Jan 182023

Like yesterday’s installment of this list, today’s lucky 13th grouping doesn’t have much rhyme or reason to it. I mean, all these songs are here because I found them all highly infectious and very good in different ways, but I sure won’t claim that they have many other connections.

Oh, I guess I should mention that all three happened to be either songs or videos we premiered at NCS, though that’s not the reason I picked them.


I feel honored every time someone asks us to host a music premiere, but I admit I was especially excited when we were asked to premiere the come-back album of this Danish death metal band last year. Not only did it represent the return of a group who made a heavy mark in the old annals of death metal with their 1992 debut A Serenade of Agony, it also featured Dan Swanö stepping in again to fill the session vocal role, as he did under the name Day Disyraa for that 1992 debut. And the new album also turned out to be really fucking good — an opinion I attempted to justify at great length in a review accompanying the premiere. Continue reading »

Jan 172023


Welcome to Part 12 of this ever-expanding list. More often that not, I’ve had some kind of organizing principle for the songs collected in previous installments, even if it’s been nothing more than the letters which begin the bands’ names.

Today I don’t have any kind of thematic or stylistic grouping. It’s just three songs I really enjoyed from last year and thought should be on this list.

Continue reading »

Jan 162023

Starting the third week of this annual songfest I picked three that go together so well, in addition to being infectious standouts on their own. It happens that two of them were also presented by two of my favorite videos of 2022.


In putting together these lists there’s always been a bit of confusion in my mind about what to do with songs that premiered in one year from albums not due for release until the following year. Here’s a case in point: Enslaved‘s new album Heimdal isn’t due out until March 3rd of this year, but the song “Kingdom” from that album debuted in August of last year. So should it be considered for the 2022 edition of this list or should I wait a year and make it a candidate for the 2023 list?

I don’t think I’ve had any consistent policy on this issue, though in general I hate waiting. In this case the song was first released as a stand-alone single almost three months before the album was even announced, so that seems like adequate justification for putting it on the 2022 list now. Continue reading »

Jan 132023

For the third time in this series I tried to make my decision process easier by just focusing on songs on the candidate list by bands whose names begin with the same letter. And I couldn’t resist the temptation to make the selection worm-ridden.


What an enormous near-Halloween surprise this band’s Bluenothing EP was. With expectations extremely high based on the burgeoning appeal of Worm‘s Foreverglade album, they satisfied fan hunger by deciding to throw a curveball at their faces.

The A-side consisted of two previously un-used tracks from the Foreverglade recording sessions, embellished by the added performance of new Worm guitarist Phil Tougas (of First Fragment, VoidCeremony, Chthe-ilist, and Hulder [live]) in his new guise as Wroth Septentrion. That alone made those songs sound different, but even more different were the B-side tracks, with the first of those (“Invoking The Dragonmoon”) functioning as a lead-in to the sheer necromantic spectacle of the second one (“Shadowside Kingdom”), which one would guess was the true inspiration for Brad Moore‘s amazing cover art. Continue reading »

Jan 122023

The Otolith

I don’t need to say this to longer-term readers, but somehow we still pick up new ones, so for their benefit: Despite the name of our site, which has always been somewhat tongue-in-cheek rather than absolutely literal, we do write about metal that includes singing rather than exclusively growling, gagging, and shrieking. Mind you, the exceptions must be earned.

In light of the foregoing, it should not be a huge shock that this Most Infectious Song list includes songs with singing. I’ve added three of them today, and not only with singing but all of them with women singing. I found all three songs to be highly memorable, and the kind that I’ve enjoyed revisiting.

And for those of you who (like me) don’t have a high tolerance for singing in heavy music, the singing is not only very good here, it’s also paired up with more extreme voices in two of the songs. Continue reading »

Jan 112023


The theme of today’s installment of our 2022 Most Infectious Song list is:  THE BEATINGS WILL CONTINUE UNTIL MORALE IMPROVES.


I’m noticing, as you may have noticed, that I’m being influenced in my choices for this list by excellent videos. That happened again in my selection of Meshuggah‘s song “Broken Cog” from their massive (and massively long) 2022 album Immutable.

Well, you might say, “The Abysmal Eye” had a hell of a video too, and that song is a more prototypical riff-driven ‘banger than the doomier and more atmospheric “Broken Cog” (to borrow some phrases from Andy Synn‘s nuanced review of Immutable, so I guess I ought to add a little more explanation. Continue reading »

Jan 102023

Not for the first time, and it won’t be the last time, I picked today’s three additions to this list by focusing on song candidates by bands whose names begin with the same letter. That made the selection process less mind-boggling for me. It’s not a recipe for overall success, because I don’t have enough days left to cover every letter in the alphabet, and because not all letters are equally deserving in this context. But it worked well for today, when these three bands jumped out at me as I gazed at the Gs. Or, we could say I managed to find the G spot.


Angels Hung From the Arches of Heaven was another album where we could throw a dart at the track list and come up with a song for this list wherever it landed. As DGR wrote in his extensive review, it’s another testament to a level of consistency that has made Goatwhore a “cultural touchstone within the heavy metal music community,” providing “big riffs, big sections, and room-filling music matched equally in terms of heaviness,” and with “just enough surprise to keep things exciting”. Continue reading »

Jan 092023

One week of this list behind us, a new week ahead, and we begin it with a trio of songs from albums that made blockbuster impacts on many of us who toil away at this site.


More often than not when you have an album as good as Complete Control, you’ll have more than one song that might qualify as “infectious”. That is certainly true of the latest full-length by Misery Index. No shock there, because this band has so much talent in the ranks that it would be unfair if extreme metal bands were in competition with each other (at some brutishly rudimentary economic level, you might think they’re in competition for limited consumer dollars, but if any underground bands think that way I’m pretty sure Misery Index isn’t one of them). Continue reading »

Jan 062023

Can you see what I did for this fifth Part of the list? After spending minutes scanning up and down the alphabetized collection of more than 500 song candidates I still have left, and feeling my vision begin to blur, I let my orbs drift up to the top where all the A’s are. Only 42 songs up there.

That’s right, 42 songs just by bands whose names begin with A, but it still made it a bit easier to focus. And having focused, the following three songs jumped out at me from memory. (Don’t worry, this isn’t the last time you’ll see an A-band on this list.)

By coincidence, or maybe not, all 3 of them are high-speed, high-intensity tracks that involve some blazing guitar work. In other words, if your ass happens to be dragging, these will fix you right up and propel you into the weekend ready to fight the world (doesn’t mean you’ll win, but you’ll make a good showing). Continue reading »

Jan 052023

We’ve made our way up to Part 4 of this evolving list, and so far I’ve managed to keep to the plan of posting a new installment every day since I started.

This is one of those days when there’s no rhyme or reason to the grouping. Stylistically, the three songs have almost nothing in common, other than (of course) that in my judgment they’re all infectious. But even there, the reasons for the infectiousness are also different, as you’ll learn for yourselves.


Tear Down This Holy Mountain” is another rarity for this list, an unusually long song that I still find infectious despite its length, or actually because of what happens during all those 11 1/2 minutes. I’m not alone in that respect, since the song received a lot of nominations from our readers, as well as from my compatriot DGR. And to be honest, the song is such a remarkable artistic achievement that I’d feel churlish not finding a place for it, even on a list where artistic achievement isn’t the main measure of success. Continue reading »