Heavy Blog Guest List – Artificial Brain’s Top 10 Albums of 2017

Editor’s note: Yes, it’s that time of the year again! While our own Album of the Year list is already published by the time you read this, we still have a ton of end of year content for you. Over the coming week, we’ll be exploring 2017 in various of ways: through curated summaries for specific genres, editorials on specific phenomena we found interesting and, of course, guest lists! This time around, we have a band who’s name should by synonymous with metal’s success in 2017: Artificial BrainInfrared Horizon, their album from this year, is top of the crop in the extremely busy and prolific technical death metal field. With all the releases coming from the sub-genre this year, Artificial Brain still managed to prove they’re a cut above the rest, providing an aggressive, abrasive and yet strangely captivating science fiction masterpiece.

Their list makes a lot of sense, in that regard. It’s chock full of overwhelming and abrasive metal from bands like AosothThantifaxath and Dying Fetus. But it also includes more beguiling and subtle choices, like Circle or the avant-garde trappings of Fleurety. Thus, you’ll just have to check it out for yourself and see what’s what for Arti-B in 2017!

Thantifaxath- Void Masquerading as Matter

Jagged, startling rhythms and carefully framed chromatic melodies abound on this new EP by a singular voice in modern black metal. The compositions are studious and cerebral, but the atmosphere of the music never gets obscured by craft. -Sam Smith (bass)


Abigor/Nightbringer/Thy Darkened Shade/Mortuus – ANTM

All four bands have a distinct sound while maintaining a common thread throughout the split. It really does feel like one long song with different movements. I also like that it’s black metal that doesn’t venture too far into the realm of weirdness/atonal dissonance and still feels like it brought something new to the table. – Dan Gargiulo (guitars)

Broken Hope – Mutilated and Assimilated

The modern lineup has fully assimilated, resulting in a classic Broken Hope record. – Will (vocals)

Circle- Terminal

Listening to this new psychedelic rock opus from the insanely prolific Finnish collective, Circle, you can hear obvious references to bands like The Stooges, Magma, and Neu!, but Terminal manages to avoid sounding like a pastiche. An incredible lead vocal performance and inspired riffing help this record to stand out in what is a massive and largely consistent discography. -Sam


Aosoth- V: The Inside Scriptures

I’ve been excited for this album for a while now. It hits so hard, and they make dissonance sound melodic. They never have a riff that sounds “weird for the sake of being weird”. There’s always some sort of feeling to it. I also love this band’s production. Even on the old stuff when it was more raw, they always sounded huge. – Dan


Sinister – Syncretism

Standout album not just for modern death metal, but also for this band’s lofty discography. -Will

Emptiness- Not For Music

Stripping away many of the more extreme elements of their excellent 2014 record, Nothing but the Whole, Emptiness take a more subdued approach here, employing dreary gothic melodies and glossy synth textures to create a unsettling, memorable experience. -Sam

Suffering Hour – In Passing Ascension

One of my favorite albums this year for sure. This band deserves way more attention. Some of these songs and riffs are what I wish I could write like. I’m eagerly awaiting more from this band. Not to mention I’ve never heard a better use of wind chimes in heavy metal. Totally spooky sounding in every way. – Dan

Dying Fetus – Wrong One to Fuck With

Tuck your chain. -Will

Fleurety- The White Death

This is the first full-length in 17 years for this seminal weirdo Norwegian BM band, and it’s a strange affair. The cool, subtle mix by Lasse Marhaug conspires with woodwinds and synths to create an odd 70’s prog vibe, which is disrupted by moments of whorling dissonance and stumbling, Beefheart-esque percussion. -Sam

Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.