It appears that everyone else is compiling their Top 10 or Top 15 or Top 287 albums of 2012, so I guess if I’m keeping a written journal/account of my metal opinions, that it would only make sense that I throw my list out there too. Unlike my 2011 list, these are actually ranked with brief commentary in italics.
10.) Paradise Lost “Tragic Idol” If you’re going to recycle an old album, “Draconian Times” is probably one of the best ones I could think of.
9.) Incantation “Vanquish in Vengeance” It’s fucking Incantation.
8.) Ihsahn “Emerita” A seemless blending of everything Ihsahn has composed, at once ambitious and listenable while covering a wide range of emotions. Nerd metal ahoy.
7.) Gorod “A Perfect Absolution” Atheist, Cynic, Gorguts worship while still maintaining enough brutality to actually be considered death metal.
6.) Daylight Dies “A Frail Becoming” Incredible guitar harmonies; at this point its time to admit they’ve surpassed the Euros they emulate.
5.) Panopticon “Kentucky” Fucking bluegrass? Doesn’t matter, the black metal tracks invoke the very best of Agalloch.
4.) Sophicide “Perdition of the Sublime” A hint of Arsis-like technical doodle doodle but with songwriting that I compare most to Anata. Anytime a band gets compared to Anata, they better be awesome.
3.) Plague Widow “Plague Widow” 9 tracks, 17 or so minutes. Something between deathgrind and Immolation, despite its brevity, or maybe because of it, I’m left wanting more. Utterly brutal as fuck.
2.) Dying Fetus “Reign Supreme” Slam after slam, tons of massive memorable riffs. Probably my most listened to album of 2012.
1.) Pallbearer “Sorrow and Extinction” Huge droning riffs, heavy both in sonic heft and emotion, sorrow filled vocals that invoke defeat and despair. Pallbearer managed to draw influence from the usual doom metal suspects like Saint Vitus and Candlemass to create something that will likely hold up in years to come, which is the mark of metal greatness.