9.Suffering Mind/Neon Hole- Split
Our favorite Polish grinders offer up nearly 4 minutes of the most consistent grind around. Neon Hole's not breaking new crust, but the death metaly grind chaos of their side is just enough to keep up with Suffering Kielbasa.
8.Pilgrim - Forsaken Man
Old is new again, as Pilgrim fly under the radar of bands trying to recapture earlier magic of stale genres. Forsaken Man is a well executed and riff barrel of doomy goodness.
7.Short Walk - Don't Be One
A reminder to the scene that power violence started from punk music, Short Walk are off the wall with this light-hearted thrashfest of a release.
6.Mutilation Rites - Demo (2011)
Thrashy chops, memorable compositions and great production show this NYC group's ready for the big leagues. Look for them at the forefront of the usbm scene soon.
5.Ash Borer/Fell Voices - Split 12"
What else is there to say besides there are two of the best black metal bands around? Long, winding, and organic spindles of thread and sewn between the two of these West Coast deities.
4.Vastum - Carnal Law
Vastum's demo/debut showcases a picture perfect reflection of early death metal channeled into one entity. Riffs reminiscent of Dismember, rhythm and attack familiar to Cianide, and an overall gloom that brings to mind Incantation. Far more than worship, Vastum's ritual form of blasphemy belongs at the top of what passes for death metal these days.
3.Protestant - Stalemate
Protestant's proper check in to 2011 has been yet another solid slab of metallic hardcore that's way more fulfilling than you'd expect an EP to be. Dynamic takes like the opener "Nothing Left" have as much to mosh to as there is to pump your fist and sing along to. A mature and well rounded release from a band that's melded the angst and violence of hardcore with the melodies and intricacies of metal.
2.Ruin Lust - Demo
Ruin Lust's Cyclopean sound burns not only in it's visceral songwriting, but also in the pure animosity within each member's respective instrument. Not since Teitanblood's Seven Chalices has a band sounded so powerfully dark and violent with drums like turbulent storms and vocals that coincide with animalistic slaughter. A step above your average Blasphemy worship, Ruin Lust's laconic demo drowns out the light and thunders in the darkness.
1.Massive Attack Vs. Burial - Four Walls/Paradise Circus
0. Teitanblood - Purging Tongues
I don't even know if this is out here in the States, if I'll even be able to buy it, or whatever; but I'm going to do something completely illogical and say this is the best of the year even though I have only this to go on...
"'Purging Tongues' is the revelation of blood-stained truth from behind the wall of life. Death Metal told in blind voices, guided by mute vision from the bottomless pit."