2015 ended up being a great year for black and thrash hybrids and variants as well as grindcore. However, I didn’t have a hard time picking the Top 5 as they all made themselves very clear within about a day of review. These are my unambiguous Top 5, in this order. Thanks for reading Fetid Dead and have a good rest of the year!
- Division Speed – Division Speed
Like a bat out of hell, Division Speed delivers some incredibly mean thrash that combines the tempo of old school speed metal the imagery of a fighter pilot looking at the brink of war. Extremely recommended for those interested in no holds barred thrash that refuses to compromise.
- Bonehunter – Evil Triumphs Again
Bonehunter hails from Finland and has delivered an extremely putrid slab of devil metal punk. The riffs are both tight and ferocious, and the album itself keeps an amazing balance between a hedonist rocker and nihilist punk, combined into an amazing slab of metal.
- Captain Cleanoff – Rising Terror
Deconstructive and critically explosive Captain Cleanoff have delivered an incredible release with Rising Terror. It’s an amazing grind powerhouse of an album, combined with enough d-beats and blasts to keep anyone happy, yet topped with memorable and impressive songwriting and an incredible vocal performance by Ben Parson. For a sophomore release, this band is truly incredible.
- Iron Kobra – Might & Magic
Iron Kobra was my favorite traditional metal album this year, and they pulled that off by having extremely well done songs that stuck in your head. They crafted songs you’d like to sing along to while maintaining an atmospheric of fantasy and magic. It’s a healthy mixture between the nerdy sides of traditional metal and the more tough leather side, almost embracing hard rock. A fantastic release all the way from Germany.
- Peasant – Go to Hell
My personal album of the year comes from a small band in Houston, Texas, who combined black metal, traditional heavy metal, and punk for a killer album with plenty of songs that are both listenable and deep. It has an intense evil vibe, sounding like something calling out from a dark dungeon—it easily made its way into my regular rotation. A solid, unique, and addicting release to mark the best of 2015.