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12.20.18 The Obligatory Year End AOTY List08.04.18 My All-Time Favourite Albums
07.31.18 Deathcore Albums I Still Listen To And

Deathcore Albums I Still Listen To And Enjoy

I'm mostly over deathcore. It was a fleeting and much maligned genre that had occasional diamonds. Every now and then, though, I do feel nostalgic and go back to some of the albums I enjoyed and some of them do still hold up.
1The Contortionist

The best release the genre has to offer. It's one hell of a musical journey that combines the chugging brutality of deathcore with beautifully atmospheric post-rock sections. To this day I still think this is The Contortionist's best release, even though Language does come close.
2Slice the Cake
Odyssey to the West

Awful verb the noun name aside, this is one of the best examples of "progressive deathcore" along with Exoplanet. It has such a haunting atmosphere that's enhanced by Gareth's spoken word (cheesy as he may sound at times) and it has some of the best songwriting the genre has to offer with killer riffs and amazing lead work.
3Despised Icon
The Ills of Modern Man

Mid-2000s deathcore is a mixed bag, but this is one of the gems. It's chock full of speedy headbangable riffs and the breakdowns, while used somewhat frequently, are tasteful and groovy (think Earth Crisis and Animosity mixed with Suffocation style slams). If there's anything about this album that doesn't quite hold up it's the pig squealing, but it's something I can easily overlook. This and the rest of Despised Icon's work is solid and I'm glad they came back from hiatus.
4Fit for an Autopsy

This and the rest of FFAA's work is among the genre's best. While not overly flashy the musicianship is technical and precise and the songwriting is very focused. It's a banger from front to back.
5Glass Casket
We Are Gathered Here Today...

A solid slab of early deathcore that also features Dustie and Blake who would go on to join BTBAM. It's frenzied and technical with groovy hardcore style breakdowns to boot. Also, the bass is audible throughout and is actually worth paying attention to, which is a rarity in the genre.
6The Red Chord
Fused Together in Revolving Doors

It's debatable whether this band was deathcore as they never really fit in the genre, but the early seeds for the genre were definitely planted by these guys. This album in particular is an uncompromisingly brutal, technical, and frenzied mix of death metal, metalcore, grind, and whatever else that is heavy you can think of, as well as some weird bits like occasional jazz and even elevator music. This is an album chock full of genuinely creative songwriting and is a landmark release for all of death metal and metalcore in general.
Until I Feel Nothing

I'm not a fan of their early work. Their first 2 albums were painfully generic and while Hell Chose Me was a decent album it was trying way too hard to shed their deathcore aesthetic and be accepted by death metal fans. But something changed with this album. The band actually got their shit together and wrote a solid piece of extreme metal with elements of deathcore, tech death, and even black metal. This album is also less watered down by breakdowns and generally goes at a fast pace which is a refreshing change for not just the band, but the genre as a whole. It's not amazing, but it's a really good album that still holds up, and their later work is also worth listening to.
8Thy Art Is Murder
The Adversary

Infinite Death was an awful EP. It was generic deathcore with random bits of noodling wankery and a vocalist that sounded like nails on a chalkboard. By the time CJ joined, however, this band changed for the better. This album is uncompromisingly brutal and technical with a purpose (though some of the noodly bits can be pretty wanky), sometimes even reminding me of the great Lord Worm-era Cryptopsy. It's a shame the band never kept this sound (and that CJ dropped his awesome filthy lows and gutturals for a mid-range shout) as their later work, while decent, really does pale in comparison to this album. If there's anything that doesn't hold up, it's the muddy production, the rather uncreative and repetitive breakdowns, and the fact that all the songs can be kinda samey, but I still enjoy this album quite a lot.

Another debatable inclusion, but I really do think Animosity deserves a mention as they did help establish the genre. This is unrelentingly fast, brutal, and technical with groovy Earth Crisis-style hardcore breakdowns. This along with The Red Chord and Despised Icon is what deathcore should have sounded like.
10All Shall Perish
The Price of Existence

All Shall Perish were never one of my favourite bands in the genre, but they were definitely very consistent and one of the better bands deathcore had to offer. The breakdowns can be frequent and sometimes overused, but they rarely take away from the rest of the music which is chock full of fast and technical riffs and even some insanely good shredding and twin guitar parts. Eddie Hermida's vocals are also some of the best in the genre and it's such a shame ASP are being held to the wayside because of him being in Suicide Silence (and good god what a downgrade that was, especially their most recent album).
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