2018 is almost over.
It’s been a good year for Octopus Invasion!
I personally discovered a lot of new bands this year, in fact 56,6% of the list are new discoveries.
Chelsee wrote some amazing live reviews about Psycho Las Vegas and Roadburn.
We even got to meet each other on the Sunday of Roadburn.
Which was very awesome.
I also went to some amazing gigs
At The Drive In, Death From Above 1979 @013, Tilburg
Kadavar@Nieuwe Nor, Heerlen
Roadburn Sunday With Wiegedood and LLNN @013, Tilburg
Sumac @Doornroosje, Nijmegen
Graspop Friday with Zeal and Ardor,Culture Abuse and Neurosis,@Dessel
Pallbearer @Valkhof Festival,Nijmegen
Soulcrusher with Inter Arma,Deafheaven,Whores and Yob @Doornroosje, Nijmegen
Idles @Zakk Dusseldorf
Also 2019 is going to be smashing because I got tickets for
Mastodon, Kvelertak, Mutiod Man @ 013, Tilburg
Esben And The Witch @ Merlyn, Nijmegen
Idles @ Doornroosje, Nijmegen.
But now, the most important part!
The best records of 2018 for me personally. I am aware that I am missing some amazing records but I only picked records that I own.
Here is my top 30!
30. Nocturnal Graves – Titan
On number 30 it’s Titan from Nocturnal Graves. Nocturnal Graves plays a mixture of black and death metal.
Titan was also my introduction to the band.
The artwork of Titan got my attention. It’s that type of artwork where every time you look at it you see something new, a true masterpiece!
The haunting Death Metal isn’t new but it’s from a very high level. You won’t get bored.
This record is for the more standard metal heads.
Nothing more and also nothing less than some pure melodic death metal!
Favorite Tracks:Titan,Ecdysis, Shedding Weak Flesh
29.Corrosion Of Conformity – No Cross No Crown
3 years ago Corrosion of Conformity played some shows in Europe with Pepper Keenan. I didn’t know anything about them at that time but I thought Pepper Keenan was (and still is) such an amazing guitarist so I bought a ticket for that show. It was an absolute blast to see them playing live!
Since then I have been listening to them more and more!
This year they brought out a new album called No Cross, No Crown. It’s full of those nice nasty riffs !Songs like The Luddite, Cast The First Stone, Nothing Left To Say are just such great tracks!
With Corrosion Of Conformity you just know that the music is coming from the heart. You can really see the joy of Woody playing those nasty riffs. That’s the real rock ’n roll stuff! Corrosion of Conformity are back!
Favorite Tracks: The Luddite, Cast The First Stone, E.L.M
28.At The Gates – To Drink From The Night Itself
The kings of the melodic death metal are back with a new album!
First of all the artwork: really great work by Costin Chioreanu.
I personally think it’s one of the most beautiful pieces of this year because you get to look at something beautiful while listening to those songs.
After founding guitarist Anders Björler left the band they announced that they were working on a new album and that Jonas Stålhammar was going to replace him. Jonas and Tomas have been playing together in another band called The Lurking Fear.
To Drink From The Night Itself just shows why this bands is still the king of their genre.
Favorite Tracks: To Drink From The Night Itself, Palace Of Lepers, The Colours Of The Beast
27.Of Feather And Bone – Bestial Hymns Of Perversion
What do you get when you put Bolt Thrower, Obituary and Nails into a blender?
Well the answer is Of Feather And Bone.
You can hear the groove of those classic death metal bands with the aggressive touch!
Bestial Hymns of Perversion lasts about 30 minutes but that is all the time it needs to destroy everything that comes in its way.
This record is a beast on the loose called Bestial Hymns Of Perversion!
Favorite Tracks: Lust For Torment, Pious Abnormality
26.Phil H Anselmo – Choosing Mental Illness As A Virtue
Everyone knows Phil H. Anselmo. Whether you like the man or not this guy has been in some kickass bands like Pantera , Scour and Down.
Besides playing in those bands he’s also a member of Phil H. Anselmo & The Illegals. I got the first album Walk Through Exits Only and it blew my mind .
So when I heard that there was going to be a new album I got very excited!
The first single Choosing Mental Illness really convinced me that this was going to be a great fucking record! The smokey voice of Phil combined with the great fucking musicianship of the Illegals is a match made in heaven.
Favorite Tracks: Choosing Mental Illness, Delinquent, Invalid Colubrine Fraunds
25.Slow Crush – Aurora
I am a big fan of the record label called Holy Roar.
There are 5 records from that label in my top 30.
One of them is Aurora from the Belgian Shoegaze punk group Slow Crush. I immediately loved the vibes of their debut single called Aurora.
The dreamy voice of Isa is just so sweet to listen to.
The trouble I have with shoegaze is that it gets boring for me after a while. That’s why I like the punk part, it keeps me awake I guess (haha). None the less this record proves that we can except great things from Slow Crush.
They got picked up by the bigger media and got to do some cool shows! But I bet 2019 is going to be a big year for them!
Favorite Tracks: Glow, Drift, Beached
24.Jack White –Boarding House Reach
This man doesn’t need any introduction.
Jack White has been in many awesome bands, projects, etc…
This is his third solo album if I am not mistaken.
On Boarding House Reach you get funk, soul and rock all mixed together with a modern touch to it. Ice Station Zebra!
That song’s got one of the best bass lines that I have heard in a long time!
There is just so much happening on that song . It’s my favorite song of the year for sure, I could just listen to it OVER AND OVER.
That is another great track on this album. It’s just a typical Jack White track, there are so much nice little details to it. Like the drums at the end, the synths, the backup singers. It’s an anthem!
Well if people ask me about who I think is a underrated artist I would definitely say Jack White. He is just so fucking great with sounds and so much more than the guy who wrote Seven Nation Army. He proves it with this album yet again!
I’ll say it now, and I’ll say it again: Jack White is a musical genius.
Favorite Tracks: Ice Station Zebra, Over And Over And Over, Connected By Love
23.Ghost – Prequelle
I’ve been a fan of this band since I heard the bass intro of Con Clavi Con Dio. Ghost has grown a lot since their debut album, from seeing them perform early on a festival to seeing them in sold out venues during the Meliora tour.
The moment I saw them during the Meliora gig I knew that Ghost was going to be fucking huge. The stage present, the world created around Ghost but most of all the songs that are so very cleaver. You can hate them or love them but nothing is going to stop Ghost from being one of the biggest Rock/Metal acts of this decennium.
Prequelle is a great record with some very strong songs on it, but for me personally it doesn’t feel like a whole album. I do like the way they keep challenging themselves. When you hear Miasma you know they are kickass musicians. Not to mention how catchy Dance Macabre is.
All Hail The Mighty Ghost!
Favorite Tracks: See The Light, Miasma, Pro Memoria, Dance Macabre
22.Letters From The Colony – Vignette
Last year we had some amazing technical death metal albums from Gojira, Car Bomb and Meshuggah. 2 bands that have really built a name throughout the years. This year a newcomer made an excellent Technical Death Metal record.
It wouldn’t surprise me if this band would be a support act for Gojira Or Meshuggah. Vignette sounds very mature, just listen to the opening track Galax.
Letters From The Colony made an incredible debut album!
If Vignette is only the beginning then we can expect great things from this band!
Favorite Tracks:Galax,Glass Palace,Vignette
21.Clutch – Book Of Bad Decisions
I haven’t been a fan of Clutch for that long.
The Earth Rocker record was my introduction to the band.
I didn’t know that Clutch was already making another record, so Book Of Bad Decisions came as quite the surprise.
The thing that made me want to listen to it was because a lot of people were saying that it wasn’t any good.
That couldn’t be true: Clutch making a bad album? No fucking way!
I don’t know what these people dislike about this one because once again it’s one hell of an album.
I mean, did they not listen to How To Shake Hands?
Did they not hear those funky soul vibes on In Walks Barbella?
It has those Go Go vibes to it.
Well I really don’t get why people don’t like this stuff.
Clutch simply can’t do anything wrong with me.
Book Of Bad Decisions is just another banger after Earth Rocker and Psychic Warfare!
Favorite Tracks: How To Shake Hands, In Walks Barbarella,Lorelei
20.Outer Heaven – Realms Of Eternal Decay
When I heard Outer Heaven for the first time I fell in love with the groove of this band.
On the opening track Vortex Of Thought you just get sucked into that nice bit of groove.
That thick, heavy layer of Sludge Death Metal stays solid throughout the whole album,
Relapse Records is killing it lately, in 2017 they brought out Gatecreeper’s Sonoran Depravation.
Which was a great combination of the things I love the most: heavy melodic riffs and blast beast.
Two years later Relapse Records did it again with Realms of Eternal Decay!
Hopefully these two bands will tour Europe some more because I love stuff like this!
I haven’t even mentioned how fucking awesome the artwork is. Zombies eating each other with Outer Heaven as the soundtrack!
Favorite Tracks: Pulsating Swarm ,Bloodspire , Putrid Dwelling
19.Infernal Coil – Within A World Forgotten
This year I have been listening to more extreme metal compared to the years before. I mean, how could I not with great releases from bands like Portal, Hissing, Of Feather And Bone and of course Infernal Coil!
Within A World Forgotten destroys everything that comes in its way. It’s so aggressive and fast but at the same time easy to listen to because the songs are just so fucking good. Where I had trouble to get into Portal’s new album, I didn’t have any trouble with this one. I just hit me like a bomb!
I am listening to this record while writing this and I really don’t have anything left to say. I leaves me speechless, so just listen to Within A World Forgotten.
You won’t regret it!
Favorite Tracks: Crusher Of The Seed, 49 Suns, Bodies Set In Ashen Death
18.Black Salvation – Uncertainty Is Bliss
I have seen some big music magazines announce their year list already but none of them have put this record into it.
Well, I couldn’t believe my eyes.
Uncertainty Is Bliss is just such an amazing record!
I mean it starts off with a beast of a track called In A Caskets Ride.
It’s just such a great jam with one of my favorite drummers Uno Bruniusson
I personally think this album and band deserves far more credit than it’s getting.
Songs like Breathing Hands and Floating Torpid are really groovy rock songs.
I just really love this album, it sounds like one fantastic jam session!
Favorite Tracks: In A Caskets Ride, Breathing Hands, Floating Torpid
17.Death Alley – Superbia
I am from the Netherlands and if I must be honest, it’s hard to find really great bands in my country. I don’t know if that’s just me being picky or if it’s harder to create a name for yourself here.
There is one band that I think are the fucking kings of rock ’n roll. That band is DEATH ALLEY! Their debut album with the brilliant name Black Magic Boogieland was one big rock sensation. Luckily we didn’t have to wait long for a next record from the guys.
That record came out this year and is called Superbia. Even though the line up and sound changed a bit, it still rocks your fucking socks off! Listen to that amazing bass line in Headlights In The Dark. If that doesn’t take you along the rock ’n roll train then nothing will! Superbia is more Space Rock then their previous album but that isn’t a bad thing at all!
Favorite Tracks: Headlights In the Dark, Pilgrim, The Sewage
16.Pijn – loss
It took me some time to understand this album, but after hearing it a couple of times I really connected with it.
I love the way Pijn speaks without using lyrics. For me music says more than words, it’s a feeling you get when you hear those instruments playing together.
Loss takes you on a journey I love the way that the fragileness of songs like Detach flow directly into Distress. Talking about a beautiful build up.
That’s the strength of Loss: the balance between fragile and heavy. Also the way they use the cello on this record is absolutely amazing.
It add so much to the music!
Favorite Tracks: Denial, Distress, Squalor
15.Yob – Our Raw Heart
If you know what Mike Scheidt has been through the last couple of years and you hear Our Raw Heart, you can’t listen to it and not be moved by it.
The songs are so raw and powerful!
I find it hard to use the right words for this album. But let me say this: when you see someone like Mike Scheidt or John Baizley (Baroness) perform the art they made with so much feeling, it really gets to you in all the right ways.
For me this is a huge motivation to have a positive mindset while going through life.
Our Raw Heart is a beautiful masterpiece!
Favorite Tracks: The Screen, Beauty In Falling Leaves, Original Face
14.Miracle – The Strife Of Love In A Dream
The Strife Of Love In A Dream was released earlier this year (16th February)
When I was done with all the shredding guitars and growling vocals I picked up this album.
The electronic new wave of Miracle was a big hit for me.
I notice that I listen to this album especially at night.
A catchy song like Light Mind was the soundtrack of my early shifts for a long time.
I never been really into electronic kind of music but I slowly discovering more new bands that I like.
One of my favorite songs of the album is the last track called Angelix.
It’s just such a big sounding track!
It feels like a song that could be on the soundtrack of Stranger Things.
Just a great ending of a fantastic album!
Favorite Tracks: Sulfur, Light Mind,Angelix
13.Esben And The Witch – Nowhere
This Band is a king in building up songs.
They start with something small but at the end you find yourself moving along with the music.
It’s like they take you on a musical journey.
I had only heard one song before Nowhere was announced (Marching Song) but after I heard Dull Gret I was convinced that it was going to be a beautiful record.
I got tickets for their gig in Nijmegen and I’m really looking forward to hear all these songs live.
Favorite Tracks: Dull Gret, The Unspoiled, Darkness- I Too Am Here
12.Secret Cutter – Quantum Eraser
FAST,SLUDGY AND MEAN AS FUCK!
That’s how you could describe Quantum Eraser,I was immediately sold when I heard Secret Cutter.
The mix between sludge and grind core is new for me.
While listening to this Quantum Eraser it gave me a lot of energy, I couldn’t sit still
The way they mix the heaviness of the low sludge riffs with that amazing blast beast.
I listen to Quantum Eraser when I’ve had a shit day and most of the time I feel a lot better afterwards.
For the people who are going to Roadburn: go see Secret Cutter, you won’t regret it!
Favorite Track: Trampled By Light, Doormat, Avalanche
11.Svalbard – It’s Hard To Have Hope
I know Svalbard from their album One Day All This Will End, which was released in 2015.
So when they announcement that we could expect another record from Svalbard, I was pretty stoked.
It’s Hard To Have Hope is a beautiful album with some very important subjects, such as feminism, sexual assault, sexual intimidation and misogyny.
Serena did an excellent job writing those amazing lyrics (like always).
The society we live in really screams for records like this!
With all the bullshit happening today
It’s Hard To Have Hope came at just the right time.
This is not just an album, this is a statement!
Favorite Tracks: How Do We Stop It, Unpaid Intern, Feminazi!?
10.Emma Ruth Rundle – On Dark Horses
On Dark Horses was also my introduction to Emma’s music and I have to admit that I fell in love with her music.
On Dark Horses is such a layback album and her voice makes it sound so lovely.
It was the perfect soundtrack to driving to work when everyone is still asleep.
I am not always in the mood for heavy shredding guitars so then it’s nice to listen to something other than all the heavy stuff I usually listen to.
It’s really nice to just dream away with the lovely tunes of Emma Ruth Rundle.
Favorite Tracks: Fever Dreams, Darkhorse, Dead Set Eyes, Light Song
9.Hissing – Permanent Destitution
This year I found a lot of new bands!
One of those new finds was Hissing from Seattle.
They released a record called Permanent Destitution.
The thing that got my attention was that it was released by an amazing label called Profound Lore and also the amazing cover art!
I like it when I see art and it’s not just some skeleton kind of shit.
What you hear is chaos but it’s balanced, which may sound weird but I don’t really know how else to describe it.
Hissing succeeded to make an absolute dark extreme beauty called Permanent Destitution.
One of the best extreme metal records of the year for me personally
Favorite Tracks: Cascading Failures, Eulogy In Squalor, Pablum Abudance
8.Carnation – Chapel Of Abhorrence
I discovered this band through of a promo EP that you get with a magazine called Rock Tribune.
It was a live EP called Akakusa Deathfest and I really liked what I heard.
So when they announced Chapel Of Abhorrence I knew it was going to be good!
CHAPEL OF ABHORRENCE IS THE DEATH METAL RECORD OF 2018!
People who say that metal is death are so fucking wrong!
They just need to open their fucking eyes and ears and listen to ths!
It wouldn’t surprise me if they are going to be very big in the near future.
This shit is just to fucking good!
Favorite Tracks: Chapel Of Abhorrence, Disciples Of Bloodlust, Sermon Of The Death
7.Shame – Songs Of Praise
5 young dudes from South London started a band called Shame.
If you see the cover you may think it’s full of folk or something like that.
Well this is a perfect example that you shouldn’t judge a book (or in this case an album) by its cover.
Shame is an indie rock band with some real post punk vibes all over it.
The songs are from a very high level! Concrete, One Rizla are just a few examples of great fucking songs!
The thing I love the most about them is that it’s energetic!
No clean vocals but a nice, heavy English accent.
I been listening to this album a lot!
Favorite Tracks: Concrete, One Rizla, Tasteless, Gold Hole,Friction
6.Sylvaine – Atoms Aligned, Coming Undone
I just got this record a month but it has been growing on me very fast.
I normally don’t like clean voices like this but Sylvaine somehow makes me fall in love with it.
It just makes complete sense.
One of my personal favorites is Morklagt when she sings in her native language (Norwegian)
It’s also the track that summarizes the whole album.
The ability to sing beautifully but also scream like the devil is just very impressive!
Atoms Aligned, Coming Undone is a beautiful masterpiece that really blew my mind.
I hope she will be playing some shows near me because I really want to experience this live!
Favorite Tracks: Morklagt, Abeyance, Severance, L’Appel Du Vide
5.Gouge Away – Burnt Sugar
This record hasn’t been out that long
. It saw the light of day on 28th September but that was enough time to convince me that Burnt Sugar is the shit!
Gouge Away changed their sound on Burnt Sugar.
Instead of the typical Punk/Hardcore they turned it into a 90’s noise rock kind of vibe and I like it a lot! The sound on Burnt Sugar is absolutely stunning!
My personal highlight is Ghost!
That thick bass line is just so fucking nasty and when the guitars come in it all just floats so well.
Or take the song Stray; it’s danceable with that little drum thing going on.
I can talk for hours about how much I like this record!
This is some great stuff, don’t sleep on it!
Favorite Tracks: Ghost, Stray, Hey Mercy, Can’t Relate, Dis s o c i a t i on
4.Møl – Jord
The surprise of the year for me was Møl, a band from Denmark.
These youngsters made an incredible debut album called Jord.
The balance between the dreamy shoegaze and the dangerous black metal is so fucking good.
I think Ligament is a perfect example of this great balance, with its hectic opening and the Gojira sounding outro.
If you can do stuff like this you steal my heart straight away.
This record just stole my heart!
Hopefully they do another European tour soon.
Jord is a true masterpiece!
Favorite Tracks: Storm, Bruma, Jord, Ligament, Lambda
3.Wiegedood – De Doden Hebben Het Goed lll
The end of a trilogy and what a trilogy it is!
All their stuff has been in my top 10 every year so far.
Some bands just can’t write bad songs, and Wiegedood is the perfect example.
You know what you’re going to get when you see them live or listen to their records.
Intense melodic black metal!
Opening track Prowl immediately grabs you by the throat and during the album Wiegedood doesn’t plan on loosening that grip.
If you saw the band at Roadburn 2018 , you know that Wiegedood isn’t just a side project.
The sound you hear on the album is intense but when they play live it just takes everything to a whole other level.
Favorite Tracks: Prowl, Parool
2.Deafheaven – Ordinary Human Corrupt Human Love
This was the year of post black metal for me with Ordinary Human Corrupt Human Love as an absolute highlight!
The songs on Ordinary Corrupt Human Love are out of this world.
They’ve all got something special, for instance the guitar solo on Canary Yellow or the duet with Chelsee Wolfe on Night People or the Piano on You Without You.
It just has so many beautiful details.
I don’t know how Deafheaven did it, but I got a very positive vibe from this album.
I can feel the happiness through the music, I saw it when I was at Soulcrusher festival.
Too bad the sound wasn’t 100% but I enjoyed it very much.
Favorite Tracks: You Without End, Canary Yellow, Glint, Worthless Animal
1.Idles – Joy As A Act of Resistance
Last year they released their debut album called Brutalism and ended at second place just after Mastodon. This year they are number one!
This album made the most turns on my stereo for sure!
Every song on Joy As A Act Of Resistance is just a highlight all by itself.
I mean, opening track Colossus is a beast of a song but at the same time
Idles also shows how fragile they can be on a song like June.
When I saw them in Dusseldorf I was blown away by their performance.
I sang along with all of their songs and at the end of the concert I was covered in sweat and had no voice. When this happens, you know it was a great show!
Most of all I love the message Idles sends out.
You have to love yourself.
IDLES IS LOVE!
Favorite Tracks: Colossus, Danny Nedelko, Love Song, Samaritans, Great, Television, June