Wow. It's been a prolific year for me, eh?
...Okay, it hasn't. I've slacked like a motherfucker this year when it comes to writing articles for Brutalism, but between releasing a full-length album, writing another one and somehow bumblefucking my way into Hellbastard, I've barely had time to scratch my balls, let alone jerk it to some sweet metal albums. As such, this year's list is a bit shorter than the last one; no Garnish awards, no DaVinci award (which probably would have gone to Wretched Soul anyway) and no pictures of my stupid fucking face adorning the bottom of the page... but annual summaries ARE tradition at this point, so I've managed to scrape together my experiences from what little I've... well, experienced this year. There was an absolute cuntload of albums that I totally missed or only heard a single or two from, hence the lack of garnish this time around, but I'm sure I'll get around to them once my boss lets me out of the fucking slave pit for longer than a daddy long-legs' lifespan.
I would say I'll make up it up you all with next year's article, but like a political campaign, that promise would be naught but a sinister lie, concocted to deceive you and distract you from the fact that I'm actually on tour, so... uh, you'll just get whatever the hell I have time to write, really. I have to extend my gratitude to my co-writers and my boss, Cap'n Twan Sibon, for their frankly baffling patience and support in my endeavors, not to mention their tolerance for all my wanking jokes (yeah... jokes...) throughout the year. Top lads, you all are, and I'm sorry for the mess I left in the bathroom.
*ahem* On with the article!
8. Sodom - Decision Day
While it's still not within two strokes of a gnat's cock of 2010's In War And Pieces (then again, few things in this world are), Sodom's newest album - when it finally fucking arrived - is a definite improvement upon the extremely lackluster Epitome of Torture. I finally got to witness them live this year, too!
7. Superjoint - Caught Up in the Gears of Application
White wine aside, Superjoint's newest album (dropping the 'ritual' suffix for legal reasons) is everything I wanted it to be; short, heavy, catchy, aggressive, and fucking fun. It was at risk of falling flat and sounding like a shallow imitation of past glories, but they delivered what could be the definitive Superjoint record. Needless to say, I did nazi that comi- SHIT!!*
6. Asphyx - Incoming Death
It's an Asphyx album through and through, if you're not sure of what to expect at this point then you might want to check into the nearest hospital, because you're clearly suffering severe brain damage. Perhaps not quite as memorable and suffocatingly crushing as Deathhammer was, but a mighty release nonetheless.
5. Poison Idea - 2016 EP
I do love me some hardcore, and Poison Idea are the fucking best at it. Last year's Confuse & Conquer - their first album in nine years, and their first since the death of the mighty riffster, Pig Champion - was positively sublime and still gets played very, very frequently in my household. The new release is pretty much more of the same, but that's why it's so good; if it ain't broke, right? Physical copies are only available on vinyl, but pick it up digitally and enjoy for yourselves. Kings of punk indeed.
4. Memoriam - The Hellfire Demos
Including a two-song demo on this list might be considered cheating, but the next award is going to a fucking single, so what do I care? A band composed of former members from Bolt Thrower and Benediction is nothing short of a winning combination, and this small taste of what we can expect from the upcoming album (on Nuclear Blast, no less) does nothing but solidify that opinion. Though I missed the band live this year, and suffered severe psychological trauma due to a chilli sauce incident that may or may not have invovled Karl Willets**, this vinyl release has done nothing but build up massive amounts of hype for what we're in store for. R.I.P. Martin Kearns.
3. Echelon - The Brimstone Aggrandizement
The dynamic duo do it again! The hundredth Ingram-Johansson collaboration in as many nanoseconds, this is yet another prime example of death metal done at its satanic best, being slicker, catchier, heavier, and more sesquipedalian (HA! Figure that one out!) this time around. More importantly, like their previous releases, The Phallus Embiggening has an album title I can routinely abuse to make myself chuckle and put myself at high risk of mysterious Dingram-related injury. Hurrah!
2. Gehennah - Too Loud to Live, Too Drunk to Die
Jeeeeesus fuck, okay, okay, WHAT? WHEN? How did these Swedish assholes fly under my radar for so long?! This album is an absolute behemoth of riffs, marrying thrash, punk, black metal and straight-up rock 'n' roll in a manner that the great lemmy himself would shed a tear of pride over. If you don't fall in love with this album the instant you hit play, kindly do me a favour and fuck yourself with something abnormally large. Is it a bit unoriginal? Sure, but like a good old stranglewank, it's utterly fucking exhilerating. All hail Gehennah!
1. Wretched Soul - The Ghost Road
...Yeah, it's alright.
Machine Head - Is There Anybody Out There? (Single)
Wow. This is fucking bollocks.
I know full well that Onslaught have legitimate reasons for delaying their new album, I'm just being an impatient shithead in hopes that perhaps publicly nagging them enough might make them hurry the fuck up with it. No, I'm not sorry.
Lemmy Kilmister (and Motörhead)
Though Lemmy passed away on December 28th 2015, I'd submitted last year's summary before then, and such, he didn't get a mention. That's being rectified now. The respect and admiration this writer has for Lemmy is unfathomable, and these past couple of months - loving known as "Motörhead Season" in the UK, since they would always tour here around November/December - have been extremely depressing. Living in a world without Lemmy and Motörhead is fucking hollow. The man was the cool dad for everyone in the rock, metal, and punk communities... it sucks, man. We love you, Lem. More than you will ever know.
That being said, it'd be shitty of me to not acknowledge the fact that 2016 has taken a lot of wonderful, talented people besides Lemmy, but christ almighty, I can't handle all of these fucking emotions as it is. If I started reeling off the list, I'd never get this article finished and just end up crying myself into despair.
The entirety of 2016. Fuck you, 2016. You cunt.
*That was a joke, thanks for coming.
**That, however, was not!