I have finally pieced together the New Wave of Thrash Metal Blog's Top Ten Albums of 2012.
Creating lists based on music favorites is always a difficult task for me because the list changes almost daily. Plus, I don't have the funds to get EVERY single thrash release, so really an "official best-of list" would be rather bogus coming from me. So if you don't see on my list what should be an obvious choice for every thrash top-ten, just know that either I haven't bought the album or your idea of a good album is pure silliness.
Also, let it be known that I originally included an "Honorable Mentions" list as well, but it became way, way too freakin' long. I could have easily made a Top 30 list for the year, but I only have so much time and patience (as do you, I'm sure), so I axed the honorables.
Now...let's get started!!
10. Conflagrator - Inevitable Punishments
These guys cranked out a killer self-released EP with songs chock-full of thick riffs hammered over heavy, mid-paced rhythms.
Dr. Living Dead - Radioactive Intervention
Delivering another lesson in energetic crossover thrash, Dr. Living Dead offered up an album every bit as good as their debut.
Bio-Cancer - Ear Piercing Thrash
A chaotic mass of head-jolting riffage and venomous vocals weaved together in a rather original sound. Just an undeniably powerful album.
Testament - Dark Roots of Earth
As I said in my review for this album, "Testament managed to take everything they have perfected over the course of the band's career and build upon that foundation to give us an album that is savagely hungry, effectively beautiful, and as heavy as a near-flawless metal album should be." Too true.
Violentor - Rot
Their second album is another vicious attack of balls-out punk thrash. The riffs are infectious, creating songs that are satisfyingly catchy and brutal all at once.
Insinnerator - Hypothermia
Insinnerator's second release takes the unique sound of their debut and adds a confidence and maturity to the songwriting, making it all tighter, meaner, and completely neck-shredding. Utterly fantastic.
Overkill - The Electric Age
Veterans showing the young'uns how to CRUSH! When I read interviews with Blitz about his competitive spirit against the young and hungry thrash bands, he shows that while he and D.D. are older and wiser, they are every bit as hungry. The Electric Age is one hell of a kick in the ass.
Tantara - Based on Evil
At the time, the wait for this album to drop was excruciating. So much hype surrounded Based on Evil, and when it finally became available, I felt the music surpassed expectations. Based on Evil rages with well-written thrash, propelled by killer old-school riffing and ripping vocals. This will be considered a classic album within the NWOTM.
Lich King - Born of the Bomb
Pure thunder from a band clearly on top of their game. It's interesting to wonder if Lich King knew how special and thoroughly kick-ass an album Born of the Bomb was going to be as they were writing it. I love how people were almost surprised at just how damn good BotB is. We live in crazy times when a band like Lich King still remains unsigned to a solid metal label.
4ARM - Submission For Liberty
Modern thrash done perfectly. With Submission For Liberty, 4ARM created a bulldozer of a metal album with hardly an inch of filler. Completely engrossing, Submission For Liberty contains dynamic musical passages of aggression and beauty that soars along on the backs of tight, well-crated riffs and rhythms. Smart, lively, and it freakin' CRUSHES.