Featured ArticlesNews & OpinionThe Grym Hessian’s Top 100 Metal Albums Of 2020

Darren Lewis1 month ago21635 min

I  honestly did not expect to post an unprecedented 100 albums on my honor roll for this most tumultuous year of 2020, but COVID-19 and overall societal turbulence seemed to bring out the best in the heavy metal universe, hessians of myriad disciplines, specialties, and generations getting prolific without sacrificing quality. Or were they simply not deterred by the zeitgeist as opposed to being inspired by or forced to react to it? Perhaps it’s some of both. While isolation and current affairs have each been known to serve as catalysts or drivers for genius artistic statements, creativity sometimes comes out of a vacuum no matter what is happening in the world.

Nonetheless, a number of these acts have gifted us generously and unexpectedly with utter masterstrokes while others quietly deposited their usual top-shelf records as if it were their very nature to do so. The worldwide metal scene is certainly not experiencing a shortage of unfailingly reliable and highly capable artists from every genre and offshoot. The abundance is staggering! All of it bodes well for the coming decade. 

Also, readers may notice that I have never before listed two albums from a single band on one year-end list! This happened twice! Musicians and songwriters from across the spectrum have certainly been busy during their captivity amidst a global pandemic. 

As always, look to your online outlets, the record label information provided in parentheses, and your local brick-and-mortar retailers to purchase and/or hear whichever releases on the Top 100 list that you are not familiar with yet. So be sure to click on those hyperlinks I’ve given or use your favored internet search engines. And once again, the mighty Metal Archives/Encyclopedia Metallum website proved to be incredibly valuable in this annual endeavor.

Now, allow me to present The Grym Hessian’s Top 100 Metal Albums – Class Of 2020! 

1. Lady Beast-The Vulture’s Amulet (Reaper Metal Productions)
2. Haunt-Mind Freeze (Shadow Kingdom)
3. Haunt-Flashback (Church Recordings)
4. VampireRex (Century Media)
5. WarbringerWeapons of Tomorrow (Napalm)
6. Xibalba-Años En Infierno (Southern Lord)
7. MidnightRebirth By Blasphemy (Metal Blade)
8. Temple of Void-The World That Was (Shadow Kingdom)
9. Necrot-Mortal (Tankcrimes)
10. SepulturaQuadra (Nuclear Blast)
11. Rage-Wings of Rage (Steamhammer)
12. Black Crown Initiate-Violent Portraits of Doomed Escape (Century Media)
13. Sons Of Apollo-MMXX (InsideOut)
14. Annihilator-Ballistic, Sadistic (Silver Lining)
15. Judicator-Let There Be Nothing (Prosthetic)
16. Deathwhite-Grave Image (Season of Mist)
17. Yatra-Blood of the Night (STB)
18. YatraAll Is Lost (Grimoire)
19. Pyrrhon-Abscess Time (Willowtip)
20. Lamb Of Gods/t (Nuclear Blast)
21. Pale Divine-Consequence of Time (Cruz Del Sur)
22. Inexorum-Moonlit Navigation (Gilead Media)
23. Diabolic Oath-Profane Death Exodus (Sentient Ruin Laboratories)
24. 3000AD-The Void (Total Metal)
25. Ulthar-Providence (20 Buck Spin)
26. Eternal ChampionRavening Iron (No Remorse)
27. …and Oceans-Cosmic World Mother (Season of Mist)
28. AlcatrazzBorn Innocent (Silver Lining)
29. WolftoothValhalla (Ripple)
30. Cauldron Black RamSlaver (20 Buck Spin)
31. Paradise LostObsidian (Nuclear Blast)
32. Lord VigoDanse De Noir (High Roller)
33. Firewinds/t (AFM)
34. Automb-Chaosophy (Witching Hour Productions)
35. IronflameBlood Red Victory (Divebomb)
36. Traveler-Termination Shock (Gates of Hell)
37. Solothus-Realm of Ash and Blood (20 Buck Spin)
38. Testament-Titans Of Creation (Nuclear Blast)
39. Psychotic Waltz-The God-Shaped Void (InsideOut)
40. Napalm Death-Throes Of Joy In The Jaws Of Defeatism (Century Media)
41. Deep Purple-Whoosh! (earMUSIC)
42. The Spirit-Cosmic Terror (AOP)
43. Doomraiser-The Dark Side of Old Europa (Time To Kill)
44. Body Count-Carnivore (Century Media)
45. Raven-Metal City (Steamhammer)
46. My Dying Bride-Ghost of Orion (Nuclear Blast)
47. Mekong Delta-Tales of a Future Past (Butler Records)
48. White Magician-Dealers Of Divinity (Cruz Del Sur)
49. Spiritworld-Pagan Rhythms (independent)
50. Uada-Djinn (Eisenwald)
51. Armored SaintPunching The Sky (Metal Blade)
52. AC/DC-Power Up (Columbia)
53. Unleash The Archers-Abyss (Napalm)
54. Blue Öyster Cult-The Symbol Remains (Frontiers)
55. Spell-Opulent Decay (Bad Omen)
56. Fates Warning-Long Day Good Night (Metal Blade)
57. Dark Tranquillity-Moment (Century Media)
58. Grave Digger-Fields of Blood (Napalm)
59. Wytch Hazel-III: Pentecost (Bad Omen)
60. Hellripper-The Affair of the Poisons (Peaceville)
61. Mors Principium Est-Seven (AFM)
62. Falconer-From a Dying Ember (Metal Blade)
63. Night-High Tides, Distant Skies (The Sign)
64. Sodom-Genesis XIX (Steamhammer)
65. Bütcher-666 Goats Carry My Chariot (Osmose Productions)
66. Fury-The Grand Prize (independent)
67. Benediction-Scriptures (Nuclear Blast)
68. Old Mother Hell-Lord Of Demise (Cruz Del Sur)
69. Spirit Adrift-Enlightened In Eternity (Century Media)
70. Dethlehem-Maelstrom of the Emerald Dragon (independent)
71. Killer Be Killed-Reluctant Hero (Nuclear Blast)
72. Hyborian-Volume II (Season of Mist)
73. God Dethroned-Illuminati (Metal Blade)
74. Heathen-Empire of the Blind (Nuclear Blast)
75. Primitive ManImmersion (Relapse)
76. Sorcerer-Lamenting of the Innocent (Metal Blade)
77. Carach AngrenFrankensteina Stratamontanus (Season of Mist)
78. Anaal Nathrakh-Endarkenment (Metal Blade)
79. Ensiferum-Thalassic (Metal Blade)
80. Azarath-Saint Desecration (Agonia)
81. Hexx-Entangled In Sin (High Roller)
82. Vicious Rumors-Celebration Decay (Steamhammer)
83. Incantation-Sect of Vile Divinities (Relapse)
84. Oranssi PazuzuMestarin Kynsi (Nuclear Blast)
85. Code Orange-Underneath (Roadrunner)
86. WolfFeeding The Machine (Century Media)
87. Morta Skuld-Suffer For Nothing (Peaceville) 
88. Vanden PlasThe Ghost Xperiment-Illumination (Frontiers)
89. HakenVirus (InsideOut)
90. High Spirits-Hard To Stop (High Roller)
91. Iron Savior-Skycrest (AFM)
92. Enslaved-Utgard  (Nuclear Blast)
93. Vader-Solitude In Madness (Nuclear Blast)
94. OmegavortexBlack Abomination Spawn (Invictus Productions)
95. Krallice-Mass Cathexis (Hathenter)
96. Persuader-Necromancy (Frontiers)
97. Shrapnel-Palace For The Insane (Candlelight)
98. Skeleton-s/t (20 Buck Spin)
99. Intronaut-Fluid Existential Inversions (Metal Blade)
100. Vanik-III (Austenitized)


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