2015 was another excellent year. While there are some fairly obvious candidates for a top 30 I missed out on or discovered too late in the year (Nechochwen, and Obsequiae to name two) there was still plenty of good material out there this year. Here’s some of it:
Ashmedi and company returned with a very solid album.
Necrowretch-With Serpents Scourge
No frills black/death that’s as old-school as it gets.
Seven albums in and Vreid are still going strong and releasing quality melodic black metal.
Demon Eye-Tempora Infernalia
Extremely fun retro hard rock/doom album with some really catchy songs.
An apocalyptic mix of black metal, noise, and post.
Vehemence-Forward Without Motion
Melodic death metal masters return with a vengeance.
Tad Morose-St. Demonius
A welcome return from these power metal stalwarts.
Der Weg Einer Freiheit-Stellar
Yet another great atmospheric black metal album in a year full of them.
Swirling, chaotic black/death/doom that’s as evil and nasty sounding as it gets.
It’s been a rough year for Lemmy and company, but this is another fine album in a legendary discography.
Tribulation-The Children of the Night
Perhaps the year’s most polarizing release, Tribulation shifted to more of an occult rock/psychadelic sound.
Brothers of the Sonic Cloth-Brothers of the Sonic Cloth
Absolutely crusing stoner doom/sludge.
Ghoulgotha-The Deathmass Cloak
A great doom/death debut with slight progressive edges.
Hooded Menace-Darkness Drips Forth
Everything you’ve loved about this Finnish doom/death band is present on their fourth album.
If you’re tired of waiting for the new Destroyer 666, give these fellow Aussies a shot. Plus, look at that cover art.
My Dying Bride-Feel the Misery
Another beautifully depressing album from one of the genre’s longest running and most respected acts.
Year of the Goat-The Unspeakable
Cosmic occult doom of the highest order.
Christian Mistress-To Your Death
Incredibly fun retro heavy metal. Christine Davis’s vocals are something special.
Blaze of Perdition-Near Death Revelations
One of the best black metal albums this year. Unrelenting and oppressively heavy.
Blind Guardian-Beyond the Red Mirror
Captivating and catchy as always.
An Autumn for Crippled Children-The Long Goodbye
Beautiful, moving, and depressing, this is one of the better atmospheric black metal albums of the year, and there are a lot.
Witchsorrow-No Light, Only Fire
One of the year’s strongest doom releases.
Incredibly varied black metal, including touches of funeral doom.
Rivers of Nihil-Monarchy
I’m not normally one for tech death, but for the songs on here I’ll make an exception.
No surprise, the year’s best atmospheric black metal album.
Paradise Lost-The Plague Within
Still one of the leaders of doom/death, The Plague Within is the heaviest album Paradise Lost have put out in a while.
Bleak progressive metal with excellent songs. Einar Solberg’s voice is fantastic.
This band can seemingly do no wrong; In Times is another fantastic album.
Bell Witch-Four Phantoms
For not having a guitarist, this duo created one of the most emotionally intense albums of the year and what, to me, is a classic of the funeral doom genre.
Mgla-Exercises in Futility
It’s hard to explain what makes Mgla so great. There are a million ‘orthodox’ black metal bands that sound similar, but Mgla flatten almost all of them.