Metal Awards

Goat's Top 15 albums of 2017

  1. Emptiness - Not for Music
    This fascinated and obsessed me too much not to place it this highly. Metal that is at once creepy, sinister, gothic and compelling, this gets under your skin like an infection and stays there.
  2. The Ruins of Beverast - Exuvia
    Experimental black metal at its atmospheric best, and nearly number one...
  3. Immolation - Atonement
    The actual best death metal album of the year. Eternally underrated, Immolation are gods of the genre.
  4. Obituary - Obituary
    The second-best death metal album of the year, the veterans showing they still have what it takes.
  5. Iced Earth - Incorruptible
    Good enough to rate this highly, Schaffer and co proved they still had it after a previous disappointing outing. Clear the way, indeed.
  6. Paradise Lost - Medusa
    Goth metal heroes prove their worth, yet again. This band are in what is possibly the greatest run of their career.
  7. Voyager - Ghost Mile
    I kept coming back to this, a tremendously fun listen.
  8. Pain of Salvation - In the Passing Light of Day
    Prog heroes return with a terrific concept album.
  9. Progenie Terrestre Pura - oltreLuna
    The Italian space program continues to bear fascinating results.
  10. Ayreon - The Source
    Not the best from this project, but a delightful reminder of how good it can be.
  11. Abigor / Nightbringer / Thy Darkened Shade / Mortuus - Split
    Four great black metal bands, pushing the boundaries and delighting the listener. What more could you ask.
  12. Akercocke - Renaissance in Extremis
    Britain's finest Satanic gentlemen are back, albeit changed in image. Thankfully their music is still terrific.
  13. Ulver - The Assassination of Julius Caesar
    Synth pop has never sounded so good.
  14. Witherfall - Nocturnes and Requiems
    Surprisingly excellent prog, I hope the boys keep this project moving.
  15. Pallbearer - Heartless
    Doom done right.
Goat's Top 5 surprises of 2017

  1. Trivium - The Sin & The Sentence
    I think this band has finally made an album I unreservedly love. At last, the hype is real.
  2. Ex Eye - Ex Eye
    Not quite the hallowed fusion of jazz and metal that the prophets promised, but a damn good exploration of territory in the rarely travelled terrain between the two.
Goat's Disappointment(s) of 2017

  1. Electric Wizard - Wizard Bloody Wizard
    Surprisingly pedestrian from a band that should sound like Lucifer's brain on huge amounts of dope. Awful cover art, too.
  2. Gone Is Gone - Echolocation
    Supergroups are rarely this disappointing.
  3. Sólstafir - Berdreyminn
    This band continues to be less than half as interesting as everyone keeps telling me! Maybe it's me?
  4. Suffocation - ...of the Dark Light
    New York's finest drop the ball. Not bad, but not up to their standard.
Goat's words about 2017
  1. Yet another year in which music helped keep me sane, despite my near-abandonment of it at times. It’s a completely unfickle lover, always there when you need it with not a word of complaint for your neglect -- and neglect I did, failing to review many excellent albums, including but not limited to the following bands:

    Body Count, Incantation, The Obsessed, Pyrrhon, Goatwhore, With the Dead, Dying Fetus, Cradle of Filth, Krallice, Subterranean Masquerade, Enslaved, Almanac, Execration, Godflesh, Anubis Gate, Leprous, Byzantine, Cavalera Conspiracy, Cannibal Corpse, Fleshkiller, Taake, Scour, Argus, Sorceror, Iron Monkey, 36 Crazyfists, Big Big Train, Chelsea Wolfe

    I promise to do better next year (and maybe write up some of these, if I find the necessary moments of calm in this ever-chaotic thing called life to do so).

    RIP -- Warrel Dane, Martin E Ain, Chris Cornell, Negru