.
17. MISÞYRMING – Söngvar Elds Og Óreiðu
Exhilarating, terrifying, original Black Metal right here.
16. Nightwish – Endless Forms Most Beautiful
They’re back with their new and possibly best singer. This was an ambitious release gone right.
15. Gruesome – Savage Land
The best Death tribute band of all time.
14. Rivers Of Nihil – Monarchy
Stronger than ever before.
13. MESTIS (Javier from Animals As Leaders) – Polysemy
The whale song is strong in this one.
12. Our Oceans (aka Exivious) – Self-Titled
Oh no. Emotions.
11. Veil Of Maya – Matriarch
So catchy it’s contagious.
10. WRVTH (formerly Wrath of Vesuvius) – Self-Titled
Damn! Looks like the name change was appropriate.
9. Gorod – A Maze Of Recycled Creeds
Gorod does things with music that can’t be put into words.
8. Jakub Zytecki (from Disperse) – Wishful Lotus Proof
This man is a genius with a guitar in his hands. It shows.
7. Cattle Decapitation – The Anthropocene Extinction
Absolutely brilliant and damn near relentless.
6. TesseracT – Polaris
God level groooooovin’. Oh, and Dan Tompkins is back.
5. August Burns Red – Found in Far Away Places
These are The Circle Pit’s local champs. Nothing but love for ABR.
4. Periphery – Juggernaut: Alpha & Omega
The infamous Juggernaut finally set foot. It was heard in kind.
3. David Maxim Micic – EGO & ECO
These are what emotions sound like.
2. Agent Fresco – Destrier
One of the most creative bands I can think of. Period.
1. Alkaloid – The Malkuth Grimoire
Some of my favorite musicians got together and made an albun. Roll Necrophagist, Obscura, Aborted, Spawn of Possession and Blotted Science up and smoke it. They didn’t lie when they claimed to be the world’s “most extreme prog metal band!”
Top 11 EPs
11. Priest – Rust And Grief
Easily one of the most intense releases in recent history.
10. Humality – Now Here
The sequel to Nowhere.
9. Nott – Abyssal
Downtempo done right.
8. The Sun Explodes – The Calm, The Storm
Oh no. More emotions.
7. Dark Matter Secret – Xenoform
Keep it secret. Keep it safe. Fretless Bass.
6. Dora The Destroyer – The Singularity
Psst. Emotions. Arguably some of the best guitar work from last year.
5. Omega District – The Deconstruction of a Universe
Easily among the most pleasant surprises of 2015. Looking forward to what 2016 holds for Omega District.
4. Cryptopsy – The Book of Suffering- Tome 1
Fuck a duck. This is too wicked for mortal man. Cryptopsy are back!
3. SikTh – Opacities
SikTh are back!? SikTh are back!
2. Plini – The End Of Everything
Plini is like listening to Chicken Noodle Soup. That’s meant in the best way possible.
1. Haunted Shores – Viscera
I’ve waited years for this moment.
Runner Up Music Buffet in No Particular Order
Bedowyn – Blood of the Fall
Nile – What Should Not Be Unearthed
Sound Struggle – Rise
Blind Guardian – Beyond the Red Mirror
Good Tiger – A Head Full of Moonlight
Vials Of Wrath – Days Without Names
Between the Buried and Me – Coma Ecliptic
Native Construct – Quiet World
Virial – Organic Universe
Bell Witch – Four Phantoms
A Trust Unclean – Reality Relinquished
The Devils Of Loudun – Entering Oblivion
Pomegranate Tiger – Boundless
Tengger Cavalry – Nature Ganganbaigal: The Mantra
Skinless – Only The Ruthless Remain
Sigma Project – Reality Field
Haamoja – Natural Evolution
No Consequence – Vimana
Leprous – The Congregation
Nylithia – Hyperthrash
CHON – Grow
Venom – From the Very Depths
Lamb of God – VII: Sturm und Drang
Sirens – Surge
Vector Of Underground – Original
Monasteries – The Empty Black
Human Improvement Process – Enemies Of The Sun
The Black Dahlia Murder – Abysmal
Reflections – The Color Clear
Born Of Osiris – Soul Sphere