10. Zombi—Spirit Animal (Relapse) If Steve Moore and A. E. Paterra were a lot older and sexed up their sound with a little more disco, they could have been “big in Germany” just like Saga in the early ’80s. Their music is stern and exacting. I admire the purity of their vision and the quality of their execution. They also offer the simple pleasure of hearing two guys play their asses off. Like SUNN O))), they started with an obvious source of inspiration and moved on to define their own sound. This latest round of planetarium rock is their best yet.
9. Present—Barbaro (ma non troppo) (Ad Hoc) Although the studio half of this CD/DVD release is a bit stingy, the package as a whole is a stunner. Review here.
8. Woods of Ypres—IV: The Green Album (Practical Art) Another compelling heavy metal confessional from Ontario’s “ex-black/now-doom and anything else you want to call it" metallists. Review here.
7. Six Organs of Admittance—RTZ (Drag City) I feel like a cheat including this compilation of old and rare SOoA material, but it did come out last year and it did give me a new perspective on Ben Chasny’s remarkable art. Review here.
6. Yob—The Great Cessation (Profound Lore) Yob’s mighty comeback saw them stripping down and stretching out, feeding off their well-justified anger and crushing everything. Review here.