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12.16.10 Top 21 Of 2010

Top 21 Of 2010

A simple list of my top 21 albums of 2010
Starve for the Devil

I'm an Arsis fanboy. Period. While the 80's influences weren't exactly my cup of tea I found that the album still had enough bite to keep me coming back.

While i appreciated the departure of Aaron from the band something about this album just didn't grab me in the same way Lost in the Sound did. Still a heavy, anguish-filled beast of a metalcore album though.
Majesty and Decay

Solid New York death metal chock full of their trademark pinch harmonics, Immolation just refuse to put out a bad album.
Scenes from Hell

I had an extremely long time to digest this album and it just seemed to lose its appeal as the year went on and better albums drew my attention away. Still ended up being one of the better albums of 2010, just far from the best.
17In Vain

Mantra probably had two of the best songs of the year in Captivating Solitude and Sombre Fall, Burdened Winter, but the middle tracks failed to live up to the high standards of the opening and closing songs.

Best album art of the year. And the actual album is pretty damn good too.
15Ion Dissonance

I've always had a soft spot for Ion Dissonance and was glad Cursed was more of their signature crazy-and-heavy-as-fuck sound.

Despite the endlessly repetitive riffs and Varg's diminished vocals Belus still had quality riffs and melodies throughout. Far from Burzum's best its also far from his worst.
13Murder Construct
Murder Construct

A deathgrind super group that actually lives up to expectations, this is fast, violent, expertly played death grind that will have you beating holes in your wall.
12The Ocean

I wanted to put this album higher, but I'm not even sure 12th best is justified for this album. Clearly the better of the two albums released this year by the Ocean, the "heavier" Anthropocentric does bring some of the metal influence that was missing on Helio, just not enough to drown out the new vocalist.
11Decrepit Birth

Rapidly becoming a standout in a crowded tech-death scene, Decrepit Birth follow the success of Diminishing Between Worlds with a similarly structured album. That's no cause to complain however as Polarity delivers just as many epic melodies, crazy guitar riffs and blast beats as its predecessor.
Spiral Shadow

Once Tired Climb kicks into full gear it becomes obvious this is a kickass album. While still at its core a sludge album, Kylessa mix in more prog influences this time around and with a newfound energy that easily propels this Spiral Shadow to the front of their discography.
9In Mourning

With Monolith, In Mourning stepped away from the Opeth-clone sound of Shrouded Divine and bring improved instrumentation and songwriting with them. Melodic and crushing, often in the same song, this is a great sophomore album and one of the best this year.

The ex-frontman from Emperor has truly created his masterpiece with After. By far the most progressive album released under the Ihsahn moniker, After adds tremendously improved melodies and lots o saxophone to a metal foundation to create a rather unique progressive vibe.
Marrow of the Spirit

A more black metal focused album than any of their previous efforts, Marrow still maintains that post-metal quality that made Ashes Against the Grain so good. While it doesn't quite stand up to their previous works, Marrow still stands its own as a quality album.
Ecailles De Lune

The prettiest album of 2010, Alcest have created an uplifting, atmospheric masterpiece that dares you not to be drawn in by its beauty. Combining a warm atmosphere with a black metal edge may seem off-putting at first but the end results speak for themselves.
5Amia Venera Landscape
The Long Procession

If this had come out earlier The Long Procession could have easily been AOTY. Throwing a heavy post-metal influence in with spastic, mathy metalcore and great vocals all-around, AVL create a sound totally unique and more than welcome.

Not enough good things can be said about Cloudkicker. Not only was Beacons given away for free, but it was really fucking good. Combining a Meshuggah-esque groove with incredible melodies and superb songwriting Beacons is an engaging and inspiring instrumental listen.

While originally released in Singapore in 2009 the US special edition re-issue came out this year. And frankly I'll use any excuse to bring up Wormrot. Frantic, relentless, and yet still groove-packed Abuse is one of the best deathgrind albums of the decade.
Axioma Ethica Odini

I'll admit i never cared about Enslaved before this album. But the sheer energy that exudes from this album changed that feeling instantaneously. Guitar work with beauty and bite, solid drum work, and excellent vocals easily justify all the praise this album has received. Progressive black metal executed to near perfection
1The Dillinger Escape Plan
Option Paralysis

Option Paralysis, more than any other album this year, refused to go away. The infectious melodies, crushing vocals, and spastic guitar work stayed with me throughout the year, never ceasing to be just as impacting as the first listen. Album of the Year for sure and arguably Dillinger's best.
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