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10.20.17 Classical in 2017 05.19.17 Sputnik Discord Chat
04.01.17 Every Ulcerate Song Ranked 03.29.17 Dissonant Tech
01.04.17 Jac's Top 40 of 2016 12.29.16 Sick
11.09.16 Well Then07.11.16 Jac's First Half 2016
07.09.16 2016: Rejects06.15.16 Help: Classical on Sputnik
03.30.16 Jac's 1st Quarter 2016 01.22.16 Users Who Should Be Contribs Pt. 2
01.02.16 Jac's Top 20 of 201511.17.15 Pray For My Ipod
11.06.15 Where Is The Love?07.11.15 Jac's First Half 2015
06.19.15 2015 Metal Recs Pls05.30.15 Best Albums According to RYM Friends
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Jac's Fav Metal Of Death

I've been wanting to do this list for a while and a lot of people have asked me over time so I'm finally rrgoing to pull my finger out and rank my 20 favourite death metal albumz! Just to be clear, this list is rrstrictly for death metal, so no melodeath or progressive metal masquerading as death metal (Opeth, rrCynic) will appear on it, even if I verily enjoy them. I also took a leaf rout of Hyp's book and chose to rlist rjust one album per band. So yeah, enjoy.
Mental Funeral

In a lot of ways, Autopsy are the prototypical OSDM band, which is probably reflected in just how many old school revival acts try to take them
off with questionable results. Mental Funeral is filthy, evil, no-frills death metal with riffs in abundance and Reifert's vocals are sick.
Effigy of The Forgotten

Brutal death metal might carry a bit of a stigma but Effigy of The Forgotten succeeds
in being more brutal than pretty much all of Suffocation's immitators in addition to
being a riff-fest of the highest degree. This album has one of the thickest lower
ends I've ever heard and then of course you have those beautiful Smith beats.
Through the Cervix of Hawaah

Overlooked album/band, these guys make some of the filthiest, grimiest blackened DM you'll ever hear, comparisons to Portal, Impetuous
Ritual and Mitochondrion are common but even then it doesn't really describe the aural sludge that Antediluvian lay upon you. Their whole
discog is littered with gems but their debut full length Through the Cervix of Huaauuueaaheawaaah best exemplifies what they go for as a band.
17Artificial Brain
Labyrinth Constellation

Colin Marston is the best producer in death metal today and this album showcases
perfectly why, reverberant, organic and above all, extremely dynamic. But the
production is really just the icing on the cake because the instrumentation and
song-writing on this is superb and the whole thing sounds like a sci-fi adaptation of
Gorguts, Baring Teeth and Demilich.

Speaking of which, again there really isn't a whole lot that can be said about this
album that hasn't already been said a thousand times before. Antti Boman is
obviously the most unique death metal vocalist of all time and one of the finest in
his own right as well. Furthermore the riffs on this album are probably the most
demented you'll ever hear and anyone who says the only reason to listen to this is
the vox is a fucking idiot.
15Morbus Chron

Recently overtook Labyrinth Constellation as my 2014 AOTY. While it's apparent
right away that this album is of the highest calibre, it takes an unusually long time
to ~grow~ on you. Just like Labyrinth Constellation, this album is extremely
dynamic and the vocals are absolutely maniacal, reminding me of a certain van
Drunen character.

For the longest time I considered Symbolic to be the best Death but Human just
riffs infinitely harder. There's little I can say about this album (and band) that
hasn't been said before, but I will say the combination of Reinert, DiGiorgio,
Masvidal and of course Chuck is of a quality we will probably never see again.
Consvming Impvlse

Some have gotten close, but to this day nobody has been able to match the
psychoticness of Martin van Drunen's vocals on this particular album. There are
points where I'm convinced he's not actually saying the lyrics he's just screaming
uncontrollably and I wouldn't have it any other way. The riffs are also of the
utmost quality and the riff halfway through "Suspended Animation" is a contender
for my favourite metal riff ever.
Piece of Time

One of the very few albums on this list where atmosphere isn't really a deciding
factor and instead its place is warranted simply thanks to the sheer quality of the
riffs. Atheist were the absolute masters of reeling off riff after riff while still
maintaining a sense of direction, and Piece of Time is their crown jewel, though it's
a really close call with Unquestionable Presence.
Transcendence into the Peripheral

The heaviest album I've ever heard. I'm not sure what these guys did to achieve
their sound but I'm thinking that maybe they used bridge cables for guitar strings or
something. It's impossible to overstate just how monolithic this album truly sounds,
and the clean guitars and various "twangs" and "bongs" give this album and eerie
vibe that I sincerely doubt will ever be reproduced.
Close to a World Below

It wasn't really a question of whether Immolation would be on this list but where
they'd fit in. Close to a World Below was the ultimate culmination of their sound,
the number of riffs per song was reduced slightly but that only accentuated them in
a way these guys never quite pulled again. The production actually gives the
impression this was recorded in Hell and then there's Dolan's vox and Hernandez'
drumming which adds to the chaos it's all too damn much!
Black Death Horizon

2013 was such an incredible year for death metal and music in general and this
album stood out as one of the absolute finest. Sindre Solem is the best vocalist in
modern death metal and conveys a feeling of genuine insanity, the riffs have a
strong hardcore punk vibe and rule to no end and so does the drumming. I'm also
not usually a solo man but if the solo in The Distant Sun isn't the best solo of the
decade so far I don't know what is.

Psychostasia isn't a technical marvel, or a genre-bending masterpiece or even
particularly inventive any way, but it just has an intangibly evil atmosphere the
likes of which I've rarely if ever heard before. The vocals are like some kind of false
chord whispering incantation, the riffs, while incredibly infectious just feel "off",
that's the best way I can describe them. Perhaps it's because it's so difficult to
pinpoint what is so demented about this is why it works as well as it does, like an
uncanny valley of metal.
Infernal Warriors of Death

This album does absolutely nothing original, in fact if I didn't know better I'd think it
was straight from 1991, but that's precisely why it's so damn good. Hordes of
bands come along trying to recapture that bare-bones OSDM sound, and if they
don't fail miserably, still don't quite manage to make something as good as their
influences, Blaspherian are an exception. The production on this is as thick as
cement, the vocals are deeper than the Hadal zone, and the riffs are absolutely
Musta Seremonia

One of the best things about Finndeath is you can pick any particular album as your
favourite and no one will argue with you, such was the quality of the scene circa
1990-1996. Although "sounds like it was recorded in a cave" is a pretty common
description in OSDM, Musta Seremonia is one of the few albums to genuinely
deserve it. The riffs and drums resonate with a force that needs to be heard to be
believed, and the vocalist sounds like he gorges on the decaying remains of those
silly enough to enter his quarters.
Onward to Golgotha

The prototypical caverncore album, which also remains the best 22 years later,
every riff on Onward to Golgotha is tainted with a film of grime that no one has
been able to recreate and probably never will. Craig Pillard may be a wanker but I'll
be damned if these aren't some of the best gutterals in existence, and the drums
are fast and complex but also muffled and sonorous and rule really hard. Every
element of this album sounds like it has a purposeful place in a dusty cob web of
human remains and pure evil, a synergetic amalgamation of things that never meant
to see the light of day.
The Erosion of Sanity

Including only one Gorguts album feels wrong because they've released four that
could probably fit happily in my top 20, but Erosion still trumps the rest of their
discog. Although it lacks most of the experimentation of Obscura and From Wisdom,
Erosion still feels just as psychotic and is also much more comprehensible as a
whole. It has probably the hardest riffs in the genre, and also has Luc Lemay's best
vocal performance as well. The instrumentation, while grounded, is infused with a
touch of that quirkiness which would become the focus of their later work, and so it
strikes a balance of sorts.
The Ending Quest

Swedeath is similar to Finndeath in that it's highly atmospheric, but instead of using
filth as a means to an end, the Swedes usually perfered a more ethereal approach,
of which The Ending Quest is the perfect embodiment. Instrumentally, this album
doesn't do anything particularly adventurous, but it has this completely inimitable
eeriness that I've seldom heard in any album in any genre before. The drums are
quiet and relatively basic, the rhythm guitar is crunchy but not overpowering, the
vocals are gutteral but unobtrusive and the leads are thin and reverberant. The
Ending Quest seems build on stylistic paradoxes, in that everything that could
otherwise be seen as a detriment actually helps accentuate an atmosphere that
can be simultaneously endearing as well as unsettling.

Portal are truly one of a kind, although Impetuous Ritual and Grave Upheaval (both
of whom share members with these guys) have similarities, nobody nails the
dimension twisting atmosphere like Portal. This album feels like the soundtrack to a
1940s horror film if the sound track was death metal, and is one of the most unique
and evil sounding experiences the world of metal has to offer. The twisted riffs and
drumming fuse into a wall of sound that deliberately echews dynamics so to be as
punishing as possible. Outre feels utterly claustrophobic as a result, and the small
moments of respite feel like pockets of fresh air in a dank and dimly lit penitentiary
cell. However, Portal are perfectly conscious of human ears' craving for sonic relief,
and make sure to keep these hushes as brief as possible, furthering the torment by
making sure you are aware of what you're missing.
Everything is Fire

Anybody who knows me to even the slightest degree would've seen this coming,
and I've already dedicated some 1100 words to explaining my position on this
album. Everything is Fire is the musical score to the apocalypse, living up to its
name by crafting a soundscape of complete chaos and destruction. Although
considered a tech death album, there is nothing ostentatious about this, there
aren't even any solos. Every single note, drum stroke and textural nuance is as
integral and purposeful as the next. Jamie Saint Merat is my favourite drummer in
death metal, ever so slightly edging Reinert thanks to his uncanny dexterity and
willingness to forgo conventional wisdom in terms of technique. I can't help but feel
that although Jamie deserves every bit of praise he receives, people seem to forget
about Michael Hoggard, who makes all that polytonal guitar magic happen.
The chemistry that they share is completely unvaluable, as all the composition,
writing, editing, mixing and mastering is handled by the two of them, meaning they
can approach an album with a clear vision and execute it without any interference.
Although Vermis and Destroyers are both supreme albums in their own right,
Everything is Fire towers over them and the rest of the death metal scene as a
testament what a handful of musicians can achieve.
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