Friday, December 4, 2020

The Top 10 Mainstream Metal Albums

Time to bang your head. Mainstream metal is either 

A- Middle of the road in it's attempt to appeal to a wider audience 

B- A less extreme sub-genre like Power metal or Thrash that is easier for your average suburban metal to swallow

C- bands that are harder than hard rock , but not what we think of as death or black metal here. 

This list it the best of those kinda of bands, who you are more likely to see in the page of Revolver Magazine.. As with years past I sort through the genre lists before making the overall top ten of the year list. I know many of you are ready for 2020 to be over with. Hate to break it to you but nothing is getting better next year. As far as 2020 goes for the mainstream metal  are no new bands , so this year was more about the tried and true. 

The very fact these bands made it on the list speaks to how great these albums are, so it's not a slight that the number 8 album is above the 9th album, there is something that just gives it an edge that makes me want to listen to it more. After all we can try to look cool and pick the hippest bands for a list, but at the end of the day what makes an album the best is that it makes you want more, you look forward to listening to it again. Sure you can bitch and complain about your favorite band not being on the list. However I listen to five new albums a day so yes I heard your favorite album and was not impressed. No I do not care what you think about it .I do hope you can find your next favorite on this list and have included links to reviews of these albums if you want to check out audio on these guys. Anyways here are the top 10 Mainstream Metal  albums of 2020

10- Pale Divine- " the Consequence of Time" 

This former doom band is not as depressed so they are able to pick up the speed for some Judas Priest like proto thrash. It leans in power metal direction, but while they are no longer in despair they are not as happy as power metal and that is a good thing./

9-  Mr. Bungle -"The Raging Wrath of the Easter Bunny"

They brought Scott Ian and Dave Lombardo on to re-record their demo. With those two what else did we think this was going to be. It's solid thrash. Mike shows he is not too old to get metal as needed. Not what most Bungle fans expected , but they made a great metal record

8-Carach Angren - "Frankensteina Strataemontanus"

No as zany and King Diamond in the theatrics of their song writing as they have been in the past, in fact this album felt more straight ahead metal than what I have heard from them in the past. Oddly enough they were more ambitious than Mr. Bungle , this time around. 

7- Caligula's Horse - "Rise Radiant" 

They were going to be on the prog list, but this album is more straight ahead than most on that list. Yes the are proggy and can shred, but still make a pretty solid effort in writing memorable song. Those hooks gave them the edge over the Angren boys.


6 -Inquisition - "Black Mass For a Mass Grave" 

They might still wear corpse paint , but that does not make this album black metal. The vocals are the same. But they have moved into a mellower and more melodic direction that owes more to the melodic nature of classic metal. The songs flow really well, and this is an album you can leave on and let play. Just because it is not black metal does not mean it doesn't have more balls to it than Caligula's Horse.

5-Enslaved - "Utgard"

They are bringing their Viking side back. This album sounds huge and balances their more black metal beginnings with the more proggy stuff they have been churning out for the past twenty years. They might be pound for pound the most talented black metal band , next to Emperor. This album offers a broader range than Inquisition .


4- Havok -"V"

This album has great energy. I am not normally about thrash revival bands because.. well I was there the first time it was done. Lyrically this album was right on time. Where Enslaved certainly does more with more epic sound, this in your face urgency earned this album more time in my ears.

3- Testament-"Titans of Creation"

These mother fuckers do not sound like they have aged a day. This could have been the album that came after "Low'. They kick out the same brand of thrash they have been killing with since the 80s. The albums in the top 2 spots took more chances with their formulas. But this gives you everything you want from them.

2- Demons & Wizards - "III"

Power metal is normally too happy for me. I do love me some Iced Earth though, and that is half the equation here. It also helps the singer from Blind Guardian is moodier than most of the metal yodelers. These guys also care about writing song, and wrote some good ones here. In fact not just good , but better than most.


 1- Code Orange-"Underneath" 

The Orange Kids have pretty much evolved beyond their hard core past into an angry industrial machine that writes fucking catchy songs. Their vocals continue to improve , and this album captures the mood of 2020. It beat out Demons & Wizards for top spot because ... well it was not even close these guys are at their peak.

No comments:

Post a Comment