10. Cradle Of Filth – Cryptoriana
A beautifully brutal over the top album inspired by the horror stories of the Victorian era. Cradle of Filth delivers what they’re best at, and for fans this is another jewel in the Filth’s crown. However newcomers symphonic black metal might want to start somewhere else.
9. 36 Crazyfists – Lanterns
Shows off some of the brilliant songwriting we have come to expect from 36 Crazyfists, there is ample heaviness, but also enough catchy hooks and melodies to keep the album fairly accessible. The songs are raw and emotional, and there is also some acoustic parts and grove metal sections which all add up to make it an enduring, interesting album.
8. Steel Panther – Lower The Bar
If anything is ever getting you down then a listen to Steel Panther will quickly remedy that. It has to be admitted that they aren’t really anything more than a parody of all of our favorite Hair metal bands, but there is nothing wrong with a bit of lighthearted fun and a few (ok a lot of) dick jokes. Creatively and musically Lower The Bar is sound, its reassuringly familiar, but doesn’t get boring. Never has the old phrase “don’t fix what ain’t broke” been more true and with the originals like Motley Crue now retired, Steel Panther’s blast from the past is more relevant than ever.
7. Marilyn Manson – Heaven Upside Down
Combining some classic Manson rage with some of the blues from The Pale Emperor, this album takes aim at politics, religion and people in general. Marilyn Manson remains iconic and this album is another great addition to his legacy.
6. Prophets of Rage – Prophets Of Rage
With members from RATM, Cypress Hill and Public enemy there was extremely high expectations for this supergroup and their debut album absolutely surpassed them. A politically charged band when the world most needs them, Prophets Of Rage will be instigating great deal of change in peoples thoughts while simultaneously starting hundreds of mosh pits.
5. Bodycount -Bloodlust
Pissed off political Rap Thrash Metal isn’t to everyone’s taste, but I don’t think Bodycount really care whether you like what they have to say. Addressing Americas issues in every song Bloodlust is as poignant as it is controversial.
4. Sons Of Texas – Forged By Fortitude
Forged By Fortitude showcases a musical intricacy that can be uncommon in this genre, full of the energy and aggression. Sons Of Texas are prime examples of a reliable metal band what they lack in originality they make up for in energy. The Sons are good at what they do – deliver what the fans want and you can’t ask for any more than that. Overall, Forged By Fortitude is a very satisfying album.
3. Fozzy – Judas
WWE Superstar Chris Jericho power-slams the competition by releasing one of the most killer albums of the year! It’s easily their best release to date with every song as catchy as the last. Although if you’re looking for something complex and intricate you might want to give it a miss, but if you like polished, American, catchy Heavy Metal then your looking in the right place.
2. Linkin Park – One More Light
“One More Light” is immensely bittersweet, the listening experience is somewhat tainted by the tragedy of Chester’s death, it leaves the listener almost feeling guilty. But Chester’s visceral emotion is what made us empathize with his music, which in turn helped us through our own dark times. “Numb” was my first favorite song which just goes to show what a brilliant gateway band Linkin Park are, and “One More Light” is only going to build on that. While this album is more pop, I firmly believe it will introduce scores of music lovers to rock, metal and alternative through the band’s back catalogue and that is what will keep Chester’s memory alive. I’m also certain this is not the end for Linkin Park.
1. Stone Sour – Hydrograd
There is a lot here for Stone Sour fans and Hydrograd is an accessible album so it will gain Stone Sour hoards of new fans as well. The genre crossing showcases Stone Sour’s musical ability and you can really tell they had fun making Hydrograd and just did whatever they wanted. Stone Sour certainly haven’t sold out and they are definitely no “sinking ship” and I am thoroughly excited for what’s next!