Just Mustard, Aronious, Mmulreso, and Íkarus

Just Mustard – Heart Under (Partisan)


Irish post-punk five-piece Just Mustard released their amazing new album earlier this year, back in May. Heart Under is their second album, and it really captures the ideal of the band: dark moody atmospheres, hypnotic rhythms, repeating structures, melancholic vocals, droning bass… With these ingredients, the band is able to do a lot of mileage: the album is just over 45 minutes long, and I wouldn’t like it any shorter! Between shoegaze and industrial, noise rock and trip-hop, that album is going to pull you in, that’s for sure!

Aronious – Irkalla (The Artisan

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Imperial Triumphant, The Callous Daoboys, Schleu, and Jakub Tirco

Imperial Triumphant – Spirit of Ecstasy (Century Media)



Alright, we have to talk about the new Imperial Triumphant. That album is truly something else. Not only does it take avant-garde black metal by storm, comparing favourably to the likes of Thantifaxath, but it does so with style and passion, shining the spotlight on many legendary musicians in the process (including Denis Bélanger, singer of Voïvod)! The music is dirty, oppressive, decadent, jumping from one filthy backstreet to another, and occasionally peeping through the window of an ivory tower to hear some fancy jazz being played at a banquet or … Read more

Cassels, The Dali Thundering Concept, Hoofless, and Voïvod

Cassels – A Gut Feeling (God Unknown)


One of the first heavy-hitters of the year is noise rock band Cassels’s newest ≮-tagged release: A Gut Feeling. After last year’s Black Country, New Road domination, I feel this year Cassels have given us a title worthy of the very best of 2022 in its category. A Gut Feeling is full of repeating riffs and songs with exploratory structures and progressions, with a rather unique delivery, between speaking and singing, that’s sure to make them stand out. It’s one of the strong noise rock releases this year!

The Dali Thundering

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Bubblemath, Dalila Kayròs, Extra Life, and Contemplator

Bubblemath – Turf Ascension (Cuneiform)


Accolades like “the best prog band in the last decades” should not be overlooked as mere exaggerations. Indeed, they are statements worthy of examination. Bubblemath has been on my radar since their 2017 release Edit Peptide, and reading back at this five-year-old critique, I find nothing more to add for Turf Ascension, so I’ll just paraphrase: it’s complex yet groovy prog. Definitely one of the best prog rock album of the year so far!

Dalila Kayròs – Animàmi (Subsound)


Italian singer Dalila Kayròs has at this point played in so many of my… Read more

Best of Progressive Metal 2021


The “progressive metal” category casts such a wide net that I had to subdivide it into several subcategories. So, instead of making a top 5 for every one of them, let’s see only the best concept album, the best experimental album, the best instrumental album, the best vocal album, the best prog-power album, and the best prog-thrash album from 2021!


Best Prog-Power: Æphanemer – A Dream of Wilderness


It’s got the cheese, it’s got the shredder, it’s got the pasta.


Best Prog-Thrash: Cryptosis – Bionic Swarm



Throughout the many really cool thrash metal albums the year gave us, Cryptosis’s stood … Read more