We have come up with our selection for the best releases of 2016. If your favourite album that absolutely deserves to be on this top in every other media channel isn’t here, you are extremely welcome to complain about it in the comments. Also, we don’t hear everything, this is our teams personal selection, the works aren’t even listed with numbers, we love em all in no particular order so let’s get started with…
Al Jourgensen’s Surgical Meth Machine – This feels exactly like taking meth surgically through a machine, a madly intense frantic noise spewer that makes your body and soul twitch really fast. Uncle Al has still got it and he’s not shy about prancing it around and doing the spin for all the young boys out there. We highly recommend this experience but only if your speakers are very powerful and packed with a volume gauge that goes over 11.
Xenomorphic Contamination – Colonized from the inside – If the Alien movie saga had a brutal death metal soundtrack it had to be this band, this was their first full length released in early 2016, this album has the most evil riffs we’ve ever heard and they makes us want to pull our hair out just from the insanity it brings, it’s almost psychological torture.
Devin Townsend – Transcendence – What can we say about Devy’s music that hasn’t already been said, his music is beautiful and amazingly conceived in several ways, we love it. Transcendence is no exception. It is very likely that every year we will include any Devin Townsend releases in our best of the year, but that is not our fault, its Devin’s fault.
Nails – You Will Never be One of Us– Imagine yourself very relaxed in some calm spot. Suddenly, you get a major slap right in your face, with the same brutality as in this album. The result? Either you act like a pussy and fall to the ground and cry, or you get up and fight back. Or you can just headbang and alienate yourself from the true meaning of this album – which is another very acceptable option. Dark, depressive, fast, brutal. Can you even keep your shit together?
Mars Red Sky – Apex III (Praise for the Burning Soul)– Heavy, fuzzy, trippy and mellow. All these are perfectly combined in Mars Red Sky’s new release. Powerful drums that vibrate your soul, an intense bass line, a guitar that caresses your spirit and an amazing mysterious voice that kind of sounds like Ghost if they were trying to sell you weed instead of Satan.
Ghoul – Dungeon Bastards – A comic book drenched in thrash metal, deep fried in a grind/death sauce that is actually a music record and not a comic book at all (it still is a little bit though). Creepsylvania may be a rotting shithole, but the local squatters at the graveyard sure know how to make some brutal music. It has been some years since Transmission Zero, but the wait was worth it and their comeback totally rips your asshole in two.
Perturbator – The Uncanny Valley – This amazing masterpiece was highly anticipated and years after its release, it will likely be held as one of the best and most defining classics of a genre that has started to emerge in recent years, a genre we are falling madly in love with, synthwave. The Uncanny Valley is a cyberpunk noir journey into the android filthy streets of the not so distant future, it’s the kind of music that can make a machine feel as well as wanting to tell all the other machines about it. Also, Greta Link’s voice is all kinds of beautiful and she fits right in, just in case she reads this, all of us here wish we could hear more of it.
Unfathomable ruination – Finitude – This album sounds evil as fuck, mixing d-beats with endless blasts and haunting guitar solos, the perfect example of modern brutal death metal, the British Unfathomable Ruination rape our ears from start to finish without mercy because mercy is for pussies and Christians.
Mammoth Weed Wizard Bastard –Y Proffwyd Dwyll – We have to be honest with you guys, this one we heard just now as we were working on our top 20 best of 2016. Our love for it is so recent that we can’t even remember the name of the album very well, so thank you metal archives. Y Proffwyd Dwyll has an intense and satisfying Doom feel coupled with a haunting voice that charms us to our doom, so it goes great with the rest of the music. The album is more diverse than it might seem at first, it’s a great listen if you want to lay back, light a joint and just sit there listening a whole album.
Michael Arthur Holloway -Guilt Noir – The debut record of a man who does a lot of soundtracks for games and movies. A multi-instrumentalist ejaculation, a mysterious jazzy electronic journey that can be groovy and bleak at the same time. We highly recommend you leave this instrumental beauty playing while you smoke a joint, down a wide glass of whiskey and reflect upon your life.
Vektor – Terminal Redux – Look at that awesome cover, that derelict ship represents your brain after you’ve listened to this technical thrash comeback that Vektor have unleashed. We didn’t expect to hear so many varied perspectives in a thrash record but Vektor enjoyed proving us and the world terminally wrong.
Anaal Nathrakh – The Whole of The Law – This album eats your face and shits it out at ridiculous speed towards the fan. It’s so fast that the fan overheats and explodes, shooting molten metal shrapnel covered in faeces towards the open wounds of where your face used to be. This masterpiece holds all the sanity gnawing elements that make us love Anaal Nathrakh and we couldn’t not include it in our list.
Khonsu – The Xun Protectorate – An intense sci-fi journey infused with black metal and electronic elements, a truly unique experience that takes us into the future where the distant memory of life on earth is only a dream. Their debut work was amazing, this one goes even further into the depths of space, bringing a new and much welcome flavour to the scene. The album is so good we want to buy it and look at every inch of it, read the lyrics and see the story of the Xun Protectorate playing inside our heads as the album plays within our ears.
Wormrot – Voices – What is that sound I hear? Is that Abuse, the grind masterpiece from Wormrot? Member Abuse from Wormrot? We Member. Oh wait, it’s not, it’s actually a brand new 23 minutes and 14 seconds (because its grindcore so 14 seconds could be a whole split abum) of uninterrupted delicious grind sauce by Wormrot that I can feel clawing at the skin inside my eardrums. So delicious, we recommend you have some of this sauce.
Tonebox – Nocturn – It’s been a long time since we’ve written about post-retro intergalactic seawave soundings, but Tonebox made us wander through deep, wet black holes ‘till we got our minds thrown off faster than light. There’s a story in all of this, born from element zero and recycled into some mass effect that gave us the need for some nightmarish daydream tale. As Trevor achieved a somewhat perfected way in reusing samples, even if he doesn’t exist, Tonebox’s lighter perspective, due to the spacey feeling, is a must for us. Extinguish your torches, sit on your throne, light up the peace rocket, and let your mind voyage for 55:55 through the 5tory of the 5ecret 5tar 5ystem…
Darkthrone – Artic Thunder – Sometimes, all you need is the good old sound of heavy metal, but not quite as mild as it was in the beginning, maybe throw some black flavours into the mix. Artic Thunder is a perfect blend of classic heavy metal with a black metal aftertaste, it’s living proof that Darkthrone can do whatever the fuck they want because it will probably work out pretty well and because they are Darkthrone, so they don’t give two shits about your opinions and we find that very beautiful.
AlcoolClub – Rap Proibido – Because the portuguese underground is not all about metal, it’s our favourite national release this year and no better album to be on the top albums of the year on Drunk on Drugs than an album about being drunk on drugs. An album purely made by self-glorifying dealers about their nocturnal endeavours about drinking, smoking fat blunts and fucking whores.
Conan – Revengeance – The best way to transport your mind and balls to the desolate fields of the Hyborian Age, Conan’s Revengeance might as well been called ‘The Barbarian’, even more so than ‘Blood Eagle’. A brutally brilliant cacophony of crushing, brain drilling riffs and stomping drums, it could very well be the soundtrack to a clash of titans of gargantuan proportions. Now if only they had thrown a song titled ‘The Riddle of Steel’ in there somewhere…
Xasthur – Holding Yourself Hostage – It looks into your soul, it drags you out of whatever little happy place you have found and pulls you to the bottom of your self-consciousness. The black metal act Xasthur is now reborn with a new, even more depressing sound that constantly reminds you of the shit that haunts you, it awakens your inner demons and drags you through shit, embers and mud.
Pryapisme – Repump the Pectine – This is what happens when you put all the other albums inside a blender, turn it on the maximum speed and then let a bunch of psychotic alley cats play with the buttons. A rollercoaster of pure fun and madness with real pieces of pizza inside, keep listening and you will be surprised at how much random crazy shit these guys have to offer. Technically this EP is just a re-arrangement of the Pump Up the Pectine EP from 2005 but we can’t find that shit anywhere, plus, while we wait for their next album to come out we can blast this to confuse the neighbours and get boners.
That’s all we have for 2016, we honestly couldn’t care less if you agree or not, if you learned something new with our top 20, we are happy to provide fresh nourishment for your ears. Remember to show your support by sharing the shit out of our stuff and liking our facebook page. Here is everyone on the team who contributed to our top 20.