Monday, December 7, 2020

the Top 10 Punk / Hard-core Albums of 2020

Given the state of 2020 it might be surprising that punk was more atmospheric than angry this year. Not that I am into political punk. Those albums I gave up on after two songs.  These albums have more passion to them.  Ok now that that is out of the way , much like in years past 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 there is only a couple new bands on this list.

The fact these artists 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 punk / hard core albums of 2020

10-Eyes- " Underperformer" -

Danish hard core with a metal sneer to the beating they throw at your ears. Riff wise they have more in common with Converge than not. I can live with metal core if this is what it really is and not some type of  Suicide Silence bullshit.


9-Coma Regalia - "Marked" 

This band from Indiana is more screamo than Eyes . That is not to say they do not have their fair share of hard core to them as they do. They offer more mood and melody than Eyes , which is why they are number 9.


8 Svalbard - "When I Die , Will I get Better?"

The dark hard core out fit from Bristol still has plenty of shoe gaze to cushion the break neck speed of their sonic thrashing. Coma Regalia is pretty melodic this guys take both ends of the spectrum and make them more dynamic. 


7- Infantisland - "Beneath" 

One thing I have noticed so far in this year's top 10 is atmosphere is a bigger factor from hard core. These guys have it , but they are also more chaotic than Svalbard. Sure screamo factors into what these guys do as well but they have their own twisted spin.

6- Spice- "s/t:

 A side project of the members of Ceremony that heavily embraces the indie rock / post hard core sound of the 90s. The singer of Ceremony lends his voice and does some of the best singing  of his career. to this and his singing is much better than it was on the last Ceremony album. It is more emotive. He comes much closer to singing. When it comes to the sound , they nailed it , but also care about the songs.


5- Pigs x7 -" Viscerals"

This band is influenced by sludgey metal , but at the end of the there is more Black Flag than Sabbath in their veins , if it confuses you then you just need to do more drugs. Because these guys are clearly high as hell.

4-Cro-Mags -" In the Beginning" 

Harley is helming this incarnation. He picks up where they left off with "Best Wishes". Even with their shit show drama , the Cro-mags will always be my favorite 80s hard core band.


3- Higher Power - "27 Miles Underwater"

Ok so this album might not be for the zine reading punks with Integrity tattoos. This British band is like the love child of Snapcase and Sunny Day Realestate. It goes places that your normal hard core albums won't. That is because most of your normal hard core albums are boring . These guys bring new life into familiar old sounds.

  2- Metz- " Atlas Vending" 

There is Am Rep quality of the 90s set against a more Stooges like swagger. Lots of attitude and angst but they still really care about the songs. I never really paid a great deal of attention to these guys before , but they have my attention now as this album really grew on me .

1- Coriky-"s/t" 

Not the fastest punk album of the year. The anger is filtered through the wisdom of age. Some might cry out wait this is not punk and to them I would say... shut the fuck up this is Ian Fucking Mckaye...he eternally punk. This album is almost the second coming of Fugazi.

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