2011 was once again a great year for Metal in my opinion. This year was more of a epic Progressive Metal, treasure and gem finding for me there have been so many albums and new bands I have found this year than really any other so far I think I can safely say most metal heads have enjoyed this year because through other metal heads I found some other nice bands but every body was happy until Morbid Angel came along and shit on every ones hopes and dreams hmm. Well You will not find Morbid Angels new hip shit record if you want to call it that on my top 10 no.
1 Paul Wardingham - Assimilate Regenerate
There has not been a day I have not listened to this album, It is a branching out on the style of Scar Symmetry´s Holographic Universe with not stop shred. Overwhelming melodic death metal and atmosphere. When I really lose my self in this album I really do feel in some since colors on what they might feel like I mean shouldn´t epic space metal be like that?
2 Leprous -Bilateral
This was a very emotion provoking album with its different styles of music and mood changes.
One thought that came to mind when I wrote my review for this album was it made me think of if Modest Mouse did a extreme progressive metal album haha and I mean that. I think Frank Zappa were still alive to this day we would have loved this album. The band worked along side Ihsahn on this album so you know there is some extra creative genius in there some where.
3 Mournful Congregation – The Book of Kings
It came as a shock to me that Mournful Congregation put out a new album on the 1st of November it slipped right under my radar. Thankfully through our very own Jon told me about the albums release and I gave it a listen and I was blown away It was a much better come back that their previous record The June Frost. The album is really dark and ambient.
4 Anubis Gate – Anubis Gate
I have only been into this Danish Progressive Metal act for about 6 months now This was a pretty common Melodic Progressive Rock/Metal album but it made my top ten because each songs moody segments where they kind of hit you hard in the heart if you really get into the progressive sine like I do and also Henrik Fevre´s vocals there is something powerful and magical about his vocal tone. This also being my favorite release from them by far.
5 Dystopia Na! - Syklus
I found this band while searching around on youtube just over the fall. It is a really moody Post-Black/Doom Metal album and being really one out of a small hand full of post-Black Metal bands I like there are calm moments of new age atmospheres and melodic acoustic guitars and harsh slowed down black metal this album a great gem for any post-Black Metal fan. Underground bed room Black metal at its best.
6 Andromeda - Manifest Tyranny
Another shock to see I am a big fan of these guys one of the best Progressive Metal bands to inspire me musically and lyrical and this album might be their heaviest album to date and maybe their darkest to the lyrical content which being subjects on the New World Order and all the problems that the world is facing today. One thing I loved is through parts of some of the songs they play clips of world leaders saying some really scary things that really make you think is there really some one pulling the strings in world affairs.
7 Scar Symmetry – The Unseen Empire
Ah yes another anti New World Order album makes the list. I waited day in and day for this album to come out and at first after listening I was kind of disappointed in it but after I did my review and gave it a couple of more listens and it grew on me. The two new singers had improved than the previous release Dark Matter Dimensions but I still think in some ways that album is still a little better than The Unseen Empire, The lyrics to this album when it comes to the subject matter more up front and out there to say the least.
8 Taake - Noregs Vaapen
This one album I have been waiting for this year and Taake always delivers the goods. They still remain to the true Norwegian Black Metal sound though there were some interesting influences on this album with the banjo, the album brought back memories of the old Darkthrone sound. This also was a much better improvement than the previous self titled album I thought. Also with the band only singing in Norwegian I found it interesting that there was a english sound clip of a girl saying I hope we have the coldest winter ever.
9 Shattered Skies – Reanimation
Wow a Djent band made my top 10 list strange huh ? Well to say the least this Djent band Shattered Skies is more Groove Progressive Metal even though some people say that is what Djent is any way but this does not have any break downs and less of that bright Djent tone it is more melodic and colorful and the vocal melodies are just fantastic the production is ok but the musicianship makes up for where the production fails in my opinion. This group has a lot of talent and deserves a little more notice I will be looking forward from more from this band.
10 Galleon – In The Wake Of The Moon
One of my all time favorite if not truly my favorite Progressive Rock band Galleon released this new album on the 26th of November it caught me off guard since their last album was released in 2007 it seemed like they were running out of ideas. When I got this new album I found it to be a small come back to what they have done in the past or at least in the mid point in their carrier. I did like every song on this album Mr. Murphy and In The Wake Of The Moon are my favorite songs by far. I think a little more could have been done with this album but the album is different in its self it has a lot of progressive rock and pop melodies mixed in every but still remains moody.
Runners Up/ Almost made it on my top 10 list.
1 Abnormal Thought Patterns - Abnormal Thought Patterns EP
2 Dream Theater - A Dramatic Turn of Events
3 Devin Townsend Project – Ghost
4 Vintersorg – Jordpuls
5 Opeth – Heritage
What I hope for in 2012:
Well I hope to see some new stuff from Mirrorthrone, up coming music from Christian Älvestam, Soilwork, and I hope to God Winds puts out a new album in 2012 they are much over do for a new release. Who knows what else is in store for in 2012 when it comes to music only time will tell.