1: Mgła - Exercises in Futility

2015-12-28 04:17:42 by johan

Exercises in Futility Given how much hyperbole there has been around this album it's hard to find something original to say, so I won't really attempt. Enough to say this is hands down album of the year, despite it's late release it's easily my most played album in 2015. I must admit that when I first listened I wasn't sold on it. it took several listens before it had seared my brain enough to make me realize how utterly brilliant it is. I'm struggling to find any flaws here, the production fits it perfectly the instrumentation is spot-on and even the lyrics (which let's be honest can even on the best albums be lacking) are for once well formulated. Nothing short of fantastic album all the way through.



2: Akhlys - The Dreaming I

2015-12-27 05:43:51 by johan

The Dreaming I Coming from one of the minds of Nightbringer one should know what to expect and he does not disappoint, once the intro is over there is no doubt whom we're dealing with here. The complex structures the raging madness and those vocals, yeah those vocals. A year when there is no Nightbringer album this fills that void perfectly. This album got so many spins this year if mp3s could wear out I'm sure they'd all be dead by now. An absolutely amazing album which none should miss.



3: Mephorash - 1557 - Rites Of Nullification

2015-12-26 07:17:00 by johan

1557 - Rites Of Nullification A few years back when Mephorash released a split with Ashencult I wasn't terribly impressed, perhaps they were just overshadowed on that release, however this year they return with not just a full-length but the, single song, Sfaíra Ti̱s Fo̱tiás EP. They don't stray beyond their previously chartered course with a slow to mid pace orthodox black metal, but this time it seems altogether more well put together, songs flow naturally and the fairly crisp production brings all the parts out. Not a bad comeback.



4: Murg - Varg & Björn

2015-12-25 09:37:10 by johan

Varg & Björn Murg are a new find for me, this is their first release as far as I can tell, information about the band is fairly limited. Like many of this years entries on the list this is another simple and raw black metal which just hits the spot. Nothing fancy or spectacularly original, just well written and played. This does seem like a year of nostalgic releases.



5: Porta Nigra - Kaiserschnitt

2015-12-24 05:18:50 by johan

Kaiserschnitt The prize for most metal artwork (on my list at least) might just got to Porta Nigra. I was (probably) alone in not being a huge fan of their previous release Fin De Siècle however I'm starting to believe I perhaps dismissed it too early, after spending some time with their latest album and letting it grow on me I might just have to go back and revisit past sins.


Porta Nigra

6: Hæthen - Shaped By Aeolian Winds

2015-12-23 05:35:39 by johan

Shaped By Aeolian Winds Atmospheric black metal with a touch of 90s Norwegian worship, I've thoroughly enjoyed this album. Nothing really new under the sun, but that isn't necessary when the result is as good as it is. Well crafted and executed this is one of those releases you'll find yourself going back to and often finding small little things you missed last time.



7: Peste Noire - La Chaise-Dyable

2015-12-22 04:27:13 by johan

La Chaise-Dyable Famine and Peste Noire return with another weird album which, at times, falls into the black metal category. It does so often enough for me to like it, but alas like with the previous album I just feel that it's lacking that little extra he had on L'ordure ā l'état pur, the madness on that is what pushed it over the top, here it's unfortunately just good, where it could have been great.


Peste Noire

8: Sangus - Pedicabo Mundi

2015-12-21 04:17:30 by johan

Pedicabo Mundi Violent thrashy black metal, with four songs clocking in at around 11 minutes this hits the spot when you want something quick and nasty, as they never really lay off the tempo, pretty much starts out at full speed and that's where they keep it for the duration. It'll be interesting when they release a full length to see if they can write material which will hold your attention for the full duration or if an EP is about as much as can be tolerated. I look forward to finding out.



9: Tyranny - Aeons in Tectonic Interment

2015-12-20 06:02:58 by johan

Aeons in Tectonic Interment Living up to 2005's Tides of Awakening was always going to be a tall order, and while they certainly released a good album it just doesn't quite reach all the way. The absolutely crushing sound just isn't there, and perhaps it's the shorter songs or perhaps that ten years of waiting just built up too many expectations. by no means a bad album, just a tad disappointing.



10: Bell Witch - Four Phantoms

2015-12-19 07:20:37 by johan

Four Phantoms Bell Witch would probably not have made this years list had I not seem them live recently. They were very, very good live and I was rightly impressed. This album, is not quite as good as they are live, the biggest problem is that there is just way too much clean singing on some parts and it distracts from an otherwise musically quite good album. If they can tone back on that for the next release I think they'll have a real winner on their hands.


Bell Witch