Welcome back to our ongoing series of best-of lists for this year, where we give some of the bands we covered (or just adored) in 2016 a chance to publish their own lists regarding their favorite albums of this past year. Today, we’ve got a list by Wrvth, whose self-titled album ranked in our top 10 favorite albums of 2015. For the unaware, Wrvth’s sound is a fluid fusion of razor-sharp technical death metal, atmospheric and melancholy post-hardcore, and raw, savage metalcore, all of which coalesces together into a unique sound that offers up unadulterated emotion through frenetic, talented performances by each member. We’re pleased to offer a top 10 list of sorts from the Californian quintet, in which each member has chosen their two favorite albums of 2016.
Thomas Vasquez – Vocals
Hesitation Wounds – Awake for Everything
I stumbled across this band listening to Touché Amoré‘s new album Stage Four. I’m a huge fan of Jeremy’s vocals so it was easy for me to pick up on his new project. This album is heavy, melodic, action packed with a lot of tasteful hardcore riffs and beautiful melodies.
Fall City Fall – Modern Day Savage
Some of our favorite people and awesome musicians. My first tour back in the band was with these guys and they had a huge impact on me and our band. This album is awesome. They picked up on the heavier side of things from the last record Victus but for all the right reasons. Tastes of old school punk/hardcore mixed with some aggressive dark passages and even closes out the album with a folk like tale but in classic FCF fashion. I love these guys.
Jeremy Larsen – Guitar
Nothing – Tired of Tomorrow
This year I’ve found myself getting more and more into the “shoegaze” genre more than ever. The one album that stuck with me the most would have to be Tired of Tomorrow. Compared to Nothing‘s previous album Guilty of Everything, they totally out did themselves and more with this release. With the howling leads, heavy distorted chords, and soothing vocal style, they create a sound that is almost sad and beautiful at the same time while also keeping a heavy overall depth to their sound. I can easily find parts to cry to, head bang, or just jam the fuck out to all throughout this album. I can definitely say it’s a great record from beginning to end.
Astronoid – Air
I had never heard of Astronoid prior to this album and discovered them while randomly browsing through my Google Play app. Their style is truly unique. While discovering this album their style was described as “Dream Thrash” which I found interesting and had to give it a listen. I was undoubtedly pleased with the blend of fast tempo, atmospheric sounds they create and shreddy guitar leads, and clean singing that have a soothing and almost auto tune feel.
Taylor Preston – Bass
Oathbreaker – Rheia
I was a pretty big fan of Oathbreaker‘s previous work but there was a huge evolution in their sound on this latest effort and it evolved in all the right ways. The overall production is amazing, and Caro Tanghe’s vocal performance is unreal- and by far the most crucial part of their sound. Her voice alone elevates this band to something truly unique. It’s modern black metal done right. Raw and heavy, yet mesmerizing.
Touche Amore – Stage Four
It was really hard for me to pick just 2 albums for this year and even harder to not write about an album one of my bandmates already picked, but I’m lucky enough to get this album. I’m going to keep it short and sweet, Stage Four has all the best elements from past Touche Amore records with a couple new elements such as Jeremy Bolm’s singing (think in the vein of The National). The music on the album is wonderfully produced but my favorite parts of the record would be the lyrics and vocal delivery. If you’re into the music, look up the story behind the lyrics. Its a very real and personal subject and I’m not afraid to say this album made me tear up. The album hits hard and is beautifully sad- just how I like my music!
Joseph Serrano – Drums
Thrice – To Be Everywhere Is Nowhere
This is Thrice’s best album, front to back. I’ve listened to this all the way through probably more than a hundred times and I’m still just as amazed with it as I was the first listen through. Thrice is an amazing band with talented songwriters, and I’m happy they’re back together making music. Each song on this album has catchy hooks and memorable lyrics that flow together beautifully with hard hitting bridges. 10/10, AOTY.
The Dillinger Escape Plan – Dissociation
The Dillinger Escape Plan has done it again with this one. I’m so happy they kept their sound from their last album, One of Us Is The Killer, while experimenting and pushing their sound even further. It’s sad that this is their second album in a row talking about the negatives of being in a band and that they’re calling it quits. I hope they come back again some day soon (fingers crossed). Either way, this album will live on forever as yet another perfect 10/10 from The Dillinger Escape Plan.
Marcus Vasquez – Guitar
Bon Iver – 22, A Million
I really liked the sort of industrial route Bon Iver took on this album. It was very reminiscent of Kid A/Amnesiac by Radiohead with all the multi layered electronic soundscapes and samples. The whole visual aesthetic that ties in with the album is really unique as well. Every song lends to some sort of numerical cryptic symbolism from the artwork that has something to do with life and death.
Radiohead – A Moon Shaped Pool
Radiohead continues to be one of the most innovative bands of our time. They did this whole series of vignettes for the artwork where they had different artists from around the world interpret the music in illustration and re-released a 32 page gatefold for the vinyl. Every piece has a sort of abstract surrealism to it which in turn reflects the music of the album. The album itself has this dreamlike vibe to it with very quiet ambient tones all throughout it. Thom Yorke’s haunting falsetto at times adds a sort of ominous feeling to the dreamlike state.