Compiled by Brandon Ringo
2013 is a year that I definitely believe was a banner year for rock n’ roll and heavy metal. The most dominant genre of the year without a doubt was death metal. Bands like Suffocation, Immolation, Gorguts and Carcass proudly waved the flag for old school death metal, while younger bands like Vastum, Aevangelist, Valdur and Grave Miasma showed just how sick the genre can be when taken to serious extremes. Another interesting trend I noticed from this year is me liking bands that I previously could care less about. Specifically, I found myself loving the new Toxic Holocaust and In Solitude albums more than I thought I would, as well as the new albums from Skeletonwitch and Watain.
As far as this list itself goes, I know there’s a ton of stuff I probably left off, but I can only include the stuff I’ve actually heard that stood out to me as something worth delving further into. Also, there’s a few albums on here that aren’t really considered metal, but were heavy and awesome enough to include.
100. Boudain – Boudain EP
Southern-fried doomy hard rock in the vein of Clutch and Kyuss. Incredibly heavy and makes the perfect soundtrack to a day of drinking beer in a kiddie pool in the scorching heat.
99. Kalmah – Seventh Swamphony
I’m a sucker for melodic death metal and very few bands do it as well as these guys.
98. Gigan – Multi-Dimensional Fractal Sorcery And Super Science
Completely ridiculous and mindnumbingly chaotic sci-fi death metal.
97. Weekend Nachos – Still
Weekend Nachos isn’t the kind of band that’s going to change or progress their sound much. If you enjoy getting kicked in the teeth by seething, violent metallica hardcore, this is right up your alley.
96. Palms – Palms
Have you ever wondered what Isis would sound like if they had Chino Moreno of Deftones on vocals instead of Aaron Turner and maybe they got a bit less heavy? It’s this. My only problem with this album is that I get sleepy every time I hear it.
95. Queens of the Stone Age – …Like Clockwork
Admittedly, I was a little disappointed by this album at first. I think the main reason is because it had been so hyped up as the best album of the year and instead comes off as slow and somber instead of dancey and catchy and incredibly awesome. However, even a mediocre album by QOTSA is better than all of the bands that have tried to rip them off over the last few years.
94. Mutoid Man – Helium Head
Think of this band as a mixture of newer Cave In with Every Time I Die, Converge, whiskey and blisteringly fast rock n’ roll shredding.
93. Valdur – At War With
Albums like this that come out super late in the year are always hell on a top albums of the year list like this one. The reason is because they are so undeniably good that upon hearing their unyieldingly heavy style of blackened death metal, it’s difficult not to include them on my list.
92. Living Sacrifice – The Ghost Thief
Living Sacrifice have made a name for themselves throughout the years as a legend in the christian metal scene and they show why with Ghost Thief. Since reforming they have taken their signature style of grooving thrash metal and added in an even heavier crunch.
91. Rob Zombie – Venomous Rat Regeneration Vendor
If you don’t like Rob Zombie, this record certainly won’t convert you. However, this record is one of his best in years with all the catchy and groovy elements that made his early post-White Zombie stuff awesome.
90. Finntroll – Blodsvept
I’m not sure if you’d consider this pagan metal or power metal or what, but I do know that I love their use of non-traditional instruments in metal. The title track of this album is one of my favorite metal songs of the year, without question.
89. Stomach Earth – Stomach Earth
Wanna know what this album sounds like? Think of the most frightening nightmare you’ve ever had. Think about the worst day of your entire life. Picture living a day that mixes the two together and it’s likely this hellish piece of unfaltering funeral doom would serve as the soundtrack to it.
88. Deeds Of Flesh – Portals Of Canaan
Yet another fantastic, brutal technical death metal album from an old school legend.
87. Black Dahlia Murder – Everblack
You may hear this band referred to as metalcore still, but by no means is that the case anymore. At this point in time, BDM have turned into a super legit death metal band with a hell of a bite.
86. Suidakra – Eternal Defiance
A lot of people might refer to Suidakra as celtic metal, but the only description that does them justic is amazingly catchy, melodic death metal.
85. Kadavar – Abra Kadavar
This band sounds like they’re about 40 years old. They mix psychedelic elements of early Hawkwind with the gut-punch of Blue Cheer. This album doesn’t sound very modern, but it does sound awesome.
84. Scorpion Child – Scorpion Child
Very retro sounding rock n’ roll. Their vocalist reminds me a lot of Robert Plant a lot of times. Definitely one of the more interesting and unique old school rock n’ roll bands coming up these days.
83. All Pigs Must Die – Nothing Violates This Nature
APMD has been making consistenly good albums for a long time now and his ugly, abrasive monster is just another gem.
82. Evile – Skull
Very heavy, accessible thrash metal in the vein of Testament. A lot of cool solo’s and very catchy choruses make this a pretty fun album even if a lot of their tricks have been used up already.
81. Broken Hope – Omen Of Disease
In this list, I refer to a lot of music as violent, but Broken Hope have to be one of the best examples of what classifies a metal band as violent. Their riffs are absolutely unforgiving and don’t stop churning from the minute it the needle drops until the minute it lifts and your entire home is covered in blood and gore.
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