Welcome back for Part III. We are getting into the center of this whole 100 album countdown with this one (and technically, the next one as well). For those that are skipping around and missing the previously talked about 40 albums, here is is the rules you may have missed:
Alright Folks! It's time for the list you've all been waiting for...THE TOP 100 ALBUMS OF 2017!
For any first timers to my style of Best of Lists, here is a quick run down (which I'll also be featuring on the other parts of the top 100 and other musical lists as well.)
As with the last few years of this list I made up criteria of what constitutes this list and it is as follows:
1.) A full release
2.) Not a live album, covers album, Best of, or b-sides/rarities album. A complete original studio album (bonus covers or live tracks are A-OK)
3.) Of the Rock/Metal varieties (From Pop Rock, to Death Metal, to Noise can make this list)
4.) I had to have either bought the album or received the album via promo, by the release date of December 8th. IF you release an album after this date, you are just being a jerk to everyone that wants to show you off on their Best Of Lists.
5.) My personal taste
A bit more rambling before the list commences...
I can't state enough how any album featured in the following 100 albums are albums I really, really enjoy. Not a single one of these I consider to be bad or meh or something I feel you shouldn't check out. While many struggle to put together 3 or 5 or 10 of their favorite albums of the year. I struggle to make a top 100 without feeling like I left something awesome out.
And with that, there will no doubt be albums that people will not see in any of the following lists (100 best of, EPs, covers, epics, etc) that people will feel like I am insane for not putting on these lists. Here is why they are not going to be on those lists in order of likelyhood...
1.) As noted above, I didn't get to listen to it enough.
2.) Did not hear it at all.
3.) It's just not my bag, baby.
So let's continue on with Albums 80-61!
80.) Iron Reagan- Crossover Ministry
FFO- Crossover Thrash
Iron Reagan returns with it's most diverse release to date. While the formula of the band is the same, it expands it's sound to include more styles including homages to Suicidal Tendencies and other Crossover Thrash bands we all know and love. If you want your Thrash to be full of energy, speed, and partying, but just a tad more political, go check out Iron Reagan.
79.) Inglorious- II
FFO- Hard Rock, Classic Rock, Heavy Metal
DO you miss that 70s/80s Hard Rock where it was about writing great songs while still being able to show off everyone in the band? That's exactly what Inglorious does to a T. Catchy as all get go, superb songwriting, and every single member of the band shines in their own way. The band is just getting bigger and better; hope on the Inglorious train now before it leaves the station.
78.) Diablo Swing Orchestra- Pacifisticuffs
FFO- Avant Garde Metal, Swing, Progressive Rock, Symphonic Metal
Had I received this album earlier,. it would have been much higher up on this list. This album is absolutely NOT for everyone. It is an acquired taste, covering so much ground of Swing, Tango, Prog, Metal, Symphonic, Avant Garde and many other styles I know I'm missing. They truly a genre of their own accord. If you want something more adventurous. If you want to discover a band where it sounds like an unholy mix of Frank Zappa, Unexpect, Mr. Bungle, and The Stray Cats, give this album a try. It may take you a while to comprehend everything, but it's worth the investment in time.
77.) Dead By April- Worlds Collide
FFO- Modern Metal, Metalcore
I have a real soft spot for these guys. Upon first listen, you wouldn't think it would be something I listen to that often, BUT, they write some of the absolute catchiest songs you will ever hear in metal that have true meaning behind them and make you want listen over and over again. Whether it is some of their more metalcore tinges, or their love ballads, they simply do things right. Worlds Collide is another great example of how simplicity and beautiful songwriting is key.
76.) Evocation- The Shadow Archetype
FFO- Death Metal, Melodic Death Metal
Finding that perfect niche between classic Death Metal and Melodeath; Evocation returns with their latest album filled with super brutal riffs matched with the perfect amount of melodic riffs to offset each other. If you want an album that's not afraid to be what it wants to be, pick this album out. It covers so much ground on what is so good in Death Metal.
75.) Caligula's Horse- In Contact
FFO- Progressive Metal, Progressive Rock
This is a band that just continues to get better and better with every release. Taking the best parts of their sound so far and expanding upon it, this makes for, easily, their best album to date. So catchy in it's technicality, heavy in all the right moments, and the melodies and harmonies shine like never before. Be sure to keep your eye out for these guys, they are only going to get better and better.
74.) Warbringer- Woe To The Vanquished
FFO- Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Black Metal
There's no other way to describe it. This is the BEST Warbringer album to date. It has every single thing you love about the band and for the first time in a LONG time; not afraid to show off their Black Metal sides in just the right moments. This is easily one of the best Thrash albums of the year. You are doing yourself a giant disservice by missing out on this one. Go get it NOW!
73.) Kreator- Gods Of Violence
FFO- Thrash Metal
Kreator has continued to be one of the most consistent and exciting Thrash bands today even after 33 years of existence. While many bands with that legacy taper off in quality, Kreator just gets better and better. Catchy, heavy, relevant lyrics and top notch songwriting and production; Kreator continues to show every thrash band that has come after them how it's done.
72.) Dragonforce- Reaching Into Infinity
FFO- Power Metal, Fun
Can you think of a more polarizing Power Metal band than Dragonforce? I can't! If you enjoy Power Metal you either love this band or you despise them. I am of the former. Especially over the band's last 3 albums, the band has expanded what they are capable of. The songs are, for the most part, shorter, but trimming off all the unneeded fat. Focusing on what the band is best at in the forefront and then experimenting with their sound in all the right moments; Dragonforce carries on with their very fun style of Power Metal that just brings a smile to your face if you just let it happen. Also their bonus cover of Death's Evil Dead is a cover I didn't know I needed in my life. The band is more than fire and flames, check this out and find out why.
71.) DispersE- Forward
FFO- Progressive Metal, Fantasy Music
This band continues to be one of the best underground prog bands to exist. With the band's latest offering, the band expands upon it's fantasy flavored prog sound (no, not power metal fantasy, it's positive fantasy). Imagine a mix between Devin Townsend, Cynic, Textures, and positivity...you've got DispersE. If you need an album to really brighten your spirits and you want a musical adventure, check out DispersE. You won't be disappointed.
70.) Wolfheart- Tyhjyys
FFO- Finnish Melodeath
What is it with Finland and their amazing resume of Melodeath bands? I can't name a single Melodeath band from Finland that just is anything less than excellent. Wolfheart is absolutely one of those bands. With their latest offering, it focuses much more on the Death and Black Metal that helps contribute to their sound, but all the right amount of melodies and harmonies that just make this country so great when it comes to standout music. While not the biggest band of their style, they are absolutely solid and that's more than enough reason to give these guys a shot.
69.) Dream Evil- Six
FFO- Power Metal, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal
Heavy Metal's guilty pleasure is back with their sixth album and they are absolutely on the top of their game. It doesn't matter if they are writing their anthemic bangers or their more melodic ballads; the band covers so much ground and does it with such a style that brings joy to your sense. If you drop your elitist attitude and let this sink in, you understand why Dream Evil is still writing incredible music.
68.) Uncured- Medusa
FFO- Progressive Death Metal
With the band only forming three years ago, Uncured has released one of the most absolutely solid debut albums in such a long time. Not afraid to let their influences shine while making everything it's own, Uncured is a top notch band that destroys live and and proves on this album that they are going to take the metal world by storm. Seriously, if this is just their debut album, they are only going to become better and better as time rolls on. Can't wait to see what's next.
67.) Polkadot Cadaver- Get Possessed
FFO- Basically anything Todd Smith Does
Polkadot Cadaver came from the ashes of Dog Fashion Discover many years ago. Now that DFD is back in full force, Polkadot Cadaver has become it's own entity that writes some very inspired music. The lyrics are quite quirky, keyboards take place of the brass section you'd hear from DFD, and songs unquestionably heavy and catchy; Polkadot Cadaver just hits the mark on so much of what I love in music. Discover your new musical possession.
66.) Carach Angren- Dance And Laugh Amongst The Rotten
FFO- Symphonic Black Metal
Quite the polarizing band in their own right, Carach Angren has continued to become more and more successful as time moves on. With the band's 5th album, they created a haunting concept album that captures everything that makes the band so good. So much melody and harmony amongst the evil and chaos. I feel like this album is going to go under the radar for a lot of people and compared to where the band's last album landed for me, it has for me too. But make no mistake, this is an absolute evil thrill ride. Jump in!
65.) Vallenfyre- Fear Those Who Fear Him
FFO- Death Metal, Grindcore, Doom Metal
Vallenfyre is incapable of releasing a disappointing album. This is no exception. The grind parts are even more insane, the Doom fills you with more despair, the Death Metal you simply succumb to. Everything I love about this band is in full force on this album. You need an album like this in your life if you enjoy heavy music.
64.) Scale The Summit- In A World Of Fear
FFO- Instrumental Metal, Progressive Rock
Scale The Summit returns for a musical soundtrack that is just begging for a film to be made based on it. With a new lineup, new attitude, and a straight up passion for writing good music; Scale The Summit continues to be one of the standout bands in it's style. Instrumental music needs something to bring you back to it time and time again, and these guys simply nailed it on this album. This is how it's done.
63.) Vintersorg- Till Fjalls del II
FFO- Viking Metal, Progressive Metal
The follow up to the 1998 debut, Vintersorg continues to create majestic, beautiful and thought provoking Metal that makes you feel like you are right in the middle of a Scandinavian forest about to do battle with a winter storm. One of the most distinct voices in Scandinavian Metal, Vintersorg really shines through with this much needed sequel. I can't wait to see what's next.
62.) Persefone- Aathma
FFO- Progressive Death Metal
The fact that Persefone is not one of the biggest names in Metal right now is an absolute shame. But on the plus side, they are getting bigger with every release. With Aathma, the band continues to forge it's signature sound while expanding upon what is capable. It is done to absolute perfection. I really hope these guys will continue to shine, they deserve all the love they have revived so far and every new fan they make in the future. Find out why these guys will soon be taking charge of the Progressive Metal world.
61.) Need- Hegaiamas: A Song For Freedom
FFO- Progressive Metal
I can't believe I never discovered this band earlier. The darkness of Evergrey, the proficiency of Dream Theater and the power of Pain Of Salvation. If you want some Progressive Metal with pure, unadulterated, power and emotion you....NEED....to check this band out. There's nothing else I can say to sell you on this band, just go check them out!
There we go folk, Part III has now come to a close. Stay tuned for That Drummer Guy's Top 100 Albums of 2017 Part IV: 60-41