2014 proved to be one amazing year for metal. The sheer amount of diversity in releases, bands treading new water, old standbys playing circles around newer bands, and the amount of classic albums released would be a hard one to top. 2015 is doing it’s damnedest to try and do just that. While last year many of my favorite bands released masterpieces of music, this year has been all about the underdogs and new comers. There’s so much impressive stuff coming out, so many bands playing with such fire and gusto, you can’t help but be caught up in the rush. I’ve listened to over 170 new releases this year and to be totally honest, a very good majority of them have been awesome. Some have been downright amazing, and some even may be modern classics. I get so excited when I talk about metal I love it’s hard not to speak in hyperbole but I truly feel this is a golden era of music. If you take the time to look for it you can hear music that is as good as it gets. I post all these reviews to try and spread some of the metal around to people who are already interested in the genre and may have missed something rad, but mostly to try and hook a new metal fan for if you find even a sliver of the joy and inspiration metal music has provided me, you be happier for it.

So, seeing as we are half way through this year, I thought I’d share the albums that have been taking up most of my listening time so far. I’ve posted reviews for each of these albums before so I’ll skip that for now and just give you the bare bones of it. This list covers black metal, doom metal, power metal, death metal and every sub-genre mashup you can think of so you’re bound to find something you’ll enjoy. Here’s to the metal!

Vallendusk – Homeward Path
Napalm Death – Apex Predator – Easy Meat
Orden Ogan – Ravenhead
Blind Guardian – Beyond the Red Mirror
Sühnopfer – Offertories
Grimoire – L’aorasie des spectres rêveurs EP
Visigoth – The Revenant King
Death Karma – The History of Death and Burial Ritual Part 1
Drowning the Light – From the Abyss
Paths – Beauty and Nihility
Leviathan – Scar Sighted
Dynfari – Vegferð Tímans
Royal Thunder – Crooked Doors
House of Atreus – The Spear and the Ichor that Follows
Macabre  Omen – Gods of War – At War
Sulphur Aeon – Gateway to the Antisphere
Akhlys – The Dreaming I
Kroda – Ginnungagap Ginnungagaldr Ginnungakaos
Cloud Rat – Qliphoth
Arcturus – Arcturian
Tau Cross – Tau Cross
Deathhammer – Evil Power
Drudkh – A Furrow Cut Short
Obsequiae – Aria of Vernal Tombs
Amestigon – Thier
Paradise Lost – The Plague Within
Black Tower – The Secret Fire
High on Fire – Luminiferous
Melechesh – Enki
A Forest of Stars – Beware the Sword You Cannot See
Obsequiae – Aria of Vernal Tombs