Dec 012020


We have now entered the final month of 2020, and that begins the final countdown to the end of the year. In the world of metal, this month we’ll also start seeing more and more lists of the year’s best releases. In fact, today we began rolling out some lists of our own.

Back in 2009, when this site was just a few days old, I wrote a post about year-end lists and why people bother with them. The best reason still seems to be this: Reading someone else’s list of the albums they thought were best is a good way to discover music you missed and might like.

We don’t do an “official” NCS year-end “best albums” list. However, we publish the picks of each of our regular staff writers as well as a group of invited guest writers, in addition to lists that we re-post from a few print zines and “big platform” online sites.

Every year we also invite our readers to share their lists and we’re doing that again right here, right now.

If you’ve been pondering what you’ve heard this year and have made your own list of the albums, EPs, or splits released in 2020 that you think are the best of what you’ve heard, we invite you to share it with everyone in the Comments section to this post. And if you haven’t made a list yet but want to, there’s still plenty of time (read below).


We don’t have any hard-and-fast rules about year-end lists. Your list doesn’t have to be a specific number — it doesn’t have to be a “Top 10″ or “Top 20″ list, it could be a Top 2 list or a Top 15, or any other number.

And it doesn’t have to be a cross-genre list, i.e., the best of all metal you’ve heard this year. It could be the best death metal, or the best black metal, or the best grind, or the best crust or doom metal, and on and on — pretty much whatever you want to do and feel comfortable doing, as long as it fits your definition of metal.

Don’t be shy, and don’t worry about being judged — if you haven’t figured it out already, it ain’t our style or the style of our commenters to ridicule what someone else thinks is great metal.

And if you don’t have a list ready yet, no sweat, because you can come back to this post whenever you like and add your list later — or comment on the lists others have posted. I’ll put a link to this post at the top right side of every page so people can find it quickly — look for the link to 2020 NCS READERS’ YEAR-END LISTS. That will make the comments to this post a collection point for “Best of” readers’ lists. And that link will stay on our page from now through this time in 2020.

Last year we had 133 comments on this invitation (even more than the year before), and I think that says something about how interested people are in seeing each other’s lists and reacting to them. So start thinking and start commenting (please, and thank you).


  1. meilleur album et meilleure œuvre d’art

    Youth In Ribbons, Revenant Marquis

    Mention honorable [pas d’ordre particulier]

    Sublimation, Dephosphorus
    Metaphysics of Mass Murder, Iskalde Morket
    Nodus Tollens, Melancholic Waters

    Towards Nothingness, Lares
    En Ergô Eina, AARA
    Kannustaa, s/t
    Deathstar, Convulse
    Stare Into the Abyss, Enshadowed
    Stygian, Atramentus
    Transsatanizm, BIESY
    Intricacies of Bowed Wisdom, Grimah

  2. 1) Sumac – May You Be Held
    2) Ulcerate – Stare Into Death and Be Still
    3) Wake – Devouring Ruin
    4) …and Oceans – Cosmic World Mother
    5) Intronaut – Fluid Existential Inversions
    6) Wills Dissolve – Echoes
    7) Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville
    8) Radiant Knife – The Ghost
    8) Pyrrhon – Abcess Time
    9) Radiant Knife – The Body
    10) Aseitas – False Peace

  3. Here’s my top 2020

    Ulcerate – Stare Into Death and Be Still
    Nero di Marte – Immoto
    Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition: Chapter II: Render Unto Eden
    …And Oceans – cosmic world mother
    Abysmal dawn – phylogenesis
    Árstíðir lífsins – Saga á tveim tungum II- Eigi fjǫll né firðir
    Auðn – Vökudraumsins Fangi
    Benediction – scriptures
    black crown initiate – Violent Portraits of Doomed Escape
    bleed from within – fractures
    cult of lilith – mara
    Dark Fortress – Spectres from the Old World
    Draconian – Under a Godless Veil
    Earth Rot – Black Tides of Obscurity
    Emyn Muil – Afar Angathfark
    godthrymm – reflections
    Grafvitnir – Death’s Wings Widespread
    Gaerea – limbo
    Havukruunu – Uinuos Syömein Sota
    Ingested-Where Only Gods May Tread
    Katatonia – City Burials
    Irist – order of the mind
    Killer Be Killed – Reluctant Hero
    The ocean – phanerozoic II
    lamb of god – st
    lamp of murmur – Heir of Ecliptical Romanticism
    Lik – misanthropic breed
    Mesarthim – the degenerate era
    Napalm death – Throes Of Joy In The Jaws Of Defeatism
    Necrophobic – Dawn of the Damned
    Ordinance – In Purge There Is No Remission
    Scarab – Martyrs Of The Storm
    Skeletal Remains – The Entombment Of Chaos
    Svalbard – When I Die, Will I Get Better (
    Sylosis – Cycle of Suffering
    Testament – Titans Of Creation
    The Spirit – Cosmic Terror
    Unreqvited – both albums
    Wake – Devouring Ruin
    Warbringer – Weapons of Tomorrow
    Xenobiotic – Mordrake
    Year of the Knife – Internal Incarceration
    Ygg – The Last Scald

  4. 1) maquahuitl -at the altar of mictlampa
    2) eternal champion-ravening iron
    3) Necrophobic -dawn of the damned
    4) cirith ungol-forever black
    5)inquisition-black mass
    6) sinria -the everlorn
    7) dumal -the confessor
    8) azarath -Saint desecration
    9) pan Native American front split with ifernach
    10) ars veneficium-ursupurpation

  5. …and Oceans – Cosmic World Mother
    Auðn – Vökudraumsins fangi
    Cultus Profano – Accursed Possession
    Earth Rot – Black Tides of Obscurity
    Gaerea – Limbo
    Ormskrik – Ormskrik
    Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition – Chapter II: Render unto Eden
    Redwood Hill – Ender
    Regarde les Hommes Tomber – Ascension
    Sinistral King – Serpent Uncoiling
    Vous Autres – Sel de pierre
    Vredehammer – Viperous

  6. My 2020 list (in alphabetical order):
    – BLACK ROYAL – Firebride
    – CARDINALS FOLLY – Defying the Righteous Way
    – CHRIS STAPLETON – Starting Over
    – DEAD QUIET – Truth and Ruin
    – DEATHWHITE – Grave Image
    – FOTOCRIME – South of Heaven
    – HOUSE OF HARM – Vicious Pastimes
    – MARCHE FUNEBRE – Einderlicht
    – MIDNIGHT – Rebirth by Blasphemy
    – NOVARUPTA – Marine Snow
    – PALLBEARER – Forgotten Days
    – PARADISE LOST – Obsidian
    – SECRETS OF THE MOON – Black House
    – SOLSTAFIR – Endless Twilight of Codependent Love
    – SPIRIT ADRIFT – Enlightened in Eternity
    – THURSTON MOORE – By The Fire
    – ULVER – Flowers of Evil

    • Cheers on the Thurston Moore. Heard him on The Watt From Pedro Show not too long ago and the material was fantastic.

  7. Here’s my top 12
    1. Pyrrhon-Abscess Time
    2. Imperial triumphant-Alphaville
    3. Ulcerate-Stare into death and be still
    4. Afterbirth-four-dimensional flesh
    5. Faceless burial-Speciation
    6. Defeated Sanity-sanguine impetus
    7. Omivortex-Diagemas of consciousness
    8. Exocrine-Maelstrom
    9. Coexistence-Collateral Dimension
    10.JoJo-Good to know
    11. MSW-Obliviosus
    12. Lord Almighty-Wither

  8. In alphabetical order :

    0 – Entity
    Black Curse – Endless Wound
    Cult Of Fire – Nirvana
    Depravity – Grand Malevolence
    Draghkar – At The Crossroads of Infinity
    Fuming Mouth – Beyond The Tomb (EP)
    Hjelvik – Welcome to Hel
    Kvelertak – Splid
    Lamp of Murmuur – Heir of Ecliptical Romanticism
    Lik – Misanthropic Breed
    Mora Prokaza – By Chance
    Prometheus – Resonant Echoes from Cosmos of Old
    Sadistic Rot – Morbid Nightmare
    Sepulchral Curse – Only Ashes Remain
    Serpent Column – Endless Detainment
    Shores of Null – Beyond The Shores
    Skam – Sounds of a Disease
    Valdrin – Effigy of Nightmares

  9. Definitely a good year for metal music.

    My favourite 2020 releases in no particular order

    Empyrean Grace – Bestowment of the Seraphic Key
    Wake – Confluence
    Serpent Column – Kathodos
    Napalm Death – Throes of Joy in the Jaws of Defeatism
    Dephosphorus – Sublimation
    De Gevreesde Ziekte – Ω
    Plague Organ – Orphan
    Bone Awl – An Obelisk Marks the Line
    Ifernach – Waqan
    Grisvelos – Desperatio
    Xazraug – Unsympathetic Empyrean
    Gabestok – Tre
    Syrictus – Anticosmia
    Cosmic Putrefaction – The Horizons Towards Which Splendour Withers
    Swarming – Primeval Arteries of the Sacred Dead
    Paysage d’Hiver – Im Wald
    Esoctrilihum – Eternity of Shaog
    Sxuperion – Omniscient Pulse
    Thecodontion – Supercontinent
    Serpent Column – Endless Detainment
    Wake – Devouring Ruin
    Ulcerate – Stare Into Death and Be Still
    Khthoniik Cerviiks – Æequiizoiikum
    MSW – Obliviosus
    Somme – Somme
    Dearth – To Crown All Befoulment
    Hellripper – The Affair of the Poisons
    Bâ’a – Deus Qui Non Mentitur
    Lamp Of Murmuur – Heir of Ecliptical Romanticism
    Ominous Resurrection – Judgement

  10. Best albums
    Ulthar – Providence
    Havukruunu – Uinuos Syömein Sota
    Plague Years – Circle of Darkness
    Faceless Burial – Speciation
    Black Curse – Endless Wound
    Vredehammer – Viperous
    Vengeful Spectre – s/t
    Hellripper – The Affair of the Poisons
    Calligram – The Eye is the First Circle
    Ripped to Shreds — 亂 (Luan)
    Beltez – A Gray Chill and a Whisper
    Ulcerate – Stare into Death and Be Still
    Cryptic Shift – Visitations from Enceladus
    Gravenchalice – Apparition
    Dearth – To Crown All Befoulment

    Best Eps/Splits
    Do – Black Hole Mass (Technically, not an album. But my AotY.)
    Wraith/Bastardizer – Speed Armageddon
    Humanity is Cancer – s/t
    Subtype Zero – Ceremonious Extinction
    Death Whore – s/t
    Vonlaus – Rod Slaemra Akvardana
    Carcass – Despicable
    Aepoch – The Scryer

  11. A top 10 in alphabetical order that I just threw together

    Aborted – La Grande Mascarade
    Convocation – Ashes Coalesce
    Creative Waste – Condemned
    Crepuscule d’Hiver – Par-Dela Noireglaces et Brumes-Sinistres
    Cytotoxin – Nuklearth
    Dratna – Druid Winds & The Fall of the Celtic Gods
    Necrophobic – Dawn of the Damned
    Sinister Downfall – A Dark Shining Light
    Te Ruki – E Tika Mateu
    Wastewalker – Lowborn
    Wolfheart – Wolves of Karelia

  12. 25. Proscription – Conduit
    24. Yarrow – We Made What God Could Not
    23. Cosmovore – Into The Necrosphere
    22. Live Burial – Unending Futility
    21. Omegavortex – Black Abomination Spawn
    20. Sweven – The Eternal Resonance
    19. Cult Burial – Cult Burial
    18. Cryptic Shift – Visitations From Enceladus
    17. Encenathrakh – Thraakethraaeate Thraithraake
    16. Kraken Duumvirate – The Stars Below, The Seas Above
    15. Fluids – Ignorance Exalted
    14. Ulthar – Providence
    13. Cosmic Putrefaction – The Horizons Towards Which Splendour Withers
    12. Abyssal Ascendant – Deacons Of Abhorrence
    11. Afterbirth – Fourth Dimensional Flesh
    10. Karmacipher – Introspectrum
    9. Thecodontion – Supercontinent
    8. Xythlia – Immortality Through Quantum Suicide
    7. Evaporated Sores – Ulcerous Dimensions
    6. Ceremonial Bloodbath – The Tides Of Blood
    5. Void Rot – Descending Pillars
    4. Primitive Man – Immersion
    3. Undeath – Lesions Of A Different Kind
    2. Cryptae – Nightmare Traversal
    1. Pyrrhon – Abscess Time

  13. Ulcerate – Stare into death and be still
    Khthoniik Cerviiks – AEequiizoiikum
    Akhlys – Melinoë
    Megaton Sword – Blood hails steel
    Godthrymm – Reflections

  14. LPs:
    1. Skaphe – Skaphe3
    2. Pestilength – Eilatik
    3. Black Curse – Endless Wound
    4. Ulcerate- Stare Into Death and Be Still
    5. Nodus Tollens – Melancholic Waters
    6. Convocation- Ashes Coalesce
    7. Burning Palace – Burning Palace
    8. Odraza- Rzeczom
    9. Serpent Column – Kathidos
    10. Light Dweller – Hominal

    Serpent Column – Endless Detainment
    Phthisis – Embodiment of Decay
    Cosmovore – Into the Necrosphere
    Apparition – Granular Transformation
    Blasphematory- Depths of the Obscurity
    Malefic Levitation – The Ancient Plague

    • Cosmovore broke my “no EPs” rule and made my full list.

      • That Cosmovore is tremendous. This whole LP list is terrific. I’m whipping myself for not yet writing something about Burning Palace (I’ve been meaning to!). And based on the tastes displayed here I need to explore the four releases in the EP list that I haven’t yet heard.

  15. Demos, EPs

    Illarith, The Great Mortality
    Flail, ᛞᛁᛋᛏᚨᚾᛏ ᚹᚨᚾᛞᛖᚱᛁᛝᛋ
    IIIXK, demo 2020
    Vonlaus, Röð slæmra ákvarðana
    DEMO2020 by TYHJÄ
    Mesarthim, Planet Nine

  16. Paradise Lost – Obsidian
    Brutus – Live In Ghent
    Undeath – Lesions Of A Different Kind
    Sepulchral Curse – Only Ashes Remain
    Necrot – Mortal
    DevilDriver – Dealing with Demons
    Svalbard – When I Die, Will I Get Better
    Deftones – Ohms
    The Black Dahlia Murder – Verminous
    Scordatura – Mass Failure
    Proscription – Conduit
    Hanging Fortress – Darkness Devours
    Irdorath – The Final Sin
    Sinistral King – Serpent Uncoiling
    Vaisseau – Horrors Waiting In Line
    Sons Of A Wanted Man – Kenoma

  17. 1.Paysage d’Hiver – Im Wald
    2. Atramentus – Stygian
    3. Cénotaphe – Monte Verità
    4. Esoctrilihum – Eternity Of Shaog
    5. Eternal Champion – Ravening Iron
    6. Inquisition – Black Mass for a Mass Grave
    7. Onirik – The Fire Cult Beyond Eternity
    8. Afterbirth – Four Dimensional Flesh
    9. Wayfarer – A Romance With Violence
    10. Ifernach – Waqan
    11. Korgonthurus – Kuolleestasyntynyt
    12. Circle of Ouroborus – Viimeinen Juoksu
    13. Caverne – Omphalos
    14. Kaatayra – Toda História pela Frente
    15. Sorcier Des Glaces – Un Monde de Glace et de Sang
    16. Temple Nightside – Pillars of Damnation
    17. Sweven – The Eternal Resonance
    18. Worthless – Dark Expressionism
    19. Khthoniik Cerviiks – Жequiizoiikum
    20. Ymir – Ymir
    21. Spirit Possession – Spirit Possession
    22. Armagedda – Svindeldjup Ättestup
    23. Shagor – Sotteklugt
    24. Defeated Sanity – The Sanguinary Impetus
    25. Ulcerate – Stare Into Death And Be Still
    26. Núll – Entity
    27. Emyn Muil – Afar Angathfark
    28. Selbst – Relatos De Angustia
    29. Kommodus – Kommodus
    30. Lamp Of Murmuur – Heir of Ecliptical Romanticism

  18. ◊- Zyklus
    Abysmal Dawn – Phyliogenesis
    Benighted – Obscene Repressed
    Carnosus – Dogma of the Deceased
    Coexistence – Collateral Dimension
    Gaerea – Limbo
    Hail Spirit – Noir – Eden in Reverse
    Havukruunu – Unuo Syomein Sota
    The Hirsch Effect – Kollaps
    Intellect Devourer – Demons of the Skull
    Intronaut – Fluid Existential Inversions
    Lantern – Dimensions
    Lor – Edges of Eternity
    Midnight – Rebirth by Blasphemy
    Mobius – Kala
    Neck of the Woods – The Annex of Ire
    Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin kynsi
    Psychotic Waltz – The God-Shaped Void
    Selbst – Relatos Angustia
    Skyforest – A New Dawn
    Slave One – Omega Disciples
    Sutrah – Aletheia
    Temple of Void – The World That Was
    Ulthar – Providence
    Undeath – Lesions Of A Different Kind
    Uprising – II
    Void Ceremony – Entropic Reflections Continuum: Dimensional Unravel
    Vual – To End All Life
    VVilderness – Dark Waters
    Vyrion – Nil
    EPs – Church of Disgust, Cloud Cruiser, Heinous, Lychgate, Meurtrières, Sentient Divide, Shepherd
    Non-Metal – Angela Munoz, AWOLNation, Bill Frisell, Colin Marston, David Grissom, Elder, JG Thirlwell and Simon Steensland, Luca Mantovanelli, Matteo Liberatore, Nahre Sol, Ohmme, Oz Noy, Simon Proulx, white mansion, Wilma Archer
    Album of the Year – Lunatic Soul – Through Shaded Woods!!! Maruisz Duda knocks it out of the park!

  19. Aside from the first two, which were my out and out favorites, this is chronological from January until now.
    I love them all and want to hold them close forever and ever.

    Afterbirth – Four Dimensional Flesh
    Havukruunu – Uinuos Syomein Sota
    Kawir – Adrasteia
    Snorlax – II
    Marrasmieli – Between Land and Sky
    The Spirit – Cosmic Terror
    Spectral Lore / Mare Cognitum – Wanderers: Astrology of the Nine
    Sweven – The Eternal Resonance
    Wake – Sowing the Seeds of a Worthless Tomorrow / Wake – Confluence
    Zakaz – Hof ur Holdi
    Warp Chamber – Implements of Excruciation
    Ulcerate – Stare Into Death And Be Still
    Elder – Omens
    Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn
    Feral Light – Life Vapor
    Inexorum – Moonlit Navigation
    Diabolic Oath – Profane Death Exodus
    Uprising – II
    Khthoniik Cerviiks – AEequiizoiikum
    Faceless Burial – Speciation
    Question – Reflections of the Void
    Meslamtaea – Geketend in de Schaduw Van Het Leven
    Svalbard – When I Die, Will I Get Better?
    Spirit Adrift – Enlightened In Eternity
    Undeath – Lesions of a Different Kind
    Eternal Champion – Ravened Iron
    Beaten To Death – Laat maar, deel een, ik verhuis naar Mastbos
    Beltez – A Grey Chill and a Whisper

    • Elder! I feel like that album got buried but it might be my favorite of the year. There’s not a single second wasted on that entire record. Just brilliant stuff.

      • I have unnatural urges for this band. I think this is their best record yet and the last three were also their best. Lol.

        • Fascinating. I couldn’t get into “Omens” after completely marrying myself to their previous albums. It wasn’t awful or anything – just not that great. Perhaps I need to spin it again.

  20. I am impressed by everyone’s lists – the breadth and depth of them. I ran more toward “comfort” this year, particularly finding it in doom and other more melancholic forms. Having said that, I must admit that I feel like I only scratched the surface on new music in 2020. As such, I am sure I will add at least a couple to my best of list based on these and the NCS crew’s lists (as I did last year with Do). With that caveat, here we go –

    1. Paradise Lost – Obsidian (the perfect record for a tough, depressing year)
    2. Green Carnation – Leaves of Yesteryear (beautiful return to form – surprised no one else listed it!)
    3. Elder – Omens
    4. Do – Black Hole Mass (ep or not – way too good not to include!)
    5. Dark Buddha Rising – Mathreyata (h/t to Mr. Synn; he was right on this one)
    6. Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin kynsi
    7. Napalm Death – Throes Of Joy In The Jaws Of Defeatism
    8. Anaal Nathrakh – Endarkenment
    9. Old Man Gloom – Seminar IX and Seminar VIII (these guys put their heart and soul in this…)
    10. Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville

  21. Great lists!
    In alphabetical order, here’s my top 30 LPs so far this year, based on the effect these releases have had on me. There are some other rad releases that could so easily have made this list had I used different criteria.

    Afsky – Ofte Jeg Drømmer Mig Død
    Afterbirth – Four Dimensional Flesh
    Akhlys – Melinoë
    Aleynmord – The Blinding Light
    Aversio Humanitatis – Behold The Silent Dwellers
    Black Curse – Endless Wound
    Calligram – The Eye is the First Circle
    Cryptic Shift – Visitations From Enceladus
    Déhà – Your Existence is an anomaly which clings on hope and destruction
    Häxenzijrkell – Die Nachtseite
    Hymn – Breach Us
    Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville
    Karmacipher – Introspectrum
    Mnemocide – Feeding the Vultures
    Musmahhu – Reign of the Odious
    Napalm Death – Throes Of Joy In The Jaws Of Defeatism
    Odoacer – There the Vultures Will Gather
    Paysage d’Hiver – Im Wald
    Pharmacist – Medical Renditions Of Grinding Decomposition
    Primitive Man – Immersion
    Scatology Secretion – Submerged in Glacial Ruin
    Sunken – Livslede
    Svalbard – When I Die, Will I Get Better?
    Titaan – Itima
    Ulcerate – Stare Into Death And Be Still
    Vacuous – Katabasis
    Vile Creature – Glory, Glory! Apathy Took Helm!
    Wake – Devouring Ruin
    Xazraug – Unsympathetic Empyrean
    Yovel – Forthcoming Humanity

  22. My Top 5:

    Ulcerate – Stare Into Death and Be Still
    Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville
    Deftones – Ohms
    Igorrr – Spirituality and Distortion
    Grisvelos – Desperatio

  23. Probably have a few more than these listed. It was a very good year in metal, but then again was there ever a bad year?. They are somewhat ordered by preference, Katla being my absolute favourite for 2020.

    Katla – Allt þetta Helvítis Myrkur
    Wayfarer – A Romance With Violence
    Akhlys – Melinoë
    Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin kynsi
    Ulcerate – Stare Into Death and Be Still
    Havukruunu – Uinuos syömein sota
    The Ocean Collective – Phanerozoic II: Mesozoic/Cenozoic
    Odraza – Rzeczom
    Skáphe – Skáphe3
    Serpent Column – Kathodos
    Gorephilia – In the Eye of Nothing
    Skeletal Remains – The Entombment of Chaos
    Wake – Devouring Ruin
    Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition – Chapter II: Render Unto Eden
    Necrot – Mortal
    Thy Catafalque – Naiv
    Of Feather and Bone – Sulfuric Disintegration
    Cryptic Shift – Visitations From Enceladus
    Hail Spirit Noir – Eden in Reverse
    Malokarpatan – Krupinské ohne
    Proscription – Conduit
    Cosmic Putrefaction – The Horizons Towards Which Splendour Withers
    Manticora – To Live to Kill to Live
    Vassafor – To the Death
    Temple Nightside – Pillars of Damnation
    Cryptae – Nightmare Traversal

  24. It feels selfish and yet cathartic to reflect on this year in terms of music. Like many, 2020 offered me far less listening time than usual due to challenges faced at home, with work, etc. This lack of leisure time translates further into my simple list of favorites. I make no attempt to claim this is any sort of “critical top albums”…this is the stuff I enjoyed the most during the little listening time I had this year. I hope some here may find enjoyment in these picks, mostly death metal, listed A-Z by artist.

    Bear Mace – Charred Fields of Slaughter
    Black Curse – Endless Wound
    Earth Rot – Black Tides of Obscurity
    Esoctrilum – Eternity of Shaog
    Faceless Burial – Speciation
    Intercepting Pattern – The Encounter
    Invictus – The Catacombs of Fear
    KVAEN – The Funeral Pyre
    Necrot – Mortal
    Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition – Chapter II
    Perdition Temple – Sacraments of Descention
    Phthisis – Embodiment of Decay (EP)
    Ripped to Shreds – Luan
    Sentient Divide – Haunted by Cruelty
    Skeletal Remains – The Entombment of Chaos
    Skeleton – s/t
    Spirit Adrift – Enlightened in Eternity
    Ulthar – Providence
    Undeath – Lesions of a Different Kind
    Vredehammer – Viperous
    Wake – Devouring Ruin
    Warp Chamber – Implements of Excruciation
    Witches Hammer – Damnation Is My Salvation
    Vengeful Specter – s/t

    Bonus – I fully expect the December 4 release by Depravity to make the list as well, and have resisted the temptation to listen to any of the singles.

    There might be a couple of other surprises, and I’m sure the list will grow as I find time in the future to listen to more 2020 material.

  25. 1) Ulcerate: Stare into death and be Still

    2) Vampire: Rex

    3) Convocation: Ashes Coalesce

    4) Incantation: Sect of vile Divinities

    5) Skeletal Remains: The Entombment of Chaos

    6) Grave Circles: Tome II

    7) Sweven: The eternal Resonance

    8) Omegavortex: Black abomination Spawn

    9) Mörk Gryning: Hinsides Vrede

    10) Svartkonst: Black Waves

    11) Necrophobic: Dawn of the Damned

    12) The Ocean: Phanerozoic II – Mesozoic/Cenozoic

    13) Atramentus – Stygian

    14) Selbst: Relatos de Angustia

    15) Gaerea: Limbo

    16) Panzerfaust: The suns of Perdition – Chapter II: Render unto Eden

    17) Bedsore: Hpnagogic Hallucinations

    18) Voidceremony: Entropic reflections continuum: Dimensional Unravel

    19) Lantern: Dimensions

    20) Paradise Lost: Obsidian

    21) Dark Tranquillity: Moment

    22) Anaal Nathrakh: Endarkenment

    23) Bythos: The womb of Zero

    24) Aara: En ergô Einai

    25) Nomad: Transmogrification (partus)

    26) Temple of Void: The world that Was

    27) Regarde Les Hommes Tomber: Ascension

    28) Ossaert: Bedehuis

    29) Nyrst: Orsök

    30) Azarath: Saint Desecration

    31) Lie In Ruins: Floating in timeless Streams

    32) Void Rot: Descending Pillars

    33) Just Before Dawn: An army at Dawn

    34) Napalm Death: Throes of joy in the jaws of Defeatism

    35) Necrot: Mortal

    36) Temple Nightside: Pillars of Damnation

    37) Primitive Man: Immersion

    38) The Bishop of Hexen: The Death Masquerade

    39) Acherontas: Psychic Death – The shattering of Perceptions

    40) October Falls: A fall of an Epoch

    41) Above Aurora: The shrine of Deterioration

    42) Black Curse: Endless Wound

    43) Solothus: Realm of ash and Blood

    44) Medico Peste: The black Bile

    45) Night Crowned: Impius Viam

  26. 1. Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition, Chapter II
    2. Wake – Devouring Ruin
    3. Ulcerate – Stare Into Death and Be Still
    4. Antzaat – For You Men Who Stare Into The Sun
    5. Black Curse – Endless Wound
    6. Ordinance – In Purge There Is No Remission
    7. Akhlys – Melinoe
    8. Lamp of Murmuur – Heir Of Ecliptical Romanticism
    9. Havukruunu – Uinuos Syömein Sota
    10. Faceless Burial – Speciation

  27. Coastlands- Death
    Esoctrilihum- Eternity of Shaog
    Just Before Dawn- An Army at Dawn
    Lantern- Dimensions
    Skelethal- Unveiling the Threshold
    Skeleton- s/t
    The Ocean- Phanerozic II:Mesozoic/Cenozoic (instrumental version)
    Undeath- Lesions of a Different Kind
    Uprising- II
    Yaotl Mictlan- Sagrada Tierra del Jaguar

  28. I don’t think I’ve ever had a band on my list two years in a row and now this year an incredible FOUR bands that were also on my list last year (the first 4 listed)…

    Second to Sun
    Vous Autres
    Earth Rot
    Mors Principium Est

  29. “…and don’t worry about being judged”

    I don’t know. Someone put that new Convulse album on their list and I’m feeling a might bit judgemental right now

    • Meow

      • Beltez
        a grey chill and whisper

        the sons of perdition chapter 2

        stare into death and be still


        a romance with violence

        the dead are screaming

        Temple of void
        the world that was

        the funeral pyre

        Puritan Masochism

        old smoke

        Decembre Noir
        the Renaissance of hope

    • I like it what the problem

      • You mean, other than those terrible vocals that sound completely divorced from the music?

        • Please not respond to my comment you are not very nice a person I like it and like NCS because it does not slag off on bands

          Islander always positive criticism!

          • You are perfectly welcome to like it.

            While I was primarily making a joke, you asked me why I had a problem with it, and as someone who thinks “World Without God” is a god-tier album, I was highly disappointed with this release, particularly because the vocals seem completely out of place with the music…

            …but music is completely subjective, so it doesn’t really matter what I think

            • Music is not completely subjective. That is nonsense. If it were, you would not have any objective standards about what is good metal and what is not. You just made your own argument. Subjectivity is not something that can be argued. It’s like I LIKE BLUE. You cannot argue that. Shitty vocals are objects to argue.

  30. A Top 10 List
    1. Sorcier Des Glaces – Un Monde de Glace et de Sang
    2. Paysage d’Hiver – Im Wald
    3. Malokarpatan – Krupinske Ohne
    4. Valdrin – An Effigy of Nightmares
    5. Leviathan – Förmorkelse
    6. Katavasia – Magnus Venator
    7. Wayfarer – A Romance With Violence
    8. Mork Gryning – Hinsides Vrede
    9. Esoctrilihum – An Eternity of Shaog
    10. Eternal Champion – Ravening Iron

  31. Un Noctriulm
    Drought, “Trimurti
    Odraza, Rzeczom
    Dystopia Geen Weg Uit
    Corpses by Catafalque
    Deus Qui Non Mentitur by BÂ’A
    Sacred Ashes by Lesath
    Sluagh I by Sluagh
    Hangatyr, kalt
    Reysa by Asarhaddon
    Þar sem skepnur reika by Hræ

  32. Auðn – Vökudraumsins Fangi
    Havukruunu – Uinuos Syömein Sota
    Sunken – Livslede
    Aara: En ergô Einai
    Wayfarer – A Romance With Violence
    Dawn of Solace – Waves
    Forndom – Faþir
    Wytch Hazel – III: Pentecost
    Rope Sect – he Great Flood
    Eternal Champion – Ravening Iron

  33. Beltez
    a grey chill and whisper

    the sons of perdition chapter 2

    stare into death and be still


    a romance with violence

    the dead are screaming

    Temple of void
    the world that was

    the funeral pyre

    Puritan Masochism

    old smoke

    Decembre Noir
    the Renaissance of hope

  34. Work in progress, but it looks something like this right now:

    4-11 – No order(yet….)
    Dark Tranquillity

    Albums making lasting impression, extreme domains:
    Cult of Fire
    Temple of Void
    On Thorns I Lay
    Bull Elephant
    Marche Funebre
    October Falls

    Some very good Doom/Heavy/Progressive/Speed:
    Eternal Champion
    Dark Quarterer
    Cirith Ungol
    Spirit Adrift
    Green Carnation
    High Spirits
    Dead Lord
    Northern Crown
    Megaton Sword

  35. Just one for me stand out from what has been a surprising good year of metal considering the circumstances.

    ISENSCUR “Āsyndraþ”

    Other wonders that won my heart.
    Angelore “ La Litanie des Cendres” and Convocation “Ashes Coalesce”

  36. Only came across this site a few months ago…very happy I found it. Not all is to my taste but in most of those cases I am challenged which is a good thing. My list is short but consists of albums I bought this year (3 of which I came to know via ncs):

    Haavukrunu – Uinuos Syömein Sota
    Forlesen – Hierophant Violent
    The Ocean – Phanerozoic II: Mesozoic | Cenozoic
    Solstafir – Endless Twilight of Codependent Love

    • I love all four of these albums, and they make for an interesting variety of music. Really glad you are with us, and that you have discovered music you enjoy here. I would be shocked if anyone finds everything we feature to their tastes. Most of our writers don’t embrace everything that shows up on the site! But the fact that you are being challenged, I take that as a compliment. 🙂

  37. After getting through over 650+ new albums this year (most of which I’ll be happy to never listen to again) – these are my personal favourite releases of 2020. Lots of worthy mentions – but the best of the best are below. Pretty tight at the top this year to pick out an absolute fav … and there’s still a month to go…

    Very, very worthy mentions
    Ages – Uncrown
    Amherawdr – Adorned with the figures of snakes
    Asarhoddon – Reysa
    Auðn – Vökudraumsins fangi
    Disamara – Nottura e la quiete
    DownCross – Current towards end
    Dystopia – Geen Weg Uiit
    Eoront – Gods Have No Home
    Fellwarden – Wreathed in Mourncloud
    Fluisteraars – Bloem
    Genfærd – Blodhævn
    Glaciation – Ultime Edat
    Lucid Void – Saat
    Morgurth – And then there shall be silence
    Naxen – Towards the tomb of times
    Null – Entity
    Okkultokrati – La Ilden Lyse
    Sickle of Dust – To the shores of sunrise
    Uprising – II
    Walkuria – Irminsul
    Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn
    Zifir – Demonic Ethics

    13. Thy Catafalque – Naiv
    12. Gloosh – the River (EP)
    11. Labyrinth Spell – At the blackest corners
    10. Autumn Nostalgia – Esse Est Percipi
    9. Sunken – Livslede
    8. Konvent – Puritan Masochism
    7. Vermillia – Keskeneraisia Tarinoita
    6. Solstafir – Endless Twilight of Codependent Love
    5. Ygg – The last scald
    4. Olhava – Ladoga
    1 -joint. Prison of Mirrors – De Ritualibus et Sacrificiis ad Serviendum Abysso
    1 -joint. Havukruunu -Uinuos Syömein Sota
    1 -joint. Vspolokh – Помре

  38. Like others it seems, the circumstances of this year severely cut into my listening time, and I found I tended just to throw on some music already loaded on my player rather than search out new tunes. Most often catching up on 2019 releases I was slow to pick up, like Allegaeon’s Apoptosis or getting to grips with Schammasch’s Hearts Of No Light. Otherwise just sitting back and cranking Aegaeon’s Age which has quickly become one of my favourite releases.

    So I have some serious catching up to do… and these lists will be a good start 🙂

    The only 2020 releases I picked up this year that I feel are worth mentioning have been:
    * Deathwhite – Grave Image
    * Aversions Crown – Hell Will Come For Us All
    * All My Sins – Plamen i Led
    * .. And Oceans – Cosmic World Mother
    * At The Altar Of The Horned God – Through Doors Of Moonlight
    * Myrkur – Folkesange

    • Forgot: Esoctrilihum – Eternity Of Shaog, although I see a few others have thankfully included it here too. I’d vote Namhera (7th Passage- Blasphemy Of Ephereàs) for most infectious tunes of the year for sure. Like a strangely addictive fever dream \m/

  39. One of the better years of metal, as far as I can remember. A lot of the ‘big name’ releases were somewhat uneventful to me, but many new/ newer names released truly jaw-dropping releases.

    Countless Skies – for now my personal favourite of this year – is a good example of this: they had two good, but rather anonymous first releases – and somehow now, third release in, they’ve found truly their own twist to the sound of which they are clearly influenced (Be’lakor, with hints of Barren Earth and Insomnium, that is). ‘Glow’ is an amazing, compact album that somehow manages to be opmistic despite the ‘sad boi’ genre they’re in – and The Big Man Upstairs knows we need a little optimism this year.

    1. Countless Skies – Glow
    2. Sunken – Livslede
    3. Mountaineer – Bloodletting
    4. Dawn of Ouroboros – The Art of Morphology
    5. Karshadev – The Baring of Shadows
    6. Draconian – Under a Godless Veil
    7. Lethian Dreams – A Shadow of Memories
    8. Katatona – City Burials
    9. Dark Tranquillity – Moment
    10. Rotten Monarch – Winds over Ash
    11. Shores of Null – Beyond the Shores (On Death and Dying)
    12. Paradise Lost – Obsidian
    13. Xenobiotic – Mordrake
    14. God Dethroned – Illuminati
    15. Dawn of Solace – Waves
    16. Ashtar – Kaikuja
    17. Selbst – Relatos De Angustia
    18. Marche Funebre – Einderlicht
    19. The Ocean – Phanerozoic II: Mesozoic | Cenozoic
    20. Naxen – Towards the Tomb of Times
    21. … And Oceans – Cosmic World Mother
    22. Sylosis – Cycle of Suffering
    23. Aeternam – Al Qassam
    24. Clouds – Durere
    25. Wake – Devouring Ruin
    26. Karg – Traktat
    27. Soliloquiem – Things We Leave Behind
    28. Gaerea – Limbo
    29. Invernoir – The Void and the Unbearable Loss
    30. Sinistral King – Serpent Uncoiling
    31. Counting Hours – the Will
    32. Inexorum – Moonlit Navigation
    33. Drops of Heart – Stargazers
    34. Sojourner – Premonitions
    35. Aleah – Aleah
    36. Delain – Apocalypse & Chill
    37. Hail Spirit Noir – Eden in Reverse
    38. Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn
    39. Hanging Garden – Against the Dying of the Light
    40. Malist – To Mantle the Rising Sun

  40. These are the top bands that I consistently gravitated towards through the year. Majority are excellent with repelling unworthy neighborly intrusions.

    1. A pregnant Light- I and I
    2. Al-Namrood-Wala’at
    3. Autumn’s Dawn- Dying Ember
    4. Fadheit-Inhaling the Trauma
    5. Fluisteraars- Bloem
    6. Inquisition-Black Mass for A Mass Grave
    7. Lament-Visions and A Giant of Nebula
    8. Logos-Of Darkness and Despair
    9. Sascha Rissling-Abstand
    10. Skyforest-A New Dawn
    11. Spell of Dark- The Vastness
    12. Together to the Stars- As we Wither
    13. Vale-Our Denouement
    14. Vvilderness- Dark Waters

  41. For me, there is only one masterpiece for the year 2020 and that is Akhlys – Melinoë.

    Beside that album, my top 3 go to :

    1- Afsky – Ofte Jeg Drømmer Mig Død
    2- Convocation – Ashes Coalesce
    3- Temple of Void – The World That Was

    Here is 10 other great albums that I really enjoyed this year :

    Fluisteraars – Bloem
    Disembowel – Echoes of Terror
    Ovader – Wotankult
    Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin Kynsi
    Fires in the Distance – Echoes from Deep November
    Fellwarden – Wreathed in Mourncloud
    Infera Bruo – Rites of the Nameless
    Burial – Satanic Upheaval
    Eoront – Gods Have No Home
    Marche Funèbre – Einderlicht

  42. This are mine, more or less in order. Still waiting for the ones from Fortíð and Black Wing.

    1 Sweven – The Eternal Resonance
    2 Faceless Burial – Speciation
    3 Oberst – Paradise
    4 Caustic Wound – Death Posture
    5 Nothing – The Great Dismal
    6 The Sorcerers – In Search of the Lost City of the Monkey God
    7 Plague – Portraits of Mind
    8 Rope Sect – The Great Flood
    9 Dark Tranquillity – Moment
    10 Auðn – Vökudraumsins fangi
    11 VoidCeremony – Entropic Reflections Continuum: Dimensional Unravel
    12 Warp Chamber – Implements of Excruciation
    13 Black Curse – Endless Wound
    14 Kvelertak – Splid
    15 Undeath – Lesions of a Different Kind
    16 Code Orange – Underneath
    17 Melt Yourself Down – 100% Yes
    18 Run the Jewels – RTJ4
    19 Skeleton – Skeleton
    20 Of Feather and Bone – Sulfuric Disintegration
    21 Disembowel – Echoes of Terror
    22 Defeated Sanity – The Sanguinary Impetus
    23 Fleet Foxes – Shore
    24 Shabaka and the Ancestors – We Are Sent Here by History
    25 Disrupted – Pure Death
    26 Coffin Apartment – Full Torso Apparition
    27 Snorlax – II (2020)

  43. Just for fun, if my observations are correct, so far, Ulcerate is the band appearing on the most lists with 15 mentions.
    Havukruunu and Wake are second with 10 each. Black Curse and Panzerfaust are mention 8 times so far, while Undeath appears on 7 lists.

    To be continued… 🙂

    • I was thinking of tallying this up, but if you are doing just that, please share results. Thanks!

      I would love for Islander to feature it as another Listmania vector. I think it would be very interesting to most here.

  44. Top five:
    1 Prison of Mirrors – De Ritualibus et Sacrificiis ad Serviendum Abysso
    2 Skáphe – Skáphe³
    3 Ulcerate – Stare into Death and Be Still
    4 Akhlys – Melinoë
    5 Inquisition-Black Mass for A Mass Grave
    No order:
    Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition – Chapter II: Render Unto Eden
    Árstíðir Lifsins – Saga á tveim tungum II: Eigi fjǫll né firðir
    Novae Militiae – Topheth
    Auðn – Vökudraumsins fangi
    Ominous Resurrection – Judgement
    Afsky – Ofte Jeg Drømmer Mig Død
    Amnutseba – Emanatism
    Aversio Humanitatis – Behold The Silent Dwellers

  45. Cirith Ungol – Forever Black
    Cryptic Shift – Visitations from Enceladus
    Dark Fortress – Spectres From the Old World
    Eternal Champion – Ravening Iron
    High Spirits – Hard to Stop
    Lamp of Murmuur – Heir of Ecliptical Romanticism
    Lantern – Dimensions
    Midnight – Rebirth by Blasphemy
    Necrophobic – Dawn of the Damned
    Question – Reflections of the Void
    Spirit Adrift – Enlightened in Eternity
    Sweven – The Eternal Resonance
    Temple of Void – The World That Was
    Ulthar – Providence
    Voidceremony – Entropic Reflections Continuum

  46. 2020 seemed a weird year for me, musically. It seemed to be going great for the first half of the year, then around August/September, I just couldn’t find anything I could really get into. Anyway, this is what kept me going this year:

    1. Obsidian Tongue – Volume III
    2. Sweven – The Eternal Resonance
    3. Cryptic Shift – Visitations From Enceladus
    4. Dark Forest – Oak, Ash & Thorn
    5. Valdrin – Effigy Of Nightmares
    6. Convocation – Ashes Coalesce

    Honourable mentions:
    Wake – Devouring Ruin
    Ulcerate – Stare Into Death And Be Still
    Black Curse – Endless Wound
    Warp Chamber – Implements Of Excruciation
    Spectral Lore & Mare Cognitum – Wanderers: Astrology Of The Nine

  47. EO3 Says:

    Great lists by everyone. Overall a great year for metal.

    The top 20 list for 2020 is as follows:

    1 Katavasia – Magnus Venator
    2 Secrets of the Moon – Black House
    3 Ulver – Flowers of Evil
    4 Enslaved – Utgard
    5 Katatonia – City Burials
    6 Psychotic Waltz – The God Shaped Void
    7 Green Carnation – Leaves of Yesteryear
    8 Necrophobic – Dawn of the Damned (Those Riffs!)
    9 Invoker – Towards the Pantheon of the Nameless
    10 Khora – Timaeus
    11 and Oceans – Cosmic World Mother
    12 Sinister – Deformation of the Holy Realm (These veterans not getting enough love in these lists!)
    13 Paysage D’Hiver – Im Wald
    14 Triptykon – Requiem (Fantastic Live Experience!)
    15 Acherontas – Psychic Death – The Shattering of Perceptions
    16 Uada – Djinn
    17 Illum Adora – Infernum Et Necromantium
    18 Centinex – Death in Pieces
    19 Sanctifying Ritual – Sanctifying Ritual
    20 Night Crowned – Impius Viam

  48. Awesome year for extreme metal! (especially for black metal)
    Here are my lists:

    Top 4:
    1) Akhlys – Melinoë “Really AMAZING, no other words. Maybe too short..”

    2) Prison of Mirrors – De Ritualibus et Sacrificiis ad Serviendum Abysso and Lamp Of Murmuur – Heir of Ecliptical Romanticism “Both awesome, with two totally different approaches towards the darkness”

    3)Circle of Ouroborus – Viimeinen Juoksu “Criminally underrated masterpiece”

    4) Ars Magna Umbrae – Apotheosis

    5) Horna – Kuoleman kirjo

    – Uada – Djinn Barely black metal… terrible album
    – Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville “A big step down from their latest one”
    – Spectral Lore / Mare Cognitum – Wanderers: Astrology of the Nine “Decent but nothing special”
    – Odraza- Rzeczom “An uncommon approach to black metal but mediocre”
    – Wake – Devouring Ruin
    – Faidra – Six Voices Inside

    – Vonlaus – Röð slæmra ákvarðana
    – Prison of Mirrors – De Ritualibus et Sacrificiis ad Serviendum Abysso
    – Death. Void. Terror. – To the Great Monolith II
    – Circle of Ouroborus – Viimeinen Juoksu
    – Neptunian Maximalism – Éons
    – Skáphe – Skáphe³
    – Selbst – Relatos de angustia
    – Ars Magna Umbrae – Apotheosis

  49. In no particular order, FAVOURITES:

    Ars Magna Umbrae – Apotheosis
    Odraza – Rzezcom
    Carnosus – Dogma of the Deceased
    At the Altar of the Horned God – Through Doors of Moonlight
    Akhlys – Merinoe
    Iron Flesh – Summoning the Putrid
    Tombs – Under Sullen Skies
    Curse Upon A Prayer – Infidel
    Faidra – Six Voices Inside
    Pigsty – Pig Blood
    Rektal Tuşe – Aklen Muaf
    Valdrin – Effigy of Nightmares
    Vredehammer – Viperous
    Cytotoxin – Nuklearth
    Medico Peste – The Black Bile


    Hostia – Carnivore Carnival
    Blasphamagoatachrist – Bastardizing the Purity
    Night Club – Die Die Lullaby
    Switchblade Jesus – Death Hymns
    Ka – Descendants of Cain
    Biesy – Transsatanism
    Ignis Gehenna – Rituals of Transvaluation
    Yxxan – Satanic Fortification Overbalance
    Botanist – Photosynthesis
    Saturno – Menhir
    Prison of Mirrors – De Ritualibus et Sacrificiis ad Serviendum Abysso

  50. I can’t believe there are so many bands on these lists i have never heard of before! Granted, it wasn’t a huge Metal year for me, buying, paying attention, usually looking at a few Mags and Bandcamp but shit…there are a ton of bands out of nowhere this year. It’s noteworthy.

  51. I reached new depths of nadir this year. Music carried me part way, I’m still here and god be damned was it a fuckin year, for tunes. I missed a lot of reading on here and in general cos of work, here’s some of the magick that kept my black and slightly saccharine heart beating:

    1. Spells in constant rotation, top 6

    Hail spirit noir – critical listening.

    Thy catafalque – year started with this beaut, and was it a fuckin omen of things to come!

    Anaal nathrakh – fuckin brought it, just non-stop delivery

    Funeral candies – fucking yes, so much fun:) Do you like a side of organ with your metal? Here, take a fuckin He-man Lighthouse diner helping

    Tool – might no be seen as metal but just watch that danny carey drum cam vid on ytube and tell me you ain’t spellbound

    Inquisition – burn all the churches, and scaphe metalsucks

    2. Heard and loved
    Uada – mostly just the first single
    Make them die slowly – so tasty

    3. Have not listened to enough but impressed, or bands that I love
    Neptunian maximalism
    Nocturnal departure
    Rebel wizard
    Imperial triumphant
    Lamb of god

    4. Needed to chill, also not new
    Tiraniwen – Elwan
    Malatu Atstatke
    Tamas Katai – Slower Structures.

    This is the best part of my year sonically, can’t wait for the rest of the lists to roll out. Have a great December! Non serviam

  52. Top Albums:

    AETERNAM – Al Qassam

    AFTERBIRTH – Four Dimensional Flesh

    AKURION – Come Forth to Me

    ASEITAS – False Peace

    ATRAMENTUS – Stygian

    BARISHI – Old Smoke


    BINARY CODE – Memento Mori


    CARNOSUS – Dogma of the Deceased

    CONSTELLATIA – The Language of Limbs [technically a 2020 release]

    CONVOCATION – Ashes Coalesce

    COSMIC PUTREFACTION – The Horizons Towards Which Splendour Withers


    CYTOTOXIN – Nuklearth

    DDENT – Couvre-sang

    DEFEATED SANITY – The Sanguinary Impetus

    DESCEND – The Deviant

    DIABOLIC OATH – Profane Death Exodus

    EXGENESIS – Solve Et Coagula


    I THE INTRUDER – Hunger

    INANEM – Blackwork

    KARMACIPHER – Introspectrum

    KUNSTZONE – Exit Babylon


    NERO DI MARTE – Immoto

    QUASARBORN – A Pill Hard to Swallow

    RANNOCH – Reflections Upon Darkness

    SERPENT COLUMN – Kathodos

    SPECTRUM OF DELUSION – Neoconception

    SWEVEN – The Eternal Resonance

    UTHULLUN – Dirges for the Void

    VALDRIN – Effigy of Nightmares

    WYRMWOODS – Gamma

    XENOBIOTIC – Mordrake

    ZAN – Behold the Key


    Top EPs:

    ATRAE BILIS – Divinihlity

    COSMOVORE – Into the Necrosphere

    FLESHVESSEL – Bile of Man Reborn

    SERPENT COLUMN – Endless Detainment

    SUTRAH – Aletheia

  53. My top 19, which is pretty much just the albums that got a lot of playing time for me this year, the honorable mentions are albums that I still enjoyed but didn’t spend as much time listening to:

    1. Akhlys – Melinoe
    2. Spectral Lore/Mare Cognitum (split) – Wanderers: Astrology of the Nine
    3. Kvaen – The Funeral Pyre
    4. Gloosh – Timewheel
    5. Mortis Mutilati – The Fate of Flight 800
    6. Afsky – Ofte jeg drømmer mig død
    7. Stormkeep – Galdrum
    8. Skeletal Remains – The Entombment of Chaos
    9. Temple of Void – The World That Was
    10. Bythos – Womb of Zero
    11. Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville
    12. Necrot – Mortal
    13. Arroganz – Morsus
    14. Wombripper – Macabre Melodies
    15. Wayfarer – A Romance with Violence
    16. Ripped to Shreds – Luan
    17. Horn – Mohngang
    18. Gloosh – The River EP
    19. Dumal – The Confessor

    Honorable mentions:
    Of Feather and Bone – Sulfuric Disintegration
    Acherontas – Psychic Death
    Ulcerate – Stare Into Death and Be Still
    Malokarpatan – Krupinské Ohne
    Raven Throne – Viartańnie (Chroniki Źmiainaj Ciemry)
    Atramentus – Stygian
    Ayr – The Dark
    Antzaat – For You Men Who Gaze Into the Sun
    Blaze of Perdition – The Harrowing of Hearts
    Black Curse – Endless Wound
    Gjendød – Angrep
    Perdition Temple – Sacraments of Descension
    Skaphe – Skaphe³
    VoidCeremony – Entropic Reflections Continuum: Dimensional Unravel
    Graceless – Where Vultures Know Your Name
    Porta Nigra – Schöpfungswut
    Grimah – Intracacies of Bowed Wisdom
    Svarttjern – Shame Is Just A Word
    Horned Almighty – To Fathom the Master’s Grand Design
    Martwa Aura – Morbus Animus
    The Ruins of Beverast/Almyrkvi – Split
    Faidra – Six Voices Inside
    Wynter Myst – End of an Era
    Helfró – Helfró
    Curse Upon a Prayer – Infidel
    Waldgeflüster – Stimmen im Wind
    Mimorium – Blood of Qayin
    Svartkonst – Black Waves
    Marrasmieli – Between Land and Sky
    Front – Antichrist Militia
    Detherous/Stench of Death – Stench of Deth split
    Naxen – Towards the Tomb of Times
    Ovader – Wotankult
    Valdrin – Effigy of Nightmares
    Naglfar – Cerekloth
    Csejthe – Reminiscence
    Väki – Kuolleen Maan Omaksi
    Gaerea – Limbo
    Imha Tarikat – Sternenberster
    Ars Magna Umbrae – Apotheosis
    Ninkharsag – Discipline Through Black Sorcery
    Auđn – Vökudraumsins Fangi
    Lik – Misanthropic Breed
    Whoredom Rife – Ride the Final Tide (Single)
    Decaying – Shells Will Fall
    Revolting – The Shadow at the World’s End
    Enevelde – Enevelde
    Bombs of Hades – Phantom Bell
    Glaciation – Ultime Éclat
    Nansis – Chaos Veterum
    Sunken – Livslede
    Fordomth – Is, Qui Mortem Audit
    Uada – Djinn
    Lie in Ruins – Floating in Timeless Streams
    Fides Inversa – Historia Nocturna
    Just Before Dawn – An Army at Dawn
    Odium Humani Generis – Przeddzien
    Invincible Force – Decomposed Sacramentum
    Demonical – World Domination
    Svartsyn – Requiem
    Sarcator – s/t
    Grafvitnir – Death’s Wings Widespread
    Malist – To Mantle the Rising Sun
    Dehuman Reign – Descending Upon the Oblivious
    Nyktophobia – What Lasts Forever
    Slaughterday – Ancient Death Triumph
    Soulburn – Noa’s D’ark
    Blasphemer – The Sixth Hour
    Hræ – þar Sem Skepnur Reika
    Königreichssaal – Witnessing the Dearth
    Nekrovault – Totenzug: Festering Peregrination
    Terrestrial Hospice – Indian Summer Brought Mushroom Clouds
    Cauldron Black Ram – Slaver
    Ages – Uncrown
    Icon of Phobos/Kathexis (split) – Primal Death Rites
    Ulthar – Providence
    Auroch – Stolen Angelic Tongues EP
    Ondskapt – Grimoire Ordo Devus
    Void Rot – Descending Pillars
    Bedsore – Hypnagogic Hallucinations
    Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition Chapter II: Render Unto Eden
    Begrafven – Dödsriket
    Vader – Solitude in Madness
    Cemetary Filth – Dominion
    Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn
    Carnation – Where Death Lies
    Serpents Oath – Nihil
    Heads for the Dead – Into The Red
    Nattverd – Styggdom
    Ars Veneficium – Usurpation of the Seven
    Wake – Devouring Ruin

  54. My numero uno for all of 2020 was Sevdaliza – Shabrang. Here be me top 10 for metal.

    1. Wake – Devouring Ruin
    2. Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition – Chapter II: Render unto Eden
    3. Ulcerate – Stare Into Death and Be Still
    4. Leeched – To Dull the Blades of Your Abuse
    5. Patrons Of The Rotting Gate – Bathed in Ash
    6. Svartkonst – Black Waves
    7. Nero di Marte – Immoto
    8. Hail the Void – Hail the Void
    9. Akhlys – Melinoë
    10. Scáth Na Déithe – The Dirge of Endless Mourning

  55. 1) Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition – Chapter II: Render unto Eden

    2)Akhlys – Melinoë

    3)Prison of Mirrors – De Ritualibus et Sacrificiis ad Serviendum Abysso

    4)Havukruunu – Uinuos Syomein Sota

    5)Bâ’a – Deus Qui Non Mentitur

    6)Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville

    7)Paysage d’Hiver – Im Wald

    8)Árstíðir lífsins – Saga á tveim tungum II- Eigi fjǫll né firðir

    9)Esoctrilihum – Eternity Of Shaog

    10)Armagedda – Svindeldjup Ättestup

  56. I still have a lot of stuff to listen to, but year-to-date these are my personal favorites. I feel VERY strongly about the top 5 or 6, too:

    Hum “Inlet”
    Kvelertak “Splid”
    Slift “Ummon”
    Malokarpatan “Krupinske Ohne”
    Thou & Emma Ruth Rundle “May Our Chambers Be Full”
    Enslaved “Utgard”
    The Night Flight Orchestra “Aeromantic”
    Paradise Lost “Obsidian”
    Higher Power “27 Miles Underwater”
    Godthrymm “Reflections”
    Ulthar “Providence”
    MSW “Obliviosus”
    Fluisteraars “Bloem”
    Black Curse “Endless Wound”
    Oranssi Pazuzu “Mestarin Kynsi”
    Ulcerate “Stare Into Death and Be Still”
    Huntsmen “Mandala Of Fear”
    Sweven “The Eternal Resonance”

  57. Dear NCS – Thank you for your generous contribution to making the world a better place! It’s been horrible, this year. Your efforts have been massive, thank you.

    I enjoy reading all of these lists incredibly much, checking out a whole understory of bands afterwards.

    Here’s my list.
    Not afraid of so-called Big Cats in the field. And I have a broad taste.

    Cheers, everyone!


    Katatonia: City Burials

    Cytotoxin: Nuklearth

    Pallbearer: Forgotten Days

    Xazraug: Unsympathetic Empyrean

    Beltez: A Grey Chill and a Whisper

    Countless Skies: Glow

    Drown: Subaqueous

    Necrot: Mortal

    Beneath the Massacre: Fearmonger

    Proscription: Conduit


    Sweven: The Eternal Resonance

    Spirit Adrift: Enlightened in Eternity

    End: Splinters from an Ever-changing Face

    Ulcerate: Stare into Death and be Still

    Netherlands: Zombie Techno

    Déluge: Ægo Templo

    Krallice: Mass Cathesis

    Touché Amoré: Lament

    Paysage d’Hiver: Im Wald

    Imperial Triumphant: Alphaville


    Caligula’s Horse: Rise Radiant

    Deftones: Ohms

    Vredehammer: Viperous

    Wake: Devouring Ruin

    Oranssi Pazuzu: Mestarin kynsi

    Aeternam: Al Quassam

    Anaal Nathrakh: Endarkenment

    Creature: Ex Cathedra

    Yashira: Fail to Be

    Svalbard: When I Die, Will I Get Better?

    Honourable mention to:
    Code Orange, Witnesses, Fates Warning, Mora Prokaza, Atramentus, Paradise Lost, Afsky, Sepultura, Cryptic Shift, Ingrina, Xibalba, Killer Be Killed, Drouth … and the not so metal Ulver and Myrkur.

    Best short releases of the year (both in my humble opinion something that must be checked out for their emotional weight):

    Zeal & Ardor: Wake of a Nation

    Kardashev: The Baring of Shadows

  58. In no particular order

    Cryptae – Nightmare Traversal
    Paysage D’hiver – Im Wald
    Neptunian Maximalism – Eons
    Ysgaroth – Storm Over a Black Sea
    Ak’chamel, The Giver Of Illness – The Totemist
    Skáphe – Skáphe³
    Black Curse – Endless Wound
    Slift – Ummon
    FRKSE – Desecration Anxiety ll
    Ogdens’ – Decay
    Scáth Na Déithe – The Dirge Of Endless Mourning
    Plague Organ – Orphan
    Entropy Created Consciousness – Antica Memoria di Dis
    Bruxa Maria – The Maddening
    New Primals – Horse Girl Energy
    Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin kynsi
    Ôros Kaù – Imperii Templum Aries
    Serpent Column – Endless Detainment
    Arstidir lífsins – Saga…
    Pong – 2113
    Mystruin – Calcination
    Aversio Humanitatis – Behold The Silent Dwellers
    Dèarth – To Crown All Befoulment
    Decoherence – Unitarity
    Reverorum ib Malacht – Vad Är Inte Sju Huvud?
    Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville
    In Chasms Deep – The Wind and Her Lament
    Death. Void. Terror. – To The Great Monolith II
    Psychic Graveyard – A Bluebird Vacation
    Serpent Column – Kathodos
    Bohren & Der Club Of Gore – Patchouli Blue
    Attic Ted – Kafka Dreaming
    clipping. – Visions of Bodies Being Burned
    An Isolated Mind – Self Titled
    Human Adult Band – Beyond the Time Barrier Travelers
    Algiers – There Is No Year
    Marrasmieli – Between Land And Sky
    Raspberry Bulbs – Before The Age Of Mirrors
    Casual Nun – Resort For Dead Desires

    These weren’t released this year,
    but I discovered them this year
    and they made an impact:
    Yairms – Hope’s Stable 2019
    Everything from The Peep Tempel 2009-2016
    Avida_Dollars – DMMM 2019
    Officine – Dieu 2019
    Crown Larks – Population 2017
    Slump – Flashbacks from Black Dust Country 2019
    Office Skin – Slough 2014

    • Bohren & Der Club Of Gore – Patchouli Blue has been one of my most uplifting listenings this year. Great to see it represented. Cheers!

    • I need to add the following:

      Ars Magna Umbrae – Apotheosis
      TRVSS – New Distances
      Treasure MammaL – Grammy Nominated

      I’m sure there will be more

  59. This was very tough, and is only a rough ranking of how much I enjoyed these albums. Additionally, there were others I enjoyed and other good ones I only heard once, or in part, and wasn’t able to properly judge. All in all, this was a great year for the sort of Metal I enjoy. Note that at least 19 of these releases are Finnish. Finland in particular had a stellar year.

    1. Ifernach – Waqan
    2. Duivel – Tirades uit de hel
    3. Asgrauw – Ijsval
    4. Mooncitadel – Night’s Scarlet Symphonies
    5. Vonlaus – Röð slæmra ákvarðana
    6. Korgonthurus – Kuolleestasyntynyt
    7. Totenwache – Kriegswesen
    8. Sombre Heritage – Alpha Ursae Minoris
    9. Slagmark – Purging Sacred Soils
    10. Blood Red Fog – Fields of Sorrow
    11. Nôidva – Windseller
    12. Ymir – Ymir
    13. Flagg – Nothing but Death
    14. 0 – Entity
    15. Striges – Verum Veterum
    16. October Falls – A Fall of an Epoch
    17. Kangeheet – Mentor
    18. Förgjord – Laulu kuolemasta
    19. Norrhem – Koitos
    20. Aethyrick – Gnosis
    21. Warmoon Lord / Vultyrium – Pure Cold Impurity split
    22. Árstíðir lífsins / Carpe Noctem – Aldrnari split
    23. Sielunvihollinen – Veren äänet
    24. Asenheim – Der Geist des Waldes
    25. Mavorim – Axis Mundi
    26. Mavorim / Ad Mortem – Iudicium Ultimum split
    27. Hate Forest – Hour of the Centaur
    28. Sarvekas – Of Atavistic Fury & Visions
    29. Horna – Kuoleman Kirjo
    30. Begrafven – Dödsriket
    31. Sorcier des Glaces – Un monde de glace et de sang
    32. Slagmark – Radical Malice
    33. Winterlore – Eternal Defiance
    34. Auðn – Vökudraumsins fangi
    35. Ifernach / Pan-Amerikan Native Front – Split
    36. Skáphe – Skáphe³
    37. Ildskaer – Den rædsomste nat
    38. Havukruunu – Uinuos syömein sota
    39. Ov Shadows – I djävulens avbild
    40. Ifernach – The Green Enchanted Forest of the Druid Wizard
    41. Äkth Gánahëth – Crowned in Shadows
    42. Romuvos – The Baltic Crusade
    43. Sinira – The Everlorn
    44. ORFVS – Ceremony of Darkness
    45. Fellwarden – Wreathed in Mourncloud
    46. Nexion – Seven Oracles
    47. Ovader – Wotankult
    48. Ciel Nordique – II
    49. Faustian Pact – Outojen tornien varjoissa
    50. To Conceal the Horns – Purist

    Song of the year: Ifernach – Mémoires septentionales de coureurs des bois

  60. Here is a site-specific top 35 in alphabetical order.

    I must say that for me, ‘band of the year’ was easily Hornwood Fell, with two albums on this list and another one that just missed out. They also released one of my favourite albums of 2019, and in my view, deserve more attention and recognition than they are receiving.

    2020 was also a year in which I finally stopped spending time on social media, and for that reason, blogs such as this one re-emerged as an important primary source of new and exciting music. So thanks to Islander and crew for all of the great work you do here – it is invaluable.

    Abyssidious – Murk and Malice
    ACxDC – Satan is King
    Black Curse – Endless Wound
    Bedsore – Hypnogogic Hallucinations
    Calligram – The Eye is the First Circle
    Caustic Wound – Death Posture
    Defeated Sanity – The Sanguinary Impetus
    Esoctrilihum – Eternity of Shaog
    FACELESS BURIAL – Speciation
    Fleshvessel – Bile of Man Reborn
    Gravenchalice – Apparition
    Heretical Sect – Rapturous Flesh Consumed
    Hornwood Fell – Cursed Thoughts Part 1
    Hornwood Fell – Degli Alberi e L’Acque e Notturno
    Hræ – Par semskepnur reika
    HWWAUOCH – Protest Against Sanity
    Illkynja – Saeti Salarinnar
    Kall – Brand
    Krallice – Mass Cathexis
    Lifetaker – Night Intruder
    Mystras – Castles Conquered and Reclaimed
    Of Feather and Bone – Sulfuric Disintegration
    Omnikinetic – Kinesis
    Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin kynsi
    Serpent Column – Kathados
    Skáphe – Skáphe³
    Somniate – The Meyrinkian Slumber
    Sons Of A Wanted Man – Kenoma
    Temple Of Void – The World That Was
    Ulcerate – Stare Into Death and Be Still
    Vyrion – Nil
    VOUS AUTRES – Sel Da Pierre
    WAKE – Devouring Ruin
    Warp Chamber – Implements of Excruciation
    Xenobiotic – Mordrake

  61. Hemotoxin – Restructure The Molded Mind
    Serment – Chante, ô flamme de la liberté
    Shards of Humanity – Cold Logic
    Mare Cognitum & Spectral Lore – Wanderers: Astrology of The Nine
    Cosmic Putrefaction – The Horizons Towards Which Splendour Withers
    Ancient Gate – Empire Beyond Dusk
    Esoctrilihum – Eternity of Shaog
    Thecodontion – Supercontinent
    Mystras – Castles Conquered and Reclaimed
    Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin kynsi
    Dark Fortress – Spectres from the Old World
    Silver Knife – UNYIELDING / UNSEEING
    Ifernach – The Green Enchanted Forest of the Druid Wizard
    Battle Dagorath – Abyss Horizons
    Paysage d’Hiver – Im Wald
    Havok – V
    Static-X – Project Regeneration, Vol. 1
    Undeath – Lesions of a Different Kind
    Coffin Apartment – Full Torso Apparition
    Prometheus – Resonant Echoes from Cosmos of Old
    偏執症者 (Paranoid) – Out Raising Hell
    Abyssal Ascendant – Chronicles of the Doomed Worlds, Pt. 2: Deacons of Abhorrence
    Question – Reflections of the Void
    Krallice – Mass Cathexis
    Lamp Of Murmuur – Heir Of Ecliptical Romanticism
    Afterbirth – Four Dimensional Flesh
    Horn – Mohngang
    Akhlys – Melinoë
    Stormkeep – Galdrum
    Cirith Ungol – Forever Black
    Defeated Sanity – The Sanguinary Impetus
    Afsky – Ofte jeg drømmer mig død
    Atramentus – Stygian
    Malokarpatan – Krupinské Ohne
    Worm – Gloomlord
    Proscription – Conduit
    Cytotoxin – Nuklearth
    Cryptic Shift – Visitations from Enceladus

  62. Another glorious bleak year of fantastic soundscapes. I checked out over 500 albums this year and have boiled it down to my top 100.
    1. Ulcerate – Stare into Death and Be Still
    2. Beneath The Massacre – Fearmonger
    3. Cytotoxin – Nuklearth
    4. Pyrrhon – Abscess Time
    5. Defeated Sanity – The Sanguinary Impetus
    6. Imperial Triumphant – Alphaville
    7. Wake – Devouring Ruin
    8. Abysmal Dawn – Phylogenesis
    9. Deeds of Flesh – Nucleus
    10. Akurion – Come Forth to Me
    11. Paradise Lost – Obsidian
    12. Testament – Titans Of Creation
    13. Anaal Nathrakh – Endarkenment
    14. Of Feather And Bone – Sulfuric Disintegration
    15. Incantation – Sect of Vile Divinities
    16. The Ocean – Phanerozoic II: Mesozoic I Cenozoic
    17. Black Crown Initiate – Violent Portraits of Doomed Escape
    18. Ether Coven – Everything Is Temporary Except Suffering
    19. Symbolik – Emergence
    20. Dysphoria – Primal Entropy
    21. Karmacipher – Introspectrum
    22. Exist – Egoiista
    23. Roman Ring – The Halogen
    24. Uada – Djinn
    25. Blaze of Sorrow – Absentia
    26. Encenathrakh – Thraakethraaeate Thraithraake
    27. Leeched – To Dull the Blades of Your Abuse
    28. Katalepsy – Terra Mortuus Est
    29. The Acacia Strain – Slow Decay
    30. Wormhole – The Weakest Among Us
    31. The Black Dahlia Murder – Verminous
    32. Within The Ruins – Black Heart
    33. Remnants of The Fallen – All the Wounded and Broken
    34. Krosis – A Memoir of Free Will
    35. Carrion Vael – God Killer
    36. Wastewalker – Lowborn
    37. Abigor – Totschläger (A Saintslayer’s Songbook)
    38. Warbringer – Weapons of Tomorrow
    39. Napalm Death – Throes of Joy in the Jaws of Defeatism
    40. Killer Be Killed – Reluctant Hero
    41. Grift – Budet
    42. Old Corpse Road – On Ghastly Shores Lays the Wreckage of Our Lore
    43. Together to The Stars – As We Wither
    44. Under the Pier – Puff Pieces
    45. Aronious – Perspicacity
    46. Cult Of Lilith – Mara
    47. Dira Mortis – Ancient Breath Of Forgotten Misanthropy
    48. Skeletal Remains – The Entombment Of Chaos
    49. Féleth – Depravity
    50. Young and In The Way – Ride Off and Die
    51. Inquisition – Black Mass for a Mass Grave
    52. Feastem – Graveyard Earth
    53. Oceans of Slumber – Oceans of Slumber
    54. Sylosis – Cycle of Suffering
    55. Kill the Lights – The Sinner
    56. Medico Peste – ? _The Black Bile
    57. Fornicus – Sulphuric Omnipotence
    58. Volcandra – Into the Azure
    59. Mors Principium Est – Seven
    60. Voices of Ruin – Path to Immortality
    61. Dark Tranquillity – Moment
    62. Heaven Shall Burn – Of Truth & Sacrifice
    63. Devildriver – Dealing with Demons I
    64. My Dying Bride – The Ghost of Orion
    65. Blight – Temple of Wounds
    66. Wayfarer – A Romance with Violence
    67. Dwaal – Gospel of The Vile
    68. The Merciless Concept – Sessions of Pain
    69. Krallice – Mass Cathexis
    70. Gaerea – Limbo
    71. Panzerfaust – The Suns of Perdition – Chapter II: Render unto Eden
    72. Sepultura – Quadra
    73. Exgenesis – Solve et Coagula
    74. Well of Night – The Lower Planes of Self-Abstraction
    75. Begotten – If All You Have Known Is Winter
    76. Toxaemia – Where Paths Divide
    77. VoidCeremony – Entropic Reflections Continuum: Dimensional Unravel
    78. Unmerciful – Wrath Encompassed
    79. Afterbirth – Four Dimensional Flesh
    80. Primitive Man – Immersion
    81. Reflections – Willow
    82. Thætas – Shrines To Absurdity
    83. Alarum – Circle’s End
    84. Acherontas – Psychic Death_ The Shattering of Perceptions
    85. Grimah – Intricacies of Bowed Wisdom
    86. October Falls – A Fall of An Epoch
    87. Vader – Solitude in Madness
    88. Madrost – Charring The Rotting Earth
    89. Protest The Hero – Palimpsest
    90. Coexistence – Collateral Dimension
    91. Blot – Howl From the North
    92. Intronaut – Fluid Existential Inversions
    93. Necrophobic – Dawn of The Damned
    94. Theotoxin – Fragment Erhabenheit
    95. Odraza – Rzeczom
    96. Vampire Squid – Reinventing the Eel
    97. Naglfar – Cerecloth
    98. Slave One – Omega Disciples
    99. Lantern – Dimensions
    100. Eave – Phantoms Made Permanent

    Top Ten EP’s:
    1. Rejoice! The Light Has Come – Untitled
    2. Evilyn – Inside Shells
    3. Shinda Saibo No Katamari – Ostriched Existence
    4. Inferi – Of Sunless Realms
    5. Scour – Black
    6. Carcass – Despicable
    7. Deliquesce – Engineered Frailty
    8. Ihsahn – Telemark
    9. Aborted – La Grande Mascarade
    10. Serocs – Vore

    Honorable Mentions:
    Carnifloor, Code Orange, Dawn Of Solace, Earth Rot, Korgonthurus, Mörk Gryning, Ovid’s Withering, Quasarborn, Revenge, Sons of Apollo, The Conjuration, Your Last Wish

  63. hey, never thought this music would make it to anyone’s toplist of anything. thanks a lot, i really appreciate it.

  64. This is late, but it took me forever to finish my list. I tried to balance what I listened to the most, thought was the best, and considered the most important. I know the top choice isn’t very popular one online, but it was a record that captivated me each and every listen. I really loved this record, and gave it the number 1 spot. Honestly though, it was extremely difficult to narrow this list down, and the top 40 could be jumbled up depending on the day.

    Top 20:

    1. Uada – Djinn
    2. Sepulchral Curse – Only Ashes Remain
    3. Spirit Possession – Spirit Possession
    4. Faceless Burial – Speciation
    5. Wytch Hazel – III: Pentecost
    6. Ulthar – Providence
    7. Thou / Emma Ruth Rundle – May Our Chambers Be Full
    8. Havukruunu – Uinuos Syomein Sota
    9. Undergang – Aldrig I Livet
    10. Black Curse – Endless Wound
    11. Proscription – Conduit
    12. Necrot – Mortal
    13. Gravenchalice – Apparition
    14. SVNTH – Spring In Blue
    15. Hank Von Hell – Dead
    16. Ilsa – Preyer
    17. Calligram – The Eye Is The First Circle
    18. Jupiterian – Protosapien
    19. The Black Dahlia Murder – Verminous
    20. Lantern – Dimensions

    Honorable Mentions:

    Afsky, Afterbirth, Alestorm (yeah, I know, but this year sucked, and they made me happy), Barghest, Bedsore, Black Royal, Bloodsoaked Necrovoid, Brutus, Decaying, Depravity, Eternal Champion, Eternal Rot, Exhumation, Faidra, Fornicus, Foul, Glorious Depravity, Graceless, Grace Disgraced, Haunt, Hiidenhauta, HWWAUOCH, Imperial Triumphant, Kvaen, Live Burial, Ljosazabojstwa, Mamaleek, Mare Cognitum / Spectral Lore, Mesarthim, Molde Volhal, Nekrovault, Of Wolves, Primitive Man, Pyre, Revenge, Shagor, Shed The Skin, Siege Column, SKAM

  65. Esophageal – Craving Delusions*
    Unmerciful – Wrath Encompassed
    Cytotoxin – Nuklearth
    Devangelic – Ersetu
    Deeds of Flesh – Nucleus
    Blasphemer – The Sixth Hour
    Azarath – Saint Desecration
    Belphegor – Necrodaemon Terrorsathan
    Incinerate – Sacrilegivm
    Enslavement- Filth
    Raw – Languish
    Abhorrent Castigation – On the Shores of Hell
    Scatology Secretion – Submerged in Glacial Ruin
    Decarabion – Bastard Son of Divinity
    Ominous Scriptures – The Fall of the Celestial Throne
    Sufism – Republik Rakyat Jelata
    Decayed Flesh – Eternal Misery
    Ripping Flesh – Conqueror of Cosmos
    Syphillic – Empty Nest
    Dripped- Putrescent Omniscience
    Post Mortal Possession – Catacombs of Bedlam
    Embodiment – Palingenesis
    Monumental Discharge – Unfathomable Defecation

    * released 12/27/19 and was enjoyed throughout 2020

  66. I’m terribly late, but we owe here in the Black Lodge 83 2020 album and considered for this list 245 2020 albums (sometimes listening to just a couple of songs, some other listening the full album 2 or 3 times, and listening the ones we owe at least 5 times). So, you understand, it became a job (no one is paying for)!
    Here we are, in alphabetical order:


    Best split album:

    Best EPs

    Thank you to NCS, its guest listers and its readers for giving us (me and the grey men) so much new and different stuff to listen to. An awful lot of those 245 albums considered for this list came from various end of year lists you published here.

  67. Hi, to thank you for all your lists, here are the 155 most quoted band from this topic.

    Ulcerate 24
    Wake 18
    Panzerfaust 14
    Black Curse 14
    Imperial Triumphant 13
    Sweven 12
    Serpent Column 12
    Akhlys 12
    Havukruunu 12
    Oranssi Pazuzu 10
    Esoctrilihum 10
    Cryptic Shift 10
    Afterbirth 9
    Skáphe 9
    Gaerea 9
    Paysage d’Hiver 9
    Wayfarer 9
    Uada 8
    Paradise Lost 8
    Ulthar 8
    Lamp Of Murmuur 8
    The Ocean 8
    Auðn 8
    Faceless Burial 8
    Necrot 8
    Undeath 8
    Eternal Champion 8
    Temple of Void 8
    Necrophobic 8
    Afsky 7
    Odraza 7
    Cytotoxin 7
    Defeated Sanity 7
    Convocation 7
    Atramentus 6
    Napalm Death 6
    inquisition 6
    Prison of Mirrors 6
    Beltez 6
    Cosmovore 6
    Primitive Man 6
    Proscription 6
    Skeletal Remains 6
    Valdrin 6
    Spirit Adrift 6
    Warp Chamber 6
    Svalbard 6
    Malokarpatan 6
    Lantern 6
    VoidCeremony 5
    Anaal Nathrakh 5
    Vredehammer 5
    Cosmic Putrefaction 5
    Sunken 5
    Acherontas 5
    … And Oceans 5
    Dark Tranquillity 5
    Of Feather and Bone 5
    Earth Rot 5
    Selbst 5
    Fluisteraars 5
    Ars Magna Umbrae 5
    Ifernach 5
    Kvaen 5
    Xenobiotic 5
    Thecodontion 4
    Khthoniik Cerviiks 4
    Bedsore 4
    Vonlaus 4
    Temple Nightside 4
    Calligram 4
    Árstíðir Lifsins 4
    Medico Peste 4
    Spectral Lore & Mare Cognitum 4
    MSW 4
    Svartkonst 4
    October Falls 4
    The Black Dahlia Murder 4
    Cirith Ungol 4
    Krallice 4
    Karmacipher 4
    Uprising 4
    Pyrrhon 4
    Faidra 4
    Katatonia 4
    Winterfylleth 4
    Marrasmieli 4
    LIK 4
    Dawn Of Solace 3
    Sepultura 3
    Pallbearer 3
    Death. Void. Terror. 3
    Countless Skies 3
    Deftones 3
    Neptunian maximalism 3
    Draconian 3
    Regarde Les Hommes Tomber 3
    Elder 3
    Sorcier Des Glaces 3
    Eoront 3
    Cult Of Lilith 3
    Aeternam 3
    Musmahhu 3
    Fellwarden 3
    Carnosus 3
    Aara 3
    Aversio Humanitatis 3
    Glaciation 3
    Code Orange 3
    Gloosh 3
    Skeleton 3
    Godthrymm 3
    Sylosis 3
    Graceless 3
    Thy Catafalque 3
    Gravenchalice 3
    Dark Fortress 3
    Green Carnation 3
    Mörk Gryning 3
    Grimah 3
    Naxen 3
    Hail spirit noir 3
    Dearth 3
    Ages 3
    Ovader 3
    Hellripper 3
    Circle of Ouroborus 3
    Hræ 3
    Question 3
    Beneath the Massacre 3
    Ripped to Shreds 3
    Intronaut 3
    Sepulchral Curse 3
    Just Before Dawn 3
    Sinistral King 3
    Abysmal Dawn 3
    Solstafir 3
    Killer Be Killed 3
    Coexistence 3
    Konvent 3
    Azarath 3
    Korgonthurus 3
    Cryptae 3
    Kvelertak 3
    Bâ’a 3
    Malist 3
    Void Rot 3
    Marche Funèbre 3
    Vous Autres 3
    Mesarthim 3
    Xazraug 3
    Midnight 3
    Nero di Marte 3

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