It was a year mostly controlled by the virus we all know about. I will not say it’s name. In a year where concerts most of the time are impossible. The bands have more time to focus on writing and recording new material. We have had a lot releases these year and it was a difficult process but I succeeded in making my top 10 list of 2021.
We got treated with an EP from Insomnium with four new songs that are filled with melancholic and dark sounds. This EP ‘Argent Moon’ is not as heavy as all their usual music but it somehow doesn’t need the heaviness. Their melancholic sound alone with a lot of acoustic instruments provides a certain dark and depressive atmosphere and sound much better now that the days are shorter and the nights longer. I am however looking forward to the promised more heavy work of these guys for sure!
Hippotraktor with their first full-length called Meridian is easily one of the biggest revelations of this year in the Belgian metal scene. It came out of nowhere but it had has a huge impact. The strength, the power, the music. We hope and we know that we gonna hear a lot of these guys in the future.
I became a fan of Swallow The Sun back in 2009 when they released New Moon, an album that had a huge impact on me because of the fact that they created something special. An album where you could lose your soul, yourself in, where you could drift away and let it all slip away for a little while. Now 12 years later and a couple of albums after New Moon this Moonflowers did just the same thing to me. I lost them back in the day but with this release I found my way back to them again.
Attention: Off The Cross is here. With the release of their EP a couple of years back, it seemed they were on their way to greatness. And then they changed vocalists. But they did everything to make this work. They had their own headline streaming show with a lot of beloved names from the music scene. Their own fest. You couldn’t get around Off The Cross because they we’re everywhere. And on top of that they released their new full-length Enjoy It While It Lasts, which immediately proves that they are still on their way to soaring heights. And I think I am not the only one that will put these guys in their top list of 2021.
When Gojira releases an album you always know they will end up in a lot of people’s end of the year lists. It’s not different this time. Fortitude has the same greatness and complexity like they have in all their albums and still they know to grow and sound fresh in every release.
Sailing Before The Wind is maybe a surprise in the list, but less so for me. It’s a Japanese metalcore band that I discovered and I think they have a lot of potential to get very far. Their EP Immemorial contains only 1 new song while the other four are re-recordings. 2 of them are even from 2011 but that’s not a big deal because I don’t think anyone knows these guys. A hope this EP will be the start of something beautiful.
To The Grave and their new album Epilogue hit me right in the face with their pure brutality. 19 songs resulting in 1 hour of total destruction. Pure chaos. Hold on cause it’s a fast but awesome ride into annihilation.
I was a little scared of Ice Nine Kills‘ new album to be honest. The Silver Scream was a masterpiece and they dared to called this new one The Silver Scream 2! I was afraid they couldn’t live up to the expectations like happened in the case of Metallica with The Unforgiven 2 or Bullet For My Valentine with Tears Don’t Fall Part 2. On their own great songs but they are not better then the original. But Ice Nine Kills did the impossible and made a killer album that somehow even overthrows The Silver Scream. Ladies and gentlemen we present to you: Welcome To Horrorwood – The Silver Scream 2.
Lorna Shore doesn’t had easy years behind them. First they lost their vocalist because he moved on to Chelsea Grin. Then they fired his replacement after recording one album because of allegations of sexual abuse in his name. So the search continued and now they found Will Ramos. This man is a beast. He is all over the place on YouTube and TikTok where you can see his video’s of brutal impossible songs he did in just one take. There are only 3 songs on this EP but it’s enough for the second place looking forward to the future that seems definitely bright. All hail Will Ramos.
Gold goes to Whitechapel they are really almighty. Many of you will disagree but you should know I was a fan since they released their best deathcore album The Somatic Defilement and I evolved with them to this new album Kin. If you didn’t well too bad for you I don’t care. You can hate it all you want. But it doesn’t change my judgement. This is my number 1 so who is with me ?
- Whitechapel – Kin
- Lorna Shore – …And I Return To Nothingness
- Ice Nine Kills – Welcome To Horrorwood
- To The Grave – Epilogue
- Sailing Before The Wind – Immemorial
- Gojira – Fortitude
- Off The Cross – Enjoy It While It Lasts
- Swallow The Sun – Moonflowers
- Hippotraktor – Meridian
- Insomnium – Argent Moon