Ok, I know this reasoning is totally gonna fuck me in 2030 but for now we’re going to go with it. As a preview of the new year, I give you Metal Monday’s Top 12 of 2012:
1. Ministry: Relapse (March 30th, 2012)
Did I not tell you that I went to 2 of the 4 “farewell” shows Ministry did in Chicago in 2008? One part of me should be pissed that Uncle Al got Ministry back together but the other half of me is entirely too excited at the prospect of new Ministry music to care. The webisodes for Relapse have been great and I constantly find myself playing them over and over just to hear snippets of new songs. If this isn’t my favorite album of the year, I’l be surprised.
2. Killing Joke (Spring 2012)
Absolute Dissent blew me away. The original line-up back again for Round 2. Even if this was Absolute Dissent Version 2.0 I’d still eat it up because that album and this line-up is so good. If you thought Jaz Coleman and company were past their prime then think again. Killing Joke prove time after time that some bands only get better with age.
3. Testament: Dark Roots of the Earth (April 27th, 2012)
Sure, i would’ve been happier if this was in my hands now (It was due in October of 2011) but if they need the extra time to make sure that this is just right, I’ll wait. Gene Hoglan sits behind the kit on this one which is sure to up the ante already set by The Formation of Damnation. As a bonus, guitarist extraordinaire Alex Skolnick was with the band from the start this time (He came in after most of TFOD was written), so expect some of their classic sound to creep in a little more this time around.
4. Knives Out!: Black Mass Hysteria (February 14th, 2012)
I have loved everything that vocalist Todd Smith has been a part of. There’s the severely overlooked Dog Fashion Disco who was equal parts Slayer and Oingo Boingo and the equally demented Polkadto Cadaver (On tour early 2012 with Wayne Static) and then this: Knives Out! Started with Nothingface’s Tom Maxwell (Who has since rejoined HELLYEAH full time) and Tommy Sickles with DFD/PC’s Jasan Stepp and David Cullen, Knives Out! Black Mass Hysteria has been long in the works but sure to be worth the wait. If you haven’t heard Smith’s voice, check out any of the band’s he’s been in already or the Knives Out! Rough Cuts EP available on Itunes now. Watch this space soon for more on these guys.
5. Therapy?: A Brief Crack Of Light (February 6, 2012)
Like the above mentioned bands (Knives Out! excluded), Therapy? have been one of my favorites for almost 20 years. Crooked Timber was sick and sorely underappreciated album (Especially in the States!). A Brief Crack… will probably not break them in The States again anytime soon but I’m glad they’re still making music. Like KJ, they just keep getting better and better.
6. Lamb Of God: Resolution (January 24th, 2012)
Have you heard “Ghost Walking”? That alone should put it on everyone’s Tops of 2012 lists. I follow a few of the members on Twitter and still was totally shocked when this seemingly appeared out of nowhere. It’s gonna be sick.
7. Meshuggah (March 2012)
Four years since the awesome obZen, technical metallers Meshuggah are back to show you how it’s done.
8. Gojira (Spring 2012)
I have no idea what became of the supposed Sea Shepherd EP that was supposed to come out by now but regardless, Gojira have a fresh new label (Roadrunner Records) and a fresh new album due in the spring.
9. Prong (Spring 2012)
Tommy Victor is finally getting around to making a new Prong album! Five years after the vicious Power of the Damager, Victor, along with bassist Tony Campos (Static X, Ministry) and drummer Aaron Rossi are back to create one of the surefire standouts of 2012.
10. Every Time I DIe (Spring 2012)
This band has gotten better and better with each album. If you were a fan of vocalist Keith Buckley’s other band The Damned Things, don’t come to the ETID party expecting more of the same. Schizophrenic, wild, and out of control with razor sharp riffs and more time changes than plot twists in an M. Night Shyamalan movie, ETID deliver the goods. Expect big things this year.
11. Fear Factory (2012)
Say what you will about the strongest line-up of Fear Factory. I say as long as Burton’s involved, it’ll work. The latest incarnation featuring Dino back in the fold along with the Strapping Young Lad rhythm section of Gene Hoglan and Byron Stroud delivered one hell of a comeback album with 2010’s Mechanize. Rumored to be going into concept mode a la Obsolete on their next, it would seem silly for them not to release something now especially with all the conspiracies surrounding 2012. If FF doesn’t release in 2012, there’s always…
12. City of Fire (Early 2012)
COF is decidedly more hard rock than metal but having a vocalist like Burton Bell and SYL/FF bassist Byron Stroud on board make the band’s sophomore effort worth checking out. Their debut is painfully overlooked as well and is a no-brainer to check out if you’re a fan of Fear Factory or Ascension of the Watchers.
Also due in 2012 and worth your attention: Soulfly (Enslaved, March 13, 2012), Torche (TBD), Seventh Void (TBD), Corrosion of Conformity (Original line-up, February 28, 2012), Spineshank (Anger Denial Acceptance, TBD), American Head Charge (TBD), Killswitch Engage (TBD), Baroness (Early 2012)