Dec 282013

(We welcome back guest contributor and fellow blogger BreadGod with another of his year-end lists. I’ve taken the liberty of adding full-album streams for all of his picks.)

The metal scene sort of blew its collective load back in 2012, what with all that fear of the apocalypse and whatnot. They released a bunch of awesome albums in anticipation of an event that never happened. This means that there wasn’t a lot of good metal this year. Of course, that was only if you were looking at the topmost layer of the underground. If you took the time to dig deeper like I did, then you will have found lots of awesome new releases. Here are my top ten releases of 2013. Enjoy.


#10: AbyssalNovit enim Dominus qui sunt eius

The list begins with the year’s first album. On New Year’s Day, I received an e-mail from the band Abyssal that contained nothing but a download link and a single sentence: “The time has come.” When I pushed play, I was instantly enshrouded in a miasma of chaotic evil. It’s far more diabolical than their debut, Denouement. The production is a colossal wall of sound that will crush the life out of you, the drums offer up both ravenous blast beats and slow and sinister doom rhythms, the vocals sound like the grumbling of an ancient and vile entity that lurks in the deepest reaches of the earth, and the guitars run the gamut from vicious black metal tremolo riffs put through a death metal filter to slow and wicked chugs. I regret not putting these guys in my top ten list last year, because they have made something that is both evil and grand. Continue reading »

Dec 272013

(We convinced “MiQe” Löfberg,  vocalist for the long-running Belgian metal band In-Quest, to contribute to our year-end LISTMANIA series, and here’s what he wrote.)

Since I am not anything of a reviewer I’ll leave the real deal to the pro’s and will keep my comments more or less short and to the point. I rant enough on stage! 😉

To end the year of 2013, here are 13 albums and some of my personal favorites from the past year. So here it goes, in no particular order:

1. HypocrisyEnd of Disclosure

Peter Tägtgren has always had interesting bands/projects and I always enjoyed Hypocrisy. Very strong new album.

Top track: “End of Disclosure” Continue reading »

Dec 272013

(NCS staff writer DGR makes the third ex-TNOTB writer of the day whose year-end list we’re rolling out. Read on… )

Ah, 2013 draws to a close, and you know what that means right? Its time for DGR to unleash his massive list of bullshit what he done liked in 2013! This year is no different, of course — I cut a bunch of categories out in order to streamline the madness somewhat, yet still managed to create a massive clusterfuck of words. I tend to write my stuff for folks that are trapped at work, so I do apologize for anyone who is glancing at this thinking that it’ll be a quick fifteen=minute read — because there is a fucking ton of music on this list.

It almost looks like if you put out a disc in 2013, then I probably liked it, but that’s not the case… mostly because I didn’t listen to a lot of music in 2013, and I even give those folks some credit at the very bottom. If you haven’t heard many of these releases, then I am happy to expose you to them, and if you have and enjoy them already and are just validating your opinion through your chosen NCS cipher, hey, let’s pop a champagne bottle and celebrate our excellent taste over the other jackbags that claim to write for this shitshow.

I’ve actually included some non-metal breathers as well, for those of us who may be suffocating under the weight of all this heavy metal. Let the chaos begin! Here is my list of Shit What I Done Liked In 2013 (thanks byrd for the title!), beginning with the honorable mentions. Continue reading »

Dec 262013

(One of the guest lists that I most anticipate at this time of year is by Tr00 Nate, a former contributor to The Number of the Blog and a student of the more underground releases each year. We’re happy he agreed to return to our site with his picks for 2013.)

Before we even get started, I would like to take some time to recognize Battle Beast for making the funniest/stupidest album of the year. This thing isn’t good but it totally makes me laugh.

2013 seemed to go by really fast. Maybe it’s just because I was really busy all year. Whatever the case may be, 2013, like pretty much every year, saw a boatload of good to great releases. And despite me trying to make myself more scarce online, Islander managed to rope me in to write a year-end list for his website, so I’ve sat down, during the last few weeks of school while also attempting to move (cause this is obviously the best time to write things for the internet), to write up. I originally came up with a top 20 but felt that didn’t quite cover all the things I liked this year, so before that you can see, in alphabetical order, all the honorable mentions (unless I forgot about them, like Gorguts and Immolation). Continue reading »

Dec 262013

While continuing to post our own year-end lists of 2013’s best metal as chosen by our staff and numerous guest writers, we also continue to make room for lists published by selected ‘zines and so-called “big platform” web sites with dramatically larger audiences than metal-only sites like this one. This morning one appeared that we’ve been waiting for:’s list of “The Top 40 Metal Albums of 2013”.

Pitchfork has been around since 1996 and now boasts “a fiercely loyal audience of more than 5 million unique visitors each month”. Metal is only one of the genres of music to which Pitchfork devotes attention (and certainly one of the smallest in terms of audience), though because of Pitchfork’s size it has been the platform for many significant metal song and album premieres this year. Its Top 40 list was compiled by Pitchfork editor Brandon Stosuy as part of his ongoing Show No Mercy column. Whatever else you may think of Pitchfork’s main musical coverage, I think Show No Mercy is worth reading.

Stosuy’s list includes explanations for the top 25 picks, plus sample songs, and you can go HERE to check out all of that. Via that same link you can also see the lists assembled by current and former Pitchfork contributors Grayson Currin, Drew Daniel, Kim Kelly, Andy O’Connor, Hank Shteamer, and Zoe Camp.

After the jump, I’m just going to embed the Top 40 list itself, with a few thoughts. As always, we encourage you to leave your own reactions in the Comment section. Continue reading »

Dec 262013

(Our friend Professor D. Grover the XIIIth, the founder of the late, lamented The Number of the Blog as well as the proprietor of Occulus Infernus, agreed to share with us his list of lists for 2013.)

Greetings and salutations, friends. It’s your Honorable Professor returning to bestow upon you the ever-expansive list of my favorite releases of the year. Due to increased responsibilities from my new employment and my newborn son (the handsome little devil you see pictured), I will be keeping the descriptions of most of these releases brief, briefer than usual, but I will still give my best attempt to justify just why you should listen to them anyway.

Also, and I realize that this list is being published at No Clean Singing, but this list is in no way, shape, or form a list dedicated solely to metal. I listen to a wide variety of music, and to omit everything that’s not metal would be to do myself and all of you a great disservice.


This is everything that wasn’t long enough to be considered an album. In a few circumstances, it’s only a song or two. A number of these are available for free, and I’ve attempted to include links of some sort for each regardless of price. Continue reading »

Dec 252013

(I once again successfully prevailed upon Ben C, the proprietor of the immensely entertaining Church of the Riff, to share with us his year-end list of 2013′s best albums.)

Looks like I made it through another year more or less intact, with a whole new collection of music to boot. 2013 proved to be a pretty solid year for me, both in new releases and discovering old classics. It was also the year I decided to plunk some money down on a second-hand stereo setup that doesn’t suck, so I’ve been able to not only rattle my brain but the neighbour’s as well.

The next 15 albums cover the majority of metal’s extended family, from grindcore, sludge, and doom all the way through to throwback stoner rock. I also decided to put together my choices for riff, chorus, and solo of the year – an idea I had been toying with since I published my last list. So without wasting any more time, here are 15 more albums some random guy on the internet thought were pretty swell. Continue reading »

Dec 242013

(In this latest installment of our year-end LISTMANIA series, we welcome a guest writer who goes by the name doGbreath, with a different kind of list.)

This is my playlist.
There are many like it, but this one is MINE.
Without me, my playlist is nothing.
Without my playlist, I am nothing.

Ah, the mighty playlist. Conveyor of taste, provocateur. There are many like it, but this one is mine.

It’s the purest form of democracy, the art of music. You consume what you like and everybody else can swing. It’s purely subjective, an invitation to judge a book by it’s cover, but with the advent of the Internet and world-wide constant and immediate access, we as humans have taken communication deeper, to a more fundamental level. We speak to each other through music. Words have become passé.

The meme is king, social media is queen, and the playlist is the joker and fool, always speaking truth to power. Oh, your pop diva bullshit act just sold ten million albums? Fuck you, I have a thousand bands here that actually play instruments, have better production than your pseudo-teen bitch, write riffs that rip your face off, AND bang hotter chicks than her as a recreational sport back in their home countries. Their albums will live forever, while your flash-in-the-pan pop construct will fade into obscurity the instant the publicity train stops to refuel. I listen to shit that’s more melodic than their melodies, listen to lyrics and vocal delivery with more emotion than they can photo-shop and auto-tune, and ingest imagery and artistry through cover art that stretch the imagination into places that horrify the general public. That’s fucking art people, in all it’s contentious forms, defined. Continue reading »

Dec 242013

(Once again we are pleased to deliver unto you this year-end list by Happy Metal Guy, whose name you may recognize from the Angry Metal Guy blog, and whose other name (Dane Prokofiev) you may recognize from assorted other places.)

In the spirit of Khristmas, there is no mean, hierarchical list from Happy Metal Guy this year that ranks bands in a certain order of merit. Just like those annoying middle school camps with anti-climactic inter-group games that end with everyone winning, Happy Metal Guy has decided to go along with the festive mood and allow every band whose record he listened to and liked this year to be in its own league. ‘Tis the season to be jolly, altruistic, and spreading some e-love via some blog post that will probably never be read by most of the bands mentioned in it after all. Yohoho, everybody—but Happy Metal Guy—wins!

Some of the category names below might seem negative at first glance, but just know that Happy Metal Guy uses each and every one of those in a negatively positive way. Rest assured that all of the records mentioned below entertained Happy Metal Guy enough to be remembered and shortlisted. Some albums like Shining’s One One One and Thrawsunblat’s Wanderer on the Continent of Saplings were initially going to be mentioned here, but they have since lost their appeal to Happy Metal Guy for some reason. Continue reading »

Dec 232013

(In this post, NCS staff writer BadWolf delivers his list of the year’s best albums.)

Every year I make one of these lists, and every year it comes out different, probably because my feelings on year-end lists changes. Honestly, guys, we’ve had an absolute wealth of information on this site and others over the past month, and more album streams than anyone could possibly wade through (though, god help me, I’m trying to listen to everything Austin Lunn recommended). I know I’ve missed tons of underground shit. Honestly, If i’m going to recommend anything obscure, I’d rather do so by itself, in a full review, than buried in one of these lists. Ultimately, I didn’t want to give anything a meaningless rank. Rather, I wanted to highlight those albums that I feel are worth revisiting this year.

So, here they are, my top albums of the year, presented in alphabetical order, and at the end my personal favorite (which should come as no surprise). Bon appetit.

Altar of PlaguesTeethed Glory and Injury

I had disregarded this band before—the previous Altar records felt like retreads of sounds I preferred from other bands. But this thing! On their final record, Altar took an oblique, rhythmic left turn into some of the most upsetting-but-fascinating music in the past few years. I’m sad to see them go, but what a send-off.

Continue reading »