Editor’s note: welcome back to our Heavy Blog Guest List feature where we give some of the bands we covered (or just adored) in 2016 a chance to publish their own Top 10 Albums of 2016. This time around we have Cyborg Octopus, a band who produced one of the funnest and most well thought out progressive metal albums of the year. Their approach to differing influences, ideas and styles can definitely be seen reflected in their chosen Top 10, which is, once again, presented to you the reader completely unedited and untouched! If you’re interesting in the kind of music that a group with these far-flung tastes might make, check out their album below. Enjoy the list!
1) Haken – Affinity
We’re prog nerds with a soft spot for genre mixing! This album pretty much encompasses everything we enjoy about innovative music; awesome well structured catchy music, multiple genres, odd time signatures, and constant surprises! Haken! If you guys are reading this, we <3 you!
2) The Black Queen – Fever Dream
Our recent 80’s infatuation in conjunction with our mourning of the loss of Dillinger Escape Plan makes this retro album a killer! Instead of just being a novelty, this album stands out as being a very mature 80’s synth pop record.
3) Evergrey – Storm Within
A stunning effort from one of the most underrated bands in metal over the last decade. Feel all the feels feelsily.
4) Slice The Cake – Odyssey
In creation for something like half a decade, powerful is the word that comes to mind for this tour de force. If a sonic “odyssey” is what you seek, look no further.
5) Fallujah – Dreamless
Do we even need to explain why this is up here? A great album by really solid friends of ours. If you somehow haven’t listened to this, unburrow yourself from that pile of rocks you’ve been living under and give this a spin.
6) Andrew Bird – Are You Serious?
Grow up and listen to a true lyricist and songwriter, you metal cretins.
7) Flamingosis – Bright Moments
Flamingosis makes some amazing beats fused with deep R&B/Soul influences. This album could easily be a passive listen while going about your day, but is interesting and varied enough that it demands attention. The most impressive part of these 15 songs is how consistently Flamingosis manages to build on some great grooves to create full fledged experiences, utilizing the electronic elements as they are needed and combining textures you don’t commonly hear in music today.
8) Plini – Handmade Cities
THIS ALBUM IS SO HAPPY. Clocking in under 35 minutes, Handmade Cities manages to create a whimsical journey of music over 7 tracks. These songs are catchy, upbeat, and filled with enough jazzy licks to keep us humming into the new year. “Every Piece Matters” is golden example of music that can stimulate the imagination.
9) Twelve Foot Ninja – Outlier
Silly/fun Music for silly/fun people. if the cast from the looney tunes started a prog band, this would be it. Twelve Foot Ninja is fantastic at bringing a concept together, songs like “Point of You” make you wonder why more metal bands don’t utilize lounge music.
10) Polyphia – Renaissance
Polyphia has mastered the art of creating infectious, well-structured instrumental magic. This album is a groovefest from front to back, “Storm” and “Paradise” are a few of my most listened to songs of the year. After their first full length “Muse”, this band seems to have focused on creating memorable tunes moreso that in your face shred, which was a welcome and unexpected change.