In past years I haven’t included Terrorizer’s annual lists of the year’s best albums in our LISTMANIA series, but I don’t know why. They’re a long-running metal print zine, and although their on-line site isn’t as large as the other cross-genre “big platform” web portals I typically include in this list, it’s a popular one, and of course far more metal-centric than most of the others. So this year, they’re in, especially since our own Andy Synn now writes more regularly for them (obviously an exercise in slumming).
Terrorizer began as a UK print zine in 1993 and now they’re up to Issue No. 275, which features a band on the cover that placed highly on the list you’re about to see. In in its own judgment Terrorizer “is considered the world’s most authoritative extreme metal magazine and when it comes to heavy metal and all forms of an ungodly racket”. They launched an online site in 2007, and now have hundreds of thousands of monthly visitors.
As of today, Terrorizer finished rolling out a list of 2016’s 50 “most essential” albums based on a vote of their writers. I’ve re-posted the list below. Each album on the list is accompanied by an explanation for the pick, and you can find those via these links: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.
50. TESTAMENT ‘Brotherhood Of The Snake’ NUCLEAR BLAST
49. KRYPTS ‘Remnants Of Expansion’ DARK DESCENT
48. SABATON ‘The Last Stand’ NUCLEAR BLAST
47. THE WOUNDED KINGS ‘Visions In Bone’ SPINEFARM
46. SLABDRAGGER ‘Rise Of The Dawncrusher’ HOLY ROAR
45. HORSEBACK ‘Dead Ringers’ RELAPSE
44. KVELERTAK ‘Nattesferd’ ROADRUNNER
43. WARDRUNA ‘Rudaljod – Ragnarok’ SEASON OF MIST
42. WRETCH ‘Wretch’ BAD OMEN
41. KATATONIA ‘The Fall Of Hearts’ PEACEVILLE
40. DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT ‘Transcendence’ HEVY DEVY/INSIDE OUT
39. CONAN ‘Revengeance’ BLACK BOW
38. DÄLEK ‘Asphalt For Eden’ PROFOUND LORE
37. BÖLZER ‘Hero’ IRON BONEHEAD
36. GRAF ORLOCK ‘Crime Traveller’ VITRIOL
35. ROTTING CHRIST ‘Rituals’ SEASON OF MIST
34. INTERMENT ‘Scent Of The Buried’ PULVERISED
33. INTER ARMA ‘Paradise Gallows’ RELAPSE
32. DARKHER ‘Realms’ PROPHECY
31. BOSSK ‘Audio Noir’ DEATHWISH
30. GADGET ‘The Great Destroyer’ RELAPSE
29. SWANS ‘The Glowing Man’ MUTE
28. IHSAHN ‘Arktis’ CANDLELIGHT
27. INQUISITION ‘Bloodshed Across The Empyrean Altar Beyond The Celestial Zenith’ SEASON OF MIST
26. DESTRÖYER 666 ‘Wildfire’ SEASON OF MIST
25. ALCEST ‘Kodama’ PROPHECY
24. PURSON ‘Desire’s Magic Theatre’ SPINEFARM
23. THE BODY ‘No One Deserves Happiness’ THRILL JOCKEY
22. BOSS KELOID ‘Herb Your Enthusiasm’ BLACK BOW
21. GOJIRA ‘Magma’ ROADRUNNER
20. WORMROT ‘Voices’ EARACHE
19. URFAUST ‘Empty Space Meditation’ VÁN
18. GRAVES AT SEA ‘The Curse That Is’ RELAPSE
17. ANAAL NATHRAKH ‘The Whole Of The Law’ METAL BLADE
16. OPETH ‘Sorceress’ NUCLEAR BLAST
15. VEKTOR ‘Terminal Redux’ EARACHE
14. BLOOD INCANTATION ‘Starspawn’ DARK DESCENT
13. DISCHARGE ‘End Of Days’ NUCLEAR BLAST
12. THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN ‘Dissociation’ PARTY SMASHER INC.
11. DEATHSPELL OMEGA ‘The Synarchy Of Molten Bones’ NORMA EVANGELIUM DIABOLI
10. NAILS ‘You Will Never Be One of Us’ NUCLEAR BLAST
9. ORANSSI PAZUZU ‘Värähtelijä’ SVART
8. CULT OF LUNA AND JULIE CHRISTMAS ‘Mariner’ INDIE
7. COBALT ‘Slow Forever’ PROFOUND LORE
6. SUBROSA ‘For This We Fought The Battle of The Ages’ PROFOUND LORE
5. 40 WATT SUN ‘Wider Than The Sky’ SVART
4. TRAP THEM ‘Crown Feral’ PROSTHETIC
3. OATHBREAKER ‘Rheia’ DEATHWISH
2. DARKTHRONE ‘Arctic Thunder’ PEACEVILLE
1. NEUROSIS ‘Fires Within Fires’ NEUROT
I’ve actually been writing for them for quite a while now, but this year has been the busiest.
Fun fact though – this list was compiled (as far as I’m aware) by collating all the submitted lists from all the staff members and writers… and not a single one of my suggestions made the top 50.
I have had a bit of a chance to rethink things though, and there’s a good chance that ONE of those albums is going to make its way into my Personal Top Ten next week now, though both the Personal and Critical lists will share a lot in common with the one I submitted to Terrorizer.
“Neurosis” That’s laughable! Hydrocephalic Wombat Molester put out the best METAL album this year – don’t deny it. Stop trying to be different – you’re only appealing to hipsters. Have fun with that. I thought i’d found a credible metal music site to frequent. Apparently not – laters!
Neurosis as the best album? That is laughable. Good album, but it’s more ego stroking that Terrorizer has become known for with their best album of the year picks recently.
There are a lot of great albums on this list. But what do they have against death metal? I realize I’m biased as this is pretty much my favorite sub-genre (though I’m old enough I still have a soft spot for thrash). I thought there were some incredible DM releases this year, especially if you’re going to rank the top 50 albums. Seems really underrepresented.
Well at least Blood Incantation was #14
It is very, very light on death metal.
No Mithras, really?
I’m willing to bet that was one of Andy’s votes that obviously left him like a lone wolf crying in the wilderness.
Oh no, way too many bands I don’t know a thing about. I need to come back tomorrow. I have listened to many other bands today, that I am tired of listening to another 20 new bands. Although I will skip bands like Sabaton and other heavy metal bands, maybe this will make things easier for me. There was actually a time where I liked Post-Metal like Isis and Neurosis, but shit I can’t stand most of those slow atmospheric releases anymore.
Dang? I love reading Terrorizer in print and agree it’s probably the most extreme mag out there. But out of 50 picks they only cross with 5 of my top 20. Ok, weird tho.
I still need to get that 40 Watt Sun and Purson tho.
Some very cool picks, this list makes for a good reference 🙂
I like that they put Krypts, Interment, and Discharge on here, but their top 10 isnt doing much for me
Pleasantly surprised to see Terrorizer put a hip-hop album on their list!
At this point I’m just glad to see a metal publication that DIDN’T put Metallica as #1.
We have been tortured into accepting small favors with a smile, or a middle finger.
Am i the only one who didn’t forget Winterhorde’s “Maestro”?
Maestro is in my top 10! That one really surprised me because I haven’t listened to them since their first album, which was pretty much straight up melodic black metal. This new one has a fair amount of prog, and lots of great clean vocal melodies. Love it!
I love Swans and I dig Wardruna, but putting either band on a metal list is pushing things a bit too far IMO. I’m a bit surprised that a publication that would include Wardruna wouldn’t pick up on the Skuggsja album. I’m even more surprised they passed on Ulcerate and Gorguts. I’m not shocked they didn’t mention Plebeian Grandstand, but I wish one of the more legit publications would have, those guys deserve props.
I’m frowning upon every list this year that excludes Insomnium. Especially one that has 50 spots!
Late to this, I know. But as someone who grew up on Terrorizer (aside: John Peel’s fave music mag. He also used to wear an Extreme Noise Terrorizer shirt. RIP), I remember when Kid A made the year end list.
Other anecdotes: I remember the controversy when they gave Slipknot the cover. I also remember them changing their tagine from “metal, hardcore, industrial” to the more inclusive “extreme music”.
Does Ian Glasper (of Stampin’ Ground fame. Officer Down \m/) still write for them? Always enjoyed his writing on hardcore (despite being a longhair myself :p)
That’s Extreme Noise Terror! Stupid auto-correct.