2014 is coming to an end, so it’s time for My Top 10 Albums of 2014!
1) From Parts Unknown by Every Time I Die
Coming in first place is this killer album; it combines everything I love in about an Every Time I Die album. It’s fast, aggressive and just chaotic. The bands southern metal, punk influenced hardcore sound tears its way through each of the 12 songs and is unrelenting till the very end. From Parts Unknown scored a perfect 10/10 when I reviewed it earlier this year and my views have not changed one bit, I predicted it would be one of the best albums of the year as these guys hit the nail on the head with this album! Go check it out right now!
2) Lost Forever / / Lost Together by Architects
Architects sixth and, in my opinion, best album. It is clear that the Brighton post-hardcore/metalcore band have set new high standards for themselves with Lost Forever / / Lost Together winning best album at the Kerrang! Awards 2014 and it is easy to see why. The bands use of complex riffs and melodic choruses have brought a new catchiness to their unique sound. Not only are the instruments nigh on perfect but Sam Carter’s vocals tear through the album like a riot, the sheer amount of “bleh’s” is incredible.
3) Shadowed by Vultures by POLAR.
The lads of POLAR got their second album spot on. Shadowed by Vultures is superbly structured with songs just flowing into each other, including a lullaby like song featuring Ellie Price, making the album worth listening to in its entirety. The songs themselves show just why these guys are smashing the British hardcore scene and invading the European one. The combination of immersive riffs, catchy vocals and pounding breakdowns give Shadowed by Vultures a pulse racing sound that keeps you going from track one till track eleven.
4) Nachash by Krokodil
When I heard that Krokodil consisted of members from Gallows and Sikth, I was eager to hear what they had to offer. The result is the debut album Nachash, a sludge heavy riff fest! This album is full to the brim with meaty riffs, hefty vocals, machine gun drumming and some experimental, Mastodon sounding melodies to create one of the more interesting metal releases of 2014. Simon Neil from Biffy Clyro also lends his epic voice for the song Sun Riders that finishes the more experimental second half of the album off in style. The DIY tone that the album has also gives it an unclean raw sound that makes Krokodil’s debut album stand out.
5) All You Can Eat by Steel Panther
Lock up your daughters and wives, Steel Panther are on the prowl with their latest album All You Can Eat and its over loaded with all those Steel Panther antics we love so much. Drug abuse, vulgar sex and dick jokes all make a welcome return to the bands third album. You’ll piss yourself laughing at their 80s metal parody, but underneath all this comic value is impressive and talent musicians. The music is well written and captures the feel of the 80s perfectly, with huge sweeping solos, absurd lyrics and off course huge hair! All You Can Eat is my feel good album of the year appealing to my light hearted side and is a blast to drink to.
6) Once More ‘Round The Sun by Mastodon
I didn’t think they could keep up this winning strike for much longer, but they have proven me wrong again. Once More ‘Round The Sun is another cracking Mastodon album. Using the characteristics of every metal subgenre under the sun they have crafted another unique album that can be added to the obscure Mastodon sound. Ranging from sludge to groove there is plenty of little touches to this album that keep the band from falling into repetitive undistinguished sound. Although there is a slight lack of riffage here, the hooks, fillers and thunderous vocals are all still present to create that Mastodon sound that is both familiar and refreshing.
7) The Sorrow And The Sound by Feed The Rhino
Groovy isn’t always used to describe a hardcore band, but it is the best way describe Feed The Rhino’s third album. The riffs come at you thick and fast throughout the twelve songs, they’re chaotic and aggressive but at the same time groove heavy. Matching these riffs is the growly vocals that run side by side with the instruments in every aspect. Bridging these riffs are melodic crowd chanted choruses that are brilliant at reeling you in for a sing along as well as newly equipped clean vocals that make the impact of the heaviness that little bit more special. If you like your hardcore mixed in with plenty of metal, punk and rock ‘n’ roll influences then this album should be a part of your collection.
8) Cult for the Haggard Youth by Dead Harts
Angry doesn’t really cut it when describing this dark fuelled hardcore album. Cult for the Haggard Youth contains some of the most mosh ready riffs and breakdowns to come from 2104. This album is relentlessly aggressive and should come with a warning to prevent listeners head banging themselves unconscious. Dead Harts have pumped frantic guitar riffs, harsh vocals, blasting drums and crushing bass lines into every song, from Pit Talk all the way to Nosebleed, to earn its rightful place as one of the best releases of 2014.
9) Die Knowing by Comeback Kid
It is becoming increasingly hard for hardcore bands to bring something new to the table, so why not return to the old-school? That’s what Comeback Kid did for their album Die Knowing. The melodic hardcorers have smelted together their previous sound with metal and punk to bring out the best in these quick, aggressive songs. What makes this stand out from their other albums is the introduction of more burly breakdowns; any early New York hardcore band would have found them to be mosh worthy.
10) The World Is My Enemy Now by Upon A Burning Body
This album did for me what Sempiternal did for Bring Me The Horizon, abandoning the generic sound of previous albums to produce an incredible one. Even though their previous albums are alright, The World Is My Enemy Now, is leaps and bounds ahead. The riffs are more metal inspired, with a slight southern tint to them as they stray from the path of deathcore, this is same for the breakdowns. I like a good breakdown as much as the next guy, but sometimes they can be thrown into a song for the sake of having a breakdown. Not here, each breakdown brings impact to the songs.
This was a tough list to comprise as there were countless great albums in 2014 so here are some Honourable Mentions:
Dear Youth by The Ghost Inside
War Eternal by Arch Enemy
Black Flame by Ease Of Disgust
Intolerance by Throwdown
Sun Eater by Job For A Cowboy
Heavy Hearts by For The Fallen Dreams
.5: The Gray Chapter by Slipknot
Pale Communion by Opeth
Hardcore Lives by Madball
Calloused by Gideon
Still Life Moving Fast by Empress AD
Killer Be Killed by Killer Be Killed
The Beauty Of Destruction by Devil You Know
Sunset On The Golden Age by Alestorm
Ghost Empire by Caliban
Regicide by Hour Of Penance