A review of some of the best Metal albums released this year
Compiling a list of the best Metal albums of the year can be somewhat of a challenging task: not only are there a decent number of solid options to choose from, but there are many worm-holes to dive into that can distract you from compiling a final list. But even after doing some over-analyzing, there are a handful of bands that made such a strong statement this year that they just couldn’t be ignored.
So - without further ado, here are the five best Metal albums of 2019:
5. Rammstein – Untitled
Released May 17, 2019
Rammstein is one of the most famous and important Metal bands out there with live performances that are unmatched. Their untitled 7th studio album marks a very solid return to form and showcases what they know how to do best: bold and melodic tracks that stay in your head after just one listen - even if they’re singing in a language that you can’t speak!
As you can imagine, this album has all of the traits that you could expect from a solid piece of Rammstein work: rough vocal performances, solid melodies, strong riffs and thought-provoking lyrics that have defined this band throughout the years.
4. Death Angel – Humanicide
Released May 31, 2019
Death Angel has been one of the most underrated Thrash Metal acts of the last thirty years or so. Though they’ve kind of been drifting in and out of popularity for some time, it’s stuff like their 9th studio album, Humanicide, that reminds you to pay attention to what they have to offer.
This album in particular is pure Thrash Metal with a lot of strong riffs and fast-paced tracks. Singer Mark Osegueda spews venom with each lyric that touches on many different social and political issues. But don’t worry: the music is still king here and it’s delivered with a lot of top Thrash Metal quality.
3. Overkill – The Wings of War
Released February 22, 2019
I would have to say that Overkill is not only one of Thrash Metal’s most consistent bands, but perhaps one that captures the very essence of the Metal genre as a whole. Vocalist Bobby Blitz and bassist D.D. Verni have been doing this for more than three decades and they know where their strengths lie: raw, powerful and aggressive Thrash Metal, which is what The Wings of War is.
If you have been listening to this band for years now, then this album is not going to surprise you, but that’s the thing about Overkill: they know what they do best and they deliver with tremendous consistency.
A solid addition to a very consistent discography.
2. Tool – Fear Inoculum
Released August 30, 2019
Tool’s Fear Inoculum has been the most talked about Metal release this year, so how could it not make this review?! The album not only marks a long overdue return by this legendary band, but it has also proven to be a pretty big commercial success (going as far as ranking at the top of the Billboard charts). So as far as 2019 goes, Tool is already one of the biggest winners in the Metal scene.
But when you really think about it, we all kinda knew what we were going to get from Tool: a more mature sound mixed with odd time signatures, lyrics that we would all over-analyze, and song structures that could be described as “weird”. But this band knows how to turn “weird” into dark, interesting, and entertaining songs which ends up making for an entertaining album from start to finish.
Definitely an important drop for 2019’s Metal scene.
1. Devin Townsend – Empath
Released March 29, 2019
Devin Townsend is an incredibly accomplished musician, and throughout his career he continues to prove just how capable he is of adapting to various styles. He’s so adaptive, he’s kind of like a Chameleon. After some careful listening, 2019’s Empath is quite easily one of the best Metal albums that we’ve heard all year.
For this project, Townsend surrounded himself with many talented musicians and crafted a musical masterpiece that is filled with killer songs and great instrumental passages which make for an album that you’re not going to get tired of listening to. Of course the downside to this is that if you’re more of a one-dimensional Metal head, this album may not be for you. If that’s the case – maybe it’s time you open your f*****g mind and give this album a go!
What do you think of this list? Do you agree or disagree with our rankings? Did we miss any albums? Feel free to drop a comment below!
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