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Allmusic 2019

Year In Review

The best metal albums of the year included Baroness soaring to new heights on 'Gold & Grey,' Torche's melding of heaviness with sweetness on 'Admission,' and Rammstein approaching something resembling maturity on the band's long-awaited self-titled album. Records from Russian Circles, Alcest, Swallow the Sun, and Helms Alee also warranted special mention.

3Teeth

Metawar

Exposing the horrors of modern society's sins, the industrial metal upstarts deliver a peak in their catalog.

Alcest

Spiritual Instinct

This swirling, churning set builds on the more aggressive character of Kodama in pursuing the ends of blackgaze.

Astronoid

Astronoid

Sophomore LP that elevates the New England band's dream-thrash sound with a tighter, grander vision.

Baroness

Gold & Grey

With new guitarist Gina Gleason, the band deliver their most diverse, kaleidoscopic, intricate release to date.

Blut aus Nord

Hallucinogen

Normandy's premier experimental black metal outfit enter a new exploratory musical phase without forsaking their origins.

Born of Osiris

The Simulation

Nearly four years after Soul Sphere, the Chicago outfit simultaneously go back to basics and push the envelope.

Bring Me the Horizon

Amo

Genre-bending sixth effort from the English quintet that continues their evolution away from metalcore.

Devin Townsend

Empath

Rock's most chameleon-like polymath offers a maximalist, startling aural view of his entire soundworld simultaneously, accompanied by a stellar cast.

DragonForce

Extreme Power Metal

Great Britain's ultimate power metal band return sounding revitalized, refreshed, and more athletic than ever.

Dream Theater

Distance over Time

The New York quintet refocuses, goes back to basics, and delivers a gem that's full of aggression, great writing, and inspired playing.

Earth

Full Upon Her Burning Lips

On the occasion of its 30th anniversary, Olympia, Washington's power drone outfit juxtaposes its rifftastic roots with harmonic discovery.

Helms Alee

Noctiluca

The Puget Sound metal trio's fifth studio effort feels both streamlined and expansive; it's their most multi-faceted and majestic outing to date.

Killswitch Engage

Atonement

With all lineage trademarks on display alongside new production techniques and sonics, the band thrashes and burns through 11 new songs.

King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard

Infest the Rats Nest

The ever-prolific band dive headfirst into riff-heavy, thrash-adjacent metal, composing a doomy tale about the death of Earth and what happens after.

KMFDM

Paradise

Angst-packed set from the industrial-dance veterans is a call-to-arms to save the world.

Korn

The Nothing

Reeling from his wife's death, Jonathan Davis pulls his bandmates into the void with this intense career peak.

Lacuna Coil

Black Anima

Emotionally dense ninth set from the Italian goth metal crew sheds theatrics for soul-baring vulnerability.

Lindemann

F&M

Sophomore set from the industrial metal pair abandons their debut's camp in favor of theatrical, emotional depth.

Mono

Nowhere Now Here

Japan's iconic post-rockers celebrate 20 years with a new drummer and electronics on their powerful, emotionally wrenching tenth album.

Motorpsycho

The Crucible

The trio pick up where The Tower left off with a tightly focused yet sprawling set that crisscrosses past and present to create the future.

Of Mice & Men

Earth & Sky

An expertly crafted and undeniably hefty slab of grade-A melodic hardcore.

Opeth

In Cauda Venenum

The Swedish band have left metal completely to pursue their own brand of 21st century progressive rock, and are heavier than ever.

Papa Roach

Who Do You Trust?

The hooky, well-balanced 11th studio album from the California rap-rock stalwarts.

Pelican

Nighttime Stories

The post-metal instrumentalists' sixth full-length effort showcases the band at their funereal best.

Philary

I Complain

Harsh and melodic metal-shoegaze-indie hybrid made with skill and deep feels by a member of Stove.

Queensr├┐che

The Verdict

On their third album with vocalist Scott La Torre, Seattle's favorite metal sons sound reinvigorated and in full articulation of their prog metal identity.

Rammstein

Rammstein

After a decade, the reinvigorated German metal sextet return with one of their best and catchiest efforts to date.

Russian Circles

Blood Year

Recorded with Converge's Kurt Ballou, Russian Circles' seventh studio album is one of their most unmistakably raw, direct releases.

Sleeping with Sirens

How It Feels to Be Lost

Course-correcting LP from the melodic post-hardcore crew returns them to a thrilling comfort zone.

Slipknot

We Are Not Your Kind

The masked Iowans sixth full-length effort sees a confident and apoplectic Slipknot in full command of their craft.

Sunn O)))

Life Metal

On their first recording since Kannon, the power riff drone masters enlist Steve Albini in tearing light out of the blackness.

Swallow the Sun

When a Shadow Is Forced into the Light

Guitarist/composer Juha Raivio penned these grief-laden songs to make sense of his life partner's death. The band illumines them with shadowy grandeur.

The Devil Wears Prada

The Act

A career-defining evolution for the Ohio metalcore crew that pushes genre boundaries and atmospheric scope.

Tool

Fear Inoculum

Long-awaited LP finds the enigmatic prog-metal outfit older, wiser, and at the peak of their craft.

Torche

Admission

The Floridian doom-pop quartet's fifth full-length effort administers seismic confections that vary in sweetness but always satisfy.

Volbeat

Rewind, Replay, Rebound

The Danish-American quartet re-channel the ghosts of arena rock's past and emerge with their strongest collection of songs to date.

Whitechapel

The Valley

On its seventh full-length, Tennessee's best known metal outfit bring their progressive and death metal ambitions to the fore with excellent results.

Russian Circles